Wednesday, February 03, 2010

MaMa Is Still Missing...

It will be two weeks soon since I last saw MaMa our feral cat. When I went out to feed her early that morning she was waiting in the shed. She wouldn't go over to the bowl of food until I stepped back out. She often did that, but occasionally she'd let me pet her while she ate a few bites.

A couple of hours later the men arrived to work on our house. I had told them about MaMa so they wouldn't be startled if she ran out from under the deck. They had to rip out the deck and that was one of MaMa's favorite places to hide. I don't know if they saw her...they never said. They were here for around five hours, but I haven't seen MaMa since.

Last Saturday evening after dark we walked up and down our street calling for her. She's feral and not like a regular pet, so she wouldn't meow or come running if she heard us, but I was hoping she'd hear familiar voices and later come home. We deliberately did it in the dark because that's when she'd probably be more likely to move around.

I still put her food out twice a day like normal. The food is being eaten, but I'm not sure by whom. One morning I saw a possum and I know he ate the food that morning. I saw a cat in the yard this morning, but that was a few hours after the food had been partially eaten. (I put the dish out and check 30-45 minutes later to see if it's been eaten.) I'm hoping it's MaMa eating the food some of the time, but it's hard to tell. The shed is behind the garage which blocks my view.

Whenever I go out in the yard I talk to her. I'm hoping she's somewhere in the vicinity hiding and can hear my voice.

We've fed her for nine years, but she's not much tamer than when we first saw her. That is the sad reality of a feral cat's life. A feral cat is usually a kitten born to a pet that's been abandoned. We have apartments behind our house and I assume that's where MaMa came from originally. Someone probably moved away and left their pet. That pet hid somewhere and had kittens. If a kitten is not exposed to humans early in life they are feral.

Every other day I call animal control to see if she's been caught, but she hasn't and I really don't expect that she will. It's the not knowing that bothers me the most. I never expected her to run away like this, but I can only assume she was terrified when the men came in the yard. There really wasn't a choice. Our house needed slab work and we couldn't wait.

In the past she had disappeared for a couple of days at a time. When we trapped her with a humane trap and had her fixed she was gone for a couple of days after we released her. Then when my husband brought her in for Hurricane Ike she disappeared again but came back. But she has a long memory. My husband never was able to get near her again. We worried about what would happen if there was a hurricane again because we knew we wouldn't be able to catch her.

I thought after nine years she wouldn't disappear for any length of time because she's used to getting her meals here. I don't think she could survive on her own any more. When we first found her in the shed she had chicken bones. I'm assuming she was eating from the dumpster at the apartments, but she hasn't had to do that for many years.

So, I'm hoping she's nearby and still coming for meals. I will continue to put out the food and continue to call animal control indefinitely. I miss her and feel so sad about what's happened.

Please spay and neuter your pets.


  1. So sorry to hear this! I hope MaMa will eventually come back. It may be someone else was feeding a feral cat and she is eating there now. I hope she'll come back soon!

  2. We have a lady where we live that takes care of about 10 feral cats. They are soooo healthy, and keep down the mice population.

  3. Hi Betty,
    I am sorry about your cat. I too took care of a feral cat. I thought I had lost her as well but after about a month I found her down the block from my house. Don't give up.

  4. So sorry that she is still missing! Hopefully, she will come back..

  5. I hope your cat comes home soon. So sorry you are missing your pet!

    thanks for stopping by my blog!! Come back anytime! :)

  6. I'm so sorry to hear about Mama, Betty! We've rescued animals for the past 16 years; I know it can be a challenge when it comes to feral cats.

    Maybe once the men are done working and things have returned to what she considers safe, she'll show back up.

    I hope so.

  7. I so hope she turns back up soon!

  8. I admire you for the care you give to that little lost soul.She is lucky to have you.Maybe when she realizes that the coast is clear, she'll come home.I'm inclined to agree with the comment above about her eating at several different places...Don't give up on her.I'll be praying for both your son and for your little MaMa cat!

  9. I hope MaMa cat will come back too. I have always been afraid that our cats would get out and not come back. I think I'd always be worrying about a feral cat...


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