Posts Tagged ‘barn cat’

Farm Friday 02.23.2018

What a weather week! We went from a nice 60’s temps on Monday to LOTS of rain on Tuesday which turned to ice on Wednesday and Thursday. The horses are so tired of being in the barn!

Murtagh likes to help me with hay chores. He especially likes to ride on the hay in the wheelbarrow. He’s the best tack room kitty!

 

I can’t get enough of these two. Dickens is so sweet and let’s Patches chew on his ear for as long as she wants. Who needs a super sweet chihuahua?!

 

 

Jaguar lives in his own paddock now. He will be 25 this year and the baby horse shenanigans can be too much for his old bones. He likes opening the barn door for some self serve hay. He’s always been a master at opening doors and gates.

 

 

The ice accumulation has been hard on the trees in our area. I’m hoping these crape myrtles don’t break from the weight of all that ice, but they sure are pretty!

Orange Kitty Brigade

We have had a bunch of new orange kitties join the farm family recently! I’m entertained that they are all some version of plain, orange tabbies.

First is Ouiser Boudreaux, or Ouisie. Ouisie was born at the farm and adopted by a friend of a friend as a kitten. Her adopter was a lovely family with 3 young boys. Well, it turns out that Ouiser isn’t crazy about being in a family with a bunch of young kids as well as a new kitten. They felt bad that she was having to live in a room alone and that she was pretty grumpy about life so asked if I would consider taking her back. I, of course, didn’t hesitate to reclaim the orange kitty.

She has to be a house kitty because she was declawed so she mostly just lives in my sewing room now. She’s never been around dogs so between the foster chihuahuas barking at her and my not wanting her to have free range access to the doggy door, she is very happy in her cat room. She has 2 nice windows where she can lay in the sun and an unlimited amount of fabric to make her bed.

Ouisie awaiting her belly scratches. After which she will bite my hand.

 

The other three yellow tabbies are “feral” cats from a co-worker. Said co-worker had a neighbor that moved away and left about 9 cats to fend for themselves. The cats seemed feral so co-worker and spouse trapped all the cats, got them spayed or neutered and found primarily barn homes for the cats. We got 3 of said feral cats, but as it turns out two of them are decidedly not feral! We kept them in feral cat cages (as advised by a barn cat non-profit group we got feral cats from a few years ago) to get them acclimated to our scent, their new home and life in general. After feeding and changing litter just a couple times two of the cats started coming forward for rubs and to check us out. Definitely not something that normal feral cats will do with humans!

After two weeks in their feral cage we let them out in a horse stall in our old barn where we have the most rodent activity. They stayed in their room for about 24 hours and then one of them wasn’t there. After a couple days they all left the stall, but we didn’t see them anywhere in the barn. We lost a chicken most likely to a coyote within the same timeframe so were worried about the kitties. Until we found them. In Boot City’s shop!

See. This is not how feral cats would behave. Both were rubbing on my leg seeking back scratches!

 

They seem to like to sleep on the shelves in the shop and come out periodically for attention. I think it is hilarious, Boot City is somewhat annoyed. There are sometimes rats in the shop so it isn’t all bad. Over the course of the past weekend they started going outside more and more. We aren’t letting the dogs out for a few days because they just chase and scare the cats. Hopefully the kitties will get their bearings about the place and learn to high tail it up a tree or another high place when the dogs are out. This is the trouble with sighthounds, if something runs they want to chase!

 

Murtagh, the kitten that lives in my tack room in the horse barn also found his way to the ferals. He first found them when they were in cages and spent a day or so just hanging out in their room. Boot City has photos documenting this interaction. After we let them out he again went to find them and they played in the shop together this weekend. We don’t let Murtagh out during the day when we aren’t home because he has so much white we worry he’d get taken by an owl (we lose a lot of cats to birds of prey), but we do let him out on days when we are home and he loves to wander around the buildings.

Pseudo feral kitty meets Murtagh, the tack room cat.

 

Hopefully the pseudo-ferals make good choices and are around for a long time, but we know how brutal barn cat life can be and hope for the best!

Farm Friday 06.30.2017

It is the LAST day of June! How did that happen?! Summer appears to be here for good for a few months. It isn’t blistering hot just yet, but it is quite warm. Boot City and I are taking some time over the next few days to do some pretty major farm improvements. Hopefully some will be blog worthy!

This is what Dickens thinks of mornings when he doesn’t get to go outside.

 

Harriet is right in the middle of her heartworm treatment. She is handling it like a champ. Dogs who are having the fast-kill treatment have to stay calm and quiet to avoid getting their heart pumping too hard. As the worms in their heart die, they get pushed out into the bloodstream and if the heart gets to beating too quickly it can kill the dog if a worm gets lodged in just the wrong place. It appears that Harriet gets this and when she is allowed to come outside she is very docile. She doesn’t run and play with Dragon and Dickens like usual. She may feel a little under the weather, but she seems more like she just knows she needs to mind her p’s and q’s. She is a wonderful little dog!

