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New kittens

(28 Posts)

Hi everyone!!

I am now the proud mummy of 2 kittens who are between 8-10 weeks old - I adopted them from the RSPCA as they were born outside and needed a home. The RSPCA initially thought they were totally feral but they did start to enjoy interaction so they thought they could be re-homed.

I know it's very early days as I only picked them up yesterday but literally as soon as I got them home they were out the box and that was the last I saw of them. One rammed herself on the kitchen window will and one hid under my bed. I managed to get the one from the kitchen into the bedroom so she could be with her sister and I have put all their bits in that room and shut the door whilst I am out at work so hopefully they will come out gradually. The kitten I managed to get hold off was so nervous she scratched me to bits. My last cat I had was nervous when she was a kitten for a start but nothing to this extent so I'm now worrying they will never get used to us.

Is this common...for them to be that nervous. I heard one of them come out from under the bed in the night to have some food but then she went straight back.

cozietoesie Thu 27-Nov-14 10:36:42

The can certainly be extremely nervous when they first arrive but if they're semi-ferals, you could really do with issey who has lots of experience in this area - so hopefully she'll see this and post. Keep an eye on the thread.

Aviator Thu 27-Nov-14 11:25:01

I'm also a newbie to the kitten world, but just to encourage you......I found a kitten a few weeks ago, we were not sure of its history but the vet suspect it was not feral because they make a funny noise if they are feral. It was about 8 weeks old when we found it. After entering our flat it hid behind the bookshelves for 2-3 days. I had to cover the books with waterproof stuff as it was peeing everywhere. After 3 days it was brave enough to wander out, still jumpy though but it quickly found some more hiding places, after about 8 days it finally stopped hissing at me. Did not scratch at all though. Now (3 weeks in) it is settled and even ventures out of the 2 rooms we kept it in. However, RUNS for the security of these rooms when it sees anyone. So....just patience really. I found being quite still and quiet when it ventured out seemed to make it feel comfortable. I read somewhere that leaving the TV or radio on when you are out can be useful for settling so they get used to hearing human voices.

isseywithcats Thu 27-Nov-14 13:27:59

ask around to see if you can borrow a dog cage put the kittens in to it with their blankets, food water and a small litter tray, for the first few days keep them in there and stroke them frequently and talk to them until they start to calm down , they will feel safe in there dont worry its not cruel, after they start to calm down then pick each one up individually and uddle them for a little while, making this longer each day, with ferals you have to be patient and slowly slowly works best, and when you pick them up dont risk your hands by picking them up round their middle, pick them up by the scruff of the neck as this is how mom would pick them up and they relax enough to let you move them a short distance, get treats and while they are in the cage get them used to taking treats off your hands as this will bond them to you

Thanks, am on a mission now to get a dog cage, think i've found one! So, after a few days should I just leave the cage open and they can go in and out as they please and then after a while take it away?

I hope they are going to be happy with us and not nervous. They have had their ears clipped - any idea why that's been done?

RubbishMantra Thu 27-Nov-14 17:01:03

You mean part of their ears removed? Sounds like animal cruelty. People can be capable of extremely shitty stuff. Probably the reason they're so scared ofhumans, poor little things. sad

Thank goodness they've found a home with you. They'll come to trust you soon enough. Dreamies can be quite a motivator.

Fluffycloudland77 Thu 27-Nov-14 18:45:40

They clip ferals ears when neutered so if they get released again they won't be trapped for neutering.

We need pictures!

isseywithcats Thu 27-Nov-14 19:19:07

as fluffy said the ears have been clipped to show that they were neutered as fearls, and yes after a few days start leaving the door open during the day so they can explore and if they still hide put them in there at night till they get their confidence

isseywithcats Thu 27-Nov-14 19:19:51

fearls equals ferals (fingers going faster than brain)

wtffgs Thu 27-Nov-14 19:30:44

Squee! (Soppy emoticon)

A cage then graduating up to a room until they feel more secure. I am a huge fan of Feliway too!

Greenrememberedhills Thu 27-Nov-14 19:33:08

Personally I dint think it's a good sign and I wouldn't be happy with them. They sound feral.

cozietoesie Thu 27-Nov-14 20:17:53

Maybe so - but if I recall, issey and her cat rescue have raised some serious cuddlers who started life as ferals or semi-ferals. At only 8-10 weeks old, they should be capable of bringing round.

Good luck Betty.

OK well I've borrowed a dog cage which I will put up tonight.

