Hello, hurt kitty

It took a week. A week of going outside in the mornings and calling a cat who would come when I called, who would eat out of a dish on the ground in front of me and would rub her face against my legs but would jump away if I so much as twitched a finger. A week during which my Patient Husband told me, “Your friend is back” when we saw the injured stray sunning herself in the back yard (she almost never left it, except to go back into the woods) and one morning when I found the trap sprung only to find we’d trapped an extremely annoyed neighborhood cat who was not our Intended (and boy, did he tell me off!) And one day when, cooking a whole chicken, I went outside and tossed a piece of the gizzard into the cage and one to the cat (who devoured the one I’d tossed her, and wouldn’t go into the trap to finish the rest.)

And then, happiness. 

trappedkittyBoy, was she mad. She was scared. She’d hurt her paws trying to dig her way out of the cage. But we had her. Triumphant, we had her.

We brought her to the animal shelter, who brought her to the vet, and the vet x-rayed her to find the break in her leg and figure out how bad it was. 

That’s where I lose my faith in humanity again: her leg wasn’t broken. There are two bullets in the cat.

You know how it is, you’re out in the suburbs late at night, armed only with your trusty BB gun, when suddenly a menacing figure strolls out in front of you on the paved street, or perhaps it’s sitting in someone’s flower bed among the peonies, and fraught with terror, you have no choice but to defend yourself against this six-pound hellbeast with a taste for catnip.

So of course, I can fully understand why someone shot this stray kitty. Twice.

This is an old injury, but because of the way it messed up her shoulder, her leg is never going to function right again. The second bullet is near her spine. 

I visited her at the shelter. The shelter worker who was helping us went in first, to a chorus of spits and growls. She came out, shaken. “You want to try?” Sure, I said. “Protect your face,” she told me.

Into the room I went. It’s the size of a closet. I stood by the back wall and talked to this growling, hissing bundle of hatred and mistrust. After a few minutes, she began rubbing her face on the cat tree where she was hiding. Two minutes more and she jumped to the floor. I huddled up in the corner, sitting totally still, and the cat started eating. She finished all her food, then turned to me, still growling.

And rubbed her face on my hands.

I kept totally still. She rubbed the rest of herself all over me, and the next time she put her face in my hands, I rubbed behind her ears.

That’s when she remembered: humans are good for pettings and lovings. Within two minutes, she was on my lap and purring. I knew right then that she could be socialized. It was going to be okay for her.

Her trip home tomorrow, maybe with more pictures if my camera doesn’t die.


  1. Lil Bunny

    Awwww ok bawling here, again. I am so glad she’s with you guys, she knew good people when she saw them even if it did take her a bit. 🙂

    As for names, I kindof like the name Triumphant. When I read it up there, it just sortof stuck out at me. Just an idea!

  2. Rohai


    That’s wonderful, Jane. Will they be able take the bullets out? Do you know if they hurt her when she moves and all?

    I’m so glad that she’s getting taken care of now, though. And–I like Lil Bunny’s suggestion for the name.

    1. philangelus

      They say it doesn’t hurt her, and I think they’re correct. She doesn’t flinch when I run my hand over her back, but I haven’t dared touch her hurt leg and shoulder. (Well, other than when I pet her gently.) The bullets can’t be removed due to the scar tissue and the healing that’s been done over them. They said in future years, she may develop arthritis.

      I kind of have a name for her. I’m still working to win over the family members, though. We shall see.

  3. Jason Block

    I am glad you captured the wayword kitteh. But those no good so and sos who shot that cat…May G-d treat them with the same mercy that they did to the cat. Sorry, I am with you on the faith and humanity thing.

  4. Deb

    I am so proud of you and your family for rescuing this kitty! I can’t wait to see pictures!

  5. Cricket

    You done good! So glad all your hard work turned out well. The cat obviously knew the difference between the unknown shelter worker and the person who gave it food and petted it.

  6. AnotherFaceintheCrowd

    One word: Halleluyah. 🙂

  7. Wendy

    Good on ya!

    And yes, she does recognize her benefactor. Those two BBs in her body are good reason for her not to trust humanity. I know the type who would do this to an animal, and if I thought it would teach them a lesson, I’d like to see the same done to them.

  8. knit_tgz

    My grandmother once tried to treat an injured cat that was *thrown* into her backyard in the night. The poor cat was bound with tight ropes, so tight that they cut into the cat’s flesh and it had gotten infected, plus had several burns. The cat didn’t survive, and my grandmother was very shocked with the cruelty of it all, plus she had to receive a tetanus and a rabies shot for all the scratches she got while trying to treat the cat.

    Loving cats runs in my family. My grandmother had one cat that would wait for her in a particular stone when she went out for shopping or so. All her neighbours would say: Oh, the cat is there again, Mrs. M. is not here, she must have gone to the city.

    I’ll keep your rescued cat in my prayers.