Tuesday, 7th of June 2022. We decided to finish the unknown hiking trail at Mont Limon, the highest peak in Rodrigues. But our plans of having a casual little hike with no trouble were thwarted by the criminal who decided to dump their kitten next to the trail. This is the rescue story of a dumped kitten we (temporarily) named Limon Confit.
- 1 Meows on the Alternative Ascent to Mont Limon
- 2 Freeing a Dumped Kitten
- 3 Walking Down + Contemplating the Next Steps
- 4 Naming the Dumped Kitten
- 5 Pizza + Chicken Spam Time!
- 6 Driving Limon Confit to Mourouk
- 7 Finding a Forever Home for Limon Confit
- 8 A Night of Kitten Care
- 9 Adoption Day is Here!
- 10 Driving the Dumped Kitten to Port Mathurin
- 11 Videos of Dumped Kitten Limon Confit’s Rescue
- 12 Want to Spay/Neuter a Cat/Dog in Rodrigues?
- 13 Thanks for reading! Consider buying me the ✨✂️snip✂️✨ for a dumped kitten or six
- 14 Thanks for stopping by once again. Wish to share?
Meows on the Alternative Ascent to Mont Limon
Almost two months after our first visit to Mont Limon, we were staying in Mourouk on the south coast. I still wanted to check out the alternative ascent to Mont Limon and it’s on the way to Mont Lubin, which is where the nearest big shops are from Mourouk. So we drove our scooter up to the trailhead and began the hike.
The clear hole in the forest appeared to be even clearer than before like someone had maintained the trail. Though I had said it’s important to wear long pants on this hike because of the spiny plants, that information now seemed outdated. This longer route goes a little more up and down than anticipated and some parts were a bit muddy and slippery. We encountered two other tourists on the trail who had apparently run into some spiderwebs. I guess this wind tunnel-like shape of the trail is perfect for the big spiders of Rodrigues to capture loads of food. A bit after that, we heard some meowing of an adult cat on the left side of the trail. We didn’t check it out.
Once we reached the arguably better viewpoint, I could confirm someone indeed recently walked here with one of those plant whacker machines on a stick. This alternative ascent/descent was now a legit option from here.
We walked up to the peak of Mont Limon one more time. Since Jonas hadn’t felt so good on the ascent, I asked him if he wanted to walk down to the scooter the way we came or go down the shorter trail and walk via the asphalted road. He wanted to return the way we came, even though some sections are a bit steep and slippery.
Freeing a Dumped Kitten
Once we came past the meowing again, Jonas stopped walking to listen. The meowing sounded like a cat that was stuck. Maybe we could free them. He walked into the forest toward where the meowing came from. Good thing we wore long pants for this little sidequest.
I walked into the forest after him and asked if I should lead the way from here. We were really close to the source of the meowing. Then I saw a bag on the forest floor and had a very bad feeling about this. I grabbed my phone to film what I suspected was a crime scene. Yes, the meowing came from one of those woven plastic sacks like you use for serious kilos of rice. I stopped filming and undid the knot in the bag and out came a cute kitten!
What fucking monster does this?
They immediately walked off into the forest, clearly disoriented and afraid. I looked into the bag if there were other (dead) kittens, but this was the only one. There was just a dirty rag in there and the smell of pee. If someone trapped me in a plastic bag, threw me into the forest, and left me to die a slow death of suffocation, I would also piss and shit myself.
Because the dumped kitten had some kind of collar on, I wanted to capture the kitten again to take it off. If the kitten would go live out in the forest here, they would at least be able to grow to a full-sized cat without choking on the collar and also not get stuck on plants.
The kitten was really scared but friendly, so it took some convincing before they came out of the forest. I scooped up the kitten with two hands and they kind of immediately submitted. This is not a feral cat at all. They meow loudly, but they don’t hiss at us. Jonas took off the two collars, which were scraps of cloth, while I held the kitten and petted them. They started purring immediately.
