These are the latest pictures of Bandit the Kitten taken two days ago on October 7th. In these pictures she is seven weeks and four days old. She is sitting/laying on the wooden window sill shelf that I made for her mother, Socks the Cat, several months ago, out of odds and ends that I had laying around the house.
It was just a few days ago that Smokey -- Bandit's brother -- figured out how to get up on to the shelf, by climbing up a short, 45 degree angled wooden plank from the kitchen counter top to the shelf. He and Bandit both had already mastered climbing up on to the chair which I keep next to the kitchen counter near the sink, so that Socks can easily get to her shelf. While Smokey was the first one to climb up the plank to the shelf, after a bit of a struggle, it was actually Bandit who was the first to discover that she could actually get to the kitchen counter by climbing up the back of the chair, and then bridge the small gap between the narrow top of the chair and the counter itself. In fact, I am not even certain if Bandit has ventured up on to the shelf on her own yet. I placed her there just to take the above pictures.
None of the pictures that I took of Smokey two days ago came out well, so I may try again later today after he wakes up from his nap. Except when they are sleeping, these little kittens hardly ever stay still anymore; which makes it rather difficult to snap good pictures which aren't blurred. Sometimes I have to take about ten pics of each of them, just so that I will hopefully get one or two half-decent ones.
I've begun to notice some differences in the kittens' personalities. Bandit tends to be a bit more of the aggressor when it comes to playing with her brother Smokey. She also tends to be a bit more independent as well, just like her mother, Socks. Smokey, on the other hand, is a bit more laid back, and loves to be held in my arms while I scratch his head until he falls asleep. Bandit likes it too, but for much shorter periods of time. Smokey is the real arms boy. Not only that, but as I have mentioned before, I think that Smokey and I have a closer bond, because I gave him extra attention when he had the conjunctivitis for three weeks. Thank God that is over!
Both kittens have figured out that the big, strange, white box in the kitchen holds their food, and sometimes I get the impression that they are trying to figure out how to open the refrigerator door. Sometimes one of them will sit there in order to send me a strong message: "Hey! I'm hungry! Bring on the boiled chicken breast and the tuna, slave!" Their pitiful whines when they are hungry always grabs my heart. Smokey is always the loudest, and will stare up at me from the kitchen floor with this look on his face which would touch the coldest heart. But then Bandit, as well as mother Socks, will sometimes join in the chorus with Smokey as well. There is always dry cat food available in their bowl, but, you know . . . they are spoiled on the chicken and tuna. I don't know whose fault that is. Not a clue!
The other day Smokey did something which I wasn't quite sure about, being as I just caught him doing it out of the corner of my eye. However, today I caught him doing it again, and now I am certain. While all three of them -- Smokey, Bandit and Socks -- were chowing down on their chicken-tuna mix, that rascal Smokey made a quick, threatening paw gesture at his mother, as if to say "Hey! This is my food! Back off!" It was just a quick, little, harmless motion, but it made me realize that Smokey does have a little bit of greed when he eats.
In fact, one thing which I have noticed about Bandit, is that while she is more the aggressor when she is playing with Smokey, when it comes to eating, rather than share the food bowl with mother Socks and Smokey, she will eat a little bit, and then back away until they are both done. Then she will go back and eat however much else she wants. She just doesn't seem to like being crowded out by Socks and Smokey. As I believe I have mentioned before, Smokey eats considerably more than Bandit, and spends more time at the food bowl. Being as he is a tom, I suspect that he may soon start to outgrow Bandit. In fact, I think that he is already slightly huskier than she is. She is a bit on the dainty side.
Purchasing litter, dry cat food and extra chicken and tuna for Socks the Cat and the kittens has become an expense which I really cannot afford. In fact, as I have mentioned before, given our financial situation, even keeping Socks was against my better judgment. Now the expense is multiplied three times. As a result, over the past few days I have begun to mix in some dry cat food with the chicken and tuna. I don't intend to completely wean them from the chicken and tuna, because they do need more protein than what is provided in cereal-based dry cat food, but I do hope to at least cut back in the amount that they eat. Cats -- like their wild counterparts -- are carnivores and they need more protein. No matter how expensive it may be, I just don't think that dry cat food fully meets their needs. Besides, I like chunky cats . . . not fat cats, just bulky, muscular cats.
Also, I am thinking that now that the kittens are almost two months old, and Socks is pretty much done weaning them, I may soon put the Litter Kwitter that I purchased a few months ago, to good use. I intend to purchase some flushable litter in the near future, and see how it goes. If I can toilet train them, even if it takes a few months, in the end, I will save me about $30.00 a month in the cost of the regular litter, which will be a great help.
The idea of having to find new homes for Smokey and Bandit obviously still troubles me, and it is not a day that I look forward to, because I am very attached to both of them. However, financial realities are setting in, and I doubt that my landlord will agree to allowing me to keep all three cats, even though I do keep the place quite clean.
It gives me so much joy to watch Smokey and Bandit playing with each other, and with their mother Socks, and it is something which I will sorely miss if the two kittens have to go. For now though, they basically have the run of the house, and go wherever they please. That includes romping all over my bed playing "hide 'n seek" with each other while I am trying to sleep, or racing around my computer table, playing with the interesting things that they find on it, such as nail clippers, a pen, a flashlight, a pair of tweezers, etc. In fact, this morning, they were extra naughty while I was sleeping. Upon waking up, I discovered that my server -- which runs this website and blog -- was shut down. I don't know who did it, or even how they did it, but I had to reboot the machine. They also like to edit my documents when I am not looking. What's that? Future cat blog writers? Well, maybe!
Well, that's it for now. I'll try to get some new pics of Smokey when I can . . . and when he lets me.