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There is always something going on in a multi-cat household. Erm 9... cats and counting...... Plus stories from the Sheffield Cats Shelter

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Kitten Capers

It became clear, quite quickly, that limiting my little foster family to the cage when unattended wasn't right.  When they're not snoozing, the kittens love galloping around, so we needed to make some changes to our 'kitten room'.

We moved a few things around and the family PC and desk went into my sons room.  The remainder of the room was kitten proofed, no wires, gaps filled with towels, hardboard to protect some of my more important books and another piece across inside the door so we don't have to play 'catch the kitten' when opening the door.

Making the most of the space

For a time it worked much better, giving the little family as much space as possible.  Wendy was  jumping on the windowsill to get time to herself and the kittens had fun rushing around chasing toys.

It wasn't long before we found kittens were climbing, like little monkeys, up to the top of the cage.  The trouble is they are not so good at getting down. My solution was to put hardboard panels on the top that would overhang the sides of the cage. I can't stop them climbing, but at least now they can't get right to the top.
'anti climbing' boards!
Now we are faced with another problem. Wendy is growing tired of being confined. Whilst the board across the inside of the door stops kittens, its no match for a determined cat. As soon as the door was opened she jumped over and we had to be on our guard.

This then progressed to jumping into the small gap between the board and the door and pushing the door open! Thank goodness we were in the first time this happened. Without the board she wouldn't be able to lever her weight against the door to open it, but take it away and we could potentially be chasing 4 little monkeys.  At the moment, we are working with an additional, higher board and putting a weighty bag of cat litter behind the door. Plans are afoot to work out some form of airlock system. I knew all those bits of wood we never throw away would come in handy!

The kittens now find alternative places to sleep, sometimes in a bundle and other times scattered around in various places. My favourite was when they were all curled around the bottom of the scratch post.

Wendy's stomach problems have settled thanks to the sensitive food.  I'm now in the process of re-introducing normal food. It seems to be going ok, sometimes poo is less solid than normal but nothing as bad as before and no blood.

William continues to eat well. He needs no encouragement to tuck in. He is the one straight on your feet when you get in the room, unless he's asleep of course!

William play fights with my hand

Willow was eating, then she lost interest and we had to start encouraging her.  At one point she would only eat off your hand. Bizarre! Thankfully she is starting to eat from her bowl again.

Willow likes her box

Whisper had been giving some cause for concern, she was active enough, but hadn't been interested in eating solids.  I was also not sure she was getting enough fluids.  She is definitely the smallest of the 3. Earlier in the week I started using a syringe to get a small quantity of watered down kitten food into her.  It seemed to work, and as the days have gone on she's now eating from her bowl without any encouragement, which is great.

Whisper in the middle of washing herself

I stocked up on supplies for my own 'tribe' today.  I walk around a pet shop like a new mum does at Mothercare.  No surprise then that my foster family have a few additional things to play with.  They seem to approve :)
Willow assesses the new toy

William likes his mouse

Everyone joins in the game

Willow has a turn

Whisper concentrating
Their baby blue eyes are now starting to change colour.  At the moment they look like they are all going a greenish colour, it'll be interesting to see how they turn out.

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