My Sky Color

A forty something Dad, Husband, Engineer guy living in Western Oregon. Reflections on all things in life. A few technical things and whatever else comes along.

Friday, July 02, 2010

The Feline Saga

As part of the farm menagerie we have some barn cats. We put food in a bowl for them, we catch fleeting glances of them and that is about the level of affection we have with them. They do serve a purpose that offsets the food cost. We have no mice.

The problem with cats is they multiply at about 50% of the full "breeding like rabbits" rate. So a couple months ago I went to feed the animals and there in plain sight is a momma cat with a squirming mass of new born kittens. Junior started trying to spend time with them daily so the offspring wouldn't be as wild as the parents and he could find homes for them. After about a week of this the wild mother got nervous and moved the kittens. We could not find them...

On a Friday, about a week later, the boys found the cat family on a high shelf back in the barn. Their mother had the kittens in a new home in an old bird cage stored in the barn. Give or take a couple days I chased a raccoon away from the barn one evening. So on Saturday we were working out in the pasture near the barn and the kittens were making all kinds of racket. The boys checked on them and the mother was no where to be found. We gave them a day and still no mother and the little things were starting to get weak. We think the raccoon got them mom.

So we hauled them in the house, tried to get them warm and to drink some milk from a saucer. They were plenty hungry but didn't know how to lap up the milk. We dug around and found a syringe (without a needle) to try to squirt some milk in their mouths. The neighbor had a little bottle and some kitty formula so we tried that. It worked and they were a crazy crate of kittens after a couple feedings. The kits were feeling so good that a cardboard box wouldn't contain them. So they went back in the bird cage in the house.

So every two hours on Sunday the little things were fed. The problem was, what are we going to do with them come Monday when everyone goes back to school and work? No feeding every two hours...

In the past we have taken care of these sort of things in an "out on the farm" way. Due to the close care of these guys we couldn't just take care of the problem. So off to the "humane" society with them.

The experts said they were sick and too weak and they all need to be euthanized. That was a little rough on the troops. Especially after little C had been lining up homes for them with his friends at school.

Dang cats-



At 11:14 AM, Anonymous the mom person said...

This is too sad. Maybe that's one of the reasons we don't have a cat.

At 9:12 AM, Anonymous Julie said...

Sounds like a lot of hogwash from the "Humane" Society. Years ago, when our kids were about the age of yours, we knew there was a wild cat on the property with kittens. Fella had sniffed them out a couple of times. Well, then one day the mom was squished on the highway. Eric and Fella looked everywhere, but couldn't find the kittens. A couple of days later, they were mewing and Eric found 3 in the interior, backseat panel of a Mustang. We got them out and started with the bottle routine, which the kids loved. A day later I was walking over by the Mustang and heard the littlest mew. There was another kitten which was ice cold and non-responsive. Well, I wrapped it with a towel onto a hot water bottle, and when it got warmed up it was able to take a little milk, and well, the rest is history. We even went on a little trip with them, that we had had planned. Just took them with us to keep feeding them. We got them their shots, and then we kept one and found homes for the other 3.


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