I'm pretty sure that among stray cats there are whispers and secret maps leading them directly to our house. They show up on our porch, throw a few cute looks, beg for food and will us to take them in. Basically, they think (know) we are suckers.
It all started the month before Hubby and I got married. I came home from work late one night. Hubby had a strange look on his face, a look I would later realize was him suppressing laughter. I headed upstairs to change and was greeted by a surprising sight: a small kitten with ears too big for his head. My response? "Who are you?!" Earlier in the day we had experienced a typical midwest heatwave. Hubby had the front windows open to our townhouse. Our cats Hootie and Elwood were relaxing in the windows, trying to find a breeze. Hubby noticed Elwood was irritated by something. Hubby went outside and found a kitten under the window trying to play with Elwood through the screen. Hubby hung out with the kitten for awhile. When the kitten wouldn't leave and started panting in the heat, Hubby gave him water and food. He still wouldn't leave. Hubby made the decision to take the kitten inside to the air conditioning because it was HOT, HOT, HOT outside. For the next few days he played outside with the kitten, hoping a neighbor would claim him. Sebastian has been with us ever since.
A few months later, a black kitten showed up on our porch. She wouldn't leave. She would wail outside our door until Hubby would go outside and give her attention. We might have been convinced to take her in, after all, we only had three cats at that point, but the second she saw one of our cats she hissed and swatted. Hubby took her to the shelter in hopes that she could find a loving family.
Soon after that we moved to a different state and spent a year in an apartment. No unexpected visitors that I can remember. Then it happened. We built a house, found a new vet and out of the blue... the vet realized we are suckers. She called us because a client brought her a cat that had been hit by a car. He was fine but needed a home. Naturally she thought of the suckers who already owned three cats. No way, I said. Then, somehow, Hubby convinced me to go meet the cat. Morton has been with us for approximately six years.
At four cats I put my foot down. Hubby and I got our fix by volunteering at an animal shelter. Unfortunately, we would compare notes at home and we each loved the same cats. There is a female cat named Isabelle that I still think about. She was the sweetest, cuddliest cat ever. If we didn't already have four cats she would probably have joined our family. Unfortunately, the sweet little thing couldn't have stood up to our "manly" boys. She was eventually adopted, which makes me happy.
We've gone a few years with no visitors. And now.... there's a cat that is just BEGGING to join our family. He shows up every night when Hubby comes home from work. Sucker...oops, I mean Hubby, gives him food and water. (You can argue that he wouldn't show up if Hubby didn't feed him, but how do you turn away a hungry animal. Sorry, it's not going to happen). The cat scarfs it down. He's declawed, which annoys me. I'm not annoyed that he's declawed. I'm annoyed that someone either abandoned a declawed cat (a possible scenario because the juvenile delinquent who shot out our window with a BB gun and his family just moved out and it wouldn't surprise me if they left their cat behind) or lets their declawed cat stay out all night to go against coyotes. I refuse to have anything to do with this cat. One of us has to be strong and say no. Yes, we had to put Elwood down last year, so we "only" have three cats... but three is enough. Unfortunately, the cat was sitting on our porch when I left for work yesterday morning. He's cute. Still, I'm standing strong. Go find another sucker. (Actually, if he shows up again Hubby is going to try to crate him to take him to the shelter and see if he's microchipped. Keep your fingers crossed).
Oh, and if he moves on to another family of suckers I'm hoping he will take the SNAKE that was sunning itself on our sidewalk yesterday afternoon with him. I would be forever grateful. If he shows up on our porch with the snake dead in his mouth, heck, I might even agree to take him in!
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