Friday, April 29, 2011

Pregnant Stray Cat?

Does anyone have any advice on what to do with a pregnant stray cat?  This little darling girl just started hanging out in our backyard about 4 evenings ago and I'm pretty certain that she's got some hot little buns in the oven (notice her super skinny frame, yet bulging stomach).  She's wearing a cute pink collar, but there's no tag attached, and she hasn't seemed to have left our backyard since we first saw her.  Whenever Christopher or I step outside and call for her, she runs right up to us like she's been waiting for us all along.  She's incredibly affectionate and doesn't act at all like a stray--she's constantly vying for attention and follows us around.

Since we've never seen her in our area before (we have a regular attendance of cats in our yard, but we recognize those which we haven't seen), we can only imagine that she's either lost or that her owner discovered her pregnant and kicked her out.  There are no Missing Cat signs and nothing posted online about her.

Two days ago, feeling responsible for her well-being, we started supplying her with a bowl of fresh water and soon followed up with a bowl of food.  Then, worrying about her safety and wanting to give her shelter, we invited her to come inside just yesterday.  She was quick to accept the invite and after a small confrontation with our own cat Random, she's made herself at home and seems to like sleeping in our office chair.

Now, we're not really looking to adopt a second cat--let alone take care of baby kittens.  Both Christopher & I are slightly allergic to cats and suffer enough from owning one cat (though I complain, it's worth it).  Our apartment is much too small for a herd of kittens to be born and nursed in... not to mention, my piano students are constantly traipsing in and out of the house.

The good news is that we have a neighbor who rescues cats for an organization here in West Philly called Project M.E.O.W.  When we wanted to rescue Random from outside, she helped us by taking him to vet for his vaccinations and neuterization, and housing him in her garage until he healed.  Currently, I'm waiting for her to return my call from this morning.  I'm hoping that perhaps she'll be able to give us some advice or even (cross my fingers) keep the cat in her garage until she delivers.  My major concerns are that if I leave her outside at this point, that she'll deliver outside and the kittens won't have a good chance of survival.  Or, if I take her to a shelter right now, I worry that she'll be put down or spayed while pregnant (an abortion, in essence).  Until I can talk with my neighbor, I really just don't know what to do!

Any advice?  Have you or anyone you know had to deal with this before?