In case you missed it on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter yesterday, Mercury’s little brown tabby and white boy, the smallest of her litter, passed away yesterday afternoon. He seemed okay in the morning when I first went in, but a few hours later he seemed lethargic and his color wasn’t right. Nothing I tried helped, and he faded away very quickly. Mercury was wonderful with him, concerned and loving right to the end. Mercury and her remaining five kittens are doing just fine.
Fred buried the kitten underneath our big pecan tree near where the garden usually is.
We named him Kepler, after NASA’s Kepler Mission.
Niz left this quote on the Facebook post, and it’s lovely and also fitting – the mission was named after astronomer Johannes Kepler.
“The soul of the newly born baby is marked for life by the pattern of the stars at the moment it comes into the world, unconsciously remembers it, and remains sensitive to the return of configurations of a similar kind.”
— Johannes Kepler
Thank you all so much for your kind words and thoughts. I take comfort in knowing that Kepler was warm and safe for his entire life, far too short as it was.
If you’re interested in making a donation in his memory, I know that Forgotten Felines could certainly use your donations. There’s a Paypal donation link on their Petfinder page, or you can mail a check to Forgotten Felines, Inc., PO Box 60, Capshaw, AL 35742.
Fred took another look at the kittens yesterday, and it turns out – assuming he’s right this time – that one of the tabby boys is actually a girl, so we have four girls and one boy.
Here are their names, subject to change in the future if we realize someone was mis-sexed.
First, of course, Mercury.
And then the kittens (and the patches from the project/missions they were named after), in alphabetical order.
Several people have wondered whether this is Mercury’s first litter, so I thought I’d share this picture from around the time she was rescued.
That’s her in the upper part of the picture (this was in July, and look how big that belly already was!) They believe that the kittens in that picture were hers. So she’d had at least one, and given her age (1 1/2ish, I think?) it probably wasn’t her first litter. So there’s a good reason she’s such a calm and competent mother. Not her first time at the rodeo.
It’s her last time, though, that’s for sure!
2016: “Hey, lady. GIMME that camera, I gots to take a selfie!”
2015: Zuke has a think.
2014: Gilbert, taunting Jake.
2013: No entry.
2012: No entry.
2011: The Many Faces of Lucy Peppers.
2010: Maddy, then and now.
2009: Now, kitten by kitten, meet them all.
2008: Harbl airing commences.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: Rambo checks his fan mail.