We had a desperate need for a competent barn car. Chile Pepper, while adorable, would only kill a mouse if he tripped over it. Maybe. One day we stopped by the no-kill shelter that ran adoption days at PetSmart. Knowing that shelters are rather picky about who is allowed to adopt their animals, we laid it out up front: we are looking for a barn cat. She will have the best food, excellent vet care, a warm kennel in the winter, but she will never be in the house. She will live in the barn.

"Do we have the cat for you!"

Sassafras (or Sassy) had been living at their shelter for over a year. She had personality "issues." She bit. She scratched. She hated children, and didn't get along with other animals. She was perfect!. We took her home and she settled right in. After she made it clear to Chile who was boss, she scoured the place for vermin.

Sassy's temperment remained a challenge. She was lovey-dovey up to the point where she bit you. Once we learned to respect her limits we got along fine. Her favorite thing was helping in the garden.

When we sold the farm she stayed. We have been back to visit a few times, but have lost touch over the years.

Sassy on porchAt one point we had planters on the back patio that just matched Sassy's fur: red, grey & white. She loved to nestle in the camouflage.


This is a more typical independent look.

Like most cats she was immaculate. Even though she lived in a barn and spent her days hunting, she was always ready to be presented to the queen.

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