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Cat Health > Need advice re: hand raising 2 & 1/2 wk old kittens! (have a post in kitten corner)

Gypsy

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Purred: Sun Aug 26, '12 10:50am PST 
Hey everyone. I have a detailed post in "Kitten Corner" but no one has responded. Since it seems more people post on this board, I was hoping to find someone experienced in hand raising baby kittens who might read my post in "Kitten Corner" and give me so much needed advice! Any help would be greatly appreciated!
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Gypsy, Aug 26 10:50 am

Kitten Corner > Need advice from someone experienced in hand raising young kittens!
Gypsy

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Purred: Sun Aug 26, '12 10:46am PST 
New update: I'm getting really worried because the black kitten hasn't had a bowel movement in 2 days! The tiger colored kitten has had several bowel movements, but I wonder if it is normal for a 2 & 1/2 week old kitten to have dark yellow poo that is more liquidy...not solid or anything. At first I thought it was her urine, but it's started to become darker and have a tint of brown in it (not much brown...mostly yellow). Both their urine is a light yellow so I've realized the difference between that and the tigers bowel movements.

The black one who hasn't had a bowel movement is eating ravenously. I stimulate his bowels before and after each meal. He is urinating quite a lot, but no poo. How concerned should I be?

Also, still worried I'm not feeding them enough formula! I am now up to giving them 6 or 7 1-ML syringes (per kitten) of formula each feeding (every 2-3 hrs), but they still seem hungry! Their bellies seem full and tight after I feed them, and I'm so afraid of feeding them too much as I've read several articles online which say you can cause harm if you over-feed them. I called my vet yesterday morning and the vet tech said to feed them as much as they want, so I'm not sure what to believe.

Any advice on the correct amount to feed a 2 & 1/2 week old kitten would be greatly appreciated!
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Maizy , Aug 27 1:54 pm


Kitten Corner > Need advice from someone experienced in hand raising young kittens!

Gypsy

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Purred: Sat Aug 25, '12 6:54pm PST 
Yesterday afternoon my mom & I found two kittens (around 2 & 1/2 weeks old) under a table on our back porch. The mother cat is a feral who we've been unable to trap & spay. In the past year Mama kitty has had many litters that always die. She has always given birth to her litters away from our property. We're sure her kittens die or are killed because within 2 weeks of having them she'll show up on our back porch looking for food & won't leave again until she's full term again & ready to have a new litter.

Anyway, this last litter she actually had under my house. She had them 2 & a half weeks ago. Yesterday afternoon we found the two on our porch & wondered why the Mama kitty brought them out of hiding & exposed them to the danger of all the other strays, ferals we take care of, as well as the many racoons that come on our porch at night. We spent all day & night watching to see if she was feeding these two babies, but she never did. A couple times she laid near them & just watched them. But she kept disappearing under the porch. At one point we heard some loud cries coming from under the porch. I climbed under there with a flashlight & was shocked to see the Mama kitty sitting with three kittens! These kittens were almost twice the size of the ones she brought up on the porch & looked much healthier.

I want to point out that the Mama kitty is in bad shape. She is painfully thin & can't gain weight no matter how much we feed her. I wonder if she has contracted a serious disease from the tom cats who impregnate her. Maybe that's what's killing all her litters. Or maybe because she is so emaciated, she cannot produce enough milk to feed her babies. I'm guessing she abandoned the two tiny ones in order to give the big, healthier ones a better chance of survival. I'm sure the two tiny ones couldn't compete with the three large ones to get enough milk.

Needless to say, by late last night the two abandoned kittens didn't look good. So we brought them in our house & began feeding them kitten formula every 2-3 hrs. It's only been a little over 24 hrs since we've had them, but they are already thriving. They've become much more alert & active & their appetites are excellent. We've been feeding them with small, 1-ML syringes. We tried in vein to feed them with a kitten nursing bottle, but they are so little the nipple is too big for their mouths & they don't have the mouth strength to suck the nipple. They are eating well from the syringes, but we're so confused on how much to feed them. The directions on the formula goes by weight, but we have no idea how much they weigh & we have no way of weighing them. Also, all the info online talks about giving 2 & a half wedk old kittens around 50cc's a day, but we are using 1-ML syringes.

Also, I'm worried that neither kitten has had a bowel movement since we've had them in our care. When we feed them, we first try to stimulate their bowels by rubbing their genitals with a cotton ball soaked sith warm water. After they eat we try to stimulate them again. They almost always urinate, but no poopie so far. How long can they go before I should be worried? Also, is it normal that their urine is a bright yellow?

Sorry for the LONG post but I wanted to share as much info as possible. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, especially from someone with experience hand raising kittens.
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» There has since been 3 posts. Last posting by Maizy , Aug 27 1:54 pm


Cat Health > Feral kittens found abandoned...question about feral mama kitty...

