A Guest Post by Tricia Cody and Jay Bartlett
Callie and Betty joined our family at Rally C Ranch from the APA! Barn Cat program in April, 2014. We had known about the barn cat program for some time. So, when we bought our ranch in Elgin and moved the horses in, it became clear that we either needed barn cats or mouse traps! We chose barn cats and haven’t regretted that decision for a single moment!
Here are the top 5 reasons adopting APA! barn cats is a great idea!
5. Callie and Betty have virtually eliminated the mice in our barn creating a healthier atmosphere for us, our horses, and our chickens. They also go after the gophers and moles that wreak havoc on our pastures. One morning when Jay let the kitties out after breakfast, Betty ran out into the pasture, killed a mole and brought it back into the feed room and dropped it in front of Jay! She was so proud of herself!
4. Kitties in a barn make it feel like home. The girls keep track of the horses and monitor us during feeding to make sure all the horses get fed before coming into the feed room for their dinner. They play in the pastures with the horses, and chase and tackle in the evenings when it cools off.
3. Seeing feral kitties come running and meowing for cookies when they hear “hellloooo kitties!” is so great!
2. Providing a home to a bonded pair of kitties who might otherwise have been euthanized or had to live on the street is an awesome feeling!
1. And the number one reason for adopting feral barn kitties is: How awesome it feels when you come home from vacation, and of all the horses, corgis, chickens and cats (house and barn), the feral barn kitties were the most visibly excited to see us! We went for a walk through the horse pastures the morning after we got home from vacation to check on the horses. Callie and Betty walked the pasture with us as if to let us know they were glad we were home and to show us how well they took care of the ranch in our absence!
Callie and Betty have taken ownership of their ranch and love living in their barn with their horses and their chickens. They wander off and hunt sometimes during the day. However, most of the time, when we are in the barn Callie and Betty are nearby. Callie lets us pet her somewhat regularly now and we are pretty sure that Betty won’t be far behind. The girls took some time to adjust but now follow a regular routine of coming in the feed room at night, after the horses are fed, for their delicious canned food dinner. We close them in overnight for safety, as coyotes and other predators also live in the area.
If you would like to learn more about Callie and Betty and how awesome APA! barn cats are, please come follow our rescue horses’ Facebook page. We welcome visitors too!
Learn more about the APA! Barn Cat Program and share this story to spread the love on National Feral Cat Day!