One of the things I do a lot is watch the Facebook selling pages for Iwakuni for great deals on stuff we can use for the house. One day in mid August one of the ads caught my eye.
I contacted the woman that was trying to find a home for the kitten. She said that there were some people that had expressed interest in her but she would let me know who she thought would be the right fit for the kitten. I explained to her that I had experience raising kittens that needed bottle feeding plus I had no job nor any kids, so I could focus 100% on the kitten which would need to feed every few hours. Jeremy and I got a call back a few hours later asking if we could pick up the kitten the next morning. We picked her up and were surprised how tiny she was. The vet said someone had found her in the middle of a busy street on base abandoned. They had no idea what happened to her mother or litter mates.
Jeremy and I were a little upset when we picked up her because the vet we picked her up from kept saying things like “don’t worry if she dies because that is normal for cats this young” repeatedly. We weren’t going to go into this with that negativity. I had faith in my skills in raising kittens and I had faith in her being a fighter. We took her home and started caring for her. We decided to name her Katniss Everpurr.
Jeremy left about a week after we brought her home. In a way it was great that I had her because she would help me feel less lonely. Unfortunately the day after Jeremy left she stopped eating. She wasn’t playing. She wasn’t toddling around like she normal would. She wasn’t doing anything that she had been doing up until that day. The vet on base wouldn’t see her that day but recommended a vet off base that had evening hours. While the vet there spoke some English, I was worried about trying to explain what was wrong. Dr. Yosuke said that her temperature was really low. He gave her a shot of antibiotics and a shot of ferritin and told me to bring her back the next day if she wasn’t better. He told me to keep her temperature up. When I took her home I got her set up with a heating pad and decided to make a video to send to Jeremy. In the video she meowed a few times. When I played the video back I realized that she responding to the meowing in the video. I made a new video of just her meowing and played it back for her. She immediately pounced on my iPhone. The more times I played the video, the more she became alert and eager to interact with it. After playing it for about 30 mins I tried to give her a bottle. She drank more in that sitting than she had all day. I started realizing that she was probably missing her litter mates. I set her up in her carrier with the heating pad and had the video playing on repeat through out the night.
By the next morning she was back to being active and eating well. I called Dr. Yosuke and he sounded surprised that she lasted the night and said to not come in if she was doing well. Over the next two weeks she really started to grow and her playful personality started to come out. I started realizing she was a ham for the camera.
Just before Jeremy came home, Katniss developed an eye infection. We went back to Dr. Yosuke for antibiotics. On the way back to base, the marines at the gate house asked to take pictures with her because she was so tiny.
She proved to be surprisingly easy to transition from formula to real food. She especially loves her wet food. Although I can’t really tell you the flavor she likes best. I know she likes the light packages better than the blue one or the pink one. I tried translating the packaging but came up with gobbly gook.
Last week though, she scared us. Jeremy and I had driven down to Hikari to practice my route to work. Then we went out to lunch. We were suppose to go shopping with friends and possibly out to dinner but our friends canceled. Instead we went to the commissary and headed back to the apartment. Jeremy had entered the apartment before while I tried to get the shopping cart in the door. Suddenly he started yelling for me to grab some scissors. I grabbed some and took it to where he was kneeling by the vertical blinds by the balcony. Katniss had some how gotten the inch long cords that run in between the blinds wrapped around her neck three times and around her hind legs three times. We could tell she was having problems breathing but her meows were weak. We managed cut her free. Jeremy cuddled her while trying to make she was okay. She seemed to be breathing fine but one of her back legs and paw was swollen to four times it normal size. We decided to take her back to her vet off base, Dr. Yosuke. He was able to see her quickly. He said her neck looked fine and no major damage. Her leg though was still swollen and she couldn’t put any weight on it without falling over. He took some X-rays but they didn’t show any fractures. He gave her a shot of antibiotics and a shot for pain and told to come back in the morning to see how she was doing. The next morning the swelling had gone down quite a bit and was able to walk and play on it but she did have a limp. Dr. Yosuke said that he didn’t see any permanent damage and sent us home with some antibiotics and pain pills for her. This past Saturday we took her back for a follow up. She is as right as rain and back to her old self. The only you would know it had happened is if you look closely at the base of her neck, you can see her fur still parts where the cords had cut into her neck but those are fading.
We love Katniss and are very happy to have her in our little family. Hopefully we have her for many years.