Do you know a local Tom cat that doesn’t seem to belong to anyone and instead is cared for by the whole neighborhood? Maybe you remember a cat like this from when you were a little kid. I just read a lovely story about a beloved stray that belonged to everyone.
Cathy Buie writes about a cat that appeared in their neighborhood two years ago, but didn’t seem to have or really want a home. Everyone called him Mr. Bud and knew him on sight because he was such a friendly social guy. No one was sure where he came from, but wherever it was, he had decided that Cathy’s neighborhood was his new home.
Several of the neighbors started feeding and caring for the friendly cat. The kids built him a nice house where he could stay warm and dry. This year though, as winter approached, Cathy started to worry about the Mr. Bud’s welfare. He seemed to be an older gentleman and the cold days and nights were sure to be hard on him.
Cathy’s family called a meeting and collectively decided that Mr. Bud should live with them and their other two cats and two dogs. However, before Mr. Bud could be integrated into his new home, he would have to make a visit to the vet and get a clean bill of health. Unfortunately, the vet couldn’t sign him off.
Mr. Bill was found to have feline leukemia, a contagious and frequently deadly disease and could not share a home with Cathy’s healthy cats. Cathy’s family was heartbroken, but has vowed to do the best they can to make him comfortable, isolated in the garage during the winter.
In the United States, approximately 2 to 3% of all cats are infected with feline leukemia. It is the most common cause of cancer in cats, it may cause various blood disorders, and it may lead to a state of immune deficiency that hinders the cat’s ability to protect itself against other infections.
The best thing you can do to keep your cat healthy and disease free is to keep her inside. Outside cats live shorter and more dangerous lives. Cathy would like to remind everyone to take care of their pets, because they are family too!
Do you have a cat that is an extraordinary member of the family or came to live with you in an interesting way? Be sure to share your story. We would love to hear it!
Until next time…