Just 1 week until kittens are due!

Sweetie is looking fat and happy, resting often, and eating often.  We set up her “nursery” last week.  We’ll confine her to the “nursery” whenever we are leaving home, or going to bed, to help ensure she doesn’t have her kittens someplace inconvenient, like on the stack of towels in the bathroom, or on the couch.

Her “nursery” is a medium sized pet carrier, padded with towels and blankets, with the door removed, and a blanket draped over it for warmth and darkness.  It is stationed right next to a heater in the kitchen, for warmth.  The litter box and the feeding dishes are nearby.  My birth supplies are also in a tote box nearby, ready to go.  My bedroom is right off the kitchen, so I am nearby at night.

Once the kittens are born, I securely tape a piece of cardboard that is about 6 inches tall, to the bottom of the door.  This ensures that tiny kittens can’t crawl out of their little nursery and helps to keep toddler hands away from them, too.   Sweetie can still come and go, but the kittens are safe.  Once the kittens start trying to climb over the cardboard, we take it off.  A box flap from a large cardboard box works nicely for this.

After the kittens are born, I also will put a baby gate in the doorway of this room to keep the dog out and limit the traffic flow of kids into the kitchen.  Once the kittens are bigger, and no longer comfined to their box, this gate becomes even more important.  We want them confined in the room with the litter box until they are litter trained.

Their last few weeks in our home the kittens will be wandering throughout the entire house,  exploring, adjusting to the normal activity level of a family with children and a dog.  We’ll find out how well litter trained they are at that point.  Sometimes we have to re-confine them for a short time.

For now, we watch and wait.  Hopefully I won’t miss the birth this time.  I’ve been there for each birth so far, but last time she was acting like she was in labor as I was heading to bed at midnight.  I waited up with her for a couple hours, and finally decided to get some rest.  I woke up to the loud crying of a kitten an hour later.

She’d delivered in front of her box and one kitten was meowing loudly, looking for her, while she was delivering the second kitten nearby.  I checked him out and put him on a heating pad, recorded his statistics, and then did the same for his littermate.  I waited with Sweetie, but there weren’t any more kittens, and I went to bed after I had them all situated in their “nursery” and saw that they were nursing well.

I can’t wait to see what color combinations we’ll have this time, how many kittens there will be, and what genders.  We seem to have more black kittens and more male kittens  at ElCloud Cattery.  We do always have one red kitten, and we’ve had one tortoiseshell.  We’ve only had two female kittens.

We’re excited here at ElCloud Cattery, but there’s nothing else to do but wait … so we’ll keep waiting.

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