So, on Friday you met Carlin. He’s estimated to be about 5 1/2 weeks old, which puts him at two weeks younger than Lucy’s Fools.
Carlin’s story is simple and sad and full of question marks, but ultimately Carlin is a lucky little guy. Someone found him in Tennessee, in the road with a dead sibling (hit by a car, I believe) lying nearby. He was alone, and he is so lucky that he was spotted and that the people who spotted him stopped. How did he end up on the road? Was he dumped? Did he wander off from somewhere? There’s no way to know.
Edited to add: Carlin was also tested the same day as the other kittens and his tests came back negative. Ordinarily I’d still keep him quarantined for 2 weeks, but he very much needs the other kittens around, not only to play with, but to help him learn his manners.
He went to the shelter on Wednesday and stayed there overnight, and on Thursday when I picked up Lucy’s kittens after they were tested, I picked Carlin up as well. When I got home with them all, I let them all out of their carriers and sat back to see what would happen.
There was a little bit of hissing and floofing, but overall it was pretty drama-free. The only one prone to acting like a drama queen was big baby Louis.
But even Louis got over himself after a little while.
After about an hour, the bigger kittens were treating Carlin like an annoying little brother. He was jumping on them and biting them, and they were fighting back, teaching him his manners. It took a couple of days, but finally they allowed him to snuggle with them at nap time, too.
He is just chock-full of personality, runs and plays and snuggles and purrs. As I mentioned, he’s two weeks younger than the other kittens, and the difference is kind of amazing. I was thinking of the Fools as being babies, but he’s such a baby compared to them. He’s still got that little baby voice, and that baby waddle and that round baby look.
Sharing the lap with Gilda and Skelton.
I’m not sure how noticeable it is to y’all in the pictures, but he’s missing about 1/4 of his tail. At the point where it would taper down to a point, it’s just gone. I don’t know if he was born that way or it happened after he was born, but I don’t feel any scar tissue there, and it doesn’t seem to bother him. It kind of adds to his charm, if you ask me.
If I had it to do over again, I think I should have caged him (in the kitten room) for the first few days, because he didn’t make it to the litter box in time and had several accidents that resulted in the loss of the ess scratcher (don’t cry for the kittens, there’s already another one on the way). After he had another accident in the corner of the room yesterday, I moved litter boxes from the closet to a couple of places in the room. Hopefully that’ll help – if not, I can always go to caging him for a couple of days, but I don’t really want to do that unless I have to.
Of course, I know y’all want to know what Lucy’s take on the whole situation is. I brought her home from her spay surgery Thursday evening, and we kept her in the bathroom overnight. Friday afternoon, we let her into the kitten room to see how she’d do. At first she was glad to see her babies, but then she caught scent of Carlin, and she had a lot of very rude things to say, not only to Carlin but also to her own kittens.
Fred, who has more patience than I do, started taking Lucy into the room for very short visits, bringing her back out if she got too overwrought. She calmed down a little more each time, though it was a toss-up whether she’d growl or chirrup at them when she walked into the room.
THEN, last night….
We’re still not to the point where Lucy will get unsupervised visits with them, but if things continue to go this well, I expect it’ll only be another day or so before she can hang out in there all the time, if she wants to.
Oh, and to answer the question asked on Thursday (which I didn’t see until Friday morning, or I would have included it in Friday’s post) – lactating cats will lactate as long as they’re willing to let their kittens nurse. Lucy is still producing plenty of milk, and seems inclined to let the kittens nurse, at least for now, so nurse they shall!
Video! In the first section, Carlin comes face to face with Louis, and in the second he has a brush with Rickles.
2014: No entry.
2013: Aslan’s all “You see what I put up with, here?”
2012: Rupert says hi.
2011: That look on her face epitomizes ::SIGH::, doesn’t it?
2010: Reacher and Bolitar: Brudderly Love.
2009: No entry.
2008: No entry.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: We have officially named the kittens.