Life, Pets

Lessons learned from becoming a cat mommy

One week ago I became a mommy — to a 4 lb 13 oz kitten. His name is Boogie, because he’s a cute/ornery/playful/sleepy little Booger.

The story in brief:

Came home from work, saw baby cat playing near street, scooped him up and brought him inside. Nervous that I’d taken somebody’s cat, about an hour later we took him outside and tried to find his home. Thought we found his home. Left and went to our home. A couple hours later, we went outside and that’s when we saw him running toward us.

At that moment we had a cat (!).

We brought him back inside and gave him a bath and clipped his nails. We scheduled an appointment with the vet the next morning, and his entire checkup was perfect. No illness, no disease and no biting the vet. He was perfect.

He was a perfect snuggler, too, although it mostly had to be his idea.

But then something changed.

Now, one minute he’s a ferocious lion (i.e., normal cat) that bolts around bookshelves and couches, under the bed and around the table, jumping, attacking, biting and scratching legs, feet, hands, other extremities, toys, newspapers, mirrors, you name it.

The next minute he’s a sleeping angel who lets me take pictures of him.

Boogie is a lot of fun and a lot of work. He’s already taught me so much. Even though I wasn’t expecting him to come into my life so soon, I’m super glad he’s here.

Here are a few lessons learned from mommyhood:

  1. Kittens need small portions of food several times a day.
    When Boogie is being more shark-like than normal, he probably wants more food or water. We give him normal kitten food, but it has to be softened some because he still isn’t chewing.
  2. Spend time with the baby, but give him space.
    Boogie was a stray who now needs lots of love, but that doesn’t mean he always wants to be held. It has to be his idea, and when he wants down, he wants down. With cats there is a very fine line between love and hate; respect that.
  3. Nothing is safe.
    If it’s out of your sight, that doesn’t mean it’s out of the cat’s sight or mind. I’m talking about those dry clumps of dirt in your potted plant. You don’t know they’re there, but they’ll become hockey pucks for Kitty in an instant.
  4. The house must be cat-proofed.
    For example, put up drinking glasses, sweep every inch of the floor, close the gaps in your stair railing (we used some very stylish cardboard).

I’m sure there are more, but, hey, today’s my day off work, and we’ve only had the Boogster for a week. Maybe I’ll check in after his next trip to the vet.

And now, please enjoy these photos.

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