16 April, 2011 at 10:30 pm #44623
So glad to have found your site. Two nights ago a mostly wild mother cat and her now almost grown kitten (approx.10 months old) I call “Fuzzy” came to me for help. The momma cat was going to have babies, soon, but apparently needed a place to do soon. I set her up in a secluded, safe area of my closet and did by while she stoicly gave birth to 5 kitts. Her daughter wanted me to hold her when I finally got to bed and even got in next to me, just as fell asleep, I was woken up, feeling a warm wetness on my arm.I got the light on and discovered that Fuzzy had given birth right there in my arms. She did this twice more before I was able to get up and grab clean towels, from the bathroom. When I returned Fuzzy was gone and 2 of her babies were in my bed.I kept them warm and looked for their mom, finally finding her with 1 kitten in a drawer under stuff on the other side of my bed. She cried two times and gave birth twice more, giving birth also to 5 kittens. Both moms are doing well, eating and drinking and all 10 babies are doing well. The problem is that Fuzzy is not at all interested in nursing or caring for her litter. I managed to fix a box she likes for her and her kits, but she has been gone all day. She is so young and overwhelmed.I put one of her babies with the mama, hours ago and she’s happily nursing. I’m about to put another one who’s mewing alot with the mom. I could sure use some advice. If worse comes to worse, can I put all 5 of young Fuzzy’s kits with mama, without causing harm to anyone? If this isn’t going to work, I need do step-by-step instructions for feeding the newborns. How do I get them to nurse from a bottle? I’m trying to anticipate their needs, I do appreciate any and all available. I think Fuzzy was trying to run away from the pain of labor. I first got to know mama 18 months ago, when I began feeding a small group of 4-5 feral and mostly wild cats who appeared on my property. I was able to get only 2 neutered by obtaining vouchers, before being hospitalized. I’m more stable now and I want to get all of these kittys neutered when they’re old enough, and hopefully placed in good homes. I will be grateful for advice on these matters, obtaining multiple spay/neuter vouchers, finding homes for cats and kittens, and anything else I may needed to know.16 April, 2011 at 10:44 pm #656863
Wow Pam you sure have your hands full. One Cat cannot feed 10 kittens. I helped a cat of mine who had 12 kittens. I handfed whoever was acting hungry every 2 to 3 hours. We have many experienced members here who have raised orphan kittens. I’ll give you some info and good websites and other members will be here to help you also. Welcome to TDK!16 April, 2011 at 10:45 pm #65686416 April, 2011 at 10:45 pm #656865
Wow, talk about a complicated situation. Long post to follow . . .
Female cats, especially in wild populations, will often nurse each others babies, as a sort of day-care system. While the others go out to hunt, one mom will stay behind to look after the babies. Usually its 2-3 generations of moms and their daughters who team up like this.
Considering that fuzzy is still young and inexperienced, her mom would naturally take over for her, but fuzzy should and probably will be back within a day or two, from where she’ll learn the ropes from her mom.
Absolutely put fuzzy’s babies in with the others, right now, asap. They need to get what colostrum mom still has left for their immune systems. It would be good if you can leave them all in there with mom, she’ll take care of them. But 10 kittens is a h*** of a strain on one mommy and one little body. If you can, get some kmr and a kitten nursing bottle to help mom with feeds. The babies should still get milk from her, but you can top them up with kmr.
It would also be really good to mix up some of the kmr for mom to drink – she’ll need the extra calories. And then please feed mom the best quality food you can afford? I know a lot of breeders who are pinched for cash will feed their queens good quality super-market brand kitten food, like whiskas kitten crunchies & wet food.16 April, 2011 at 10:47 pm #656866
Will you be able to get KMR(kitten replacement milk)? Kittens cannot be fed cows milk. KMR is available at pet stores,walmart,etc. If you can’t get KMR there is a recipe for “kitten glop” which is good to feed them and not too difficult to make.16 April, 2011 at 10:49 pm #656867
Info about kitten glop.
