7 September 2002

It's taken them a long time to work out how
to do it, but this morning when I came
downstairs they had found their way on
to the top of the Piano and were sitting
there looking completely innocent.

8 September 2002
Don't let anyone tell you kittens are just a bundle of cuteness... I'm just amazed we don't get more eye injuries. This is Panda...





9 September 2002

Libby's tummy has gone very wobbly in the last couple of days - this is because she's eating the kitten's food, and as it has some milk content it's affecting her digestion - all oriental and foreign breeds are lactose intolerant, some more than others. However, on the bright side, I have definitely won the weaning war! At last all of them are going for food, though not all the same food, so it makes feeding a bit complicated. Three will eat raw meat, and are consequently much heavier and more solid than the others. One only eats biscuits or roast chicken, three will eat kitten cereal mixed with Liquivite and the remaining one was a bit of an enigma until I spotted him eating fish. He's like a little greyhound - slim and muscular, but he's not going to get fat on a diet of white fish, so I mixed the fish in with the cereal and liquivite, and bingo, everybody seems to like it! Unfortunately I can't just leave it down for them to eat, which is what they need, or Libby eats it and it makes her ill. If only they'd just eat meat!!

10 September 2002
Our second potential owner visited today. I HATE this part! It's just as bad as it was with the last litter. I'd far rather not have to decide where they go. Anyway, she arrived shortly after 11 am, when they had completely exhausted themselves. Nothing we could do would wake them, and in fact they slept pretty much right through to 3.30 pm, though poor Gill couldn't wait that long to see if they actually had legs or not! Mind you, they did look very picturesque in the sun, so I can't blame them for just wanting to bask in it.

11 September 2002
I've worked out that it's currently costing me about £10 per day to feed these cats - roast chicken, raw rabbit, Liquivite, baby cereal, white fish, biscuits and tinned natural diet. Then of course there's the sack or so of cat litter we get through every couple of days, and at the rate I'm doing the washing I'll be needing a new washing machine by the end of this! I can't complain though: they really have started eating now, though they all show clear preferences. Three are on raw rabbit, one eats only fish (which explains why he looks like a greyhound) though he's getting liquivite mixed in too. Two eat roast chicken, and surprised me today by eating the tinned food that I had mixed in. One only eats sludgy porridge, but she also looked interested in the tinned food late today, and the last one eats almost anything but prefers the biscuits. Libby is eating wonderfully well too, and maintains her slender figure without actually going thin. This is a big relief to me as she's an anxious mother, and that sort often feed to the point where they're like coat-hangers, and worry the weight off as well. I think she's just a really good mother, which is really lucky for me. I tried and tried to get all eight of them into this picture as they were all awake and playing, but it just didn't work out, so there are just seven here.

12 September 2002
I wasn't really intending to keep up the diary once Ellie's kittens had reached going-away time, but somehow it has dribbled on! Unfortunately as Libby's babies take up more of my time, I have less time to sit down and update the website, so you'll have to bear with me if I only get to it every couple of days. Ellis is going through what I can only describe as a gawky teenager stage. Suddenly his ears look huge and he's sucking in his cheeks and not eating all that well, though he seems fine otherwise. I wonder if he's reacting to the Rabies vaccine? I am flying to Frankfurt am Main with him on the 27th of this month, where Petra will meet me and put me up for the night before I fly back. I'm not sure Ellis will think much of this as he shouts all the time if I put him in his carrier (which is really too small). I'm trying to make him a soft leather harness for the journey so that he can come out of his carrier when we are able, but you wouldn't believe how difficult it is to get simple things like rivets and buckles! I traipsed all over Oxford today, from the cobbler to the fabric and hardware shops, and I'm going to have to dismantle a larger adult-size harness just to get the bits and pieces I need to make a small one for Ellis.

Libby is very vocal with the babies, talking to them all the time when they play (it makes for quite sleepless nights for me, as I hear her talking to them in the room below). However, she is also able to play with them now they're quite big, and she clearly loves them to bits...

Now that she's discovered solid food, Nine is growing like a weed and I'm no longer worrying about her because her little hips are skinny. She has caught up with the bigger kittens too, and is not noticeably smaller than the others, though there is now about 250 grams between the smallest and largest kittens. It's quite a big gap, but there isn't an obvious runt, just one (the big boy) which is noticeably more 'solid' than the others. He has a beautiful 'old' head too, and is a bundle of purrs. He's going to be a really soppy cat when he grows up! The picture below is of Nine - still chocolate-box-pretty... and it looks as if she's chosen too.

12 September 2002
8 weeks old today - time is flying now. Another new 'parent' came to visit today and chose Piper, the smaller of the two boys. He was a sweetie with them - he's turning into a lovely person, very keen to be involved with me when I go in to see them. But then they're all beginning to look beyond just their siblings for attention now, and really tugging on my heartstrings. It makes them much more fun to visit, as they want to interact far more than before. I also spotted two eating the raw meat who don't normally go for it, so I think their eating is settling down more into the 'adult' habits. Most of them have names too, though 'Seven' seems to have stuck... it seems to be a 'P' litter. I had to mark them again this morning as sometimes they're very difficult to tell apart - it's easy when they're all in one place, but that doesn't happen all that often now.