When they took in five kittens they found abandoned in their backyard, they had no idea what was in store.
On March 27, 2016, a “kitty portal” opened in the San Jose, California, backyard of Twitter user @CuriousQuail.
He discovered five smol kittens and knew he couldn’t leave them outside, because if they were left alone they would die from exposure or be killed by the coyotes or raccoons that are common in the area. So he brought them in and learned how to care for them with his partner, @stardusticaye.
Thus, Kindred, Smokey, Possum and Snowapple entered their lives (the fifth kitty was adopted out). And that’s only the beginning.
We knew absolutely nothing about taking care of kittens but since our yard was already a hotbed for coyotes and raccoons we knew leaving them outside meant death or feral cat overpopulation. pic.twitter.com/gGcKx8aCek— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
In a thread filled with kitty photo shoots, @CuriousQuail detailed his journey raising the babies.
We spent a vast majority of time nursing them, keeping them warm and happy and they evolved into these like roving balls of love. pic.twitter.com/iolOMe4svp— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
As they were raising the five kittens, @stardusticaye heard meowing outside in the rain. They found a sixth kitten, from different parents, whom they named Jon Snow. In the days that followed, two more kittens appeared.
Unlike the character he’s named after, Jon Snow had siblings. A few days after we’d found him, this tortie appeared. A third and final sibling (a white one with calico ear markings) wasn’t found until much later. More on her later but this is BISON. pic.twitter.com/ERAWLwJtYc— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
“So in the span of a few months we went from ‘no cats’ to ‘there are seven kittens everything is cats,'” he posted. “How ignorant we were.”
The portal kept opening. One day, five more kittens were discovered in a bush — “The Floofs.”
“The Floofs”.— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
Of this litter, only Sparkle and Topaz stayed with us, the other 3 were adopted out. pic.twitter.com/lhyCe1KiWS
“It understandably became a situation pretty fast but this time we knew what we were doing!” he posted. “Nursing and caring for the Floofs was pretty second nature.”
They got free reign of the house pretty quickly, much to the chagrin of the older cats at first but then they integrated pretty well. pic.twitter.com/IrDxT06CaD— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
Then, the portal opened yet again — leaving four more kittens in the backyard.
This litter featured two long-hairs (Hagrid and Hermione) and three short hairs (Sloth, Skitters and Rainbow). pic.twitter.com/1H9OybqJez— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
After setting safe live traps, the two finally began catching some of the adult cats — siblings, mothers and fathers of the kittens they had rescued earlier. By this point, they were 13 cats deep.
We’re late-season time skipping like crazy here but to do the math properly we were at 13 cats in the rescue when shit got even crazier. We trapped (at long last) Jon Snow and Bison’s feral sister, Lilith, as well as the Mom of a huge chunk of these Kittens (Cutie) pic.twitter.com/bbWaFlJ4tw— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
Enter, the final portal opening: six tiny kittens born under the house, called “The Fuzzies.”
Buuuuut as it turns out, Cutie had already given birth before falling into the safe trap. Under our house. Six new kitterns, discovered via a mewing sound in the bathroom vent. I climbed under the crawl space and pulled ‘em all into a pillow case. ENTER: The Fuzzles. pic.twitter.com/dBvmSnwH0i— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
LOOK AT THEM. LOOK HOW SMOL.
Mastadon, Trout, Selmers and Salamander pic.twitter.com/DKoP1XFBGU— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
So now, it’s just @CuriousQuail, @stardusticaye and their clan of rescued desert cats. You can keep up with their antics (and look out for new portal openings) on their Instagram page.
Every cat that ended up being born in our yard was the result of TWO unfixed female kittens being abandoned by their owners.— december quail (@curiousquail) March 27, 2018
Two cats + feral toms = 24 kittens in one year, and that is with us ACTIVELY trying to trap/neuter/release. If we hadn’t? CATPOCALYPSE. pic.twitter.com/anwCidfPf2
Yes, these cats are super cute — but remember how important it is to get your pets fixed so every home doesn’t end up with dozens of animals.