Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Murray Comes Out of Hiding

At Social Tees Shelter, there is a front window area where we always keep a few cats, and recently some new cats came in when we were full to bursting, so a couple of them went straight into the window area. It became clear that one of the new cats was terrified in there, hiding behind the litter box which is set inside a box there. I decided to climb into the window area to see if I could coax him out.

I moved the litter box away and started out by speaking very softly to little Murray (pictured above). As I didn't know whether he would try to bite or scratch, I started out by doing some circles and strokes on him with a long-handled paintbrush, starting out on his head and then moving down to the body. I could see his body becoming more comfortable, spreading out a bit as I was working on him. He was still a bit puzzled but seemed to know that I was trying to help him. Little by little I worked my hand down the handle of the paintbrush until I was TTouching him with my hand. While I was doing this, I had my body sideways to him and was not looking directly at him, mostly out of the corner of my eye. I did some clouded leopard touches down his body, ear strokes and raccoon touches on his head, and he began to rub himself against me a bit. I gave him some wet food, which he began to eat ravenously, as though he had not eaten in a long time, and I continued to touch him as he ate, which seemed to make him even more at ease eating.

After I had worked on him for a while, I felt I was going to be able to get him into a carrier to move him to a cage by himself, so a carrier was put next to me. I told him what I was going to do, and he really did not resist at all when I picked him up to put him in the carrier, as though he understood that I was going to take him to a place that felt better than where he was.

Once I put him in a cage with food and water, I did some TTouch on him again, and he began to eat again, still seeming to be really hungry, and as though he finally felt comfortable. Here he is, pictured below, finally relaxing in a cage by himself, He was just too scared in that window area with the other cats, people walking by and looking in, etc. - that was just too much for him. But he seemed just so calm and grateful once he was in a cage by himself. I was also very glad I had been able to get him in a cage to get a better look at him, as the poor boy had an abrasion on his neck so I was able to treat it. He is such a sweet boy. I hope he will be going to a forever home soon.

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