The kittens are now looking like miniature cats, rather than just kittens. Although still not entirely steady on their feet, they are perfectly capable of pouncing on each other, and are becoming more playful by the day. When I got up on Saturday morning, red-toes and blue-toes were playing a game of ‘bumpies’ – stand a few inches apart, bounce twice towards eachother, crash into eachother, fall over sideways and then stand up and repeat. Very funny to watch!
We were helping at the Edinburgh & East of Scotland show on Saturday (Richard had his first experience of stewarding), and when we got back in that evening, the babies were moving all around their box and starting to try and climb out. While I was watching, red-toes managed to get up and over the low edge, but once her front half was out, she wasn’t sure how to proceed. She ended up doing a handstand with her back feet still hooked over the side of the box, too scared to carry on forwards, but unable to pull herself up backwards.
She did eventually decide just to drop down onto the floor, but then she stood beside the box looking totally shocked and overwhelmed, and started whimpering. Katie was getting a bit upset by the noise she was making, so I helped her back into the box.
Since the kittens were obviously going to start climbing out of the box, but equally obviously couldn’t get back in, I decided to flatten the lower edge, so that they could just walk in and out. Katie evidently approved of this arrangement, because she promptly lined all the babies up in the opening and lay there to feet them! The babies spent the rest of that evening either exploring outside the box, or sleeping in the new opening!
All three are now becoming much more individual characters, rather than just a litter of kittens. Orange-toes is a bit of a ‘mummy’s boy’, and has a tendency to cry for Katie whenever something isn’t to his liking, yet he surprised us by being the first one out of the box to explore. He is now getting a lot better about being handled, and even came to the edge of the box to ask for a cuddle yesterday. Both red-toes and blue-toes are now very cuddly, but blue-toes tends to want to sit and look around, whereas red-toes likes to tuck into you. She is very alert and inquisitive, but is totally uninterested in any food other than Mum’s milk. The boys, on the other hand, are both getting very interested in the dish of kitten food that I have put in their pen. Blue-toes watches Katie eating it (of course, she prefers that to her own food!), and then goes and sticks his head in the dish like she does. He hasn’t quite figured out that he’s supposed to actually eat, so he just stands with his head in the dish, but I’m sure it won’t be long before he gets it.
I took some more individual photos on Sunday, and when you compare those to the ones from last week, it is obvious just how much they are coming on.
All four are now over 475g, with red-toes still the largest at 489g. She looks smaller than her brothers, yet is consistently heavier, so I am hopeful that she will have ‘good Burmese weight’ when she is older. Particularly so, since she is reserved to go to a show home! Yes, our first baby has a home booked. She will be going to live with a couple who have seven other cats, including some retired breeding queens from a friend of ours. Little red-toes will have access to a cat-secure garden, and we will get to see her out on the bench! Fingers crossed she continues to develop nicely.
The nesting box has vetbed in the bottom, plus the heat pad and a towel. I change these over at least once per week, just to minimise the risk of any infection. When I went in to change them last night, the room was quite cool (still over 20°C, but not as warm as usual), so I put a teddy in the (human) bed, and tucked the babies in between that and the pillow to keep them warm.
Katie has always liked to go under the covers on the bed, so when she noticed that the kittens were there, she jumped up, burrowed in past them and then called to them from under the covers. By that point, I had finished sorting their box, but since she was then feeding them, I didn’t want to interrupt. Once they had finished eating, she tucked them all up to have a nap, and she went off to have something to eat herself. When I opened up the covers to check on them, they looked absolutely adorable!