Meet Collins Catpurrnip

Sugar: I think the neighbors got a cat.

YoursTruly: The same neighbors that set your property on fire?

Sugar: Yes, I’ve seen a cat in my yard, and I saw him at the neighbors.

YoursTruly: No. Way. Those. People. Have. A. Cat. NOPE.

Sugar: Maybe he’s a stray.

YoursTruly: (rolls eyes) You’ve only had 3 in a year. He’s probably a stray.


We were headed out and about, just driving about halfway along Sugar’s driveway, when he spotted the cat in the neighbor’s yard, crouched down behind an overturned rusty metal bucket. Those people are yard ornament collectors of sorts, but none of their collectibles seem to have any value. There’s a deceased boat, and sections of chain link fencing, and assorted vehicles, and yard debris, and garden statues of dubious value, and the remains of their yard-burning extravaganza. There were plenty of places for a feral cat to hide, but this one was huddled by the overturned bucket

We stopped and put out a can of food, because doesn’t everyone carry canned cat food in the car? He scooted away, feral-style.


Sugar set his trap one evening and caught the little guy almost immediately. I had offered to take him, because the little guy’s presence was making Sugar’s cats go nuts.

After being tested and neutered and vaccinated and ear-tipped, we let him go in my woods by the cat dormitory. He skittered away like a water bug, zigzagging out of sight through the trees.

Sometimes I don’t see cats again after release. I can only hope that they will return for food and shelter after their initial panic. I didn’t see the little guy for almost a week. I returned home from work after dark, and I thought I saw him at the feeding station on the picnic table.

A few evenings later, I heard a high-pitched mewing close by the driveway near The Treehouse.

This was definitely he and not the Scruffy Cat that has been hanging around.

He started showing up in the daytime. Sugar would ask about him every day, and I told him he was going to have to give the cat a name. He knows that I have a few cats that hang around that don’t have names. It’s not like they are going to come when I call them. But if I was going to have to give a progress report every day on this damn cat, then I wanted him to have a name.

Sugar drew a blank in the name game. He suggested that I name him. I rose to the challenge.

Alright, he was going to be Collins after my Collins family, and… hmmmm… and…

Catpurrnip. Collins Catpurrnip.

Mr. Catpurrnip managed to climb into The Treehouse. Sue is harmless and non-confrontational. (Sue has a name because she had to go to the vet, and Cat1000 seemed like a bad idea.)

So he’s not very feral. I would call him a “soft feral”, as opposed to “hard-core”. Soft ferals can be seen in the daytime, but can’t really be handled. There are varying degrees of feral-ness.

He’s not fully integrated into the group. He hasn’t figured out where his place is. Is it okay to be in The Treehouse? Is it okay to eat at the same time from the same dish with another cat? Which cat? Is someone going to chase him away?

The answer is no, no one is chasing Mr. Catpurrnip. But he’s the one that has to get that all sorted out in his brain.

He soon learned that he can’t eat out of the same dish at the same time as Georgia because she will purr and headbutt you and make happy feet on you, which is never good for the digestion.

Welcome to the ‘hood, Mr. Catpurrnip!


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