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Profile Information

Gender: Female
Hometown: Southeastern Wisconsin
Home country: USA
Current location: Waukesha County/Greater Milwaukee area
Member since: Fri Nov 19, 2004, 06:59 PM
Number of posts: 14,190

About Me

A Democrat living in a Republican stronghold.

Journal Archives

Lacey's kittens: five weeks old

(Been busy today but I'm finally getting to this weekly installment. See my journal for the entire series of posts and see how they have grown!)

This has been a big week for the kittens. At four weeks they began to learn to eat wet food from a dish and use the litter box. I started by feeding from a plastic spoon, then gradually led their faces down to the shallow dish with wet food in it. Now at five weeks they've got it down pretty well. Eating four small meals a day.

Litter box is coming along: sometimes they will go to it themselves, and sometimes I put them in to remind them. Mom is a good role model for what to do, but they pretty much go where they smell it's right to go. Forget shallow boxes though--mine like normal sized ones, maybe because they feel safer with the higher sides around them. They are good climbers and can get in and out okay.

We also had our first outing: I took them to the shelter for their first distemper shots. They were without their mom so were pretty scared, trembling in the unfamiliar surroundings. They relaxed when I held them though--so they know and trust me.

Mama cat went into heat on the day the kittens turned one month old! I'm told this is fairly common and the only thing to do is ignore it. She continues to be a good mom when in the kittens' room. When let out into the other rooms she will start to yowl. I hope it's over soon: supposed to last 7-10 days.

Playtime is getting very important. They are learning to climb, play with each other and with toys, and to bite Mama cat's tail. At four weeks they were walking, and now, at five weeks they are scampering.




Eating and washing themselves like the miniature cats they have become.

Still like to nurse and cuddle with Mama Lacey.

Lacey's kittens: four weeks old!

This is a landmark week for kittens. We will be introducing them to solid (wet) food, and the litter box. So far one has licked wet food off a spoon for me, and the other just accepted a taste. He'd rather try eating the kitty litter or newspapers. They're still nursing, of course, and with just two, mama cat has plenty of milk. They are both over a pound in weight today, fat and sassy.

In the last few days, both of them have learned to climb out of their box, but not always back in again. So I cut the side so that I can open it up all the way during the day, and close the side back up with duct tape overnight. That way they will stay cozy and together at night. The box is about 15 " high with the side up all the way, and that should hold them for a while. I had the front side folded down to about 9 " high, up until now, and that's the height a four week old can scale. But it helped the mom look out and make sure no danger was in the area. She's on the alert in case one of my cats might possibly get into the room-although they can't and won't ever.

I have a litter box set up but so far only a little digging and tasting and no action. But that will happen.

They were wrestling and when they saw the camera, stopped and stared. Perfect for getting a good photo.

Box with the front part open.

Mama has to get used to babies walking around the room.

They can walk but don't run or scamper yet. Still a bit wobbly.

Oh yes and they have names now! The black one (male) is Kona and the tabby (female) is Maui. We just had a vacation in Hawaii. They take after Mama around the eyes: they both have the rather deep-set eyes she has, that look a little squared off at the tops.


edited: I figured out how to post this video!

Lacey's kittens: three weeks old

Well, we lost the little sick kitten early on Monday morning. He was just too little to get so sick, and wasn't eating well and got weaker as the week wore on. Thankfully the other two are nursing well and seem okay other than a few sneezes. Mama is on Clavamox and they are gettting it in her milk. And actually if they get sick now, at three weeks, they can have their own meds by mouth if it becomes necessary.

Their eyes are open and they are toddling around inside the box and beginning to play with each other a little. I think we have one female and one male and will make a final decision on names pretty soon.

Family portrait

Tabby catches a snack while black one watches Mama eating.

Lacey's kittens: two weeks old

It's been a rough week. The mom came down with an upper respiratory infection (URI) and by Saturday we started her on an antibiotic. Then on Sunday one kitten got sick too and was so stuffy that she stopped nursing. (If they can't smell, they can't find the nipple no matter what you try.) So I have been feeding her kitten milk replacement formula since then. She's holding her own but hasn't grown like the other two--is pretty much the same weight as a week ago. But a friend is also fostering a mom and kittens who also got sick and they lost a few of the kittens, so I guess I should feel lucky. Her mama cat stopped eating so then had less milk and everything got much more complicated.

Yesterday tabby kitten number two started sneezing and getting congested. So far she is still nursing well--she's 14 days old rather than 9 like when the first one got sick. I have a steamer in the room, a heating pad, saline drops for their noses, ointment for their eyes, and the formula. I am getting up once every night to feed the first kitten, so I am feeding 11:30 p.m., 3:30 a.m., 7:30 a.m., and then every two or three hours during the day. So naturally I am looking forward to the little nose clearing up so she can get back to nursing on Mom. I think she is a female but am not sure at this point.

I will keep the mom on the antibiotic for another week because the kittens who are nursing will get some in the milk. That's what's sad about the first sick kitten--she is too little for any meds and isn't getting any in Mom's milk either. They can have meds at three weeks old, so if this goes on that long, that's what we'll do. A URI is caused by a virus, but research shows that antibiotics help lessen the severity of it.

The first photo shows the two that are nursing and the third sick one going up over Mom's back because she can't smell where the milk is. Second photo is of the three. Sick littlest one in the middle (tabby). The third photo is the other tabby who just started sneezing. She's bigger and has a little handlebar mustache pattern on her face. The third kitten is all black and is so far eating very well and has a round little tummy. You can't tell in these pictures but their eyes are halfway open now. Hopefully when they are better I can get some better pictures of their faces.

Lacey's kittens: one week old today!

My foster cat and her kittens. No names for the kittens yet until we are sure of their sexes. They weighed in at about 7 ounces each, which is probably double their birth weights. Their eyes are just beginning to hint at starting to open. I will try to update every Friday.

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