Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Welcome To The Newest Family Members

For this story we need to go all the way back to March 10, 2022. It's the day we put our 16 year old female cat down. She was our hunter. She went after flies, bugs of any kind. She would sit and chitter at the birds as they flew by the window. Never once in our 16 years of owning these cats did we get a bad case of bugs, rodents, or critters. She left behind her (now) 16 1/2 year old brother, who back in the day chased down chipmunks and squirrels, but wasn't much of a hunter. He didn't prowl and protect the house like his sister did.

I find no coincidence in the fact that in August we discovered our first mouse in our house. Now, to be completely fair to the old cat, the kids left our back door open, as in wide open, many nights throughout the summer. I'm actually surprised we didn't have more than a mouse wander in! Since August, we've found mice off and on in the garage and a few in the kitchen. I told my husband we needed kittens. He wasn't convinced. Three weeks ago we captured a mouse under our sink and I told him if I heard another mouse at night we'd be getting kittens.

Well, I swear I heard another mouse scampering along the floor boards, so the weekend before Thanksgiving found us at the Animal Rescue League. I had spent the day before looking at cats and kittens on their website. Even Friday night I wasn't sure I was ready for another round of kittens, so I proposed we go to the ARL just to look. What's the harm in that? Somewhere between the drive there and our arrival, I decided each child needed their own cat. Then, somewhere between looking at cats and getting introduced to them, I chose the three smallest, youngest kittens in their rescue (at the time).

They were meowing, climbing, and unsure as we passed them back and forth. Before we even had the bill paid and the paperwork signed, the kids were discussing names. Now, our older cat is named Doc because he and his litter of sisters were found on a dock next to a river. However, our lab is named Zeus. The kids have been rooting for another puppy and had a list of Greek gods and goddesses names. By the time we reached home all three had their names: Flora (she's the really fluffy one) Goddess of plants, Thor (he's the striped one with spots) God of Thunder, Sky, and Agriculture, and Athena (the smallest, striped one and also the oldest of the three) Goddess of wisdom.

The two females happen to be in the same cage, but are not related at all. Thor was a few cages down, meowing his head off. As we've learned, he LOVES people and cuddles. Being in a cage was a form of torture for him. They range in ages from 11 weeks to 8 weeks. 

We had to use cardboard carriers because we left our cat carriers at home. That's how little we planned on bringing home kittens!

It's interesting to me that without really knowing the cats, the kids managed to pick cats similar to their personalities. Flora, Max's cat, likes to be left alone and is very calm. Thor, Elizabeth's cat, is (as the boys put it) "full of mood swings just like her;" he can go from cute and cuddly to full on terror in a matter of seconds. Athena, Harrison's cat, is known as the fuck around (nice, I know); she's the wild card, never knowing what she's going to throw at you. 

We got the kittens under the conditions that the kids take care of them. They've done a stellar job with the dog, feeding him, walking him daily. So far it's been smooth sailing with the kittens too. I do have to remind them to refill the food dishes and clean the litter twice a day, but there have been zero complaints about it.

We've had them just over a week and they're already perfect for us. And we've been mice free for three weeks and counting. I'm telling my family it's because I talked them into kittens.