day two of dixie loss and i still have tears dripping this morning as i read the well wishes for her (and my) peace. lynne asked an interesting question...why do some stay terrified of humans and others come around?
i think it depends not only on how old they finally were when they engaged in human social interaction but also their basic personalities..out of the three fruitloops tang is totally socialized..mango is not far behind but still sometimes a little bit shy and sunny is usually shy and sketchy but he does have his brief and infrequent moments when he does like to be petted too. but all three revert to feral as soon as something makes them nervous or worried.
dix was always the worst of the half grown kittens trapped out of a train yard in boston bar...she wasn't just afraid of humans...she didn't like them at all. she also was a high strung torte and that didn't help with her socialization at all. the general rule with kittens tho is..they need to be socialized to humans by 6-8 weeks of age or with each week they grow older the acceptence of humans becomes less ingrained and more difficult. dix and her siblings were 4 or 5 months old when they came in..the rest all made some kind of connection with humans...dixie never really did (which was why i brought her home.)
anyway..feral cats are not my forte and dix was the reason i quit rescuing them altogether..i don't care if they don't like me but i have to be able to care for them if they get sick. and i knew the day would come when i would be helpless to help her if she needed even the simplest of hands on care. i have watched her matt up these past couple of years and i have watched as the heavy matts finally came loose and fell off only to matt up again..i have watched her get thinner this year despite all of the food i made sure she had. if she was a normal hyperthyroid cat, i should have been able to take her to the vet, get bloodwork done and give her a pill every day but that never happened because it was dixie and short of catch poling her or using a feral cat net or keeping her confined in a small cage so i had easy access... and continuing to do it daily to give her the meds, there was no way. so i made the decison to do nothing.
and that was a decision...i could have chosen to do something else...like catch her and make her accept whatever she needed...or catch her and euthanize her sooner if i was unwilling or unable to treat.
anyway..i don't know what the right and wrong is...feral cat people may tell me i should have...as may someone with what they think is a feral cat but really isn't...someone else who thinks more like i do might say you did the only thing you could do because she was a feral cat.
and this would be the problem with living..you really don't have all of the answers, you just feel like shit a lot of the time cuz you don't.
My dad once brought home 2 kittens from a place my aunt used to work at.Supposedly they were brothers.George and Freeway were older kittens.We got them fixed,etc. For Freeway...no matter how hard we tried,he always remained feral. His brother was a complete opposite.He had to be with humans.
I'll never know what happened to Freeway.He never came home one day.Perhaps he just decided he needed his freedom away from humans....