I know the dangers of inside/outside cats, after 30 years on these acres, have grieved many barn kitties, either found perished or just never came home. It’s why, when last year a little black feral kitten showed up on my porch, I declared her an inside only cat, and have enjoyed watching her grow safe from predators, cars etc.
But the grey striped tabby male Mr. O’Malley - huge, savvy & smart - had been 10 years an inside / outside cat, and though I worried each time I gave in to his clear demands & let him out each evening. Each morning, when I opened the shades, there he was on the porch chair, looking smug & contented, having a stretch, then asking to come in for some wet food & treats. Then a long nap on my bed. Each evening, I warned him of the dangers, begged him to be careful, and let him out.
I knew the risk that some morning, I’d open the shades… and he wouldn’t be there. I’m a farm woman, I know what can happen to a cat, even such a super cool, super smart, super huge guy like O’Malley.
I searched for him today, the usual places. Called, walked the big dog along the quiet country road - he could never resist the fun of joining a dog walk.
But nothing. And my heart is beginning to ache. Where are you, my O’Malley? I’m not ready to go on without my big grey striped man of this household. I still need you, O’Malley. Where are you…