The Ferals are getting bolder. At least 12 of them now live on my porch. And at least one of them (Midge) comes and goes as she pleases through the cat door.
But Noddy and Scamp are the most frequent visitors. They come in almost every day. Scamp likes to sleep with me, but he doesn't quite make it all the way through the night. He curls up next to me, purring madly if I'm petting him. He falls asleep on the quilt until half-way through the night. Then he gets up and uses his whiskers on my face to wake me up to let him out.
The other day I had to bug-bomb the place. Now for any of you who have ever had to do this, you know that you have to grab all the animals and get them outside before you set the bombs off. You wait for four hours, then you have to air out the place for a half an hour or so before re-entering. And you have to take all your dishes, pots and pans outside, along with all your food that is not in metal cans or the fridge.
That is the battle plan, anyway. I tried to do just that, but the animals did not get the message of how important it was that they not be poisoned by the bombs. the night before I put all the dishes and most of the food outside. then that morning, I barricaded all the dog and cat doors. Or at least I tried to do so. Sadly, as I was putting things in front of the cat door, one of the dogs was figuring out how to open the dog door. When I fixed the dog door, the cats had pushed everything away from the cat door. After about 45 minutes, I finally got all the doors secured. The dogs were relatively ease to corral and take outside, but the cats were not. Ben kept on hiding. Just as I would figure out where he was, he would quickly run off into another room and hide again. It was very frustrating. But at long last, everyone was outside. I set off the bombs and left to spend some time at a friends home.
When I returned, the dogs and half of the cats were sitting on the porch, waiting for me. They were not happy. Some of them even seemed a little resentful at being locked out of their home.
I apologized and unlocked the french doors which opened up onto the porch. But before I could open the doors, there was a rush of dogs and cats, pushing to get back in. This was not a good idea. Everything had to air out, get the poison cleared off before they could safely enter. I tried to explain that to them, but they were not listening.
I managed to slide in sideways to run through the house and open the windows and the back door before my breath gave out. I took a huge breath and went back to turn on the fans to help clear out the air. Then I went out to the porch to open up the french doors and sit down in between them, to catch all the critters who were trying to get in the house.
It was a challenge. The dogs could pretty much be kept back, but the cats! oh, they were sneaky! Noddy was the worst. This supposedly wild kitten was absolutely determined to get into the house. I grabbed him as he tried to slip past me. then I stopped Scamp from doing the same thing. Meanwhile Noddy tried to go further than my arm could reach and slip underneath the open door. I blocked him, but by doing do, I had to lean over, which offered Pearl a perfect chance to jump over my knee on the way in.
And so it went for talmost a half an hour.
I managed to keep them out for 25 minutes, but at last they over-powered me and rushed in en mass. At that point it was useless to try anything further. I went inside and took all the covers off the furniture and replaced them with clean covers that had been taken outside before the bombing. I brought the water dishes back inside and refilled them and put food in the cat bowls. Scamp ran to the bed and curled up on it, belly up for rubbing. Noddy batted poor Fred's nose, then made himself at home behind the recliner. Winken ran into the art room and knocked over a shelf and Charming sauntered into the kitchen to see if there was anything of interest. The 3 dogs all went to their favorite places (bed, bed, recliner) and the housecats ran to stake out their baskets.
That was three days ago and I still haven't put back all the foodstuffs that were taken out. But there are markedly fewer cockroaches now, and the Ferals have staked out this house as their own. Midge is still the only Feral to use the cat doors, but Noddy, Scamp, Blaze and most of the others come in whenever I leave the door open.
They think they live here, I guess they do.