A month with new cat masters.

A month ago I welcomed Harry and Leo, two new cats, into my home. I say new, Leo is three years old and Harry is 18 months and they'd been in foster care for a while. So when they came to my house, although Harry was quite adventurous, Leo spent about a week and a half hiding under chairs and beds, before he'd really venture out for anything other than a bit of food or to use the litter tray.

Thankfully they can both use litter trays!

And they're at the stage now where they're just beginning to explore the outside. Initially Leo looked like he was going to take the lead on this, but it turns out that he's afraid of cat flaps, which is a little bit problematic, because it means he has to be let out and in every time he wants to go. He doesn't go very far, he tends only to go to the bottom of the back steps. Harry, on the other hand, is a dab hand at getting in and out of the cat flap that goes from my kitchen into the utility room and he has started adventuring all around my garden and into next door's garden.

He's not very keen on coming back home, which is a little bit scary, and I tend to have to tempt him with a treat and then grab him and run into the house. I'm hoping though, that in the next couple of days I'm going to open the cat flap from the utility room to the outside and see how he gets on.

I'm waiting for new ID tags to arrive for both of the cats. I did buy the little tubes you can get, where you write a name and number on a bit of paper inside, but within about two days, both of them had managed to lose them, I don't know how, so I've now got proper tags coming, with their names and my phone number engraved on them, so that hopefully if the cats do get lost, I'll know about it quite quickly.

It is actually really scary that they're going outside, because you really have to trust them to come back. Hopefully the fact that they get food and the run of the house here will encourage them.

The one thing that I'm really looking forward to is being able to get rid of the litter trays. I just don't like them, they're a bit stinky. The cats are brilliant at using them, but you do have to empty them a few times a day and they do stink quite a lot.

the biggest thing obviously is that your whole life gets taken over looking after the cats. The first thing I do every morning is refill their water, refill their food, empty their litter trays, and that's pretty much the past thing I do at night. And I obviously make sure that they're around and clean and happy. It's like going back to have two babies again, which really with an 18 year old son, I thought I was getting out of.

But, most importantly, I wouldn't change having them for the world. I had my first cat from 1998 until 2013, when he died of old age. I didn't realise how much I'd missed having a cat around until I got these two guys, but I wouldn't change them for the world.


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