Cat Fight: The Sequel
So, the last time we left off with the cat feud between Keeko and Spot, I wasn’t quite sure if Spot was going to survive the farm life.
Although we initially had thought that Keeko wanted a friend, it turned out that he was quite content being Lone Cat of the Farm.
Once Spot came into the picture, Keeko wasn’t having any of it. He turned into a bully of epic proportions. He chased Spot into hiding, and would even sit in front of Spot’s hole in the haystacks to ensure there was no escape.
Keeko was claiming his territory and all of his sheep and donkey friends, who were his, and his alone.
Well, I have to tell you, I had very little patience for Keeko’s nonsense during that time. I spent days trying to help Spot to acclimatize to his new home.
But even when Keeko wasn’t around, it didn’t matter. Spot had been conditioned to fear stepping out of his hole in the haystacks.
Every time I tried to pick up Spot to bring him a bit further out into the real world, he’d try to claw his way back into hiding.
How will Spot ever become an independent farm cat? I wondered, doubtfully.
Then, one day, I saw Keeko and Spot sitting next to each other in the barn. I almost fell over.
But any celebration to be had was short lived. For the next day, Keeko was at it again.
Any time Keeko saw Spot roaming around the barn, he would chase him straight back into the hole.
Some mornings, I’d walk in to find Keeko prowling the premises like a hunter-stalker, searching for Spot who had changed hiding holes overnight.
Sometimes though, Spot would try to stand his ground. He’d hiss and growl at Keeko, which seemed to ward off his tormentor. At least for the time being.
There’s only so much you can do to mediate a cat feud, as I learned. Eventually, I had to just let nature take its course.
A few months after it all begin, the battle between Keeko and Spot came to an historic end. They started eating next to each other, sniffing each other’s butts, and just generally co-habitating in peace.
I don’t know that we could call them friends just yet. But seeing Spot living outside of the hole in the haystacks was an epic milestone that deserved a plaque on the wall.
One day, we spotted Keeko hobbling around, a huge gash in his leg. After executing some makeshift operation procedures in the food shed, we had wrapped a bandage around Keeko’s injury, which he immediately tore off in disdain.
How exactly was he supposed to hunt down farm mice with an immobilized hunting leg?
Well, Keeko was clearly getting into some trouble that we didn’t know about. A few days later, Antonio and I drove out of the farm. Alongside the road, Antonio suddenly spotted a familiar figure.
“Hey, is that Keeko?” he asked.
There was a flash of white weaving through the tall, green grasses that bordered the farm’s perimeter.
“Stop the truck!” I yelled.
Antonio braked, and I rolled down my window. “Keeko!”
The white figure glanced back. Indeed, it was Keeko, up to very little good.
“Where the hell are you going?!” I asked him. “This is why you’re getting all beat up!”
Keeko had been found out. Busted, he dashed back in the direction of the farm.
But one day, Keeko disappeared again. And the cat didn’t come back the very next day. Or the day after that.
I kept thinking that, at any moment, I’d see that white furball emerge from the fields. Yet, a week passed and Keeko never returned. We still haven’t seen him.
Ever since Keeko disappeared, Spot has been crying an awful cry every day, all day. It’s as though he’s been calling out for Keeko, his tormentor-turned-sort-of-friend. Or, perhaps, Spot is in deep mourning for the befallen Cat of the Farm.
We can only assume that Keeko is now in Cat Heaven. Or that maybe he got picked up by another family, who is pampering him with a life of comfort and female cat companions.
Either way, we hope you’re in a better place, Keeko. Thank you for your contributions to the farm while you were here with us. You were definitely a farm tough cat of the highest honour.