Monday, August 24, 2015

Pip's near-miss and other animal happenings

This is why my hair is greyer than it was in the days I had not outdoor cats...

Our quasi-barn-cat didn't return to the barn on Wednesday night. Then she didn't return Thursday night. Then she didn't return Friday night either. I was sure she was dead! Once or twice she has stayed out overnight, but never three nights in a row. We lock all the cats in the house or barn every evenin, but Pip has found some new escape route we haven't figured out yet (and nor have the other barn cats!)

So I spent the weekend worried sick and fearing the worst. I drove to the very back of the property in the RTV in the hopes I'd find her back there, but nothing. Usually she does come when called.

Sunday I read an online article that gave me a bit of hope about finding lost cats. I took another stab and things and decided to walk along the far edge of the soybean calling her name. There are over 20 acres of soybeans that are now almost waist-high on me, and a cat, even a cat who is as savvy as Pip, could get lost in there.

So I walked along, calling her name every ten seconds or so. When I was halfway across the field, I hear a meow. Then another. Then another. Then the soybeans started rustling... it was Pip!! I picked her up and brought her back to the house. She seemed okay apart from a swelling on her tail near its base, so I took her to the vet on Sunday. Turns it it was an abscess that needed lancing and draining. I am picking up Pip tomorrow, and she'll be wearing the cone of shame. Our theory is that something grabbed her (coyote? fox?) and she managed to wriggle free but got disoriented in the field, or else was just scared and hiding for three nights. So she'll be okay, but again I am torn about having any outdoor cats. 

Initially Redford showed up and we said he could be a barn cat. And then our rat population grew out of control last summer, so we added more barn cats. Now the vermin situation is well looked after, but I have a bunch of outdoor cats that I spend too much time worrying about. However, we hate using poison on rats, and the traps just weren't doing it. So I don't know what I'm going to do. Pip is particularly independent and hates being in the house for any length of time. I'm thinking I should order up kitty GPS trackers for everyone.

Anyway, I'm just glad I found her this time.

Meanwhile, the cat antics continue...

Annuk taunting Daisy from a tree!

Buttercup in alfalfa.

Me and my boyfriend Saul. He was nibbling my arm, but he's gentle. No teeth! ;)

And meanwhile, Emerson...

...still loves the pigs.

A lot.

Honey and Daisy watching the sunset.

And we got a humane trap and are going to get this guy in for the snip-snip asap:

He's letting me get closer and closer to him but still won't let me touch him! But Keaton does "talk" to me all the time. 

And inside...

Daisy and Archie are having a mad fling!

While Honey looks on. All three are from Greece but Daisy and Honey are sisters and never knew Archie when he was there. But now it's as if they know they are all from the same dump in Syros! Very sweet.

And here's my doofus pony, Finney...


And my HORSE...

Roo, at our riding lesson last Friday. He's a handsome guy.

Don't be jealous Finney! I love you too.

You too Rudy!


  1. Oh, poor Pip! What an experience! I hope she stays closer to home now.
    My parents for years fed some stray cats vowing they would not stress out about them. Famous last words! They worried as much about them as the indoor kitties.
    What an idyllic place you have Natalie.
    Can I come live there? LOL!
    Take care.

  2. Absolutely love your pics! Especially the one of Finney! And so glad you found Pip... don't know how you do it? So many to worry about... but they all do look happy and content.

  3. Poor Pip, you did rescue her. What a great tip to look for her where she could be disoriented.

  4. I really hate it when that happens. I worry and imagine the worst. Sometimes they come back and sometimes they don't. If it wasn't for the rest of the critters being so needy I don't know how I could handle it.
    Great pics as always!

  5. I always, always look forward to the latest from your Land of Animals.
    The indoor-outdoor cat thing is difficult. It seems that you've found the best solution (outside of this latest event) by shutting everyone up at night. Cats just have so darn much fun outside, I hate to think of them being limited to the inside of a house.

  6. You know how happy I am that she's home. And I understand totally how worried you get. I'm hoping she stays close to the barn now once she is back outside. I love the idea of having a cat house for them. You could put trees inside and maybe they would be content to stay inside. You and Finney...awwwww.

  7. FEW !! I am glad you found Pip safe . WOW ! real animal house you have there , wonderful ! Glad you and your Roo are doing well , lovely boy he is . Wonderful photos . Oh and thanks for getting back to me of the camera you use and lens . I have a Nikon D3100 I use for my nature photography and my fave lens a 55-300mm telephoto zoom some of the wild nature doesn't like me to close lol ! Thanks for sharing , Have a good evening !

  8. My baby girl managed to get out on the roof without our knowledge, then fell OFF! (We have a steel roof). The next morning we could hear her howling but had no idea where she was. She was outside, under the back deck trying to climb the (cement) wall......poor girl. Considering she was found at two weeks of age in the middle of a corn field that was about to be harvested in about an hour......she has sure turned into an indoor kitty.

  9. I was wondering if you still had the pigs. It's too bad nobody wants some of them.

  10. I'm so glad you were able to find Pip. Hopefully she's learned that staying closer to the barn is the best idea. My brother has three outdoor/indoor cats. They spend most of the days outside or in the barn, but hang out in the unheated porch at night (and sometimes during the day). Puddy (the mother cat) was injured a couple of years ago, R thinks a hawk attacked her, which thankfully she survived. But she does tend to stay closer to safety these days.

    The photos of Emerson with the pigs are hilarious! Isn't he the one that loves the donkey too?

  11. poor sweetheart, thank goodness she is ok!!!
    I agree, hopefully she has learned and will stay closer to home now

  12. So glad to hear Pip is ok, poor kitty. Great to see all the lovely photos.

  13. A whole lot of love to go round!

  14. love the picture of Buttercup in the alfalfa!! so glad Pip is ok....we care for a feral and completely understand your worries.

  15. Geez, I don't know how you managed to keep it all together with one of the cats missing. It certainly sounds like she was grabbed by a preditor, thankfully an inexperienced one or it would be all over. I think the bean field saved her life. When she managed to get free, her captor was unable to find her again.
    I think the perfect solution is an addition to your house with a studio and cat room with a large enclosed cat run attached. Now, you'll just have to scout through the back 40 to find where the money tree grows.

  16. Hi Natalie
    I just love your posts. I'm sure living on your farm is a lot of work but you make it look easy and so much fun. Glad pip was found safe. Cheers

  17. I'm so glad you found Pip and she (for the most part) was okay. Whew. I feel the same way--I have three outdoor kitties and vowed to have none when my two older ones pass on, but then a little kitty in need came along and well..there you are. My house is overflowing with cats so there is absolutely no way I can have more. The inside kitties have a very large catio but I'm pretty sure my outside kitties have a far more interesting life! But it kills me to think what can happen 'out there'.


  18. I love this happy ending. And your photos always make me smile Knatolee. I know I've said this before but your blog is such a bright spot in my day!


Thank you for all your comments, which I love to read!