I have almost no experience with kittens being raised by their Mothers. I usually come across kittens who woke up and everyone had left.
So just a little spitballing here, thinking out loud.
Some may remember Baby, Baby, Baby. A kitten I found that really needed help.
Anyway, she turned out great and around 3 months ago when she was around 6-7 months old, she snuck out of the house.
I hadn’t had her fixed yet and over the next couple of weeks, I’d catch a glimpse of her running up and down trees, chasing other cats, rolling around on her head being the neighborhood well you fill in the word.
Finally having her fill of amour, she came back to the house to eat, sleep and eventually have babies.
And babies she did have. Started out with 8. 4 died at birth. She hung in there but this was really all too much for a little kitten. 3 more died over the next 3 days leaving here with just one.
Not exactly the dotting mother but if she got up to leave, eat, drink, whatever and the baby cried, she’d go right back in. Ditto whenever she went in, the baby would be quiet and nurse within seconds.
Which was always strange as I could never find more then the 1 nipple and very little milk. But the baby started to grow and get plump if not fat.
The baby is a little over a month old. Loves to gum my fingers and his. Loves to play with his toes – usually just waving them around.
Since Baby Mama is spending less and less time with him, I put 2 wool socks in there and he snuggles up with them even pulling them over himself when he goes to sleep.
I suppose the toe thing is natural I’m just use to them interacting with other kittens.