Kitten milestones6 July, 2007
Like human babies, kittens have developmental stages.
(To save a long story, you can find out what these milestones are by checking out the kitten calendar on http://www.purrinlot.com/kittenbirthcalendar.htm. This valuable calendar charts the first 12 weeks of a kitten’s life.)
As a surrogate mummy cat, I cheered my kittens on whenever they passes, or surpassed the milestones. For e.g. according to the kitten calendar, kittens eyes open at approximately 10 days’ old. My kittens opened their eyes at about one week old.
I’ve tried not to compare the progress of this current litter to previous litters, but of course it wasn’t possible. I think this litter seems a little less energetic than the previous litters. Possibly because there are only two of them and there’s been no need to compete for resources. They have also been less inclined to break out of their pen and explore their surroundings.
They started crawling about a week and a half ago, so I had to erect some metal-mesh panels around the kitten box. I also turned the box over so that the access hole was lower because I was afraid that if it was too high the kittens might tumble out and not be able to climb back. I left a little gap for mum cat to get in and out, and blocked it with a pile of books, thinking that they were too high for the kittens to climb over.
Well, I say that, but yesterday I got home from work to hear a loud squeak. I ran upstairs to find the two kittens had managed to breach the pile of books. Unfortunately, they ran into THE BENGAL who happened to be on the landing too. I don’t know who was more shocked – Maya or the two kittens. Maya sniffed them with that huff-huff-huff sound that cats make when they’re stressed, and then hissed and snarled at them. I chivvied her into a room and she seemed relieved when she couldn’t see them.
I think it’s maybe time for me to bring the kittens downstairs into the living room where there’s more space for them to run around. It’s probably also time for me to start weaning them. Several mornings back, the girl kitten sniffed my fingers which smelt of lamb I’d prepared for Ananda, and tried to nip my hand. I think she wanted some real food. If I’m going to start weaning them then I definitely will have to have them downstairs where it’ll be easier to litter-train them as well.
They’ve developed the start of the Maine Coon trill as well. Hearing their attempts make me laugh – it sounds like Prrrp! Prrrp! delivered very high, like a wet finger on a balloon. And they’ve learnt quickly to bond with humans. The little girl comes out to greet me at the pen, even if her mum and brother are in the box. On the occasions when I’ve had them on the bed, they’ve fallen asleep trustingly. It just warms my heart when animals put their trust in me.
Here is a photo of the little boy, looking wistfully at me from the confines of his pen: