Monday, September 21, 2015

The Three Little Kittens

Ember, Shadow, and Moondust were some of the tiniest kittens we've ever seen ... and now, approaching their two-month birthday, they're still pretty tiny.

Left to right: Shadow, Ember, and Moondust

They are still not so sure about solid food, though they're happy to lap up KMR (kitten milk replacement formula) and have started sampling a mixture of that and wet food. They're learning to use the litter box, but they still have accidents sometimes, like any toddlers. In short, they look and act more like 5-week-old kittens than almost 8-week-olds.

But Mama Emily, herself, is a tiny cat, and probably not more than seven months old. She was living in an abandoned house when she was rescued, so she probably didn't get the greatest nutrition during most of her pregnancy. We think the kittens were premature--so, like all preemies, they may not hit the developmental marks on the same timetable as others their age.

A box of Moondust!

 But the good news is, they're healthy, active, and playful as all get-out. It may take them a little longer to start looking and behaving like big cats, but what's wrong with that? We get to enjoy their kittenhood a little bit longer--and it's hard to find anything cuter than little kittens.

A catnap for Ember

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

She Likes It! Hey, Moondust!

Ember (on scratcher ramp), Moondust (in scratcher ramp), and Shadow (on track). 

Okay, a kitten taking her first taste of non-Mom food may not seem like a huge deal, but since we've been worrying for weeks about the kittens not wanting to eat, it's a pretty big deal around here.

The kittens are six weeks old, and still not weaned. Most other litters we've fostered have shown interest in food by around four weeks.

"What's this stuff?"

Of course, all kittens develop at different rates, and our current crew--Shadow, Ember, and Moondust--were smaller than usual at birth, with a very young mama cat. We even think they might have been slightly premature. One kitten in the litter, little Dusk, only lived one day.

But they are growing well, and they are beyond any doubt active, playful, and healthy. Still, we couldn't help worrying: were these kittens ever going to eat?

"She likes it! Hey, Moondust!" 

Today, Moondust, the smallest of the three, took the plunge. She came out from her new favorite hidey-hole in the scratching ramp to investigate a dish of KMR (Kitten Milk Replacement)--and she decided it was worth a taste. Once she got started, she licked up nearly the whole dish!

We're hoping her litter-mates follow suit. And we're pretty sure Mama hopes so, too!

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Official Kitties!

Cute little tortie Ember
Great news! Miri's House Cat & Kitten Rescue, Inc., is now an official nonprofit corporation in Massachusetts. Thanks to everyone who supported our GoFundMe drive so we could file for nonprofit status, and a special shout-out of thanks to Lori Bradley of iAnimal Southcoast Pet Rescue, Inc., whose work for animal welfare is a huge inspiration.

We've been really fortunate this year to receive donations of kitten food, a cat carrier, and several scratching posts and toys. High on our wish list: some cat trees to create more vertical space for both our fosters and our resident cats and a screened porch to give the kitties a chance to get some fresh air in a safe enclosure. We're hoping that someone will offer to donate materials and labor to help us build one.

Sweet tortie Shadow
In the meantime, our current crop of kittens are growing up and will soon be ready for their first set of shots. They will be meeting some potential adopters this weekend, and should be ready to go to their new homes after their second set of shots in October. Mama will need to be spayed, and we hope that we can find her a great home as well. She has done a wonderful job raising her girls.

It's amazing how quickly these little kittens grow up--and how cute they are in the process!

Kitty photobomb: white calico Moondust with a guest appearance by Ember!