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5 Kittens

The kittens are gone now. Amazingly, thankfully, we were able to find homes for all 5 of them … because, honestly, as much as we would’ve liked to have kept them: Diane already has her limit (2), and I happen to have a cat who absolutely HATES other cats (she seems to love dogs, though; go figure), so that rules out bringing another feline inside, and I live a little too close to a busy street to think all too seriously about having an “outdoor cat” of my own. Although, when The Lovely suggested I get a small doghouse and bring Kiddle and one of her kittens over here to live, I did give it a fair measure of consideration. Then I thought, again, of the street, and the poison ivy they’d be crawling through, occasionally (I’ve Roundupped most of it, but there’s still plenty that’s not dead, so I plan to spray it all again this weekend … and even though I know the cats won’t get it, I suspect I would if I wallered them the way I intended to), and decided that finding new homes for them was the best alternative.

Over the last couple of days, I’d been asking my co-workers, “Does anyone need a cat?” Because I know plenty of people want a cat (and others who don’t), but most of them aren’t going to consider getting a cat unless they’re convinced (or perhaps just reminded) that they need one.

Sheila was the first to give in. Which wasn’t surprising because she’s a little like me: Easy. She told me she’d take Blondi if it happened to be a boy. Mid-morning, I took her over to meet him (or her), and immediately, Sheila loved him (or her). In fact, she first pronounced him a “she” but then said, “She might be a boy; it’s kinda early to tell.” She was holding her (or him) the entire time, and then she found a gray-and-white kitten she liked, too.

Would she possibly consider taking 2 kittens?

“Maybe!” she said.

Later in the day, Traci heard us talking about kittens. She seemed interested, so I asked her if she needed any. “We don’t have any right now, so I’d take a couple!” she said.

“Well, you’ve got 3 boys; shouldn’t you get one for each of them?” While she pondered this, I mused, “Wait, if you take 3 kittens, and Sheila takes 1, that will leave 1 kitten all by itself. Are you sure you don’t want 4 kittens?”

Traci made the obligatory phone call to ask/tell her husband about the kittens. An hour or so later, I asked her, “What did you decide: 2 kittens? Or 3? Or 4?”

“Ah, just box them all up!” she said. (Traci, apparently, is easy, too!)

It wasn’t too difficult to say goodbye to the kittens because I had already bidden them farewell earlier in the day when I had dropped by to watch the last 3 innings of the baseball game (Cubs 2, Cardinals 1; Cubs move into first place!) — in-between taking pictures of the kittens as I, for the last time, watched them all play together.

I have discovered that the term “as playful as kittens,” while totally overused, is just about as accurate a simile as any I’ve ever heard.

I got teary-eyed when I thought about not getting to see them play together on a daily basis. I worried about Kiddle and how she would “feel” when she realized her kittens were gone. I mean, I believe they were ready — they were still nursing, but they also were able to eat everything we put in front of them (milk, wet cat food, dry cat food) — and Kiddle seemed completely famished, every time I appeared, but still: Do mama cats realize what has happened when their kittens are gone? Can they possibly understand that yes, indeed, they had done everything “right” when it came to raising their kids?

I do wonder.

Kitten & Bubbles

Kittens & Tennis Balls

Headlock

I love this next one:

Paws Raised

Pinned

Upside-Down

Kitten & Shovel

2 Kittens Eating

Kiddle & Kittens

Since I last posted, I made another shocking DIscovery: A 5TH KITTEN!

Kitten Free-For-All

Yes, as you can see, The Official Kitten Count now includes 3 gray-and-whites, 1 yellow-and-white and 1 black. I have tentatively nicknamed the yellow kitty Blondi the Brave — mostly because it’s blonde, and I altered the name ever-so-slightly in honor of my friend Mary Blondi and her family, and also because this one seems to be the bravest of the litter (or perhaps the boldest) — and the black kitty Dickey because it has a white patch on its chest, just below its chin (Mona said she prefers the nickname Tux, which is still a possibility). As for the 3 gray-and-whites: I’m tempted to go with something obvious like The 3 Stooges (“Who are these Stooges you speak of?”) or Huey, Dewey and Louie or, maybe, Tweedledum, Tweedledee and TweedleDI.

I know better than to get too attached because, soon enough, we’re going to have to let them go … but not until they’re ready and we’ve found good homes with caring humans who really really want them. (Already, one of Diane’s tennis team members has said she wants one, and Karl and Sherry said they might take a couple of them; their kidlets LOVE cats!)

In the meantime, though, I can’t help but enjoy them.

Kitty & Wheel

Blonde on Green

Gato y Gato

Kissy Face

Squeezing Through

Fuzzy

Kittens & Stairs

Nurse Kiddle

Sleeping ... Sorta

A couple of days ago, I noticed that Kiddle was hanging around the corner of the garage. So I told Diane she might want to keep an eye on the cat because she might be doing her business back there — as opposed to pooping right in the middle of the garage, as she has a couple of times (the cat, that is; not Diane).

This afternoon, Diane called me at work.

“I think Kiddle might’ve been a little smarter than we thought she was,” she said. “I saw 2 kittens back there in the corner!”

Kiddle has kittens! Who knew?!

I mean, Kiddle strayed up to us, what, about 2 months ago? Maybe a little more, I dunno. And she looked to be not that much older than a kitten herself … but, now that I think about it, she did have a somewhat oversized belly, which we simply chalked up to her not eating regular meals. Or having worms, maybe.

She never gave the slightest indication whatsoever that she was a mom!

By the time I arrived on the scene today, the “2 kittens” had increased to 3: a yellow-and-white kitten and 2 gray-and-white kittens. They looked to be about 3 or 4 weeks old — maybe older? How do you know for sure? They were taking turns nursing on Kiddle and lying in the other corner, squeezed between a cardboard box and one of those cobweb dusters.

Then we made another discovery: an all-black 4th kitten!

I managed to get a picture of 3 of them:

Kittens!

(I think I’m in love.)

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