As many of you may already know, my daughter (otherwise known as teenager #1) pet-sits for our cat foster godmother.
I think it was on Monday, with my daughter scheduled to start pet sitting today, that Feline Urban Rescue and Rehab ended up with ten four-week old starving kittens who may or may not have distemper as three adult cats associated with them had mysteriously died.
They were taken to our cat foster godmother’s house and she texted teenager #1 to ask if she could handle syringe feeding them formula five times a day. And if we could take them home if needed.
Two kittens passed yesterday. When we arrived today to feed them two more were gone.
So we set to work with the syringe.
I helped clean up the dead kittens, which will be stored in a sealed plastic bag in the freezer until taken for cremation. Teenager #1 was willing to do it but her witchy empathy made it uncomfortable for her to touch the recently dead thing.
She explained it like feeling a black void. She says living trees feel “fuzzy” and that dead trees feel empty. But this is more intense because of the sentience of the animal.
The little gray kitten in this photo almost died in my daughter’s arms— but he hung on until we put him down with his siblings. We named him Rufus because he has been refusing to die. But I’m told from another FURR volunteer that he is gone now.
Although our foster cat godmother would probably chastise us for going so with creatures that will probably die, we named three others: Parker, Spunky and Extra Crunchy.
Parker kept climbing all over everything like a parcour athlete. Spunky tried to climb out of the playpen. And Extra Crunchy is cover with food and who knows what else so his/her fur is extra crunchy.
It’s going to be an emotionally draining next few days, but this is what happens when domestic animals aren’t properly cared for. Sometimes a rescue group is too late.
The adult cats in the house probably died of distemper and passed it to these kittens. So while the owner did not abuse or technically neglect his cats, a vet visit for vaccines and spaying/neutering could have prevented the suffering.