This is our last full day as a chowder of 7 with the 3 blues brothers whose families are all at home counting down the sleeps, champing at the bit for their babies to come home. It’s such an exciting time, kittens are undoubtedly great time-wasters, the source of endless fun, cute as can be, stealing hearts with every gesture & prank. Their families have sometimes been corresponding over many months & weeks patiently watching out for that wonderful pregnancy announcement. We continue together sharing updates getting to know each other watching as Prune’s belly becomes ever larger. In that time of back & forth conversation a meaningful, lasting friendship develops. Finally, with the birth announcement soon comes that precious first sight of the tiny kittens nestled snug with mum. Now the families can follow along as the litter grows & kittens became little individuals. Always wondering which one would become theirs???? Of course some families don’t come along untilCa bit later on, when kittens are already born, however, the process is the same, there are messages or emails with questions and answers from both sides aa the relationship is formed.
This whole process fills me with an overwhelming feeling of love, of gratitude and immense joy. There’s also huge pride of course in the nurturing thats afforded the kittens by mum & eager Aunties so keen to help. But those feelings extend also outward toward the people who are to become the kittens future.
I do ask a lot from the outset be that when I openly advertise kittens or when I am approached for kittens via my website. I question & interview, and I choose. True, I dislike when having to turn someone away, but not everyone can “make the grade” because these tiny little lives, nurtured with such attention are very precious & so their futures must be as secure as I can possibly make them. Make no mistake about it, the people offered opportunity to view & reserve a Naked Sphynx Cat Hampshire kitten are very, very special people.
Once that bond is made, each family honours us with their openness and, for those new to owning a Sphynx, a keen willingness to learn & be the best carer for their kitten. By the time we get to collection dates, which at first must seem such a long way off, these amazing people are 1000% ready to take their babies home .
And it’s that point at which we now find ourselves. It’s true, there is a transaction & a contract drawn up between us; it’s aim, to protect the life of the kitten, but the relationship (for me) is so much more. I’m grateful beyond words for the trust that each family places in me to prepare them and to provide them with a kitten that is everything it should be. I’m thankful too for the wealth of love that is being laid open before each kitten to walk right on into. This is such an incredible, important, amazing gift. On behalf of myself, & Noodle, & Prune, & each of the kittens who have received & are about to receive this gift THANK YOU.
We have visited the vet today. Let me tell you now, that pet carrier was noticeably heavier than it was the last time we visited! From car to vets reception, as often happens, especially when I’m transporting kittens with their little naked kitten faces peering out, there were exclamations & questions from people as I passed by! I do so love people’s reactions to the Sphynx cat!
Arriving upstairs (the lift thankfully repaired!) we went to book in only to discover that their appointments had been entered incorrectly! Oh. No! After all the effort and time taken to ensure everything was booked and smooth!!! Arrghhh! Luckily things were jiggled around behind the scenes (particularly as I expressed very clearly that I cannot possibly not be seen today) and after a short wait: we were seen. Phew!
Just as we did before each kitten was examined and weighed -
That’s 5.71kg in total so fully explains the workout my bicep was getting on the way in! One by one everyone was given their health check, any advisory notes and then received their vaccinations. Just as before this was specified to be without the leukaemia element. Omitting this is my choice for the kittens in my care. However, it’s important to say that should the new families of the kittens want it given, their veterinarian can administer this in isolation. Alternatively, they can just have it when they have their booster jabs one year from now. My cattery policy to withhold the leukaemia vaccine during the first vaccinations is to guard against the small risk of having a severe reaction to this vaccine which their immature systems may then not cope with. Though I omit it for kittens, I do routinely give it to my adult cats from 1 year onward. .
