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post #1 of 50 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 03:35 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Cairo, Egypt
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Hello there

Hello everyone! I just registered for this account and here I am introducing myself...

I don't actually have a cat yet, but there's a feral cat who gave birth on our door step (in an apartment building) a few weeks ago and my wife and I have been taking care of her and her 2 beautiful baby kittens ever since. My wife has resisted getting a cat for a while for various reasons, but now the baby kittens have gotten to her and we might take that step and adopt the whole family. The cat is very friendly and not afraid of people at all, and she's practically been living in our building for the last month or so. She gets up and starts purring whenever she sees me or my wife, and when we pet her she's always very happy about it and she starts rubbing her body against our clothes and acts all sweet and lovely.

Naturally I don't expect her transition to domestic life will be as smooth. I let her into the house and she sniffed around a bit but always had an eye on the door and always got back out after a short while. If I take her in I will have to take her and the kittens to the vet and get them all cleaned up, so I don't think I will be able to let her go outside again without risking her getting sick (of course I'm hoping she won't already have any diseases, but it won't change anything even if she did). All in all, I expect there will be some inevitable trauma with the transition, but hopefully she will overcome it quickly.

I don't have much past experience with cats. We used to have one when I was a little kid, and recently my younger brothers got one at the family home, but I have never been a cat's primary caretaker before. I thought I would create an account and hang out around here with fellow cat caretakers and get their valuable advice.

I wish you all well, and I'll see you around.
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post #2 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-02-2013, 08:09 PM Thread Starter
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Here are some photos of the family:





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post #3 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-03-2013, 11:02 AM
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What beautiful cats! Thank you for caring for them. And I bet they will transition indoors just fine.

Keep us updated!
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post #4 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-03-2013, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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Location: Cairo, Egypt
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Smile

Thanks! They really are beautiful, lovely, and quite playful

I will call the vet today and probably start the transition process tonight. I will post updates on our experience, hopefully that will help anyone else that comes along later on.

P.S.: Many thanks to the moderator for moving this post to the Feral Cats forum. I realized that my post might have been a little too long for a new member post, and I was planning on posting the updates to the Feral Cats forum. Thanks for helping with that
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post #5 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-03-2013, 11:26 AM
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They will transistion to the indoors just fine! Lots of people have strictly indoor cats - I have 5! Yes, most definitely get them all fixed as soon as practical. You live in Cairo, Egypt??!! Wow! Do you have a feral problem there? This momma is most likely a stray not truly feral. If she is this friendly she was someone's pet at some time. The kittenss are adorable and momma is very pretty.

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post #6 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-03-2013, 12:44 PM Thread Starter
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Well, we don't have an organized TNR society, and animal control isn't that active or effective around here. Many people volunteer to take care of them like we do, though, and some vets treat injured ferals and strays for free if you take them to their clinics. The conditions are less than ideal, of course, but we don't have a shortage of kind people who do whatever they can to help.

I don't know if she was someone's pet before or not, but she might have been since she's generally very skinny and doesn't seem like she was doing very well on her own. Maybe someone else was taking care of her in their garden or on their door step like we currently are.
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post #7 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-04-2013, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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Question Progress update

Here's an update on our progress with this beautiful family of cats:

We finally got them all inside the apartment this morning and closed the door. The mommy is still a bit uneasy as she keeps sniffing at the door every now and then, but generally they seem to be adjusting fine. The babies seem to like it here and they have warmed up to us quite a bit. The black and white one is a very brave and naughty boy, and the other one is a girl and is still a little shy but she's starting to get some courage to explore and play around freely.

Right now we have them contained in the vicinity of the apartment door, with the guest bathroom and some room to move about. We made a makeshift baby gate with two low cardboard boxes, just so the babies wouldn't run around in the apartment while they're still so small. The mommy can hop over it easily and has done so and explored a bit before hopping back inside. I put a litter box for the mommy in the guest bathroom and got her some of the sand from a construction site across the street, where she used to do her business before. Hopefully she would start using the litter box soon, and after a day or two I will start gradually swapping out the sand with the clean odorless stuff.

I would love to get comments about how well I'm doing so far, and anything I might be doing wrong or that could be done better. I also have a few questions that I would appreciate any help with:

* Do I need to make a separate litter box for the babies? And how do I train them to use it since they've never been to the street before? (I don't even know where they've been doing it so far since I haven't seen any of their droppings when they were outside. The porter may have been cleaning up after them, though, so I'm not really sure.)
* Do I make a separate litter box for each one, or just one for the two of them?
* The boy is starting to eat some of his mother's food. Yesterday and today he just pulled some of the food from her plate and devoured it. Should we start making food for him? And what about his sister? Do we try to feed her or let her come to it herself? Also, what kind of food is best for them? Same stuff the mommy eats or something special? I think they're about 5 weeks old by now.

Finally, I need to take them to the vet on Saturday to get them all checked up and vaccinated, etc... Any tips for doing this without traumatizing the mommy? The kids I guess will be fine, right now they're fascinated by every single thing so I think they might be more excited than scared. I just don't know how I can transport her in the car all the way to the vet with as little trauma as possible. All tips are welcome!

Thanks, and sorry for the long post
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post #8 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-04-2013, 03:31 PM
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What a lovely story! If she is anything like my boy she may not be keen on a cat carrier, I'm no expert but watching animal planet all the time (tad too much) they almost always put mum in one carrier and babies in another but make sure they are next to each other and have a great view of each other (others will probably give a better idea for travel though!) there's lots of little recipes online for kitten food, almost always has baby food in and it's like a thick creamy meal for them, it certainly sounds like you're doing great and should be very proud


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post #9 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-05-2013, 02:46 PM
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I think you are doing really, really great!!! I'm not an "expert", but I think one litter box right now for all of them will be ok, as they get bigger you will probably need one more. I would also let the kittens come to the soft food on there own, at 5 weeks, I think it is ok for them to start eating this, can you get any canned kitten food? They are beautiful!!!
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post #10 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-05-2013, 03:51 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for your sweet words We're still trying to find our way together, but so far it's going well. Mommy seems to have found her way to the litter box; I woke up this morning to find she had used it at night. It took a few adjustments to get to that result, and we had to leave the bathroom door half-closed so she would feel it's private enough. The babies, however, were urinating in a corner near where they play, so when we found that out I dried it up with a tissue and put it near the litter box, then wiped the place very well with disinfectant to make sure they don't go there again. I think they're starting to find their way to the litter box too, but maybe they're still too little to understand the concept. Some people say their mommy will help with that once she herself starts using the litter box, so there's hoping.

The babies are still mostly on breast milk, but whenever we put food for the mommy they sniff at it and sometimes try a bite or two. I put some food on my fingers today and tried to give it to them, but they just sniffed at it and went on playing. By the way, the are the most adorable thing in the world when they're playing together! And when I walk in near them they just start climbing my pants legs But today I started teaching them not to do that anymore because they tried to climb my wife's leg and ended up scratching her skin

We will take them to the vet tomorrow, hopefully that trip would go smoothly and wouldn't be traumatic to anyone.

Thanks again everyone, and I hope everyone else is having as splendid time with their furry friends as we are
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