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Country Discussion Topics
To add your comments to this topic, click on one of the 'Reply' links below.

Loyalty in cats?
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Cindi    Posted 10-29-2003 at 09:09:19       [Reply]  [No Email]
Sometime in early July Fred called me at 7:00 a.m. and proceeded to blow my mind and overheat it at the same time, way too much information, and weird information at that.

"I was going down hiway 64" says he "doing about seventy miles an hour, on my way to work when I looked in the rearview mirror and there's Salem standing in the back of the truck, his claws dug into the toolbox, just hanging on for dear life."

This is my daughter Jenny's cat. Clinging to the damn toolbox, seventy miles an hour down the open hiway.

"I stopped and put him in the truck and now he's locked in my office, you're going to have to come get him, and by the way, looks like he might loose a leg, his right front is all torn up and swollen and bleeding like crazy."

It turns out he had two puncture wounds, consistent with a dog's bite range, the leg was swollen because it was abcessed, and he had a temp of 106.5. Basically doctor Hayman said he was dying, and in another twenty four hours he would have been dead.

He and three aides held him down and forcefully drained the abcess and gave him a kick as* antibiotic shot.

While they had him there I asked to have him neutered. It was time for all this wandering and getting into mischief to stop and if he has no reason to roam, maybe he'll stay home.

He's only about two years old, and I was hoping that if we fed him well, stuff he likes, that he would be ready to retire anyway. I mean, once he steps up to bat and finds that there's no bat, he'll eventually give up, right?

Since he was.....demasulated?....he has taken to sleeping under the house and stays home all the time now, leaving us to discover a rare fact about him. He seems to have a monogomous relationship with a young lady cat. I've seen her around before, she is wild as she can be.

It's been almost four months since Salem was able to....perform, and still she comes around, just like clockwork, every day. They lounge on the porch or under the truck, licking each other, playing together. I would think it would be food that was keeping her her, but because of the chickens, Salem comes in the house to eat. It's odd. I never suspected that cats had long term relationships. I wish I knew of some way to tame her, I would adopt her.



RichZ    Posted 10-29-2003 at 10:12:52       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Cindi, we have two barn cats, Rusty and Trouble that we got to control mice in our barn. We got them as tiny kittens, and they're now a little over one year old. They're biological brothers, and best pals. They're both neutered. They're almost always together.

For almost a year, we've had a feral tiger cat hanging around our barn. He also was as wild as can be, and he ate our cats' food, and got into a few fights with them. I was also determined to tame him, and adopt him.

I started putting out a second bowl of food, in the barn, about six months ago. I'd feed the cats first every morning and evening as I went about my chores in the barn. After a while, the feral cat started eating the food in the seperate bowl. I'd talk to him as I did my chores, and I'd play with Rusty and Trouble, where he could see the three of us playing. (Rusty and Trouble are extremely affectionate, and people oriented, and great mousers, too!) The feral cat would always watch us, very interested. Over time, I started approaching him closer and closer as he ate. Ten feet, eight feet, six feet, and so on. I made it a little closer every few days.

Finally, about three weeks ago, I tried to pet him as he ate. He was startled, even though I moved very slowly, but he let me pet him. I made it quick, and did it again the next day. Again slowly increasing our time of contact. After a few days he started loudly purring as I pet him. The first time he purred, he jumped, and looked around, as if to see who made that strange noise. It was hysterical!! I don't think he ever had any human contact before, and I don't think he ever purred before.

After a few more days, if I sat near him as he ate, he'd come over close to me, and expect me to pet him. After a few more days, I slowly reached my hand under him, and picked him up. Again, he was startled, but he sees me pick up Rusty and Trouble all of the time. I kept on petting him, while holding him, and put him down. Every day, I held him for longer periods of time. Yesterday, to my surprise he was sitting a few feet next to Rusty and Trouble when I came into the barn. After I picked up and played with my two cats, the feral cat meowed at me loudly. I think he actually was asking to be picked up!!! Which I quickly did!!

