Tuesday, 14 August 2012

The Kittens Are Here!

Well we certainly underestimated Cali's due date!  Hubby and I had thought by her size that kittens would be coming around the beginning of September so we were shocked when she delivered so early!

Our area got a lot of rain last week so we started leaving the bottom of our garage door up just a little bit so Cali could run in and out as she pleased.  At night we were closing it completely to keep her safe.  We didn't think the garage would be suitable when she had the kittens as we couldn't control the temperature and it's windowless so we decided we would put her in the office when the time came.  That way she was safe but we could keep the door shut and her safely away from our other pets.  At this point we're pretty convinced that she isn't carrying anything but we'd rather be safe than sorry.

Friday night the skies were finally clearing up and Cali was enjoying our front porch when Hubby and I left to go out for dinner and a movie.  He asked me if we should close her up in the garage for the night but it was still pretty early and I knew she'd be antsy to get some fresh air so I said to leave it open and we'd put her in the garage when we got home.  She hadn't left our house in 3 weeks so I wasn't concerned.

During the movie, we got another round of thunderstorms and when we came home, Cali wasn't in the garage.  We went around the neighbourhood looking for her but it was late and pouring rain so we thought she'd taken shelter somewhere and would come back in the morning.  Well it rained all day Saturday and even though we went looking for her, called her, left the garage opened a bit with soft food for her and kept checking to see if she had shown up, she didn't.  I was having panic attacks about the awful things that could have happened to her so to keep my mind off it, I began cleaning and organizing the office and upstairs closets.  The office always becomes my junk room - when I can't figure out where to put something it gets tossed in there.

By the end of the weekend I was finished my cleaning and there was still no sign of Cali.  After dinner Sunday night I told Hubby I wanted to take a drive around the neighbourhood to make sure she wasn't on the side of the road somewhere.  I was terrified to do it, but also wanted the peace of mind.  We were just about to get in the truck when up walks Cali, noticeably thinner.  She started rubbing up against our legs and purring like crazy so we led her in to the garage so she could have some food and water.

Then we debated on what to do.  The first thing we thought was - it's too early for her to have the kittens and if she did have them why haven't we been able to find them?  The next thing was that she didn't look like she'd given birth and her nipples looked normal.  Also she hadn't gotten big, just a little tubby which could have easily been explained by the proper meals she'd been getting.  And since she'd been gone for 48 hours it was possible if she didn't eat and had been roaming around she could have lost the weight easily.  Although it's rare she could have also had a false pregnancy or a miscarriage.

At first we didn't force her to stay but after about 4 hours of her sitting outside our house we decided to bring her in to the office.  We didn't think she would have left the kittens for so long if she'd had any and it was looking more and more like she hadn't.  We were thinking we should take advantage of the fact that she wasn't pregnant, bring her somewhere safe and call the vet to book her vaccinations and spay before she did end up pregnant.  We were both so glad to have her back and she was happy to be indoors.  She snuggled up to me on the bed, purring and fell asleep.

Then today after work, some neighbours across the street popped over to our house to tell us they had crying kittens in their backyard!  Hubby had previously told them about Cali and how we thought she was pregnant.  We ran upstairs and grabbed Cali, then brought her to their daughter's playhouse in their backyard where 3 beautiful kittens were squeaking!  I gently laid Cali beside them and they all snuggled in, eager to get the meal they'd missed in the last day while she purred away.  I have never felt so bad in my entire life but am so grateful that everything worked itself out.  After leaving her there for about an hour we decided the safest thing to do would be to bring them all back to our office.  Our neighbour lent us some gloves and we ran back home and got a large cardboard box to put everyone in.  We were nervous about touching the kittens but Cali has been great with us.  She watches what we do, but seems to know that we're there to help them and her.  She had a small litter that we are so grateful for as it means there will be less homes to find for them and that hopefully they will all be healthy and strong.

Hubby has never really believed in fate like I do but tonight he told me this has made him believe that everything happens for a reason.  I was meant to find Cali in those bushes that day so that she could find a good home and so that she got the nourishment she needed while she was pregnant.  He was meant to tell those neighbours in passing that she was pregnant so they knew who to come to when they found the kittens.  And although it seems less important than the miracle of birth I had that office ready at just the right moment to become a safe haven for a cat and her babies.

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