We have two types of cats that live here on the farm.
The Hunters: You can't help but notice their beauty. Their coats are thick and glossy. In the cold they fur is perfectly groomed and fluffed for maximum warmth. Their eyes are clear and bright. When they see us they might walk over with dignity and rub against your leg. They acknowledge our ownership of the farm but do not need us to have a good life. We respect their efforts to keep our food stores safe from mice. They are frequently seen with a fat mouse, bird or mole. We will reward them with food from time to time and they seem to appreciate it but eat it with dignity.
The Porch Cats: They are a scroungy bunch. Their fur is ruffled and dirty. Their eyes are cloudy, runny and dull. They are skinny and sickly. They position themselves on our porch by the door for the chance to dash into the house to grab a noodle out of the chicken bucket. They dash in quickly when they have the chance and hide. When we find them they clutch and claw us as we put them back out the door. The wait on the porch for any handout. They never leave so they wont miss the chance to run into the house. They urinate on the porch. They sleep in the cold with very little shelter. They are desperate for my handouts.
I do feel bad about the state of the Porch Cats. The Porch Cats always have lots of babies that they don't take care of and abandon them. They just seem to show up. I haven't the money to purchase them cat food. Their numbers swell if they are well fed. I do give them my food scraps and when it is real cold I give them dog food. It is much cheaper then cat food. From my perspective they are worse them the mice they are supposed to hunt. We have tried to get them off the porch by putting food, water and hay in a horse trailer some distance from the porch. They still sit on the porch waiting for a chance to grab a noodle and never enjoy the fattened mouse.
I challenge my children to be Hunters not