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Am I crazy? I just took in a pregnant stray.

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
She looks and acts very close to delivery. I'm going to take her to the vet this week. She is very sweet and we will most likely keep her. I'll spay her asap too. My plan when I took her in was to "foster her and her kittens". The problem is, I'm so afraid I won't find acceptable homes for the kittens and that it will be heartbreaking to place them anyway. I get too attached.
And I have 4 resident indoor declawed cats who are comfortable, happy, and spoiled. When these kittens are gone and if I keep Veruca (that's what we're calling her) I hope it doesn't upset the balance of cat egos in my house.

I know it's all a challange that I can deal with, I just wasn't looking for this kind of committment. Somebody just had to go and tell me about this poor cat.

I know nothing about pregnant cats. I'm keeping her isolated in the guest suite until the kittens are weaned and hopefully placed. I placed towels on the closet floor and closed the door, leaving only enough space for her to go in and out. Is that sufficient or should I get her a shallow box?

help me! I'm so nervous about what I've gotten myself into!!!!!!!!
post #2 of 25
First off breath and understand how lucky she is to have you.... It will be hard for the kittens to go to new homes but know the reward you did just by giving the mom a safe place to have the kittens... You are not crazy just have a kind heart
post #3 of 25
That is great that you wil be taking her and her kittens in! And great that you may keep them all too. As long as you can handle it! That is really important that you spay her but please PLEASE do not declaw her!!! That is such a horrible and unnecessary mutilation. Just buy Soft Claws if it is your furniture you are worried about. And clawed cats can peacefully live with declawed cats. So please don't do it if you were planning to!
post #4 of 25
pxxie, if you're crazy than I'm crazy too. I took mine in 10 days ago thinking that she was going to deliver any day. She still hasn't popped and is actually about twice the size she was when I took her in.
post #5 of 25
You have done a great thing by taking in this cat and her unborn kittens you should be very proud of yourself.
post #6 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jen
That is great that you wil be taking her and her kittens in! And great that you may keep them all too. As long as you can handle it! That is really important that you spay her but please PLEASE do not declaw her!!! That is such a horrible and unnecessary mutilation. Just buy Soft Claws if it is your furniture you are worried about. And clawed cats can peacefully live with declawed cats. So please don't do it if you were planning to!
I'm not planning on it. I'm just worried about my resident cats being able to defend themselves if there is a squabble.
post #7 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnnasMom
pxxie, if you're crazy than I'm crazy too. I took mine in 10 days ago thinking that she was going to deliver any day. She still hasn't popped and is actually about twice the size she was when I took her in.
We can go throught this together. No change in Veruca yet. She is still eating like a pig. She keeps trying to get out of the room though! It makes it so hard to sneak in and visit her. I can't let her get out because of the other cats in my house.
post #8 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by pxxiegirl
I'm not planning on it. I'm just worried about my resident cats being able to defend themselves if there is a squabble.
Best thing is to keep the stray mom and your cats apart until mom has weaned the kittens and has been spayed. I think that if you work with a rescue group, they would be able to assist you in finding qualified homes.

Katie
post #9 of 25
I don't have any other pets in the house, so she is queen and free to roam about. I keep a constant eye on her, so I can get her to the master closet before she delivers. Initially, we were going to make her deliver in the garage, but decided our master closet was a better place for her. We have it all set up and its big enough to keep the litter box well away from her nest. I'm a stay at home mom of a 3 year old and 15 month old, so I'm lucky to be here all the time with her. She's great with my kids and my kids love her, but leave her alone to sleep.

I'm so glad I spotted her getting chased up a tree in the woods across the street! We have a great pet now!
post #10 of 25
Squabbles between cats aren't usually claws-out anyhow; only serious fights use claws. And if there's a serious fight, that's what the soft paws or clipped claws are for. Your declawed cats will be fine, especially since they (and I assume your stray once she weans the kittens) are all neutered. There's much less to fight about if no cat is really intent on fighting for females or territory.

At any rate, scratches from a cat fight usually hurt the cat much less than declaw wounds; and cats who are declawed will use biting in a fight; bites are more likely to get infected so you will be protecting your cats from your new cat's potential method of fighting if her claws are removed.

Seriously? I don't think cat fights are that big of a problem. There are lots of people here (post on the Behavior forum) who have clawed and declawed cats in the same household; and I've yet to hear of a problem that results from or is worsened by the lack of claws in some of the cats.

Whatever you do, don't declaw without first looking at ALL the other options. Putting your cat through a painful surgery for no good reason wouldn't be very kind.
post #11 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnnasMom
I don't have any other pets in the house, so she is queen and free to roam about. I keep a constant eye on her, so I can get her to the master closet before she delivers. Initially, we were going to make her deliver in the garage, but decided our master closet was a better place for her. We have it all set up and its big enough to keep the litter box well away from her nest. I'm a stay at home mom of a 3 year old and 15 month old, so I'm lucky to be here all the time with her. She's great with my kids and my kids love her, but leave her alone to sleep.