Gypsy

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Purred: Sat Aug 25, '12 2:03pm PST 
Oh, forgot to add...no, we haven't gotten the three under the house. They are probably only 3 weeks old or so now that I've gotten a good look at them. We're gonna work to try to tame them, but at this point we're not going to take them from Honey. We really don't have the time or energy to take care of all five kittens, and I think Honey will do okay with just 3. But eventually we need to snatch them up and tame them and get them a home. That's something we're gonna eventually work on. But right now we're gonna focus on these two little ones we took in and see if we can save them first.

(P.S.) Gypsy (the calico pictured on my profile) is Honey's sister. She was semi-feral but got attacked last winter and developed an absess that was so infected she had to have surgery. After her surgery, we brought her home and kept her in my mom's room to recover. We were eventually going to put her back out with her mom and siblings, but we fell in love with her during the time she was inside and couldn't bear to put her back out in the cold! She's pretty much domesticated now and we love her to pieces. Of course, we didn't need ANOTHER stray to take in...we've already got 7 others! So Gypsy makes 8!)
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Frisco, Aug 26 9:49 pm


Cat Health > Feral kittens found abandoned...question about feral mama kitty...

Gypsy

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Purred: Sat Aug 25, '12 1:57pm PST 
My mom (who lives with me) and I volunteer for PET FBI here in cental Ohio doing T&R. In our neighborhood alone we've trapped and fixed several hundred cats over the last 4 or so years (people are CONSTANTLY bringing in unfixed cats here and letting them be outdoor cats....it's really an epidemic but when I approached the management about it several years ago, their answer was to have all the ferals killed. We convinced them not to do that, and we have just kept them out of the loop and focused on working with PET FBI and the Humane Society to get as many fixed as we can).

But Honey is one of those ferals that is crafty and won't allow us to get her. The day we trapped her siblings and mom (her mom is tame, but her and her siblings are feral or semi-feral) we lured all the kittens into a large dog cage with wet food. They all went in, even Honey, but as soon as we swung the door shut, Honey bolted and squeezed through. After that she went missing for several months. We thought she was dead, but one day she showed up looking for food. By then we had done a lot of work with her four siblings and they were pretty tame. One of them disappeared like Honey and was never seen again. We imagine she somehow died. Maybe a cayote got her...not sure.

Anyway, when Honey came back she was in heat and actually allowed my mom to pet her while she ate. One day my mom got her to go into a cat carrier, but as soon as she shut the door, Honey burst through, pushing the door open with so much force you wouldn't believe and escaping yet again. Now Honey is so suspicious of us she rarely lets us get too close to her.

The reason we can't catch her in a live trap is because we have SO many strays and ferals that call our property home that as soon as we set up a trap, they instantly want to go inside and they get trapped. When the trap goes off, Honey is out of here. She's no fool. We've thought about trying to net her, but my mom is unsure of how that will work and if we might hurt her trying to do that. We definately don't want to drug her, because she'll run and hide before the sedative takes affect and she would be at risk of being killed by a predator if she were unconcious or nearly unconcious and we couldn't get to her. I wish that were an option, but I don't think it would be a good idea for a cat.

Anyway, my mom is hoping once she goes back into heat she'll be friendly again and let my mom pet her. My mom's gonna try her darndest to get her in a cage next time around. She is going to wear gloves, scruff her, and throw her in our big dog cage. She might get ripped up, but she's so determined to catch Honey and stop this cycle of having litter after litter.

Anyway, I think I was so full of adrenaline last night that when I looked under the porch and saw those three kittens, I thought they looked huge. Mom and I looked again this afternoon, and they are definately bigger than the two small ones we took in, but it's definately possible they are all from the same litter. Maybe it was a racoon or some other animal that died under my house. Not sure. But I think Honey brought these two small babies up to the back porch because she is unable to provide enough milk for them, and they are too small to compete with their 3 bigger siblings. They are both eating very well every two hours, however they have not had a bowel movement since we brought them in last night. Whenever we feed them we use a wet cotton ball to stimulate their bowels and they always pee, but no poopie. That worries me. I called my vet this morning and they said that it might take them awhile to poo since they are now on formula....it might take their bowels awhile to get used to it. I just hope they go soon cause I know that can be a problem.

Anyway, thanks for all your advice! It's gonna be a long road with these two kittens (if they survive...crossing fingers). We're already exhusted from feeding them every two hours and being up all night with them. And it's only been one day! Ahhh!
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» There has since been 3 posts. Last posting by Frisco, Aug 26 9:49 pm

Cat Health > Feral kittens found abandoned...question about feral mama kitty...
Gypsy

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Purred: Sat Aug 25, '12 12:06am PST 
One other thought I just had was maybe these kittens aren't Honeys kittens, but maybe they are another females kittens who Honey adopted. About 2 weeks ago I started smelling a dead animal smell in my bedroom. It got so bad I've been sleeping in my livingroom. I got under my house & tried to find the source, but couldn't find anything. The dead animal is obviously right under my bedroom. The smell is so strong I thought it either had to be a large animal or a large litter of kittens. For the past two weeks I figured Honey had had her babies under there & they all died. But now I'm wondering if some new stray pregnant female had those two small kittens under there & died. Maybe Honey, already having kittens, decided to adopt this dead cats orphaned babies? I realize this could just be wild speculation, but it's all so strange & such a mystery.
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» There has since been 8 posts. Last posting by Frisco, Aug 26 9:49 pm


Cat Health > Feral kittens found abandoned...question about feral mama kitty...

