Mommy or Mummy Extraordinaire!!! Yup! I think so!
Meet Sunny, born August 1st, 2010. Sunny was one of four kittens, some of whom have their pictures in previous posts. Sunny was never wrote about because..., we..., there didn't seem to be anything very interesting about her. She is a nice, but shy cat who never made waves or disturbances.
Her sister, Honey was much the same way. Honey, being a very pretty, flashy, dark ginger and white cat was adopted by a family wanting a kitten for their seven year old daughter, who fell in love immediately with her.
This summer Honey became pregnant and finally gave birth to four very attractive kittens on July 30th, 2011. They are the colourful ones in this photo.
Surprise, surprise, 10 days later Sunny gave birth to four rather plain kittens. They are the sand coloured ones in the photo.
Twelve days later, Honey went missing. She didn't run away. She loved her kittens far too much who were born in an outside building. She doted on her babies in a way that her mother never did for her. But we still don't know what happened.
The kittens starved for two days. He owners thought that Honey was close by, but the cries because constant and very loud. They came after me.
I didn't know what to do. I've never had much luck in helping kittens to survive. But SweetPea survived and had four month old kittens, one of whom was still nursing even though SweetPea had been neutered or spaded the month before.
I didn't want these kittens even though there is a better chance of them being adopted than Sunny's kittens. But what could I do? I have baby pet bottles here and kitten formula from the veterinarians. So I took them home determined to save the little ones for the sake of the little girl who had just lost her best friend.
I tried but the bottle nipple was hard and they were too young to understand and they cried. Sunny, who keeps her kittens under my computer desk, must have stressed out because before I knew it she was picking up a mouthful of fur and heading for our (hers and mine) bedroom.
Soon she had all eight kittens around her but not enough nipples were available for all the youngsters. Soon the scratching and crying began and I was scared that the Honey's two-week old kittens would hurt Sunny's four day old kittens who were losing the battle for nourishment.
After a lot of trial and error, a system has been worked out where I remove one of the litters to the car for a couple of hours, while the other feed and get cleaned (a necessary part of the kittens survival). This goes on around the clock, day and night. Honey's kittens are 20 days old today and are finally feeding with the bottles and formula before switching places with the younger kittens. Sunny cleans them and them feed some before falling into slumber.
Sunny's kittens are ten days old and are growing. their eyes are not yet opened but they sure are a vocal lot. Honey's kittens have adjusted to the switching and formula and the handling by inept hands and they too are growing. Sunny has the feline flu but it is only mild and not affecting her much more than serious bouts of sneezing so far. She has lost weight but seems to be gaining a bit back.
Yes! This new mother who didn't know how to raise her own litter has taken on two litters, eight kittens and is keeping them alive. The love, care and patience Sunny has for these kittens is completely stunning and must be seen to be believed.
She has help..., me, Maggie (the little girl) Kevin (Maggie's dad), SweetPea who spends an abnormal amount of time cleaning her grandchildren, their uncles Smurf and Smudge and their granddaddy, Bones, all who takes the time to stop and give them a lick now and then.
The local people, neighbours find it absolutely amazing that Sunny took strange kittens whom she had never met before and made them her own. This relatively plain kitten whom no one wanted because she didn't stand out as pretty suddenly became a heroin in her own right.
In reflecting back, I have been stunned by the care mother cats have given the young of others twice this year. The mother cat of a friend had four kittens and her kitten from a previous litter gave birth to three kittens. The two mother cats share responsibility for the growing kittens.
These cats are more civilized than many people whom I know!!!