Date: 2016-12-19 04:48 am (UTC)
lederhosen: (0)
From: [personal profile] lederhosen
Various reasons but primarily socialisation.

We first found them on November 1 and estimated them at about 3 weeks old then (or rather, Silverblue did, she's more experienced with cats than we are). So when we saw them again on December 11 they would've been close to 9 weeks. Most of the advice I've seen says that the best age to trap feral kittens is around 4-6 weeks, immediately after weaning, and that after two months it gets harder to domesticate them, so we didn't want to leave it any longer. Also, Christmas break coming up would've made it harder to find homes and vets.

I'd rather not go spay-and-release if there's an alternative; roaming cats are murder on wildlife, and there's already a very high feral/free-range population around here. I think for the mother it's likely to be the only option other than euthanasia, but the kittens are young enough to be domesticated.

In the end they turned out to be easier to tame than I'd feared (he said, having just had a small kitten beg to be brushed) but we didn't know that at the time.

(whoops, hit send too soon)

We also wanted to get them their shots before they could pick up anything nasty, and although we'd been feeding mama they were a bit underweight; I don't think she's fully grown herself.
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