Strays – Got the Jimmy Legs


I skipped the line, I paid my dime

In an effort to both clean up this site a little and cross-pollinate my stuff, I edited this home page slightly. I've added a list of cats we have up for adoption, which I assume I'll keep updated as needed. Now, normally we only advertise for cats who are currently under our roof, and several of these cats are not technically residents. But they live right outside among the ferals, but have proven themselves tame and friendly enough to warrant a mention. I've also included longtime holdouts Augie and Marbles; I don't really think they'll get adopted as they are really bad at selling themselves … and we've sort of gotten attached to them in the meantime. But hey, if the right people come along, who knows? So that leaves Spike and Haley as 'classic' adoptable cats, living with us but with every intention to move them out once we find a decent home.

Spike is still with us, we've decided he can only go to a home as an only-cat. He just doesn't get along with other cats well enough. He's a real people-pleaser otherwise. Haley finally got spayed a few days ago, so she's all set. I'm having a hard time describing her personality since most of the time we had her she was in heat. She's very different now that she's not constantly rolling around yowling, holding her butt up in the air and running in place. Time will tell.

You may also note Ainslie on the adoption list, he's a recent TNR guy who just decided to reveal how tame he is as well. I kinda figured he was tame but I thought it would take months to win him over. Naw; just a plate of canned food did it. The number of tame cats around is setting a dangerous precedent (namely, our house full of tame cats) so we're trying to be more aggressive with the adoptions. If we can't find a good home for Spike, we're campaigning to get him in on an Empty Cages Collective Adoption Event, which have a great track record for finding homes. Haley will also get in on this, although there's a waiting list for getting in. How New York.

Twist away the gates of steel

Sheer Hatred, originally uploaded by Jimmy Legs.

My company is now officially another company. Whoopee. The last week has been super annoying, the kind of week that makes me want to push people's buttons just because you know you can quickly have them as annoyed as you are. This is the kind of week that you almost wish for a crowded subway, just so you have an excuse to elbow a stranger in the ribs. Luckily, this is a wish I don't have to hold my breath to get on a regular basis.

I supposed over all the transition has been pretty smooth, I just have lots of tedious stuff to do, people pushing me from all sides even though none of them really know what they want. They just know somebody is supposed to be doing something, so everybody's been running around like their hair's on fire, if only to look like they know what's going on.

I skipped a company party to pick up some TNR cats from the shelter. It's times like these I suspect my priorities need to be reevaluated. But then I remember that trapping wild cats doesn't adequately fund the lifestyle I enjoy that has proper resources to trap and hold feral cats. Then I shut up and I get back to work. You should get back to work too.

Say it soft and it's almost like praying


This one may not be as impressive, since the cat was more or less full grown when we first took her in. This is Gladys, who became the first stray to be taken in for the express purpose of spaying her and adopting her out. She showed up over the summer, with a litter of kittens somewhere on the block. She was super skittish at first, but quickly warmed up and started entering the house, mostly to play with cat toys and growl at the other cats. Once a resident, along with her 3 kittens, they doubled the number of cats in the house, which at the time felt overwhelming. Ha. When not threatened by the other cats (or her own kittens), she was an awesome cat, we had misgivings about adopting her out, but it was the correct move considering how many more cats would follow suit.

We got some interest in her on Craig's List, and had a woman come to see her. Gladys didn't 'show' well: She was being super lame, feeling that all the attention was suspect, and didn't really display her more endearing qualities. Lucky for us, the woman's friend had lots of cat experience and could see she was worthwhile, so Gladys ended up moving to a cat-free house in Gowanus. She's reportedly much happier, which seems evident from these photos. She loved sleeping on the bed, but because of all the other cats, she usually ended up having to beat a hasty retreat, growling all the way. Now she gets to hog the bed 24/7! It's funny to look at these pictures now, previously I thought of her as somewhat roly-poly, but here, if anything, she looks skinny. Maybe my perspective has changed since our cats are several pounds overweight now. Gotta start a Kitty Gym.

