Right as the winter weather began settling over the city of Boston, one unfortunate black cat found herself dumped on the streets. It was November and just fighting the cold to stay alive was going to be a shock to her. Finding a safe place to rest, food and water were things no longer easily available to the sweet girl. Lost and alone, we can only imagine what she experienced. She managed to wander into the best place possible though–a feral cat colony monitored by Boston’s Forgotten Felines volunteer, Lynne.
In early January, Lynne noticed something different about the sleek black mini-panther.
“This beautiful girl named Raven has been coming to one of our feeding sites for over a month. She was always hungry when she was at the site. Since we feed early mornings and it’s still dark out, it was hard to see her since she is all black and would hide behind the bushes.”
They had attempted to trap her since she was not ear tipped, meaning she wasn’t a released TNR feral cat. Each time they tried to catch her, she either avoided the traps or wasn’t around during their efforts.
“Then last week I noticed her belly as she ran away. She looked pregnant.”
Lynne knew she needed to do everything possible to help get this cat off the streets before she went in to labor. From the numerous past failed attempts, Lynne was worried she wouldn’t be able to get Raven. She was in for an absolute shock at what happened next though.
On January 5th, Lynne set a trap with food, stepped back and waited with baited breath.
“Within 15 minutes she went in. When I brought her home and took the cover off the trap I heard her purring! And when I pet her through the trap she rolled on her back!”
This was definitely not a stray or feral-born cat. Even being pregnant, with raging protective hormones and her unknown troubles on the streets, she was STILL super loving! As happy as Lynne was, she simultaneously fought back anger. How could someone do this to a sweet cat; discarding them like trash?! Pushing down the rage, she channeled it into caring for the local cats that needed her most.
Raven was safe now and would be taken into foster care through the Boston’s Forgotten Felines (BFF) organization. Her litter would be born indoors, warm and protected. Perhaps Raven knew her time was coming and allowed herself to be captured? If she didn’t, she cut it VERY close!
On the evening of January 14th, Raven gave birth to 5 adorable little babies.
Her new caretakers were thrilled to share the good news on their social media accounts.
“Just hours old. Momma and her 5 new babies. Momma and the rest of us are so happy she gave birth inside. Here she is warm and safe with plenty of food, water and lots of love instead out on the freezing street.”
“Wish we could rescue them all. No mother cat should be starving on the street, searching for food and giving birth under a bush or in a dirty box in an alleyway next to a dumpster at any time and especially not when its 19 degrees out there.” – Joni, Boston’s Forgotten Felines
For the next two weeks as the weather raged on around them outside, Raven and her brood thrived inside.
Followers were treated to adorable pics of the kittens and their first milestones. Raven proved herself to be a tender, attentive and wonderful mother. It’s sad to think this may not have been her first litter.
At their young age, it’s difficult to determine the sex of the kitten. Meaning at this time, the rescue hasn’t noted who is male or female. Many people choose to wait a bit before naming the babies, as they did here. Plus, then you can see if they have specific purrsonalities!
As of Thursday afternoon, the kittens now have official “R” names like mom, Raven!
Meet Ripley (darker tiger) and Riley (lighter tiger) to the back right.
Apparently they adorably shield each other from seeing scary things.
Romy (darker cream) and Remi (lighter cream) seem to be the sleepy kitties in the pile.
Every precious shot looks like they would sleep through a hurricane!
Finally, Reese (black) who certainly got the short end of this deal with Riley!
They are just getting cuter and cuter everyday!
We’re so happy they weren’t born on the streets where they surely wouldn’t have survived. The temperature in Boston on January 14th reached a high of 31 and a low of 23 degrees Fahrenheit!
REMEMBER: ADOPT, DON’T SHOP; FOSTERING SAVES LIVES & SPAY AND NEUTER!