Guest photo by Hydra!
The neighbor’s cat regards Hydra and his camera.
Is the cat playing hide and seek or is that the evil eye he’s giving us? I have to admit we have given this cat the evil eye plenty of times in the past. We feed wild birds. He kills them.
This cat’s owner chucked him and his five pals out of the house ten years ago because she developed an allergy. WHAT? Much as I hate birds being killed, I get that this cat was put in a bad situation and he adapted as best he could…which was pretty well.
“Most of them just disappeared!” she told me , almost happily, like they were out there in cat paradise having fun.
“Yeah,” I said as gently as I could given my horror, “We’ve seen cat skulls on the trails. Lots of coyotes around here.”
She just blinked.
The cat caused an actual rift with a second neighbor with whom I had worked with for several years at a previous job, who does lots of volunteer work with animals and has lots of cats and rabbits in her house. Since she is a self-proclaimed expert, when Hydra saw her in her yard one day, he went over to ask her advice about deterring cats and protecting birds.
“I don’t want to see an animal get hurt,” he told her, meaning just that. That he didn’t want the cat to get hit crossing the street to our hunting ground or whatever. He followed with questions, but she seemed very odd and didn’t really answer.
Turns our she’d watched a few too many mob movies. Later that day she sent me a rabid email about how he had threatened her and her animals. “You don’t know who I am!” she steamed. And on and on. Wow. Yeah. I guess not. Her words were so heated that I was almost afraid she was going to throw a rock through our window.
Nothing more happened, except we avoided the crazy cat/rabbit lady and I did my own damned research about how to deal with the issue.
Anyway, this cat was a really good hunter. There is not a lot you can do to keep a cat our of your yard, so I changed the location of the feeder, kept the honeysuckle hedge trimmed so he couldn’t hide in it, etc. Still, we frequently faced a disembodied head, or wing, or drops and smears of blood on the sidewalk. To his credit, he ate what he caught.
I don’t know where or if they still feed him kibble because when they put it out on the front porch they ended up with a conspiracy of ravens outside their door. Which delighted me and freaked her out.
Now the cat’s getting old. He mostly stopped meowing mournfully to be let back into the house years ago. He likes to curl up in the planter bed in front of our house when the afternoon sun warms it up in the winter. It looks like he’s taken over the planter on what he still considers his own front porch.
I feel for the old guy. I’ll bet he feels his bones every morning. He should be sitting in someone’s lap.
What? You’ve never seen a cat in a blankie before?
Now, this is how you treat a cat. Summer, of The Cousins’ B&B.