Speaking of cats that don't get along so great with other cats: 'Mona' the lovely little gray and white cat has finally been adopted! She will be picked up tonight and taken to her new home on the north side of Bushwick. I like it when the cats get to stay in the vicinity, I don't know why.

Goin' to a place where the tough guys go

In the Pokey, originally uploaded by Jimmy Legs.

I can't wait for this week to be over! so much annoying stuff going on with my job; I think some of my coworkers spend all day, every day attending meetings. They do nothing else, just go from meeting to meeting, all the time. This is my theory, anyway. They don't mind meetings that stretch on for hours, they never need to take a breath, they just keep on talking. And god help you if they get near a video projector. Anyway, that answered a lot of questions to me as to why it takes so long to do stuff around here: everybody is in meetings all the time. Or conference calls. It's unbelievable.

Meanwhile, the TNR train keeps on truckin'. Our 7 ferals are back on the street, and seems to be no worse for the wear. Some, like Grumpus, even seem friendlier than they were pre-surgery. Last night, Grumpus was eating by the window, I reached out and petted him. He didn't even flinch! Makes me think he may not be a real feral, which is sort of sad. But he's got food and he's got shelter (storage tub!), so he's doing all right.

Traps are being set again, to catch whoever we can in advance of Saturday's TNR action. BARC is again hosting the Snip Truck, and can take a lot of cats, so we're gonna try to catch the few remaining stragglers fixed. This will be run much like the Mobile Spay Unit Days, if you have a non-feral cat, you can get it clipped for $25. The cats have to be there by 9am Saturday, no food after midnight Friday. They truck will be there, so let's fill it up. I suspect 15-odd cats we've altered so far may not in fact be all the unfixed stray cats in Brooklyn.

Ironically, I find all this cat-trapping, carting around, and urine-cleaning to be less stressful than my day job, even though I get to sit in front of computer, hardly moving all day. Except when I'm running from one meeting to the next.

email me jimmy at if you need more info about fixing your ferals or house pets. I think they do dogs, too.

It's my cat in a box

Tuxedo Lady, originally uploaded by Jimmy Legs.

A total of 6 feral cats and one indoor cat are being fixed over at BARC right now. After Wednesday's bumper crop of 4 (Grumpus, George, Blue and Tuxedo), I set up the 3 remaining traps and by bedtime we had two more (Mugsy and Baxter)! This worked out well, as Jeannie had literally said she wanted to catch these very two cats for her birthday, which is today. It could only have worked out better if they had gift-wrapped their traps.

They were not happy campers; Mugsy, especially, was crazy, rolling around in his trap and generally making an embarrassing spectacle of himself. I put them in the cellar for the night and when I came back in the morning, both had calmed down quite a bit. It's like they accept their fate or something. Or maybe a night sleeping in a warm house far outweighed any resentment they might have felt.

I dropped them off with Tumbleweed at BARC, I'll be picking up the latter after work. The rest will go home on Saturday. I don't think they'll care, but I feel a little bad sticking them right back out in the yard after spending several days in a climate-controlled environment. but hey, maybe they'll actually use the cat condos with some frequency!

Through this all, Freddie the Outdoor Cat oversaw the process. Despite apparent hunger, however, she avoided all the traps, even though it meant waiting on getting fed. I don't know if this proves she's smarter than the other cats or what, but I'm glad we didn't have any false-positives by finding her in the traps.

There will be one more Spay Day on Sunday, so I'm gonna keep trying to trap cats. Off the top of my head I know Chauncey, BabyMomma and Marbles are still out there. Cauncey is owned by somebody, but they let him run around unfixed. Marbles also appears to be owned by some people across the street, she too is unaltered and has been pregnant twice in the past year, though her litters mysteriously disappear long before they should. So in any case, these cats ought to be fixed.

Pictured above is Tuxedo (never thought of a catchier name), the lone female we captured. Females are either smarter or naturally more suspicious, so we don't get many to the yard. But I'm glad we got her, as I'd seen her (from a distance) with child several times over the past year. Getting her spayed will put a real dent in the local cat population. I hope!

More photos of the SoBu TNR