New (Kitty) Family Under House! - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-13-2005, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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New (Kitty) Family Under House!

Some of you may recall my posts about the local tomcat who hangs around our house. Well, in the past month or so, my neighbours and I have noticed a female cat hanging around too. Then this morning, I went around to the back of the house to water my garden. I heard a squirrel barking, so I looked up in the three and asked the little guy, "What are you barking at?" I heard the crunch of leaves to my right, so I turned around expecting to see "Shiela" (as I've nicknamed her, inspired by Aussie slang). She was there, alright, and so where 5 teeny faces staring back at me.

We have a family living under our home. There is one grey and white tabby, one caramel and chocolate swirl, and three black and white tabbies (one which looks VERY similar to Binx). Shiela let me get within about 7 feet of her pride, and that was far enough (as she indicated to me with a soft hiss). So, I sat there for about 15 minutes just watching the little buggars crawl over her, play with each other, and explore the little 2-foot area right outside their entrance to under the house.

I don't know much about new kittens (both my boys were a few months old when we found them), but I'd guess that they were just a few weeks old. They are so small and adorable. I've never seen kittens that small in real life before!

They all (including Shiela) look like they are well-nourished and healthy (outwardly, anyhow).

I left them alone when they started having their lunch (mamma rolled over and they all crowded beside her to feed). She wasn't bothered much that I was there.

Unfortunately, it sounds like they would all just be euthanized if we called animal control. And families in this small town are already overflowing with pet cats that it would be next to impossible to find someone to take them in. From what the other neighbours say, there are certain strays that are just residents of this area. I think one of the ladies feeds some of them.

As a cat lover and responible cat parent, I'm torn b/t calling animal control and hoping that they find good homes, and just letting them be in their little family. Esp. knowing that they'd most likely be put down anyway, perhaps it's best to just let them be? I don't know. It's breaking my heart. They are so adorable!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-14-2005, 04:24 AM
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Unfortunately, it sounds like they would all just be euthanized if we called animal control. And families in this small town are already overflowing with pet cats that it would be next to impossible to find someone to take them in. From what the other neighbours say, there are certain strays that are just residents of this area. I think one of the ladies feeds some of them.
I know the current practise in the US is not to euthanize feral cats but to make sure they are nuetered and then feed the colonies. I dont know what your weather is like there but maybe that is an option. But I think it is imperative for you to make sure she doesnt produce anymore kittens. Arent there any rescues groups in your city? Fingers crossed for a happy ending for shiela and babies.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-14-2005, 05:13 AM
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I don't think you could just leave them be completely. If there are a lot of strays in your area, the last thing it needs is more. Mum, at least, needs to be neutered. And without intervention, all the kittens would end up reproducing themselves. Are there no charities that would neuter and release all the strays in the area?
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-14-2005, 10:57 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by emma_pen
Are there no charities that would neuter and release all the strays in the area?
I'm not sure...could be! Oh, that would make me feel much better. I'll do some checking around and update you all as soon as I know anything.

Thanks!
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-14-2005, 11:09 AM Thread Starter
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From what I could find, it sounds like the practice here is: an individual takes the cats to a local shelter and then the groups that have them spayed/neutered pick the animal up from the shelter and to wherever the procedure is going to be.

I really want to help these cats (esp. since Jim and I will be moving in about a month!). I feel like I need to be doing more, but I don't want to feed them b/c they may become dependant on that...and then what happens when we move? I don't want to call the shelter as I've already said. We have ONE shelter in our area, which is where we adopted our little Binx from. He was a "last chance" kitten and the conditions there are horrible.

Can any of you suggest nation-wide organizations that might be able to point me in the right direction as far as what I can do to help them? I don't want to take Shiela to the shelter b/c WHO KNOWS if those "groups" will bring her back.

And her kittens are so small and still nursing. I can't take their mom away now. I'm sure you can see why I feel it's best to just let them alone for now.

How soon after giving birth will the mom be ready for mating again?
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-14-2005, 01:04 PM
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My foster kitty, Isis, was back in season when her kittens were 2 weeks old, so it can happen pretty early. I hope you work something out!
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