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Sunday, November 2, 2008

Checkers is out of her cage!

Occasionally, while cleaning her cage, I would leave the door open so she could come out if she wanted to. At first, she didn't come out at all, then she would come out but stay within a foot or two of her cage, then she walked a little, she is out and doesn't want to go back in. I don't blame her for not wanting to go back in a cage, I wouldn't either.

Yesterday, she spent almost the entire day behind the couch. She came out twice to investigate for about 10 minutes. Now, she is out playing with the other cats but is still very skittish of me. I have been working with her quite a bit with baby food. For those who don't know why I am talking about baby food, here's why: When you use meat baby food (nothing else works quite as well) and put it on your finger, you can get the kittens to do what you want, like sit on your lap, sit to be petted, etc. It takes a lot of energy to do this. She is about 5 months old and I have had her inside for 5 weeks or so. I am trying to get her ready to be adopted but she is still not ready.

So, I am going to try a little experiment. I am going to see if having her out, since everyone gets along with her anyway, helps to tame her. She is what I would consider a "hard" stray. She will let me hold her but I have to entice her, she will not come up to me on her own. She is startled by any movement by humans, even slight movement. She is completely comfortable and at home with other cats. Also, she can get some exercise. I know it is hard for cats, especially kittens who have so much energy, to be stuck in a cage. Taming generally calls for them to be in a cage, at least for a little while.

I feel a little pressured because she is just getting bigger everyday and the smaller she is, the better chance she has to be adopted. It is also hard to find people willing to put work into their new kitten when there are so many friendly ones out there that were born inside or a human found them early enough.

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