“Houston,we have a problem” I shouted down the hallway as I struggled through the door with the dogs and a noisy shoebox.
“What…” Tony stopped as he peered round the door.
Before I could show him inside the box the mewling started again.
“Not a rat?” Tony asked as I opened the box and showed him the scrawny tyke I had just rescued from the skips.
“Don’t be daft,” I snapped back. “It’s a kitten.”
I explained that Xali (our Jack Russell) had sniffed round the box at the skips and when I checked what was taking his interest I thought it was a dead kitten covered in ants. I bent down to brush off the ants and the kitten started howling. No further thoughts needed I scooped up the box, put the dogs on their leads and rushed home.
“I’m going to take his down to see Dr Oscar,” I said grabbing the car keys. Dr Oscar is our amazing vet, who on first sight warned me the kitten may not even be a fortnight old and that I shouldn’t expect him to last more than the day. he was clearly dehydrated and undernourished.
I returned home with a syringe and cat milk powders ready to feed every 3 hours or so.
The next day the kitten was looking less scraggly. The day after he looked even better and by the time the week was out we knew our family had grown again. The next few months were filled with 3 hour feeds and teaching the kitten to poo. Lovely. I spent the summer tired and grumpy but in love with our new kid. The others accepted him really quickly as he grew in size and bravery. We named him Max (meaning we were at Max capacity), but later changed it to Sprout, because that is just what he was a little sprout.
He’s now 7 years old and the most ‘cariñosa’ cat ever with me, although he does cause more fights with the others than anyone else.
I could never leave any animal in such a situation. It could have been the madness that made me do it, but I don’t think so.