Saturday, August 30, 2008

Weigh in

We hit another milestone yesterday. Everyone is at 1lb! Yay! The itty bitties are all happy and playful. They got their first dose of Albon last night. Mama was Not pleased, but the little ones didn't seem to mind too much.

They all like the cat charmer toy, which is no surprise. I think every kitten/cat we ever had loves it. Even mama got in a little play time. She really seems to be feeling better, and is getting more active. She is still shy, but when she hears the door open, she makes a move to the door, as do the itty bitties.

Gwen was cute playing on top of a box on the bottom of the shelving unit in the room, and you can see she had a little trouble getting down! No harm was done, and now they can have a break until evening when they all get their next dose of medication.

Note to self: Wear long pants and socks when going into kitty room!

Friday, August 29, 2008

more meds for the troops

Got the call yesterday about mama's stool sample. She has coccidia. (intracellular parasites) So, babies most likely have it too. Mama's pretty ticked at me already, what with the clavamox for her upper respiratory infection. Oh well, we will get her all fixed up and healthy, then we will work even harder on the socialization issue.
Other than that, everyone is gaining weight, and just as important in my book, they are all VERY good at using the litter box. I am so happy about that. : )

Greer looking very cute

Gwen using my leg as a scratching post

Gibby thinks it's time to weigh in again

A little down time

Thursday, August 28, 2008

all's well...

Everything seems to be going smoothly. (I always hate to say anything like that, lest I jinx it!) all 3 kittens are very active and seem to be enjoying the new freedom of having a room to play in, instead of a little cage. Mama seems to be getting more use to me, cowering, but letting me pet her. She has never been hissy, just scared. We seemed to be making progress...and then came the antibiotics.

She was NOT happy about getting Clavamox. Still no hissing, but trying oh so hard to get away! Having to get it twice a day for the next 7-10 days is goingtobe a setback for sure, but she is so congested. I think she is already feeling better after just one dose. I tried to get a weight on her yesterday so I could make sure I was giving her the correct dose, but all I have is a kitten size scale. I think I got a fairly accurate reading, even with the squirming. I know she is small, but I was surprised at just how little she is. 5lbs! She is a tiny girl, barely more than a kitten herself.

Gibby has a bit of a food face. Need to clean him up.

I am starting to be able to tell the itty bitties apart without looking for the "markers" I was using. Gwen is the chirper, and is more black than the other two. Greer has the blue collar, but she has silver tips on the hair on her legs. Gibby is a boy, and I used to look for his little wet butt, (which seems to be getting better, less runny poop) but now I see his tail is sort of squared off at the tip, unlike the girls.

Note the squared off tail.

I guess it's time to piss mama cat off again, with medication. I hope she forgives me.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Little hellions

Day 2 for this litter went smoothly. All 4 seemed to be doing OK, with the exception of loose stool from Gibby, all seems well. Gibby is still playing, and eating, and the vet did come and get a stool sample from him and mama, so we will just keep an eye on him.

Here, the chirping Gwen chews on the carrier.

The little ones are real Hell raisers. Rowdy would be a good name for any one of them! I sit down, one has latched on to the hem of my shirt, and is pulling like dog playing tug-o-war. Another is sitting in the bowl of the scale, chewing on the edges. The other is on top of the carrier, biting the handle! It is madness! Mama on the other hand, just sits in the corner on her bed, taking it all in.

Gwen plays with a mouse

It didn't take them long to perfect the the door rush either. As soon as they hear it, they all come running. Even Mama gets up and takes a look.

Gibby takes a test run in the scale bowl.

Gibby looks scared.

Greer practices her climbing skills.

Mama doesn't have any milk to speak of. I have been mixing KMR and pouring it in the food bowl, and they all love it, even mama. It is fine for nursing mama's anyway, and she needs to gain some weight. The vet said maybe we should separate her from the babies, because it may be stressing her. I will see how it goes today.

Monday, August 25, 2008

New week, new litter

Round 4.
We took into care today a mama and 3 babies. Babies look like they are about 3 weeks old. The eyes are open, but still blue. Mama seems a little lethargic, but she did eat some when I got her here. She is really congested, and may be dehydrated, so I will see if I can get the vet here tomorrow to take a look at her. The babies seem fine, but the little boy has poopie butt. He seems ok, but I want to get him looked at too, and the housecall vet is just the best answer in my opinion.

