Friends

28 May 2017

CHARLIE... STILL MY DARLNG

We’ve always had foxes but never one as brave as the latest visitor. It comes right up to the house to drink from the birdbath. I thought this was amusing and didn’t mind a bit. It was only a young animal, it would soon learn where it could and couldn’t go.
However, a few days later I saw Charlie the cat running towards the house. Not an ordinary run, this was fast as lightening and scared looking. I can only think he was scared by the fox but whatever it was frightened the daylights out of him. He wouldn’t go out at all, not even to do his business. He stayed indoors for quite a few days and I couldn’t entice him out. Then one day he did venture out but only onto the patio while I was putting bird seed on the bird tables a short distance away. No amount of coaxing could persuade him to join me further down. As soon as I went into the house, he was hot on my trail.
I remember thinking it might be the end of his garden adventures but deep down I wondered if the time would come when he forgot about the fox (who hasn’t been seen since) and go out as normal. He has been out since but doesn’t stay out for long. Still, it’s a start. Encouragement, encouragement, that might do it.
In the 15 months that I’ve had Charlie he has always been timid. It took him a while to settle when he arrived and absolutely ages before he would venture onto my lap. He jumped nervously and went into hiding at the least loud noise and when new people came to the house he freaked out. As time went on he relaxed a bit more but still keeps his distance from people he doesn’t know.
I don’t know his background but I wonder if he was ill-treated at some time. Because of this I’ve shown him a lot of love and care, which he would have had whether or no. It seems to have worked but not a hundred percent. A quick and unexpected move can send him scurrying for cover.
What do you think? Will the time come when he is totally settled and back to chasing birds?

Valerie

24 comments:

Ron said...

Good morning Valerie!

First I have to say that these pictures of Charlie are adorable! He is SUCH a cutie cat!

I had two cats at one time and one of them (Jerry) was a lot like Charlie, timid and nervous in meeting new people or new situations. It took him a while to get comfortable with my friends who would visit. However, with me he was very comfortable and close. His mother (Zoe) on the other hand was the complete opposite. I adopted her from the Humane Society (already pregnant) and Jerry was one of her kitties, therefore I had him since he was born.

I think (and I've heard this from other people who have cats) that male cats are more one-on-one with their owners; being quite loving and affectionate, yet timid with others. While female cats are more social, therefore adapt quickly to new people.

Jerry was so cute because he was like my own child; never leaving my side when I was home. We had a very close bond.

Have a faaaaabulous Sunday, my friend!

X to you and Charlie

Valerie said...

Hi Ron. I didn't realise male and female cats would be so different. Thanks for that bit of information.

How lovely having a newly born kitten to take care of. His Mom must have been immensely grateful to you. I only had one cat before Charlie, had her for 18 years. She loved me - literally - she would put her paws round my neck, snuggle up and wouldn't let go, but she wouldn't go near other people. Happy days.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend.

Mac n' Janet said...

Cats don't have the longest memories, except for place, and he'll probably eventually return to his old habits. He's a gorgeous boy!

Valerie said...

Hi Janet. I didn't know that about cats. Never too late to learn, though. Thank you.

Dan the Mountain Man said...

Charlie is a cute cat. I do not know completely but I guess after a while he will get back to running around and exploring the outside. You may have to sit out on the patio and watch him a little but I believe he will get back to hos old self.

The Great Ethan Allen said...

I'm pretty sure a cat can hold his own against a fox. (especially a young one) Our cat( Hiro) was quite the adventurer until the beginning of this year. He had been "Bullying" the local cats out of his space...but must have encountered a feral Tom that took a chomp out of his backside. (Vet says this happens all the time in Iowa) Since then, he has not bothered us to be let outside AT ALL. We are very happy about this. One: He was driving us CRAZY trying to get let out all the time. And Two: We are not eager to pay for another $500 vet bill to patch him up. I'm hoping he will continue to be an inside cat forever.

BTW. Charlie is a dead ringer for Red, my old cat. ( gone now) He as a truly awesome cat. Our current cat(Hiro) has some very big paws to fill.

Valerie said...

Dan, you're right, Charlie must be starting to explore - he brought me a mouse this morning. Ah bless!!

Valerie said...

Ethan Allen, I wonder if Charlie will ever be a bully? At the present time I can't see it happening, he gets startled so easily. Thanks for your opinion about the fox, I read somewhere that both animals usually ignore each other so I'm hoping Charlie does the same. Of course, it may have been my imagination about an encounter with the fox simply because I couldn't think what else would have scared him to that extent, and in his own garden. It was the streaking back home that made me think something had caused it and that the fox was the most likely culprit.

Jimmy said...

What ever it was that caused Charlie to run for safety it doesn't appear he is giving that safety up easily.

I don't know much about cats, but would think that his timid nature is something he was born with and will remain his personality, he may loosen up to wander some, but I don't see him going far.

kden said...

Aww, poor thing. I hope he turns to his old exploring self very soon.

Valerie said...

Jimmy, you may be right. He has started to go further afield but not for long. He seems more comfortable in his own space. The thing about taking rescued animals, we never know what they went through beforehand. Time will tell, as they say.

Valerie said...

kden, I can only wait and see. In the meantime I shall sit back and enjoy his company.

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Charlie is a lovely cat, Valeria, and has the same name as a former pet of min who was a small grey tabby. I have had 2 male cats and both were "devoted" to me and not as friendly with other people. One named, Sambuca, would hide whenever anyone came to visit and many people didn't even know I owned a cat!

troutbirder said...

I don't know about the future but Charlie is one smart cat. He could see that fox was a lot bigger than he was....:)

Valerie said...

Beatrice, perhaps the male sex do behave differently to female. I didn't know that, but it is lovely to have a pet that sticks by my side. Talking to people reveals such a lot.

Valerie said...

TB, Charlie certainly ran for safety that day. Sensible cat!

A Cuban In London said...

Charlie will only forget if the fox becomes, in Monty Python's parlance, an ex-fox. :-)

Greetings from London.

Denise inVA said...

Charlie is adorable Valerie, love those photos of him. He reminds me very much of my old Ginger Tom when I was growing up. I wish he could tell you what scared him so badly. We had a dog who was always scared of men with glasses. Took her forever to come round.

Susan Kane said...

Foxes are predators, and Charlie knows that. I think his instincts have kicked in.

Valerie said...

Hi Denise, the fox was here again, just ten minutes ago. Fortunately this time Charlie was asleep. I have never heard of an animal being scared of men with glasses. That IS a surprise.

Valerie said...

Hi Susan, last night it was a bird. Killed and feathered in MY BEDROOM while I was asleep. You should have seen the mess. Instincts to kill amaze me!

Mr. Shife said...

Hello Val. It has been awhile since I have seen pictures and he looks pretty great. I love his coloring. And I think he just got spooked but will be back to himself before too long. Take care.

LL Cool Joe said...

I missed this post about the fox! I've always heard that foxes don't kill cats, possibly in rare situations but they are more interested in rabbits and squirrels. As much as I hate fox hunting I'm not a massive fan of them myself, it's just the way they are killed I'm not happy about.

Valerie said...

Hi Joe Cool. I did some research on foxes and learned that, as you said, it is rare for a fox to kill a cat, although it can happen. I think it was possibly a first encounter for Charlie who is naturally suspicious of anything or anyone he hasn't met before. That particular night Charlie was running as if he'd been scalded. I used to enjoy seeing foxes sunbathing at the bottom of my garden, but somehow this one was different. He still comes in for food put out for the birds but quickly runs off if I go out.