I’ve been feeding a couple feral cats. Actually, at first I thought it was just one, but upon closer inspection, I realized it was two (which explains the amount of food being eaten, as I couldn’t fathom how a single kitty, even a single starving kitty, could snarf that much down). In my defense, they look pretty similar, both gray tabbies with white feet:
Kitty 1 (pictured) seems to have hurt her (his?) paw, favoring the right front one. Don’t know if it’s an old wound or a recent one. You might be able to see that she’s holding it to her chest above. She was limping a couple weeks ago, but appears to be able to walk on it now.
Kitty 2 looks almost exactly like Kitty 1 except her tail is less fluffy, and her white feet are shoes only, lacking a white sock up to her elbow that Kitty 1 has.
They’re both extremely skittish and won’t come to the bowl if either I or fosteronfilm are on the porch, although Kitty 1 will crouch beside it on the edge of the porch—just out of reach—while we’re filling it, waiting for us to go back inside before coming to eat. I’ve tried to make friends with her, but she’s not inclined to have our relationship grow any closer than it is, meowing plaintively at me if I linger, talking to her, as though asking me (politely) to please leave so she can get on with her breakfast.
My plan was to trap them both and take them into a vet’s to be fixed (and looked over) and then releasing them. They’re both very feral, and I can’t imagine either of them becoming tame enough to make the transition to being an adoptable housecat. But now I’m rethinking whether I ought to trap them or not. britzkrieg informed me that she recently trapped a feral just a few blocks away from our place (in j_hotlanta‘s yard) which ended up testing positive for FIV. It was too feral to be adoptable, and a FIV-positive kitty can’t be released back into the wild, so she had no choice but to have it put to sleep.
The odds are higher than I like contemplating that any feral in such close proximity could also have FIV, and I don’t want to have to euthanize these kitties. I know it’d be more responsible to bring them in and have them evaluated (assuming I could trap them), but the thought of my well-meaning action resulting in tragedy gives me the shudders.
• 13-day SALE of “Beautiful Summer” to the Killers anthology (edited by Colin Harvey, to be published by Swimming Kangaroo Books). This came last month, actually, so it’s an end-of-year hurray rather than a first-sale-of-the-year ring-in.
• Contracts for “A Thread of Silk” from Baen’s Universe and “Daughter of Bótù” from Realms of Fantasy.
• 22-day (or so) rejection from Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling for the story I submitted for their next anthology. Sigh. Disheartening and disappointing is an understatement, but I’ve been clinging to my “it was an honor to be invited” mantra.
• “When Shakko Did Not Lie” in the Jan. 2008 issue of Cricket, and it’s the lead story. Yay! “Shakko” has been awaiting an issue to be slated in for some time, and it’s been a while since I read it. Getting the contrib. copies and reading my story over was a little like seeing an old friend you’ve not heard from in ages, familiar but also new. Very pleased that it’s out now.