Glad you’re here Skyron16 April, 2011 at 10:50 pm #656868
I learned most of what i know about hand-raising kittens from the messybeast site buttercup posted. It has step-by-step instructions for how to feed baby kittens. The only thing they dont have on there is that you have to burp the baby kittens just like human babies after each feed. Watch how mom steadily licks down their backs when they are done feeding – try to mimick that motion.16 April, 2011 at 10:57 pm #656869
i’ve never used kitten glop on my fosters, i’ve never had to, so i cant say how well it works. What i can say, is that my vet absolutely swears by goats milk for hand raising anything – dog, cat, squirrel, bat, whatever. If you can get hold of some, even canned, that would be good. I always buy the canisters of royal canin baby cat milk, that come with a bottle inside. Thing is, not one of my fosters have ever liked the nipples on those bottles, so i get the little ‘pet age’ ones that you get at any pet shop. I cant ever find goats milk, and as far as what we have available here in south africa, rc baby cat milk is the best.16 April, 2011 at 11:27 pm #656870
I don’t have any experience with young kittens, but I wanted to say welcome to TDK. I’m so thankful for folks like you who are out there on the “front lines” helping cats in need. Without folks like you we would not have our three “teenage” kittens who we love dearly. They were all rescues. But we didn’t do the actual rescuing…just provided a home when they were ready. Thanks for all you’re doing and good luck with the kittens. Some day they will bring lots of joy into homes like our rescue kitties have.17 April, 2011 at 2:39 am #656871
Welcome to TDK Pam, you do have a big job on your hands with all those kitties. I hope Fuzzy returns soon to help ease the load. I can’t add anything else helpful as Buttercup and Skyron have pretty much covered it all. Good luck with the rearing and I hope you can find someone to help.17 April, 2011 at 5:20 am #656872
Wow….I’m a little confused in your post…Fuzzy is the daughter of your older once stray cat? And now both had ten kittens in total? Or only Fuzzy had five kittens? Now Fuzzy doesn’t want to deal with them, and her mama is taking care of them?
Anyway, buttercup and skyron have given great sites to read and learn on. They were both there, along with Jcat when I came onto this site nearly 7 months ago looking for help for one of my cats, who was only a 3 week old kitten.
Anyway, try to keep the kittens warm since it looks like Fuzzy may not be helping them stay warm. And I hope you can find someone to help in case Fuzzy doesn’t nurse at all.17 April, 2011 at 5:22 pm #656873
I am thrilled and grateful for all of the advice, links, and warm support expressed by so many members, so quickly. I obviously came to the right place. Thank you Buttercup, Skyron, Moonshadow, EC Brown, Duchess-Gabriel, and every one for your kind help. I’ve been busy reading, preparing kitten glop, and mostly taking care of Fuzzy’s five. For clarification, here’s a recap: I Fuzzy’s moma’s name is “China”. She has a short black coat and beautiful green eyes, and gave birth to Fuzzy 10 1/2 months ago. She mysteriously showed up on my property with 4 other cats, and I started feeding them. China bonded quickly and is sweet and affectionate. Fuzzy iike her mom, is all black, but with long hair and gold eyes . From the day she was born, Fuzzy and I have shared a unique emotional bond. (more on this later). 3 evenings ago, both China and Fuzzy came to me for help, China mother and daughter gave birth that night, delivering 5 kittens each for a grand total of 10 babies. Fuzzy had 3 of her kits in my arms. I didn’t know she was pregnant, as she is still growing and has long hair. I think that Fuzzy is a bit young to be a mother, and is still traumatized from the birthing process. She is reluctant to nurse her babies,, curl up with them or care for them. She doesn’t react when they cry, and took off all day yesterday. I fortunately found your site and began rotating Fuzzy’s kits to China, one at a time to nurse.
Now, for an update17 April, 2011 at 6:03 pm #656874
Obviously China and Fuzzy knew where to come to have their babies safely Pam.17 April, 2011 at 6:37 pm #656875
I am thrilled and grateful for all of the advice, links, and warm support expressed by so many members, so quickly. I obviously came to the right place. Thank you Buttercup, Skyron, Moonshadow, EC Brown, Duchess-Gabriel, and every one for your kind help. I’ve been busy reading, preparing kitten glop, and mostly taking care of Fuzzy’s five. For clarification, here’s a recap: Fuzzy’s moma’s name is “China”. She has a short black coat and beautiful green eyes, and gave birth to Fuzzy 10 1/2 months ago. She mysteriously showed up on my property with 4 other cats, and I started feeding them. China bonded quickly and is sweet and affectionate. Fuzzy iike her mom, is all black, but with long hair and gold eyes . From the day she was born, Fuzzy and I have shared a unique emotional bond. (more on this later). 3 evenings ago, both China and Fuzzy came to me for help, China was obviously ready to deliver a new litter. Within hours of each other, mother and daughter gave birth that night, delivering 5 kittens each for a grand total of 10 babies. Fuzzy had 3 of her kits in my arms, (ever hear of such a thing?) I didn’t know she was pregnant, as she is still growing and has long hair. I think that Fuzzy is a bit young to be a mom, and is still traumatized from the birthing process. She is reluctant to nurse her babies,, curl up with them or care for them. She doesn’t react when they cry, and took off all day yesterday. I fortunately found your site and began rotating Fuzzy’s kits with their grandma China, one at a time,to nurse.
