Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Bestest Christmas EVA!!

Dudes! Let me tell you the story of the bestest Christmas gift EVA! I don't know how momma got it for us without knowing it was in the house, because she was rather annoyed when we got it.. Maybe Santa Paws is real after all..

She was laying in bed and heard Twee scratching at something behind her nightstand. She thought that Twee was just after one of her toys that she had previously stashed back there (Twee has a habit of pushing her toys into places she can't get to them) but when Fleurp got involved and the action moved a bit, she started to investigates what we haz'd.

She knew something was up.. this was no ordinary toy. This was the bestest toy EVA!!

Momma initially thought it was dead, and for a split second thought about letting us dispose of it*, but then she saw it move and sprung into action. Daddy was quite confused and didn't know what to do so Momma had to explain everythings and made him get a box to trap it in.

We tired that mouse right out, so Momma had no problem getting it into a container but she was a little confused as to what to do next. She knew that if she just put it outside the mouse would come back in. With all the snow out there, she was a little sad to let it out thinking she would just be making a mouse-icle. She gave the mousie a little cheese (which it was too traumatized to eat) and drove it down the street and tried to at least put it near a tree. She failed miserably and still fears she made a mouse-icle, but she did the kindest thing she could think of.

Now, we are all on high alert for additional gifties from Santa Paws.. We know that there must be more out there..

* If I wasn't worried about my neighbors using mouse poisons, I would be inclined to let my cats eat a mouse they legitimately killed. But I am worried, and they didn't kill it, and I just couldn't let it suffer.

Right after we moved into this house I found some mouse poop, but I hoped that it was from a previous invasion that was already taken care of. We had already bought the house so it wasn't like we could force anyone to fix anything, and I was avoiding the whole thing hoping that it wasn't a thing - or if it was the smell of six cats in the house would make them flee. Now that I know that it is totally a thing, getting someone in here to take care of this is going to be a high priority.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Our Christmas Tree 2017

With everything going on here I didn't know if we were going to be able to get any decorating done. My husband decided we at least should get the tree up this year so he did that a few days ago.

If you have been visiting this blog for any length of time you know we decorate our tree with cat toys instead of ornaments. I have boxes and boxes of ornaments but a few years ago I couldn't face unpacking them all only to pack them all back up a few weeks later (we were late in decorating) so I just threw cat toys on the tree and I loved it so much that we have done it every year since.

One reason we were late in getting the tree up - despite our horribly busy schedules - is the fact that our nine-foot tree doesn't fit inside the house, so we ended up putting it up in the enclosed porch - that and we couldn't find a few of the boxes of cat toys..

There are six cat nip stockings on the tree. Someone had the brilliant idea of buying cheap decorative stockings and stick nip in them and sew them shut. I swear one of these years I am going to buy a ton of these after Christmas and make a bunch to donate for the next holiday.

This post was not brought to you by Traditional Medicinals Holiday Teas, but it totally could have been 😸 I will be having some Nighty Night before Christmas tea tonight..

And in case you were wondering which ornament was the first one off the tree.. Any guesses as to which one of my little angels caused this?

Previous trees:

Friday, December 22, 2017

No, this bed goes in the middle of the floor.. D'uh

See the end of that wall? That is the doorway into the living room. I'm standing in the hallway and to the right of Fleurp is the dining room.

The bedding she is laying on used to in the other house by the front door so the cats could lay down and look out the windows. I brought it here so they would have something that smells like them. I put it at the edge of the wall so it was mostly in the living room area so the cats could lay down and look into the living room, the kitchen and the dining area. Apparently, Fleurp wanted to be able to look down the hall too, or maybe she just wanted to be in the middle of everything.

I had noticed the bed moving out into the hall before, but I just chalked it up to my husband kicking it when he walked by or moving it slightly for some other reason, but I put the bedding back where I wanted just a couple hours before and my husband hadn't come home yet.. and Fleurp was sitting on it so proud that it was just where she wanted it.

An hour later she was sound asleep, in the middle of everything. The deep contented sleep of a happy cat who got what she wanted.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Eli's very bad no good day

Monday night Eli was in bed with my husband and I soliciting belly rubs and he showed no signs of illness or issue.

Tuesday morning I found him on a cat tree being very vocal. While he does like to announce his presence when he is coming for attention or when we walk by and he wants to say hi, this was something completely different. He just squeaked and screeched for no apparent reason. He sat there, in a catloaf, mewing at me and he let me walk right up to him (usually he flinches a little and I have to pause and let him get used to the idea I'm going to reach out and pat him) and he had something to say with every step. By the time I reached out to touch him I knew..

