Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Coons and cats and kittens, oh my...

Mama raccoon and her babies eating on our back porch
  We have 2 mama raccoons that bring their babies up to eat several times a day. One has 5 babies, one has 2.  The cats that hang out in our yard co-habitate well with the coons.  They give each other a wide berth most of the time. The babies (raccoons and kittens alike) are curious and occasionally try to get close. The mamas run them off. But they never fight... or at least I've never seen them fight.

I was reading another site this morning and they were talking about the "life of cats" with the "life of Reilly" inference.  Truly, cats do seem to have the good life... at least the ones with homes do.  We cater to their every whim, feed, play, and entertain them.  They nap, eat, nap, play, nap, and nap.  Seems like a pretty good set-up.  My 6 are all different ages from 6 to 19 at the moment. And their personalities are all different.  Tux, who is a huge black and white male, brother to Jack who was pictured as Captain Jack on post entitled Cat Tales, is what we call a wus cat.  He is needy and wants loving all the time. If I don't sit down to read or rest by 2 pm, Tux will start following me around caterwauling.  It's his time.. or so he thinks. When I do sit down and he plops into my lap, if I have the audacity to start reading a book, he immediately reaches up and pulls it down... then pats my face (as if to say, "look at ME).  He is a mess.  But he's our mess.

Tux on left, Jack on right

Now the homeless cats that choose our yard as their sanctuary get pretty good treatment also. We feed twice a day (dry and wet) as well as lay out treats, toys, and fresh water.  In the summer they have the patio fan to lie under and in the winter we put out hay and heat lamps for their comfort.  They have a wood fenced yard to protect them from dogs and coyotes and can come and go as they please. We follow the catch and release program and if we can catch them, we vaccinate, spay or neuter, and release. Kittens get picked up at about 2-3 weeks, taken in and bottle-fed, played with to ensure friendliness, and then taken to cat adoption room at our local no-kill shelter (and are usually adopted out within the week). 

However, we don't always catch the mamas and thus, we do have repeat litters, but we try.  We have 2 young mamas in our yard now.  We took Bootsie's babies when they were about  3 weeks.  They have already been adopted out. But we haven't caught Bootsie yet. The other little mama moved her babies not long after we found her hiding place and before we could get the kittens.  Now they are in the yard and adorable, but much too fast to catch.


Nadia said...

Nice to see your cute babies! Wish all you good luck :)

Rian said...

Thank you, Nadia. I visited your site also. Your drawings, sketches, and paintings are wonderful. Keep it up!

Phoca Largha said...

Rian, I also read your nice blog with pleasure and interest. I love animals very much, and read in English, for practice, too.
Thank you for warm words :).

sparrow said...

Hi from New Zealand. I just came across your blog via Ms Sparrow in Minnesota. Seems we are all cat lovers! I love the stories of your black and whites. There appears to be something of the "wus" gene in a black and white. We have one too - a 12 year old called Otto who isn't very well at the moment. When his younger sister, a beautiful tortie callled Cookie had to be put down, we got Otto a companion kitten - an orange blossom princess we named Cumin. This year we got Otto an apprentice from the SPCA (we went looking for a black and white and came back with a tabby). Ruppin (formerly known as Tank) is the funniest thing and is learning to protect the Ginger Ninja. Welcome to my blog any time. Blessings and shalom, Jane