Thursday, October 05, 2006

The three-legged cat falls off the roof

Lovey on the railing

 I just spent three hours catching the three-legged cat! That's Lovey, whose shoulder was injured by being carried off by a bluejay when he was a feral kitten. The lady who heard the kitten screaming ran out threw rocks and the blue jay dropped the kitten. I got him after he was trapped. He was a pettable-only-while-eating cat for a while, but with me, indoors, he is totally friendly, pick-upable, comes when called to eat, rolls on the floor to have his stomach rubbed, hops up on my lap and purrs. When he is upset, he reverts to wild. And, apparently being loose in the wild outdoors is enough to turn him wild again.

He fell of the roof! Well, I had just put him out on the porch, and he and Buddy got in a fight and rolled right off. I heard the commotion and looked out and saw the other cat looking over the edge. When I went out side they both ran away from me - well, Lovey hopped. That's how he gets around. Buddy showed up at the door later, and came in for dinner with a little coaxing. (He was feral too, but learned early to come through a door when called.) Lovey found the porch mid-evening, but when I tried to call him in, he left, and spent the night outside. It was the first really rainy night and morning of the year, too. And he didn't show before I went to school this morning, or when I came home mid-afternoon. There are coyotes living just down the hill, so I was worried.

I called again about 5:30, and I guess he was thinking it was dinner time, because he showed up. And after calling awhile, and approaching very cautiously, he came towards me - closer, closer - I moved my hand and he ran. After that I was just trying to herd him to keep him from vanishing again down the hill. There was no getting close to him. Finally, at almost dark I gave up. Left the basement door propped open, and went in to feed the other cats.

He heard me doing that, and cried from outside. "Aren't you going to feed me too?" I took a dish of noisy dried food out, and he hopped right over to eat near the porch, but wouldn't let me closer than 4 or 5 feet. So one time he spooked, I moved the dish up onto the porch, and after a while he came up there to eat. He still wouldn't let me near him. It was very dark by then.

I felt my way down the stairs and collected a lot of large empty plant pots and barricaded the porch stairs. That worked, sort of 'cause he can only hop. Then I turned on the porch light, and took a can of cat food out on the porch, and popped the top. He came right over to it to eat, but still no touching. So I took my book out, and sat there. He would eat next to my hand, but not be touched.

So I put the can of cat food just inside the open door, and when I sat down again, I was a little too close, and he got scared. Luckily he didn't jump off the porch. He went over to investigate the food, went in the door, started to explore - and I leaped up and shut the door on him. The hall doors were all closed so he couldn't just vanish in the house. He was scared and tried to run, so that was a good idea. So I went and got Cheesecake (the other cat), and opened the doors to where I wanted him to go. But after he and Cheesecake said hello, I guess he decided he was indoors now, and he let me walk right over and pet him and pick him up.

So I took him into the room where he is used to eating, and put him down, and the food - and he rolled over on his back to have me rub his stomach… Tame inside, wild outside.

The picture is a painting-style image of Lovey on the porch railing in a characteristic pose.

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At 10/14/2006 8:27 PM, Anonymous billy said...

I posted a comment. Did you get it.


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