Now, for an update: There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Fuzzy finally returned last evening, seemingly a changed woman. She got in the nest with her babies and commenced nursing and grooming them. She likes when I sit down next to her, pet and gently talk to her. She is loving and purrs, and rolls over on her back, making it easier for me to examine her more thoroughly. I observed that the two teats furthest away from her head did not seem to be letting her milk down, were too firm, and none of the kits tried to nurse from them. I applied a warm compresses last night and this morning, and will watch for improvement. She stayed with her kittens all night. I’m hopeful that she’s coming around and is going to be able to nurture her babies after all. Kitten Glop is a hit with Fuzzy and China. I will continue to provide you with up dates.
I’m using my new 4G device, given to me by a good friend 2 months ago. I’ ve had little experience using a PC, or the internet,so I’m still experiencing an uphill learning curve, which for the most part, I enjoy and find amazing. Your site is my first blog, and has been totally positive and rewarding. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that you are based in NZ. I know very little about your country, but I feel strongly that the best lamb in the world comes from New Zealand. I plan to educate myself about your homeland, as I want to know more.
I will start learning how to use this devices camera and take pictures of China, Fuzzy, and the babies to share with you. The photos already posted on your site by everyone are really beautiful.17 April, 2011 at 6:51 pm #656876
This is my third reply post: I wasn’t sure if my reply post no.1 went through, and I was unable to find it, and so I wrote reply# 2, posted it, just minutes ago, and lo and behold there it is my initial reply. Told you I’m a beginner! Thanks for your indulgence.17 April, 2011 at 7:02 pm #656877
That is wonderful to hear Pam!!! One of my mom’s cats Hester [named after Hester Pyrnne in the Scarlet letter] was quite young when she had her first litter, she was probably around the same age as Fuzzy if not a little younger, we’re thinking she was only about 5-6 months old when she did get pregnant.
thank you for clearing up who had which babies, so China [older female] is nursing her babies fine, and now it seems Fluffy is nursing her babies too? That’s wonderful.
But back to Fuzzy she probably was just overwhelmed at first and now her maternal instinct is coming into play. When Hester came to us, she was stray and she was huge and pregnant looking for food and a place to stay. My mom trapped her and brought her back into the back bathroom and there she helped her give birth [just moving the kitten out of the way since Hester seemed to just pop them out one on top of the other.] And Hester at first was a little wary but became a very good mommmy to her four babies.
At least you kno17 April, 2011 at 7:58 pm #656878
Wow, what an amazing story! Mom and daughter, giving birth on the same day in the same place- possibly conceiving at the same time with the same dad?!? It’s like a Lifetime movie! My heart goes out to you and I hope this whole little family thrives! If there is nursing compeTITion (sorry) with Fuzzy and her 2 wonky nipples, maybe a vet can help if all the kittens are not seeming to get enough. This sounds like a great extended family, and China and Fuzzy must be so close to go through all this together! I love China for being such a strong mom, and Fuzzy for being a changed woman, as you say! Maybe she had to go and confront the dad and give him a piece of her mind.17 April, 2011 at 8:03 pm #656879
It is an amazing story…so glad Fuzzy came back (a changed woman at that.) Thanks for the update. We look forward to seeing photos when you get a chance.17 April, 2011 at 9:39 pm #656880
About your kitty and the milk not dopping in two of her teats – keep a very close eye on that. If it doesnt clear up in a day or so, please take her to a vet. I dont know what the proper english name is, but it translates roughly into ‘milk fever’ – where the milk that is stuck in the ducts goes off and gets infected and causes septecemia. Typical signs are lethargy, not wanting to eat, painfull teats and fever. It can be fatal, so please please please keep an eye on her. The warm compress is a good idea, you can also try to massage her teats, to get that milk moving and increase the blood supply to het teats. Like milking a cow, but more gentle, the goal is just to massage, not to milk the cat.17 April, 2011 at 9:40 pm #656881
Oh, and by the way – GO FUZZY GO!! You’re going to be an awesome mommy!!19 April, 2011 at 1:33 am #656882
Hello good people at TDK! Here’s today’s update on Fuzzy and China: That Fuzzy girl amazes me. She is really getting the hang of mothering, and enjoys it more and more. She continues to nurse her kitties, groom them and be attentive. She takes more breaks than does China, but far less mewing is heard from her babies, and she has stayed with them all night for two nights now. Her rear nipples have softened up (warm compresses & gentle massage), and the babies are beginning to use them. How quickly things change, which demonstrates how quickly things could spell disaster for a moma and her babies. I thank you all once again for helping me avert disaster, with compassionate and sound, good advice, expressed so quickly and clearly. China and Fuzzy are eating well. Fuzzy looks terrific, as though nothing has happened. China looks a little tired. Her coats natural sheen has not yet returned to its shinny glow and appears thinner. Don’t worry, I’ll keep on keeping a close eye on everybody. The vet is literally just around the corner. Out of necessity, I don’t go running there with my animals for every little thing, but they know me and mine. Please, don’t any of you hesitate to tell me if I should take someone there to be properly examined.If they need to go see the vet, they are going. I’ll just have to do what ever it takes to afford it. I’ve never had an experience like this before. It is indeed like watching a movie, one that has truly enriched me. I’m getting ready to snap some photos, very soon. I’ll keep you posted. With loving gratitude, Pam19 April, 2011 at 4:57 am #656883
