My Mau Isabella

My Mau Isabella

by William Burke
(Cotati, CA)

Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

A friend of mine said she had found a kitten in her garage. It was about six weeks old. She could not take care of it herself and was concerned that if she brought it to a shelter it would be put down because she was a wild one. Isabella, as I would call her, was a feral six week old kitten.

I said I would tame Her down and find a home for her. I already had a 13 year cat named Muushuu. Muushuu does not like cats, especially kittens. But I am a softy and had years of experience taming wild kittens. Muushuu would just have to deal with it for a while.

When I got Isabella home the first thing she did was bite the heck out of my fingers. Then she quickly hid in the back of my closet and hissed at me for five minutes. I had my work cut out for me.

My strategy with wild Kittens is too hold them as soon as possible. To acclimatize them to the human touch and use food as a means to convey I am their friend and provider. It was three weeks before Isabella stopped hissing at me. It took another 3 weeks before I could hold her. Shortly after that she accepted me as "Hers". A great change took place within her.

She would sleep on my bed at night between my legs. She would jump on my lap and reach up with her paws and hug my neck and brush her chin against mine. She had come to love me.

At this time Muushuu disappeared suddenly. I was devastated. I was heart broken. She was 13 years old and I feared the worst. In the meantime Isabella was a Godsend. She and I bonded deeply. It was not part of my original plan . I had held back some feelings towards her so I could let go of her. But now since Muushuu was not here my love for Isabella grew.

One month later a neighbor said he saw a Siamese cat in a drainage ditch 25 yards down the road. I thanked him but thought there was no way it was Muushuu. I believed her to be dead by now. The next day I went down to the ditch and looked inside and Muushuu's head popped out. I almost fell down. I had to use a trap to catch her as she was so ill that she did not recognize me.

She had lost half her body weight and one kidney was 50 % smaller now. It took her two months to recover.

She and Isabella did not get along well at all. At one point I thought I might have to rehome Isabella. After six months of working with Isabella and Muushuu they were able to forge a relationship based on mutual indifference. (haha)

We are a happy family of three now and I love My cats and they love me. How great is that?


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My Mau Isabella

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Oct 15, 2011
How great is that?
by: Grahame

It's very great indeed. And you must be a very fine fellow.

I especially appreciate your story because I've been in a similar situation. I took in a powerful feral and had to wear gauntletted gloves for a long time lest he tear me apart. Neighbours with young children urged me to put him down, but I believed in us together and patiently waited him out. He turned into a lovable wuss and a best pal. He lived with me for the rest of his life: 17 years. I brought another stray moggie home after finding her in a hole under railroad tracks as I waited for the last train home on Christmas Eve. She jumped into my arms and adopted me forthwith. The next morning he was cuddling in his bed with the new kitten.

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