This is an update of the threadI posted a few weeks ago about a family of four kittens and their mother I discovered in our hedge.
So basically we fed the family on and off for a few weeks, until three days ago when we left the front door to the house open and the mother and two of the kittens came inside. We quickly shut the door behind them, and viola, we had our new cats!
We set them up with food, water, bed, litter box, etc, but the rest was not that easy. First of all, the other two kittens are still out there somewhere, and the three of them inside our house are constantly standing by the windows/doors, meowing to be let out.
Second, the two kittens inside the house will not let us touch them at all. They run and hide from us, and even hiss. I should mention that they are probably about three months old and other than us leaving them food outside earlier, have not had any contact with people.
The mother is a bit of an enigma. When they were outside, she was defensive to the point of being aggressive with intense hissing and spitting. But inside she is almost friendly, and has let me scratch her ears and even pick her up for a few seconds. But her first reaction is still defensive.
It has only been a couple of days, but we are a bit frustrated that we are getting the negatives of pet ownership without any of the positives. I have two young daughters (5 and 8) and they are afraid of the cats because of their behavior. If I knew that it would get better I would try to stick it out, but don’t know whether trying to tame these ferals is a lost cause.
I should add that we never really wanted to keep the mother or to have more than two of them.The idea was to trap, fix and release the mother somewhere far away, but that would mean forcibly separating her from her kittens, with no guarantees that we would even end up with nice tame kittens. So we are thinking of just opening the front door and letting them all back out into the wild.
But before we do that, do you have any advice or uplifting examples to share?
PS I forgot to mention that mother still nurses the kittens a couple of times a day. Is that normal for 3-month old kittens? From what I read kittens are normally weaned at about 2 months… If they still need to nurse that makes me worry even more about the kittens that are still out there.