A whole family of cats showed up in the carport: Mamacat, Dad and three kittens. I don’t know how these animals find a safe haven like this. Someone once told me knowledgeable cats make an esoteric sign on the wall – like the hobos used to mark a house which was good for a meal or a handout so the rest of the fraternity could find a soft touch. Could be, because needy cats have shown up with regularity here.
Mama and Papa are striped tabbies – Mama svelte again after weaning the kits; Papa stocky with a big head and prominent testes; two orange and one lilac colored offspring. Papa sports a canvas collar and sometimes touches his nose to my fingers and allows me to briefly stroke his back – which enabled me to determine that his collar is not too tight. Mama is extremely shy.
An interesting pattern developed: the parents would show up in the morning and in the evening, leaving the kittens here by themselves during the day. When Papa arrived, the kittens would rub up against him. Mama sometimes sampled some of the food provided, but neither parent seemed to be particularly hungry — unlike the kittens, who gather near the door in the carport and stare until I make the appropriate response. Bring out more food! Sometimes one of them gives a long, drawn-out cry when they spy me (no doubt to make sure I know what they want).
Now that the kittens are larger, the parents have pretty much quit coming around. I’ve seen the kittens in the yard carrying prey that they have caught, too.
On their own during the day, the kittens play, tussling and tumbling with one another when they’re not napping. When I appear, they tend to flee, but they are getting more and more comfortable with a big human nearby. At feeding time I’m now able to stand right over their tray and can reach down to pet them. Gaining their trust is a work in progress.
When they are able to be handled they will be treated for fleas and ear mites. They have already been wormed several times. Eventually they will go to the vet to be de-sexed. They sure are cute! (Photos coming soon.)
We are looking for responsible people to adopt them. If we can’t place them in a good warm home or barn, we’ll provide an insulated house for the winter months, as there are already too many cats inside to bring them in.