Friday, June 20, 2014
Because I am a softie...
My friend, Liz, and I were walking last night. We passed a farm that is about 1/2 mile from my home and saw that a cute little gray kitten was leaping and bounding after us. I took that little kitten back to the farm three times. Three times. But she persisted in following us. I knocked on the door, and no one answered. Knowing that it is not uncommon at all for farms to be home to a multitude of kittens and stray cats, I figured it was probably a drop-off kitten.
We quickened our pace and darted away from the farm, but she was relentless in her pursuance of us. Here she comes, bounding behind us, meowing the whole way. "Wait up for me!!!" she was saying.
She followed us past the farm perimeter, and so I picked her up and carried her the short distance home. (This is the part where you realize how big of a softie I am.) I could not stand the thought of this helpless little kitten getting smooshed on the road, and that seemed to be an inevitable occurrence if I did not rescue her from the peril known as an old country road.
I got home with her. I must say that Brad wasn't overly surprised. He knows his wife's soft spot towards all kinds of animals very well. But, he was right, we couldn't keep her. He insisted that I not call Lily out of the house. I insisted that I must since she has been asking me to see a neighbor's farm kittens for several weeks and we hadn't made it out there.
Brad was right. Lily was enamored. And attached. And she screamed and cried a holy fit when Brad told her that we couldn't keep her and he was taking her back to the farm. So in the truck he got with Lucy (Liz and I had affectionately named her on the way home. I know, one of the worst things to do ~ name a cat you can't keep.)
I got a phone call about 15 minutes later.
"Amber, did you take that kitten back?" It was my sister. She had known about my little kitten rescue as she was leaving for a walk as Liz and I were returning home with the kitten.
"Yes, Brad drove it back to the farm," I replied.
"Well, now it's following Ashley and I, and we're running from it. It won't stop following us," she said.
So Lucy followed my sisters home.
Here she was again. But, oh, we can't keep her. My dad is severely allergic to cats (as in his throat swells shut) which means he'd never be able to come to our home if we had a house cat. Plus, some of our neighbors are known to take out any cats that wander onto their property. And, let's face it, barn cats wander. It's the nature of the beast.
So we took Lucy in for the night. Lily was so excited. We had a dog kennel that we made cozy with a flannel blanket and put her in for the night. Lily went to sleep thinking of any potential families that would make a good home for Lucy. (And I think she also went to sleep contriving ways to coerce Brad into letting her keep her.)
This morning, I made a few phone calls to some potential homes. No luck, really. We drove to the farm and, thankfully, the farm owner was there today. He told us we could keep her, that his dad had found her wandering through town and brought her out to his farm. I told him we couldn't. I told him we really wanted to, but we really couldn't keep her.
He put her in the lower barn. She escaped and came after us. He put her in the upper barn. He left. We were getting in the car to leave, and here comes Lucy. Bounding through the grass, meowing, I swear, begging us not to leave her. She went under our vehicle and sat there meowing. I fished her out, told the kids to get buckled. I had to make a fast getaway. I ran her back to the upper barn, left a yarn toy there that we had made her, she dashed after the toy, and I made a mad dash to the car.
But as we were pulling out, there she was again. Our little Lucy. Sitting outside of the barn. Watching us pull away. I wanted to cry.
I've seen plenty of barn cats. They are stand-offish, independent, like to be left alone. Lucy is not meant to be a barn cat. She wants a human. I want to find her a family. Do you want to be Lucy's family?
I left. I stopped at my friend's house to see if she wanted a kitten. Ironically, they had just gotten two house kittens. Ugh. Too late. We left there, and I looped back to the farm to make sure Lucy wasn't gallivanting on the road. We didn't see her. I pray that she stays away from the road.
See, I am a big softie. I would keep every animal if I could. Or at least try to re-home them. I hope Lucy finds a good home. Or at least starts to feel at home in the barn and stays off the road. But really, in my heart, what I really want is to give Lucy a home here.