Can you believe it was June 2012 that mom first saw Allie (our feral girl) and caught the alcohol kittens?? (for their first post, click here)
At the time Allie was spayed, the vet aged her about 2 years old, which would make her about 5 years old now. For a feral, that is pretty good. We do what we can for her...keep an eye out, leave the garage door up a crack for her to get to food, water and shelter. There are even some toys in the garage (we know someone is playing - those toys move around). And while we wish we could wrap her up and find her a home and everything, she truly is feral. Mom can get within about 4 feet of Allie before she takes off. Even when she was crated with her kittens, Allie made it VERY clear to mom that she wasn't happy about the situation.
But Allie is spayed and she has safety and food. One of our neighbors has a shelter set up for her too and puts food out as well. And the neighbor said that she has seen Allie lounging under another neighbor's dryer vent in the winter. Resourceful our girl.....
We aren't sure how far Allie roams. And especially when the weather gets nice, mom doesn't see her as often. A couple of weeks ago, mom had seen her on a Monday morning. On Tuesday evening, mom drove to the shelter to volunteer and there was a cat on the side of the road that had been hit by a car and obviously died from it. Mom was almost sure it was Allie. But she couldn't bring herself to go check more closely. Mom said that just wasn't the image she wanted in her head of our girl. We were heartbroken....but we also knew that locking Allie in a house was never an option.
Well, that Saturday evening, mom ran an errand, and there was Allie - sitting just like she is above...across from our garage, waiting for mom to get out of the way. Mom was stunned. And while we hope the black cat mom saw along the road didn't suffer, we are glad it wasn't Allie.
We know she won't live forever.....none of us do. And life for a feral cat is even harder. Though with her being 5 years old now, she certainly has to be street smarter than most. We will continue to provide her with what we can. Mom has sat in the garage before and talked to Allie, but Allie makes no indication that she is going to give mom a chance to get too close.
For anyone who loves a feral, you understand. And we certainly don't ever want to discourage anyone from getting involved in TNR and caring for colony cats. It can be incredibly rewarding.....and getting them spayed and neutered cuts down on fights and disease and overpopulation.
I completely understand. We cared for a feral cat named Buddy for years. He lived in our yard, but roamed. He disappeared for about 8 months and I thought for sure he was gone. Then one Saturday morning he just appeared in our backyard. Unfortunately, he was injured, but I knew he had come back to us for help. He was totally feral so we had to trap him which took about a week. We did finally get him to a vet, but by then it was too late to save him. I wish we could have brought him inside, but he was a true feral boy. I do take some comfort that at some level he knew to return to our yard for help after his injury. Caring for and loving a feral cat can sometimes be heartbreaking ...ReplyDelete
we are glad he found his way back to you....and that you were able to help him...even it was just to let him go.Delete
This has made Mum feel sad - besides us there are quite a few cats around here but none of them are feral.ReplyDelete
Luv Hannah and Lucy xx xx
I've got a few myself. My Mama cat looks so much like Allie! Every so often they leave a bird at our door as a gift. lolReplyDelete
Yep, being a feral caretaker is rewarding, but you are always ready for something. Fortunately, the spay and neuter make the cats less apt to wander really far, and the females tend to stay pretty close to the home/food base. Once, I saw a smallish black cat in the middle of the street; freshly killed by a car. Tears welled in my eyes, because the cat looks so much like Sweetie. I pulled over, and looked at the ears...no tip. So, not 'my' cat, but I said a prayer to St. Francis for the soul of the cat I was kneeling by. When Patty doesn't show up for a meal, my heart jumps in my mouth and I wait. So far, he's always come back again. Maybe Allie will someday allow more closeness...five years for me to get close to Sweetie, and she will still bat my hand away if she isn't in the mood...but now she does it with her claws in! Woo hoo, progress!ReplyDelete
Mum never met a true feral cat ; we have many cats around here but they all belong to someone or come from the farm nearby. But many of them are very shy with strangers ! PurrsReplyDelete
what a sweetie. At 5 she is probably more "street savvy" as you said, but I still worry. You are wonderful to do all that you do!ReplyDelete
Caring for ferals is incredibly hard on the heart but so rewarding too when you know you are doing everything possible while keeping them healthy and happy. Thank you for caring for Allie. She looks very good!ReplyDelete
Thank you for caring for Allie, and the other ferals in your area. She's obviously a smart and savvy ladycat to have survived for five years. Here's to many, many more years of safety and health for her.ReplyDelete
quality over quantity.. every timeReplyDelete
How awesome that Allie is so well cared for. I'm sure she knows it too, even though she does not want any physical contact with her caretakers.ReplyDelete
How nice of you to take care of Allie and the other ferals.ReplyDelete
glad she's okay I've fed feral before but could never get them to come inside. She's a smart one and that's why she's lived so long keep caring and I know she knows shes lovedReplyDelete
I'm so glad that Allie is alive and well! Whew! My heart was really breaking for you guys. Thank you for caring so much for this feral girl.ReplyDelete
- Purrs from your friends at www.PlayfulKitty.net
It's hard to care for a feral and not be able to do any more for her than let her go her own way. But even if she doesn't ever warm to you, you've given her the gift of a chance, and the advantage of all the help she'll accept. She must appreciate that, even if it's not the kind of appreciation that curls up in bed with you at night.ReplyDelete
We're so glad Allie has your mom taking as good care of her as she can.ReplyDelete
allie !!! nice two see ewe again ~~~~~~ waves... N we R veree happee mom spotted ewe...de food gurl heer in trout towne all most jumped for joy when her final lee spotted 'turtle" again....afturr what seemed like yeerz.... ♥♥♥ReplyDelete
We're thankful it wasn't Allie, but our hearts hurt for the kitty it was.ReplyDelete
We've said it before and we'll say it again, God bless your mom for ALL she does for animals!!!
This was a great article. I enjoy hearing about your care for feral Miss Allie. Your concern for her wellbeing is beautiful. You are right, it is so important to spay and neuter.ReplyDelete