Now the trick is to get him to be pals with the other two cats. They try to touch him, but he hisses at them. But my two boys are so good natured, that they keep trying, and just like me they're getting closer and closer to him. I think in a short time, all three will be happily playing.

Now I have to find a name for him. right now I'm considering Cranky, but we'll see.

So just try to make friends with your feral cat. Just be patient and take it very slow.


Hal/WA    Posted 10-29-2003 at 21:48:44       [Reply]  [No Email]
A calico barn cat lives at my place (She was born here, but never had the vital early human contact, so she is very wild). I have touched her less than 10 times, and only when she was eating. But she obviously likes me, since she will follow me around, staying just out of reach, purring as loud as I have ever heard a cat purr.

I have other tame cats that seek me out when they are hungry or want attention, but none follow me around the place like that calico. She is not my cat, however I may well be her human. I am kind to all the cats and of course, I am the one that feeds them.

I think cats, especially barn cats with their developed social groups, are very interesting. I have found that unless I have found that mama barn cats almost always hide their newborn kittens and unless I find and handle those kittens when they are really small and consistantly while they are nursing, many of the kittens will never become tame. The calico is from a litter I missed. It's too bad. I think she would really love to be petted, but just cannot get over her fear. Maybe someday.


Brian-2N    Posted 10-29-2003 at 10:04:30       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Cats do carry on relationships. They look upon you as a big cat, unlike a dog, who thinks of you as the leader of the pack.
Because we keep them as pets, they never fully mature. You are the mother cat. You feed them, and cuddle them.
I believe despite the term "morals of an alley-cat", that cats are quite monogamous.
I have 2 cats, both fixed, both black and white, male and female. I also have a black and white mini Rex rabbit. She is not fixed. She is crazy for the male cat. Somehow even though he is fixed she can tell he's a boy. I've tried to tell her that even if he wasn't fixed, it wouldn't work out.
She doesn't listen. She persists in chasing him and sniffing you know where. Crazy rabbit.


JDK    Posted 10-29-2003 at 10:22:21       [Reply]  [No Email]
I agree,animals"know" each otherand neuters do not seem to be ostracized or ignored by other animals,indeed sometimes seem even more readily accepted on the "turf".Maybe somehow the are percieved as unthreatening w/o their sexuality.Cats do tend to visit other cats when not in competition for food/sex.We use to kid about the"changing of the cats" each fall on the farm.Usually we'd lose 1 or 2 for the winter to a neighboring farm,but gain a couple new ones from somewhere else.Cats are loving but strictly opportunistic,,if things look better elsewhere they'll go there...your "stray" may be feral or may "belong" to a neighbor.Cats on their own will establish and patrol up to a 2 mile loop of turf as theirs and most will follow the same route &schedule daily making stops along the way.Theres one here that daily goes door to door visiting all the old gals that put treats out.He eats,takes a nap,and a good petting,then it's on to the next house and treat.Even though he has a permanant home nearby and is well treated,he seems to have established his route,just to say hi and have a snack w/the old gals ea day.


Cindi    Posted 10-29-2003 at 11:36:14       [Reply]  [No Email]
This one we have named Chloe. It seems to fit her. I think of 'forlorn' and the name Chloe pops in my mind. She runs the minute we leave the house and hides in the palmettos until we go back in. She's really very pretty and dainty for a stray so she may very well belong to someone somewhere, but I think of her as wild because the minute she sees a human she's gone. She has never presented a problem, such as killing chickens like the last cat that we had hanging around. She is welcome in the family I just don't know how to tell her that.

....Rich you crack me up. What a picture. A cat startled by it's own purring. That is too funny!


rhouston    Posted 10-29-2003 at 12:34:24       [Reply]  [No Email]
my little girl is named Chloe. And forlorn is NOT what it brings to mind. Willful, stubborn, not to be ingnored little red head is what "Chloe" brings to mind.


Cindi    Posted 10-29-2003 at 14:14:01       [Reply]  [No Email]
I guess it depends on what Chloes you know! Lol.


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