It’s been more than a week since the “Hell on Wheels” gang arrived. And what a week.
After a slow start the first day, with a long nap after their travels, the seven newcomers got quickly up to speed, racing and playing with abandon. They were a little wary of me, at first, but not anymore. I suspect they weren’t handled all that much. A lot of people worry about the queen rejecting her kittens if they’re handled. And the rescuer mentioned that she felt Gabby didn’t like her touching them. My interpretation is that Gabby wants the limelight to herself; nothing to do with worry about the kittens. 😉
Although Gabby is clearly on her way to being done with motherhood, she was wonderfully patient with little Hamish. He was (and still is) very needy and she was quite willing to let him nurse whenever he wanted — mostly. In fairness, every time she lay down he’d come running. I do think that more often than not it was the comfort he wanted. I suspect she’ll get firm with him at some point or he’ll happily nurse until he weighs 15 pounds! I’m not going to interfere as long as she’s ok with it — the little guy deserves it, for now.
The kittens have completely integrated him and he plays and sleeps as one of them. More than he did with the “Braves” — but then he’s feeling better, too.
The newcomers are still a bit of a jumble to me. I still have to consult my “i.d. chart” occasionally! But some things are becoming apparent. Cullen appears to be a momma’s boy. 😉
The girls, especially Lily, Lou, and Eva are very vocal.
Lou is quite adventurous; she’s started to try and get out of the room already.
Nell has gone from being skittish (and attacking my feet) to being the snuggliest (other than Hamish) and demanding to be picked up and cuddled every time I go in the room. And she’s a climber!
Someone keeps peeing under the desk — just when I managed to get Hamish to stop. Argh.
I was told Mickey was the “runt” but it’s actually Eva — by a lot. If the numbers are correct (and they could be wrong, of course) she was even smaller than Hamish! Gains come in fits and starts so that could change at any time. For example, one days Hamish’s weight gain was only 8 grams. The next it was 34 grams!!
Hamish needed another trip to the vet (ear mites; dude!), which meant another day at work, so Lily and Eva came along to keep him company. They — especially Eva — were not impressed with the trip. Apparently it’s “old hat” to Hamish; he was sitting up looking out from the carrier while the girls tried to be invisible. At work, though, everything was fine. Everybody played, wrestled, slept, and ate just fine.
Cullen, despite being the biggest and being a mostly orange tabby, is NOT the bravest. Of course, he wasn’t at his best when he was being “tested”. Poor Cullen had to make a trip to the vet. I got home the other night and he was plaintively crying and holding up one paw. I consulted with my foster coordinator and we decided to observe for a bit. It could have been so many things, the unlikeliest being a break; kittens bend and bounce pretty well! The next morning he was still refusing to put weight on it. So I packed him up and off we went. He was terrified! When we got to the vet he was so scared he was doing that cat thing of “Hurt? I no hurt! What r u talking ’bout?” He refused to walk though and fortunately, his tentative movements showed Nicole that he was favouring the leg. They kept him for the day to observe and didn’t think it was serious. It was odd though; he’d use it to play and wrestle but just wouldn’t put weight on it. So far it seems to be fine now.
Yesterday I got home (after taking three of the kittens to work, again) and was met at the door by FIVE kittens and Gabby. A group that should be locked in the den! Gabby had pushed the door open. A door blocked by a 14 lbs bag of litter and the vacuum — sideways, so the wheels shouldn’t move. Last night I dug out a strap & buckle, put it around the handles, and that seems to have worked overnight. We’ll see.