a tale of tails, tenacity, and tedium, as told by me, usually barefoot and bellowing

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Marcy's Cats

 Our cat population began innocently enough several years ago.  A cat came to us, we don't know how, but we all were secretly feeding her in the barn and not telling anyone else.  When it finally became confession time a funny thing happened...we had all named her Barnie!

We needed cats for the outbuildings so Barnie did not take long to supply us with many.  The funny thing about cats is if you have one many more seem to wander in from somewhere.  Then you have even more.
I am not much of a cat person (GASP!) but I have always had cats.  Growing up the rule was the cats stayed at the barn and the dogs did not bother them.  If they crossed an invisible line, they disappeared.
We began the same rule here.  The dogs knew not to bother the cats in the barn and the cats knew the dry creek was the line they could not cross.
Rules change.  The cats became friends with the dogs and there was no more segregation. Cats, chickens and dogs became one big happy family...all on their own.
We never actively brought cats in but cats came to us.  One after the tornado was blown in from God knows where.  He nested in the rafters of the barn and hissed at us when he walked under him but he stayed.  He had a huge cut from neck to chest.  We imagined from the tornado.
Then I, who prefers dogs to cats, brought one home.  A bob tailed kitten we called Orange then Agent Orange.  He disappeared I suspect into a house somewhere in the neighbor hood.  We have orange kittens now and then and just this year we have two bob tailed kittens so Orange lives on as does Barnie.

Don't ask me how many we have.  I have no idea.  Marcy is the cat keeper and feeder.  There are only one or two you can pet because they are a farm tool just like a tractor (I know, HORROR!)

Nature keeps things in a good balance and we care for the ones that are here.  Every now and then one will show a bit of Barnie lineage and we are happy all over again that she chose us for her family.

24 comments:

Blogoratti said...

What a delightful story and lovely photos indeed. Greetings!

aspiritofsimplicity said...

That's the story with cats and barns....I think they like the way it works. Mostly the humans leave them alone and mostly they do their job with the pesty things.

Jacquelineand.... said...

Just another reason to have a barn; barn cats! Ironically, I've always loved cats and always had one with me... but a few years ago developed a severe allergy to them. Now our cat, Connelly, lives outside (with shelter for the winter). Good thing I'm not allergic to dogs!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Most people never choose a cat - the cat chooses them.
Like the pictures of the kittens playing. Shame most of them are feral. But at least they have a safe place to stay.

Buttons Thoughts said...

Oh they are sooooo cute. I am a dog person too but love seeing my daughters, they both have cats. They grow on you:) Hug B

Sandra said...

i love all the actions shots, my first ever seeing photos of cats in action... they are usually sleeping or sitting... a fun post and bob loves orange tabby cats the best and said gray tabby's, and you have both . he is the rare loves cats/dogs the same. glad they all live together

Delores said...

You can't have a farm without cats and yours look happy and healthy.

T. Powell Coltrin said...

The dark gray one looks like a Bengal mix. I love kitties. Give them equal time (as the dogs) they will grow on your OR scratch your face.

A Quiet Corner said...

Feral cats were a topic of conversation with my son the other day...your barn kitties are a perfect fit for your lifestyle, Gail...WILD!...:)JP

TexWisGirl said...

just love the spotted stripes on that kitty! i miss having a barn cat.

Linda Wildenstein said...

My lovely Sunny Bunny was a bob tailed marmalade kitty. He was a a toot. And the grey tabbies look like they could be Chandler's twins. We are cat lovers here at Casa de Cuckoos but we also love our dogs as well. All 5 of ours were rescues so yay for your family for letting the beasties live out their lives having a place to live and work to do. xoxo Linda

McGuffy Ann Morris said...

I think it is this way on most farms. Everything/one has a place. I respect that. I know you care, so I know these cats are cared for, too. I love the pictures. As for me? I love all critters. I need cats and dogs equally in my life. They find us when its time.

Carol Henrichs said...

Love cat stories Gail. No doubt, I would love your barn!!! I've been a cat woman all my adult life. That is becoming a good, long time. We were adopted by a cat, who gave us four kittens. They live inside; she chooses to live outside. All have been spayed, so it is the end of the line. She doesn't have a barn, so makes due with the boat in the yard; sleeps on the tarp. All the girls have filled our empty nest; we are very grateful. My husband John, a dog lover is now a convert! Life is good!

Arkansas Patti said...

Funny how you all named Barnie the same. I do like that you have an integrated yard now, easier on the cats than trying to remember where the line was. You must not have rat one.

Susan Kane said...

When we moved to the farm, the barn and house were rampant with mice. Cats multiplied, stayed in the barn, cleaned out most of the mice. Mom took care of the house mice.
I so hate mice.

gld said...

The stray cat thing can get out of hand....one came here and had kittens.....couldn't catch them to neuter; ended up with 16! We are now down to just 5 (I think). All toms. I always wanted a Calico cat but that hasn't happened (yet).

Lowcarb team member said...

So nice to read ... and I like all your photo's but especially the first one.

All the best Jan

Lowcarb team member said...

Gail - thanks so much for your recent comment on the low carb diabetic blog.

Your cats are lovely - but I'll leave you all to look after them, I'll just enjoy the great photo's LOL

Hope you have a good October, the year is passing by too quickly.

All the best Jan

Karen S. said...

Wow, holy cat tales, there are some strong tiger stripes in that bunch. I love this story, they are most adorable too. We had the same kind of cat happening here years ago, and even me the dog lady, hehehe began to love them dearly. Every good farm (farmed or not) needs some good groundskeepers too!

Judy said...

Glad you are taking care of the barn cats...so many just leave them to fend for themselves...

We had cats who reproduced a while back until there were so many and they were inbreeding so much that one litter had a few with six or seven toes on their front feet...then they had some with mental disabilities...we decided it was time to fix a few...wow...a veterinarian came to the barn and neutered six males in one evening...interesting time as they began to wake up later...teehee...I'll have to note this in my journal...thank you for bringing up memories...

Far Side of Fifty said...

We had barn cats on the farm too...I could tame most of them but life on the farm is sometimes cruel to cats...and between getting stepped on by cows and feline diseases moving through every few years..it was sometimes too sad for me. I don't like cats in the house...we have had them over the years...too much hair in the house...one dog is enough!

Plowing Through Life (Martha) said...

What a fun story! They are adorable. Cats always choose who they want to be close to.

Lynne said...

I enjoyed your cat collection story . . .
Not a fan although I enjoy watching their antics . . .
Many in the family have had allergies to cats so the ones I see are friends cats.
Except the HUGE outdoor neighboring cat who manages to sit in view where Snickers can see her/him from two windows in the house. And the cat sits and teases, Snickers barks and barks. She barks, the cat rolls over, twists around . . . teasing, "playing" with her from a distance.
I open the door and say, SCAT just so I can get some peace and quiet from the barks!
Much more a dog person than a cat . . .

Saucy Kodz said...

I really enjoyed your photos and the story of Marcy's cats and especially Barnie. We always had cats at my Aunti's farm and one or two about the house. Thanks for sharing. We have been most busy cleaning up after flood....as this time we did get flooded. I am on last section of basement for cleaning, sorting, throwing out and then all disinfected and then perhaps back to almost normal. I have to say we were fortunate to only have just over 3 feet of water - many had more and had homes washed away. At least we have one road outta Dodge working at the moment. Hope M got my letter. Have a great Sunday.

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