Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sunday morning update and pictures

Dolce seems to be eating and drinking again, and the kittens continue to gain weight. They were all delightful with visitors coming in to see them yesterday during our housewarming party.

The promised pictures:

The kittens this morning.
The cream kitten on the right is Shayla, and the other cream one is Theodore. The spotted kitten is Zyra, and the one with the dark back is Evanee.

Dolce snuggling with Evanee as the other three nurse.

What a happy mama.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Dolce's medical update

After discovering the sneezing mama cat, I got some meds from the Humane Society. Dolce doesn't like to take them, but they do seem to be helping her with her congestion. However, I had noticed that she wasn't eating or drinking much (Delilia would go through a large bowl of water in a couple of days), nor was she using the litter box. When I tried pinching the skin between her shoulder blades, it looked to me like she was getting dehydrated. Big sigh. Back to the Humane society to pick up subcutaneous fluid treatment and appetite stimulant. Ashley suggested that I give her the fluids twice a day and check the kittens regularly for weight gain and signs of dehydration.

Getting Dolce to take the fluids was...challenging. She *hated* it. Luckily, my husband helped me hold her while giving her the treatment. And giving her the appetite stimulant pill was humorous. For anyone who hasn't read the very humorous "How to give a cat a pill in twenty easy steps" go here and read it ( Dolce was almost that bad. She has a nack of spitting it out of the side of her mouth. Luckily we don't have to give her another one until Monday.

The good news is that the kittens are all still gaining weight. Theodore is still the smallest at 4.7 oz, but the other three are now over 5 oz. each. And Shayla and Theodore are showing signs of looking like Siamese cats - their ears and tails are starting to darken a little. I will get more pics up today.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The last kitten has a name

Kya has decided to name the little black and white kitten Zyra. It is a different spelling of an italian name which means 'Dawning'.


When I went in to visit Dolce and kittens this morning, I was unpleasantly surprised to discover that she is sneezing - A LOT! Looks like she has an upper respiratory infection. Plus, it is now possible to see how painfully thin she is. Her hips stick out, and she weighs next to nothing. Poor thing. Luckily, the kittens are gaining weight at a great rate. Nearly all of them are near to doubling their birth weight.

I am planning to get some meds from the Humane Society today, and I will wash all the bedding she and the kittens are using. No point in giving the infection any advantages.

When we had Delilia, she seemed so capable of taking care of herself. Dolce is tugging at my heart strings much more. I find myself wanting to protect her and her babies.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Four out of five kittens named

After Pasha passed away, we decided we needed to name all the kittens. My husband decided to name the cream colored male kitten 'Theodore'. I have named the female cream colored kitten 'Shayla' which means 'fairy' in gaelic. Theona has named the little female black and white kitten with the clubbed back feet 'Evanee' which means 'young fighter'. We are waiting on Kya to name the black and white spotted female.

Here is a picture of Dolce with her first kitten.

Dolce with her four kittens.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Sad news

I took a look in on the kittens this morning, and the grey tabby had what I thought might be a loop of intestine herniated from the umbilical opening. I called the vet, who asked me to bring all the kittens and Dolce in for an exam. Sure enough, the one kitten had a birth defect, and the vet recommended that we not let her suffer, as there was no way to correct the problem. So I named her Pasha and held her as she passed away.

The other four kittens were examined, and look to be in good health. No cleft palate or any other obvious problems. The one kitten with the funny back paws has all the necessary joints and bones (according to the vet) so the deformity may be something s/he grows out of. Nonetheless, it doesn't seem to bother or impede the kitten at all.

The surviving four still don't have names. I will update as soon as we name them.

5 kittens in all

The final two kittens were born at 8:10 and 8:27, respectively. The first one weighs 2.8 oz, and is dark, possibly tabby. The last kitten weights only 2.4 oz, and is another cream colored one. I think all the cats have some form of polydactylism. I do have some concern about deformities - there are several kittens with paws that don't look entirely "normal", but they all seem to be able to move around just fine. They are all nursing and snuggling with Mama, who seems quite pleased with herself.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Kittens are arriving!!

We got home from doing some shopping this afternoon, and when my husband went in to visit Dolce, she was lying on the blankets under the shelves in the laundry room. She normally greets us at the door, trying to escape into the rest of the house. A little while later, I went in and lay down on the floor in front of her. She was lying on her side looking quite uncomfortable. It was quickly evident to me that she was in labor! She seemed to be comforted by me petting her head and stomach, so I kept her company. At 6:22 p.m., she delivered her first kitten - a little black and white one weighing 2.6 oz. The second kitten was born at 6:53 weighing 2.7 oz. The second kitten seems to have clubbed back feet, although s/he has no problem finding the nipple. Dolce has been wonderfully maternal, washing them off and nursing them. At 7:12, the third kitten was born, a cream colored beauty with a zig-zag tail and *6* fingers on the front paws. A Hemingway kitten! There is definitely at least one or two more kittens to come, based on the lumps in her belly, but she seems to be taking a break.

Friday, August 21, 2009

No babies yet...

Dolce seems quite content already, although she does seem uncomfortable being as round as she is. She loves having one of us visit with her - already she insists on climbing into my lap for a cuddle as soon as I sit down. She is also eating well, which I am glad to see. Despite her rounded tummy, the rest of her is very thin. I have also noticed that the very end of her tail is crooked, as if she broke it at some point. It doesn't seem to bother her, so I am guessing its an old injury.

She definately has some Siamese in her - her plaintif meow is testament to that. Although her mew is quite dainty, it seems to have that Siamese pierce to it. Hopefully we will not be regaled with yeowling as she delivers. Theona keeps asking, "Do you think she'll have the kittens soon?!" to which I can only say, "Well, she does seem pretty huge already..." Here's hoping it happens soon.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Dolce the snugglepuss

Dolce has settled in nicely. She is incredibly friendly and loves being in someones lap. She will rub her nose against my cheek and purr madly for as long as I will let her.

My husband is convinced that she is going to go into labor on Saturday morning, after the girls and I head off for our all-day excursion. I happen to think Dolce is capable of giving birth without any need for help, but I do understand his anxiety at being left to play reluctant midwife/doula to a cat.

Anyway, here are the promised pictures of our new little domina.

Showing Theona some love.

Here you can see how round her belly is, and how lovely her markings are.

Snuggled into Theona's arms.

The pics don't show how blue her eyes are, but I'm sure I will manage to get a picture of them eventually.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Here we go again

Today I got a call from Ashley at the Seattle Humane Society. She had another pregnant cat - did we want to foster again. I was up for it, but I wasn't sure about my husband, so I gave him a quick call. He said, "lets go for it!" so the girls and I headed down to the shelter to meet our new foster. We were introduced to a beautiful young kitty with bright blue eyes, siamese type markings, and a huge belly. The shelter staff had tentatively named her Leah, but the moment I saw her I thought, "Dolce".

We brought her home and let her out into the laundry room. She has familiarized herself with the space quickly - including finding the small space behind the dryer. Hopefully she will have more sense than to give birth back there. Luckily she comes out as soon as someone comes into the room. She is extremely friendly, rubbing her head against our hands and purring loudly. She seems quite happy to have people around her and she is eating already!

Pictures by the end of the evening!