A community cat walked into an apartment with a kitten and later came back with a few more.
Linda Zardain from Texas had been caring for community cats in her neighborhood. She would put food out regularly, hoping someday they would learn to trust her.
One of the cats, a calico, began to warm up to her. “She started following me, so I sat down and let her approach me. She did, and let me pet her a little,”.
“Over time, she would come by more and more often. If anyone walked by, or even if the door moved, she would flee. She was still very afraid.”
Linda saw a glimmer of hope knowing the cat was trying to be friendly with her. She started to spend more time outside with the cat she lovingly named Callie. With lots of patience, she was able to pet her, sit with her, and their bond began to grow.
Eventually, the calico would stay with Linda even if something outside frightened her. “Although she was originally feral, she was starting to love, and I thought she would make a great pet.”
Around that time, Linda noticed the cat had a belly bump — Callie was pregnant. She tried to coax her into her home and set up a birthing box for the expectant cat mom. Callie showed up one Sunday but quickly left.
Linda didn’t see her for a few days until a neighbor told her that he had spotted a cat carrying a kitten outside. Thinking it was Callie, Linda ushered her own cats into her room, opened the door and went to find the cat mom and her new babies.
A minute or so after the neighbor left the scene, Callie came out of hiding, carrying a kitten with her. She walked into Linda’s apartment and went directly to the birthing box. “I was shocked, as nothing like this has ever happened to me. I petted her and the baby.”
A little while later, Callie got up and went out the door. One by one, she brought the rest of her litter into the apartment — five little kittens made it safely into their new abode.
“She trusted me with them and her. She sometimes would get up mid nursing for affection, and the only way I could get her to go back to the babies was by sitting by her and petting her while she nursed them.”
“Even though the kittens had their mom, I was so anxious for them to live that I watched Hannah Shaw’s (Kitten Lady) videos for things to look out for,” Linda said.
“I went into overdrive keeping tabs on them looking for any sign of things going wrong. I am thankful they lived. They brought me so much joy.”
A few days after Callie and her kittens moved into the apartment, it started pouring outside. Linda was glad the little family had found a safe home just in time.
“She brought them into me about three days before some severe storms hit,” Linda said. “She was a great mom to her kittens, and would tell me if she was worried about something.”
The little family of six really blossomed in foster care, and the kittens grew by leaps and bounds.
Watch their journey in this video:
Linda never planned to have another cat. While she was looking for a potential adopter for Callie, she realized the sweet mama had already found her perfect home.
“I have kept the momma as she is still very shy with others but loves me very fiercely,”.
“She is quick to purr, and just loves being close to me.”
It took many months until all the kittens were adopted. “They are about eight months old now, and in their loving homes.”
“I never thought I could foster. It was amazing.”