When Ida Floreak was woken up in the middle of the night by the sound of a cat meowing outside, she thought it was her own cat, Bruce.
But then she remembered the stray cat Salami that she’d been intermittently feeding for a few weeks, and went down to check she was okay.
Sure enough there was Salami at the front door, but she didn’t just want to come in for some kibble, she actually wanted a safe space to give birth to her kittens.
Ida, who lives in New Orleans, told Bored Panda: ‘One day, Salami started meowing insistently at my door at 5am.
‘I had started feeding her at this point so she knew to come by, but she had never been so insistent and certainly never so early.
‘Salami came inside and just meowed at me for a few hours so I figured something was about to happen; she was so round at that point.’
By 9am, Salami had had her four kittens, and artist Ida was certain she’d do everything she could to keep them safe.
Ida had been trying to gain Salami’s trust for a while with the endgame of getting her spayed and vet checked, but she ended up having a litter (with Ida nicknamed the Deli Meats) before any of this could happen.
It’s rare for a cat to seek out a human before having kittens, as they’re normally very private animals.
Salami also bucked the trends by sticking around with Ida afterwards rather than hiding away, and although the four babies have now gone to friends, mama cat is still living with Bruce and Ida.
‘I was able to get her fixed and vaccinated, and she and Bruce hang out all day together,’ said Ida.
‘She’s adjusted really well, and is a very sweet and loving little cat. All of the kittens have gone to friends: one is in Mississippi, and the other three are all in my neighbourhood. I’m glad I get to still have a connection with them.’
After Ida shared the story online support poured in for her – both for giving Salami somewhere safe to have babies and also getting her spayed.
One person wrote: ‘Thank you for opening your door and your heart for Salami and her kitties! You are a special person!’
Another said: ‘Thank you for rescuing this darling girl. So pleased she came to you. I have had this same experience, we are the chosen ones. Salami trusted you.’
Not only did Salami gain some babies that day, she also got a home. And all she needed to do was ask for it.
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