From Pipi’s Pasture: Bud and Patches | CraigDailyPress.com

From Pipi’s Pasture: Bud and Patches

Diane Prather/For Craig Press

We live in a troubled world, at present. Considering all the violence and dissension, it's a negative world, indeed. However, if we look around, we can find plenty of positives, too. Sometimes, even the smallest things make us smile. For example, my family and I enjoy watching Bud and Patches, two cats that live here at Pipi's Pasture.

First, I need to explain there are quite a lot of outdoor cats around here, of every age, size, and color. Some of them, one female cat, in particular, live here all the time and have for years. Other cats, mostly the males, come and go. Some cats belong somewhere else and just visit. In any case, I put cat food out in several locations around Pipi's Pasture, and in return, the cats keep the mice population down.

Bud, a solid black male, came to live with us last July, when our son, Jamie, and family made a move from Bailey, Colorado. I thought Bud might not stick around, but he was gentle, so he settled in and made Pipi's Pasture his home. When spring arrived, we didn't see as much of Bud. He was busy courting the females.

One day, early in the spring, Bud brought a female cat to the house and showed her where the food could be found on the front porch. I first saw them as they ate together from the pan. Since she

has a patchwork pattern of yellow, tan, brown, black, orange, and white on her fur, I have been calling her Patches. It was the first time I had seen this cat.

Bud and Patches have been together since. Their couple relationship seems a little unusual to us, because we don't recall seeing paired up cats before. Wherever Patches had lived before didn't seem to matter; she has made Pipi's Pasture her home.

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One day, maybe at the beginning of summer, our granddaughter, Megan, spotted Bud and Patches with a kitten. Dad and Mom walked side-by-side, and the little black fur ball trotted along beside. Then, three of them came up on the porch and shared cat food.

Eventually, the kitten learned to come up the front porch steps by himself, while Bud and Patches rested happily in the shade of the big trees out front. They were proud parents, indeed.

Then, one morning Megan and I found the baby dead in the front. There was no evidence that might indicate the baby had been killed by another cat or predator. Patches grieved for two days and nights, calling gently to her baby. Bud stayed with her. We can only hope they will raise another baby, maybe even a fall litter.

Since then, Bud and Patches are together, as usual. They eat side-by-side, and they sleep on some empty grain sacks in the carport where we store grain. They wander around the yard, checking out the various food locations, and rest in the shade of the yard trees. It's heartwarming to witness such a cat relationship.

It just goes to show — we can see some pretty neat things when take the time to observe.