Well, I'm happy to report that he is doing great! I hope I won't bore you to tears by offering a full account of Ramone's journey towards domestication. He has turned out to be the gentlest cat I have ever known -- he is a total sweetheart, completely submissive to plump old lap cat Penelope (despite the fact that he is a young street kid and infinitely stronger than she).
When Ramone first turned up on our doorstep, we were immediately struck by the fact that Penelope -- who hisses and spits and puffs up at the sight of any strange cat -- was completely relaxed around this new little visitor. Interesting. They even touched noses through the window screen. Hmmm.
We fed Ramone for about a week, and after a family survey and blind ballot we named him...a sure sign that we were growing attached.
Then he disappeared. And then I spotted him on the porch of a local house that supports a feral cat colony. "Oh, Ramone!" Our eyes met. He didn't show his face around here for about a week.
And then he came back.
And he looked terrible. Skinnier than ever, lethargic, and sad looking.
We had never managed to touch him, he looked sickly, and this time around I was feeling very hesitant about feeding him. Did we want a sick, unfixed male cat hanging around? Well, no. And I couldn't imagine ever being able to get him to the vet.
My daughter Chloe decided to set up a cat carrier as a little hideway on the front porch, with the hope that Ramone might take to it. I was skeptical, I'll admit it. But within 10 minutes -- Ramone was in his box! He had just saved his life.
Long story short: we got Ramone to the vet, he was neutered and immunized, he went through a course of antibiotics to treat his infection-related anemia...and now he is thriving. He has discovered that he loves being petted -- so much so that any time I raise my hand to take a photo, he dives at it for a pet. So most recent pictures look something like this
or this (you can see that Penelope is continuing to keep a close eye on her new sibling)
But I did get one decent picture while my husband played interference with the cat treats.
Ramone has lots of scars and F.I.V. -- souvenirs of his rough start in life. He is also a little skittish, unaccustomed to the kinds of noises and activity characteristic of indoor family life. But he is a total sweetheart and (I know I'm biased) isn't he a cutie? I love him.
Ramone likes little corners and hideaways so I'm planning to make him a couple of little houses. I have ordered a back issue of Stitch for this pattern by Penny of Sew Take a Hike:
I have the perfect fabrics for this project...can't wait.
Okay, that's Ramone's story to date. In the coming months I hope to have some pictures of him curled up on a quilt, safe from winter storms! I can think of no better use for a quilt.
Have a good day, everyone.