Fuzzy Freeloader the feral cat aka Shitty Kitty
I have a rental house on the back of my property. One of my first tenants started feeding this little grey feral kitten. Fine by me, we back up to some woods and feral cats are good for keeping the rats down. As long as the tenant didn’t leave food out and attract rats I’m OK with this. When this tenant moved he helped me find my next tenant. It is a small town, it is a nice little house and I try to keep the rent down so I rarely have to actively look for tenants as the current one will often recommend the place to a friend when they leave.
When my next tenant left he made me promise that the next person would also feed the cat.
Along came Betty (the Buddhist), I explained the deal to her. No pets but you got to feed the feral cat, here is a bag of cat food. Just put some food out once a day and he should be good. His job is to catch vermin. He is not under any circumstances to come in the house. Whatever you do, do not tame him!
Well Betty said she wasn’t really keen on cats but it was a good deal so she would do it. I would pick up a bag of cat food whenever I went to Costco and leave it for Betty. That was until the day Betty informed me that Fuzzy Freeloader, as she had named feral cat, did not like that cat food. Fuzzy preferred this organic, designer food that Betty bought. My answer was “All right, your on your own with that one”. I didn’t think feral cats had preferences.
Next thing I know Fuzzy has a box on the porch. And then there is a heating pad, cause it gets cold you know. Uh-huh. Fuzzy is also being fed twice a day now, and he is getting wet food mixed in with his designer kibble.
I’m not a cat person. What I wanted to know is Fuzzy getting a bit fat? The reason I put up with this is because I figure Fuzzy has a job to do and that is to catch rats. Betty assures me Fuzzy is still keeping up his end of the deal. Hmmm.
Soon Betty is telling me about how verbal Fuzzy is if he isn’t fed by a certain time and how much hair comes off when she brushes him. OK that is it, Fuzzy isn’t feral anymore. I told Betty “You tamed him. He is yours now. When you leave he goes with you”.
Betty is still my tenant and Fuzzy is doing fine. But I wasn’t kidding when she leaves that cat is going with her. I now feed Fuzzy when Betty is gone and he is completely obnoxious. Meowing like all can be, he expects to be fed and will come into the house if I leave the door open while I am preparing his wet cat food. Gross!
I have renamed him. His name is now Shitty Kitty. Shitty Kitty and I put up with each other but there is no love lost between us. He was a great feral cat but now he is just another whiny, useless cat. I think he is getting a bit chunky too.
Side note: SK has been fixed. This is an rural area and we have a feral cat program that will come out, capture the feral cats, neuter them and return them if you want them. Many people keep barn cats around here, but most of us agree that there are more than enough unfixed cats having litters so we try to get them fixed. The reality is more kittens die than survive. The feral cat society notches the ears so you don’t have to catch the feral cat to tell if it has already been fixed.