Gogo needs a friend… and gets a surprise kitten!

Gogo is a very shy fellow who is in TCR’s care trying to be brave again. When his caring foster family was told that fostering a second cat might help Gogo come out of his shell, they welcomed Jinxy into their home… and ended up welcoming the first kitten of 2018 to be born in a TCR foster home into the mix as well. 

Written by TCR Volunteer Foster Parent: Laura Spillane

27993064_10160090054045051_6206671437876311811_oI decided to foster Gogo as I have always had a soft spot for orange boys and when I heard he was really withdrawn and practically shut down, I thought I could give him a gentle home, with lots of tickles and time to find his furry feet again (quite literally as he never walks anywhere!). Three weeks in and we were definitely building a trustful and understanding relationship, especially when roast chicken was on the menu, but he still wasn’t exhibiting any kind of cat-like behaviour.  It had taken him all this time to courageously roll onto his back for a tummy scratch and then suddenly remembering he shouldn’t be enjoying himself and cramming himself back into the smallest ball a large orange Tom cat can make, his general position, with his face hidden. Goodness knows what has happened to this boy in the past, but it was very, very bad.

TCR suggested I take another friendly cat on to see if they could bring Gogo out of himself a bit more and help him remember that cats are curious and playful creatures, who are generally fascinated by the world around them. Welcome Jinxy to the home.  She had been surrendered by her owner as she was living in a garage along with a number of other cats. She has a petite little face with wonderful orange eyes, huge long legs, beautifully manicured toes and an awesome purr. She had been at the TCR Volunteer Centre for a few days and had been quite shy, hiding under her cat bed, or anywhere she could find to crawl into.  

I got Jinxy home and let her out into the foster room. I had blocked off under the bed and any chest of drawers (as I had spent many days with a previous foster lying on the floor trying to tempt him out), but after exploring her new habitat she was desperate to get under something, so managed to squeeze under the bedside table between two large cushions and there she stayed, thrusting her feet and face out at me when I went in to see her and purring hugely, but other than that she was happy to be hidden away and I thought it best to leave her to settle in for a few days, so I replaced the cushions with a lower, warmer cushion and let her get on with it.

29214125_10155588060558520_5825372553199751467_nMarch 9th: As we were going to see “Red Sparrow” at the cinema and had arranged to meet friends beforehand, I said to my  husband: “I will just pop down and sit with the cats for a bit before we go”; as was my normal routine before we leave the house for any length of time. I had been in the room, crouched down talking to Jinxy under her bedside table, (with Gogo asleep on the bedside table up above) when she started making a strange noise – at first I thought she was sneezing, but it got louder and louder – clearly she was in pain, so I slid the cushion out with her on it. By this point she was screaming (I had never heard a cat make that kind of noise before!) she was clearly dying and very soon – I emailed one very knowledgable TCR volunteer and rang another – trying not to panic I said “she must go to a vet immediately”. As I was talking on the phone, I was feeling Jinxy all over to see if I could spot anything visibly wrong with her – nothing wrong at all.. but a tiny black kitten was clearly making an entrance! Jinxy looked a little shocked at this surprise package, but soon got on with her motherly duties, which is amazing as she is just a kitten herself really.

At this point my evenings entertainment became far more interesting than the cinema, she was bound to have more kittens and I was waiting excitedly for the next arrival. Nothing. After half an hour, Jinxy was looking relaxed and had cleaned herself and the baby up and I had a feeling this was it, just one kitten – how unusual and what a blessing. I found towels and cut up a fleecy throw, filled up fresh food and water for Jinxy and left the new family to get to know each other. The kitten has been named Sparrow, because I missed Red Sparrow, but wouldn’t have missed the start of this brand new life for the world!

March 16th: Feet like shovels, ears and nose much less squashy and Sparrow has developed a crackly purr. Jinxy is a great mum, highly attentive and leaving the box for longer each time now, as she starts to find her way around the house, so much has happened to this girly in the last few weeks, she has done amazingly well. Gogo, still generally finding he wants to hide from this thing called life though he has started to enjoy pats (but I have to bring him out, he wont come on his own). I pray that when Sparrow starts running and jumping and swinging off him he will start to enjoy life again. Foster mum is exhausted from a week of broken nights, but has worked many little miracles for these three lucky felines.

March 26th: Jinxy ended up deciding that there wasn’t enough room for Sparrow and GoGo in the same home (she is a protective little mama!), so GoGo was moved to a new, loving foster home with his feline foster friend Keskoo to continue his journey.

If fostering is something you are interested in doing, please fill out TCR’s online application form today! Kitten season has started!