Two weeks ago, I was sitting on the back porch near bedtime reading the news on my phone. It was very dark out that night. It was also a very quiet evening. All of the sudden, someone behind my chair yelled at me. He said, “MEOW!!!”
Cats don’t typically venture into our yard because of our 100+ pound Black Lab/Great Dane mix, Tank. This cat had not only come into our yard, but had walked up the steps to our second story porch, and parked himself right behind me.
When he yelled at me, I jumped up so fast that my chair almost fell over. I thought I’d scared the poor thing but, nope. He was still standing behind me. Then, he yelled at me again, “MEOW!!!”
I leaned down to pet him and he started purring very loudly. He let me pick him up and cuddle him. I walked to the back door and opened it a crack. Max and Mason were doing the dishes. I said, “Mason, put Tank in your room real quick.” He gave me a quizzical look but he did as I asked. Then, I walked in the back door with the small, purring fur ball and all of us fell in love.
I took a picture, and sent it to our neighbor, Regina, who knows everybody. She did not know who the cat belonged to but the cat had been in her yard the previous day. She chased it off because cats like to play in her small goldfish pond.
The kitty was small and on the skinny side. We guessed around six months or so. No collar, no tag, and not neutered. I was starting to think somebody dumped him. That seems to happen a lot in our neighborhood. Despite my warning, the boys named him anyway. Rocky. Max has another cat named Rambo. It seriously took me an entire day to make the connection there. It’s a blonde thing…
Anyway, when we went to bed, we let Rocky back outside, and gave him a bowl of water and a can of tuna.
The next morning, he was back on the back porch, standing at the back door, obviously looking for a free breakfast. Brian walked out, picked him up, and brought him inside. When the boys got up, I sent them to the store for cat food. We would play with him for a bit, and put him back outside because Tank had detected the feline invader and he was having a grand time chasing Rocky.
In the afternoon, Rocky was back at the door, meowing again. Brian opened the door and Tank muscled past him and chased Rocky right off the porch!!! Rocky jumped about 10 feet down. Thank goodness is it was the side of the porch that is the closest to the ground (the house is on a slope). We then didn’t see Rocky again that evening…until bedtime. I was picking up my sweater, and heading inside when I heard him meowing at the downstairs door. Max and Mason had been so distraught after Tank chased Rocky away. I hollered in the house to them, “Somebody is meowing at the back door!” They both raced downstairs. So cute!!
The next morning, I went downstairs to wake up Max for church and Rocky was curled up on his bed, snoring loudly. Yes, he really snores. Max recorded him doing it.
On Monday morning, I called and made an appointment with our vet. They could see Rocky that day. He was negative for feline leukemia and he got all of his shots. He did not have a chip. And, he is not six months old. Based on his teeth, the vet estimates he’s about a year and a half. He is probably small because he didn’t get enough to eat during his first year. 🙁
Brian and I determined that Rocky would be an outdoor cat because we both hate litter boxes. I’m not sure how it happened but Rocky is now an indoor cat and we own two litter boxes; one upstairs and one downstairs. Brian is really more of a dog person…or so I thought. When Rocky had only been here two days, Brian came home from running errands with a bag of canned cat food (“we can’t give him dry stuff!”), and kitty toys.
And, while we originally thought that Tank would eat Rocky in one swallow, Rocky has taken over as the dominant male in the family. He no longer runs from Tank. Rather, he prances in front of him, just daring him to give chase. And, he thinks the dogs’ tails are the BEST cat toys EVER!
By the way, Rocky is getting neutered on May 15th. He doesn’t know that yet. Shhhh! Don’t tell!!!
Here’s a picture of Rocky after getting drunk on catnip. Yes, that’s his face lying flat on the comforter.
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Oh yes. How familiar is this! We were dog people, and all the dogs, guinea pigs, bunnies, you name it – were in the past. Until we moved to South Carolina. Funny how different parts of the country have more strays than others. And, of course, a “cat lady” moved in next door to us. Lots of her cats here and there. I kept trying to chase them away, and was pretty successful, at first.
However, a skinny orange tabby came up on my deck one day. I shooed it away, only for it to scurry down the steps, turn the head, and look at me. Our eyes locked. Weird how that happened. Hum. I asked it if it were hungry. It said it was. And when it meowed to me, I figured it was hungry. So, I got out some, (get this) leftover lamb! And brought it down to it. So, once a cat gets fed, that is it you are done, and I mean done for.
His name is Clayton, he is now a fat cat with plenty of food. He also snores, and comes to sit on my stomach, and hang out with me if I want him up on my couch, and all sixteen pounds of him laying as close to me as possible. What can I say? Another one came, darn it! His name is Peaches, and he is really a cutie, and now the renter kid brings another smaller orange Tabby (which I take care of for him because the kid works and socializes when not working). So NOW I have three cats. And “cat lady” next door sends Pepper over to my back porch and it meows all the while until I feed it! Despite me feeding my three cats, they all run over to “cat lady’s” front porch and gobble up her cat food that she leaves outside for the whole blasted neighborhood!