Gypsy

1261919
 
 
Purred: Fri Aug 24, '12 11:49pm PST 
We feed this feral cat (Honey) who we've failed time & time again to trap & spay. We trapped her mom & 4 siblings last year & got them all fixed, but Honey is too smart for her own good.

In the past year, Honey has had multiple litters. She always has them away from our property & all of her litters have either died or been killed b/c weeks after she gives birth she'll show back up on our propertyvwith nipples engourged & not leave until she gets pregnant again.

It's heartbreaking watching this poor cat go through having all these litters & then losing them. This has taken such a toll on her health. She is emaciated & I'm afraid she's got some horrible disease from breeding with all the feral tom cats that follow her everywhere. We feed her so much food but she is so thin. I think since she is constantly being nursed on by kittens, she is unable to gain much weight.

This afternoon we found two small kittens under a table on our back porch. They look around 2.5 weeks old. We figured Honey brought them. We watched these kittens all day & never saw Honey feed them. She did lay down near them & watched them for awhile. Later this evening we heard kittens crying under our porch. I climbed under there & to my astonishment, I saw Honey sitting with three kittens that appeared to be around 4 weeks old! These kittens are twice the size of the two we found on the porch.

I am so confused. The small kittens have to be Honeys kittens as well as the big ones. We have spayed every stray & feral female in our neighborhood & we are aware of all the cats who come onto our property. I'm thinking that these small kittens may be runts & because the other three are so large, Honey may have decided to abandon them in order to better care for the healthier ones. Honey is so thin I can't imagine she'd have enough milk to feed five kittens.

It's just so weird b/c the 2 small kittens don't even seem like they could possibly have been birn the same time these bigger ones were. The small ones ears are not even up & they are still mostly crawling. The three big ones have ears errect & they are walking easily. I am soooo confused!

Anyway, we have taken the 2 small kittens in & we've been feeding them kitten formula every 3 hrs. They have a healthy appetite. Is it possible for a female cat to get pregnant & then get pregnant again 2 weeks later, & have 2 litter 2 weeks apart? I don't think that's possible, but weirder things have happened!
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» There has since been 9 posts. Last posting by Frisco, Aug 26 9:49 pm


Cat Health > Obesity?!

Gypsy

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Purred: Fri Aug 17, '12 9:41pm PST 
I have two overweight (bordering on obese) cats. I feel you're frustration. Mimi needs help & fast. I don't mean to offend you, but from what you've said, it's obvious you're mom is not a suitable caretaker for cats. I would HIGHLY recommend you re-home Mimi asap. I know you love her & I'm sure you're hoping one day you can get her back living with you, but it's in her best interest if she was re-homed with someone who is farmiliar with caring for an obese cat & well educated in feline care. Has she been tested for thyroid issues? If not, I highly recommend it. Also, everyone is right...Mimi needs to be on a high protein, preferably grain-free wet food. Since your mom refuses to stop free-feeding the cheap dry food, Mimi is just going to get heavier & be at risk for obesity related issues until you get her out of your mom's care & into a proper environment. If you're willing to do that, reach out to shelters & rescues in your area or your mom's area & explain your situation & see if there is someone available to take on a special needs cat. Or try to find another family member or friend who might be willing to adopt or foster Mimi (of course make sure they are willing to do everything needed to treat Mimi's condition). Mimi really needs someone who has time to play with her...not only for exercise but because cats really need human interaction & positive attention.

Anyway, I wish you & Mimi the best & I hope for Mimi's sake that you can find a solution to these issues. Good luck to you both!
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Sootball , Aug 24 9:38 pm


Cat Health > I have to find a place that will not kill 3 feral kittens

Gypsy

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Purred: Fri Aug 17, '12 7:57pm PST 
I would contact as many shelters, rescues, Humane Societies, ASPCA's, etc that are within a 3 hr radius of your county and find out if they know of anyone taking barn cats. I don't know if there are a lot of barns in FL....I live in Ohio so there are plenty of farms up here. That's horrible that there is a ban on free roaming cats in your county. What do they do? Trap and euthanize ferals? Ugh. Makes me sick. Up here in Ohio we do T&R (Trap and Release). I volunteer for a rescue and we have trapped hundreds of ferals, fixed them, vaccinated them, and let them back loose where we found them. That's the best we can do for most of the ferals up here. Some we have found homes for as barn cats, but most have to live in the wild. It's a fighting battle. Good for you for doing what you can to help the ferals in your area. Good luck! Wish I could help more!
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Gypsy, Aug 17 7:57 pm

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