Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Pitter Patter of Itty Bitty Kitty Feet

No I'm not pregnant.

Matthew and I have become parents though....

Sort of....

A little over 2 months ago a stray tabby cat showed up on the front porch of our apartments and kind of adopted Matthew and me.

She didn't come up to any other people that lived in our buildings, but when either of us walked outside she was fast to twine herself in and out of our legs and express her desire to be fed.

Express may be too mild of a word for what she did.. this was one bossy cat. She basically yelled at us - as if saying Feed Me Now Human! Which of course we did.

After a couple of weeks petting her on our way in and out of the apartment we started to notice a rather large gathering of cats around the apartment. It only took one flick of our little stray's tail to realize she was in heat.

Now Matthew has never owned a cat and has, much like me, never been much of a cat person. We had cats growing up, and I'd been coerced into adopting 2 kittens from a lady I went to church with when I lived in Michigan that I brought with me when I moved south. But when constant sweeping and thwarted potty training attempts resulted in the boys being more of a pain than a pleasure, I eventually rehomed them. They went together to the same new home and from the pictures their new mommy sent me are living it up in a spoiled life of kitty luxury.

Pesca & Blanco as kittens, and all grown up.
They were inseparable!
In their new home - living in the lap of luxury!

I had no interest what-so-ever in getting another cat, but something about this stray called to us and we finally decided to rescue her from the masses of horny tom cats and bring her inside. We'd seen her run from every male cat that got near her for an entire week and felt relatively confident she'd escaped unmolested.

We were wrong.

About 5 weeks after bringing her in I started to notice she was getting a little thick around the middle and her tummy was beginning to feel firm. Matthew brushed it off as her just growing from finally having a steady diet, but after her little ninnies started turning pink even he had to concede we'd soon become parents, er um grandparents? whatever, we'd be having some kittens soon.

I hopped on line and researched how long the gestation period was for cats and from our closest calculation we figured she'd be due about the 1st or 2nd week of August.

The exact same time we were scheduled to go out of town on vacation - oy!

Thankfully we came home to a still pregnant cat and no kittens. Then this morning I woke up to Scathach snuggled up under my arm in bed, which she never does. I didn't think anything of it until I felt her stomach start making funny movements. Let me tell you, I snapped awake in 2.4 seconds. She may have grown on me, but not to the point where I was ok with her giving birth on my comforter!!

We'd spread out a blanket on the floor in the corner of the living room between the ends of the couch and love seat in preparation and I jumped up, grabbed her and ran to the living room to lay her on it. I read that animals will seek an enclosed place to give birth because it feels protected and the space between the ends of both of our couches makes a perfect little square cave.

Delivering the first kitten was rough. She screamed and meowed and hissed, while flipping and flopping all over the blanket trying to find a comfortable position. I felt so bad for her! Women talk about how painful giving birth to one baby is.. imagine spitting out 4.. in less than half an hour!!

We ended up with 4 kittens total and Matthew made it home from work to assist with and watch the last 2 kittens being born. We got them all cleaned up and settled in a box padded with a sheet and towel so they stay safe and warm. Scathach has been feeding them pretty much non-stop since she finished with the delivery.

So now we're parents to a momma cat and 4 kittens until they're about 8 weeks old and can be taken to the Mobile ASPCA to be adopted out. All of Alabama's shelters are guarantee no-kill shelters so we feel safe that they'll all find new homes. I took a couple of really gross - just being born - pictures but I'll spare you the gore and just share the cute fluffy adorableness that they are now!

4 People who coughed on a furball:

Anonymous said...

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hammy said...

Ernest Hemingway had said "One cat just leads to another"

Cats have always fascinated me. I'm not sure I'll own one for myself ever, cos I really am not responsible enough for pets... But they're a species with attitude. Sometimes good, sometimes bad.

But kittens are cute, almost all the time... :D

My personal fave quote about kittens is from Odgen Nash...
"The trouble with a kitten is that;
Eventually, it becomes a cat"

irishis98 said...

Loved your post, I bet your a great Cat Mom. Love reading you on Twitter too.

Clever Elsie said...

Awww! Congratulations! She found you guys at just the right time! I bet she'll make a cat lover out of you yet. ;)