I apologize for not posting to the blog sooner. I have been busy with the momma and her kittens, a couple of sick kitties and trying to polish up my children’s book dummy.
I am doing research on kidney issues in cats. And, will post information I found and some links as well. One of the kitties who has been sick was in the vet hospital for kidney issues. This has been a learning experience. Another is on stomitis. Interesting information on that as well. I have been working on a post giving specific information on sharing space with a cat. This has worked very well with the feral momma. She is allowing me to pet her some now. Sara is a very sweet girl and has come a long way in a relatively short period of time. Her kindness and grace humble me many times. And, the kittens are little energy rockets. They keep me laughing and on my toes.
I am sharing my happiness in celebration that I have finally “caught” the last female kitty on this property. Now, you need to understand she is a feral and it has taken me well over three years to “catch” her. This little girl is named Sara and she does know that as her name. I have called her that since I first laid eyes on her. Most times calling to her backside because this girl would bolt at just a thought of looking at her. She was trap savvy. Which is why I put “caught” and “catch” in parenthesis. She has had two litters a year and luckily would bring them to me once they were old enough to follow her here for food.
Setting the stage…I have a chicken coop that we bought at the grain store. It is perfect for three hens. It has an upstairs with brooding box and a downstairs living area. I have it set on thick wood so that nothing can dig in. Well, I gave my hens to a friend who is a natural born chicken lady. My hens are great producers and my friend sells eggs. So, I decided to put hay in the chicken coop for those kitties who were in need of shelter. Sara decided this year, it was perfect for her to use for her kittens. Which befuddles me because she would hide on other properties to have her kittens each time, each year. This year, for some reason, she came here. She went in there and I just happened to peak in and closed the exterior door. She had her kittens last Tuesday and all are safe, healthy.
I have started the process of acclimating her to me. She seems quite comfortable with me bringing in the food and water. Cleaning the kitty litter seems to be natural to the situation. I am respectful of her comfort zone. I am now in the process of “advance and retreat” training with her. The kittens get to hear me three times a day. I will sit and sing softly to momma and babies. “You are my Sunshine” is my standard tune because for some reason kitties like this song. Yes, all of them will go in to be spayed and neutered when time comes. And, the kittens will go for adoption. I will domesticate momma like many of the other ferals I have done. Most have already gone for adoption and that is my hope for Ms. Sara one day too. I don’t do “time expectations”. I take the time they need to get to a space of trust and acceptance. Love comes from there. I have Sara’s momma. It took over three years to catch her too. And, she is now my little love bug.
Sharing space with any kitty that is brought home, whether feral or domestic born, is important. Just sitting and reading to them. Or, singing to them without expecting them to come to you, is so key in gaining trust. It can move mountains in a shorter period of time. Below, you will see a photo of me and Hailey. The feral momma of Sara. I shared space with her with advance and retreat in the beginning. She went from scared feral to love bug in a few short months.