Visit the Cat Ranch

 
 
 
                           
 
Sehnsational Cat Ranch is only a few miles from the Arizona - Sonoran Desert Museum, a wonderful garden of desert plants and animals.  
   
 
 The Cat Palace -a safe place of their own


There are two large enclosure on the north side of the Cat Palace, and three slightly smaller runs on the south side. We are constantly inspecting the structures to ensure security from predators, both small and large.

 
Rattlesnakes have invaded on three occasions in the past, and scorpions more often than I can count. Both rattlers and scorpions are considered prey by the cats. One diamond back was found with two cat-fang marks on the back of the neck, killed either by Maakowdee's 2Slick, or by Mia Ching's En Thiam. Scorpions are usually found dead, their heads eaten off, with no sign of injury to any of the cats.
 
So far, no invaders have survived except one rattlesnake flushed out of the north enclosure by a stream of water fearlessly directed at it by my housekeeper. Recent improvements to the enclosres have made visits by wandering snakes much less likely.

 
 
 
 
 
 
My "south lawn."
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  
 
The desert can be a forbidding place. One spring evening, I spoke with a little girl who had tears in her eyes as she pulled cactus spines out of her thumb. She told me she doesn't like Tucson because "Everything bites," even the vegetation.
  
  
 
 
 
Early evening at Sehnsational Cat Ranch
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  
 
 
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
At twilight the spines on the teddy bear cholla promise soft fur, the yellow blossoms of the creosote mirror the gold of the setting sun.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Coyotes live and breed on this part of the property and will kill and consume any escaping felines. If one is quiet and the moon is full, the yapping of the coyote pack -- right over there in the little dry wash -- reminds one of gossips' competing for airspace.   
 
Bobcats have been seen on the property, and there are at least two mountain lions in the Tucson Mountain region of the Saguarn National Park, which borders the property.  While we have not seen these large predators, our property is part of their territory and their tracks have been found near the cat house. During spring and fall, we leave lights on to discourage the lions' attempting to break into the enclosures.   
 
Javalinas are not predatory to the cats, but can be very destructive as they nose their way around the property looking for food.  
 
  
Night falls....
  

 
...mournng doves roost in the Ironwoods,
 Gambel's Quail retreat to the creosote bushes,
 night creatures come out of their burrows,
 
 
 
 
and human beings enjoy the cool evening hours sitting on the patio and sipping margaritas. 
 
 
 ~~~
 
It is a pleasure to share our unique Sonoran Desert with our friends and to show off our cats as well. 
 
To contact us before planning your visit to Tucson, e-mail us at:   sehnscats@msn.com , or phone Laura at 520-616-7183.

Susan C. Sehn -- Sehnsational Cat Ranch
Laura Ratliff  --   Goldspurrs Bengals


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