I still havent seen them, they stay under my bed but are coming out to eat, drink and go in the litter tray.

How the hell am I going to get them out from under the bed though without severly distressing them.

I am quite worried that I won't be able to bring them round so to speak but it's early days and I'll give it a damn good go. They were getting used to the lady at the RSPCA and so I feel quite optimistic but we'll see.

cozietoesie Fri 28-Nov-14 09:58:12

Any way you can sit in there of an evening (I know it's your bedroom) and watch a movie or something on a device or read a book etc? And then ignore them. (Cats can be quite 'adventurous' if they think they're being ignored.)

It's just to get them used to your waking presence, really. They're probably still terrified so it's quite a challenge for you! Deep patience is likely required with them making very small steps at first. Come on here and yell at us if you're getting dispirited - there's usually someone around. smile

So do you think I should wait for them to come out of their own accord rather than force them out? Im going to put a small litter tray in there and their food etc.....

I'm just a bit worried because my sister and her kids are coming to stay the weekend so it will be hectic but if I dont get them in that cage and they stay under the bed for the weekend it's going to be even harder to tame them so to speak.

cozietoesie Fri 28-Nov-14 10:18:15

Ah, your hand will be rather forced then - will they be arriving tomorrow? I'd normally spend a lot of time in the room with them and judge whether to hoik them out according to their reaction to that but it may be that you'll have to have them out sharpish. Issey may advise.

Shall you be able to keep the kids away from the kittens? (Feverish youngsters may be a little too much for them at this stage in the game.)

They are arriving tonight. Bad timing really but to be honest I had no idea they would be this nervous. I think I will call the lady from the RSPCA where I got them from and ask her advice too.

cozietoesie Fri 28-Nov-14 10:24:12

I'd get them out then, personally, and get it over with. (And keep the kids away from them - which could well be hard.)

Yeah I think you're right. I'm going to have to man up, get some gloves on and force them out. I don't want to stress them out but I think they will just stay under the bed forever otherwise.

The kids will be fine, they're not tiny (9,12 and 13). DS is desperate to see them - he hasn't set eyes on them yet.

Thing is, when they are in the cage how am I going to handle them - surely as soon as I open the door to try and give them a stroke or fuss they are going to bolt.

I'm actually a bit annoyed now that the RSPCA let me home these kittens without warning me or checking I can cope with them.

cozietoesie Fri 28-Nov-14 11:13:56

The RSPCA may have received the wrong impression of how they were doing. This is why it's so often better to move in a mature cat rather than kittens - mature rescue cats are more of a known quantity than kits.

Anyway - you've got support here. You should be able to manage.

(Watch out for your nephew particularly - kids can sometimes sneak into rooms on the basis that 'Oh they'll be fine with me' and it doesn't necessarily work that way. At least if they're in the dog crate, you can show them to the kids and get it over with.)

isseywithcats Fri 28-Nov-14 13:29:40

right as you need them out from under the bed a short sharp catch is required you will need the door shut and another person present what you do is get a broom and swoosh them out from under the bed by sweeping the broom flat across the floor from one end to the end you want them to emerge. and block off three side of the bed base with blankets to focus their direction with someone with a towel handy who is confident enough to catch them as the fly out, have a carrier handy to scoop them into, yes they will hate you for about five minutes but you will be able to get them to the cage with your fingers intact and not too badly traumatised kittens,

Thanks issey - I'll get DS on broom duty then and I'll be ready with the towel...tricky because theres two of them but I'll give it a go.

I was gonna put them straight in the cage. I bought some feliway or whatever its called today so fingers crossed it helps (I was a bit shocked at the price, lol).

How do I get them used to me though once they are in the cage - surely if I open the door to stroke them they will just run off again?

isseywithcats Fri 28-Nov-14 17:15:02

if they are quite timid you would be surprised they will go to the back of the cage rather than shoot out of the door and you sit so you are blocking most of the door and have the cage in your kitchen if its a big enough room as you can shut the door and there wont be anything they can dive under or behind

Fluffycloudland77 Fri 28-Nov-14 17:47:21

Many years ago we got two pedigree kittens at 12 weeks, well socialised & used to huge dogs.

They hid under mum and dads bed for 3 days, all you saw was two pairs of eyes looking at you in the gloom.

Some cats don't like change but most of them will come round in the end.

ArabellaStrange Fri 28-Nov-14 18:00:41

When I was a teenager, we got two kittens that had been in a normal home but they hid for around the first three weeks. They ended up as lovely cats apart from the occaisional protest shit from the female

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