I've mentioned my little cat friend a couple times. She was released, along with two other kittens way before I started boarding here. Whatever your opinions are about it, I know I feel for her. She's all alone, I don't see other cats and she's never been spayed. This past summer she had kittens, so at least a Tom Cat has been in the area. The last few nights I've seen her lurking around Dani and I's stall. She would stand about 10-15 feet away and watch me getting hay, feeding supplements and mucking the stall. I would talk with her and glance over. She didn't seem overly afraid but she sure kept her eyes wide open and watched me.
Behind my hay bales is where I've kept a bowl of dry food for her and haven't really tried to interact with her much but recently since I've seen her showing up more I've decided I'll call out to her, "Little Miss Stubs" and feed her wet food when I see her. She's come by upon hearing my voice, not knowing her name of course just knowing that I'm there....she's curious. Hopefully she'll associate the food more with me and begin to trust me. Now that it's getting cold I put a nice little round bed near her dry food in the safe area behind the hay. She'll be out of the wind and hopefully cozy if she chooses to sleep there.
I need to get her spayed and vaccinated; that's a definite. El Paso County has had their first rabid cat since 1966 just recently. That was in Fountain but I know that rabies of the skunk variety has been steadily moving west from Kansas since 2008. We've always had bat rabies but that hasn't concerned livestock and pet owners as much as the skunk rabies we have now.
A co-worker told me he once took in a feral cat that broke his leg. He trapped him in a live trap and gave him vet care and let him recover in a large cage at his house. Eventually that cat became really friendly and now has chosen to be their indoor cat. Cats sometimes choose you huh? I don't want to necessarily make Stubs an indoor cat, I think she likes her freedom but I want to be her companion and give her veterinary care. There are trap/neuter/release programs that I can get a trap from and then get her spayed and vaccinated. They usually release them right away but with the cold I'd feel bad that Stubs would have a shaved belly exposed! I think the plan is to trap her, get her veterinary care and then set her up in a cage in our spare bedroom for a couple weeks. My hubby is on board with this plan :-)
During that time hopefully she'll adjust to humans and begin to trust me even more. Then I can bring her back to the barn, re-acclimate her and have a little furry friend to care for in addition to my 950 lb friend. I definitely am growing attached to her, if I leave to a new barn or buy my own place I'll be taking her with me, I'm pretty decided on that. No one else here seems to worry about her too much, I'm afraid if I left her she'd starve to death. The gal that released the kittens is no longer here, and obviously doesn't feed anymore. Stubs is an unclaimed stray but seems like she could become a nice little pet. She deserves some love I think! When I go home and look at my little cat Armani, curled up in my lap or running through the house bouncing off walls I realize how lucky he is and how so many cats aren't so blessed. Hopefully I can share the love...