So, we have mama, 2 girls and 1 boy. They all have names already, but we already changed one name, and mama will get a new one eventually. Mamas are always called mama for a while, until I get to know them a little better. Mama is Gia, one girl is Greer, one was Geneva, but we changed it to Gwen, and the boy is Gibson, but we will call him Gibby, after a friend of the family. : ) I had to change Geneva's name. I went to school with a Geneva, and it just didn't fit.

I can already see, even though these guys are tiny, that they are going to be a hand full. They immediately came out of their crate, and went right to where I had hung towels over the wicker baskets in the bottom of the shelving unit, and proceeded to climb up them. I ended up taking the baskets out. They can live in the attic until these guys go back.

These little girls are total gang bangers. (Maybe we should have kept Gwen's name as Geneva...We called Geneva Kamakazi on the Field Hockey field!) Gibby did finally get into it an mixed it up a bit, but he was a mama's boy for a while this evening. He looked tuckered out, and had to catch a cat nap while the girls played. They are hard to tell who is who, and as you can see, they look alike. I finally put a blue collar on Greer so I could tell the girls apart. I figured out later that Gwen "chirps" when she plays, so I probably could tell the difference without the collar, but it was an easy fix.

I also figured out that mama doesn't have much if any milk. I mixed up a batch of KMR (kitten replacement milk) and since I didn't have a bottle, I put a nipple on a syringe, and tried to see if they would take a supplement. Gwen almost tried to swallow the nipple whole! Eventually, I just mixed the KMR with the canned food, and they all bellied up to the bar, so to speak. Mama even came over and had some. Hopefully, I can get an appointment tomorrow, and have them all checked out, just to be safe.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Did you ever wonder?

Did you ever stop an wonder...what is the velocity of poop flung from the paw of a kitten? Probably not. And I have to admit, I probably wouldn't have either, except today was clean up after the last batch of kittens day, and I was shocked at how far and how high up I had to go to clean poop! It reminded me of the silly jokes we learned as kids, like "book titles, and authors." Remember? The one that came to mind today was "Spots on the wall" by Who Flung Du. Well, let me tell you, I KNOW who flung it!

So, my babies are gone, off to the shelter, and on view to find a permanent home. I already miss 'em. It's weird waking up in the morning, and not having to feed them. Seeing little paws under the door, just waiting to make the mad dash out as soon as I open it. I thought I even heard them crying to get out last night. Like the old phantom ring of the cell phone. Maybe I need a break. But I can't. The babies need me. I have a mama and 3 babies coming Monday. I was told mama is very shy, and maybe a little feral, so they want me to take this batch. I guess I have a reputation now. Hopefully, there will be less heartache with this next batch. We can hope.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Last Day!

Well, the show is over. At least at my house. The itty bitties are no longer itty bitty, and they are going back to the shelter today! They are all 3 sweet, cute and love attention, so I have no doubt they will be adopted quickly. They are quite good at being charming, and all have loud purr boxes.

I am not sure what the fixation on the bathroom is. They do seem to like it, as you can see. Sully is quite the acrobat. He also likes to get on the counter downstairs, and leap from one section, over to the other. Ripley does it to, but she is 3, and quite a bit larger! He looks like a little flying squirrel.

So, I suppose this is my last post on these 3. Sullivan, Reuben and Natalie will be replaced by more, but at least not until Monday! In the mean time, I may fill these next couple of days worth of post with some past kittens, or even some of my own. I mean after all, Buck, Bishop and Bentley were all shelter animals, even though Buck was my only foster. (Ripley was sort of a foster, but never got to the shelter...someone gave her to me at about 4 weeks, and we just decided to keep her.)

Enjoy the last round of photos from this group, and we will begin a new chapter next week...

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Everyone is at weight!

After a big stall in weight gain, Natalie had a "surge" and is now 2lbs, 12 oz! Yay! All are scheduled to go back to the shelter for the next spay/neuter day, which is Tuesday. I will most likely take them back Friday or Saturday.

I was in their room this morning, trying to take some photos, but it is really hard to do when they are in their room. As soon as I sit down, they climb all over me. They bite the camera strap, they touch their nose to the lens, they jump from the kitty condo to my get the picture. I did manage to get some though.

