One early morning as the temperature dipped, a guard at a vacant building thought he heard kittens crying. Kevin followed the sound and came upon two kittens in the driveway to an abandoned loading dock. They were crying frantically, blindly heading in different directions. Unsure of what to do, he boxed them up for the Humane Society.
Happy Cats Board Member Barb and fellow TNR specialist Carmel were there picking up cats. They heard the obvious sound of kittens in distress and went to investigate. Kevin told his story.
Barb and Carmel knew the kittens were unlikely to survive without their mother, so they wrapped them in a sweater and asked if Kevin could go back to look for the mom.
“She’s out there,” Barb assured him. “You just have to find her.”
Over and over, the mom tried to jump up into a hole under the bay several feet above her head, but it was obvious something was terribly wrong with her back legs. As he got closer, Kevin heard more frantic mewing from the bay. Mom cat hesitated, but Kevin is a big man. She dragged herself under the nearby machinery to hide.
Within minutes, Carmel arrived with a humane trap. Kevin showed her the space where the mewing was coming from. They got a big push broom and a light and gently removed three more kittens. Carmel carefully set the trap and they retreated to watch.
The starving mother cat immediately dragged herself over to the trap to eat and in she went. Barb met Carmel at Aspenwood Veterinary Hospital where she was examined by Dr. McCarty. The babies were sent to Ramie, a Happy Cats foster mom, who set about bottle feeding them round the clock.
Named after a fierce Greek goddess and protector of children, Artemis not only has a broken pelvis and hip but also a broken tail. Of all the injuries, the tail is the most worrisome. There are major nerves at the base of the spine and nerve damage could lead to permanent incontinence. She had probably been run over and left to die.
Although her milk dried up during the stress of trying to get back to her kittens, Artemis is now reunited with them. She’s a wonderful mom, always making sure her babies are clean, warm and loved. Ramie is making sure they are safe and fed and everyone is happy.
Ramie made Artemis a box she can drag herself into. She uses it as best she can. The good news is that she may be putting weight on one of her back legs. We may be able to avoid surgery if we can keep her stable and quiet.
Artemis clearly was once someone’s beloved little kitten, because she loves people and purrs whenever you even look at her. Abandoned intact, she of course got pregnant and had no choice but to find shelter for her new babies wherever she could.
The kittens are thriving and ready to be named. If you have any ideas for names (we’ll consider other names for Artemis too, since she doesn’t really know it yet), please leave them in the comments.
If you would like to donate to Artemis’s Fund to help with her expenses and possible surgery, please click on the Paypal button below.
We are a 501(c)3 organization, so your donation is fully tax-deductible. Artemis and her kittens thank you!