Friday, November 30, 2012

Vermont Catamount

Whenever I travel to New Hampshire to visit my family I suffer though intense cat withdraws. On this recent trip I endured a whole four days of not touching a single cat. And somehow I lived to tell the tail. When I'm experiencing these painful times of feline abstinence, I find that the sensitivity of my feline radar goes up and I start noticing cat themed items or imagery all over. On my recent trip, I saw a car with a Vermont license plate with a beautiful image of a cat.

I just researched this plate on the Vermont State Fish & Wildlife website and learned that it's a special conservation plate, with the proceeds going to the Nongame Wildlife Fund and the Watershed Grant Fund. The depicted cat is the Vermont Catamount, which is now extinct, how sad.

Now I have another reason to move back to Vermont! I want one of these license plates with this gorgeous cat on it! Washington State, where I live, is lame, they don't have any license plates featuring cats. We do have a special plate with cartoon dogs on it that supports the Washington Federation of Animal Care and Control Agencies, but it doesn't feature a cat. Bummer for me.

Does your state or local licensing jurisdiction have any cool cat-themed license plates?
 (updated: Nov 30, 2012 7:26am)

Thursday, November 29, 2012

cat puzzle

I got back in town from my long trip visiting family last Friday night. Come Saturday, the idea of having a low key evening, by relaxing with a fun puzzle, a yummy Vermont beer and snacks, and some good tunes sounded ideal.

I can't remember the last time I worked on a jigsaw puzzle, but it was definitely pre-cat, which means at least six years ago. I've always enjoyed puzzles, so the other day when I ran across a cat puzzle at the Goodwill for half a dollar, I snagged it. It's David McEnery's Classic Cats 500-piece Jigsaw Puzzle: Cat Nap II.

Before all the pieces could be laid out on the table, Theo was offering to help. And it was a good thing he was helping, because 500 pieces is a lot to sort through!

The puzzle picture is black and white which made it quite challenging.

Theo observed for awhile to see how it was done.

I'm not sure he shares my enthusiasm for puzzles.

With Theo now refusing to help, it was time to call in some local puzzles experts.

These friends love puzzles, so they were happy to come over spur of the moment to assist. With their help we were able to make some good progress.

Awhile later, inner sections started to come together.

Nahum offered to help.

After a valiant effort from the puzzle team, it became clear that the puzzle was not going to be completed in one night. The next morning, Nahum finds the partially completed puzzle makes a good kitty spot.

How many pieces can Nahum knock on the floor with one swish of his bushy tail?! Too many!

Nahum moves to my lap to snoopervise, a much better arrangement for all of us!  


Sunday, November 25, 2012

special treats

Remember Mr. I wrote about them back in March, when they asked me to do a review of their  service. Well, since then they dropped the Mister part and now just go by sent me some Felidae TidNips Chicken & Rice Cat Treats to review. They are made by Felidae, a brand who's food I have tried before.

Nahum was the first to give them a try.

He loves them!

Rose tried next...

She also wolfed it right down, even from her hidey spot behind the tub (away from Hershey). 

Then came Hershey...

He sniffed it and passed it up, as he does with all other treats too! What kind of crazy cat doesn't like treats?!?! Hershey is a bit different.

Nahum kindly offered to take care of that for him. 

Buddy was next...

Buddy only eats treats or any other food when he's ready for them. Trying to push treats on him when he's not asking always results with the same stink eye and the "i'll ignore you until you go away" approach. Oh well, his loss!

Theo gobbled his treats right down!

Willow didn't get to try them because she's still hiding somewhere away from Hershey. Poor girl. 

These Felidae treats are a real winner! As it says on the package, they're "Chicken-licious!" I like that they are hard, but not superhard. Some treats are so dry I fear they might crack teeth, but no so with these.

And I have a special treat for all of us. is having a big Cyber Monday Sale! For Monday only, some of their products are up to 50% off (with the exception of food). Treats, toys, bedding, and all other accessories are on sale! Sale ends midnight of November 26th (I'm assuming midnight Eastern time since they are based on the East Coast). 

I'm curious to see what products they actually put on sale and how much of a discount, because if the flea treatments and Cosequin are half off, that could be a screaming deal! I'll be visiting their site on Monday to find out. Thanks for the yummy treats to try!!

updated - 9pm PST

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Once again I'm away from the kitties over the Thanksgiving holiday as I visit my family in New Hampshire. Being away from the feline family is never easy, I miss them terribly, although it's nice seeing the human family.

Hershey is spending his Holiday at a temporary foster home.

Leaving him was difficult even though I know he would be well taken care of. The amount of sadness I felt at leaving him is a bit concerning as it make me wonder how I will do when it comes to saying goodbye for good when he gets placed in his permanent home.

To ease my separation anxiety, the foster-mom has been emailing me pictures of Hershey. By the look of these pictures he doesn't seem to be suffering one bit!

This bed is heated and in front of the window!

With Hershey staying in such deluxe accommodations, I'm thinking maybe next time I'll take all nine cats over!!

