My new shadow and lap warmer..
When we first moved here, we brought both our cats, Pepper and Sputnik and our dog Sophie with us. Unfortunately, Sputnik's homing beacon kept taking him back to our old house which is about a quarter mile away or so. We'd go get him, and he'd stay here a day or so, then yowl to go out and disappear again.
After five times, we gave up. He didn't want to be with us as much as we thought. Pepper was thrilled to be the only cat. He'd run and play with catnip balls and chase laser pointers. It was weird, since he NEVER played when Sput was around. I guess it was a total dominance thing Sput had going on.
Thus, Pepper was not amused when a lonely, scraggly, tailess, skin and bones cat showed up on our back porch. He was truly homely. I had never seen a cat in that condition around here. Even strays seemed well fed from hunting or snarfing down food left outside for pet cats, but not this one. I actually thought he had a spine deformity because it stuck up so high and was so boney. You simply could not pet this cat, it was painful.
I don't think I have any before pics of him. He was never meant to stay. In fact I called it "Porch Cat" to drive home the fact that he was never to come inside. We were in the process of unpacking so always had empty boxes on the back deck he'd sleep in. What astounded me the most was how he acted as if he "belonged" inside my house. I think this is what struck a nerve with me. I'd seen Sputnik leave us to go back to his "home" (which was an empty house with no one to feed him for months). What if this cat had done the same? What if he had lived here before and had been taken away and found his way back - not stopping to eat or anything. Just following that drive to find "home". So, yeah you guessed it, he found his way inside my heart and my home. We never did rename him, I just shorten it to Porchy sometimes. It sounds silly, but he seems to like it.
I have heard if you nurse a baby kitten with a bottle they become the best cat you've ever had - none of that aloof stuff, just complete adoration and love. Well, I think me saving this poor cat's life and feeding him and taking him in and giving him a home again has done the same thing. Wherever I am, Porch Cat is never more than a few feet away. Sometimes he lays on my desk behind my laptop, looking out the window at the birds. Usually he is in my lap when I'm working and knows to keep his head down so I can type. Pepper especially hates this. My lap is Pepper's domain.
The greatest thing though is that Pepper and Porchy play together. They chase each other through the house and pounce and hide. And Porchy is really nice about not using claws on Pepper who was declawed (not by me! His previous owner died and I took him in.) Poor Sophie tries to play with them too, but they don't allow dogs in their games.
The funniest thing overall is how this scrawny, scraggly, skin and bones cat that I thought had a spine deformity is now the fattest cat I have ever owned. That spine deformity- was not a deformity, it was just his spine, period. That's how skinny it really was, his bones were about all he had. Hmm maybe I should have named him Bones. It used to fit. Now he's more of a lardbutt!