Behind too many office buildings, theaters, restaurants, or shopping malls lives one or more families of stray cats. A similar scene unfolds near any dumpster or natural source of water. Our parents called them alley cats. "Strays," we mutter, although the correct term may actually be feral. A stray cat is one that has had contact with people at some point in its life, while a feral cat has been completely alone and wild since birth.

There are so many strays that we are immune to their existence. It's not that we ignore them;  we rarely even see them. As with the human homeless, they remain nameless and faceless, and many prefer it that way. In fact, if we really look in their eyes and recognize the hunger and fear as primal instincts that we, too, can have, it stirs our guilt.

Although alley cats are certainly not exclusively an urban problem, the focus of our photographs is "city cats." We choose this designation for our cats and kittens, since ours all live in large metropolitan environments.

We are not modest;  like an unfolding drama, our pictures and stories will involve you in the ongoing lives and problems of these little street warriors. You will not be able to overlook either the obstacles they face or the joy they find in living.

alleycatphotos.com
photos by Knox    |   text by Sara Neeley
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