My neighbour has two elderly cats who live most of their lives outdoors, more by mischance than by choice as they have to be let in and out, and end up more frequently out than in.
The weather has not been kind up here in Yorkshire. Until a few days ago it seemed the rain would never stop, and it was the worst kind of rain to be sheltering from; alternating bursts of heavy downpours followed by fine drizzle blown sideways by a northerly wind. Now temperatures have dropped and although it’s dry, it’s icy and cold.
We couldn’t bear the sight of these cats huddling on a wet doorstep any longer and before Christmas we provided them with a cardboard box under the cover of our open porch. I’ve made catboxes like this before, insulated with layers of bubblewrap and waterproofed with clingfilm so it’s sturdy and warm.
Both cats took up residence without hesitation the moment they saw it and are now curled up together inside for most of the day and all night. One comes out to greet me immediately every time I appear (so it’s hard to photograph them both together in the box) and purrs louder than any cat I’ve ever heard.
If this isn’t the definition of warmth I don’t know what is; they are warm and dry, and we are all the better for the pleasure of their company and knowing they’re sheltered and safe. Warm cats, and warm hearts!