At what point does a cat become a pet - even if it isn't an indoor Kid like the other two four-legged children we have? Perhaps when you start calling him by name? Boots. DH and I are calling him Boots.
I knew this cat was out there. He's been hanging around for a while, now. He even wandered through the back yard - right in front of the window - and right in front of the Kids last week. [He is one brave cat. Thought for sure that The Baby was going to go through the window after him!] I've heard the cat fighting with other cats - there is a calico one out there too - although I've not seen that one in the last week or so...
Anyway, because I cannot stand to see a very, very skeletal-thin animal, I started putting food out. Could not help myself. I don't want for ANY animal to go hungry. People? Not my problem about all the starving people in Africa [or anywhere else, for that matter]. Animals, on the other hand... And, like I said, DH and I started calling him by name. So I'm feeding "Boots."
So, yesterday I told DH that Saturday morning I was going to call and borrow the have-a-heart trap again and see if we couldn't get him - and deliver him to the shelter here, PAWS, to have him get the basic shots and get him neutered - after which, PAWS then releases the animals back to the "wild." At least they can't continue procreating and making more little kitties who will be hungry out there on their own. DH said, "No. You're not doing that again just because you hate cats." How awful of him to say that! I don't hate cats. We had cats for years. I just happen to prefer dogs.
I don't know how I am going to handle this whole thing. As far as my two Kids are concerned, cats are for chasing and barking at. Little do either of them realize that a wild cat would tear their little snouts apart like a buzz-saw! My Goodness! The Boy would require major stitches with his "little snout." He wouldn't know what hit him. I can see it now. That dazed and confused look. "What just happened?" The Baby on the other hand, she's quite a bit more agile and much more ferocious. She'd put up a good fight - then both The Baby and Boots would require vet care.
The other part of the problem is that we are only allowed two four-legged children per household on our compound. So even if I wanted to get Boots vet care, here, I can't. Which does not address the problem of worm medication [is that why he's so thin?], or rabies shots, or neutering him. No idea what I am going to do at this point. Other than keep feeding him.
Last night we had salmon for dinner. When I cook salmon I make enough for six. I will eat it cold for a couple of days - or make salmon salad [just add celery and some Miracle Whip] and eat it like that. And, of course with so much left over there is enough for "treats." The Kids luv luv luv it. I suspect Boots did too. Can't give it to two Kids and not the third, right? So what that right now he is only a "foster" Kid. Since I started putting food out, he has not wandered far from our yard. He will not let either DH or I near him - well not near enough to pet him. At this point though, he doesn't even move from sunning himself when I take food out, whereas when I first started taking food our for him he would race off like something awful was going to happen immediately. He lays in his little lair in the bushes when I take clean water out. [Of course I'm giving him fresh water twice a day! Along with cat food. Little bags of fish or turkey or beef or whatever it is in those pouches that you rip open and pour into a bowl. And dry cat food at night. Something crunchy to keep his teeth clean.] Not that not petting him is a bad thing. I'm sure he is flea infested. [Yikes! He needs that flea treatment stuff, too. If he is going to be an outdoor cat... And, certainly if he is ever to become an indoor cat.]
Why!?! WHY!?? Why did the cat have to come to our house? I know the answer to that. And so do all of the other stray animals out there. Someday, after we leave here, I'm going to do rescue work. Probably for certain breeds. Rottweilers. Great Danes. Poodles. Will there be adoptions for the rescues that I take in? Sure there will be. I will adopt them all!