Saturday, July 31, 2010

Reunited with FFF folks! (and LB starts to PLAY!)

Fences for Fido had an all-day board "retreat" today. You guessed it - Little Bird came with me! She was surrounded by 14 humans who absolutely adored her and showered her with attention. Here she is with FFF board member, Andrea.

She is wrapped up because she had just eaten, was getting sleepy, and seemed a little cold.

Right after this, she peed for the first time in a few days! YEAH!! The vet hadn't been too worried - afterall, she was probably very dehydrated and under nourished. But I almost jumped for joy when she peed in her kitty carrier!

She handled the day like a rock star and didn't cry or meow or hiss at all. In fact, when I got her home and back into the bathroom, she started to play!!!! At 6:04pm, for the first time, she showed any interest in playing. She started to attack my hair. I found a broken rubber band on the floor and thought it could be fun for her - but it turns out she must have thought it was a snake because she jumped about 6 inches in the air and ran away! No more rubber band - back to my hair and the things she imagines are on the towel she is on!!

I think her starting to play is another HUGE milestone in her recovery. Still no poop, but the vet thinks that isn't that abnormal. I'm to try stimulating her bowels by rubbing her tummy with a warm wash cloth (apparently mama cats have to do this to newborns to get them to go to the toilet!).

And, in closing - just when I thought she could not get any cuter, she discovered her TAIL!!! I think it'll be a while before something this exciting happens again. She is so cute when attacking her tail.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Little Bird comes to work

Little Bird came to work with me today. She still has to have her eyes cleaned regularly and she gets meds every 8-12 hours, so she and her cat carrier came to work. She spent the day hanging with Auntie Megan and many office mates come up to say hello and cuddle the little fluff ball. The vet said she needs a lot of human attention in order to socialize her, so this should help! When I first met her, she showed signs of being feral, but there is NO way this kitten is feral anymore (if ever).

She still hadn't eaten anything, so when I got to work, I called on a colleague who does a lot of cat and kitten rescue. Pam, who works one floor above me, came to my office and showed me how to "force feed" Little Bird some wet food. Pam then suggested I get "KMR" (Kitten Milk Replacement) because she's so young. I called a pet store over lunch and picked some up. SHE LOVED IT!! She's been taking it ever since. She takes it by bottle, which is pretty amazing to watch / do!!!

Here is a close-up of her at work with me!

Little Bird starts to purr!!!

Little Bird needs to have her eyes and nose cleaned with warm gauze every 4-6 hours, so I got up with her at 3 am. It was dark and quiet and peaceful and I saw in the bathroom with her gently massaging her eyes and nose. My vet suggested massaging her in a way that might be like her mama's tongue so I rubbed her neck and below her chin. She loved it. After about 10 minutes of rubbing and petting - she BEGAN TO PURR!!! At 3:18am she turned into a little motorized ball of love. It was one of the most precious things I've experienced in a while. She purred and purred and I thought - how ever am I to put her down and walk away?! Almost as if she realized we both needed to go back to bed, about 10 minutes later, she got up off my lap and walked back into her little den (a large cat carrier). She curled up on the heating pad that is permanently on low for her and went to sleep.

Good night, Little Bird!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Day at the vet!

The kitten spent the day at my vet getting fluids and love and attention.

She came home with medications AND a name: Bird! Apparently when they were cleaning her eyes and nose, they decided she looked like a bird. She weights 12 ounces - less than a pound - so she's actually Little Bird. It suits her and seems to be sticking (for now).

Little Bird is on an antibiotic to try to cure the serious upper respiratory infection she has and she's getting eye drops to keep the crusties away so she can see and breath properly.

I spent the day trying to organize a foster care situation for her where there are no other cats - she's contagious, afterall! But everyone who loves cats is either allergic or has cats already! So Little Bird will be staying with me for the time being. She'll be in our bathroom, where she will get lots of attention and will benefit from the steam from our showers.

Little Bird

Fences for Fido had a fence building event in NE Portland. We had heard that a mama cat had some kittens in the area and were on high alert to find them when we went for the post placement on July 26, 2010. We saw the mom, and almost caught one of the kittens, but they both got away from us.

As we were cleaning up the yard, we found a dead kitten. That made us even more determined to at least catch the baby and give him / her better chances.

FFF returned for the actual fence build on Thursday, July 29. We arrived a little before our volunteers so we could try to find the kitten. I came around the corner and froze. There, nestled in a little nest of dark green weeds, was a tiny kitten. For a split second, I thought she might be a toy - couldn't possibly be real - she was so tiny and curled in a perfect little ball. That must be the kitten we tried to catch Monday night, I thought. I approached ... she didn't move. I got closer ... she still didn't move. I reached down to scoop her up and she tried to move and got about a foot. She fit in my hand and I carried her to my car and to safety.

Here is a picture taken moments after the kitten was scooped up and promised safety and vet care.