An uninvited feline late night guest

Disclaimer: I’m living alone in a subterranean apartment with the windows to the garden side about two feet above ground level.

So I was sitting here in my living room on a lazy Friday night at 10 PM, watching football (soccer) on TV and listening to music, when I caught a glimpse of a black shadow in my left eye. Now, I’m not easily shocked, but I first thought of an insect or a spider, these are the usual suspects when something other than myself moves here, but this was too big. Turned out to be a rather large black cat, and he (I assume it was a he, I imagine to be able to tell the sex of a cat or a horse by their built. Couldn’t do it with dogs) seemed as surprised as me when we looked each other in the eyes. Now, I know cats, had some myself for long times, so I stayed cool and went after him to get him out. Then it also dawned on me how he had came in: my sleeping room window was open to let in fresh air. When I stepped into that room, he was already sitting in that window and leapt out. But he had had a little fun before, he had dragged out three pairs of my socks from an open cabinet door. I know him from sight, he’s one of the neighborhood cats that sometimes roam the garden, but I have no idea who he belongs to. But he sure can come back, maybe we become friends :blush:.

So, uninvited but not unwelcome.

If he was willing to come in, chances are (I think) that he is not a homeless cat, but one that lives in a person’s home and is allowed to wander outside. Not the best idea for the cat’s safety, but I’ve pretty much given up trying to persuade people to that view. Anyway, it might improve the chances that he is fixed so he won’t want to mark your territory so much.

I hope he becomes your friend. Many neighborhoods have “neighborhood cats” who wander while they may. I find it cheerful to think a cat may decide to become my friend without it being forced on my part. One of my ex’s cats decided that he preferred to live elsewhere but would occasionally come in to see what food was on offer and see if the bully who chased him away was still living at home. I really enjoyed that.

I’m in U.S. suburbia so my cats are indoor creatures only for their own safety. But I miss that about the U.K.

Male cats, like humans, tend to have shoulders wider than their hips. Female cats shoulders and hips are about the same width.

I’m sure he’s not a stray, he looks much too healthy and well looked after. I also have seen him a few times before in my garden, so I’m sure he’s some neighbor’s family cat that’s allowed to roam free. This is a very rural place with little traffic, so the dangers for the cat are few.

At an apartment where I used to live, one of the neighbors had an extraordinary cat that would often visit me. It was playful and highly intelligent, it had beautiful markings and it always looked like it was smiling. An intricately striped tabby, it looked a lot like photos I’ve seen of Bengal and Mau breeds. My girlfriend didn’t like cats but this one won her over on first meeting, as it had a way of imposing itself. She didn’t want to admit it, because that’s just the way she was, but she had to laugh when I said I wasn’t sure if the cat was charmingly rude or rudely charming, because that’s just the way it was. A real character.

Up the street, there was a vacant lot where I would sometimes park my car. One evening, there was a group of young people with a couple of German shepherds. As I approached, I saw the cat squaring off to deal with the dogs. They ran up to it and abruptly stopped about two feet away. The cat just sat down and stared back (probably smiling), which seemed to baffle and intimidate them. The bigger dog cautiously moved closer and began to slowly inch its head forward. I knew that all hell was going to break loose in another second and that things weren’t going to end well for my friend the cat, which wasn’t moving so much as its tail. So, I got there just in time to scoop up the cat… and all hell broke loose, anyway. The dogs were barking and jumping all over me, the cat was doing its best to wriggle free and the young people who had seen it all happen were laughing hysterically. It must have been quite a sight.

When I moved away a few years later, that cat was one of just a few friends that I knew I was going to miss, and I’m decidedly NOT one of those people who prefer the company of animals over humans.

I was once visited by a neighbor’s siamese cat when I was living on the second floor of a house. To get to me it had to climb partway up a tree, then jump onto a sloping roof that led to my open window. This only happened once so apparently this was too much effort and I did not met its high standards for return visits.