When you are tending a large feral cat colony a few cats carve out a special place in your heart. Fuzzy claimed her spot very quickly. Fuzzy was born to Mama, the original feral who settled in on our property, before we began our trap, neuter, and release (TNR) program. It takes only a cursory look at the breeze ruffling her coat to see why she was christened Fuzzy.
Fuzzy was a special to us and to the other cats in the colony. Although she kept her distance from us she somehow formed an undeniable bond. Other cats seemed to gravitate to her. They wanted to nap with her and wander the grounds with her.
When Fuzzy was nursing her litter, other kittens wanted to join her family. The gray kitten climbing over Fuzzy’s back in the photo is Mini-Mo, a kitten from another cat’s litter. Fuzzy never seemed to mind and often baby-sat for other cats. It was after Fuzzy and a few of her contemporaries had litters of their own that we admitted to ourselves that things had to change and learned about and implemented TNR.
Fuzzy got her name from her coat, but her littermates were named after pro golfers. We were searching around for names and recalled Fuzzy Zoeller, one of the real characters on the pro golf tour. One littermate became Chi-Chi, after Chi-Chi Rodriguez. Two other kittens were indistinguishable at first, so we named them The Wadkins, after sibling golfers Lanny and Bobby Wadkins. When they matured and were individually identifiable they became Lanny and Bobby. That’s Bobby relaxing with Fuzzy, after Bobby’s developing brownish coat distinguished him from Lanny.
Fuzzy lived a good, long life. When she was gone it took some time for the colony to reorganize into new groups because Fuzzy had been such a good friend to so many. We missed her just as much as they did.
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