Since autumn, I have been taking care of two groups of feral kittens that live behind the grocery store where I work. Biscuit and Boo are from one mom (they had a sibling but it died early on) and the gray kittens are from another mom.
The black kitten, Ink, showed up later on, so he really was not a part of either family. I found him curled as tight as possible in the middle of a field one snowy, wintry day. He and Zen Mitten are now buddies.
I have never experienced such a loving creature as Zen Mitten. He is very "centered" and loves everyone.
These cats have been neutered and spayed and chipped. The tips of their ears have been nipped to show they are being taken care of and this "pod" is registered with the state. Because of a lack of foster homes, they were re-leased because it was felt they were well-taken care of and in a safe environment.
Many people help out and they have provided dry, tiny shelters for them hidden in the field.
I can now pet all but one. We have homes for two.
North Carolina puts down more cats than any other state. We have tried to trap the mother cats, but they are old and savvy. Biscuit and Boo's mother is a beautiful and matronly calico with green eyes.
Not all cats are "dumped." Many simply run away, which I think perhaps Ink did. My own cat, Chalk, did.
If you know of people who look after feral cats, don't hesitate to donate a few bucks. Five bucks can buy a lot of food.