Brief encounters of the peaceful kind

When I first started doing rescue work, my vet always reprimanded me for allowing new rescues to mix with my own cats. At that time, we were living in the old house and there was no proper way of confining my cats. So, sometimes, all hell broke loose, but luckily (for everyone), there were no calamities resulting from the transmission of any diseases.

There should be at least a 2 week quarantine period, my vet would remind me. I think that involves a 3-metre radius or more, I cannot remember as some pathogens are airborne. And if you constantly bring in new strays, your own cats may have to be vaccinated more often (yearly or biennially). Otherwise, triennial vaccinations can be considered (once in three years). However, our disclaimer holds, so please consult your vet on this.

Now that we have moved to this house, we made sure our inside cats (that would be Bunny & Friends) are confined. I had not expected to adopt anymore new cats. Given my age and available resources, 7 is all I can handle. In fact, it was only 6 but Tabs came 2 weeks before we moved, marched into the house and announced she would be adopting us. She was also incredibly smart in paying her respects to everyone, starting with my husband, Bobby and then to every single cat. Cow and Cleo gave her hell and chased her out. I felt sorry for her as I know she would just end up being a street cat once we moved. So we brought her along.

The thing that did it for me was when I went looking for her one night (after she had been chased out by Cow & Cleo) and found her rummaging through a neighbour’s dustbin and clutching a piece of chicken drumstick bone in her mouth.

Yes, that was Tabs.

The morning Tabs came: http://myanimalcare.org/2011/12/16/a-new-kid-on-the-block-2/ (Tabs came wearing a red collar with a bell. We asked the whole street, and nobody claimed her. After a week, I had her spayed as the vet said she was already 7 months old at that time.)

That’s how she came along with us when we moved shortly after that.

So, everyone inside have had their vaccinations and whatever else is needed. I de-flead them once when we moved here and since then, they have not had any flea problem. That’s the advantage of keeping your cats indoors.

Then, the outside cats started coming to the patio. It started with Rosie, who followed my husband back. Rosie brought Daffodil. Ginger came on his own the day he was bitten by Mr Quack and he sat inside the cage (asking for help). Nursing him for 2 weeks domesticated him totally and now he is as tame and gentle as a lamb. Then came Timmy who was dumped in the middle of the road outside my gate. And later, Vincent whom I strongly believe was left behind when his owner moved away. And you know the rest. Mr G was already a resident in this house before we moved in, so he’s got pribumi status.

The Patio Family remains as community cats, but they are welcome to stay at our patio. Although there are cat-unfriendly neighbours, this place remains relatively safe (it’s low density traffic) as long as the number of cats do not increase.

It has taken me THIS long before allowing the inside and outside cats to meet and make friends at close proximity. All the outside cats have had their double-vaccinations except Daffodil and Heidi. I think Daffodil, being more than 10 years old, should not need it anymore. Heidi is also estimated to be 7-8 years old and we strongly believe she’s already been spayed, hence we guess she may have been vaccinated as well. A booster won’t hurt, but over-vaccination might. So we have to tread carefully here and do what’s best, after consultation with our vet. Sometimes, this may involve choosing the lesser of the two evils. Moreover, we don’t know Heidi’s history at all, so sometimes it is not necessary to fix things. Just leave well enough alone.

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Tabs meets Ginger.

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Tiger approaches…

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Tiger meets Ginger.

I’m not worried about Tabs and Tiger meeting mild-mannered Ginger.

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But Cleo is tricky as she has titan-blood. I was a bit worried…

I’ve seen Cleo whack Cow as well as Bunny. Cleo wins each time and the two titans back away from her.

So, who is the bigger titan?

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Testing, testing…

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 No incident…phew!

No hissing, no snarling…all went well.

I’m relieved!


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