We have 2 queens who have had litters on our rural back porch. A stray
tom killed all but one of one litter and all but two of the other. Since
then, we have locked out all the barn cats except for the two mothers,
who we let in and out at their whim. The kittens are in shelters we made
for the animals to overwinter in. None of the three kittens has opened
their eyes yet.
One queen is pretty feral and won't allow us to touch her. As discrete
as we can be, she abandons her 2 kittens for hours at a time. As I
write, she has been out of the porch for over eight hours today. One of
her kittens has come out of the box multiple times over the last two
days, screaming at the top of his little lungs. They won't accept kitten
formula. They are too young to bottle feed.
The other queen (with just one of 6 kittens left) is very attentive to
her young one. She goes outside but returns quite frequently to nurse.
She lets us pet her, but is otherwise very wary of us.
We are concerned that the neglectful queen's kittens may die if left
alone like she is prone to doing. We can't leave the porch open because
the murderous tom is still hovering around here. I am seriously
considering putting the two neglected kittens into the other queen's box
while she is out of the porch.
Is this a good idea? Does anyone have any suggestions as to how else we
can save these little guys?