It was many and many a year ago…

Well, actually about six.

One morning I saw a wild, scrawny, tuxie boy in the yard. Completely feral. Perhaps about half-grown. I put out food for him on the porch and went inside so he could eat.

And his two brothers turned up at the dish, each scrawnier and more scared than the other. A tabby boy with a skinny tail, and an orange brother. Except for the coloring, like peas in a pod, the same cat just painted different colors.

The orange brother ate about twice, and then disappeared.

Tabby brother stuck around long enough to get a name, and took off, leaving us with Loper. Over the years I worked at approaching him, and got to the point that he’d let me touch his head. Briefly, in the right circumstances.

Then they started with the construction work next door, and he vanished. I think they destroyed his sleeping den. But since the neighbors were all madly meeting, I spoke with Gail-from-around-the-corner and discovered she’d been feeding “Oliver” as well, and now he’d moved onto her porch. And she had recently progressed to the point of getting to pat his belly (!).

So now we are sharing custody, as it were. Sometimes I see, and feed, him every night on the front porch for days at a time. Other times I don’t see him for days, and assume he is staying with his other mother. My current guys appear to not care at all about who goes sitting on their porches, bless them. The boys just walk past him, or sit with him at night, staring out into the yard.

In the meanwhile, though, poor Wolfie moved out of the house because Sisko arrived and bullied him. The tolerance doesn’t seem to include my poor scaredy cat, sigh. So I had to start feeding him out on the back porch. And since there was food out there, a stray orange cat turned up, and he gets his dish too. Since there are regular meals here, he has moved into the basement.

It took me weeks to remember about Loper’s shyer brother, but as soon as I did it all clicked. He is still the same Loper-shaped boy, just painted dark orange. Somehow he lost half his tail over the years. He is utterly feral. We are negotiating him waiting on the bottom step while I put out his food. He is not sure that is a good idea.

Last night I was feeding the cats at midnight (“Last Call!”), and checked the front porch. Someone was on the chair, so I got a plate of food and catnip and went to feed Loper.

It was TOBY. I haven’t seen the boy for at least two years. He didn’t run off, and let me put down the food. I didn’t attempt anything more.

But, hey! All the Feral Brothers are back!

 

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15 responses to this post.

  1. That’s a wonderful story! You have a big heart to welcome all those cats who live on the periphery.

    Reply

  2. There are at least two other people on the block who feed random kitties.
    So they all look well-fed, and you wouldn’t know they were wild unless you knew them.
    (And there is a way really feral guys look at you that is just… different.)
    We have such a rodent problem that I tend to think of their presence as a neighborhood service.

    Reply

  3. Awww, what a happy story 😀

    Reply

  4. Yay for kitty reunions!

    Reply

  5. Very very cool!

    Reply

  6. […] post brought on by Lauowolf’s feral kitty […]

    Reply

  7. Good for them, that you are good to take such an interest in them, and supplement their meals 🙂

    Reply

  8. And that’s how my sister’s feral marmie got the name Six-Dinner Sid–it turned out when she went around the neighborhood that he was cashing in on about half a dozen meals a day. Sid is now her very elderly garage kitty, but he’s still feral. For gushy, stinky fud, you may be permitted to pet his shoulders, but that’s about it. So glad the Feral Brothers are hanging around again.

    Reply

  9. What a treat, that they all survived and are still visiting! This is a very good thing!

    Reply

  10. Huzzah! for people feeding the strays 🙂

    Reply

  11. That’s awesome!

    MeowMeow will appear for days on end then disappear for twice as many. I once went several years without seeing him, thinking he had moved away, when he reappeared – dirty and disheveled and scrawny. Now, several years later, he looks healthy & happy again. He showed up on Sat or Sun and again today (and was quite annoyed that I moved him off the comfy bed (MY bed) and outdoors when I left for work).

    I hope your brood makes regular visits so you can keep tabs on them!

    Reply

    • Sometimes I get the feeling that they all have a message board, and receive their instructions….
      Yes, they come and go, and have important Cat Business to go do.
      O do like it when they look all spiffy though.

      Reply

  12. I have a group of 6-7 kittehs on my block this year. Mr. and Mrs Kitty and their brood. All tabbies except for one tuxie with a teeny tiny white moooostache. I still can only approach Mr. Kitty, whom my neighbors named bulldozer because he’s a head pusher when he wants pettins. Anyway, the best any of us can do is feed them, which my next door neighbors do nightly. None of us have the resources to trap and release so it is what it is right now. There have never been so many at once on our block, and apparently they DO have shelter down the street by way of a basement, I just don’t know the details because my neighbor hasn’t articulated it to me in anyway that makes sense. Anyway, i wish I could do more.

    Reply

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