Saturday, 23 October 2010

A Bit of a Break

When I first started fostering cats, it didn't have a huge impact on my cats. I had Fudge and Georgie who were very spoilt and it did them good to share with other cats. I had mainly looked after single grown cats at first and after the initial spats, they all seemed to play very nicely together. When I adopted Oblee, I had a short break from fostering as I wanted him to settle in before introducing any more cats. The first fostering I did after that was for a litter of kittens who had lost their mum. Oblee took charge and I think the kittens thought he was their mum for much of the time.

Oblee cleaning Bertie Kitten

Over time though, I started getting new mums with their kittens, and this changed things considerably. New mums are much more nervous about other cats being around, and I had to start sectioning my house off to a much greater degree to prevent all out wars erupting.
It happened so gradually that I didn't realise that my cats were starting to get shut out of my life more and more - living outside and upstairs while I was in the living room with the lodgers. When I let my cats into the living room, I had to make sure the fosters were shut in the dining room, and it became very difficult.

Marina and the Chocolate Babies

So now that Kipper and her kittens have gone back, and with it being the end of the kitten season, I have decided a break is a good idea. Within a few days of having the house to themselves, and being able to roam freely through it, my cats changed back to the loving cuddly cats they used to be.

Here's Georgie making himself comfortable.

Fudge settling down to watch a film with me.

And Oblee pretending to be asleep.

My house is peaceful for a change, my cats are happy and the break is doing us all a lot of good. It won't be long before the urge hits for me to start helping out again, but I'm going to try to make it to the New Year at least to give me time to get reacquainted with my own babies.

Time to Go

I managed to say goodbye with just a few tears this time. Kipper really is the best cat ever, but such high maintenance! If I didn't have cats of my own already, she is definitely the kind of cat I would want, but she needs your undivided and loyal attention at all times, and it can be very tiring! The kittens are now at the age where they stampede through the house constantly, with Kipper at their heels, and I have started to feel the urge for a little bit of silence in my house occasionally.
So when the RSPCA said they had managed to find a space for them, it was a mixed bag of dread at saying goodbye, joy at the thought of a bit of a break from kitten madness, and guilt at feeling that way.

Squishy had completely fooled me and at 7 weeks old I found to my astonishment that he was in fact a she! I've never found it particularly difficult to sex kittens, it has always seemed very obvious which sex they are, and when I read on websites about how difficult it can be I've often scoffed at it. No longer can I scoff as I was utterly convinced Squishy was a boy, and suddenly here in front of me was what was undeniably a little girl. As she already had a home lined up, I had to break the news to her new mum to be. Fortunately the news was greeted with joy as a little girl would have been their first choice. Phew!!

I had a quick check at Bubbles just in case I'd been wrong on both counts, but he is definitely a little boy, with the cheeky personality to suit.
They went back to the RSPCA at the end of September and I'm pleased that they all have new homes now. Squishy has been renamed Cassie and has her new mum wrapped round her little finger. I often cat sit for Cassie's new big sister, so am really pleased that I'll get to see Cassie too in the future. Bubbles and Kipper have new families also, and I eagerly await news of how they settle in.