He was not happy. And when Eli is not happy he has physical manifestations of that unhappiness, usually in the form of urinary inflammation. At least I'm assuming it is urinary inflammation because he becomes very tight in the abdomen and in the old house he would start peeing out of the box. I would give him the urinary tablets I have that increase the urine PH and soothe the bladder walls and he would get better.

I started that protocol. I gave him a high dose of acidifier because he was so tight it was like a water balloon about to burst... his abdomen, not his bladder. I gave him something to relax and tried to comfort him.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with Eli, he started his life out as one of my fosters and he had several rounds of Calcivirus which made him so ill that for almost all of the first six months of his life he was on one type of medication or another. I hadn't learned that you don't let a cat just run away from you after you medicate them, so every time he saw me he wanted to run, I grabbed him, pilled him, and he ran away. While I tried to get some positive interactions with him, they were overshadowed by the forceful interactions we had... and he spent the next three years running away from me whenever he saw me, then the next five years after that barely able to tolerate being in the same room as me. I eased his fears with an intensive course of Rescue Remedy and by the time he was ten he voluntarily climbed up on my lap for the first time (I still remember that moment so clearly)

So, my 'forcing' comfort on him did not go well, it never does. He only wants attention when you aren't thinking about giving it to him. He was uncomfortable and tense and still vocal. I wanted to watch him, so I brought him upstairs to my office with a litter box and some food. He ate a little of the food and hid from me for the next two hours.

At noon I could no longer stand not knowing how he was doing so I hunted him down and pulled him out from his hiding place. He was still very tense. I tried comforting him again, holding him close, cooing words of comfort at him and kissing his head and he just wanted away. I gave him a lot of Rescue Remedy and let him go, and I was going to give it another hour, but I was so uncomfortable not knowing if his bladder was full or not, I decided I was going to run him to the vet clinic.

He was not happy.

Fortunately, his bladder was not enlarged nor did he exhibit any pain when the vet examined him. She could feel how tense he was, but could not find anything that would set him off. She ruled out most causes of illness and we settled on the idea that he was probably overstressed. We also agreed that he might be starting a blockage so I could either take him home and watch him or they could leave him there to watch him.

At this point, Eli was walking around the exam room - a sign that he is feeling okay - and I knew he would stress over staying, so I decided to take him home. The exam revealed that he has a small heart murmur - which is new - and a diffuse lump on his left side. He has two lipomas on his right side (one on the front leg and one on the back) so the vet was inclined to think that this was one too, but she charged me with watching both of those things as well.

When I got home, I faced the dilemma of should I lock him up near a litter box so I could monitor what he was doing which would increase his stress level or I could just set him free into the house and miss his trip to the litter box if he had one but I knew he would be more comfortable.

I will stand here and look disapprovingly at you
but if you walk one step down this hall I am under that bed in a heartbeat! -Eli

I worked for the next few hours and then checked on him again. He was still very tense in his abdomen, but he seemed calmer and he was less vocal. He ate so I knew things weren't too bad. I decided to change out the Feliway diffusers that we started using when we moved here. One was four weeks old and the other was only three but both were empty. I changed out the bottle and plugged it back in. In the morning, Eli was calmer and not nearly as tense and telling me it was time for breakfast. He then proceeded to sleep on the bed all day.. along with all of my other cats.

I do not know what happened. I've never seen his issue explode that quickly. I want to chalk it up to the Feliway running out because that would be easy, but I don't understand why he would be that upset at this point, a month after the move. Feliway recommends using the diffusers for three months, and I have a feeling I will be doing just that.. just in case.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Not a creature was stirring

At least until I opened up the treat jar.. then it was all "I am so awake and want those!"

~~ ~~πŸŽ„~~ ~~
I have about forty holiday cards left. If you would like one, fill out your address on my Postable account and I will send one out to you.  🐱

and if you want to send me a card my new address is
PO Box 554
Grantham, NH 03753

Monday, December 11, 2017

A cat tree forest

Our new house comes with a bonus room that the previous owners put on the back of their house where there would usually be a deck. When we were moving in we ended up putting all of the cat trees out there until we could figure out the best place to put them for maximum use. We have moved a few out into the house, but we still have to move a few more (obviously)

FYI, we have eleven cat trees. Yes.. eleven.. In my defense, we used to have eight cats, so you know.. that totally justifies having almost twice as many cat trees than I have cats.. especially since two of them can't climb them anymore..

~~ ~~πŸŽ„~~ ~~
My holiday cards should be here on Friday. If you would like one, fill out your address on my Postable account and I will send one out to you. Since my blog has been so quiet lately, I only ordered 100 of them. If for some reason I get more requests than that I will order some more but that means it will take a little longer for you to receive it. I hope you don't mind. 🐱

and if you want to send me a card my new address is
PO Box 554
Grantham, NH 03753

Friday, December 8, 2017

Momma, you need to open that drawer..

