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HELP PLEASE - Question About Rescued Kittens

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
My sister has a few strays that have made their way to her house. She has already taken three into her house and had them spayed/neutered, vet checked, vaccinated, etc and she takes great care of them (they are the chunkiest cats I have ever seen!). Any how, three more females (who all had kittens) have decided to live in two of the sheds on her property. My sister of course feeds them and plans to have them spayed as soon as she can afford it but working at Mc Donalds doesn't provide much extra money.

Any how, I am just starting to show and breed Persians and Himalayans. I have done my research and have purchased some amazing cats from terrific blood lines and reputable breeders. I also have many breeder friends/mentors to answer any questions/concerns I may have. So please, no lectures. I have dreamed about this for a long time and I feel I am doing everything right.

I use to do the odd rescue and my heart just breaks when I see animals in need. This is how I could myself into this MESS!!

Two of the mother cats were raising three (3-4 week old) kittens together. I feel that one of the mothers lost a litter and then began helping the other mother raise her kittens. Well, the mother cats decided to move the kittens from under the shed to a ledge in the shed. Trouble being, the kittens were falling from the ledge and out of a hole in the back of the shed. Each time my sister moved the kittens the mothers brought them back there!

One of the kittens fell and started making strange noises while my mom was pet sitting for my sister who was away. So I drove the 30 minutes to pick the kittens up and the 30 minutes back and took them in to see my vet (who is amazing!!). She fit me in even though they were over booked.

The kitten wasn't damaged from falling however, all three of them had upper respitory infections. The vet also though one of them had a blockage due to a large belly. So, all three kittens are on Chlor Palm twice a day for seven days and the one kitten was given an enema. They have also been de-wormed with Panacur. The kitten with the bloated belly is STILL bloated?? I have been doing my best to take care of them. They are given KMR every couple of hours threw syringe and wet kitten food threw syringe. I also leave water, Royal Canin Baby Kitten and a plate of wet kitten food down for them to nibble on in between feedings. They are starting to eat by them selves now.

A new concern of mine is that one of the kittens is losing hair behind her ears??? I have no idea what this is from. They don't have ear mites and from what I can tell, no fleas.

This is exhausting for me as I have three children (5 months, 2 years and 5 years) and my show kitties and my other pets and now three strays.

I am a nervous wreck because God only knows what these kittens are carrying and even though I am being as careful as possible with having the kittens caged in the garage (with a heater) and by having a set of clothes to wear to see the kittens, washing and sanitizeing I am concerned that my pets are going to become ill or contract a disease from the kittens.

My sister works days and her boyfriend wouldn't be able to care for them properly (he admits this). All of the shelters are full. I don't know what to do and I really can't afford to spend any more money taking them back to the vets to find out about the bloated belly and hair loss.

I am at a loss. I am not sure what to do and more then any thing I don't want my healthy pets to get sick. I don't know what the hair loss is from and I don't want my pets to get any kind of skin infection or mite.

post #2 of 6
Could it be ringworm?
Just a guess.
Good for you, though, doing what you can for those babies.
post #3 of 6
Whoa! You have a lot on your plate. Small children require so much time, and small kittens too!

I think you're a lovely person for helping out these kittens. I would call around different vets offices and humane societies to see if you can get any financial help toward getting the kitties checked out. In my area we have "Popco" and "Actors and Others" who pledge moneys to help with vet costs. There might be something similar in your area.
post #4 of 6
I wonder if it might be ringworm also. The bloated belly may be in part because of the worms.

Is there any way to make the shed safe and take them back to the mom cat. Maybe block the holes, remove access to the shelf and close the mom cats and kittens in the shed with litter box and food. Like making the shed a giant kennel until the kittens are older. It would help to have the mom cats all ready to take for spay.

Hoping things get better soon.
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
I was also concerned that it was ring worm. I am praying not because I have other animals and no matter how safe I try to be I still worry that they will become sick.

The mother cats are now gone because a Raccoon decided to take over their spot. There is no door on that shed unfortunately. They will obviously get rid of the raccoon however that doesn't mean the mothers will go back there and even if they did, after the kittens have been away from them for 3 days they probably won't take them back. The vet suggested that they not be put back with their mothers due to the fact that they have an URI that needs treatment which probably means the mothers also have one.

I can deal with the URI but I am terrified of ring worm. I cannot take the chance that my show cats (long haired) contract ring worm- that would be the end of their show careers.

Sigh... life sucks sometimes!

Thanks for all of your advice and kind words.
post #6 of 6
Don't be terrified - it is possible to get and keep the ringworm under control. Vaccum everything frequently and toss the bag out ASAP. Keep the ringworm kitties separate from everybody else. When you handle them, change your clothes immediately and throw them in the washer. Also wash your hands and arms before picking anyone else up.

If it is ringworm, use a prescription anti-fungal cream - there are several fungi that cause ringworm, so the vet will know best which cream to prescribe after testing. There is also an oral medication but its hard of their livers and should be used only in extreme cases.

Bathing them in anti-fungal shampoos helps and there is also a prescription dip - lime sulfur. It stinks to high heaven (like rotten eggs) and dyes the cat's fur (and your hands and clothes) a hideous yellow. But it also works.

Using all of these should help you keep it under control. The spores can last for up to 2 years. That's why vacuuming is good and sweeping is bad - that just sends the spores out into the air.

Remember, the spores are probably on your feet everytime you come in from outside. Kittens and immune system compromised cats are just a little more susceptible to the fungus.

Hang in there and don't panic. And bless you for helping these kitties.
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