|Snowy (Snowleopard), who died at age 16 before we came to Spain|
|Flipper, a good old cat|
Last summer we lost both our big cat Flipper to old age, and our cat Circles to an unfortunate set of circumstances (click here for their story, at the end of the post). Since we were caring for my sister’s cat, Smokey, we didn’t get kittens right away—Smokey has a bad-boy reputation and we didn’t want any kittenhood trauma. But once Smokey was safely home in California and we were done with our summer travels, the search for the perfect kitten began.
|Scary Smokey--you gotta watch him all the time|
We went to several people’s houses, where they were fostering kittens rescued from the street. The ones we liked were either female (we were looking for males) or already taken, and the rest were…well…scrawny little street cats. We found a great-looking Siamese at the pound, but when we took him out, he began growling and carrying on like a madman. No good.
|Typical little ugler jetty kitten|
|Better, but not quite what we wanted|
So I put out a message on Facebook to all our friends here, asking if they knew of kittens. Several messages came back quickly, but the first was from MariAngeles, my compañera de baile, who said she had three cute kittens in her garden!
|Where are these guys? This is more along the lines I thought about...but Todd wanted black and white, not Siamese|
|How about something like these little cuties?|
But when we arrived, ziiiiip! MariAngeles' kittens all disappeared into the woodpile. Obviously feral and completely unaccustomed to human contact, they were NOT what we wanted. MariAngeles is afraid of cats, and couldn’t go into her garden, and didn’t know what to do or who to call. I’d been in contact with all the cat people in the area, and so volunteered to capture them and get them out of her way.
|No wonder MariAngeles is afraid, those gatos salvajes are pretty scary|
Big mistake. I had to take apart the entire woodpile to find the three tiny monsters flattened out against a big piece of wood, making themselves as invisible as possible. I grabbed the black one by his scruff, and he turned into the Tasmanian Devil, a whirling biting scratching yowling hissing tornado. I flattened him onto a log and pinned him, shouting for Sasha to hand me SOMETHING!!! to put him in. We grabbed a flowerpot and trapped him in with a large tile.
|These kittens were FIERCE!|
Then the others started to move. I grabbed a second one and YOW! he bit my finger hard! Startled, I dropped him, blood dripping down my hand. “Mom, you’re BLEEDING!” said Tia. No kidding. All I could think about was my cousin Dana and her four-week battle with a massive infection from her own cat's bite.
|Snowy, our old cat, was incredibly patient...up to a point|
|We want Flipper back!!|
But after washing out the punctures, I went back to the woodpile. This time we had a box, and we trapped a second wild whirling dervish who screamed bloody murder when we caught him. The third was harder to find, but by now we had a system, and soon there were three wild-eyed demons peering at us and scrabbling at the transparent box sides. “Tape!” I cried, and we wrapped the lid of the box on tight. All I could think of was what a disaster it would be if these three wildcats got loose inside the Lion Car on the way home.
|Uh-oh...what have we done?|
We put the little monsters in our rabbit cage, and I went to call the pound. “Wait!” said Todd. “These are free, right?” Yep. “They are black and white, just what we wanted?” Yep. “The black bad-luck one we can give away?” Yep. “Let’s tame them!” Suddenly Todd’s reluctance to have any new cats flew out the window, and a project was born.
|A BIG project wrapped in little furry bundles|
|Seeing double-trouble: Chloe and Chase|
Click here to see the first video of the new scared ferocious kittens.
And so we have new kittens. Chloe, the female (yes, we can’t bear to give her away, she’s so sweet) was the first to gentle, and is the first to purr and run to you when she’s hungry. Tia has claimed her.
|Tia and Chloe|
|Chloe must have some ragdoll in her, she is so floppy|
Chase, a little ruffian whose tail curls up over his back when he plays, is loved dearly by Sasha, and even though he’s a rascal and somewhat squirmy at times, he loves to sleep with her.
|Funny Chase and funny Sasha|
And Cosmos, the bad-luck black kitten, turned out to have a saving-grace white star on his throat, and Todd claimed him for his own. So now we have THREE cats instead of two, and who KNOWS how we’ll get them all home when we return to California next September!
But in the meantime, our kitten-taming project is going swimmingly, and it’s a joy to watch them play and grow like little weeds. Here’s to cat-love!
Click here to see the kittens play now!