Poor Joy spent some time cleaning the kitty room yesterday while I was at a networking function. I have been rather neglectful as far as a good scrubbing goes, and it really can get bad fast. Because all were on kaopectate, and also the Panacur worming meds, there were little pink and white splatter marks all over the floor where they try to spit it out and shake their heads. The pink and white liquid does tend to fly. She did a great job cleaning the place up. I appreciated it, and I am sure the itty bitties did too. Once they are back at the shelter, I will clean the place up top to bottom. The walls next to the litter boxes get abused, especially when there is loose stool involved. They inadvertently step in it, and shake the offensive foot to clean it off. So, a good wall scrubbing is in order. Nuff said.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

the long wait

The shelter is backed up now for spay/neuters, so I have to keep the "kids" until next Monday. They are all doing fine, but still Natalie is not to weight! She is only at 2lbs, 61/2 oz. She has stalled on her weight gain. She is eating, and growing, and seems healthy enough, but she is just slow to gain weight. They were wormed again, so I am not sure what the deal is. They all still have loose stools, so I guess I will get the housecall vet to come take a look at them.

They all came to "help" me work in my office yesterday. I know, it's a disaster, but they had lots of things to explore. Natalie found another paperball, so she was happy.

Monday, August 18, 2008

More play time

As the itty bitties get bigger and bigger, they are less and less happy to be locked in one room, so they get some play time each day with full access to the whole house. Of course, Sullivan wants to run down to the basement immediately. I have no idea why he is so intent on the basement, but he is determined.

While out and about, Natalie found one of Buck's favorite play things. It's true, Buck's favorite toy is a paper ball. If you crunch up paper, Buck will come running from where ever he is in the house. Natalie carried that paper ball around the entire time she was out. Buck will fetch it, bring it back and will keep that up for a long time. Natalie just likes to carry it around, and will even play with the little mouse toy with the paper ball in her mouth.

Reuben is a sweet guy. He tries hard to keep up with the other two. When he came here, he was sort of a bully. He had so much energy, he would "Catzilla" the others, attacking them relentlessly. Now he is the one on the receiving end of that most of the time.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Old Friends

Joy and I went to visit Joy's sister today. We also got to visit Yoshi and Spats. We persuaded her to adopt those two from our last litter. They are still adorable. We took over a kitty condo that my neighbor gave us. She got it for her two cats, and they would have nothing to do with it. We already have a huge one for our cats, and the itty bitties have one in their room, so we took it over to Maria. They loved it!

The photos today are of the itty bitties playing outside the kitty room. They are getting so big, it just seems cruel to keep them in there all day without getting out to run! Here, Reuben takes a peek out the front window.

Bentley takes a drink while Reuben watches Sully try to steal a little piece of doggie kibble.

Reuben sees what Bentley is doing outside.

Natalie surveys all from her perch on the countertop.

Hopefully, all 3 of these guys will stay healthy, and can get back to the shelter, be adopted and go to a great forever home!
And soon...they are getting so big...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Out and about

The itty bitties got to come and "visit" today. We had friends over, and they got to come out and play. They are all three into something at all times, and it's hard to keep up sometimes. My friend Deb got some great shots of Reuben hiding in a crock. They got about 45 minutes of running time, and I put them back in their room. After about 5 minutes, they were romping around up there, and everyone in the room understood why this blog is called elephantsupstairs.

So, we have two pictures of Reuben, being all cute, a picture of Joy holding all 3 of the itty bitties, and what's that last photo? No, it's not a cat. We had a family of 5 racoons in our side yard tonight. The little buggers have been after my fish in my fish pond, so I have put netting over it to keep them out. Now they come and eat the food we put out for the feral cats! I guess we just adopted them, too.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

running of the ...bulls?

The itty bitties are not so itty bitty any more. Sully is huge, at over 3 and a half lbs. Reuben is a little thin, and Natalie is tiny compared to them, but still all have made weight for spay/neuter. I am going to go ahead and get them going on a last round of Panacur. Can't hurt. Maybe Reuben will gain a little more weight.

They do love to get out of the kitty room and run up and down the hall. They all 3 seem to really like hanging out in the tub. I am impressed that they can get in so easily. Of course, if they are watching the resident kitties here, they probably learned it from them.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

quiet on the home front

Sometimes I think our own cats think they don't get enough attention, and have to do something to get it. Like keeping you from washing your hands. Or keeping you from showering in the morning...

I hate to say anything about the itty bitties...scared to jinx myself. Everyone seems to be fine for the time being. I found something strange in the litter box yesterday though. A NORMAL STOOL! Yes, hard to believe, but I saw a normal stool. Then, I saw Sully produce another one. They other two still have loose stool, but they are gaining weight, and all seem full of energy. I will be happy to get them all adopted. (Just in time for another batch I suspect) I will take a couple of days to get the room cleaned up again, and spray it down with trifectant, just in case. We won't be going on vacation until the last few days of September, so we will be able to take some more before then. Hopefully, they will all be, and stay healthy!