The Chester Sheds – Maya and Mojo (Orphans)
Maya and her brother Mojo were found in a shed in Chester, SC. The mother cat had not been seen for several days. When we got the kittens from the Lancaster Animal Shelter to the house, they looked to be about 10 days old. They were obviously malnourished and dehydrated, but worst of all, they were covered with fleas. More fleas, in fact, than I had ever seen on a cat or kitten during intake. I could feel the scabs all over their bodies, and the sink water was red from blood.
It’s always fun to do an intake Facebook livestream or video when new kittens arrive, but these kittens were in such rough shape, I could imagine them dying during the bath or very soon after. I didn’t want viewers, who all love cats and are great supporters of cat rescues and what I’m doing here, to witness that. I figured if the kittens died, no one really needed to know I even had them, so I didn’t put the word out about them for several days.
With most orphan kittens, the goal is to keep them alive from day to day. With Maya and Mojo, it was from feeding to feeding. Two hours at a time. What they had going for them was they are both screamers, so it was obvious they had the fight to live; now I had to give them that chance.
They started gaining weight fairly quickly, but it took two full baths to get rid of the fleas. Within a few weeks, they were using the litter box without fail; although, Maya, at first, would walk over to the litter box, smell it, then squat and pee. Fortunately, that behavior resolved quickly.
After we were entirely convinced Maya and Mojo were litter trained, as with all of kittens we foster, they had the run of the house, which helps with their socialization. They see the sights and hear the sounds of a home as well as find their place in the hierarchy of the big cats, which makes them much more adoptable should they be adopted separately. But in their case, they were adopted together and get to share their lives with one another.