Tonight, while my brothers were doing chores, a wild mother cat came into the barn with a newly born kitten – as in he had been born only minutes earlier. He hadn’t even been cleaned off by her. The only thing she’d done was chew off the umbilical cord.
My brothers watched as she abandoned one kitten in the walkway behind the cows. They thought, “What the heck? Cats just don’t abandon their babies like that.” They saw her go out the barn door and she disappeared for a while. They had to move the kitten in the walkway so it wasn’t trampled by cows when they let them out for the night. They put it in an empty calf pen.
On the way up to the house, the oldest brother found a bigger, drier kitten by my grandparents’ back porch. It had been there for a while, they assumed, since it was crawling in circles in the gravel and crying. There were tomcats malingering not far off.
Agh. She’d left kitten all over the place. Right now, those two are in the calf pen in a little fence made out of straw bales, so they can’t crawl into any of the other pens with calves in them and be sucked to death or stepped on.
What I want to know is if there’s anything we can do to save these kitties. One’s calico and the other appears to be yellow with calico or tabby spots. What’re their odds for survival? Can anyone recommend a milk replacer/formula for them? We’ve “saved” other abandoned kittens before, but they were much older, with both their ears and eyes open, and able to drink cow’s milk.
Is there any chance of them making it with help?