Almost done, photos were asked for by one of the vets nurses then having secured the chaps back into the carrier it was back at reception where I first needed to collect & pay for Floozy’s prescription steroid medication. Next was to ask why I had not yet received any paperwork from PetLog/Tracer following the kittens microchip implants. Unfortunately I was dealing with a new staff member who was learning the processes on the computer system. The phones were ringing and while receptionists were on the phone or dealing with clients at the desk a queue was forming. It was not ideal environment right then for me to be in. Eventually, after I’d given and spelled my name at least 4 times, one of the more senior receptionists was fetched, along with the nurse we’d seen during our consultation. It turned out that NONE of their chips had even been logged!
Glad I’d chased it, I ensured they had the info needed in order to do that & an assurance given that it would be dealt with I was able to leave and get the boys back home. As I drove, I looked at the dashboard clock 4:15pn. Just 24 hours before the first kitten exit!
Arriving home, I placed the carrier gratefully down. Mum and the aunts gathered round eagerly, obviously having greatly missed their charges. As I opened the carriers door, the ladies were keen to enquire “where on earth you been? Your mum’s been worried sick!” As each kitten emerged from the crate he was sniffed & tasted as the adults tried ascertain clues as to their whereabouts (was there food?) and of course to welcome them back.
The ritual of greeting accomplished, the boys thoughts soon turned to their bellies and it was business as usual as they headed straight for the kitchen.
After a feed, each boy now received his week 12 worming treatment. This was dosed as appropriate for his weight & is the final one in his neonate schedule. From now on the timing of future worming treatment will depend upon the worming product preferred/chosen by their family.
Worming: Although the Sphynx is an indoor cat it is still vital to worm them regularly & with a product that is ingested (not a spot on product). This is because even when the Sphynx is living entirely inside, they might still encounter worm eggs which may have entered their environment e.g. via the outdoor footwear worn by their hoomans (who knows where they’ve been?) or they might easily become infected via another pet in the household who does go outside or, they may even pick them up from their food source. And, if the Sphynx cat itself does occasionally go outdoors (eg into a catio or walked on a harness) there are even more sources of possible infestation.
The kitten starter packs are filled, the paperwork & documentation is ready, waiting to be completed.….
Just ONE (Grogu) - TWO (Basil) or THREE (Vincent) more sleeps! I just hope that those travelling have managed to get the fuel needed for each of their journeys!!!
Basil’s family is coming from a westerly direction living as they do in Somerset. Depending on the route chosen they will travel between 89-100 miles to get here. Vincent’s family are coming from East Sussex so need to head east to reach us in Hampshire. Again route dependant, they’ll travel between 79-110 miles (there’s such a lot of variation in some routing). Grogu will be much more local as he is remaining in Hampshire - just 10-15 miles away. Humphrey, when he is collected is headed in a north westerly direction into Gloucestershire.
So now it’s almost the end of this part of our journey. Once Humphrey has his collection date and gone the next 6-7 months is given to Prune to rest & eat good food so that she can fully recover her body strength. She looks lovely but her internal organs and bones need nourishment since her little body has performed a phenomenal amount since May. She grew her 4 babies from egg to birth in just 65 days, then she has given them 84+days of milk production, 24 hour a day nurturing and care. She is absolutely incredible.
So she will get lots cuddles. Tonnes of rest interspersed with playtimes & time on the exercise wheel that she loves so much. Bu the time spring has sprung next year all being well she will be fit & ready for us to consider a new mating for her - & with that a whole new set of stories will begin. That’s a long way off as for now, we are still very much focused on this incredible, unforgettable & amazing litter as we prepare to set them in their way to continue their stories together with their fab families.
Dear boys of 2021: You’ve been a joy. I’ve loved every single second. You have each been blessed having been chosen by incredible families who are all absolutely ready to love you. All we need to do is wish you to be happy & healthy & to continue spreading love & joy with your family as only you can. Send us a virtual postcard every now and then let us know what you’ve been up to and show us how big you’ve become! We love you very much, Mummy Prune, Aunty Noodle, Aunty Floozy & Dee xxx