Afterward, I petted them some more and considered what to do next. Jonas would want me to leave this kitten here in the wild. I want to find them a forever home with a loving family in Rodrigues. I didn’t think the kitten could learn to survive here.
Walking Down + Contemplating the Next Steps
We began to walk down the trail and the dumped kitten followed us. Jonas was a bit irritated by this. He thought the adequate amount of kitten rescue is to free them, untie their collar, and then walk away. But since the saga of Choriza, I’ve watched so many foster kitten videos that I know that this kitten can probably not thermoregulate very well. They might die of hypothermia. Also, even if this kitten survives out here, it’s yet another cat that’s harming the delicate ecosystem of beautiful Rodrigues. No, this cat belongs in someone’s home.
The kitten followed us down the trail and always walked in front of our moving feet. We tried hard not to trip over the kitten or kick them. I once accidentally kicked them and immediately picked them up to apologize and make sure they were alright.
Slowly we made our way back to the trailhead. I put the kitten on a tree and they started scratching their nails on the bark and then jumped down. I sat down in the grass and the kitten – still meowing – wandered around and came back to me and my warmth. Jonas was raging hungry by now. The plan was to go to Mont Lubin, eat pizza, and do the shopping. If I’d walk to the scooter with him, the kitten would follow onto the road and get run over by traffic. So I told Jonas to go eat a pizza without me. I wasn’t really hungry.
I held onto the kitten while he walked to the scooter until he drove off. The kitten walked a bit toward where Jonas had walked and meowed some more, but then returned to me to sit on my lap. They were losing their voice after so much meowing for help. The next meows were all very soft and raspy.
I used our trusty Aldi bag as a cover for my legs so the kitten doesn’t knead biscuits directly on my hiking pants. A little clothing damage is inevitable from kitten handling. I messaged Birgit from Aussenposten Rodrigues on Twitter about the shelter/veterinary situation on Rodrigues.
Naming the Dumped Kitten
While the kitten was sitting in the grass cleaning themselves, I was thinking about a name for the kitten. We haven’t fed the kitten anything yet, so we can’t name them after their first food—as is our tradition. So next is to name them something descriptive (“pirate kitty” for a one-eyed cat). But this kitten is just a skinny tabby that looks healthy and doesn’t have a weird thing about them. Finally, we name cats after the place we find them. But Mont Limon isn’t a very good cat name. One of our favorite Rodriguan condiments – Limon Confit – is a good cat name! Here’s a picture of the condiment with a comparison to the kitten of the same name:
Meanwhile, Jonas was getting a pizza, doing some of the shopping, and getting in contact about the kitten with our host in Mourouk and one of our favorite persons on Rodrigues, Claire from Rodrigues Friendly Café. I tried to make them drink water from my cupped hand, but that wasn’t accepted. Limon Confit was purring in my lap and curling up like a shrimp. They had cleaned themselves very well and didn’t smell like panic piss anymore. I don’t even think they had fleas, which is incredibly rare. What an adoptable kitten.
My first guess as to Limon Confit’s age was 8 weeks. Their eyes were already the adult color, the teeth were fully formed, and there was no more triangle tail. Watching all these kitten videos for hours and hours paid somewhat off. I just couldn’t for the life of me figure out the gender of Limon Confit. My best guess is that they’re a boy, but that’s also the reason why in Portugal they renamed Chorizo to Choriza. In the end, it doesn’t really matter. As long as Limon Confit will get the ✨✂️snip✂️✨ one day.
Pizza + Chicken Spam Time!
I was messaging Birgit when Jonas sent me a message with a picture of chicken spam. He couldn’t find cat food at the Super Cash in Mont Lubin. This was the next best thing. He made sure it wasn’t full of spices, as chorizo sausage is. Jonas returned a bit later with some groceries and a pizza box. He had no clue how he managed to carry all this shit on the scooter alone.
