For more than 3 months, a stray cat has been living in our neighbourhood. He steals food from pet cats, terrorises my chickens and stalks about looking skittish whenever he sees me. Maybe because I always yell at him and chase him away from my chooks.
The stray’s luck changed sometime in the past few weeks. One of my neighbours has taken to feeding the poor kitty and it turns out that he’s a pretty nice cat. My chickens might not agree, but he is kind of a sweetie. Our neighbour named him Adler, after Irene Adler from the Sherlock Holmes stories. She has 2 pet cats named Holmes and Watson and she thought Adler was a she, so this name choice made sense.
After a bit of discussion with our neighbours, Frank and I decided we needed to do something before Adler was dumped at the RSPCA (he really was a problem since he didn’t have a true home). That something involved us taking Adler to the vet where we discovered: a) he was a he (whew, no kittens then) b) he was desexed (obviously even I could have determined he was a he if he hadn’t been desexed) c) he is a healthy 1-2 year old cat, and d) he wasn’t microchipped – which is mandatory here.
So, Frank & I had a microchip shot into him (ouch) and filled out the paperwork and, before you could say, “Elementary, my dear” Frank and I became the proud owner of Adler.
Since we’re moving in about 3 weeks, the vet agreed with us that Adler’s conditions shouldn’t change until we move. Which means he’ll continue living on our neighbour’s back porch and we’ll pop over for visits to get him used to us. We’ll take him out to Richmond once we’ve moved in and lock him inside for 2 weeks to get settled (he’ll hate that). In Richmond we’ll get him all the necessary injections and hopefully train him to come in at night to spare the wildlife the worst of his destruction (my main beef with cats).
I’m hoping he learns to love us and that he becomes a fat, lazy cat. Happy fat, not unhealthy fat, and just lazy enough to sit on our lap in the evening, watching TV, but with enough energy to play with us.
No, I haven’t told the chickens yet. They will be none too pleased. But I’m confident we can work it out so we all live together in harmony. The cat and chooks have been in our garden together in the past week, more than once, and beyond some suspicious looks, all is well. Long may that state reign!