2-22-18 Thursday

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Before we go into the story behind our new fosters – to make the story telling easier – first, I’ll tell you their names. The dilute torti mama is Kristi and was named after Olympic skater Kristi Yamaguchi. The black mama is Katia, named after Olympic skater Ekaterina Gordeeva. Their kittens will be named after Olympic athletes (not necessarily skaters), and I’ll lean toward older names, most likely. Suggestions are welcome!

So, as I mentioned yesterday, I was expecting to get pregnant dilute torti Kristi as my next foster. It turned out that Kristi wasn’t going to be so easy to catch, so plans were made to trap her as well as several other cats. Last Friday, while they were trying to trap Kristi, Brittany told me I should let her know if I knew anyone who wanted to take a second pregnant cat. It took me the better part of a second to tell her that if she thought they’d get along with each other, I’d take them both.

They weren’t able to catch Kristi on Friday, so resumed trapping on Monday. Very late Monday evening they trapped Katia, and at nearly midnight, Winnie delivered her to me. We took the carrier up to the foster room, I opened the door to the carrier, and Katia went WILD. She jumped up to get as high as possible, got up on the very top shelf of the built-in shelves, and then fell. She looked desperately for a safe place, and every time she caught sight of us or we moved or spoke, she growled. At one point, she was literally climbing the wall – I have never seen anything like it, it was awesome and scary.

Before Winnie left, we took down most of the big stuff on the shelves, Winnie disconnected a lamp I’d put on the top shelf, and I opened the door to the under-cabinet shelves so Katia could go in there to hide if she wanted to. Winnie left, and I kept checking on Katia via the Dropcam. After we left the room, she settled down and spent the next hour or so prowling the room, growling under her breath. Finally, she sat on the counter next to the basket of teddy bears, and about an hour later she climbed into the basket. When I checked on her a few hours later, it looked like there’d been a teddy bear explosion, with teddy bears all over the counter and floor. I guess she’d decided she needed more room!

I didn’t sleep well at all Monday night, thinking “Oh good lord, WHAT HAVE I DONE?!”

It’s possible I didn’t actually… MENTION to Fred that we were getting a second cat. My brilliant plan was to kind of sneak both cats into the room and then be like “SURPRISE!” when he realized there were two of them. Getting just Katia was certainly going to make sneaking a second cat into the house a problem.

When I got up Tuesday morning, I told him. He was less than pleased, but mostly resigned. He decided to go in and see Katia, and I just KNOW that he was expecting to waltz in there and have her climb into his lap, but nay. Katia wasn’t having it, and she growled at him to let him know.

I got word from Brittany that they were back out there attempting to trap Kristi, and that Kristi was being a pain in the butt. (It cracked me up when, the night before, Brittany told me that Kristi had caught a mouse and was walking around with it in her mouth meowing.)

They had to use a drop trap to finally get her (“What’s a drop trap, Robyn?” It’s a propped-up box or cage with a string attached; when the cat is fully under the box/cage, you yank the string, bringing the box/cage down to trap them), but I got word in early afternoon that she’d been caught, and Winnie was bringing her to me. I could hear Kristi’s voice as soon as Winnie opened the car door, and Kristi howled all the way up to the foster room. We let her out, and Kristi started exploring, singing the entire time.

I had taken everything off the shelves and removed the shelves themselves so she couldn’t get up high and possibly fall and hurt herself, but while she was interested in checking out the shelves – and in fact sat up there for an hour or so – she wasn’t wild or frantic the way Katia had been.

Katia, by the way, had crammed herself under this couch first thing in the morning, and didn’t seem to see any reason to leave her safe space.

I was gone for a couple of hours in the evening. Fred went into the room to hang out with Katia and Kristi, and reported that Kristi’s got a big mouth (which I knew) and Katia didn’t come out from under the couch, which didn’t surprise me. Neither of them had eaten anything, and I was starting to get a little worried about Katia, since she hadn’t eaten since I’d gotten her. Where they’d been living, the people had been feeding them people food – pasta, hot dogs, and chicken nuggets and french fries were apparently a favorite; they caught Kristi by baiting the trap with nuggets – and I told Fred that if they didn’t eat overnight, McNuggets would be the next thing on the menu. I left a plate of chicken baby food and ham, and a plate of canned cat food, and by yesterday morning they’d both eaten, and both plates were cleaned off.

Getting doors on those built-ins is going to be a priority as far as I’m concerned. A ceiling fan, too.

By the time I went to bed, Kristi was hanging out on top of this cabinet, and Katia was still under the cat couch.

When I woke up yesterday morning and checked the camera, I was pleased to see that both cats had been out exploring the room and hanging out together.

Oh, I forgot to mention up there: Kristi and Katia are not sisters – Katia is Kristi’s daughter. Kristi is 7 or 8 years old (I weep to think of how many kittens she’s birthed in that time) and Katia has had at least one litter of her own. Kristi’s last litter was 5 kittens, and Katia’s was 4, so I’m expecting something along those lines this time (though smaller litters would be better for us all!) They co-mothered their last litters, so I expect they’ll do the same this time.