I'm so glad I spotted her getting chased up a tree in the woods across the street! We have a great pet now!
Cats are great pets! I started out with 1 just like you. I found Serendipity in the parking lot at my business. A year later I found Ashton. Actually, I was told he was a pregnant female by a vet! Turned out he was a neutered male with a diaphramatic hernia and probably wouldn't live long unless I got him surgery. $1500 later...he is healthy and my biggest baby! Next came Mallory. My husband fell for her when we were at Petco buying food. The AZ Humane Society had adoptions going on. At least she was already spayed. Shortly after that, I was told about a kitten who was hanging around a co-worker's house. I decided to foster her too. She turned out to be another spay/abortion. And since she was so sweet and worked my husband over, she is here to stay. Dot is her name and she is my husbands baby! Now there is Veruca. I think we will be keeping a kitten and Veruca. It's going to be difficult and expensive, but it's actually cheaper to get Veruca and the kittens fixed than to have Veruca spayed/aborted.

I also have a 7 year old human child! Tatum is her name.

Keep me posted throughout her gestation.
post #12 of 25
I think you are the best!
post #13 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by pxxiegirl
Cats are great pets! I started out with 1 just like you. I found Serendipity in the parking lot at my business. A year later I found Ashton. Actually, I was told he was a pregnant female by a vet! Turned out he was a neutered male with a diaphramatic hernia and probably wouldn't live long unless I got him surgery. $1500 later...he is healthy and my biggest baby! Next came Mallory. My husband fell for her when we were at Petco buying food. The AZ Humane Society had adoptions going on. At least she was already spayed. Shortly after that, I was told about a kitten who was hanging around a co-worker's house. I decided to foster her too. She turned out to be another spay/abortion. And since she was so sweet and worked my husband over, she is here to stay. Dot is her name and she is my husbands baby! Now there is Veruca. I think we will be keeping a kitten and Veruca. It's going to be difficult and expensive, but it's actually cheaper to get Veruca and the kittens fixed than to have Veruca spayed/aborted.

I also have a 7 year old human child! Tatum is her name.

Keep me posted throughout her gestation.
I think that cats "know" people who will take care of them....it's like the feral caretakers who spay/neuter all their colony cats and find others come to join the colony because they know they will be taken care of and fixed.
post #14 of 25
Yes, you are probably a little crazy. But that is how I got my Festus...I found her Mom at work, looking like she was ready to pop. By listing her in the lost and found in the paper, I got a few really weird calls. But I also got a call from the rescue agency I now foster for, and the rest is history.

Try calling some local rescues and see if they will help you. My rescue pays all the vet fees for the foster animals, until you decide to keep one...or two...or if you are like me, three. Once I adopted my 3, I pay their vet bills. But the best part is my agency shows the kittens at Petsmart on the weekends, so they have a great chance of being adopted. And they are really good at filtering out people who would not be good owners. And the kittens are spayed/neutered before adoption, so the cycle of unwanted kitties ends.

As for declawing, you will find lots of info on the health board. One thing I learned from my foster agency is that while it is unneccessary, it is usually tolerated ok by kittens. But to declaw an adult cat is truly cruel. So Veruca should definitely not be declawed.

All my kitties have their claws, but when they have little spats and fights, they don't hurt each other with them. In fact my current foster Sarabi is trying to meld into the family, by hissing and spitting at my kitties. She and my girl Festus have had a few slapping matches, with lots of hissing. But it all seems to be show...each one thinks they are the boss, and eventually they will work it out.
post #15 of 25
Hi everyone,
I'm new to this site and am very excited that I have found people who are going through the same things as me!
I myself have just been adopted by a very pregnant long-hair tortoise-shell kitty. She came to us about 5 days ago, starving and looking like she was ready to pop at any minute. She wouldn't come in at first but kept coming back to eat. Finally she decided to come in and she hasn't made a move for the door since.
HOWEVER, my hubby and I woke up this morning to get ready for work and found her in labour. After a little bit of panicking on my part, we managed to get her settled into the bathroom with blankets, food, water, and a container to lay in. She didn't like being in there too much, but was in too much pain to really protest. Now, I sit here at work worrying that everything is going to be alright. My concern is two-fold: Mom (we called her Dot or Dotty) was very very skinny when she showed up. So much so that she wouldn't stop eating. I'm worried that when I get home, the new babies will not survive (even though my hubby and I felt them kick and move around the other night) and second, my other two babies (Harley & Mellow) both fixed. The are not really getting along too well, but we thought it might be because Dot was just being protective of herself.
Any suggestions on what our next step should be? We are most certainly keeping Dot and she is SOSOSO getting fixed when she is healed up. The babies all have homes waiting, so that's not a problem. What do I do if I go home and they have not survived?

