Never Fear ~~ just gopher snakes. They are welcome here, where we are plagued by the blasted rodents, that have been known to take down 5′ tall sunflowers and small trees. In the last 26 years, we have seen only a few gopher snakes… about 3 or 4 feet long and very skinny. But in the span of 2 weeks recently, our cats have drawn our attention to HUGE gopher snakes! This one climbed the fence to avoid our cats, who were on both sides. Couldn’t believe it pulled itself up on the fence, and stayed there for quite some time. We think that the first one is bigger than the second one we saw, although it was in the same area. What amazed us was that they climbed so high off the ground, over 12 feet into the trees!
No longer sequestered to the spare bathroom, Lottie is nosy and curious… and keeps up on what’s going on throughout the household 24/7. She has had all her shots and has been spayed, and is very active, healthy and happy. Although she has access to the great outdoors, and loves to stalk birds and hunt for gophers, she stays inside more often lately, following Shelly around like a dog. She plays well with the other pets (for the most part), and likes to bathe and snuggle with them. A former TP shredder, she still loves to bite paper and cardboard. This box is super-fun! It was so cute when she discovered the fish in the TV tank.
Sharing the heating pad with Rose. Her little tummy looks like a parker house roll where they shaved her. Interesting how her feet are white like Rose, but all of her pads are black instead of pink.
This tiny little kitten survived more than three week living in the rose bushes in the median…in the middle of a busy parking lot. Obviously dumped there, it never ventured far. After sitting on the curb trying to catch it with a can of cat food for hours, we set a live trap and captured it. Starving and traumatized… it stayed in our spare bathroom for a week before we could hold it. She checked out at the vet a few days later and we decided to keep her and name her Lottie for her harrowing adventure. Three weeks later, she is super lovey dovey, purring instead of hissing and growling and she is silky soft and healthy. She is slowly getting introduced to the rest of the house and our other pets…and has already wormed her way into our heart. She has a wonderful life ahead of her as an indoor/outdoor cat in the country. Stay tuned for more Lottie adventures…
It’s been a year and a half and Buddy has grown up. He weighs 10 lbs and spends his day patrolling the grounds. He comes in and out of the cat door like he owns the joint, snacking on cat food at all hours. He knows the routine and is right there when it’s time to drink out of the hot tub or go for a walk (he likes to go along). Every time we come home, he is there to meet us in the driveway. He kept the squirrels from eating all the apples last year and dead rats/mice/gophers turn up regularly (at least part of them turn up). Our other cat, Rose, has even accepted him as part of the crew now.
Buddy Boy the cat catches lizards constantly. As a result, most of the lizards around here have really short tails. They fall off pretty easily when you grab them, and I’ve found tail tips, still writhing around on the patio. He prefers alligator lizards over the smaller, typical fence variety (maybe because their tails are tougher?). So it was easy to guess who must have brought this one inside through the cat door. It was climbing the screen, looking for a way out, while the coast was clear. We escorted him safely back out to the wild.
All grown up now, Buddy is curious and full of energy. Proven to be a good hunter, he has caught 1 mole, 7 mice, 1 gopher and a small garter snake so far. Every morning he hops up onto the edge of the hot tub to get a drink as I’m having my coffee, and then he and Reo chase each other around the yard. Great way to start each day!
This is the view out the kitchen window. Yesterday, Buddy was walking along the brick flowerbed. His face lit up when he saw me washing dishes, and he hopped over to the wood shelf and tried to jump through the window. I saw his face smash flat as it hit the window, and then he leaped up a few feet after he landed on the cactus below. Poor guy… those thorns are really sharp! A few weeks ago, he ran into the patio door a time or two before learning that he can’t go through glass. This was lesson #2.
Buddy enjoys watching the fish in the TV tank. He tapped the glass a few times at first before he realized it was that see through stuff again called glass.
Buddy really wants to wrestle around with Rose, but she’s not interested. They behave through the glass or screen door. But together, Buddy starts pawing her and Rose hisses and howls and runs away. Buddy likes to be outside most of the time, and sleeps in the garage, but soon he will figure out the cat door and Rose will have to teach him some manners. Should be interesting…
It’s been 1 month since this kitten showed up on our doorstep, and we’re crazy about him. He’s been busy hunting (lizards – his current specialty). Bought him some fake mice, but they keep ending up on Reo‘s bed…covered with slobber.Â Found him in the garage today having his way with a recently trapped gopher that I had ‘disposed of’. He’s shaping up to be a better hunter than our current cat Rose, and just might earn his keep around here patrolling rodents.
Our new best ‘Buddy’ is getting healthy and is really starting to play and explore like you would expect from a kitten his age (about 3 months). He’s very interested in the chickens and was checking out the dog yard while I was hanging sheets on the line. Although his weird eye is unchanged, his markings are beautiful and from the back he looks like a raccoon. I was watching him climb the oak tree and romp around, when he started stalking something. I could barely see a leaf moving on the ground and then he pounced, sticking his paw into the dirt. I checked the spot, and found a big hole. I was very excited to see him demonstrate classic gopher hunting skills at such a young age. We could really use his help controlling the varmits!
Our dog, Reo, was barking at something in her dog yard last Wednesday night as we were going to bed. This kitten was sitting there in the dark, bold as could be, unafraid of the barking dog. When I went outside, it ran up to me, meowing, rubbing up against my legs. Obviously tame, I thought it was one of the strays that my neighbor feeds and scooted it out of the yard and closed the gate. But it didn’t leave… I could hear it outside my bedroom window until I fell asleep, and at the crack of dawn it was at the sliding glass door. OK, this cat has obviously chosen me for some reason, so I picked him up to pet him. This poor guy was a skinny little bag of bones, beat up with a scabbed nose and injured eye (that’s his inner eye lid over his left eye). Then I saw my bottle of fish emulsion that was licked clean (yuck). Now… I don’t take in strays (especially males), but I broke down and did it… I fed him. Poor thing was starved! Biting the bowl he was trying to eat so fast. I wondered if the reason he wasn’t eating next door was that he had tangled with the tomcat that hangs out there. Our cat, Rose, had a fight with him last month and I had to take her to the vet for an abscess in her cheek. $200 and 3 visits later, I think she learned her lesson: she’s 11 years old now and not such a bad ass anymore. Maybe she would be ready to accept another cat in the family…
Meanwhile, the kitten (I’m calling him Little Buddy by the 2nd day) and our dog Reo are best friends. He’s eating like crazy, doubled his weight over the weekend, but has bad diarrhea (and probably worms). So on Monday, we went to the vet and he got checked out. The diarrhea medicine is taking awhile to work, but he’s feeling better and making himself at home… stay tuned for more news on Buddy.
Here at Nest Egg Gardens, we have one feline and one canine… and they match quite nicely. Rose the cat (11 years old) and Reo the border collie (short for ‘Oreo’ 4 years old). Although they were unsure about each other at first, they are now best buddies. They spend their evenings hanging out in the living room competing for our attention. Rose meows for a lap to sit on and Reo rolls over to give a high five.