Yesterday morning, Fred went in to visit the girls, and said that they had both crammed themselves under the cat couch. I told him to go ahead and take it out of the room. He did, and when I went in there a while later, Katia was behind this purple seat thing.

And Kristi was in the back of the birthin’ crate (don’t get excited, she wasn’t giving birth. I probably would have led with that.)

When I went in a few hours later, this adorableness was going on.

They stayed in the crate together like that until after dark, when they came out and started exploring again. I think it’s safe to say that Katia LOVES her mama, and Kristi is at least willing to put up with Katia. I like that they have each other as comfort, and I’m looking forward to seeing them co-mother.

So far I’ve only touched Kristi, and only briefly. They both looked so calm in the crate that I slowly reached in to pet her. She cringed a little and tolerated it, but the instant Katia realized what was going on, she had quite a lot of hissy words to say, so I didn’t push it. I did get a few slow-blink Eyes of Love from Kristi, so that’s promising.

To answer the question I’m sure many of you have: yes, we’ve been fooled before by “pregnant” cats who turned out to be fakers, but I believe they’re both pregnant. They’re not letting me get a close-up view of their bellies, but Kristi looks like she swallowed a beach ball, and Katia isn’t much smaller.


In case you wondered what Kristi’s voice sounds like. It really carries, as you can imagine.

YouTube link


The Sheriff thought we were done with this “fostering” nonsense.

“I’m the only Mama you need, lady.”


2017: Squirrel yoga.
2016: “LADY. Come on! You’re late for nap time!”
2015: No entry.
2014: And then Mariette grabbed up the Straw Cylinder and said “MINE.”
2013: “Halloooooo, laydeez!”
2012: Okay, drama queen, dial it back.
2011: Fingers crossed!
2010: No entry.
2009: I wish they didn’t get nervous and run back upstairs if I run into their general direction, like they think they’re in trouble.
2008: No entry.
2007: Smackdown at the Anderson Corral.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.



2-22-18 Thursday — 47 Comments

  1. I really hope Kristi can be socialized. Her life will be so much better. Looks promising with her. Katia … there is hope, too. Fred needs to work her magic and maybe seeing Kristi get all the good affection, may bring her around. Worst case, I hope they get adopted as barn cats vs just a TNR. They have better/safer lives and food!

    Kristi’s yowls made me smile this morning.
    Give the Sherriff a kiss from all of us. She will always be the #1 momma!

    P.S. Phoenix with her crown is on Cats Beavers and Ducks!

  2. Oh, this is going to be awesome!

    I hope Katia didn’t hurt herself or her babies when she fell off the shelf? I cringe too when I think about how many litters Mama Kristi has had in 8 years…

    Kara, you may need to deputize another cat to help you out at school crossings and such. There will be a lot of little feet running around soon.

  3. I fostered a mother, daughter, son trio. All different ages. Poor mama had kittens and 3-5 year old son decided he wanted to nurse. She tolerated it until I caught him. Mom’s put up with crap. And boys love their mamas.

  4. Kittens named after Olympic athletes? Okay!

    Many years ago my mom brought home a new kitten at Olympics time. At the time the great Kenyan runner Kip Keino was making headlines.

    Kip Keino … Kit Keino. It was settled, and Keino she was. (She was also an all-white cat, which tickled us.)

  5. it’s going to be very interesting to see the progression from feral to lovebugs, but if anyone can do it, you and Fred can

  6. Oh, please please please let there be a Torvill and Dean pair!! I checked, and the only foster “Dean” was Eddie Dean. No matter what, though, I am SO happy to soon see itteh bitteh kittehs here again!

  7. Great post today I love these mummies already can I suggest Torville and Dean as Olympic names?

  8. Also, I suggest Coe for Sebastion Coe, Bolt for Usain Bolt, Chaffee for Suzy “Chapstick” Chaffee, Frattiani for Linda Frattiani, Spitz for Mike Spitz, and Heiden for Eric Heiden. That makes me wonder… have you had a composers group? Meowzart, Hidin’, Chow-pan…

  9. Ohno for a kitten — after Apollo Ohno — would probably have a great double meaning.

    Other Winter Olympians: Dan Jansen and Bonnie Blair, any of the Jamaican or Nigerian bobsledders, Steve Holcomb, Sonja Henie…

  10. I’m just thrilled that someone else remembers Ekaterina. One of her kittens must be Daria. Looks like you’ll have your hands full. Remember Connie’s feral mother?

  11. Definitely, Bonnie Blair and Dan Jansen. They are from Wisconsin! Please please pretty please.

  12. Double trouble—nice!

    As for names, hm, Surya Bonaly’s a great name for a likely leaper, and Joan Benoit Samuelson was born in your (former) neck of the woods, so maybe “Benoit”? Franz Klammer? FloJo? Nadia Comaneci? Jesse Owens? Oh, I could go on. . . .

