I got a small prefab wooden shelter for the feral outdoor cats (mamacat and kittens), so I could feed them in a more convenient location, and have the food sheltered from the rain.
Paladin helped me assemble it:
Here it is set up on our front steps:
The kittens investigated it quite quickly:
Which fascinated Paladin:
I fed them next to it last night, to make sure they found the food:
Then this morning inside the top level:
A quick update on the feral outdoor kittens. Here are mama-cat and kittens on our front steps (sorry for the window reflections):
A quick update on the surprise kittens: they are still living somewhere nearby, though have moved out from under the deck. Apparently mama-cat thought we were hanging around too much. But they still visit a few times every day, to eat the food we continue to put out for them, and often hang out around that area.
This blog isn’t about our pets, but in related news, for those who don’t follow me on Facebook — we recently adopted an indoor kitten, too. We actually adopted him the weekend before the kittens turned up, but weren’t able to bring him home until a few days later. Which is why we happened to have kitten food on hand, conveniently.
Meet Paladin, a 4-month-old boy:
On Wednesday morning, Jenn thought she saw a rat on our front steps. On closer inspection, it turned out to be a kitten — in fact four kittens!
Apparently a mother cat decided that under our steps was a nice place for them. She wasn’t wrong; there is a perfectly cat-sized space under the lower steps, with a larger sheltered space further back. The kittens look about four weeks old to us, so were likely born somewhere else, and moved in there recently.
We’ve been feeding the four kittens and their mother, and keeping an eye on them with a camera. We’ll try to socialize them, and get them fixed, to try to avoid the feral cycle. The best thing for them would to get them adopted by loving families, but if that doesn’t work out, we’d be okay with them remaining on our property as groundskeepers, to take care of mice etc around the homestead. We’ll see how that goes!
Here are three of them:
The mother initially brought them a mouse, but has been able to relax a bit more once she found our food:
Peeking, playing, eating; where the one is peeking out of is the cozy protected area where they are sleeping:
Our cat Pippin noticed the strange cat on the screen:
They may choose to move on, but if they stick around, we welcome them. It’s unexpected, and potentially costly and a hassle, but all part of homestead life.