I had to cancel my evening plans with my family. They asked if I had a hot date (their exact words) but no, I was just picking up a box of kittens. (Let's be honest, a better night anyway.)
You see, the rescue I foster for put out an immediate call for help after their trip back from country NSW ended up with about 3x more kittens than they were expecting. I volunteered to take three, drove an hour to the rescue coordinators house and was immediately amazed at how many kittens there were. There must have been at least 40. These kittens were on Deathrow in country pounds throughout NSW- some literally had just minutes to live. Most were no more than 8 weeks old. I grabbed my carry cage, while the rescue coordinators chose me some kittens- two from one cage, and after some discussion, rather than the third older kitten they chose one from another cage. That one was Scrat. Though, he was called Basil back then. He wasn't meant to come with me, but by some twist of fate he did.
I travelled home with the cage strapped to my front seat. Their little faces looking at me from between the bars. They were clearly terrified, but they didn't make a peep the whole way. They smelt like urine and were covered in fleas. So I spent a large portion of the night gently washing, blowdrying and flea combing kittens. Each of them just lay in my lap like they knew their lives would change.
This photo below is about 2 weeks after being fattened up, and you can still see his bones jutting out!
They were all skinny, but in my time fostering I had never seen a kitten as thin as Scrat. You could tell he wanted to play, but didn't have quite have the energy like his foster siblings. He had ringworm, and was missing patches of hair all over. His hair was sparse, dull and he was definitely not winning any awards for attractiveness!
But he had the biggest heart, the loudest purr and just tried so hard. It was this reason that I fell in love with him. Because he was so malnourished, he was TINY. I mean- hand and pocket sized. He loved this, because he could sit in your pocket or on your shoulder and get carried around all the time. My dressing gown pocket was a favourite!
I fell in love, but it wasn't until someone else wanted to come meet him that I made it official- realising I couldn't let this weird little creature go.
Fast forward to today, my pocket sized kitten is now a healthy, slightly fat cat. He is still relatively small, which is lucky, because he still demands to be carried around on your shoulder (and I mean demand- pick him up or he will get up there himself!) In future, I may rethink the whole carrying kittens around... He is no longer starving, but he certainly acts like it. His coat is now soft and shiny. He comes when he is called, loves to chat and chirp, rides in the car and loves to watch the birds in the garden and the fish in the fishtank. Though he has no clue whatsoever on how to 'hunt' things- even just his feather stick. To make it even better, all his foster siblings are in loving homes too.
I can't foster as much anymore, due to my own little zoo. I just couldn't give the fosters the time they deserve at the moment. So, I'm helping another way! I created the Lend a Paw Campaign to help more kittens (and dogs, cats + puppies) move from their unfortunate situations into loving families. After all, the worlds best cat was a rescue!
$60 from every $99 session booked in September will be donated to your choice of one of four local rescues. To find out more about the Lend a Paw sessions click the link below.
https://www.tailsoftime.com.au/lendapaw Let's change some lives!