  13. Ha! If the mamas hadn’t liked each other, you would have had to renamed them Tonya and Nancy!! 😉

  14. So excited! So exciting!!! I know you had The Swimmers… and you didn’t specify Winter or Summer, so all inclusive Olympic athletes, no? My favorite (in terms of heart throbby looks – and his skating wasn’t bad either!) is Phillipe Candeloro… swoon! Then you have the Joyners – Florence Griffith Joyner (Flo Jo) and Jackie Joyner Kersee.. there’s also Nadia and Mary Lou, Shibutani Siblings & Dominique Moceanu (makes for great nicknames), Simone, ohhhhh you have a difficult task ahead of you and no shortage of creativity!!! Sooooo looking forward to this! So, to the girls… Settle down, realize your safe – from predators, from the weather, from starving, etc., – realize you’ve hit the Shangra La of abodes to bring your kits into this world, and get to growin’ those babies!

    • Oh yes please to Phillipe. I just rewatched his d’artagnan (sp?) On YouTube again. Magical

  15. Wow Katia sounds wonderfully fearsome! And then to see her sprawled upside down behind her mama like that, ha! I love her.

  16. Kitties!

    I’ll add Midori Ito to the mix and it’s always fun to ask “What would Brian Boitano do?”

  17. LOVE the names!!! Of course, I’m very fond of the “older” skaters 🙂
    I want to help donate some food with all of those babies coming.. do you all have an Amazon page or Chewy page??

  18. Dan Jansen for a boy kitty. He has the most compelling story of both heartbreak and triumph. My daughter wrote to him after his first Olympics (during which his beloved sister had, sadly, died), letting him know he was a champion, even without the medal. He was able to compete and win again.

  19. I am so glad this will be Kristi’s last litter. Katia’s too. Hopefully both will figure out the cushy life isn’t too bad. Maybe they need to speak to Khal or Stephan.

    You have so many great names to choose from! The first Olympics I remember was a winter games in France. This good looking skier named Jean Claude Killy won everything. I think my Mom thought he was kind of hot. LOL Some older figure skaters might be cute…Tenley Albright? Peggy Fleming? OMG. How about a kitten running around named Dick Buttons? Also, in the 70’s when the USSR was dominating in gymnastics, the captain for the women was named Ludmilla Tourischeva (not sure of spelling). I think it would be so cute to have a wee baby girl kitten named Ludmilla.

    OK I’ll shut up now. Thank you both for taking in these scared mom’s. Ya’ll are angels

  20. AWWWW!!!
    The Blinking Eyes of Love are just the beginning…the magic of warmth, shelter and regular food will work on those girls. Maybe been said: Let the games begin!
    So very ready for kittens…

  21. I know that “YIKES WHAT HAVE I DONE” feeling…one of my first feral mamas, when let out of carrier, literally climbed the walls. She moved too fast to follow but in seconds the curtains of both windows in the bathroom were on the floor and I was as terrified of her as she was of me. Fortunately she did calm down and I was able, with care, to keep bedding for babies and herself reasonably clean…and eventually, when it was time, get her back into a carrier to move to a barn home.

    I hope having Kristi around will help Katia calm down.

  22. I’ve met both Scott Hamilton and Kurt Browning (swoooooooon!). Both of them were very nice. You all may hate me now. 🙂

    Those were some impressive tortie yowls!

  23. I vote all figure skaters! You could even do Americans for Kristi’s kitties and Soviets/Russians for Katia’s. Plenty of names to choose from! Americans – Peggy Fleming, Dorothy Hamill, Nancy Kerrigan, Michelle Kwan, Tara Lipinski, Debi Thomas, Sasha Cohen, Brian Boitano, Scott Hamilton. Paul Wylie, Dick Button. Soviets/Russians – Alexander Fadeev, Viktor Petrenko, Evgeni Plushenko, Oksana Baiul, Ilia Kulik, Irina Rodnina, Artur Dmitriev.

    • Love this idea. Add to the list Johnny Weir, Todd Eldridge, peter Caruthers, michael weiss, Gracie gold, Jill trenary, kimmie meissner, kitty caruthers,

  24. Not being a smart aleck, but can you PROVE that Katia was underneath that couch?

    I’m not seeing any eyes from the pits of hell staring back at me, about to dispatch my soul to the ninth circle.

  25. quick question: the hubs just noticed that Lucky is missing her lower fang. Not sure when it happened. Do we need to take her to the vet?

  26. Great googly-moogly! What an adventure these girls are going to be! I wish you and them and the future kittens the best for it. Regarding names, hmm so many have been suggested and they are all good.
    Oksana Baiul, Katerina Witt, MaryLou Retton, Tara Lipinski, Usain Bolt, Picabo Street, there are too many to pick from!
    (and the image of little snowboarding kitties is now in my head-LOL!)