Today, I was able to make the trip to the nearest Walmart, primarily to pick up some kibble for the outside cats. There was a pet store nearby, where I was able to pick this up.
What they didn’t have in stock was cat milk or kitten formula mix. I did my shopping at Walmart, then took a different route home to swing by our vet. They had only 2 little cans of kitten formula left, so I got one of them – expensive stuff!!! – and headed home.
Once everything was brought inside, I quickly set up a nest for them in a bin in my office, then went looking for the babies.
They were gone.
The cat house was completely empty.
On the one hand, this is good news. The bitties were not abandoned, for all that we never saw them with a mama. She tried to bring them somewhere safe, but there is just too much activity near the house. The mother is doing her best to take care of her teeny babies.
On the other hand, their chances of survival just dropped significantly. Not just from the elements, but the farther they are from the house, the greater the risk that a predator will find them. Once the mamas start bringing them back to the house for kibble, the kittens tend to stay of their own volition. That’s why we have a yard full of kittens right now, but hardly any mamas. Rosencrantz is really the only one that hangs around, and she’s the oldest of the mamas still outside, now that Butterscotch and Beep Beep are inside.
I’ve just been in contact with the cat lady. Unfortunately, she had not had a chance to look at the emails I’d sent her. There’s a reason she prefers texting! She is currently caring for a 3 week old kitten found to the north of us; the mama had been killed by a coyote, and the rest of the litter died of exposure, so there’s just one lonely baby left. She has been dealing with her own health issues, and just got the go-ahead for major surgery, so things are going to be pretty wild for her for the next while! If we do find any abandoned kitties, though, she told me to let her know right away, and she’ll come get them.
Meanwhile, we now have the nursing kit and formula on hand, just in case.
I really hope things work out well for the bitties!!