He plopped down in the grass with the pizza and gave me the tin can of chicken spam. Jonas had no patience any longer and opened the box to reveal a steaming hot three-cheese pizza that smelled like food express delivered from heaven. He was freeing up a slice for himself when Limon Confit was making their way to the pizza box about to take a bite of the cheesy goodness. Meanwhile, I was struggling to open the can of chicken spam and snatching the kitten away from the pizza several times. Once the chicken was open, I put the kitten in front of it and they immediately understood the assignment.
I have no idea how I managed to keep my hands clean from the chicken spam business, but I was ready to eat a slice of pizza myself too. It was delicious and definitely hit the spot. And Limon Confit was quietly eating the top of the spam. The poor little one, so hungry. I used the leftover lid of the spam to make a little water bucket and the kitten started drinking from it. Finally, I managed to rehydrate this poor dumped kitten.
Driving Limon Confit to Mourouk
After the meal, we had to make some new tough decisions. We didn’t have a message yet from our host in Mourouk about taking Limon Confit home for a bit until we’d find a forever home for the kitten. Claire was asking around if anyone wanted a kitten and Birgit had made a public Facebook post about them. I knew that whoever would adopt Limon Confit, I will pay for the spaying/neutering procedure for them.
I couldn’t wait on this hill forever, so I told Jonas how we could transport the kitten to Mourouk safely, where we could get on our computers and try to find a home. The idea was to use the lid of the pizza box to make a little platform inside the Aldi bag. And then I would use one of my latching straps to tie off the top of the Aldi bag so I could put it on my shoulder for the drive downhill.
Yes, this would mean re-traumatizing the kitten by putting them in a closed bag, but this one is fabric and very breathable. The most important thing is to make sure the kitten cannot escape the bag, run into traffic, and get murdered with our good intentions. That would destroy me.
Jonas wasn’t a fan of all this, but now it was my responsibility to take care of the kitten and find them a forever home. We put the half-eaten chicken spam inside our empty food box. Jonas ripped the pizza box, I made a nice little platform and put Limon Confit inside, and he held the bag shut while I tied off the opening. There was loads of protest meowing, but it had to be done.
We walked to the scooter and put the improvised cat food in the seat with the other pizza box half. That could be a nice litter box once we’re home. We hopped on the scooter and Jonas started the drive down to Mourouk. I held Limon Confit inside the bag and meowed back at them to maintain dialogue.
Within the first 500 meters, Limon Confit had made a hole for their little head to stick out. Always remember that cats are liquid. I wasn’t a fan of this, so we stopped at a bus stop and I redid the knot. We continued the drive, but Limon Confit had made another attempt at jailbreaking the Aldi bag. What a little escape artist. Luckily, they didn’t try to jump out of the bag while we were driving. Maybe they understood we were trying to help? Maybe they just wanted to feel the wind in their whiskers on the scooter?
At another bus stop, I again fixed the improvised cat carrier. This time, I held the bag shut with my hand as well to make sure I could stop the next escape attempt. It held and we drove back this insanely beautiful road to Mourouk in peace. Limon Confit even stopped meowing, which of course got me worried that they were vomiting and choking or something else. But perhaps it’s the best-case scenario: Limon Confit could also have succumbed to this intense day and simply fallen asleep.
Finding a Forever Home for Limon Confit
Back at home, I first prepared a feeding station outside our house on the porch. I continued to sit outside with Limon Confit while Jonas went inside and joined every Rodrigues Facebook group he could find and made posts about the kitten.
Our host came by the house and he wasn’t so positive about what we did and our situation. And he was sure we wouldn’t be able to find the kitten a home. Jonas asked if it would be possible to keep the kitten locked in our bathroom for safety and hygiene. This is something all kitten rescuers and foster families do since it’s the best space for a kitten to calm and settle down. But he disagreed and asked if we could put the kitten up in the shed. He gave us one week to find the kitten a home. Or else? Not sure, I’d want to know. But we must stay positive about this. And honestly? Limon Confit is so cute, any cat lover will love them.
Jonas quickly got a response on Facebook and began to write messages. I used the footage I took to create two short YouTube videos that I also directly uploaded on Facebook in a post. Birgit’s public post also got a response.
