May 23: No more kitten!
The mother cat has returned for her kitten so we gave it back to her.
It's actually not a decision I made. April and I were both out when the mother returned, hissing and angry, leaving my father to deal with it and eventually he let the kitten go. April and I were at least spared the moral decision of returning it to the mother vs giving it a human home. Either choice has its ups or downs. I hope this decision sits alright with you guys who sat along for this whole crazy ride and who wished for the kitten to have a good home. I hope it does too.EDIT
: FOUND THE KITTEN!!
here are some pictures:[link][link][link]
It's currently in the bathtub ignoring the food and water and barking nonstop (sounds like an angry chihuahua). April's succeeded in calming it down from time to time but it's still a spazz. It is older and more energetic than I thought it'd be, which is good news. The pictures make it seem misleadingly calm and cute (edit again: Actually, April turned out to be the underground Cat Whisperer, because she totally got it to calm down and even PURR in her lap. Wow)
But yeah, he is pretty filthy.
Could not have done it without my buddy April
's help, thank you for your super awesomeness!!
We finally caught the kitten after HOURS of overturning my garage and setting up barricades of stuff-- seriously, whole place looks like a wreck now. It chose to stay closest to the ground and closest to the wall, aka the furthest and deepest it could get, and therefore the most painful for us. To keep up with it we dug out stuff from one corner of the garage to the opposite. ...I think we deserve some Dip 'n dots after all that.
That aside, it was great to know that I destroyed the garage for a reason other than hallucination; for a while I wasn't even sure if it was still there or not. We moved boxes for a long time before we heard another mew from it to confirm its existence, and I cheered because this meant I wasn't just imagining things on an epic level. Afterwards-- [haha, what an understatement! I mean]-- "Hours of grueling blood and sweat later", April and I walked around the neighborhood asking about the kitten until someone finally told us that they've seen it around before and that it's most likely a stray.
As neither April and I can take it in, we're hoping to see if we can find someone willing to adopt it before we resort to the shelter, where it would be euthanized if left not adopted.
Entry from 2:01 PM: It has been mewing and crying in there, but only with the garage closed and dark. We haven't seen it yet, only heard it. It hasn't responded to food lures (milk, tuna, water). It's made no move to escape whenever we had the garage door opened and we still don't know exactly where it is. Our neighbor's cat had observed for a while from a distance, but is gone now and made no motherly attempts at communicating with or rescuing the kitten, so I doubt it's the mother. The kitten was at one point crying very loudly, even as we approached its general location, and has fallen silent since then. It's been maybe two hours or so.
...I really don't want to have a dead kitten hidden in my garage. Any tips on how to get it out safely?
I also don't know what to do with it if its mother doesn't come back to claim it. I'm pretty sure it's not a neighbor's kitten (since if a KITTEN goes missing, wouldn't the owner ask around for it?) I personally would love to take care of it, but that makes only one of us in this household.
I don't want to scare the poor thing to death by clearing out the garage in order to find it, but if the thing is physically stuck in the clutter and getting weaker, then moving things around might be the thing to get it out. If this is a terribly wrong idea, please-- some cat person out there-- please tell me what to do before I do something totally horrific