The kittens were born under a shed, their mommy just a baby herself. At about four weeks old they would creep out into the sunshine to play with each other while their mom stood watch on top of the debris propped up along side of the shed.
The owners of the house had their own problems. No jobs, no money, and the bank foreclosed on their home. They had moved out a few weeks before not knowing they had six newborn kittens a few feet from their front door.
The mommy cat had been a pet of someone at sometime. She had a collar around her neck that was put on when she was young. It was so tight that it left a indentation in her skin and was difficult for her to swallow. She is lucky to be alive.
This is likely what will happen to the six babies before they turn twelve weeks old. A skunk, coyote or fox will probably eat two of them. One will wander to the road and get hit by a car. The other three will become feral and if they are girls will breed as early as four months old. They can have as many as eighteen kittens in one year and those eighteen could produce more than one hundred feral cats in two years.
The new cat colony will thrive until they either get killed off by coyotes, raccoons or other predators, which will also prey on the local domestic cat, dog, chickens, ducks or goats while they are in the neighborhood. If predators don’t kill the cats then there is the possibility that a disease like feline leukemia, rabies or distemper will destroy all of them including your neighborhood’s beloved pets.
Very simply getting animals neutered could have prevented what will likely happen to the kittens. A cat can be neutered as young as ten weeks or two pounds. The cost is usually between $50 and $100 but some local vets have been giving discounts and most of the animal shelters will give coupons for $25 towards neutering.
Many of our animal shelters are full to overflowing. There are foster homes that just can’t take another pet so if a cat is considered unadoptable, which feral cats usually are, they are euthanized.
There are so many victims in this economy besides people so if you make the decision to get a cat or dog make a promise to get it neutered before it has unwanted babies.