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Unread 06-07-2013   #1 (permalink)
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Default Need Help with Feral/Stray and Kittens

I need help with a feral/stray cat that I discovered on my patio a week ago. We live in the Las Vegas area and live in a small condo with an attached patio (it’s a lower unit). We actually rarely use the patio, but Friday night my husband and 3-year-old granddaughter decided to go out there and blow bubbles and play with the foam letter tiles that were stacked up on a shelf under the BBQ grill, which was pushed into a corner. After being out their playing for about 30 minutes, we all of a sudden heard a god-awful noise and a commotion in the corner under the BBQ grill and out comes a small animal—which turned out to be a newborn kitten. The mama cat had been hiding under there the whole time (and maybe for days previous). I managed to go out there and take a piece of one of those foam tiles and use it to gingerly push the kitten to with the mama’s reach. (The kitten I saw did not appear to have it’s eyes open.) When I looked out later, I saw that she had pulled it back under. From what I was able to see, she had at least 3 kittens under there. I decided to give her a dish of water (it’s HOT here), and I foolishly tried to put it by her. Out came her paw, knocking the dish up into my face. Later that evening I WENT OUT THERE to put food and water down further away from her, and she came flying out from under the grill and leapt towards me as I ran back in the house. At which point she bounced off the window of the patio door. She leapt at the door a couple more times—very fiercely. I’ll tell you the truth: a) I’m not used to cats, have always had small rescue DOGS; and b) I’m scared to death of her…BUT c) I care about her and feel responsible for her now that she has landed in my life.
Since then we have been putting food on the patio for her (my husband just drops it over the ledge, because the one time he tried to set a bowl on the patio floor she left claw marks in his shoulder). We also put water out for her everyday -- on the corner of the ledge (I put ice in it in the am because of the sun and heat). She can and does jump up on the ledge to drink and she has been eating the food. However, I have not seen the kittens again since that lst night. Nor have I heard any kind of mewing. Is it possible the kittens are still alive and either hidden under a fleece blanket that is on the patio OR hidden someplace else and she goes at night to feed them? She seems to be on the patio most of the day. She has looked at us through the window calmly a few times, but other times she leaps at the window in attack mode if we look at her. She also actually jumped up on the ledge in an attacking way at me one morning as I put the water out for her. I am told by a woman at the feral cat group here in town that this kind of aggression is NOT typical behavior. They tell me to keep feeding and watering her for about 4 more weeks and then they will come out and trap her and hopefully her kittens as well. They think there is a very good chance the kittens are alive, either hidden on the patio or someplace else. They do say, however, that they will release her (them) to the same area after she is spayed. As volatile as she is, I’m willing to loan her my patio for several weeks, but I’m not willing to GIVE it to her forever. I WOULD be willing to feed her, but not if I’m scared of her. And I do want to be able to go out on my patio again at some point. So, I figure while she’s being spayed, if I empty out the patio so there’s no where to hide, perhaps she will move on? I feel like we were really lucky my granddaughter didn’t get hurt during the “unveiling” because we had no idea she was there and my granddaughter was pulling foam tiles right off the shelf that she was hiding under. NOW if I co anywhere NEAR that shelf, or on the patio at all, she literally jumps me, and has, as I said, clawed my husband.
Any thoughts? Does anyone here think it’s possible the kittens are still alive somewhere?
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Unread 06-08-2013   #2 (permalink)
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Thank you for caring about this little mother. I have sent you a private message.

Tell your husband to take good care of those scratches, cat scratches can fester and get infected and antibiotics may be needed.
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Unread 06-08-2013   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks! I'll head over.
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