Thanks and say prayers.....
Krista
post #16 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by kskerry
Hi everyone,
I'm new to this site and am very excited that I have found people who are going through the same things as me!
I myself have just been adopted by a very pregnant long-hair tortoise-shell kitty. She came to us about 5 days ago, starving and looking like she was ready to pop at any minute. She wouldn't come in at first but kept coming back to eat. Finally she decided to come in and she hasn't made a move for the door since.
HOWEVER, my hubby and I woke up this morning to get ready for work and found her in labour. After a little bit of panicking on my part, we managed to get her settled into the bathroom with blankets, food, water, and a container to lay in. She didn't like being in there too much, but was in too much pain to really protest. Now, I sit here at work worrying that everything is going to be alright. My concern is two-fold: Mom (we called her Dot or Dotty) was very very skinny when she showed up. So much so that she wouldn't stop eating. I'm worried that when I get home, the new babies will not survive (even though my hubby and I felt them kick and move around the other night) and second, my other two babies (Harley & Mellow) both fixed. The are not really getting along too well, but we thought it might be because Dot was just being protective of herself.
Any suggestions on what our next step should be? We are most certainly keeping Dot and she is SOSOSO getting fixed when she is healed up. The babies all have homes waiting, so that's not a problem. What do I do if I go home and they have not survived?

Thanks and say prayers.....
Krista
Krista...welcome to TCS. First, given that Dot is a stray...I would keep her and your two cats apart until she has been checked over by a vet and given a clean bill of health. There are sicknesses such as URIs that can easily be transmitted between cats. Additionally, you want to make Dot as comfortable as possible, so best not to do any introductions until she has 1. weaned her kittens and 2. seen a vet for spaying. Also, remember to wash your hands between visiting Dot and her kittens and your own 2.

Hopefully when you come home you will find her nursing her kittens...but if you find that one or several have died...you need to remove them from the nest immediately.

As far as her being "skinny"...I would feed her high quality kitten food..both wet and dry.

Katie
post #17 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by TNR1
Krista...welcome to TCS. First, given that Dot is a stray...I would keep her and your two cats apart until she has been checked over by a vet and given a clean bill of health. There are sicknesses such as URIs that can easily be transmitted between cats. Additionally, you want to make Dot as comfortable as possible, so best not to do any introductions until she has 1. weaned her kittens and 2. seen a vet for spaying. Also, remember to wash your hands between visiting Dot and her kittens and your own 2.

Hopefully when you come home you will find her nursing her kittens...but if you find that one or several have died...you need to remove them from the nest immediately.

As far as her being "skinny"...I would feed her high quality kitten food..both wet and dry.

Katie



Thanks for the reply Katie. One other question, someone has told me that I should not handle the kittens right away as mom might not look after them if she smells something different on them. Is that correct?

Krista
post #18 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by kskerry
Thanks for the reply Katie. One other question, someone has told me that I should not handle the kittens right away as mom might not look after them if she smells something different on them. Is that correct?

Krista
Krista....given you found her as a stray, I would let mom be your guide....it would probably be best to wait a few days and allow mom to get settled. You can certainly then see about picking up 1 and see how she reacts. Just take it slowly and let her reactions be your guide.

Katie
post #19 of 25
pxx..i also took in a mama and I kept her and 2 of her kids...read my story on how I got them
http://www.thecatsite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=85389
post #20 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnTS71
pxx..i also took in a mama and I kept her and 2 of her kids...read my story on how I got them
http://www.thecatsite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=85389
John....your story is a great one to share and I hope you stick around to help others who take in pregnant strays.

Katie
post #21 of 25
Woot Woot, Dotty had 5 precious little babies. Well, actually it was 6 but one didn't develop. I'm heading home in 1/2 hour so will get more details then. Will let you all know tomorrow how they look and how mom is doing. Thanks everyone for your support.
post #22 of 25
Thread Starter 
Wow! It's great to be in company of other crazy cat saviors.

I've decided to let Veruca have her kittens (and not spay/abort). My crazy cat friend is going to take a kitten too. (She has 5 cats at home). So two kittens with homes so far. I also have been told about a place to have the cats all fixed later for a very low price. I don't know when they are coming though. It could be any day or 2 weeks for all I know. Veruca eats and drinks like a pig! And she is so vocal! She talks to me constantly when I visit her. I'll keep you all posted!
post #23 of 25
I am so jealous that Veruca and Dot have bothe delivered. I took in Ruby expecting her to have her kittens pretty much that instant. Now we are on day 13 and still no kittens in this house!
post #24 of 25
Dot's babies are here and I am in LOVE! Wow, I've never experienced kittens this new before. And Dot is such a good mom, very caring and loving. I could sit there and watch them all day. Mom needed some encouragement but I thinks he was just very tired. I'm taking pictures so I hope to have some to post later this week. To all the other surrogate moms who are waiting for kitty babies, be patient, it will happen, and when it does, be prepared to fall in love immediately.
post #25 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by kskerry
To all the other surrogate moms who are waiting for kitty babies, be patient, it will happen, and when it does, be prepared to fall in love immediately.
Absolutely! I know I am in love with our new babies! How adorable and wonderful! Congrats to all!!
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