We have seven cats on the farm so there is always an excess of cat biscuits and leftover cat food around. Due to availability of cat food, stray cats are often attracted to the house and are very difficult to chase off.
Many of the stray cats are very agressive and they bite our domestic cats leaving large gashes and gouges across their face. Because of this problem, whenever we see a stray cat, we have to chase them away. I usually don't feel sorry for them because they're so agressive but this past year has seen a new skittish arrival.
We've christened him as 'Tom Number 2" because he looks very similar to Tom with his white fur and ginger splotches of colour. We've tried to chase him away thinking that he bites our tame cats however after many failed attempts, he still remains on the peripherals. He waits until our cats are fully fed and then comes skulking to polish up the leftover food.
Now we don't chase him away anymore because he's not as agressive as the other strays. Infact, he is rather timid and always looking very pitiful. I've been feeling so sorry for him these past few months. He looks really scraggly, is always hungry and today, I noticed that he has one eye that looked infected or blinded and he had a huge gash on his left cheek. My heart melted and I felt so sorry for him.
My mum and I know that he skulks in the background waiting for leftovers and to discourage him from attacking our cats, we put out excess cat food so that he can have some leftovers to eat and doesn't attack our cats simply due to hunger. Today for the first time, I looked him in his eyes and he looked back at me very pitifully from his hiding place. Two eyes of different colours. I filled a bowl with some cat biscuits for him and for the first time, he got his own dish instead of eating leftovers.
Homeless cats and homeless humans. Being homeless is a sad state to be in. I see our cats being so well fed and loved and I see Tom Number 2 being unloved, a stray that had been left to fend for himself but it appears that he hasn't acquired the agression to survive as a homeless stray. We haven't chased him away for a few months now- instead, he's been partly adopted into the family because mum and I put out extra cat food on purpose knowing that he will come and polish up the leftovers.
I know that there's been a new, large black stray in our vicinity and he doesn't look timid or afraid. He's agressive and isn't afraid of me when I try to chase him away. Makes me wonder if the black stray has fought and gouged Tom Number 2's face since they both vie for the leftovers...