Kittens disappeared

by Lisa Kilby
(King, NC, USA)

I am so upset....a very pregnant community cat showed up at our home in late April...May 1st she was gone for a day and came back then we knew she had had her kittens but could not find them for almost 4 weeks... since we have found them she moved them under our back deck and we have been feeding them and petting them and she has learned to trust us with them, although she will not allow us to touch her... my plan was to keep them healthy and then find them homes... Saturday we gave two of her kittens to a loving home ...on Sunday she seemed fine and ate well and the three remaining kittens came out and ate and let us hold them... today is Monday and when I went out this morning the mother cat ate on our back porch and then I went to feed her babies and they are not there!!# There is a large male cat here that is also a community cat that has showed up periodically during this whole process but I cannot find the kittens at all and I am heartbroken... the kittens that have disappeared are seven weeks old there are two females and one male and I am desperate to find them... the mother has not nursed them today I can tell because her belly is dragging down.... we live on a farm with many Barns and buildings they could be anywhere but I suppose my question is, is this Behavior common in Feral communities?? I feel like the kittens are too tame to be happy in a feral Community now especially without their mother I could understand it better if she had disappeared with them... I've looked pretty thoroughly around and see no sign of struggle and I have walked around with a stinky bowl of tuna calling their names to no avail...
PLEASE HELP :( :(


RESPONSE:

It is not uncommon for feral mother cats to move their kittens to a safe place if they sense a danger. Perhaps this male cat caused her concern and she moved them to safety. We can hope this is the case.

Since it's a few weeks since you first wrote, perhaps they have returned or she has made the move permanent. I hope that they are safe.

Comments for Kittens disappeared

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Jan 04, 2019
I hate to be the one
by: Anonymous

It's possible the arrival of the male cat has something to do with this. You don't mention the sex of the kittens.

Some questions:
How old are the kittens now?
Is the mother showing signs of being fertile?
Is the male cat fully grown?
Could he be the father? (It's rare for fathers to be nurturing, but I have seen it. We had one who was very attached to the momma and was a quite good father for the kittens' first six months or so before moving on. However, the opposite is much more common.)

I also hope the kittens are safe.

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