Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thankful Thursday - Thanksgiving Edition


I would like to start out by wishing everyone a happy thanksgiving.  Since the internet is global I know that not everyone who reads this is celebrating, but there is never a bad time to give thanks, so hopefully you will take a moment to remember to be thankful for something.

What I am thankful for is you. Yes, you, the you who would sit and read a cat blog. You who would right a cat blog. You who comment and tell me my kittens are cute, and complement me on the amazing job I do with kittens and call me names that make me blush like a blessing or an angel.  Fostering and volunteering at the shelter puts me in touch with the worst of humanity when it comes to animals.. I see things and hear things that make my toes curl and just make me hate people.. Being reminded daily that there are people who do not see what I do as a waste or stupid helps me do what I do.. so yes, every day you show up and comment you are making a difference in a kitten's life.. It may seem trivial, but trust me there are days when I am pretty sure I can't go on save for the fact that I know there are cat people out there..

So..

Thank you!!

and I'm also thankful for the following..

Jack
Muffin
Eli
Twee (aka Tweedle)
Kit (aka Daddy's Girl)
Fleurp
Skippy
The boys,
because seriously.. they are awesome.. 
The Fluffkits..
who all came out to eat when I was laying right next to the food dish
and a husband who sees value in spending time rubbing a Jack Belly.. 




I have a very full weekend ahead of me, hopefully I'll have time to share with you all before Monday, but I'm not going to stress over it if I don't..

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Yeowww Organic Catnip from NauralPetWarehouse.com


A few of my blogging friends have recently blogged about products from Natural Pet Warehouse and when I saw someone share that they were looking for more bloggers, I contacted them.

Brandon replied about reviewing Yeowww Organic Catnip.. He told me to go to that page and pick out two.  I picked the Fish and the Lemon, but said if I could have the tub of catnip I'd like that - as I have seven cats and one or two toys doesn't go nearly as far as a nice tub of nip.. Well he very nicely sent me all three!!  (I had to wait a bit for the tub to come back into stock, but it did not take long at all)


This nip is so strong the paper was nip scented.. 


Eli is my nip head.. and loved the free flowing nip..




Yeowww is some seriously good nip..and the fish is still being tossed about.  The lemon not so much.  The Crew was perhaps a little confused by the shape... it is also heavier than the fish, and their well known nanner.. 

Thank you NaturalPetWarehouse.com for this opportunity to review your products.. While the products were free to me, the opinions are all my own..

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

One very very long day


So, for some reason I have been mental lately.. Kind of like my keyboard not typing the T key all the time.. I just have been trying to do too many things at once, forgetting things, and being horribly distracted.

I have a couple of huge projects at work going on, and frankly they are taking way too long because I keep getting distracted..

Today was no exception, and after work I had an errand to run after work and I was out way too late meandering through the store because I was distracted..

I got home and had to feed the kittens. The fluffs are halfway into me, and I think we made progress with The Lion and The Melody Lookalike. Then I went down to see ... The Boys..

HEY!! GET IN HERE WOMAN!!
Is she coming in here or what??
I brought my dinner (and my husband) down with me. He snuck in while I was taking photos, and I snuck in while they were sniffing his ankles.. (The boys are so ready to go to their forever home, that they are willing to break out of the Kitten Room to find it - which btw, if everything goes according to plan will be on Friday)

So I walk in and see they have knocked their water over and it is all over the floor, including getting Happy Bear all wet. I called them names and told them I didn't like them any more, and proceeded to wipe it up, and they proceeded to 'help' which means getting their paws all wet and wondering why their paws are wet..

I called them a few more good natured names.. this is part of my letting go of the bond.. it is easier when they are being teenage dorks (©Random Felines) and they are a lot of work due to their havoc making.. I then plopped a can of food down for them and went to the couch and took my pizza from my husband and proceeded to eat it...

Well the boys were all..