The dogs LOVE to eat my horses’ Muenster Milestone feed. They like it so much they get in empty bags just to lick the bag. Weirdos.

 

We got some good rain last weekend and early this week. We had been a few inches behind average at the start of June, but according to my Farmlogs app we are pretty much caught up to average.

For a little while this was a FULL rainbow. I never tire of seeing rainbows, they are such happy things.

 

Since all my riding horses are pretty much lame except for Coco, she has been getting LOTS of rides lately! It is really paying off and she has made a ton of improvement in the past few months.  Fingers crossed she will be ready to do a real course at a real show by the end of the year with lead changes and everything!

She does make happy faces, too! I think she enjoys her job and hanging out with me. She definitely LOVES her some treats!

 

Dragon and Dickens are both sighthounds, which means they are bred to hunt by sight. This instinct is much stronger in Dragon than in Dickens, but he certainly joins in when she goes on the chase. Lately they have been chasing the cat, which means the cat has been actively avoiding coming in the house or being around the house in general. We lost Tarzan and Marby last year so it makes us very sad that Sabrina doesn’t feel safe in the house. I don’t think the dogs would hurt her, but it isn’t fun getting chased every day. She disappeared for a day or two and we worried the worst had happened.

She showed back up in Boot City’s shop and it appears that she may becoming a shop kitty! We have moved her kitty food to the shop and Boot City has made a bed for her. Hopefully she will feel safer there and stick around. We love our Sabrina! Plus this might keep her away from the busy highway which is where the other two cats met their demise.

 

Do you have fun weekend plans? I’m sure lots of people are going on trips for a long weekend since the holiday is Tuesday. Be safe and have fun!

Farm Friday 06.23.2017

It is the week of the summer solstice, but Texas summer is still holding off a bit. Yay! It is supposed to be gross hot today, but then cool off for nearly a whole week!

Sterling has been a superstar about getting his leg worked on this week. He isn’t the most typical of horses, so I would have expected him to have been much more difficult for the twice daily wound draining procedure. Most days he would just eat grass while I squeezed on his stifle. The best part is that means it doesn’t hurt.

Sterling eats his meals while I do his hydrotherapy. The dogs LOVE the horse feed from Muenster feed mill because it has coconut oil. Mickey has decided to help himself to Sterling’s food during his hydrotherapy and went so far as to growl at Sterling to which Sterling’s response was to slowly walk away from his food. Yup, the 6lb dog ran the 1100lb horse away from his food!

 

This will be Dragon’s first real Texas summer. She isn’t a fan so far and when the temps get into the 80s she prefers the sofa to being outside, even though she LOVES to play with her buddy Dickens in the horse pasture.

Sighthounds passed out on the sofa. Notice that Dickens mouth is open. He played so hard and was so tired that he slept like an old man with his mouth open and even drooled. Ha!

 

Bubbles is the somewhat feral barn cat. For the first year we had her she didn’t leave the horse stall where her food lives. However, for the past few weeks she has been adventurous and we have seen her outside some. Yay for Bubbles! She also has started sleeping in the chicken wire in the ceiling of the barn. Presumably this is cooler, but it sure looks silly!

Bubbles relaxing in her chicken wire sleeping hammock. Eventually we will build a real chicken coop and tear down this old barn and the poor kitty wont have her chicken wire hammock any more. She also sleeps with her tongue hanging out. We always have the weirdest barn cats.

Happy weekend y’all and stay cool!

Farm Friday 05.05.2017

Happy Cinco de Mayo! We had a May the Fourth be with you surprise at our house yesterday.

Meet baby Esther! She’s named after Esther Summerson from Bleak House since that is the book I’m currently reading.

 

This thistle is growing under an old tractor we have on the property. I don’t know if this photo shows it all that well, but it grew around the step. It is huge and scary looking, but so pretty.

 

Harriet started her heartworm treatment this week. She’s a pretty low-key girl and likes to hang with the sighthound goobers when they are running amok.

 

Jaguar couldn’t eat his dinner the other night and this is why. I had to give him a rubber feed pan so as not to disturb the ladies.

 

Sabrina LOVES her an outdoor lounge chair in the sun. Bonus points when Kevin leaves a coat on it for cushioning.

 

Some puppy snuggles after Harriet’s first couple days of heartworm treatment. She is on the slow kill right now, so it isn’t as hard on her as the fast kill program.

Farm Friday 08.19.2016

One trip to South Padre and I fall off the planet! I’m back. Sunburned and now peeling, but I’m back.

We have had AMAZING weather this past week. The week prior was hot and gross, so the cooler rainy weather is very welcome.

 

Dougal played in the rain last weekend and looked like a gigantic drowned rat.

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Bubbles the barn kitty likes to sleep on upside down farm implements. Boot City thinks it is so she can see rats better to eat them. I think it is because it was hot and this provides a lot of ventilation.

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I haven’t been riding as much as I should because it was hot. I did get a new Samford Bridle from the Beval sale to use as a schooling bridle. Turns out it fits Coco better than Sterling, but he’s the model. For a fantastic price point this is a really nice bridle. Way nicer than a similarly priced Dover house brand bridle I got a couple years ago.

