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How to Deal with a Stray Cat


For seventeen years we had more than one cat. Counting strays who lived in our yard, at one time we had a total of eight cats (!), only three of which lived indoors. We were sure that stray cats put symbols in front of our house, much as hobos had done, to let other strays know that we were a soft touch. There are far fewer strays in our current neighborhood.

Almost three years ago when the two cats we had had the longest died within a few months of each other, we found ourselves without any pets. A little over two years ago our vet contacted us to let us know she had a really nice cat that needed a good home, and she thought of us. We weren't sure we were ready to have a cat again in our lives at that time, but we caved and Buddy became a part of our household. (Did I mention that we were a soft touch?)

During many of the years we had multiple cats, our kids were still living at home. Therefore there was lots going on and the cats got plenty of attention. When Buddy joined us, we were empty-nesters, and he has found life with two quiet oldsters a little boring, we fear. With that boredom came some behavioral issues. So we took out a "loaner" cat from The Cat Clinic to see if having a companion would improve his behavior. So far the two cats are on friendly terms and seem to be adjusting well.

Unnamed Cat

We still haven't come up with a name for the new little cat but are considering some having to do with mustaches. To me, he looks like a little Frenchman. We're open to suggestions. Several that we like are Poirot...

Hercule Poirot

... and Jacques (in case you don't recognize the face, it's Inspector Jacques Clouseau from the Pink Panther series).

Jacques

Any votes for either of those, or other great suggestions? If we keep this little guy, we need just the right name to go with that mustachioed face. Among already rejected names are Hitler and Kitler. :*)

Although our loaner cat had a home prior to ours, we've been told that he was originally a stray kitty who ended up at an animal shelter. That made me think of something I had in my files — rules for dealing with stray cats.

Strict, unbending rules for dealing with stray cats

1. Stray cats will not be fed.

2. Stray cats will not be fed anything except dry cat food.

3. Stray cats will not be fed anything except dry cat food moistened with a little milk.

4. Stray cats will not be fed anything except dry cat food moistened with warm milk, yummy treats, and leftover fish scraps.

5. Stray cats will not be encouraged to make this house their permanent residence.

6. Stray cats will not be petted, played with or picked up and cuddled unnecessarily.

7. Stray cats that are petted, played with, picked up and cuddled will absolutely not be given a name.

8. Stray cats with or without a name will not be allowed inside the house at any time.

9. Stray cats will not be allowed inside the house except at certain times.

10. Stray cats will not be allowed inside the house except on days ending in "y".

11. Stray cats allowed inside will not be permitted to jump up on or sharpen their claws on the furniture.

12. Stray cats will not be permitted to jump up on, or sharpen claws on the really good furniture.

13. Stray cats will be permitted on all furniture but must sharpen claws on new $114.99 sisal-rope cat-scratching post with three perches.

14. Stray cats will answer the call of nature outdoors in the sand.

15. Stray cats will answer the call of nature in the three-piece, high-impact plastic tray filled with Fresh'n'Sweet kitty litter.

16. Stray cats will answer the call of nature in the hooded litter pan with a three-panel privacy screen and plenty of head room.

17. Stray cats will sleep outside.

18. Stray cats will sleep in the garage.

19. Stray cats will sleep in the house.

20. Stray cats will sleep in a cardboard box lined with an old blanket.

21. Stray cats will sleep in the special Kitty-Komfort-Bed with a non-allergenic lamb's wool pillow.

22. Stray cats will not be allowed to sleep in our bed.

23. Stray cats will not be allowed to sleep in our bed, except at the foot.

24. Stray cats will not be allowed to sleep in our bed under the covers.

25. Stray cats will not be allowed to sleep in our bed under the covers except at the foot.

26. Stray cats will not play on the desk.

27. Stray cats will not play on the desk near the computer.

28. Stray cats are forbidden to walk on the computer keyboard on the desk when the human is sdfjjhhkl;ljfd.;oier' puyykmm4hbdm9lo9j USING IT.

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You will notice that I am back to having two cats =^..^= =^..^= in my signature line below. 🙂

quotation...

"Wisdom is the ability to navigate life well." — Steve Pettit

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

Thousands of years ago, cats were worshiped as gods. Cats have never forgotten this.


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13 Comments on “How to Deal with a Stray Cat”

  1. #1 Shannah
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 7:13 am

    I like Jacques. 🙂 Just don’t wait too long… I knew it was time to settle on a name when my dog (before Sanders) started answering to “Dog.” That’s how he became McDog.

  2. #2 Rhonda
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 8:14 am

    I prefer Jacques, simply because it’s easier to say, but I don’t live in a French speaking household! 🙂 If your kitty never seems to answer to the name you choose, you might try “Whimsey”–he just might respond to that one!

  3. #3 Jonathan
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 8:52 am

    Clouseau prided himself for his cat like agility when fighting Cato.

  4. #4 Cindy Page
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 10:56 am

    What about Charlie as in Charlie Chaplin the mustache looks alike 🙂

  5. #5 Johnsons
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 11:00 am

    We LOVE Poirot! but he would be immediate in telling you he is Belgian, not French. He must be a clever cat for you to consider either name!

  6. #6 Don Ross
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 11:25 am

    As a child in Arizona, we had a cat with similar markings–we named him Hitler. Hitler owned us, we didn’t own him. He would disappear for about 6 months, then came back, for awhile. when he wanted to.

  7. #7 Megan K.
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 12:53 pm

    I vote Poirot! I’m racking my brain for any famous actors/characters with a Van Dyke beard (which is what I see on your cat).

  8. #8 Paul K.
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 1:35 pm

    What’s wrong with “Cat”? If you must name it go with a good name like “Spot” or “Rover”.

  9. #9 Marty Nelson
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 6:37 pm

    Magnum….the 80’s private eye.

  10. #10 Jackie
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 9:07 pm

    I suggest “Maigret”.

  11. #11 Elaine Carr
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 9:25 pm

    Thanks for “How To Deal With A Stray Cat”. I laughed and laughed as I read through it.

  12. #12 Michael H.
    on Sep 16th, 2015 at 9:39 pm

    We had a stray cat come to us during a 50,000 acre fire that hit our area about 21 years ago. This cat had a similar mustache, so we named him Charlie for Charlie Chaplin. Your article describes him very well as he soon stole our hearts and became a lazy house cat with privileges.

    Rob adds:
    Michael sent me a picture of Charlie to post in this comment. It’s amazing how much he and our new cat look alike.

    picture of Charlie

  13. #13 deb holman
    on Sep 17th, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    Dan and I came up with Charlie Chaplain or Groucho Marx. I also thought Hitler was a good one! 🙂 Jackie Gleason?