HEY!!
Give me that pizza.. I couldn't for several reasons (onions, their digestive systems) so I had to keep plopping them on the floor. DH tried to keep my dinner kitten free and was having a hard time. As soon as he put one kitten on the floor two would be on my lap (and yes, there was only two of them)

By the time I finished my dinner they were frustrated and had gone to the other side of the room to sit quietly and look freakingly adorable (nope, no picture sorry) and look at us with sad eyes.. Issac Arnold cried out sadly and I told him to come to me.. he looked at me questioningly and I said yes, come here you cute boy, and he jumped down in my general direction.

My husband was floored, he didn't think kittens would come if you called, especially with out food.. but then Issac Arnold got distracted by a toy and stopped.. His view of the world was restored.. to which I laughed and called him again once. Issac Arnold looked up and came running to me. Smed looked at us and wondered what was going on. I told my husband to watch and I called him and Smed came running over and spent the next half hour rubbing his face all over my face /nose / neck.. Issac Arnold started to groom DH.. we had a nice little love fest.

It was a nice ending to a long frustrating day..

Getting to know the new kittens


I still haven't settled on names.  I totally want to go the ABBA route, but pronouncing those names and spelling them isn't my strong suit.. so right now we are going with the obvious..

Blue Eye (f)
Crazy Pants (m) This boy does not sit still.. ever
Cowardly Lion (m) He doesn't do anything with out watching everything first.. 
The Melody Look Alike (f) She is also reserved.. 
Crazy Pants and Blue Eye are so over being wary.. they are also so over being cage confined too.. Cowardly Lion and The Melody Look Alike are still not quite sure about this being in a house thing.. they haven't quite figured out that not everything is a threat.. but they will, I'm sure of it..

I cage foster skittish cats to learn how they stand on things.  When I walk in the room if they are at the front of the cage begging to be let out so they can run around, I know they are no longer afraid of me or being out in the world.. if they sit in the back and won't come out I know they still see me as a threat.  I sit patiently in front of the cage and make them climb over me to get out and play, which they all do in pretty short order..

They pretty much all had diarrhea when they showed up, and with fluffy pants it created a bit of a mess.. but we gave baths and had to do a lot of grooming of them afterwards (and still have more to go) fortunately none of them mind it very much.

It looks like ol Blue Eye is already spoken for at this point (got to love the power of the internet) I posted a couple of videos of them playing on Facebook and it got in front of the right set of eyes and it was a done deal.. that is if my husband doesn't fall in love with her first.  The first time she met him she crawled right up into his lap, up his chest and patted at his face.. (yes, I was a little jealous) Anyway.. you can see those videos here and here..



Monday, November 25, 2013

What I know - Finding a lost cat - Guest Post


My friend Rene (from It's All About the Cats!) recently had one of her kitties escape the house and she had to learn a lot about finding a lost kitty very quickly.  She very generously wanted to do a guest post so all of this information is in one place for anyone else who might find them self in the same situation.

What I know about finding a lost cat

On a November evening, our cat Tucker slipped out of the house. As an older cat, he sleeps often, so I'd assumed he was napping somewhere, but later in the evening I realized he was not in the house! After 11 days of searching, we had a happy ending and I found him. I learned a lot about missing cats in that time and want to share it in case you have this happen to you.

1. Be prepared beforehand. Microchip (or at the very least, have a collar and ID tags) your pet. Upon researching missing pets, I learned part of the population is anti-microchip, but it could be an important tool in reuniting you with your pet.

2. Start searching immediately. We had the unfortunate advantage of letting 90 minutes or more pass before we even knew he was missing.

3. Talk to your neighbors! We knocked on every house on the street, introducing ourselves and handing out our posters. I believe this face-to-face contact saved our Tucker, since a neighbor two houses away was the one who called us upon a cat sighting (which turned out was our Tucker!). We found nearly all of the neighbors to be helpful. In fact, some searched with us and offered to talk to others and pass out flyers. Also ask neighbors if you can check their garages or sheds in case your cat slipped inside.

4. Put up posters. We asked nearby businesses, restaurants, and other places with community boards to hang our posters. The more people who see the flyer, the better.

5. Put a classified in your newspaper. We were able to list both a print and online ad for little money. There are still people who read the classifieds and don't go online.

6. Contact your local shelter(s) and vets' offices. I visited our local shelter daily, and had a friend visit another shelter daily. Don't assume they will call you if your pet is brought in. I wanted to see the stray cats for myself.

