Nov 2, 2009

Feral Kitten Photo of the Day - Feral Tabby Kitten Pair

Two Feral Kittens by Pagani, all rights reserved

These two feral kittens are perhaps four weeks apart in age but they share a common bond that comes from the need to group together for warmth and protection. We've seen these two separately... the larger silver tabby appears to be the sole survivor of its litter and has been coming to feedings on its own for a while.

Best Friends Poster

The smaller brown tabby kitten has a mostly-white brother and they have been photographed together. It's good that they can have new friends - warmth is always good. And you can't have too many friends!
Two feral tabby kittens photo by Pagani, all rights reserved - please do not take!
"Thank you for watching over us..."

These two seem to be pretty healthy so far. I wish the same could be said for the other group of ferals and their kittens. Right now, though, we're dealing with almost inevitable viral infections that plague feral cat colonies...

Kittens always face various diseases. Respiratory illnesses are very common - not unlike human children, really - but the common respiratory illness here is feline herpes, which is a bit rougher than our common cold - probably more like a severe case of swine flu. Most cats get over the symptoms of feline herpes although some do not.
sick kittens
You can see the classic runny eyes and noses. By the way, I must remind everyone again that humans cannot get feline herpes. It is not a cross-species infection.

As you know, I'm there to feed twice a day. If I see a kitten that is sick enough that I think I can catch it, I will always try. If I succeed, I will at least clean them up, warm them up, give them a flea-combing etc. I will take them to the vet if I can afford to do so.

There isn't really a medicine for feline herpes. A vet may give antibiotics but it doesn't help; feline herpes is a viral infection. A significant factor in survival, however, relates to flea infestations.

Fleas, on their own, severely debilitate kittens and a sick kitten can easily die of anemia due to fleas. Therefore, removing fleas helps a lot. As they get bigger and depending on cash on hand, they can get treatments with Revolution or Advantage - and this has saved many little kitten lives.

feline herpes kitten
When they get this sick, I can often catch them and give them some basic treatment. I've also managed to tame and adopt some this way. Since I'm at my personal legal limit for cats however, these days I can only tame them if there are homes waiting. It can be a heartbreaking decision but there are also some wonderful success stories too. I always remind myself of that.

You may remember that one of our more recent rescue stories with a happy ending involved a little tabby kitten that had respiratory infections aggravated by a massive flea infestation and roundworms (also very common). Read her story HERE ... when I'm feeling down I always go back and read how sometimes things turn out okay. It helps a lot.

I hope you'll hang in there with me, believing that things will turn out all right ...somehow. There are kitties out there who believe...

Rescued kitten meows "thank you...!"


  1. This is wonderful work that you do for these feral cats. Your photographs are beautiful. Would there be any mileage in putting some L-Lysine in their daily food? I have no idea how expensive it is, but have read that it's very effective in boosting the immune system when FHV is on the rampage.

    Thank you for helping these cats.

  2. You are doing a wonderful thing for these feral cats. Three of mine were feral. I know you must have tons of patience.

  3. You give these beautiful, precious cats the only love and kindness they will probably ever know. Thank You!
    One of my kitties, Cricket is a formal feral. She's still a little toughie, but so loyal and loving with me.

  4. Thank you, everyone... the moral support is greatly appreciated.

  5. Such pretty babies...thank you for helping them. I was a feral kitty myself...

  6. Dearest Chriss! I see s many of my good furrrrends have found their way here to meet you and support your good work. That makes me so happy. My husband has just built a three room kitty condo for the ferals who have taken up residence in our backyard. A beautiful white bobtailed mommy brought her three kittens to us last summer. We had them all fixed, and found homes for two, but the third one ran from us and is still here but very shy. This summer another mommy came with her two black kittens. So we feed tham all and offer shelter to more than a half dozen furry ones. This spring we will TNR the newcomers. The white mommy we call Hunny Bunny because she is so beautiful and sweet. She is very tame and must have been dumped because she was expecting.
    I came across your blog because a friend from Hawaii sent me your link. It proves that we often don't know the impact our blogging can have on those who only read the posts...we light our candles and do our best. BRAVO to you!!!
    Love and purrrs from Karla and Misses Peach

  7. You are doing amazing work. What lovely photos you take:)

  8. You are doing such great work for these poor helpless kittens.

    My rescue cat still suffers from ill health from recurring kitten infections. His tummy and upper respiratory system are pretty messed up, even though we've had him for 3 years and he's about 6, so that shows just how devastating the effects of sickness are for kittens, even if they make it they can be sick for life.


Comments are welcome! I always answer questions if I can.