Once upon a time, there were two feral cats named Maggie and Glen. After being trapped together, they were brought to the shelter where they faced a very uncertain future. Despite being quite ordinary looking, and not very friendly, they caught the eye of a staff member who happened to live on 5 acres of land and was able to offer them a home. Instead of being euthanized, Maggie and Glenn are living their best feral lives and their story is pretty interesting.
At the shelter, Maggie and Glenn were not only miserable, they were angry. They would lash out, hissing and swatting if you so much as looked at them. No doubt that they were as feral as could be, which ironically wound up being good for them, as our staff member was looking for a cat that would not approach people. She was actually looking for only one cat, but since they had been trapped together, she decided to keep them together.
Of course, they were spayed and neutered prior to starting their new life (it’s essential to ensure that starting their new best life is the ONLY lives that they would be starting!). They stayed in a chicken coop for a time to adjust to their new surroundings, then were released to the great outdoors, where they joyfully disappeared for several weeks. Concerned, their new family got a trail camera to see what the cats were up to and success! Maggie and Glen made frequent appearances on the trail cam and it became a family event to check on them. They really seem to be enjoying their lives and the family has the added benefit of meeting wildlife via the trail cam as well!
Maggie and Glenn are fed every day – same place and same time to maintain stability. In the winter, they are provided with cozy cat houses to keep warm. When our staff member noticed that Maggie appeared to have an eye infection, medication was provided and she was more closely watched until she was feeling better.
More recently, Maggie has been staying closer to the house and not running away when people approach. Now she meows at her family – this may be due to the offering of canned food in the evening!
Just this week, for the first time, her caregiver was able to gently pet her head – and Maggie didn’t run away. Glenn, while more hesitant and remote, had a big development this week too. When Maggie was receiving her first pet, Glen was watching – and he chirped! We think he’s been watching Maggie’s progression and we are curious to see if he decides to start making appearances as well.
What started out as a “charity” case became a fun and rewarding project; she’s surprised at how much she enjoys her outside companions. A cat’s ideal placement is a home where they can have comfy beds, silly cat toys, and the lap and love of someone who adores them. But Maggie and Glenn have made it clear that a safe placement outdoors may be a more than fair option for feral cats.
At South Jersey Regional Animal Shelter, we have many cats and even some kittens that would love for you to let them live their best outdoor life.
These cats are happy to work and would eagerly accept employment at a farm, winery, landscaping company, garden center, or other outdoor type business that could use some paws to take care of rodents. They would also be happy to live with a family with some extra outdoor space and a soft spot in their hearts for wild things. You can check out our “Agent” cats on our adoptable pet page on our website or ask our staff. They range from truly feral cats to those that are social but just prefer the outdoor life, however, all of them are hoping to be given the same chance Maggie and Glenn were.