7. Search at dawn, dusk, and during the night. Cats in hiding will only come out if it is quiet. I found Tucker just after dusk. Call his/ her name and listen for any response.

8.  Use a powerful flashlight to scan the area. Look for reflections of eyes. Watch for movement in and under porches, shrubs, decks, open garages, etc. We told our neighbors that we would be out searching with flashlights. Many of them allowed us to go into their backyards and search.

9. Keep searching (on foot)! Jim and I searched every single day for 11 days! Gently call your pet's name and/or use familiar phrases while walking. For instance, I have a silly song I made up for Tucker and would sing that, along with other things I'd tell him (are you a good boy?) Also, when searching carry extra flyers and treats with you. I shook a treat bag as I walked.

10. While we have read and heard many stories about cats staying very close to home (within a few houses), this was not the case for Tucker. He was found a number of blocks away, having crossed a busy street.  Take any call or sighting seriously and keep searching. We searched two neighborhoods for a week.

This map shows how far Tucker was found from home. Most cats stay very close to home and hide.

11. There is a "threshold period" of 10-14 days, where may cats are driven to come out of hiding from hunger or thirst.  This was true for our Tucker. We had checked the place where he was found daily for a week before he allowed himself to come out of hiding and be seen.

12. Have a support network. I cried on many shoulders, and it helped keep me going. Don't be afraid to reach out if you need support, help, or just want to cry.

13. Don't listen to negative comments! We heard just about everything when Tucker was missing. Many people don't know what to say in negative situations, especially if they don't have a pet. You know that your pet is important, so ignore anyone who doesn't understand.

14. Post some "lost" listings online, but be wary. Some websites just want to sell you "services" or send you spam instead of finding your pet. Read the fine print carefully.

15. Rent or borrow a live trap. Set it with stinky food (sardines, tuna, etc.) near the point of escape. Be sure to monitor the trap every hour or two. While a live trap didn't help us, we know of a neighbor who trapped her missing cat that way.

16. Put out a sign in your front yard. We had our lost poster both on the front door and in a stake in the front yard, so there was no question of where to return the cat.

17. Talk to people on the street--mail people, construction workers, dog walkers, etc. I passed out many flyers this way. These people are walking around the neighborhood and could sight your cat.

18. Post something on craigslist, both in the pets and lost-and-found area. Also consider Facebook and other social media. Ask friends to share your posts. Wisconsin has a "lost pets" page on Facebook--check to see if your state or community has a similar page.

19. Contact the microchip company and alert them that your pet is missing. This flags your account.

20. Put out used laundry (we used pillowcases) or the contents of a vacuum cleaner bag on your property. Cats' noses are very sensitive and it may help him/her home.

21. It may seem obvious, but if you didn't see your cat escape, search your home thoroughly. Jim and I used flashlights to check every closet, cabinet, drawer, etc. inside.

22. Ask friends or co-workers for help. I asked co-workers who lived in different parts of the city to pass out flyers at their vets' offices, emergency clinics, etc.

23. We did not use this tip, but someone suggested using Google voice to create a special phone number that is easy to remember (like FIND-KITTY) and redirect it to your phone number.

We found this page especially helpful in explaining lost cat behavior: http://www.missingpetpartnership.org/recovery-lostcat.php


We want your lost pet to be reunited with you! This is a photo my husband took right after I got Tucker home 



What to do when your cat comes home:

1. Check over your cat for injuries/lameness/etc. If you see a serious injury, please go immediately to a vet's office! Tucker, though thin, was whole and uninjured, so we scheduled an appointment for two days later.

2. If you have other pets, separate them for a few days. Your cat will smell "different" to the other cats and you may need to re-introduce them. Plus, your cat has been traumatized and needs quiet time.

3. Feed your cat small, frequent meals for the first few days. She/he may not have had much food and you don't want to upset the digestive system by feeding a large meal. We also feel it is important to NOT feed dry food. Your cat will need the moisture of a wet diet.

4. See your vet within a few days. We had blood work taken and a thorough physical examination.  We also brought in a stool sample to check for parasites.

