Those of you who have read my blog the past several months know that back in January a stray cat came to my mother’s house and two months later had a litter of six kittens. My sister and I became totally enamored, first with the mommy, and then with the tiny creatures as we watched them grow and flourish. We were so very sad when one morning I found one of them dead from unknown causes when several weeks old.
When the remaining five were weaned, we had the mommy cat, whom we named Sox, “fixed.” From the day she came home from the veterinarian’s, she has been adopted by me as a house cat, and I have from time to time reported here on her progress with my two dogs. All continues to be well on that front.
The five kittens have lived happily at the barn, being nurtured and loved each and every day. We decided we would keep all of them because it was such happiness to see all of them together. They were so attached to each other and it has been a joy to watch them.
We gave the male cats the names of Carl, Gurtie and Murtie (we “thought" the latter two were females and opted not to change their names after the vet told us differently!); and the females the names of Myrtle and Blackie (she was the only black one among them; all others are tabbies just like their mommy).
When they were four months old, they, too, made a trip to the vet’s office for neutering and spaying. And I know you read here of their antics when I kept them inside my house for three days while they recovered from their surgeries before I returned them to the barn.
I am saddened today to report that two, Blackie and Gertie, have disappeared. While I was away this past weekend, my husband fed them and all was well until those two weren’t there on late Sunday afternoon. We were very hopeful they would be there Monday morning, but alas, they were not. And still are not.
I have walked the fields, driven the road and called to them for many hours these past three days, but to no avail. Did they wander off? Did some animal scare them off? Are they lost and trying to find their way home? These are questions we don't have answers to.
A heavy heart has been the order of the past three days. Each time I go to the barn, I have high hopes I will see them there. But hope is beginning to fade.
I know that cats can be strange and wander away. We have heard the stories of cats finding their way home across many miles. So a small amount of hope remains.
Sharing below some of the photos of the kitties.
|Dear Blackie, always the odd one in her behavior.|
|The kitties at about two months old. Cutest kittens I've ever known.|
|The kitties do love their milk! Carl and Gurtie are IDENTICAL in looks; Carl is just a bit heavier than Gurtie but we can only tell that by picking up each and comparing them. We think it's the heavier one, Carl, we still have with us.|
|In the cat carrier after their arrival at the veterinarian's office|
|Brother and sister love! Blackie is just a blur!|
|Precious Blackie, we miss you.|
|Having fun on my umbrella.|
|Murtie climbing into my lap.|
|Two kittens climbing through my fence. The others aren't far behind.|
|Myrtle peeping in mother's door, asking if she can come in.|
|Sissy with two of our babies a few weeks ago.|
|Mother with Blackie just last Friday.|
|Carl followed me home and jumped up into the jasmine-covered arbor where he hung out for more than an hour. Maybe he wants to live at my house all the time?|