|Three Little Kittens|
| This page is about my three cats, Cole, Princess, and Cali. They were born in approximately the middle of April, 2002.
I first discovered them in May, playing in the downspout outside my home office window! They were with their brother, who was black, and their mother. The kittens were so cute! But they were all very wild, or feral.
I started to put food out for them every day and would
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|Three Little Kittens|
|go and sit near their hiding place. They liked to hide under my office in a small recess in the foundation.
They would not let me get very near, so I decided to try to get them to come to me! I started putting their food on the edge of my deck. They would come and eat, but wouldn't let me near for months. Finally they learned to trust me enough that the little black kitten brushed up against me and then let me pet him. That was a big day!
After the little black kitten showed how brave he could be, the others began to be more trusting. Cali, the calico, wasn't going to let her brother get all of the attention, so she let me pet her next. The charcoal gray male, Cole, wouldn't let a girl show him up!The last to let me pet her was the tabby, Princess. She's still the most shy.
Unfortunately, in October, the little black kitten disappeared. I've never seen him again. But, about that time, a mangy, ill-tempered cat, who looked like quite a fighter, began hanging around. Since he looked pretty tough and like he was old, my husband and I called him Papa. He wouldn't let me touch him though, any more than the kittens' mother would.
As the weather became colder, I decided to build a shelter for the cats. I took a large cardboard box and covered it completely with large plastic garbage bags. I cut a hole in each end for an entrance and an exit, put a piece of carpet inside, and added several old towels. The cats loved it! All three kittens would get inside together and stay warm. However, if Papa was around, he'd take over! I needed more shelters.
I bought a couple of pet carriers to double as shelters, too. Since I would need to take the cats to the veterinarian as soon as they'd let me, I needed them anyway. I filled them with old towels and carpet scraps, covering the side openings as well as I could to keep out the wind and snow. The cats took to these, also, but they preferred the box.
In January of 2003, I was able to catch Cali and take her to the vet. She got her shots, was spayed, and checked out well. Princess followed and was declared healthy, too.
Then I managed to catch Papa. Unfortunately, the cat we thought was old, turned out to be only one to two years old, but he was sick with Feline Immune Deficiency. He wouldn't let me pet him because he had sores from cat bites all over his body.I had two options: I could keep him inside for the rest of his life, isolated from other cats, or I could have him put to sleep. What a horrible decision to make! It broke my heart, but I had to have him put to sleep. He would have been miserable inside. I keep a photo of him in my home office.
Cole went to the vet last. He was neutered, given his shots, and immunized for FIV because of Papa. Since then, he's been the most cuddly and affectionate of the three kittens! He's very gentle and loving.
During the winter, I started to move the food dishes inside the kitchen door to the deck. I'd prop the door open so that the cats could see the food and could come in, but still be free to escape if they wanted. I tried to shut the door when they were inside, but they would panic.
Finally, in September of this year, we put a kitty door into the lower portion of our kitchen door. We keep the storm door propped open, and the cats are free to come and go as they please, at all hours of the day.
They typically spend the night inside and at least part of the day outside.
The girls, especiallyCali, like to bring me "treats". She has brought me a part of a mouse, a dead bird, and even a live bird! The live bird flew around the house for half of the night until I was able to let it out through an open door. I think Cali is trying to teach me to hunt!
These three cats have given me far more than I've given to them. They have given me unconditional love and companionship. I adore them!
|Princess in the sun|