Birgit also sent me the contact details of a certain Karen Samoisy, who is the closest thing to a pet veterinarian on Rodrigues. Most veterinarians on the island are livestock vets, which is not surprising judging by the sheer number of goats, cows, and sheep on the island. Karen Samoisy helped Birgit’s dog Miss Molly cross over the rainbow bridge a few weeks earlier. Though she doesn’t have a clinic, she and her husband are capable of sterilizing cats and dogs in people’s homes or at their own home in Mont Lubin. I’m not exactly sure of how it works.
We called Karen Samoisy and Jonas did most of the conversation since I’m too dumb to hold a phone call. She told us the price of 1200 MUR for a female cat and 800 MUR for a male. That’s about €25 and €17. But! She told us she only sterilizes kittens at 5 or 6 months old. She asked how old we think the kitten is, and though I knew Limon Confit was already older than Choriza, I said “older than five weeks” even though I knew they’re probably older than eight weeks. From my YouTube channels, I know you can sterilize kittens at the eight-week mark. But if it’s a no for a two-month-old then I’m not going to argue with that, of course.
In the evening, we had two serious inquiries into Limon Confit. Our Facebook spamming had born fruits. It’s a first-come, first-serve situation for us, so Jonas talked mostly to someone named Maria with whom he’d been in contact for a few hours. We sent more photos and videos and it seemed very serious. We decided to meet at her house in Port Mathurin at 15:30 the following day.
A Night of Kitten Care
In the evening, we cooked human food at home and I occasionally visited Limon Confit for pets, fresh water, and mashing up the chicken spam. Ants were going after it as well, which didn’t seem to bother the little kitten. The food was slowly going down and I thought it would be great if Jonas could pick up some more food the following morning before kitesurfing class.
I made the shed as kitten-friendly as possible. I found an old t-shirt there to make a bed and used the mop bucket from our home to make a nest for the kitten with a roof. That should keep them dry and safe. One piece of the pizza box was a food section and the other was intended as a litterbox, but I have no idea how to do the latter as I’ve never actually been a cat parent before.
The shed isn’t a safe place. There are saws for woodworking, loose nails on the floor, and loads of places where a kitten could get stuck. It’s a good thing Limon Confit is a little older and very healthy, so they can save themselves from falling behind a pile of wood.
At night, it started to rain very heavily with the strong wind this corner of Rodrigues is known for. Dogs were barking down the street. In a nighttime panic concerning Limon Confit’s safety, I went out at 3:40 to see if they were okay and to make sure everything is rain and predator-proof. When I walked in with my flashlight, the kitten woke up from their safe shelter in the mop bucket. They came to me loudly meowing and purring in anticipation of pets.
Limon Confit looked absolutely fine with this situation, for now. I wasn’t happy with how loveless and unsafe the shed was, but I wasn’t allowed to bring them inside. I installed a wide plank over the mop bucket to provide more protection from the tiny splats of rain that entered here. The t-shirt they slept on was completely dry. Good.
But the one thing I worried about was a dog getting in to eat the tiny scraps of chicken spam. I found four wooden table legs and stacked them in front of the door hole to disincentivize anyone from coming in. I hoped this will be good enough to keep Limon Confit safe.
Adoption Day is Here!
Wednesday, 8th of June 2022
The next morning, Jonas got up early and went outside to get the swimming clothes from the clothesline. He went inside the shed and Limon Confit came out from under the workbench to greet him. He petted Limon Confit a little, moved around the scraps of chicken spam, and then left. They didn’t follow him over the wooden beams.
Jonas made coffee while I got up from my rough night. I put on my kiting clothes and went with my coffee outside to drink it in the presence of Limon Confit. They hopped over the beams without a problem and explored the garden a bit more before coming to my lap for scritches. Jonas drove to the nearby shop to buy more chicken spam. The idea was that as long as the basic needs were met, Limon Confit wouldn’t start roaming the neighborhood. It would be tragic if they walked into traffic just hours before potentially being adopted.
