Even here where we’re used to running between multiple cats it was a challenge to know where to go first with all the new arrivals. We needed to check that Alice & Arnold were settling ok downstairs with the other cats, work out which of the 7 kits was which in the Squiggle/Raven family and make sure they were all eating for themselves or getting fed by one or other of the mummies, and then try to put anxious very pregnant Jette at her ease not least so if she needed help whilst giving birth we’d be able to get close to her.
Initially when I went into the kindergarten with Raven & Squiggle both mums would run at me all fluffed up and hissing. Their attempt to intimidate intruders worked to some extent … I was certainly wary. Very soon though they’d be purring and enjoying a snuggle, until I left the room and returned and we’d be back to fluffed up and growling. It took a couple of days until I could confidently identify each of the kittens and the mummies could equally confidently identify me and not need to growl when I approached.
Thankfully Dasher took over with helping Alice & Arnold. I’m sooo impressed with and grateful to him. He may be so anxious that he hides under the sink when anyone new comes to visit but he’s turned things around for these two little ones. Maybe it was because of his own fears that he was able to tune into theirs. They’ve very quickly come to adore him and the purring starts as soon as he comes in the room.
I was anxious about Jette .. on her own in the nursery. Of all of them she was the most stressed with the process of being caught and put in the carrier to come here. She hid at lot. First in the walk in cupboard in her room, then on a high shelf. I seriously hoped the high shelf wasn’t part of her birth plan. A couple of days after her arrival she was happy to take chicken from me. A day or two later she was very keen to have cuddles and I was less anxious about how we’d manage when the kits arrived.
Raven & Squiggle sorted their kits out. Despite only being biological mum to only 28% of the kittens, Squiggle appears to have done about 95% of the work.
Raven does help with washing and will investigate if any of the kits appears to be distressed, but mostly it seems to have been Squig who sorts them out. Despite still being heavily involved in mothering, Squiggle came back into season when the kits were only 6 weeks old, so if she wasn’t safely here there would be another litter of kittens on the way by now. Raven has since come into season too. Thankfully they’re both off to be neutered tomorrow.
There’s a bit of a feel of deja vu … it was only 6 weeks previously that Ailbhe and her 7 kittens arrived here, her kits born mid March, these 7 born end of April. There are many similarities …. not least in the amount of mess they create in their bedroom! Of course they’re all unique but the combined Raven/Squiggle family is now affectionately known as the Riggles thanks to their reluctance to pose for photos. Ailbhe’s kits were supermodels and gave us some lovely photos. This little gang are equally adorable … but models they are not 😉 Not yet 🙂