All 5 siblings right before their feeding.
The biggest of the litter
Such sweet small angels
In a noisy room, a frightened little heartbeat pounds as bright lights and strange smells surround her in the cage she is locked in. Such a small cat, way too young to be trying to give life to more little souls, who upon entry into this strange world will not even know their fate. After giving birth to five extremely small kittens and losing two, mommy cat (Daffodil) cannot produce milk and her kittens that she struggled to bring into this world safely are taken away from her and placed with a foster parent. That foster parent is me, Audrey Lohrey; I just took on five newborn, premature, beautifully perfect kittens.
Trying to raise kittens is not an easy task, and having little ones that are so new to life proves to be an even harder task. The first day and night there are hourly check-ins and feedings that are necessary. Since these little ones didn’t get their mother’s colostrum (milk produced first by the mother cat, giving the babies extra antibodies which help to protect from disease), it was extremely important to make sure the babies were eating well. They were fed with eye droppers for the first day and a half, and I got them to latch onto a bottle when I started fostering them on day two. Teaching a virtually deaf (ears are closed off until the kitten reaches 5-8 days) and blind (eyes will begin to open between 8-14 days) kitten can be a frustrating responsibility, but it is one that I love to have.
Since there is no mother cat to stimulate the kittens’ need to use the bathroom, I have fallen into place as the butt wiper as well. Before feedings, I get a wet rag and wipe their little tiny butts till they are clean and dry. This is a rather nasty part of being a foster mommy, but only another foster parent can understand the happiness it brings to know that our little one’s tummies are working well. No amount of poo from these little ones will ever make me unhappy; if they are pooping they are eating!
I will continue this process of feedings and potty time for another eight weeks until they are litter trained and weaned off the bottle. This process of raising five kittens that have fought hard every day to just survive is, unfortunately, not the toughest hurdle they will have to overcome. Finding a forever home for these five little souls will be a whole other journey in itself. Spring brings many things, but one of those things is a not so happy one — cats that have not been responsibly spayed are getting bred and bringing babies into this world that may never find a home, or live their lives in a cage never knowing the love of an owner. So this time of the year it can be especially hard to find potential adopters for these sweet souls.
This is why it is extremely important to make sure your kitty is fixed! There are local clinics that offer reduced rates for spaying and neutering. Also, your local Humane Society is willing to work with you to help get your pet spayed. I love getting to share a little bit of my love with five precious souls, but I would also love it if there wasn’t a need for fosters. That every furbaby had his person, and no soul was lost. But until this goal is reached I will continue to give all I can to help nurture and protect these little ones.
Please consider donating to your local Humane Society — they are always in need of help. To find out what you can do to help, contact your local shelter and ask about volunteering. I have fostered over 13 litters of kittens and have always found loving homes for them all. Open your heart to a foster animal and you may just fall in love. If you are interested in adopting any of the little kittens I have please contact me through my facebook page:
We love our pets, they deserve the best.
Do you have what it takes to be a kitten, (or puppy), foster mom?