Tuesday, April 03, 2012

8 More Fixed, Bottle Babes Found

I finally got it together to return the 15 rural Linn Colony cats fixed Friday, on Saturday. I'd already returned the other four cats--the Lebanon black manx male, the Side by Side colony Albany male and the Albany male and female.

I'd done two loads of dirty towel laundry too and given food and water to the 16 cats who overnighted after surgery in my garage (that included the Albany Side by Side colony male).

Time to get off my duff and return the 15. Off I went with them loaded, haphazardly, not organized and neat due to my exhaustion, in my car.

When I get there, I already know they've caught another big black male in one of the two traps I've left there. I already know they have not caught the uncaught teen. I ask the woman if she thinks I can net the teen. She said "Let's try. He's on the woodpile behind the tarp." She goes to one end and I the other. He's looking at both of us, worried now, not sure which way to go. Then, he suddenly decides to bolt off the side, but my net is already over him, in a flash. The caretaker is ecstatic. I get him into the end of the net, and clamp the netting tightly closed beyond the hoop with my hand, not entirely sure there are no holes in my old rotting trusty homemade net.

I carry him in the net into the garage and we easily transfer him into my crooked trap, the trap I backed into in my garage. I was going to make art work of it, then decided to fix it so it works. So I did. It's unique and cool and I still catch cats in it.

So I have the two remaining colony cats contained and am about to release the fixed 15, when up comes the neighbor, who leases the barn behind the caretakers house. He's got kittens from the barn. Three tiny bottle babes, eyes barely open--two white boys and a torti girl. They are cold and screaming.

Who is lactating, I wonder, of the females in my car. I take a good guess, the gray tabby female first to trap and who ate everything I'd give her, before surgery and after. I take her into the garage and with a mirror, check her belly for any sign of lactation. I see small milk bags, not much milk but there's lactation. I release everybody else, load the teen and the big black male up, and the tabby mom and the kittens and the empty dirty cages and carriers, and come home.

I don't like having bottle babes here. A feral mom needs a quiet place to want to nurse and care for them. I rigged the rabbit hutch finally after feeding the kittens myself--KMR I'd just bought for outlandish cost at Petco. Their little bellies were distended. They were at the age, despite being two weeks old or so, they still need stimulation to poop and pee and they hadn't had that. They must have peed out a cup between the three, once stimulated!

I got them warm also.

Then I put them in with the mom. At first, she would have nothing to do with them. I was panicked so tired out already and now these kittens! OMG, I thought. I can't do this. But the mom finally became the mom, and took to feeding them. She's not a great mom, won't clean them, doesn't feel well herself. She ate too much in the time she was in the trap before surgery. She was one of the first to trap Wednesday night and this was Saturday. She acted like she was not that happy to be back to being mom. She has diarrhea from her over eating, too. I have to remove the kittens and bathe them at least twice a day.
The rural Linn mom with kittens, found in the barn by a neighbor.

I'd also been contacted by a Junction City couple who claimed to have 15 cats a neighbor left behind needing fixed including some pregnant ones. To solve my issues with the two cats in traps, I asked S/nipped if they by chance had any Sunday appointments. When they said I could bring cats Sunday, I asked how many max and was told six. I called the Junction City people and told them to meet me at 5:15 a.m. Sunday at the Mcdonalds with four cats, preferably females.

So off I went to S/nipped the next morning, with the two rural Linn boys, and three girls from Junction City. They only showed up with three.
Sinbad, big black male from the rural Linn colony fixed at S/nipped this last Sunday.
Nippy, the silver tabby tux male teen I netted Saturday at the rural Linn colony and who was fixed Sunday at S/nipped.

On the way back, I met them again, only this time, at the house of a JC cat trapper, who works at the WAG clinic in Eugene. I figured they could hook up and find a way to get the rest fixed somehow. I didn't get photos of their three girls. They were two muted tortis and a tabby on white female. For records, I named them Melissa, Janey and Ruthy.

Then it was home again. I also had to meet the Lebanon man, who had two more boys caught for a pre arranged Monday appointment at Heartland for them.
Furbee and Tom E. Cat, from the Lebanon big boys colony, fixed Monday at Heartland. Frubee was a crypt orchid.

I picked up an Albany girl Monday morning also and all three of those cats were fixed at Heartland.
Priscilla, fixed Monday at Heartland. These folks found her as a bottle babe and requested help from me then on caring for her. I can't believe she is so beautiful now. But she is!

Heartland said they have a worker who will foster the bottle babes, if they're old enough (I believe the person works full time). I agreed to it, but now have misgivings since I don't think the kittens are quite old enough to be left alone all day without feeding. I think they're still too young for that.

19 cats fixed Friday. Five fixed Sunday. Three fixed Monday. Very good four days for local cats. The rural Linn Colony is completed. The Lebanon Big Boys colony still has the female, with kittens out in the woods, and one big boy left needing fixed. Ten boys fixed from there so far. The Albany Side by Side colony is now fixed.

I am still recuperating from a wild exhausting but meaningful weekend.

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