Good news that the mamas and babies are all doing well. I hope the vet will give you a discount on getting them all neutered and spayed when they are old enough. The two mama cats can probably be fixed in a month or two.19 April, 2011 at 4:03 pm #656884
Wow, having 3 kittens born in your arms is quite the shocker and yet, an absolutely wonderful experience. Those mama cats must really trust you. Bless you for helping the ladies in need.19 April, 2011 at 5:30 pm #656885
Aw, paw up as high five…kudos for being the meowmy of the new fur family!22 April, 2011 at 6:13 am #656886
Hello Friends! I thought you might like a China and Fuzzy + 10 babies progess report. Both mamas are doing very well. They are eating like horses, 3-4 times a day, with snacks available around the clock. China’s coat is looking better already. I’ve set up a mama cat cafeteria in my bedroom (for my own convenience), and they love it. While they have different approaches to mothering, based on how much both litters have grown, they are both doing a fantastic job. All 10 babies have grown significantly, are content, well nursed, and beautiful. Since the mamas are black, I’m curious about feline genetics. There isn’t a black kitten in the bunch. China has three pure white kits, and 2 light battleship grey. Two of the white babies have very faint shading on their little faces, like a siamese or himalayan. Three of Fuzzy’s babies are grey. Their heads are darker, verging toward charcoal gradually fading to light grey. The 4 th is a future grey tiger kitty, I think and the 5th baby is a darker shade of grey with a white stripe on her nose, and a spot of white on her chest. All 10 look like they’re related, I would bet they have the same father. There is only one mature Tom who comes around that I know of, and he’s all black with a white patch on his chest. He’s really wild, totally feral. Nobody can get near him and so he’s not neutered. I’ve tried trapping him but always end up with some other critter. I would like to learn about feline genetics and would like hearing from all who know something about how it works, and or receiving links or referrals on the subject. Also if any one knows how to catch the mature Tom, all suggestions are appreciated.22 April, 2011 at 1:06 pm #656887
What great news! I don’t know about the genetics…but it is fascinating that there aren’t any black kittens. They sound beautiful….I’ll take one of each. You may want to start a new thread with the question about catching the Tom. Seems like there are people with a lot of great experience around here…but a new thread with a title about catching the Tom might catch their attention better. Thanks for the update on China, Fuzzy and crew!22 April, 2011 at 1:13 pm #656888
Hi Pam. Glad to hear that all moms and kittens are doing well.
I’m including a couple of links on cat coat color genetics; they are pretty technical/require some understanding of genetics though and I don’t know your background.
Everyone has two copies of each gene; one from mom, one from dad. Dominant: only one copy of the gene is needed to produce the trait. Recessive: two copies are needed to express the trait. So, China carries a recessive longhair gene, which she passed to her daughter, and Fuzzy got a second longhair gene from her father, so she is longhaired. Grey color is caused by a recessive gene that “dilutes” the black pigment; each mom must have one copy and so must the putative dad to produce grey kittens. Dad carries the dominant white-spotting form of the gene (he is spotted), so each kitten gets a 50% chance of receiving the spotting allele from him. The shading sounds like “pointing” which is produced by a recessive temperature-sensitive albino allele. Have fun genotyping your kittens!24 April, 2011 at 11:07 am #656889
Thank you for the kitty genetics “101-A” quick course and the links. You presented the information so clearly , and further piqued my interest, My education in science goes back to my college studies. I was a dance major, with a minor in psychology, during the early to late1970’s. I’ve had a life long interest in fossils, and rocks, and anthropology, and paleontology, but I’ve not had the benefit of college course studies. I’m self taught, having read alot and learned from those who know far more than I, and like you are willing to share. I can always access a scientific dictionary for easy reference. I’m enjoying the internet immensely, and this 4G mobile device is amazing. I can’t wait to genotype the babies and mamas, aunts and uncles, et al. Thank you for your generous response. Happy Easter!24 April, 2011 at 11:19 am #656890
Pam, I’ve been busy and had not read your updates until now, It’s great to hear that both Mamas and all 10 kitties are well and growing and coping. You’ve done a fantastic job keeping the mamas fed and in good condition so they can look after the babies. Yay Fuzzy for the maternal instincts kicking in.24 April, 2011 at 1:06 pm #656891
It is, it’s terrific news! Wow, you have quite a handful there!
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