Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Kittens in the house

The inn is full. We've had more overall cat numbers in the past than I do now, but unfortunately we have a lot of cats and young ones who must be kept separate from others for reasons of health and happiness, so let's hope no one dumps another cat at the door. There would be no place to put him!

It's time for new photos. The four remaining "kittens" are now young adults and need to be marketed as such for the holidays. We have some lovely adults. We have Timmick the One-eyed Terror, and Spot the Declawed Cat who Bites. We have one feral female recovering from spay who will be leaving for her home territory soon. All of these I need to get photos of to share here with you, dear blog readers.

We do have four small kittens, however they aren't adoptable yet. Tank and Tink are two of the Lumberyard kittens who have failed to thrive, and it's time for a full vet workup on them. They eat, but don't romp and play like other kittens. They are needy, skinny, and whiney. They start to fill out, then get thin again. Their littermates were big robust boys, and have been adopted, but of course kittens from the same litter can have different fathers.

The littlest one, Tink, can't meow clearly. They tend to want to suck on one another, so I'm going to start putting one in a cage with a heater and another bed on the outside, so they can be close together but not suck.

The other two small kittens are feral. Imagine that! I FINALLY got some feral kittens after a summer full of friendly ones! They were neutered today, and are warming up nicely with a little help from canned food.

Branden and Nikki, our caretakers when I travel, had a cat show up at their door. She went off to be spayed today but...she already was! So she was vaccinated and treated for ear mites, and then came back here. I've posted her on the lost pet Facebook pages. If we don't find the owner, Branden and Nikki think they would like to keep her, so she is fostering with them, thank goodness!

Spot is a declawed cat who was found in Owego, and I need to head out to where he was found and put up posters. He was a sweetheart in the cage, and I was sure (and still hope I am) that someone had to be looking for him.

I felt badly for him in the downstairs of the barn, but because he could be someone's pet, I didn't want to put him upstairs with the other cats, so I brought him into the house in my guest room. Then I discovered Spot's vice--not an uncommon one for a declawed cat, and easily one that could have gotten him tossed out the door. He bites. As in, rolls around purring by your head and then sinks his teeth into your scalp, bites. This is the reason we don't permit declawing. Declawed cats often compensate for the lack of claws by using their remaining "weapon"--a less tolerated one--their teeth.

He is very treat motivated so I'm going to try some clicker training on him. But here was another cat I expected that, if his owner couldn't be found, he could be adopted right away. Now he needs a special home. He does love playing with another cat I have in the facility, a beautiful Russian blue type. So I may bring that cat into the house as well, and see if they would get along in the two guest rooms upstairs. Pepper and Timea would have the other half of the upstairs. The Russian Blue will get a home quickly (no vices so far!) but in the short term, Spot would have a friend. He tends to bite more when he is bored and finally a human comes to play with him, so perhaps with another cat to wear him out, he would be less likely to use his teeth. The Blue is a big former tom cat, but very playful himself, and about the same age.

Hopefully we'll have a sunny day soon, so I can get improved photos of the clan!

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