Monday, May 19, 2014

Fostering Kittens

That CRAZY Woman did volunteer to kitten sit (foster) some kittens during this current kitten season.  What on EARTH was she thinking?  Well she WASN'T. 

The wee Russian Blue (ya right...) 
Not only did she not ask my permission
Not only did she completely disregard my privacy
She commenced with malice and aforethought to completely RUIN 
what would have been a delightful, relaxing three weeks leading into summer! 

The story goes like this:
**rescue site**  
all you need is a an extra bathroom and some time; we provide everything else

This one I call my 'Little Big Boy' on account of Ollie was in earshot and of course is my BIG BOY!

What really happened
Two darling older kittens (lets say 5 weeks) were delivered with litter, a 40 lb bag of dry kitten chow and a case of wet foods (Natural Balance good stuff too!) 
One litter box
One scooper
This darling, dainty Tortie Vickie nicknamed Gemini but I call her
Princess Buttercup

Can you take 4 more?  They are from a private party (whatever that means) and are healthy.  They are about five weeks old also. Their Foster mom will bring your supplies.  

That Woman thinking
Oh that's fine!  The two will have company and six would really be all I think I could handle
Mini Spitty Tot always has gerber foodie face~

The reality: 
Four kittens were dropped off; their bums were covered in dried on diarrhea; so much so they needed to be soaked and their tails and bottoms 'massaged' to get the gookies off.  ICK.  There was no food; there was only a bag of KMR which is sort of like powdered milk with protein and stuff. 
No litter box; no scoop; no foods, nada. 

It took three days to get them to look like this: 

cleaned up after much soaking; now resting and soaking up sun.

So off That Woman goes to the store 
(the first of at least 15 trips-- NOT exaggerating for wet ones; then back for actual baby wipes as the wet ones are not for babies.)  The kittens are more like 2 to 3 weeks old.  So back to the store for baby food.  Regular clay litter. They all have gut issues which then infects the other two healthy kittens. Now all six are pooping machines.

That Woman smiles & gets baby food and baby rice and her good friend and Vet brings a bottle of fluids and shows That CRAZY Woman how to do subq's on tiny, squirming balls of dryer lint. Because diarrhea in tiny kittens is deadly.  They become so dehydrated they can fade in days.  This prospect scares That Woman more than the thought of 'hurting' the kitten by using the needle.  Srsly; the needle is nearly as long as the frickin kittens!  She is terrified; but sucks it up and in the hope of saving lives 

and I would like to add something here that may be a bit dark but I'm guessing every.single.foster.parent. has this running in their heads at some point; 'Am I just prolonging the inevitable?'  My friend Vickie the Vet does spays and neuters all day long; sometimes 80 in a day but that is not even the tiniest grain of sand in the Sahara desert. There are so many kitties.  So many older kitties who will be put to sleep because of the influx of so many kittens. There simply isn't room for all. That thought leads down a very dark path indeed and That Woman can well understand the pathos that drives those who dare to save all they can but also those whose job it is to make the hard decision when during a spay, on a pregnant female ready to give birth they chose to abort the litter.  

THAT is brave and takes the kind of balls That Woman hopes she never has to have.

But She has volunteered.  And Good, Bad, or otherwise, she will keep these six and take care the best she can until they are placed honoring her commitment.  But she won't be doing this again. She's promised me.  The other night I was yakkin and she had just sat down from bathing, feeding, cleaning, littering, towel changing kittens and though she came and gave me pets (and some gerbers) she realized that she only has so much energy and if I were to get sick she would really lose the very last bit of her mind. Plus I put the toeless foot on her and she nearly got leaky but understood I still loves her.  

Littlest Siamese (Smidget) who sits in my palm with room to spare.  This is after butt bath; fluids administered.  I take my thumb and rub from nose to forehead and instantly she's asleep. 

'Runt' aka Smidget watching Raiders of the Lost Ark with me. #notspoiledonebit!

The kitten wheel
(Those are 1 foot tiles)
Note little SpittyTot's head shoving Little Big Boy out of the way even though he's got more than enough foods right under his little gob!  He gets very growly and must endure 'time outs'  while the others eat and he is not a very patient soul!  MOL

More kitten antics later.  I've been posting vids on FB and may upload them here as I get better.  They are hard to video! 


  1. You are wonderful. I've been there - years ago - and know what it's like. But they are adorable, aren't they?

  2. Lots of purr, purrayers, headbumpies, and anything else we can send.

  3. Your human is awesome for undertaking all this. Of course... what else was she going to do? But she is awesome nonetheless! Paws up!

  4. I've never fostered, so I'm always awed by those who take it on.

    I know it's a grain of sand in the desert, what all foster parents do, rescue workers, the vets who make these life and death decisions (which I certainly don't have the balls to do, figuratively speaking). But that doesn't make the service any less important or worthy.

    There's a quote I like: Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world's grief. Do justly, now. Love mercy, now. Walk humbly, now. You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it. -The Talmud

    I'm not sure if my interpretation is what was intended, but I read that as while we can't resolve the world's needs or erase the suffering of Beings, we're still "obliged" to do what we can, in some small way. That we need to leave our little corner of the world a bit better, in whatever manner feels right for us.

