I got home from work tonight just after dark. I went inside, grabbed the ahi tuna, the shrimp, and a bag of Greenies. No sooner had I sat down on the front step when Sophie approached. She’d never done that. I’ve had to lure her with food trails. Tonight I hadn’t had a chance to get the food out of the container before she arrived. I quickly removed the lid and tossed a chunk of ahi to her. She gulped it down, and stood in front of me, waiting for more.
The next thing I knew, she was accepting piece after piece after piece of tuna, right from my hand. She must have eaten 4 ounces of tuna, taking each piece as I held it out to her. After the tuna was gone, I gave her a shrimp. Apparently she’s no longer so desperately hungry as she wouldn’t eat the shrimp. That’s right, the previously starving little stray turned her nose up at fresh shrimp. And then she walked away around the corner. I thought we were done for the night, so I got up to go in. As I stood, she came back around the corner of the building and meowed at me as she approached. I told her to sit tight, I’d be right back. I popped inside and grabbed a can of Whole Foods albacore tuna (low sodium). I came back out front where Sophie was waiting patiently. I dished out some of the tuna onto a little saucer. She dug in. As she did so I held my hand in front of her nose, holding it still while she got used to it. She seemed a little nervous, but she didn’t run. So I went further and tentatively petted her head as she ate. She moved a few feet away. Seconds later she was back eating the tuna and I was petting her head. When the tuna was gone, she walked a few feet away and began having a bath. Clearly she was beginning to trust me. All in all, excellent progress. We had gotten farther today than we had in a month.
I began to gather the plate and the treats to go in. But Sophie, having had a taste of petting, wasn’t finished. She let out a soft meow and walked back over to me. The next thing I knew it was an all-out love fest. I was stroking her from head to toe and she was literally throwing herself at me. I kept petting her, and she rubbed against me, asking for more. This went on for at least ten minutes. Then I lured her into the garage with more tuna, trying to encourage her to sleep in the box I’d set on its side for her, lined with a yoga blanket. Instead, she walked over to the sheepskin I’d left out for her on the garage floor, and lapped water out of the bowl sitting atop it. She was more nervous in the garage, so I left her, hoping she’d get curious about the tuna I’d put in the box and decide to sleep inside after she ate it. The garage is warm. It’s a lovely cozy spot. But she sleeps somewhere else, and I’ve no idea where.
It was very difficult to leave her outside tonight. Clearly she was someone’s pet. She is so sweet and affectionate! But will she learn to love Sadie and Sally? Will Sadie and Sally learn to love Sophie? Will she turn our routine upside down? What if they don’t get along? I’m going to have to find her a good home. She is such a sweet kitty. I really hope the three fluffy black cats can learn to live in peace and harmony. She deserves a good home and to be well-loved.
I aim to have photographic evidence off the petting by the end of the three-day weekend.
Kitty got lots of petting! What a great evening for us both!