You know the one.. the one with the treats and stuff for a pretty little Fleurp like me.. You know you wanna..

(it was either that or you may kiss the paw, but she's not that kind of cat)

~~ ~~πŸŽ„~~ ~~
My holiday cards should be here on Friday. If you would like one, fill out your address on my Postable account and I will send one out to you. Since my blog has been so quiet lately, I only ordered 100 of them. If for some reason I get more requests than that I will order some more but that means it will take a little longer for you to receive it. I hope you don't mind. 🐱

and if you want to send me a card my new address is
PO Box 554
Grantham, NH 03753

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Additions to my work desk #chewyinfluencer

Now that I have moved, I am working from home. My "office" is upstairs away from the kitchen and where I am storing all of the cat treats.

Momma, the treats are too far away!!

Chewy.com offered me some cat treats in their November Influencer offering where they offer a number of things for me to chose from for free in exchange for a review. I chose Vital Essentials Cat Treats Freeze dried chicken and I decided that it would be in my best interest if I had a little stash of "distractions" in my office.

So yes, now I have a container of nip, a wand toy and a package of treats for when my cats show up and start meowing at me.

This is relevant to my interests

You may not watch me eat

And when you give a Fleurp a treat, you have to have others to share..

Everyone loved these and they will be sad when they run out. And I am starting to fear that I have trained them to come up here and beg for treats.

~~`~~πŸŽ„~~ ~~
My holiday cards should be here on Friday. If you would like one, fill out your address on my Postable account and I will send one out to you. Since my blog has been so quiet lately, I only ordered 100 of them. If for some reason I get more requests than that I will order some more but that means it will take a little longer for you to receive it. I hope you don't mind. 🐱

Monday, December 4, 2017

Fleurp says Hello

My husband picked up Fleurp to snuggle her. It was so cute I wanted to get a photo and as soon as I said that Fleurp "waved" at me. I turned, grabbed my camera and asked her to do it again.

The smirk on my husband's face is because he couldn't believe that she did it after I asked her to. Me? I just expected her to, that is why I asked.

I am working hard on getting the kitten room set up and once I do I will go to the local shelter and beg for kittens offer my services. I am hoping I don't have to wait until spring, but it is very rare to have kittens up this way in the winter unless they import them from down south. If I have to wait until spring, you'll just have to put up with Fleurp carrying the blog.

I have created an end of year 'holiday' card. If you would like one, fill out your address on my Postable account and I will send one out to you. Since my blog has been so quiet lately, I only ordered 100 of them. If for some reason I get more requests than that I will order some more but that means it will take a little longer for you to receive it. I hope you don't mind. 🐱

Friday, December 1, 2017

Tiki Cat After Dark #chewyinfluencer

When I was planning for the move, I knew that the cat's appetite would be off due to the stress of moving, and it totally was. Everyone (well not everyone *looks at Jack*) lost a little weight, so I will occasionally put down a can of cat food to encourage their appetite. My cats often act like I am giving them desert when I do, so I knew that it would be welcome - well that is if the can of food I am offering is acceptable.

The Chewy.com Influencer program offered me Tiki Cat After Dark in October Influencer Program (where they offer me free product in exchange for a review) and I grabbed it because I really liked the ingredient list.

I had heard several reviews of this food that said it was full of liquid. I found this to be true. I also found it mighty impressive that there is a half a quail egg in the Chicken & Quail Egg flavor.

You can see how much liquid there is in the product. This is good for cats who like a brothy food. It is a little hard on us humans when opening up the product. Despite knowing that this was an issue and being careful, I still ended up spilling some on the counter.

The question becomes, did the cats like it?

Very much indeed. It was a welcome break from the stress of attempting to make the house smell like them. Bringing as many soft items that they spent time on in the other house (aka scent soakers) helped, but there is still a lot of shedding and rubbing to do to get the house to smell just right.

And a whole lot of napping to do..

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Moving was made a little easier with Chewy.com #chewyinfluencer

As I mentioned last month, I was offered a few items in October through the Chewy.com Influencer program that I thought would be beneficial to have when we finally moved. I must say I do believe they both helped a lot.

After the two hour drive to the new house and realizing that Eli now has a meep meow that sounds a lot like a meepy car horn that is a few car lengths back, I carted all of the cats into the house. I originally was going to set them up upstairs but I quickly realized that was not going to work. Which is sadly why I don't have a great photo of the Feliway Comfort Zone which helps with stress behaviors by calming cats. When I moved the cats and put them in the master bathroom, I moved the plugin down there.