    No matter what happens with these kittens, this is what YOU are doing.

    Hugs and peace, and purrs to them.

  5. Big props for your human for fostering. She is doing an amazing job. Six healthy kittens are a handful. Six sick kittens are unthinkably hard work. Fostering is something we can't do because Ashton would lose her kitty mind, and we're amazed by the job she is doing. Ms. Stella and friends, don't worry, they'll be grown and gone to new homes before you know it, so hang in there.

  6. Sending hugs (and maybe some wine or beer). Hoping they grow strong and healthy fast - and don't figure out how to get out of the tub too soon.

  7. guys...may yur mom be blessed ten fold coz noe matter if her taked on 1, 6 ore 16, her iz helpin ta saves a life; make a difference; offer love & compassionship....

    tell her if her gets "stuck" in a not sure what ta due or needle help........ stuff like that... jeanne might be abe bull ta offer sum tips...leeve her a comment at random felines...they bee on blogger two

    high paws N headbonx ♥♥♥♥

  8. Bless you. We all know they all can't be saved. But one at a time (or in your case 6 at a time). My heart goes out to those that foster. It's funny the Line you wrote from the Shelter is nearly identical to the one our local Shelter posted on FB. It's harder than it looks. Thank you for being so honest and what you've done is amazing.

  9. and then they will turn a corner and be bigger and stronger....and then ready for their forever homes. and once they are gone you will think...."sure, I can do that again". though it is a shame that the second group didn't come with enough information.... glad you have a v-e-t who's brain you can pick (that helps).

  10. oh - and it is hard when you are sitting there watching them struggle and not sure what tomorrow is going to bring and then think about all the others out there and....your head will explode. so here is what mom does: "I can't do everything, but I can do something" and that means helping the ones you have and making a difference for THEM :)

  11. Oh! Thanks and too many congratulations to your human!!!!!!!!!!

  12. OH.MY.CAT. We're running to tell mommy to never even THINK of doing this! We figure her heart can't take it! And we're sure her head would explode, and then who would clean up the mess, we ask you?!?Stella, SRSLY, your human's a saint and a hero. But also (we agree with you) kinda CRAY CRAY. *wink* at least she had a few pats left over from you when you horked. And nooooo mommy, no squeeing over the cuteness of Spittytot and company. Nonononono. Sincerely, Faraday (uh, and Allie and Maxie too)

  13. I have such deep respect for what you took on.. and what happened with you has happened to me too many times, it is why I refuse to mix litters any more. It is hard because I so want to help and saying no can actually hurt, but I know it is in the best interest of the cats I can save..

    I've also had a couple of pregnant cats I was fostering spayed. It is a hard decision to make, but you are right in that there is no promise that the kittens will make it, that the mother will survive the labor, etc.. In one instance it was the totally right decision as the kittens had already passed.. and that was the one time someone tried telling me that spaying a pregnant cat was wrong.. and a vet tech no less. I gave that woman what for, and ended with the facts of this particular case.

    sending purrs to all of you as you navigate this new adventure.. and I hope the meds work to clear things up for the kits, so this gets back to being fun!

  14. Bless you for doing this! It's very hard work, but worth it, if you can hang in there.

  15. I only had three to care for when I did this and found that some days I didn't have any time for my own. I understand how much work this is. Bless you for giving it your best. They are alive and thriving so your best is working. Hope all is much better soon so you will be in the room playing and having a ball with them. Deb

  16. Such hard work, but so worth while! Great job. Not sure I could do that, Caro x

  17. Well, Ms. Stella, you might not be thrilled about it, but the Woman is doing a good thing taking care of those lil' babies. And they won't be staying forever. Just until they're okay on their own. But you deserve some extra treats for all you're going through. And the Woman deserves a medal...or at least a few glasses of wine. :)

  18. This is a big job! We know! And in the off chance nobody says so, we THANK YOU for helping these little souls! Our mom told herself that every day and it helped through all those poopy butt baths. Your mom is doing a very good and important thing and we'll send lots of purrs to her and those tiny ones. PURRS....

  19. OMC, Mom Stacy, you are so brave. Our mom says she cannot do the foster thing 'cause Mauricio is so jealous and because she doesn't have anymore time than taking care of us, but we know she'd like to get her mitts on at least one of those itty bitty kitties. We are sending our comforting purrs to Stella as we know she must be feeling very left out and lonely. Good luck to all. We'll be purring and Mom will be praying that they all survive and grow big and strong. XO, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

  20. Stacy, you are doing such a good job.We know how much work it can be so we know that your totally worn out. Those little kitties are so lucky to have come to you. Can't wait to hear the next installment. They really are so cute. Thanks for doing this for the kittens.

  21. You are VERY brave, Stacy. And loving. And wise. And I can totally empathize with all the places your thoughts take you do your best to save the few you can.
    Bless you.

  22. My heart would break as I am a wuss. I want to help, so I throw green papers at thrones who do rescue. To pay for fuds and other needs of the babies. I am so emotional that I am no good at all for these precious babies. I just help in the way that I can. Thank you for helping these bright spirits.


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