Sunday, June 3, 2012

Kittens, Kittens Everywhere!

As regular readers are aware, my cat is broken. Not broken broken, you know, all her parts seem to still function. She respirates oxygen and consumes kibble. But her Wanna Kill Mice switch seems all gummed up, and I don't think it's coming back. She's about eight years old, give or take a bunch, and seems to regard that as retirement age. Okay, I mean who am I to complain? It's a personal decision.

Anyway, the otherwise obvious answer of getting an emergency backup cat comes with some issues, principal among them the fact that cats are only about halfway up the food chain around here and it hurts my feelings to provide variety to the diet of the local coyotes, owls, hawks, bobcats, mountain lions, feral dogs, etc. So I'll admit I haven't pursued this issue with any real vigor. Then I started finding droppings INSIDE the Secret Lair, and that's just unacceptable. Landlady's been after me for some time to get a kitten while Click's still around. There are excellent reasons to do so:

  • Click has a near-mystical ability to stay alive in the desert, due to her stringent attention to some fundamental rules. She could, IF she chose and the kitten would learn, teach these rules to her understudy.
  • The dogs will protect and cherish the kitten, as they have done to all her predecessors. IF the kitten learns at an early age to accept them.

I had one other cat, before I became the local dog nanny. He didn't learn and he didn't like the dogs. Or Click. And he didn't survive. Lesson learned: Either go without cats, or get a female kitten while the dogs and the older cat are still around and active.

Having decided to chance that second thing, I was faced with the problem of where one goes about finding a kitten. I'm a hermit, you know. I don't get around much.

Well, I let it be known to the neighbors that I was in the market for a female kitten. Very shortly thereafter, I got a call from my neighbor J that there was a CraigsList ad from a local town, for some kittens that had been dumped and needed a home. I contacted the people immediately. They flaked out on me. That was last weekend.

As it happened, Landlady was up at her property last weekend. She said, "No problem. There are kittens galore in [the city where she lives.] You want, I get." I said cool.

But you know: Live local, shop local. A few days ago I got a call from another neighbor. The family at the local auto repair shop has a litter they're looking for homes for. So it seems our little Lair will soon know the pitter-patter of little paws, very soon.

Personal to Landlady: Abort Operation Obtain Kitten. I say again: Abort Operation Obtain Kitten.

Updates to follow.


Landlady said...

Transmission received: Operation Obtain Kitten has been aborted. Over.

Ian said...

Well, damn. Now what should I do with this crate of surplus Bulgarian kittens I found? I already cleaned off the cosmoline and everything!

Joel said...

Do they still have their grenade launchers?

Matt said...

Could of mailed you a box of kittens last week. Pulled three out of the neighbors duct work. In this area the pound has a waiting list for kittens. The Coyotes and Hawks learn faster than kittens.

Anonymous said...

I gotta' few, but they wouldn't survive the shipment.

Now Lightfoot the MilkRoom Assasin (aka She who brings bats, snakes, moles, mice, woodrats, small racoons and small other creatures) is nearing her 9th year of doing so. If she'd only stop leaving the livers on the milkstand for me as treats - we'd be good.

MamaLiberty said...

Oh fun! We do require pictures, remember. LOL

I hear you about the survival traits. I only had barn cats, so they were on their own period. We inherited one old female when we bought the little farm, and she went on to have at least 3 kittens a year for the next 9 years! She was about 13 when she had the last ones.

Her secret, besides being generally smart and fast... was to use the drainage pipe under the road to go out to the wild area there. She never actually crossed the road! And she taught her kittens to do the same thing. Year after year. Some of them actually learned!

Anonymous said...

My city born cat never did get the hang of mousing and my country born cat never got the hang of roach catching.

I ended up with a lot of cats, trying to find one that works at the right time and place. In the process, the mice out numbered all of us. They multiply rapidly.


The Grey Lady said...

Suggested modification for use of grenade launching kittens.

My condolences to all kitten lovers in the world, I am currently grieving the lose of mine to a fox.