Before we moved to Florida, we lived in New Jersey. One Saturday afternoon, a rag doll cat showed up at our back door. When I opened the door to see if she was hungry, she strolled into our house like she owned the place.
We had three other cats then—two spayed females and a neutered male. The female cats gave her a sniff, rubbed her then walked away. The male gave her an inappropriate sniff and sat next to her. She had been accepted. We named her “Rags” (What else?)
That Monday, my wife, Judy, came home from work and told me a tragic story about a woman she had met that day. It was a chance encounter in the lady’s room. The woman’s name was Lucy, and she was crying. My wife asked her if she was okay. The woman usually worked in a different building but had been transferred after her return to work. Her cubicle was only four away from Judy’s office.
Lucy, a twenty-seven-year-old woman, had just returned to work after a month’s leave to grieve the loss of her husband. The couple were on the second day of their honeymoon in England when the husband died of a heart attack. She told Judy that the loneliness hit her like a freight train whenever she returned to the house they had purchased together.
Judy had no sooner finished the story than I said, “Rags isn’t for us. She’s for Lucy.” To this day, I don’t know why I said those words.
The next day Judy took Rags to work. When Lucy saw her, it was love at first sight. Then, when Lucy picked up the cat, Rags snuggled and purred vociferously.
Long story short. Lucy took Rags home that day. A week later, before Lucy could get her cat to the vet, Rags gave birth to 6 kittens. The mother got a clean bill of health, but the vet said the kittens needed drops in their eyes twice a day. Between caring for the newborn kittens’ everyday needs and caring for their health, Lucy was too busy to be lonely.
A few weeks later, she thanked Judy for bringing Rags into her life. She said that Rags would curl up at her side wherever she was, and the mother and kittens slept with her at night.
On top of that, the antics of the kittens made her laugh every day. Finally, she thanked my wife and told her that depression had almost gotten to her. She told Judy that she might have done something drastic if it weren’t for Rags and the kittens. But instead, Rags and the kittens gave her a reason to go on, and her once-empty house was full of life and love.
We left New Jersey shortly after that, so we never heard the end of Lucy’s story. However, I’m sure everything turned out okay because I believe a higher power sent Rags to us and arranged for my wife to meet Lucy.
Rocky looks a lot like the cat we had for many years. She was good company to my wife while I was on the road and in the air. Interesting: If they catch you talking to your furniture, they may lock you up in the loony bin, but it’s perfectly normal to talk to dogs and cats.
We had a similar visitor two years ago. A little black kitten who started hanging out at our back door, then staying in the outdoor doghouse (we built it way back when we had two outdoor dogs), and finally under our back porch, where she cried for over a week until we were able to coax her out to feed her. No idea where she came from or if her mom and possible siblings were still around. My husband said he couldn’t let her starve and she was obviously there to stay. He called her Coco. We had to borrow a live animal trap from a neighbor to take her to get spayed.
Early on, she fell in love with our golden retriever Hayley, who doesn’t share the same affection but has never chased her away. She tolerates Coco and has decided if Coco’s here to stay, it’s alright. They actually play together and even chase each other. She follows Hayley everywhere and if Hayley goes out, Coco wants out too. Coco naps in the dog crate and sleeps as close to Hayley as she can get. She doesn’t like to be picked up but she does let us pet her. She’s also loud and announces her presence when she wants something. She would rather be outdoors so she goes out to hunt and stalk in the mornings and comes in late afternoon to spend the night. We no longer have a mole problem in the yard or a mouse problem in the house. I’ve even seen her watching Hayley dig a hole, and I’ve seen her gift dead moles to Hayley. When I walk Hayley, I try to make sure Coco is inside; otherwise she follows us down the street crying for us to wait.
As for the litter box, she much prefers to go outdoors, but I buy Cedarific litter. It never smells bad (I can’t deal with the scented stuff!), and it’s cheap. Also less messy, in my opinion.
I’m glad you took Rocky in. I’ve always been told it’s the cat who chooses YOU, and in this case it seems to be true!
This is hilarious. Some cats can take over a household. And seeing a little cat cuddling with a big dog, too cute and funny.
Your house sounds like a hopping place. And your sons have a new hero.
What a great ‘feel-good’ story to wake up to!
Cat-rescue stories always make me tear up (we have two sweeties).
I’m so glad Brian and Tank warmed up to Rocky!
Many cats actively seek to win over the ‘non-believer’ . . . :))
Yep… I have MANY stray cat stories! And never regretted taking in any of them! God bless you and your growing fur family!
Cats are great! A combination of affectionate and insouciant!