Weekend With the Kittens

This weekend has been a wild ride. It started off when I was watering my backyard garden Saturday morning. I was outside, enjoying my plants and looking for the frogs that like to hang out in some of my pots. My youngest daughter, Becca, came out to be with me because she, too, enjoys nature and being with me in the garden. When she came outside, she got spooked by a cat on our porch that she thought was a squirrel.

After watering a few plants on our deck, I started hearing mewling. It freaked me out because it was unexpected. I looked down in the planter box where I was watering and it turned out there were newborn kittens down in the box that had gotten dripped on when I was watering. Of course, I stopped watering because I didn’t want to risk getting them wet again, plus I wanted to see how many kittens there were and see how big/old they were. It appeared there were only three kittens, but it was hard to tell because they were all cuddled together.

A bit later, my older daughter, Liz, came out to see the kittens and immediately fell in love. First, she loves cats and second, the kittens looked very much like our cat, Buddy, who is a gray tabby cat. I texted a picture of the kittens to my sister who also loves cats and rescued and adopted two newborn kittens herself back in March. She asked me what I was going to do and I told her that I would let nature take its course. I figured that since we had seen a cat on our porch near the kittens that she would return to care for them so we simply kept an eye on the kittens to make sure they were faring well and waited for her return.

Later that evening, after being gone all day at my dad’s house swimming, we checked on the kittens and they were still all there and moving around a lot. That is when I discovered we had four kittens instead of three. Three kittens were tabby cats and one was mostly black and white.

kittens

The next morning I checked on the kittens and they were still doing well. However, when we returned from church later that morning, one of the four kittens was missing. We had no idea where it went. We thought maybe the momma cat had come back to move the kittens or that something had gotten it. Throughout the day I continued to watch the kittens to make sure they were doing okay and waiting to see if the momma cat would return. I even put down some flour around the box to see if she made any paw prints, as suggested by a website I read. I also reached out via social media and to the Houston SPCA to see if anyone would be able to nurse some newborn kittens as we did not have the ability to do so. The momma cat was still MIA on Sunday evening.

Monday morning arrived with thunder rolling so I checked on the kittens and planned to move them into a cardboard box to a more sheltered area. That is when I found that one of the kittens had died overnight. After rescuing the remaining two kittens and getting them into a sheltered area, I proceeded to bury the dead kitten in our backyard. After a while, I decided to sit outside with the two kittens to keep an eye on them as they did not look well themselves. While I was out there, another of the kittens died so I took the last kitten whom I called Simba because he/she seemed to be the strongest of the kittens. I pet the kitten and held it close and talked to it constantly while rocking in our porch rocking chair. Sadly though, it too died. I buried the two kittens and went inside sad that they were unable to survive.

Throughout the weekend I had prayed for their survival and prayed for the momma cat’s return. I had also talked with God about what to do. Several times I considered bottle feeding them, but I knew that I would not be able to keep up the schedule once Tuesday arrived because my husband and I work full time and our girls go to school. I have doubted myself many times for how I handled things, but in the end, I know that God was in control the whole time and that He guided me along telling me what to do. I even talked with my mom, who is in heaven, as she was a vet tech before she got sick to make sure I was doing the right thing. It’s sad how the weekend ended regarding the kittens, but in the end, I know that I did the right thing.