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Lost: Babes in the Wood – part 2

Viewed-from-my-wndow-Tinker-2Our little rescued kitten Tinker had been pregnant twice, but we had not seen any sign of the kittens, and four days after the second litter was born we found her in the middle of the road, she had been killed. We called the RSPCA and told them a mother cat is has been killed and the kittens are now 4 days old and we do not know for certain where they are. No one came, no one ‘phoned me back. We were on our own and had to find the kittens. We cleared the undergrowth near to the storm drain and armed with a torch shone it into the storm drain…..it was full of cobwebs and no sign of the kittens. If they had been there, the cobwebs would have been brushed away with the activity. Now what? Where could they be?

Armed with loppers to cut low branches and undergrowth we searched along the adjoining property looking and listening as we went trying to find the kittens. Time was not on our side, they would die if we did not find them. Over the other side of the road was a woodland. The ground was always under water in the winter, and remained boggy for the rest of the year and not a suitable place to have kittens, but Tinker was killed crossing the road, so maybe they would be there?

I went into the house adjoining this woodland and told them my predicament asking them to keep an eye out for the kittens, especially as the first litter was now 3 months old and should be asking for food. We looked along the road for any sign of a track that Tinker may have made if she was constantly coming and going, but nothing! Absolutely nothing! No sign at all that she had been over the road to this woodland. Now what could we do? We were at a loss and we went home, heavy hearted. We felt we had tried our best.

Now we had to bury our little beautiful Tinker and shed the inevitable tear. We set a cat trap at the place where Tinker would come for food in the hope that the first litter of kittens would soon be hungry and may follow their mother’s tracks to find food. There has been no sign of them, they are lost, maybe in the woods, or the wooded undergrowth, but now we will never know. We felt we had lost not just Tinker, but possibly six kittens as well! We were devastated, but honestly felt we had done all that we could.

Monday the RSPCA called back, we explained to a different inspector the problem and she said that Tinker had probably lost her first litter, that is why she got pregnant again so soon and now the only thing we could do was listen for the babies as they would cry very loudly asking for Mum to feed them. Sunday night had seen heavy rain and these poor kittens would have been cold and wet as well as hungry and would now surely die. We walked the undergrowth again and listened. We needed it to be extremely quiet, but because of the speeding traffic and the calling birds, we heard nothing and saw nothing. We had to accept that they were all certainly lost to us. Heartbroken we wrote Tinker’s epitaph on her gravestone in our little graveyard, which reads – ‘Dear Little Tinker, Forever a Free Spirit.’


The full story and many more are in the book “Viewed From My Window” by Patricia Oliver price £15.00 + £2.50 p&p. For more details, contact Patricia on 01202 826244. All proceeds go towards the Veterinary and Welfare needs of the 16 feral cats currently in her care.