Last year, at the same time that my cat of 12 years passed on, a family of semi-feral cats was frequenting our back yard to eat, play and even nap. As time went on it became clear that the kittens (who both turned out to be female) were enamored with our Sean Bean and the feeling was mutual.
Uhura and Niobe with their mother in our back yard:
At first the girls would only come in as far as the kitchen, but they started coming in farther and staying longer. By the time winter hit its coldest they were always back at the window waiting to get in only 15 minutes after they’d left. We all agreed that this outside business was a waste of time and they became indoor cats.
The only problem was, we were a little uneducated about the reproductive process in cats and missed the boat in having Sean Bean neutered before our family grew. On April 15th we unexpectedly discovered 4 newborn kittens in a box in the dining room. This was a bit overwhelming, but it was manageable. Then, on April 21st there were no longer 4 kittens, but 9! Sean Bean very suddenly had an appointment with a surgeon.
Brand new babies:
As much as it caught us off guard, it was a wonderful experience. All 3 parents were incredibly involved. The mothers, Uhura and Niobe, took turns nursing the kittens and Sean Bean cuddled with his family (especially his baby-mamas) as often as he could. The kids loved it, and we had the privilege of socializing these precious things that would have stood horrible odds had they been born in the wild.
Cuddling with Daddy, my kitten covered in kittens, playing with Daddy:
Then Uhura started throwing up blood.
Fortunately she tested negative for the scary stuff and we were told it was likely a condition of the uterus that can arise after giving birth. Antibiotics and ovariohysterectomy were the prescribed course of treatment and seemed to do the trick. Pilling a semi-feral cat is quite an interesting experience, I have to say, especially when you’re required to do multiple pills twice a day.
Since then everyone’s been quite healthy and happy. You’d never know these kittens were born to semi-feral mothers and they’re all so good with the kids. They’re all quite loving and have incredible markings. In spite of this, we’ve only been able to place 3 of them in homes so far. A fourth adoption was subverted when another cat was given to the adoptive parent before she could come back for ours.
We need your help
I love these cats. They are my babies. They have never seen the inside of a cage and they deserve the best possible life a cat could have. Unfortunately that means finding them homes. As they grow they’re going to want their own territory or they’ll take over ours (I can’t begin to tell you how much cat hair I live with). Besides that, I have 2 human babies to care for and the costs of every day care as well as medical expenses for so many is just too much on top of everything else, however I’ll be damned if any of them end up in a shelter.
These cats are cute, they’re really really cute. They’re litter trained, they’re healthy and they’re great with kids. I’m starting this page in the hopes that the power of the intarwebs will help my babies find “forever” homes. I’ll add pictures and video, and hopefully pushing a bunch of content will tug at someone’s heartstrings enough to make something happen. For now you can check out baby pictures of both the new ones and the moms on my flickr stream – http://www.flickr.com/photos/spoiledlittlelucy and there are some newborn pics on mconnor’s.
In the mean time, if their stories touch you, but you can’t take one in for whatever reason, it’d be really awesome if you wanted to help cover their bills. The boys have all been neutered and microchipped and had their first round of shots, however they’re overdue for the next. The girls are still waiting their turn. They go through about $100 of food every 2 weeks, maybe less.
So far I’ve set up two ways to help:
Dreamhost discount – Enter CONNORCATS when creating a new account with Dreamhost. This will give you $25 of any subscription as well as a free domain registration. Contact me if you’re interested but would like something different, like extra bandwidth instead of a domain.
Paypal donation – use the button below to donate any amount you like, or contact me for more ways to donate through paypal