You can see it in the outlet by the sink. You can also see a plate of the Tiki Cat Food. I know that cats won't eat when they are stressed but since several of my cats are highly food motivated I was hoping that this would also be a "good thing" and it would help calm them.

They all came out of their carriers pretty quickly - thankfully because I didn't think six would fit in that bathroom - and were investigating. When they were finally released from the bathroom the bed was up and they were feeling better about things, but they were not ready to leave the bedroom. Jack would often go back to the bathroom where the Feliway was and sit in the carrier underneath it. It felt like he wanted to "go home".

So, I unplugged it and moved it into the kitchen where we wanted to feed them.

In fact, I liked the Feliway so much I bought a second one - along with a whole bunch of litter

Monday, November 27, 2017

Moving with Cats

It has been a week since I packed up the cats and we traveled to the next stage of life. .. wait, really? how has it been a week already.. goodness, gracious..

Anyway.. We still have a lot more to do. We are still not out of Casa de Gato. I still haven't come up with a name for the new house, We still need to put CdG up on the market and sell it (*fingers crossed that goes well*) and you shouldn't be shocked to learn we still have a ton of boxes to unpack and that doesn't include the ton of boxes I don't plan to unpack for several months or more (they belong to my craft room and I don't have one of those yet)

We have several huge plans for this house, most of which require an engineer to see if the structure of the house can handle it. We also need to do something about the spot on the floor that is causing the ceiling above it to crack. All of this needs to wait though.. we have to finish moving first.

About the actual move..

I packed up the cats and attempted to get them out of the house before the movers showed up. Because the movers showed up half an hour early, I didn't quite pull that off. I was able to secure Eli and Twee first - very important - and got them in carriers and then usually everyone else is pretty easy. This time, however, Muffin decided she didn't want to go and found a way to open up the closet in my office that was hiding behind a stack of boxes that took up the entire length of the sliders. I had to move all kinds of boxes to get to her. When I finally got her out, the movers walked into the house freaking her out even more. She does not like being seen by company... I think she thinks they are going to steal her away.

I finally got them all in the car along with important things like litter and medications and we headed off. Interestingly, they quieted down really quickly. Normally we have to take the highway north to get to the vet half an hour away and they have words the entire way. This time by the time we got to the highway headed south they were fairly quiet. I would hear them occasionally, but in general, they sat and listened to my audiobook.  About halfway, Eli developed a new trick. He found he could mew in such a way to sound like a car horn. I was on the highway all by myself, so I kept looking in all of my mirrors to make sure I wasn't missing something.I had to shake my head when I realized what he was doing.

When we got to the house I originally intended to set them up upstairs, but I quickly realized that was not going to work (the floor has not been cleaned and was full of drywall dust) I had to cart them all back down the stairs and I put them in the master bathroom. Unfortunately, the bathroom door didn't latch and the knob came off when I tried. Fortunately, they had no intention of leaving, but even so, I found myself checking on them quite frequently and sitting with them trying to calm them. Once the movers were finally gone we made the bed and opened the door. They came out and investigated the bedroom and then went and sat in their carriers as if to say "Okay, let's go home"

It took several days for them to feel comfortable enough in the room to try to investigate the hall. Twee, Fleurp, and Skippy were quicker to adapt to new rooms than Jack, Muffin, and Eli. Muffin has had the worst time of the six. It hasn't been too bad but she was the most resistant to eating in the kitchen and it took her the longest to climb up on the bed and sleep out in the open.

We are at the point where all the food is being fed in the kitchen now (as opposed to in the bedroom or in the hall right outside the bedroom) and all six cats are currently in the bed with us (I mean literally, as I type this). I have opened the door to the upstairs and the 'youngsters' are thrilled when I let them up there. The "elders" are still a bit nervous. It will probably be a week or two before I feel comfortable letting them into the basement (not that there is anything wrong with the basement, it is quite nice, but too much territory too quickly can be overwhelming for cats)

So far, *knock wood*, Jack has been fairly stable. I was giving him supplements to help his bladder and he has yet to pee outside the box *knocks more wood*. Twee is currently having a bit of an issue. She was very quiet all day yesterday and had a small bout of diarrhea. I think she is upset because her daddy isn't spending a lot of time at the house yet and she misses him.. at least that is what I hope it is.

I need to get established at the local vet. I suppose I should call them and make sure they even want me as a client (you know, the whole raw feeding minimal vaccines owner)

Anyway.. so far, so good, and I'm glad things went as smoothly as they did. Once we are fully out of the other house and we have a lot more boxes unpacked, I'll introduce myself to the local shelter. Hopefully they'll have kittens..

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