After kiting, we stopped at the shop again because I wanted to feed Limon Confit a scrambled egg—no oil, no salt. Though the chicken spam is greatly appreciated by the kitten, I think it contains too much salt and possibly other stuff that’s not good for them. Once at home, I scrambled the egg and waited till it wasn’t hot and then brought it to the kitten. I put some on my hands to try to hand feed the kitten – something I’ve seen in YouTube videos for ‘spicy kittens’ – but as an already socialized kitten, Limon Confit also thought that was a bit weird. The scrambled egg was warmly received.
I cleaned Limon Confit a bit and tried to establish if there were any fleas. I couldn’t see any evidence of that like live fleas or blood left behind by them. There was some dirt in the ears that I partly cleaned with the help of Jonas after making a purrito out of Limon Confit in my sarong. It wasn’t perfect, but they were presentable.
Driving the Dumped Kitten to Port Mathurin
Next, it was time for the big drive. Our host had given us a small cardboard box after kiting class. We already had a big roll of tape to make sure the box is completely closed from tiny paws that can reach through anywhere. The box had been in the shed since we came back so Limon Confit could smell it. I had also put the bowl of scrambled eggs inside for familiarization.
Jonas joined me in the shed with the tape and scissors. I punched two holes smaller than the paws in the top of the box for ventilation. I put my sarong at the bottom and the old t-shirt Limon Confit had been sleeping on at night in the bottom for coziness. Now it was ready for a kitten. I expected a struggle and escape attempts, but Limon Confit went into the box, we shut it, and there were no tiny paws reaching through the open edges while Jonas taped the box. Jonas didn’t really agree with taping it shut as much as I wanted, but I told him that we really couldn’t risk any escape attempts. Limon Confit let out some meows from the box and I made the ventilation holes a little bigger with my fingers.
We then hopped on the scooter and began the drive to Port Mathurin. Limon Confit meowed a little until they stopped. I was a bit worried about that and tried to meow at them for a reaction. Once we were up the mountains in Palissade Ternel, we made a short stop and I meowed until they responded. We continued the drive down to Port Port Mathurin and the kitten was again quiet.
Finding the address of the prospective adoptive family wasn’t hard. We parked the scooter and walked to the right side street. I made the holes in the box even bigger and opened the tape on one side of the box and looked in Limon Confit woke up from a little nap. They were just sleeping the entire way! What a perfect cat.
The lady came down from her house, thanked her for responding so quickly, and we had a little chat. We opened up the box fully and Limon Confit popped their head out with curiosity and was ready for pets from their new mom. There was a connection and lots of purring.
We talked a bit more about how we found this dumped kitten in the forest, how I’d like to pay for the spay/neuter, and our wish that Limon Confit will now have a nice life. Maria said she has one older cat at home and two dogs that love cats, so it will be a new situation but hopefully, it will be alright. We took out my sarong and the t-shirt from the shed from the box to take home and gave one unopened tin of chicken spam that we still had. We thanked her a lot for this and gave Limon Confit one last goodbye pet.
What a happy moment.
Videos of Dumped Kitten Limon Confit’s Rescue
Want to Spay/Neuter a Cat/Dog in Rodrigues?
If you’re in need of a pet veterinarian who can do sterilizations in Rodrigues, get into contact with Karen Samoisy and her husband who live in Mont Lubin. To unlock their phone numbers, please sign up for my newsletter with your email address:
I don’t know the price for dogs, but for cats, it’s 800 Mauritian Rupees to sterilize a male and 1200 Mauritian Rupees to sterilize a female. They need to be about 5 to 6 months old for the procedure, which might be a little late since kittens can have kittens of their own after only 4 months of age when they reach sexual maturity. That is why it’s important to keep them safe at home away from the precious birds and other horny cats.
Thanks for reading! Consider buying me the ✨✂️snip✂️✨ for a dumped kitten or six
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