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Every night when we clean stalls the young dogs have their own version of AFC fighting. Annie and Charlotte take turns tagging in to wrestle with Dougal. Dougal can’t get through the fences so he’s always stuck in one stall run while they run in and out. It is pretty cute and funny.

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And this is how Marby does laundry. Because. Marby.

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Farm Friday 07.29.2016

We have a chicken laying these teeny tiny eggs. They don't have yolks and so far we have found at least 6 of them! They make for great dog treats.

We have a chicken laying these teeny tiny eggs. They don’t have yolks and so far we have found at least 6 of them! They make for great dog treats.

Bubbles the barn kitty is doing very well. She stays put in her hay stall, but we can't touch her yet. Hopefully with time she will become friendlier and realise we won't hurt her.

Bubbles the barn kitty is doing very well. She stays put in her hay stall, but we can’t touch her yet. Hopefully with time she will become friendlier and realise we won’t hurt her.

This is Charlotte, our newest foster dog from Fort Worth Animal Control. She's a few months old and we think she's a German Shepherd cross. The shelter identified her as a lab mix, but she has decidedly German Shepherd ears, face shape and hind end conformation. She has learned to sit and wait her turn for meals.

This is Charlotte, our newest foster dog from Fort Worth Animal Control. She’s a few months old and we think she’s a German Shepherd cross. The shelter identified her as a lab mix, but she has decidedly German Shepherd ears, face shape and hind end conformation. She has learned to sit and wait her turn for meals.

We have had lots of pop up thunderstorms this week which make for some stunning sunsets.

We have had lots of pop up thunderstorms this week which make for some stunning sunsets.

We also have a mama cat with five kittens we are fostering for Fort Worth Animal Control. This is a cute tuxedo female from the litter. She was assisting with wash stall supply inventory and napping.

We also have a mama cat with five kittens we are fostering for Fort Worth Animal Control. This is a cute tuxedo female from the litter. She was assisting with wash stall supply inventory and napping.

Farm Friday 07.22.2016

I often think I miss a lot of posting opportunities about the farm animals so I’m starting a new regular post; Farm Fridays! They will consist primarily of just recent photos of happenings on the farm. Enjoy!

Tarzan spends the majority of his summer days sleeping on his favourite ottoman.

Tarzan spends the majority of his summer days sleeping on his favourite ottoman.

 

Pablo isn't often very friendly, but when he is he's pretty funny. He's very much a heavy-breather-in-you-ear kind of donkey!

Pablo isn’t often very friendly, but when he is he’s pretty funny. He’s very much a heavy-breather-in-you-ear kind of donkey!

 

Marby never ceases to entertain. Never. He also likes to hang out on the tops of vehicles of all kinds as well as buildings.

Marby never ceases to entertain. Never. He also likes to hang out on the tops of vehicles of all kinds as well as buildings.

 

 

The Secret Life of Kittens

Do you know what the world needs more of? I’ll tell you; cute baby animals. After a super busy week at work, one of the rougher weeks for Boot City with the weather man (I’ll explain that in a later post, but it’s a pain issue) and a somewhat sickly horse it was pretty fun to be able to pop into the ratty old barn and get a glimpse of these cutey patooteys.

Already sneaking out. They didn't learn that from me!

Already sneaking out. They didn’t learn that from me!

They are a few days older than 5 weeks and mama cat had hidden them for the first 4. So not nice of her to hide them. Boot City found them after they were a few days old, but she had them in the ceiling of the barn so they weren’t exactly easy to get to. I, of course, reached into the insulation where they were hidden to see how many there were and snuggle them. Mama cat promptly moved them to where I couldn’t reach. Rude.

She seems to be fine with sharing them now. When I go into the room where they live she talks to them and they all come out to see her, then see me and freak out hissing. It is quite adorable and funny.

The babes are already learning to eat big kitty food.

The babes are already learning to eat big kitty food.

The harsh truth out here in the country is that we go through a lot of cats. I think we’ve had about 15 since we’ve lived here. It is difficult to get them to stick around. Even the ones we’ve spayed and neutered found a reason to go out and either find a new home or become coyote bait. Two of the ones we loved most got hit by cars on the road in front of our house. Our sweet neighbor got them off the highway before they were a gooey icky mess so we were able to bury them properly. Now that is a good neighbor.

A couple of these munchkins are spoken for. One goes to a new home next week. And it ‘s a good thing because it appears that our other female cat is going to pop in the next week or two with her own batch of kittens. I’m not going to lie; I love having little kittens around to play with. Seriously, how can you resist this face?!

Sweet, furry kitten.

Sweet, furry kitten.

I know the more responsible thing to do is to get them all spayed and neutered and that is the plan for the mama cats once the kittens are no longer nursing. Hopefully we can get a group discount at the vet.

Kitten snuggled on a tractor implement.

Kitten snuggled on a tractor implement.