June 14, 2021
Lawrence, US 68 F
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Introducing Andromeda’s kittens: Follow the growth of 7 tiny furballs in Lawrence

Note from the Times: We are excited to roll out this new feature on this Caturday: Andromeda’s kittens. 

Olivia Schwyhart, of Lawrence, has been documenting the growth of seven little gray kittens born at the beginning of April. She’s been sharing photos on the Instagram account andromeda.beans, and the Times asked her if she would be willing to document their growth in a series for our publication. 

Follow along with Andromeda’s kittens as they grow on their Instagram account, and learn a little bit more from their human mom here and in future posts on The Lawrence Times’ website.

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Catching up with Andromeda’s kittens: Birth through 2 weeks

Mama kitty came to us as a barn cat who needed somewhere warm to go when the two-week cold snap hit us earlier this year. We named her Andromeda. During that time we discovered she was pregnant, and my sister and I started preparing for kittens. 

I didn’t have experience with pregnant cats or tiny kittens, but I’ve had many cats over the years and I’m an obsessive researcher when it comes to cats. We gave Andy a safe, quiet room away from my other cats, provided her with nesting materials, fed her kitten food and helped her out in any way we could. 

Around 10 p.m. March 31, she started giving birth, and by 2:30 a.m. April 1 she had seven solid gray kittens and one more that was unfortunately stillborn. 

For the first week, we weighed them twice a day to make sure they were gaining weight and to keep a special eye on a runt who was born underweight.  We mark their claws with different colored sharpies to tell them apart and make sure the smallest ones get a little extra nursing time. 

It’s a lot of work for Andy to keep seven kittens cleaned and fed so we help her once a day or so, but she really does a good job on her own. A few days ago their eyes started opening, and just yesterday at 2 weeks old, they were starting to walk around a bit better, although they’re still pretty wobbly. 

Some of them have developed white patches on their chests, and one even has white toes coming in on one foot. We are starting to notice a few who are shy, and a few who are brave and other personality traits.

We can’t wait to watch them continue to grow and change as the weeks go by. 

We have some catching up to do!
More photos and videos from the kittens’ very photogenic first 2 weeks:

Look for more on Andromeda’s kittens soon, and happy Caturday!

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