While I've been away, I've been enjoying seeing the kitties on the various kitty cams I have set up around the place.

MK hanging out in the warm bed while Oliver keeps watch

I installed a new camera inside Oliver's heated house. This way when I don't see Oliver on his back porch I can rest easy knowing he's comfy, warm and dry in his heated home. Here are some of the heartwarming views I have seen on this new camera:

Oliver snoozing

not sure which one of Oliver's family this one is

It's hard to see, but two black cats are snuggling 
together on the heating pad staying toasty warm!

Seeing Oliver so snug brings tears of delight to my eyes

Of course it's great to watch the inside kitties too!

Nahum on the run

One of the girls has her crazies on in the window for all to see!

Once again on this Thanksgiving, I am immensely thankful for Laura, my cats, their health and happiness, for my family and for all you, my faithful readers. So many blessings and so much to be thankful for.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


What's better than having a resident handyman? Having a resident handyman-cat of course! Oliver insists on helping with every project!

A few months ago the washing machine stopped working. It took numerous attempts over a month before it was fixed. Every time I went to work on it, Oliver was right there to assist!

Snoopervising from above

Oliver's a handyman-cat who's not afraid to get his paws dirty.

paws-on troubleshooting the problem

A nose for finding trouble

We narrowed the problem down to the motor

I found a motor wire that had shorted out on the motor mount. After finding a used motor on ebay for $72 I swapped out the motor, only to find out it wasn't the motor!

Online assistance thanks to YouTube!

Turns out the problem was the $18 capacitor! Always best to start with the cheapest parts when replacing parts. Oh well, now I have a spare motor! Thanks to Oliver's help the washing machine got fixed! I love having a handyman-cat even though the lap snuggles in the middle of work slows things down.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Hershey passed inspection!

Hershey had his big adventure today, he got to go to the vet to get examined, poked and prodded!

He did great even though he was scared and didn't want to be there. While I was in the waiting room, he pleaded for help from anyone that would listen. No one came to his aide.

The spay/neuter clinic only tested him for FeLV (he was negative) and since I will be adopting him out soon, I wanted to get him tested for FIV as well. I'm thrilled that he tested negative for that too! He got his FVRCP booster shot and the other day I had him microchipped so now he's ready to go!

After the Thanksgiving holiday he will be available for adoption. I hope he finds his new home soon as he continues to terrorize the other cats. Yesterday, he had both Willow and Rose hiding behind the tub. When he's not pouncing on the other cats he's either super playful or snuggling in my lap.

Thank you everyone who offered your suggestions about how to curtail Hershey's obnoxious behaviors. Squirting him with water is not going to work because he's so lightening fast, there's no way I could react in time to get him before it's too late. He doesn't do the butt wiggle before pouncing, he just pounces! I've tried the play, play, play option and it just seems to get him wound up even more before he goes after the other cats. I will have to try the homeopathic remedies after the holiday, hopefully that will do the trick!

I can't tell if he's really trying to play with them or if he's asserting his dominance, but either way, it's not working for any of us. I was hoping Willow would set him straight as she doesn't usually tolerate any nonsense from any other cat, but after a surprise attack from Hershey, she retreated to her safe place. Maybe it would be better for him to get placed in a home as the only cat or with a cat who is as playful and assertive as him.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

even more Hershey

I haven't had much time to blog lately, not really sure why or where my time is going, but it's going! Yikes! I know some of the time goes to caretaking lots of cats!

Hershey has been getting more time in the general population lately. There have been moments where I have felt like his integration has been going quite well.

Hershey, Nahum and Theo keep watch together

During the daytime, Hershey is a lot more subdued and thus isn't trying to get the cats to play every moment. At night, all he wants to do is play, so it quickly gets crazy between him and the others.

When he settles, he becomes a pile of purring kitty-putty in my lap! So precious!

It might seem all is going well, but sadly, that's not true. As Hershey acclimates to the house, he is becoming a bully, in particular with Rose. Hershey has challenged each of the cats in his own seemingly playful way, which appears to be his way of gauging how they defend themselves. Rose tends to hiss but if challenged she runs. Hershey has taken to chasing after her which terrifies poor Rose. The other night, Hershey chased her upstairs and under the bed. I raced up after him to protect her and I found that he had scared the poop right out of her, literally. I was not happy. 

Since that moment, Hershey is strictly monitored when he is among the general population. Today he managed to chase Rose behind the clawfoot tub. This is not acceptable behavior. Rose is a treasured member of our family and any bullying will not be tolerated. So, now I keep a secured door between Rose and Hershey. 

It saddens me to have to keep Hershey locked up so much, I was really hoping he would settle in well with the indoor cats so he could have the freedom of the entire house, but so far that is not so. Tonight, I got some Feliway going in the house, maybe that will help, but I'm not overly optimistic. I still give Hershey some time in the full house when Rose is secured in the bedroom or front porch, but that is not easy to arrange since she will not let humans touch her.

If anyone has any tips or pointers on how to make Hershey not bully Rose, they would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!