Who says an adult cat can’t change his spots?
That’s how it worked out for Spot. When a new cat shows up at the feeding station on the porch, he doesn’t typically have a note with his resume so you know his story. Even formerly pet cats can build up their defenses to where they seem unsocialized, and still living on the streets it’s difficult to see past that exterior. That’s why it’s always a happy story when a cat who seemed determined to live his life of violence and debauchery sheds his exterior of a fierce fighter and becomes a cuddling love bug—and heads off on his way to a loving forever indoor home.
Spot showed up at the feeding station on Peg’s front porch as a fully-grown but still young cat just before Christmas 2016. Peg hadn’t seen him before that and in the intervening time didn’t find out anything about his past. Although he was obviously familiar with people and with cat food, he was very skittish and somewhat elusive.
Peg has been feeding on her front porch for years and rescued and TNR’d cats from that vantage point, so Spot joined the crew. Spot was always ravenously hungry, eating one and sometimes two whole cans of food at one sitting. A relatively young guy and very muscular he regularly got into fights and usually won but bore the scars of those battles. Peg had actually seen him stand up on his hind legs and box other cats, quite the show tomcat. “His wonky eye is a leftover from one of those fights and it will probably always be a little wonky,” Peg remarked.
It took her about a year to gain his trust and in that time, though still skittish, proved to be friendly though hard to catch. Peg took in another “porch cat”, Sam, to foster in October, and in time Spot began sleeping on the porch Sam had vacated. When he showed up January 20 limping with a paw injury, Peg called the vet for an appointment.
Not sure how Spot would react to being handled he was trusting enough by that time to get into a carrier and come in the house three days later. “As it turned out, on the big day, Spot offered no resistance whatsoever, not even a meow!” Peg said. “He is soooo ready to be somebody’s cuddle-kitty. He doesn’t like being held but when I lie down he loves to curl up next to me and purr, and he can’t get enough of being petted.”
Spot was in Peg’s foster room through a course of antibiotics for his paw injury and treatments for his eyes, and proved easy enough to handle, considering his recent lifestyle. He was also sharing that room with Sam, the senior spayed female former foster Peg had taken in from the porch the previous October. The two cats had some differences, but Spot proved a gentleman, keeping his cool, as Peg observed the two and managed their living arrangements to keep the peace.
Now, two months after the big day of his coming inside, Spot is all spiffed up and living at a cat rescue Peg volunteers with waiting to find his human match.
So the fierce tomcat turned out to be a real softie after all. Likely someone’s pet who was left behind or roamed to far and no one cared to look for him, Spot made the best of his situation.
The best part is when humans take the time to see beyond that rough exterior and see the living creature underneath, and are there to rescue cats like Spot. And there’s another orange tom out on the porch who’s looking ready to come in now too.
Read other stories in my Rescue Stories series on The Creative Cat.
Gifts featuring cats you know! Visit Portraits of Animals
Great Rescues Day Book:
Portraits, Rescue Stories, Holidays and Events, Essential Feline Information, All in One Book
Each month features one of my commissioned portraits of a feline or felines and their rescue story along with a kitty quote on the left page, and on the right page the month name with enough lines for all possible dates, with standard holidays and animal-themed observances and events. Great Rescues also includes a mini cat-care book illustrated with my drawings including information on finding strays or orphaned kittens, adopting for the first time or caring for a geriatric cat, a list of household toxins and toxic plants, or helping stray and feral cats and beginning with TNR.
Each book includes also 10 sheets of my “22 Cats” decorative notepaper with a collage of all the portraits in black and white so you can make your own notes or write special notes to friends.
The portraits in this book, collected as a series, won both a Certificate of Excellence and a Muse Medallion in the 2011 Cat Writers’ Association Annual Communication Contest, as well as the 22 Cats Notepaper mentioned below.
All images and text used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission, although links to your site are more than welcome and are shared. Please ask if you are interested in using and image or story in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of an image or a product including it, check my animal and nature website Portraits of Animals to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.
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Weekly schedule of features:
Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life
Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters
Tuesday: Rescue Stories
Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork
Thursday: New Merchandise
Friday: Book Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy
Saturday: Your Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Living Green With Pets, Creating With Cats
And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun! —