One thing is for sure....Charleston is home to many many cats!
We run into them all them time. Mr. Front Porch (and others who are around me) say I am a "cat magnet" and that they, the kitties---come out of the woodwork to get to me. LOL Not sure if that's true--well, yes I am LOL---maybe it's true.
I've adored cats since I was a tiny girl. I've always loved their rumbling purring, their soft fur, their incredible paws that retract in and out, their swishy long tails, pert ears, and sweet little whiskery faces. Mostly I love their mysteriousness and how they quietly observe things and how once a cat adores you--you are adored all it's life.
I have one purring on my shoulder as I write this. The purring is getting increasingly louder and louder---Beckie must approve what I am writing! LOL Beckie was rescued from a drainage ditch in a seaside town when she was only about six weeks old, and no mommy cat in sight. Our daughter rescued her and another little one the same time, but from different places I think. The agreement was that if she would be responsible for them--she could bring them home.
She brought them home and oh my!---how they ran and climbed and leaped from couch to chair and to windowsill and back!! and up and down the hallway--lively games of chase and run and tag!
I named Beckie from the Dierks Bentley song "Becky was a beauty from south Alabama" --the what was I thinking!? song. I think alot of people also call it "the little white tank top song".(click below to see the fun video)
Little Beckie was the "small one", and her big sister would bully her from time to time. As time went by, Beckie grew bigger and bigger and soon she came into her own and stood up to her sister. But it was plain to see that they loved each other, and when nap time would roll around, there they were, on the bed or one of the chairs, wrapped up in each other's arms (legs, ha ha! LOL)--sleeping soundly, safe and content.
They lived together as sisters for a few years, grew up, as did our daughter--our last one to leave the nest. She could only take one of the "kittens"--we still called them the "kittens", although they were now grown, fully grown, healthy and pretty girls, both spayed and happy and affectionate. I made a half hearted attempt to find tiger striped Beckie a home--we had our own boy kitty to take care of, and a dog too. But one day Beckie and I were playing a game on the sun dappled bed and Beckie said "but we LOVE each other Mommy and I get to stay with you forever, right?"
And........that's the day I always look back on and say that's the day Beckie and I "fell in love" and OF COURSE she stayed with us and she is with us to this day. And of course Beckie "speaks" to me and of course I "understand". ha ha LOL If you are an animal lover, you understand fully what I am talking about.
We meet so many cats all around the city. They all have their own personalities. Many will sit quietly and observe you and usually, if they sense no harm or ill will coming from you, they will allow you to get closer and closer, as this lovely boy did.
I could also tell that he was fine with me taking pictures, but that he wanted me to respect his space and not cause him to have to get up and move, as he was nicely situated on his favorite fence spot, and had his little paws "just so".
This pale yellow kitty has had some rough times. I could see the fear and distrust in his eyes.
This gorgeous blue-grey kitty was out on his nightly neighborhood run-about. I think he probably has a home and makes his "rounds" and then goes home. He looked back at me as if to say "are you coming?--so many interesting things to see and sniff, come along!"
|no collar--stray or not? What do you think?|
This fluffy kitty with the big poufy tail seemed to be on her nightly rounds as well. I think alot of people still "let the cat out at night" and it comes home in the morning. When I see cats out with collars on ALWAYS wonder if the cat has got out by mistake and is roaming, and lost and frightened and needs help....or does the cat just live outside all the time or maybe it goes out at night? You just never know and you can't help them all, and you can't judge people and you can't rescue them all either. (the cats, not the people, LOL)
This yellow kitty I see alot, and always at the same spots. He seems to "own this block". I just don't know if he has a home or not....He appears quite healthy but when he is out so close to cars and their wheels, I worry about him getting hit. He sure appears to be very street smart though.
I don't think this kitty has a home. She was in an abandoned house yard with quite a few other cats.
This kitty was enjoying porch time with her owners and her brothers and sisters. I bet she lives inside.
This kitty was sleeping on the top of a car. I interrupted his nap and he gave me "the look". LOL
Same story with this white cat......she was like "please don't bother me---it's evening nap time!"
These were made different days--I'm pretty sure this is the same yellow kitty from above that I said "owns his block".
I guess "he" could be a "she". What do y'all think?
|Be safe, little kitty. Please don't walk in the street!|
This black and white kitty said "go ahead and get your pictures---then be on your way! I have LOTS OF LONG HAIR and I need to get started grooming it!"
|Pretty white whiskers|
Here's another yellow kitty. He sure is friendly! He and his Siamese pal followed us all the way down the street.
|this one just wants to be left alone!|
|three rings on it's tail!|
I know he looks like he is mean and hissing in this picture--he was only meowing!
There are also alley cats. They're not friendly. They never learned "friendly", or love. They don't have warm, clean beds to sleep in and safe houses to relax in. They fight to survive. So many of them get their supper from the garbage cans of the Charleston restaurants. Since we have so many excellent chefs and seafood specialty spots here, at least maybe some of these cats get food but that of course is small consolation because restaurant food is not formulated for pets and they don't get the medical care they need such as medicine or shots, spaying or neutering. There are some very good programs in different towns where volunteers and vets donate their time and resources to at least gently capture and release--they capture them, take them in for shots and they spay and neuter, let them recover, then take them back. At least they can't keep reproducing that way, and it cuts down on the disease after they've had their immunizations.
click below for more information:
Trap, Neuter, and Return program
Safe cat trapping, Charleston animal society
Diane- the "crazy cat lady"
Some people think that it's cruel and wrong to do this neuter and release program because when the cats come back, they eat birds and reptiles. What do you think?
Kind people sometimes put out food for them. You can see the empty cat food and tuna cans and sometimes a few remnants of dry kitty food scattered about.
This one let me photograph him, then he was "outta there".
I always feel such compassion for the cats who don't have real homes to go home to. I wish for them all to have full tummies, fresh clean water, warm soft beds to sleep in and protection from all the dangers out there, not only the elements and diseases and injuries but the predators that can hurt them. I wish they could all know kind hands that pet them and love in a human's voice and what it feels like to lay curled up in the lap of the person you adore.
Are there feral cats where you live?
Is there a trap neuter and release program where you live?
Are you a cat lover?