We have been without a barn cat since August when our barn cat, CC mysteriously died. She was a wonderful mouser...keeping our barn and basement clear of all types of "varmints". She was always on the lookout. In the three months we have been without her, my husband began noticing a huge increase in our mice population.
He began looking on Craigslist for free cats or kittens in our area. He found an ad posted by a family who lived on a farm but was selling out and moving to town. They had a cat and 5 kittens that needed a home. The ad stated that she was a great mouser but they couldn't vouch for the dad -- he was a "no count" wanderer.
Three or four weeks later we decided to contact this family. We went out on a Saturday to see how many "mousers" they might have left. We found a mama cat and two kittens waiting for us on their front porch. We definitely wanted the mama cat since she was an "experienced" mouser, but wasn't really interested in the kittens. We petted the mama cat and she was very friendly and sweet...then we made a mistake. We reached in the kennel and picked up the two kittens - one gray and the other yellow. They were both so soft and sweet and warm...there is nothing like sweet kittens. The family mentioned their daughter had become attached to the little gray kitten, so before we knew it, we were headed to the truck with both the mama cat and the orange kitten.
These cats have been so much fun. They are very attached to each other and are happiest curled up together. The mama cat was already named Lou Lou. I tend to all her "Mama Lou" (sounds like a dorm mother's name, doesn't it?). The yellow kitten did not have a name yet. Our son, Joseph, was in from college for Thanksgiving that week. He decided that since it had "red hair" then it needed to be named one of the Weasley boys' names from Harry Potter. He landed on Percy and so our yellow kitten is now Percy. Percy is extremely playful and plays with the rugs, string, empty boxes, his mama's tail...anything that catches his eye. Percy is a little more fearful of the world on the farm than his mother is. We have had to rescue him from climbing trees twice. Hopefully as his size increases his bravery will too.
Percy likes to keep me company outside the kitchen window while I'm washing dishes. How sweet is that?