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Tommy

Thomas showed up at my place about two weeks ago seeking a home. I'm fairly certain that he was someone's house cat (probably one of a litter) who had been dumped by the road side. One of my neighbours has about a dozen cats; apparently people assume that they could use a few more and dump their unwanted cats in these parts.

Thomas, however, picked my place as his future home and me as his future provider. He kept showing up, trying to get into the house and trying to get me to feed him. I checked with the neighbours. He wasn't theirs and they didn't want him. I shooed him away. To be honest, I didn't want him either.

He didn't give up. I don't blame him. It was winter and the weather was cold. Unless he could find a sucker, er, provider his prospects were very poor.

Once of an evening Deborah was visiting when Thomas tried to invade and dine. Deborah said, you can't let that poor little kitten starve in the cold. My heart was not sufficiently hardened so I gave in and put some food out for him - outside mind you. I knew it was a mistake to feed him, but at least I wasn't going to let him in the house.

When the evening had waned Deborah returned to her house and I retired to the office to do tippety tap things on the computer. I heard a noise, a very cat meowing like noise. I got up and looked out the window. There, spread eagled, was the cat plastered across the screen with his face pressed against the window, meowing with all his might.

Oh, shoot.

I gave up. I put some milk in a dish and set it in the garage. I called to him and he made a mad dash across the snow banks to the food dish where he inhaled the milk.

I didn't let him in the house that night, but I let him stay in the garage. It isn't heated but it is attached to the house and is quite a bit warmer than outdoors. It was clear, however, that I had already surrendered and was about to be acquired by a cat.

The next day I purchased the requisites, cat food and kitty litter. I couldn't find a litter box but I improvised. I called the vet and made arrangements to get all of his shots and schedule his operation.

Our Lady of the Large Black Dog took pity upon me and procured a litter box for me. Incidentally Bridger and Thomas get along fine - they ignore each other.

One thing that convinced me that he had been a house cat is that he teleports to the can opener whenever I open a can.

Thomas has settled in quite nicely. He is sitting in my lap and purring as I type this. The one thing that he does not get that he wants is to sleep in my bed with me. There are limits. However he ambushes me when I get up in the middle of the night. He settles for being petted a bit on the way, but what he really wants me to do is to lead him to his food dish. Apparently he forgets where it is during the middle of the night. At least that is the story he is putting out, but I am not convinced of his veracity. Maybe food tastes better if there is someone sharing the experience.

His operation went off as scheduled. His genetic contribution to the next generation has been, ah, cut short.

For his first week or so, Thomas stayed in the house. I've let him out a few times and will encourage him to spend a lot of time outdoors in good weather. I am not sure that this is a good idea. The first time I let him out to wander a bit he climbed into a tree and had to be rescued.


This page was last updated April 3, 2010.

Richard Harter's World
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April 2010
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