TNR can be a tricky and consuming task, especially when you can’t track down all the cats. The neighbors have not been cooperative in responding to my flyering attempts, and I cannot locate where the cats are living, or whom else is feeding the cats. Which leads to extra stress and unfortunately kittens.
Things had been nice and quiet in my neighborhood for a few months. My girls had fallen into a regular routine, there were no signs of “new” cats, thought I knew they were there. I had been keeping my eyes and ears open for signs of the uncaught cats in my neighborhood, and hoping that my neighbors would respond. Then my beloved Fluffy Butt went MIA. Today she will have been gone for two weeks. No signs of her. I knew at some point it was inevitable that she would disappear, but it is still hard to accept. I can only hope nothing horrible happened to her. Godspeed Fluffy Butt.
Dealing with the loss of my Fluffy Butt and recollecting about Poosh, who is still out there somewhere, and his family whom moved down state, after talking with their caregiver, I decided to go for a walk. I was mainly hoping to stretch my legs but looking to catch a glimpse of my Fluffy, Poosh or maybe track the residence of the cats. Instead, I discover kittens. Kittens. Four feral kittens, 6-8 weeks old and their momma. Not that there is ever a good time for kittens, but now, in the middle of my school quarter is especially horrible.
So this past week has been me scrambling to gather supplies–traps, dog crates for socializing, linens, toys and all those other supplies kittens need. Tonight when I went to feed I discovered one has an injured tail. The very tip of the baby’s tail is furless, which means the longer he is out the higher risk of infection. And since my regular clinic is appointment only, I have to get mom in this
Friday, wait till November or go to one of the other low cost clinics–which are not convenient for me. So in the midst of working on two graduate classes, I get to spend the end of my week trapping kittens and one very angry, protective and wary mom cat. *sigh* At least I know where they are, have them on a regular schedule and have the cooperation of the home owners whose yard they are living in.
I also have a few “new” males to catch, which is particularly difficult As regular followers will know, I have two or three regulars who spend their nights hanging out in my and my neighbors’ yards. They do not take kindly to the stranger cats that sometimes hang around looking for scraps of food on their evening patrols. Thus, when they smell really attractive odors coming from the trap–fish and catnip–they are loath to let anyone else get close to those sniffs. Little Black spend the night blocking my target from getting anywhere near the trap. When I laid down an extra plate of food to distract her, target cat ate the extra food and left.
So I have some stressful days ahead, caring for sick and injured feral kittens while trying to teach them to trust people. Splitting them up from mom even though it is for their own benefit. Trapping them. Doing all this while working and attending grad school. I must be crazy. Stay tuned to find out!