In March of last year, I decided to take in a pregnant mama cat. This situation was just supposed to be long enough for her to have her kittens, and until the kittens could be adopted out at six weeks old. It turns out, she was pretty much in labor when I picked her up, and the next day we were at the vet for a c-section. It was also my son’s 11th birthday (he was also born via c-section). Mama cat, who was now Molly, had six teeny weeny kitties. Within a few days, however, she was down to three teeny ones. Two little orange boys and a gray and white girl. We already had two cats of our own, about six months old at the time. They did not like having another female in the house, but they coped well enough. Molly, however, was a single-cat-house kind of cat. And she stunk. I think it was the type of food we gave her, and it took a couple of months to get her all balanced out, but in the meantime, she pooped and stunk constantly. Someone gave her the unflattering nickname of “Shitty Kitty”, and she wore it well.
My husband, the big ole softy that he is, adopted the big orange kitten and named him Strawberry. He is now 13 pounds and we call him Berry. Four weeks later, we got a call from the girl at the vet’s office, the same girl that helped take care of Molly’s kittens in those first few days. Someone had found three two-week-old kittens under their house and there was not a mother cat to be found. We introduced Molly and all the kittens, and suddenly Molly was a proud mother of six again. This lasted one week. I had the very unfortunate folly of accidentally stepping on one of the newest kitties, a pretty little boy I had fallen for and was calling Rusty. The doc did what she could to ease his pain, but the poor thing did not make it through the night.
His two sisters, Blue and Harley, however, thrived. And this foster mom became a little over-the-top in all manner of kitty safety. Once the kittens were all weaned and Molly was about done with all the other female cats hanging around the house, we found a new foster home for her. So we were down to seven cats. We soon adopted out Berry’s brother Peepers, and his sister, Lil Sister. And for a while, we were down to five cats.
When my mother and the kids came for the summer, my mom took in a stray. We called her Bright Eyes and had her spayed and got all her shots. She lived in our garage for about four months before disappearing. A little while after she showed up, we took in four more kittens. Lola, Archie, Kayn, and Ribbit. Ribbit was the first to get adopted, and then Lola. And soon, Ribbit was returned, because the adopters obviously were not cat people. That is the only reason I can fathom, as she is the sweetest cat in the world and now lives with us forever.
Unfortunately, Archie was hiding something from us. On his little toe, I spied a little bald spot. And so began our five-month battle with the all too infamous ringworm. If you have never had to deal with ringworm on your pets, your kids, or yourself, count yourself very, very fortunate indeed. Because ringworm is a scourge that is not easily conquered, as I was soon to discover. As soon as Archie was cured, he was adopted to a lovely couple with a Great Dane. I was going to keep Archie, but decided against it when all the stresses of fostering, working, going to school, and staying home alone while my husband was on the road, all mounted and I didn’t want any more. As soon as it was possible, Blue and Harley went into a cage at the pet store and they are being adopted this week.
So now we have our original pair, Loki (female) and Jubilee, and our big boy, Berry, and our teeny princess, Ribbit. Kayn is the only remaining foster. Since he only recently regained his freedom from the quarantine room, he will be back out on the adoption market as early as this weekend. I think the most cats I had at one time was eleven, but I have lost track. Now we are down to five, and soon just our four. I have no regrets fostering, but I think my next venture into fostering will have to wait until we have a bigger house, a fenced in yard, and maybe when I have finished school or can work from home. At any rate, that’s my kitty story.