Damy, our stray cat transport guy, was returning a cat to Jurong West yesterday, when he heard kittens meowing at Block 274C. Being like most cat-lovers he immediately went to investigate the meowing and traced it to a box in the void deck. Inside were 3 kittens.
They were obviously abandoned because all the strays there are neutered. Also, the person who abandoned them actually put food inside – an opened tin of canned food. But the kittens were too young to eat on their own. The box was filthy and so were the kittens. They were meowing in hunger and from missing their mother.
Damy tried calling as many folks he knew that might be willing to foster the 3 babies. No space or resources were available. He called us, and we thought – if they needed milk, maybe Mary Lou could foster them. Her own babies are 2+ weeks old now. He brought the kittens to us late last night en route to a TNRM job he had to do.
However, when the kittens came to us, we knew that Mary Lou couldn’t and shouldn’t foster them. Firstly, 2 of them were exhibiting flu’ symptoms, and 1 of them was sick enough that her third eyelid was showing. Secondly, they were badly flea-infested. Thirdly, they were older than Mary Lou’s kittens, their teeth had already bud, including the canines. They were at least 3 weeks old, and possibly older, perhaps about 24 days old or so. We were most concerned about the flu’ because we didn’t want 7 cats in a pen all getting flu’ together, and causing risk of death.
Thankfully, Wine and Seven finally went to their new home yesterday evening, so we had one pen free. We set about washing and disinfecting the pen so the 3 newbies could stay in there.
Before anything else, we had to de-flea the 3 kittens, a top priority in any cattery, shelter, foster home or multi-cat household! They are too young for most flea treatments, so we resorted to simple flea shampoo – we are using Troy (pretty good too, really immobilises the fleas) and picking them out one by one. Then we dusted them with flea powder and sprayed flea spray on their surroundings. We kept them in a holding carrier covered with a blanket doused with flea spray while we prepared their pen and got all the cats in the house, our own and the fosters, on Revolution immediately. It was a long night.
We then set about hand-feeding the 3 kittens with pet milk replacement and supplements of vitamin C, Lysinium Max (vitamin B and lysine), and CoQ10. We also added glucose to their milk because they were dehydrated. They drank well and hungrily – a good sign. We also applied Ilium Opticin on their inflamed, teary eyes.
Here they are after their feeding session earlier – boosted with echinecea for immunity and to fight flu’ – Wes, Joey and Junie. Wes is probably the only boy and biggest sized. He is also the only one that didn’t show flu’ symptoms, and is very vocal! Joey, likely female, was having inflamed, red eyes. She is also the greediest! Junie, the most worrisome, is the runt, was the most dehydrated, and was showing third eyelid.
|Wes, tabby/white boy|
|Joey, tabby/white girl|
|Junie, tabby – possibly torbie – girl|
Their health is already showing signs of improvement today. Joey’s eyes are no longer red, and all are very ambulant and eager to totter around exploring. Junie is still a bit dehydrated but her third eyelid is receding.
We tried getting them to learn to lap milk from a dish, and so far only Joey has tried it successfully, given that she is the greediest she is probably the food-smartest! But meanwhile, we will be hand-feeding them every 6 hours or so as their current age dictates. They don’t know how to use the litter tray yet, eliminating instead directly on the pee-pad and blankets, but we rub their behinds with a baby wipe while sitting them in the tray so that one day soon they will get it. So far we haven’t yet spotted any fleas we might have missed last night.
Everything is still resting on a hinge for them, being orphaned, so we are hoping for constant improvement, especially for Junie – runts always have it bad. We will be trying our utmost in rehabilitating them till they are ready to be adopted!