Jul 17, 2012

Rare Capture

gray cow cat in fading light
IN FADING LIGHT: It was starting to get dark and I was doing my last round of feeding.... I always have a small pocket camera with me but if I use it at these times, it's after the feeding is done; I can't juggle cans of food, a bucket of dry food and a camera all at once!

So as the light waned, I was just doing my thing, feeding over by the burned-out cat trailer, when I saw this beauty (above). I had seen this girl(?) before: I knew this kitty had been in the feral colony for at least a couple of years, maybe longer, but I had never got a close-up look ..and not ONE photo!  Too shy, too quick to run away.  I saw her only from a distance.

I don't know if this gray and white "cow cat" (as I call the color pattern) was living off of hunting or if it snuck a bite of food after I left, I just knew I didn't see it at feedings, and only caught an occasional glimpse from far away.  But on this evening, suddenly there she was ... gray and white cow cat!

In my heart, I knew it was now or never. Even though my hands were filled with stuff for feeding the cats, I groped my pocket and pulled out the little camera - trying to avoid spilling the cat food at the same time. As I did this, gray-white cow cat began to walk away...  I could see this out of the corner of my eye. Yet there was no way to hurry, and even if I could rush the process, I knew that turning suddenly would make this ultra-shy kitty run.  I tried to remain calm, knowing after these years this might be my only chance at a photo.

I got the camera running an moved the zoom to max, all without looking toward the kitty to see if she was still there. When the camera was ready, I gently turned to look into the rubble of the destroyed cat trailer, only to see her walking away from me. Well, at least I could get a shot of her receding form, it would be better than nothing.

As I raised the camera to my eye, Gray-White Cow Cat turned one last time and looked at me. It was a pause that she'd never made before. She never had given me even half a chance to photograph her. ...Until now.


Kitties come and go in our lives, and feral cats live their own lives largely in anonymity. I record them so that they will be remembered; so that they will remain a part of our family.

For this one moment, Gray-White Cow Cat decided to share her life with us. She paused and contemplated. But only for an instant...

...And then she was gone.



  1. She's beautiful and you got a great shot of her, a record she exists.

  2. That's how I feel about it. I think she might have been in a group I trapped a few years ago but didn't get a picture at the time. And it might be odd, but I do feel the need to give the cats' lives some ...I don't know what you'd call it .... to let the world know that they exist. Trying to talk about this makes me feel inarticulate. *sigh*

  3. A lot of words come to mind but I can't think of the right one, either. However, you're not articulate. That was lovely, and so is the shot, and so is she.

  4. INarticulate. You're not INarticulate. Argh. Apparently, I certainly am.

  5. Thank you so much. I know what is in my heart but it's not always easy to put it in writing.

  6. She's a beauty and so are the other kitties whose images you have captured forever on film. I wish we could save them all, Chriss. They need us and whatever we can do to help them is well worth it. You are their hero.


Comments are welcome! I always answer questions if I can.