Eyes are plinkin’ all over! Upper left is Pinochle, upper right is Slapjack. Lower left is Whist, and lower right is Fizzbin. Uno and Rummy (not pictured) have no desire to see the world around them yet. (These guys are right on schedule – eyes start opening around days 7-10, though that’s the average. Some kittens wait ’til 2 weeks to open their eyes, and I’ve had kittens with eyes as early as 4 days. I’ve even heard of kittens opening their eyes the day after they were born, so basically – whenever it happens is normal.) It’ll be another week or so before their ears are open and they can hear.
Timelapse video! Because why not? 5 minutes of kittens nursing compressed into 1 minute.
3 minutes of zen: the milk bar edition
Eyes are opening, but we’ve still got hissing (and a spit or two)! Can we assume we’ve got a particularly dramatic bunch of kittens this time around? I think we can!
Milk bar shenanigans (It’s not really all that shenanigan-y, but that was a good title.) Kittens at the milk bar doing what kittens do. I kind of love that Pinochle was nursing and Rummy nudged him and said “I’ll take over here. You move along now.” and he DID.
With the kittens napping, Canasta has some play time. She loves those Ping Pong balls!
Look at these sweet boys!! House panther Flynn was our foster Kohle back in 2012, and gray and white tuxie Hook was our foster Puff (Khaleesi’s son) back in 2013. They were BFFs pretty much immediately, and here they are nearly 8 (!!! I literally got out the calculator to double-check my math!) years later, still the best of friends. How cute is that? SO CUTE! (Thanks Selena!!)
It’s bath time for the babies! I love the way they howl when Canasta walks into the crate.
BREAKING NEWS: I just went into the kitten room to take pictures so I could report that everyone but Uno had open eyes – because as of two hours ago, Uno had zero open eyes. And yet, here she is. Eyes wide open all of a sudden! I guess she decided it was time. So 6 kittens, 12 eyes. Let the hijinks begin!
Yup, still hissin’. I believe at this point that they’re reacting to sound rather than smell (or possibly a combination of both). Kittens’ ear canals aren’t open until about 2 1/2 weeks (these guys are 1 1/2 weeks), but I think they hear gradually as their ears creak upward, rather than their hearing coming on all at once. I suspect they can hear the occasional muffled sounds of my baby talk (and I don’t blame them for hissing at that.)
Recent opinions from people on the internet (mostly Facebook) who appear to consider themselves experts indicate that I’m handling them both too much and not enough, and also that they’re clearly somehow defective and will be difficult to handle and probably never friendly. I predict that they just have an opinion and soon enough they’ll be climbing out of the crate and into my lap like they always have before, and despite all that pesky handling or criminal lack thereof, they’ll go on to be contributing members of society. Slapjack’s got a future on Broadway for SURE.
(Permanent resident) Charlie has taken to hanging out under the bird feeder. It’s time for me to move it or remove it completely, I guess (we have bird feeders in front of the house where the cats can’t get, so the birds and squirrels won’t have to go without.)
Our cats are allowed out into the back yard during the day because we have a cat fence around the back yard. Google “Purrfect Fence” for more information on cat fences. (That’s where we got ours, but I’m sure there are other kinds out there as well.)
Psst! That picture I posted earlier today of the kittens and their open eyes? Turns out I posted Rummy twice and left Uno out (and I swear, I was being so careful!) Here’s the correct picture. Uno’s eyes aren’t quite as big and round as Rummy’s yet… but give her a few days!
Throw back Thursday: This is one of my all-time favorite pics. I’ve shared it a million times and I’m sure I’ll share it a million more! From 2015, the summer we had several litters of bottle kittens in a row – these guys were the Squash Bugs (named after types of squash). Left to right: Zucchini, Calabash and Pattypan. Their sister Ambercup was in my lap having her bottle, and these little goobers were pretty sure they were DYING of starvation.
