Wednesday, June 9, 2010

A Temporary New Member To Our Family

Last Saturday, Tressa, Hailee, and Titus were out back playing on the swings and digging in the dirt, when apparently, their play time got interrupted by a small kitten taking refuge from the 108 degree heat.  Hailee, the animal lover that she is did not hesitate to pick up the kitten and bring it to me saying, "MOMMY!!!  I found a kitten!"

Well, I didn't hear Hailee at first.  So Tressa took it upon herself to come in ahead of Hailee to speak with me.  "Mom, Hailee found a kitty, and she is bringing it in the house."

"What?"  I said.  "Where?"

"Under the grill."  Tressa always feels pleased when she can be the one to inform anyone of breaking news.

I walked out into the kitchen, and sure enough.  Hailee had just walked in gently holding a cute black and white kitten.  However, the kitten was limp.  So I got closer to examine the poor little thing.  It had obviously been separated from its mamma, or been abandoned.  His eyes were sealed shut from puss, and he couldn't even meow.  You could feel his ribs, hips and spine sticking out prominently.  I immediately asked for a towel and a wash cloth. Stat.

Everyone was more than willing to comply.  I got out one of the suringes that you feed babies medicine with, and filled it with water.  I put it to the kitten's mouth, and it immediately started drinking it.  After drinking a tiny bit of water, the kitten couldn't seem to take any more.  So I then wetted the wash cloth and began gently softening the dried puss around the eyes and clearing it out.

The poor kitty finally was able to open both eyes.  It was so cute, and Tressa and Hailee were so taken by him.  They started calling him Benny.  The fun thing is that Titus (big dog) was just as taken with this kitten as was the girls.

Here is a little background.  Over the last week or so, we would let Titus out and he would run toward the same piece of fence every time.  I thought that was odd.  But, we soon realized that stray cats have their babies in our neighbor's wood piles.  I am talking enormous wood piles that pretty much take up their whole back yard!  I figured that another cat had babies again (this is not the first time this has happened).

The way that Titus acted toward this baby kitty was very protective.  He would stand over it, sniff it, and nudge it with his nose trying to get it up on its feet.  At first we were very nervous with him, and were right there just in case he might want to harm the kitten.  Can you blame us?  I have known many dogs that want to just kill them.  Later that day, Jason and the girls laid down for a small ciesta.  We put the kitten in our rom in a box by our bed.  Titus has a bed in the far corner of our room.  He did not sleep on it.  Instead, he slept right next to the kitten's box.

Over the next few days, I had been in contact with a friend (Marilyn Kukachka), and she had coached me on how to take care of it.  She had mentioned that the kitty was probably younger than I thought, and now I agree with her.  She instructed me on how to make a kitten formula, and Benny took to it really well.  It was so much fun to feed it to him like a baby.  He even seemed to be improving.  I just think that he finally felt safe.

We would sit on the floor by him, and he would blindly come toward us and climb up onto our laps, the girls included.  Hailee was especially fond of holding him.

The cutest moment was when the kitty was moving around in his box, and Titus stuck his head in there to sniff him.  The kitty was squinting out of a small portion of his eye lids (since they were pretty much sealed shut).  He looked right up at Titus and began purring.  It was very sweet.

The kitten really grew on us, but we knew that we could not keep him.  I have been wanting a cat for quite some time, but it is just not part of our lease, and we just can't afford to feed another mouth right now.  So unfortunately, we had to call the humane society to come and get him.  I realized that the longer we kept him, the harder it would be to get rid of him.  So I pray that they are able to take care of him, and get him better.  He would make a very sweet cat.

They came and picked him up yesterday, and as soon as I let Titus back inside upon their departure, he began sniffing around almost frantically looking for his new friend.  He seemed a little bit down for the rest of the day.  Since most of the time with Benny around, Titus would have a great big grin on his face with his tongue hanging out and panting happily.  I think Titus will miss the kitten the most.  Maybe he feels like he needed to protect the poor baby kitty.

I think this is what Benny would have looked like had he been healthy, and older.  I have some pictures of him, but they are on my phone.  I will get them off soon.  I have some pictures of Titus licking him.

That is what is new in New Mexico for now!

We are excitedly awaiting for Grandpa and Grandma Campbell to come for a visit next week!

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