The month of November has just flown by. Fortunately we had a very nice month with sunshine and above normal temperatures. This made the outside kitties very very happy. Now that the month is coming to a close, the temperatures are more seasonal. This means much colder days and nights.
The winter shelters all were put up in mid October as we had a bit of a cold snap. Since that time, the heated houses have rarely been used. The boys have been happy to use the “Magic Boxes” or the small K&H heated houses. The canopy that is over our deck, is only used during the warmer months of the year. It would not do well with snow. So each year in October or November we take it down until spring. The plan is to take it down this weekend while out decorating for the holidays. This means, the shelters that are under cover must be put away too. I do make a few accommodations, but they need to be under cover or they will get wet with snow and rain. I have found by placing them under a small outside end table and then placing a large rubbermaid lid over the top, helps to keep the magic boxes or K&H heated houses out most of the elements. When we get a few mild days or nights, the cats sometimes prefer to be out in the open for awhile.
The temperature the past two nights was in the mid 20’s. I was wondering what all of the cats would do for warmth. Shadow is usually the first in the heated house and he will stay put most of the night. Stellar comes and goes, but he too loves the warmth of the heated house. I was a bit concerned about Hampton as he had not been near the heated houses in weeks. In fact, Hampton had recently been taking up residence under the deck. I had placed one of the K&H heated houses under the deck. This was just in case Cisco decided to stop by and needed a warm bed. Yet, Hampton discovered it and was spending most of his time there. All I could think about was him becoming an “under the deck” kitty again. After 4-5 days of him being mostly under the deck, I decided to temporarily remove it. He was a bit upset at first, but I set it up under the table by my sliding door. He seemed content with the placement. Then with the cold the past two nights, he happily ventured into his heated house and stayed there most of both nights! It was the first time that all 3 cats were in the heated houses at the same time!! Shadow and Stellar are on the left and Hampton is on the right.
Hampton continues to progress. He loves loves loves to be pet. He will just come running when he sees me and snuggle up against my legs. I even lifted him a bit and tried to place him on my lap. He wasn’t thrilled, but he didn’t try to bite or swat me. He often sits and stares into the house by the sliding door. He loves to watch me when I am in the kitchen. He truly has made remarkable strides from the kitty who lived exclusively under my deck for over 6 months.
He does have days where he is a bit socially awkward. He will watch Shadow and Stellar playing in the yard then run out and jump on top of one of them. He must use his claws as there is often fur flying. Shadow and Stellar are not happy about this behavior. Yet, they also do not seem frightened by it either. I would say they are more annoyed. Occasionally Hampton will corner one of them in a feeding station and swat at them. He does not seem to be mean or aggressive at all, just not socially with it! I have no idea how you teach a cat to not be socially awkward when interacting with other cats. I hope Shadow and Stellar continue to model good behavior and that eventually Hampton will catch on. He still has a lot of learning to do.