Saturday, May 5, 2012

Releasing Romper and Altering Cats, the Aftermath

Our vets, George and Christina, thought Romper was a very sweet natured kitty. We think so, too. :) We released him Thursday night at the upper level of the park, near where we trapped him, by the swingsets.  

Romper ready for his release

Opening the carrier door

 Waiting for Romper to come out, which he wasn't inclined to do

Like Bugsy and Mustafa, we had to coax him to come out. 

Petey and I tried a little sweet talk to get Romper out

Unfortunately he didn't stick around for his special meal. He took off in a diagonal path down the bank down toward the sea, in the direction of where he hangs out. 

Finally he comes out, apparently having a departure route already in mind

The other cats react after Romper was released, "Who was that masked man?"
From left: Gunther(exiting photo), Blabby, Petey, Greyboy, and Bugsy

I hope he is OK and we didn't damage his wonderful personality by instilling too much fear in him.

Because my experience is we aren't just altering cats physically, we are altering their sense of themselves and their place in the group: we are altering their lives  That is one reason I feel responsible for them after we neuter them.  But it goes without say that we are responsible for the welfare of God's creation anyway, no matter what.  That is part of the gift we were given to name everything.  When you name something, you are responsible for it, because you are saying in a sense that that being belongs to you.  Who names a child?  Its parents.

Gunther, for instance, has changed drastically since we altered him.  His entire personality has changed.  Once he outgrew his kittendom he became very sure of himself, even cocky. 

Gunther growing up, before we altered him. He was pretty comfortable with himself.

Now he is very unsure of himself.  I watched on mortified Wednesday night as Moonpie snuck up on Gunther from behind him and viciously attacked him.  Poor Gunther didn't even see it coming!  And he screamed pitifully.  I ran to break it up.  But I didn't see Gunther for 24 hours after that.  Since his neutering, maybe as a result of his stress,  his ringworm has gotten worse.  A similar thing happened earlier when the latest unknown Tomcat aggresively tackled and attacked Greyboy sending his bone chilling screams into the night.  (We altered Greyboy last winter.)

Sweet Greyboy, lately he has been wandering from the group and it is not doing him any favors

I always know when the one of the offensive Tomcats is there, even if I do not see them, just by the other cats' reactions. They get terribly focused and their eyes get like saucers. A hush comes over the whole group and they freeze. That is when I know to start looking around for the cause of their fear.

Friday when Moonpie showed up at the end of the cats' meal, late as he sometimes is (because he is on patrol all day long it seems, walking from the apartments, to the park, up to the parking lot and back again), I considered refusing to feed him because of all the trouble he causes.  But then I am afraid the next day I will see him dead in the road and think how sorry I will feel, because our chances with Moonpie will be up.  So I chose to lead him away from the group and feed him close to the sea.  Bugsy and Petey followed, but Gunther watched from afar crouched in terror on the table.  As soon as it was established that Moonpie was occupied with eating, Gunther seized the opportunity to take off, and did a swift crawl/run up the steps to the upper park level.

I fed Moonpie well away from the table

Gunther watched crouched on the table for a while, then split while the going was good

It's odd, altering seems to have brought out the timidity in Gunther, while in Bugsy, it brought out a new boldness.  I was so amazed to watch Bugsy walk right up to Moonpie's plate and dare to eat with him, and even more amazed to find Moonpie accomodate him.

Surprisingly, Moonpie accomodates Bugsy's usurption of his plate of food

Petey warily looks on; she doesn't trust Moobnpie at all, but is old enough to hold her own with him

It is as if a cat's fear acts like a cue to a potentially aggressive cat, releasing that cat's aggression.  I guess it is an ugly fact of life that stronger creatures behave this way toward weaker creatures, because we see it in the human arena, too.

Only time will tell how Romper will react now that he has been altered and released.  Please join me in wishing for the best for him, for a long, safe, peaceful life, and pray that some kind soul will step forward to adopt him.

No comments:

Post a Comment