I’ve posted a little bit here and there about our ‘stranger on the porch’. Today, I’m finally ready to formally introduce him to the world.
A couple of weeks ago at work, I found a cat napping outside of our apartments. He looked a little ragged, but didn’t hesitate to approach me when I called for him. He had no collar, wasn’t neutered, and was swimming in fleas.
So I clocked out of work for a few hours to drive him to the shelter to get him checked for a microchip. Surprise, surprise, he wasn’t chipped either. The shelter was kind enough to give me a ‘kitty starter kit’ and I threw him in a crate in my bathtub and headed back to work.
That night involved a Target run where we bought some Dawn, a PetSmart run where I bought Capstar and a flea comb, and multiple dish soap baths for a very patient kitty. Mike and I washed him twice, until our sink was full of dead fleas and blood. He must have had so much dried blood from flea bites; our water looked like liquid rust.
But, he never scratched us, never bit, and when the bath was over stayed cuddled in a towel while we flea combed him.
For days, we threw our clothes straight into the wash after even going outside for just a minute to feed him. We replaced our soap and shampoo with Dawn, too. Just in case. But it worked! We never saw a flea on Lana, our furniture, our carpet, etc.
For a while, he lived entirely on our porch. He and Lana had an imperfect start and we were concerned about her prey drive. She’d only ever been around one other cat, but it had been some time ago and just a little kitten.
He had no name. A couple of people contacted me after seeing his ‘found’ poster, but he wasn’t the right cat. We have since learned that the building next to our apartments has feral cats living behind it. I honestly think he must just be the least-feral feral cat I’ve ever met.
Our cat, formerly called ‘Cat’ and of course ‘Stranger on the Porch’, is now called Mugen. We get to see his true colors now that he feels healthy and safe. He is sassy! And food motivated. And LOVES to play tag. Mugen sleeps on the porch and stays there during work, but otherwise enjoys spending time inside. He and Lana have a respectful relationship. They’re not best friends, but they make the most of having a sibling of another species.
Mugen is scheduled to get his shots, and I’ll be getting him a microchip next week, too. After that, he’ll be neutered. It’s interesting adjusting to a cat, a new thing for all of us. But it’s been a fun journey so far.