5. Keep your cat quiet for several days. Tucker slept a lot the first few days home. We made sure he had access to warm places for resting.

6.Your cat's personality may be different for a while until he/she adjusts to being back home. Let him/her lead the way and do not force anything on him/her. Tucker was especially needy and stuck close to our sides, and we let him do so. He needed the reassurance and frankly, we did too.


7. Don't forget to remove your posters, online postings, call the microchip company, etc. to let them know your pet has been found.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Giving Vaccines to the boys


Part of the adoption fee for cats at the shelter is that they come vaccinated.  The shelter does the FVRC vaccine and the vet does the rabies (per the fact that it is required by law).  I'm pretty adept at giving vaccines so I'm happy to give the booster at the house when it comes due (and if I think of it) so they don't get so many vaccines at once and on a day of surgery as well.

The virus and the sterile water to mix it with
and the two pipettes for delivery
Mixed
Issac Arnold had absolutely no problem with this.
He is such an easy going kitten
Smedley on the other hand, said NO THANK YOU LADY!!
and nearly fell off the scratching post.
Issac Arnold just wanted more attention

Now as you may know from reading my blog I'm not the biggest fan of vaccines because I do not believe that benefits outweigh the risks in every situation. There are many many side effects to vaccines including "VAS" which is vaccine associated sarcoma - a cancer that ended up taking the life of my kitty Ollie.  It is a very very invasive cancer and very hard to treat and contain.  It can be done, but you need to be very aggressive. I belong to a online group of people who have had a kitty who had VAS, and many are very active and this is their cause.  They spend time reading and researching and in more than one case suing the manufactures trying to get them to take responsibility for this and make vets warn people of the risks - how many of you got vaccines for your kitties and were never warned about VAS?.

Well one member of the group learned about nasal vaccines she asked about them.  I mentioned my vet cautioned against them because if they were going to get cancer from the vaccine you wouldn't want it in the nasal cavity to which "Mick & The Boys" replied

I had that same concern for a long time. I first heard of the Heska nasal vaccine back when I first joined this group twelve years ago, and it's taken me from then 'til now to get it for my kitty Boy
In that twelve years we haven't had any cases of nasal cancer that could be associated with the nasal vaccine, and the vets at the clinic say that they've never heard or read of one either. So I've finally concluded that it's probably pretty safe. Even after twelve years I don't feel certain that it's completely safe. I don't think there will ever be a feline vaccine that's 100% safe.

Which I find all so very fascinating.. so I thought I would share with you.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Former Foster Friday - Jack and Twee


I was looking for a disc the other day and I ran across an old disc labeled "Kitten Pics" so of course I had o pop that in my drive and see what was on it.

Some of them made me smile, I thought I'd lost the original of some of the photos on it, so it was a nice find. Some of them made me wistful, kittens that I so wanted to keep, that I remember loving so dearly.  Some of them confused me as I couldn't remember who they were.. (hey, nearly 12 years and 350 fosters I'm totally not surprised)

But I also found


Yup, that is baby Jack.  Wasn't he just a goofy looking kitten?? but oh how he loved me.. he still does..



Then I saw these..


Man it is so hard to believe Twee is nine years old.. same age as Em when she developed diabetes.. Makes me think that nine is the new five.


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Meet the New Kittens on the Block


So I've been anxious to get more kittens knowing that I will be sending Issac Arnold and Smedley to a new home, and nothing says "it is time for kittens to go" more than having too many kittens in the house.. :)

And I got some cuties!  They are totally of size, but they are all fur and bone (no meat) and they are quite skittish.  A few weeks at Casa de Gato and I'm sure we'll have them ready for their furever homes right quick.

I know I have two boys and two girls, but I haven't memorized who is who yet except for one.. the little long haired black kitty reminds me so much of a stray I took in years ago named Melody (who ended up dying of FeLV) that I had to take them.  I also had to take them because of this..


Seriously, how can you not love this face!! I have yet to foster a odd eyed cat, and now I have..


The Melody look a like (sorta)


The short haired kitten (I believe it is a boy) but yet I think this kitten has more fur than all the others  It is so dense and lush.. I don't think I've ever felt a kitten with more fur on it's body.


