Frustrated - Just want to vent (*Kittens*)

(34 Posts)
Sparrowghost Mon 10-Feb-14 19:33:50

I'm hand raising 6 kittens at the moment and I just need a bit of sympathy. They are just over 2 weeks old and its been a complete rollercoaster.. It seems to be one issue after another with them and I'm getting so disheartened and frustrated.

First we started with constipation on the switch to formula. I had to water down the milk a bit more and start them on lactulose to get it all moving, although they still had massive big bellies.

Then one kitten went down with a UTI .. which quickly spread to kitten #2, so they were all jabbed with antibiotics to nip it in the bud.

While we were treating the UTI they were weighed on the original scale they were weighed on, and in a week had only put on 30g or so each. Still had the massive bellies so we opted to worm them.

Wormed them, bellies came down a bit, but then it became apparent just how ribby and skinny they were. So we've had to go back to every 2hr feeds to try to build them up - have been doing that for the last 3 days, except this morning the smallest woke up with a gammy eye.

What next?! I will be gutted to lose one but I am so worried now sad

Sparrowghost Mon 10-Feb-14 19:35:22

Just to add - the worming decision was weighed up for pros and cons and I do think it was the right thing to do even though they weren't 100%

Fluffycloudland77 Mon 10-Feb-14 19:38:07

Maybe that's their lot of bad luck and they will thrive now. Baby animals are hard work.

Sparrowghost Mon 10-Feb-14 20:02:28

I hope so! I don't grudge them any of my time (I'd do it all over again in a blink) I just want them to do now .. no more problems

SecretNutellaFix Mon 10-Feb-14 20:04:27

I am friends with a former poster on here called Pinot. She hand raised two kittens from a day old. Originally it was three, but one was very sickly and died.

She acknowledged how much hard work it was to raise the two- maybe if you did an advanced search it would bring up the thread she had about them? Perhaps give you a light at the end of the tunnel?

Well done so far- they are working just as hard as you are, and you must be all knackered. They have made two weeks longer than they would have done, so keep going- you are obviously doing something right for them.

Pinot's remaining kittens? Beautiful happy and healthy adult cats now.

cozietoesie Mon 10-Feb-14 20:09:35

I feel for you. Mother cats have a hard enough time with large litters and they only have to lie down and sprawl to feed. (Although at least you don't have to wash nether parts with your tongue: very small mercies.)

Another poster called Cailleach found a litter in a hedge and had to hand raise them - she was almost headless by the end, she was so tired.

You might like to read her thread and feel not so alone.

Sparrowghost Mon 10-Feb-14 20:10:27

I'm not finding it too tiring, just utterly frustrating that we keep hitting problem after problem. I'll search for those threads, thanks smile

Fluffycloudland77 Mon 10-Feb-14 20:11:47

I always wondered about Pinot.

Sparrowghost Mon 10-Feb-14 20:12:59

This is them

and when they arrived here

Fluffycloudland77 Mon 10-Feb-14 20:18:57

Was the dog thinking "she's taking the raw food too far"?

Sparrowghost Mon 10-Feb-14 20:20:26

No, she loves babies. She's been their closest watcher and finds me if they cry

cozietoesie Mon 10-Feb-14 20:22:23

She does seem to be looking at them in quite a maternal way. Does she do any cuddling?

Sparrowghost Mon 10-Feb-14 20:24:52

If they sit still, yes. If they move, she gets a bit cross that they won't stay still and ends up going off in a huff grin I'm just glad she doesn't herd them

OP those kittens are gorgeous. You are wonderful for looking after them.

cozietoesie Mon 10-Feb-14 20:27:02

She will.grin

It's in collies' natures.

SecretNutellaFix Mon 10-Feb-14 21:35:37

She'll be demented in about 3 weeks time then. smile

Lonecatwithkitten Mon 10-Feb-14 23:19:31

Hand rearing kittens is not dissimilar to babies in the NICU and they are as fragile. It is bloody hard work and when we have a litter we always split them as if you have more than two you never get any sleep. It can be a very useful form of birth control in trainee vet nurseswink.
Once tired you then become very sensitive to the little ups and downs of their care.
You just have to remember without you there would be no hopeenvy.

Sparrowghost Tue 11-Feb-14 10:19:51

I think I'm a weirdo. This is just making me broodier, even with the ups and downs smile But as you say, the more tired you are, the more it all seems to be a roller coaster.

Have not long fed them and usually feed the smallest (skinniest) one last .. today I didn't because the one I thought he was at first glance wasn't him grin He doesn't feel so skinny now although he does need to catch up still. Nice high to start the morning.. even his sore eyes look MUCH better

cjdamoo Tue 11-Feb-14 10:28:27

Ive been handraising 4 kittens. There was 5 but one died shortly after birth. Mother cat rejected them all at 3 weeks. Its been hard work. Last Friday at 8 weeks Gizmo had a massive fit and died. Other kittens were given a clean bill of health on the Saturday. Small but well. Sunday morning we got up to find scamp dead. Its been a rollercoaster and a lot of tears. Nookie and ludo seem fine but I am constantly on edge.

cozietoesie Tue 11-Feb-14 10:35:32

They would all have died, cjd, if you hadn't stepped in to help.

Well done to all the foster mums.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 11-Feb-14 12:03:07

I would suggest rotating the order that you feed kittens in and actually that weaker ones are feed earlier in the process. But you are all doing well and as Cozie says without foster mums they would all die.

Sparrowghost Tue 11-Feb-14 12:24:27

He's been fed last cause of his mucky eyes. I was feeding the pushiest two last to make them learn thuggery doesn't work. The rest are fed in whatever order I pick them up!

cozietoesie Tue 11-Feb-14 12:27:18

Unfortunately, thuggery does work when it comes to the milk bar and their instinct is likely telling them to thrust themselves forward.

Sparrowghost Tue 11-Feb-14 12:43:30

I have a friend with a bottle fed cat (he's now an old old boy) and she gave in to his thuggery and demanding from day one and as a result is now woken up several times in the night to feed him, as well as having automatic feeders galore. I know these guys are only tiny, but waiting a few more minutes won't kill them and will hopefully prevent them turning out like my friend's cat. . he is lovely but spoilt and never learnt to wait

Sparrowghost Tue 11-Feb-14 12:46:01

If they had mum I am sure she would get up and walk off with these two more then once as they come in all teeth and claws!!

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