Taking care of a preemie kitten when the Mother cat has no milk to give and no mental capability to help is not easy. Hershey was still suffering from her concussion. She would allow Miracle to cuddle up to her for warmth. Once when Miracle fell out of the bed, Hershey snuggled up to her on the floor. But all other motherly instincts forgot to show up. So it was up to my mother and me.
We had to feed Miracle every hour the first week of her life. Every two hours the second week. Every three hours the third. And the weeks went on. This was not a ‘during the day proposition.’ This went on all night long. For the first few days, my mother and I would both get up together. But once it seemed like Miracle was going to survive, we decided we should take turns at night. But the first time my mother woke up without me and tried to feed Miracle, the little stinker wouldn’t take the eye dropper from her. Only me.
We also had to teach Hershey to bathe her kitten. And no, I didn’t start licking the kitten myself! Ick! Hershey had not been eating, so the vet had given us this gooey paste that was filled with nutrients to get her eating again. Hershey loved it. So I would put some of the paste on Miracle and Hershey would gladly lick it off. Eventually she understood what to do.
Hershey was still in a serious battle for her own life though. She had a very deep infection in her leg that was immobile. Every day, my mother and I would have to soak her leg in warm salt water and slather the wound with medicine. It was horrific. We knew at this point she would lose her leg. The problem was the infection went all the way up into her shoulder where the vet needed to amputate. He couldn’t cut through the infection without it spreading to the rest of her. So for a week we worked on her leg to try to get her ready for surgery.
Tomorrow, I’ll tell you how this tale ends.