Tuesday, December 3, 2019

We are Foster Failures: Introducing the Ginger Prince

Once upon a time, there was a kid who loved cats. She already had a cat who she was obsessed with, but she also had a great memory, and she remembered that when she was very, very little, we used to foster kittens with our local Humane Society.

So she brought it up. A lot.

Whenever she brought it up, we always had a really great excuse. It was Nutcracker season, and we wouldn't be home enough. It was Girl Scout cookie season, and we wouldn't be home enough. The grandparents were coming to visit, and it would be too busy. We were planning a really big vacation, and we couldn't risk taking a litter and not having them up to their weight minimum before we had to leave.

But then we got home from that really big vacation, and the kid made some more really valid points, and she promised to be really responsible, and we didn't have anymore travel planned for a couple more months...

And so we got a litter of foster kittens. One litter. And if it worked out, we could maybe get another litter later in the year.

First pictures of Buttons, Jones, and Lionheart were difficult to obtain. They were more than half wild, and suffered quite a bit from the wiggles:

The only way that Syd could keep them still enough to weigh them on my postal scale was to pop them into a Tupperware:

Syd weighed them every day, and recorded their weights and general dispositions on a chart. When they wouldn't eat their nice kitten food and wouldn't gain weight, Syd convinced us to buy them chicken baby food. And then when we told her that we couldn't keep doing that (that stuff is something like a buck a jar!), Syd figured out how to take a baked chicken breast and blend it with water to make her own chicken baby food slurry for the kittens to eat.

Which they did until their little tummies were tight, and they thrived!

There is not a lot that's better than having a litter of kittens in your life--particularly if you're not the one taking care of them! Syd was impeccably diligent and responsible with their care, cleaning all the messes and stewarding their delicate health and socializing them so that they stopped being wild beasts and started being snuggly purr machines.

You might notice that in all of these photos, there's one foster kitten that seems to get the most coverage. Whereas Lionheart was the bravest, and Buttons was the sweetest, Jones is the ultimate Capital K Kitten, exactly what you think about when you think about what a puffy little ball of kitten fluff would be like.

It shouldn't have surprised us, then, that after a few weeks, Syd began negotiations to keep Jones. You can do this, of course, but then everyone knows that you're a Foster Failure. Negotiations went like this:

Three cats would be too many cats.
We used to have three cats, until Ballantine died. And we were totally going to adopt Tagalong after that, but then his owner miraculously found him.

Syd already has her own special cat.
True, but that beloved kitty came into our lives nine whole years ago. Will got to pick out her very own dog just a couple of years ago, and Syd didn't make a peep of protest.

Syd would have to do all the work to take care of a new pet. Nobody else is going to lift a finger to help.
Syd was already taking care of all three foster kittens all by herself, and that's even more work than taking care of just one healthy kitten.

Ultimately, the result was inevitable:

Syd finished out her run of getting three little kittens up to adoption weight (and weaning them off of eating only pureed chicken, which was the WAY harder job!), and we let the Humane Society know that we were going to be Foster Failures.

Here are Syd's three little kittens, happy and thriving!


And here are their Official Portraits. This is Lionheart:

This is Buttons:

And this is our Jones!

He's close to six months old now, and he's happy and wild, alternately wreaking destruction wherever he goes and stretching out to purr contentedly somewhere in his domain:

I didn't want him AT ALL, and yet I can't stand how much I love him.

1 comment:

Lora said...

His little pink nose!