Seriously, have you ever seen anything this fluffy that wasn't on a store shelf??

The first and the last one are virtual rag dolls, and I wouldn't be shocked if someone did DNA testing on them and Ragdoll in them. They scruff incredibly easily and do not come out of it all that quickly. Some of that may have to do with how freaked they are, but I don't believe all of it.  See they spent some time wandering around in a bramble bush (or four) and as a result..


They came with matted fur and a slew of those annoying bramble suckerstickythingies that make life miserable for long haired cats. The black and white little puff ball had to have his rear end shaved down because apparently he was so bad. Unfortunately whomever did it nicked him and he's got a little wound in his neither region, but it is healing up nicely and he should be fine.. (pronoun used from memory, I could be wrong), but it meant I had to spend an hour or so combing them, pulling them (and one big huge fat tick) off them and they let me with nary a complaint.

They did all hid from me initially, but I've been in and out of the room several times and they remain sitting out for me to see them. They purr when I sit there and talk to them, and I even got them relaxed enough to play


So I gave them a few toys which they really enjoyed but they still won't walk up to me.  I am not liking them in the cage in my office and much prefer to put them in the bathroom, but I don't like the idea of displacing Fleurp from her bathtub if it brings her comfort.  I tried putting something soft for her to lay on in there.. closer to the spigot side of the tub and she started shunning the tub and sitting in other weird spots, so I removed it and she went back to it.  *shrug* We'll see how it goes.

Anyway, I am thinking of calling the two girls Melody and Harmony.. but then to come up with two musical names for the boys.. maybe I should name them Agnetha, Bj√∂rn, Benny, and Anni-Frid.  *grin*


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

"What the?!?!" Wednesday



Yup, Fleurp has started hanging out in the bath tub..

For those of you who aren't quite familiar with Fleurp, she came to me in 2008 as a foster.. she was all by herself and I fostered her in my bath tub for a few weeks because we thought she had a bad URI. Turns out she was bitten by something and as a result she has scaring in her left eye..



Several years ago she developed anemia in the spring. I brought her to the vet and theories were bandied about, tests were run and a treatment developed (steroids and antibiotics) and she got better. In the fall she started showing signs of anemia and I brought her in to be tested again (and again) but she wasn't anemic.. so we just rode it out. The next spring she showed more signs, more anemia, more steroids and more treatment.. and round and round and round.. This last spring I brought her to a holistic vet and we tried something other than steroids and things got better with out them which I am very thankful for. But once the fall equinox showed up she started showing signs again.. they started becoming undeniable (licking cement right in front of me) so I've started giving her additional food and an iron supplement - which seems to be enough to get her through her fall symptoms.. but she started hanging out in the bathroom where I slip her additional food instead of the kitchen where she normally hangs.

But now she has decided IN the bathtub is the place to be. I am constantly finding her in there. It saddens me that the six other members of The Crew will be hanging out in bed with us, but she'll be lounging in the bathroom all by herself.

I am hopeful this too will pass and she'll start joining in again.. but I do have to say, it makes for some very interesting conversations in the house when either I or my husband wonder where the Fleurp is..


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The solution to your pesky Pawpurrazzi problem..


Kitties!!  Do you find yourself constantly harassed by the Pawpurrazzi?? Do you wish you could take a nap with out hearing the annoying click click in your face or stretch out your toes with out direction and lenses all up in your business??

Well I have just the solution to your problems.. Guaranteed to get the pesky Pawpurrazzi off your back for years to come.. 



This is a once in a life time offer.. how could you possibly refuse??

Also good for substitutions when you are sick and tired of being kissed and cuddled as these two can not get enough of it..  You can also count on them to beg for extra treats and food so you can indulge with out looking like a gluten..  They also purr nearly continually if anyone is in need of purr therapy.. 

This unique opportunity is a limited one time offer.  Act now and this could all be yours!!  This offer runs out on Thursday.  Arrangements absolutely can and will be made if you would like to take advantage of this offer.. I am actually heading to Kansas in a couple of weeks and they can easily come on the plane with me if anyone in the area would like to adopt them.. 

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