Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The perfect diet.....

Watching barn cats look after kittens taught me a few things about "small cat nutrition".  The mother tirelessly hunts to feed her family.  She brings them


in the form of birds, mice, gophers and pocket gophers. 
I really don't like rodents and I'm not good at catching them, so I fed him the next best thing:


On a cattle ranch, ground beef is readily available. 
Three or four times a day, Little Scruffy gobbled up a small hamburger covered in milk.  Autumn also loved the hamburger mixture, and had finally given up on trying to eat the little guy.  In her eyes, he was no longer a mouse.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Little Chicken Legs

Some days, work was too much for 

Little Scruffy Peanut.

As much as he loved running through the grass, it did wear him out.  He was learning to carry himself on underdeveloped legs and feet.  His bone structure wasn't up to par and people would say:  "Oh that poor little kitten! Look at his spindly little legs".
I would say:  "Don't worry.  Once he starts eating meat, his bones will grow".

And that's exactly what happened.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

What's in a name?

By June 14th, Little Scruffy got tired of travelling in the cat carrier.  Giving in to a crying baby seems to be part of our nature, so on the way to work, he was allowed to roam free.   When I opened the cage, the little guy scrambled up my arm and perched where he could see the road.  
Every once in awhile, I'd pat him on the head and say;

"You're such a little peanut!"

More and more, I called him Peanut until the name stuck, but it wasn't fair to change from Little Scruffy to Peanut. Jane had named him first.  

Hence, we compromised, and he became known as

Little Scruffy Peanut

Thursday, January 8, 2015

No one licked the kitten!

By May 27, Little Scruffy's eyes were completely open.  Every day, he was packed up and taken along.  He helped feed, mow lawns, clean barns, and any number of other things happening on any given day, but he wasn't always called

Little Scruffy Peanut.

A 3 year old called Jane happened to see the cage sitting by a fence in town while I worked in the yard.  She played with him for a few minutes and decided to call him Little Scruffy.   His last name came later.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Two's a crowd......

It only took a few minutes to realize that Autumn didn't jump in the box to snuggle!
Little Scruffy moved toward the warm body that he thought might be his long, lost mother.

He got a rude awakening!

Autumn grabbed with her front feet, thumped him with her back feet and proceeded to try to open her mouth wide enough to crush his head!
My gosh!!  Get that cat out of there!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Autumn Broomfield


to before the arrival of Little Scruffy Peanut

Peyton thought a new kitten might ease the sadness she felt with the disappearance of Big Kitty.  Some farm friends, the Broomfields, mentioned a litter of Manx cross babies, so we went to have a look. There in the shop, guarding the cage was the most vicious looking Basset Hound ever seen!  At least she was looking as vicious as a Basset Hound can. Inside the cage were 6 kittens with tails of varying lengths. Peyton fell in love with the black calico that, at the time, had a tail about a half inch long.  She picked her up, and immediately gave her a name:
She called her Autumn....... 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

It's not a MOUSE!!

When Little Scruffy Peanut wasn't in his pretty new blue cat carrier, he lived in this little box.  The milk mixture started to work it's magic, and he began to grow.  His coat took on a healthy shine and it was easy to see, he looked forward to mealtime.  There was only one problem, and that was


the Manx we picked up 5 days prior to finding

Little Scruffy Peanut

Autumn was only 7 weeks, but had a hunting instinct, the likes of which we'd never seen before.  To our utter dismay,

Autumn thought this kitten was a mouse!!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Tools of the trade......

Nobody said it would be easy.  Nothing, and I mean


can replace a cat mother's milk.  Dropping life into this kitten, one drip at a time was tedious work.  As you can see, we improvised and came up with a mixture of Cat Milk and cream with a bit of 2% milk, a cattle syringe for administration and a warm washcloth to wipe away the pain!

He didn't ever learn to suck.  He lost the instinct when he lost his mother.  An inherent will to live kept this little guy going.  What kept me going through this ordeal?

......a little voice that kept saying, "Don't give up!"

Friday, January 2, 2015


Thanks for hanging in there and waiting for another episode from Barn Cat Mansion.  I lost my creativity when Big Kitty didn't return, but it's time to move on.  I talked about a new kitty and we'll track his progress from the day I found him, and gradually catch up on his life.

They said it couldn't be done.  They said, you can't save a kitten abandoned by its mother at 2 days of age!  I said,

"I can't leave him there to die!"

So began the saga of a tiny kitten, lifeless and cold, that I found in the shop at Fox Farm on May 15th, 2014.  He was born on the 13th and abandoned on the 14th.  I saw that he was alone, but hoped his mother would come back.  On the morning of the 15th, he seemed to be dead.  I placed a hot water bottle in a blanket with him and waited for a miracle.  Within an hour, his little paws began to move, and he thought about eating.   That night, I left him in the care of Dr T.  She fed him throughout the night.  My first question the following morning was, "Did he die?"  She said, "No! he's doing ok!"  And so began the life of Little Scruffy Peanut.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Little Orangey Blue Eyes is our 2014 

Halloween Mascot.

Some folks carve pumpkins to resemble cats, but we have a cat that resembles a pumpkin, at least in the color department!:)

He posed in front of the fading autumn hues of the cotoniaster bush, and we couldn't help but realize the part he is beginning to play in the ongoing saga known as

Cattales from Barn Cat Mansion