|This picture of Monk was taken last spring.|
|Monk drinking out of the bird bath.|
This winter we have put a heated pet bed on a chair so that Monk would have a warm place to sleep when the weather was snowy and temperatures dipped below zero. We also have a space heater that we left on during the day. We would leave the door open wide enough for Monk to come inside...and he finally got courage enough to do so. He even began taking naps in the heated bed. We have pondered getting a pet flap for the porch...but so far have not done that. I wonder if Monk would come inside if he could not be assured an open door where he can escape.
|Monk in his heated bed.|
Monk has us trained to have breakfast ready around 8:30 so that he can have a nice nap in the heated bed. He then leaves (and we wonder if he might have some other neighbors trained for his brunch) and returns for his dinner at 6:30. He will then take another nap but leave for the night. We close the door and perform the same routine each day.
When the weather gets warm, Monk will be fed outside. In fact we have a heated house for him there...but he has shown no interest...so that little house sadly sits next to the heated birdbath that have for the deer, birds, squirrels and Monk.
Last night Ray said. "There is activity on the porch." He had set up a surveillance camera to show any activity on the porch. He gets a message on his phone if there is something going on.
"We have some uninvited visitors."
I knew it! I had feared that the raccoons would find our porch and wondered why we had not seen any. I know the damage raccoons can be and envisioned this one using his little hands to open the plastic container of food. I jumped up, looked out the window and saw two uninvited guests. One raccoon (Rocky) and one opossum (Paulie). They had finished all of Monk's food (he always leaves some in the bowl) and the raccoon was on the chair ready to settle in the heated bed. The opossum was just standing next to the heater.
|Paulie: I took this from the video clip. I did not get|
a clear picture of Rocky.
I got a broom to shoo them off the porch. Rocky waddled out quickly. Paulie just stared at me. I thought he was going to roll over and play dead. If so, I could just use the snow shovel to pick him up and move him outside. (I learned that from my niece, Maggie. She had an opossum that would taunt her dog...and would play dead when she came out...so she would just shovel him over the fence.) But Paulie was not playing dead....he just watched me with those piercing little eyes. By this time Ray came out with a longer broom and nudged Paulie out the door. Paulie protested just a bit...giving the broom a few nips...but finally scooted from the porch.
|Rocky and Paulie...blurry...but I was trying to get|
a quick shot before hustling them out the door.
Now we will have to be more careful. Monk will have to be satisfied with daytime use of the porch...and since it is getting warmer, he will be eating outside. He has let us know that he wants to remain an outside cat. When spring arrives, I hope to have the porch cleaned up so that our two new kitties, Ary and Molly can enjoy being out there. Until then, Monk is welcome to come out of the cold.
|Molly and Ary at a quiet time.|