Friday 5 January 2018

Prune settles in & Pot gets her new forever name!

What an amazing few days!

Bringing home a new kitten is always wonderful and exciting especially one who fulfils dreams but we must not forget also that already at home is our own cat and her gorgeous kitten.

Noodle has been the most wonderful and attentive mother. It has been a delight and honour to be able to take part and watch on so closely as she rears her first baby. But as "Pot" has grown older and bolder and more boisterous, I have also seen the first signs of her saying "Look, I've had enough".

Christmas brought in people into her realm and she has been on high alert. All her instincts attuned to any danger that might befall her precious daughter.  She has been watchful, and benevolent as people have wanted to cuddle her sweet child.

So when all went back to normal after boxing day, she had breathed a sigh of relief, only to have me wreck the equilibrium on New Years Day by bringing in a new kitten. 

As I showed her the bag in which Prune was safe from harm the mother instinct in Noodle came to the fore like lightning. She was immediately on tenterhooks, her back arched, hissing and snarling warnings at this infiltrator. Pot ran over to see what the fuss was about - which made Noodle panic more as she tried to let this stranger in the midst know that she was unwelcome here.

After a while, as interest in the bag and its content settled more into curiosity than anger and so I opened the bag and watched carefully ready to swoop in if anyone looked to be in trouble. As Prune came out of the bag the hissing and snarling came again, but what was odd was that Noodle and Pot went straight into the bag now it was empty!

Pot was not scared or cross, she just wanted to play... but Prune was also overwhelmed in this new situation. She had been taken away from all that was familiar to her ad arrived into an environment that was hostile. She began then to hiss at Pot and try to avoid Noodle as she began anxiously to look at her new environment.

Noodle too was overwhelmed, flooded with anxiety, swearing and hissing at Prune AND in confusion also at her daughter who in her eyes was getting wrecklessly close.

Later that evening as I lay on my bed though all three cats were with me. Noodle and Pot were in their usual spot on the heat mat and Prune was tucked in close under my arm. But only the occasional hiss was made as a warning as if to say "I'm watching you". I gave cat treats to all and there was no swering or fights of any kind over these precious food items.

Day 2 was hissy as well... but by day 3 this had almost petered out. Noodle was still watchful and on high alert for danger but there were definite signs that she was beginning to accept this stranger.

Day 3 saw her taking a much more serious interest in Prune. Overnight she had begun to get close and to sniff and to lick Prune but also she would hiss quietly if Prune turned around and noticed her doing so.

Noodle was up in the cat tree den. And Pot ran and climbed up and entering the den she launched into full-on purring which could only mean one thing - she was taking a chance at suckling. Then, before Noodle could push her way as she had begun doing recently in her efforts to halt lactating, Prune had also dived in trying to suckle too. Noodle was so shocked by this and got up quickly taking herself elsewhere! Who did this stranger think she was to try to latch on like that. How rude!

Later that evening, I came into the bedroom fresh from the shower and there on my bed in the snuggle sack were Pot and Prune snuggled up and sleeping side by side.

Play times were and are very energetic. The two kittens are totally in their element. The absolute epitome of kittens at play - followed of course by periods of sleep. They play all of the games Noodle had enjoyed with me...and I could see her wanting desperately to play too but instead, her mother role keeps her just watching on.

January 4th was a miracle day. Now it was Prune and Noodle snuggling up in the sleeping bag together, Noodle's arm thrown over Prune as they spooned in their sleep.  Pot nowhere to be seen?

A couple of hours later, while Noodle has been pushing Pot away from her teets she was now allowing Prune to suckle her! That is surely acceptance? They are a family.

Super Mum Noodle
My hope that by getting Prune before Pot goes, so that Noodle would accept Prune as her own, and therefore grieve less when Pot leaves us may well have worked.


Speaking of which... On New Years day, Pot's new mummy, Kirsty texted in order to make arrangements to take her home. 

The date was agreed as Saturday 13th January. As we spoke I also asked had she and her family come to any decision about the name they were going to give to Pot.

They have! Her name is Harley. The name Harley is from Harley Quinn, a fictional supervillain originally appearing in the Batman animated movie. It is a great name for a kitten with bags of character and chutzpah as this one has.

Since the kitten knows her name as Pot-Pots when I call her I've now begun calling her "Harley-Pot" so that she gets used to hearing Harley as part of her name. This will seamlessly morph into her accepting and responding to being called Harley.

I will miss Harley so much when she leaves but I am also so excited about her new life and to hearing how she affects the world of her new family with Kirsty as her mummy! 

Harley - I can't wait for her life story to unfold.

Sleepy Head