(It should go without saying BUT YOU KNOW HOW PEOPLE ARE: they got their bottles, they didn’t starve to death, and they got over the betrayal of having to wait their turn and eventually became upstanding members of society).
We’ve been letting (permanent resident) Charlie into the foster room for very brief periods of time. Canasta has been fine with having him in the room (she still smacks him, but she was doing that before she had the kittens) as long as he stays away from the crate where the kittens are. She was eating and
he was sniffing the box where the kittens have been a few times (it’s where I put them when I need to change out the pad in the crate), and so I took the opportunity to let him see a kitten up close VERY briefly. He wasn’t quite sure what to think about that.
Important discussions with Fizzbin (Canasta came over, all “What are they telling you? What’s going on?!”)
Most evenings before bed, Fred hangs out and reads. A varying number of permanent residents join him, and last night Khal and Jake had a snuggle, Newt looked disapproving, and Charlie curled up behind Fred’s legs. (Alice doesn’t like to hang around with all those boycats, and Dewey was under the bed avoiding the camera because he’s mean.) I don’t know where Archie was – probably on the screened-in back porch watching the raccoons go by.
The kittens are TWO weeks old and starting to look less like little blops of cute and more like kittens (next week they’ll actually look like miniature cats!) Here they are with their current weights – below is a list of their current weights with their birth weights in parentheses.
Uno: 10.3 oz (4.1)
Slapjack: 11.9 oz (4.8)
Pinochle: 10.6 (4.4)
Whist: 11 oz (4.3)
Rummy: 10.2 (4.1)
Fizzbin: 12.3 (4.8)
Everyone is continuing to gain weight nicely. This morning Canasta weighed 9 pounds, 7 oz. She’s still losing, but at a slower rate. She’s still getting 6 – 8 cans of food per day (most days it’s 8 cans) ; basically I bring her more canned food when I see that her plate is empty. She weighed 8 pounds when we got her back in January (remember how I thought we were going to have kittens by the end of January? LOL), I expect her weight will dip below that before the kittens are eating on their own.
I am sad to report that I didn’t see a single hiss this morning. I’ll likely see an occasional hiss as noises startle them, but for the most part that stage is over.
Belly up to the milk bar, kids.
Outtakes from the 2-week-old pictures. Spot the dramatic ones. (To be fair, I’m not sure Pinochle was entirely awake.) Someone mentioned recently that Fizzbin appears to be the laid-back one of the litter, and so far that is entirely true. I got like 10 pictures of her looking at me like this, no whining to be put down, no complaints, just her gazing at me like “Just let me know when it’s over, lady.”
Sitting on kittens. The kittens, just hanging out in the crate. Then along comes Canasta, who goes right in and sits on them. (It always makes me laugh when mother cats sit on their kittens, because the kittens yell “HEY! I’M RIGHT HERE!” and the mamas always look SO puzzled, like “Where’d YOU come from?!”)
Breakfast at the milk bar. They’re about to have to start nursing in shifts, I think!
Pinochle cleans his paw, and Rummy gets lost in a corner of the crate (Mama to the rescue!)
2020: No entry.
2019: You can only see 3 kitten heads, but I swear they’re all there.
2018: Chunky little muffins.
2017: “HEY! TRYIN’ TA SLEEP HERE, LADY!”
2016: Susie wonders if she’s flying.
2015: Well, shoot. I’ve got the box of #Stefan packed and ready to go, and I can’t remember who ordered it!
2014: Oh, Orlando. Those ears are something else!
2013: “ATTENTION, BABIES: Due to this behavior on the part of the humans, you will not be making an appearance for a long, long time.”
2012: “No, seriously. I think I’m gonna barf.”
2011: But he later confessed that he’d tried to pick Rufus up, and Rufus lost his mind, did some ninja moves, and Bob’s yer uncle, there was poop on the wall.
2010: Hoyt and Bill updates.
2009: No entry.
2008: No entry.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.