Friday, June 01, 2012

Tabbies get testy as handsome guest steals owner's heart

Image: This duo has nothing to do with the cats in the story but they are in fact my family's cats and the picture was too nice to leave hidden in the archives.

FOUR years have passed since a lovely little story about a man, a mother cat and her cute newborn kittens graced the news pages of The Redland Times. Today, here's chapter two:

ENGINEER Richard Cooke had to cut into a Capalaba factory wall to extract the feline family, after the stray cat he had been feeding found the safest spot for her nursery. Richard still has the tabby mother as his 'factory cat', while two of her offspring keep Richard and his wife Loren company at their Thornlands home. Some intense cat politics has ruled at Thornlands in recent weeks, however, since a handsome black desexed male arrived as a guest.

THE two tabbies with a family history of 'doing it tough' don't appreciate other paws on their patch. Loren has had to juggle some animal instincts with diplomacy to ensure the claws don't come out. She has fallen in love with the guest and calls him Onyx. But the tabbies are getting testy; her search for Onyx's owner is getting desperate.

"HE was wandering the neighbourhood for four weeks before my neighbour caught him in a trap; she was on her way to the pound with him but he's such a beautiful, beautiful cat; I said I would look after him and try to locate his owner," Loren says. "Even when he was in the trap you could put your fingers through the wires and stroke him."

THREE weeks later and after advertising widely, Loren is wondering when and how this cat tale will end. She says she has spent more than $200 on Onyx, who now has a microchip because Loren was worried that he might escape again. "The vet reckons he's been through a hell of a time; he's between two and four years old but probably closer to two, and he might not have lasted much longer fending for himself," Loren says. "It seems he was only just surviving around the creek near our home and raiding the garbage; his fur was matted and mud was stuck to him. He's still skin and bones but he's recovering and he's fluffing up nicely."

LOREN has seen heartbreak during her hunt for the owner: "A poor woman came all the way from Forest Lake hoping he was her cat. She was in tears because he looked so much like hers. I suggested that she could adopt him but she said her children loved their missing cat too much to present them with another."

LOREN's Lost & Found notice seeks "person willing to give him a new home urgently".

Thanks for joining me in the marvellous community of classified advertising. This column has appeared in The Redland Times.

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