The population of the tribe of feral cats at my campsite usually ranges from about 5 to 10 cats. This number of cats has afforded me a look at many of the “social” aspects of cats. How they interact and relate to their fellow cats.
And the social dynamics can usually get as complex and convoluted as a tribe of humans. And, as with human relationships, they have friends and enemies and rivals and lovers and acquaintances and sibling relationships, and etc.
Scaredy and Fatty are a case in point. Two sisters from the same litter four years ago. For their first two years they were best friends and inseparable companions. Sleeping together, romping in the woods together, licking and grooming each other, etc.
But then after Scaredy Cat’s first kitten was born — Mini Scaredy — a change gradually took place in their relationship. Mini Scaredy asserted herself as Scaredy Cat’s new best friend and inseparable companion. And it was the age-old story: “Two’s company, three’s a crowd.” And Fatty was gradually ostracized by the tribe. And eventually run out of my campsite by Mini Scaredy — who was much more aggressive and athletic than the passive Fatty.
Sadly, even Scaredy Cat would sometimes take part in the ostracism and run Fatty down the hill and up a tree. Though I always felt her heart wasn’t really in it. She had simply thrown her lot in with Mini Scaredy and was going along with her program.
Still, I remembered how close Fatty and Scaredy Cat had once been. And would feel bad for Fatty when I’d see her roaming like a pariah, alone and lonely on the outskirts of my campsite. Life is a soap opera I guess. Even for feral cats.