Saturday, February 28, 2015

Cats at Work? Yes, at Ferray Corporation in Japan!

Check this out!

http://www.odditycentral.com/animals/japanese-company-fills-offices-with-cats-to-help-employees-unwind-and-improve-productivity.html

Wish I could work there!  Years ago, I was employed in a very small, family-run business whose owners brought their dog in on Saturdays.  While I stuffed envelopes and licked stamps (yes, that long ago!), the dog would put his big head in my lap.  I had no idea how great that was, until I worked in other places...especially big corporate offices...where the mere thought of an animal in the office is frowned upon.  Maybe I'll accidentally leave a copy of this news article on the boss's desk...do you think that might help?

Guess I'll just have to satisfy my cat-craving at the office with a cat calendar, and photos of my kitties (I have more framed photos than shown above...and a photo of the hubby as a boy...), and of course I wear my cat-fur covered clothes!

Friday, February 27, 2015

RIP Leonard Nimoy

1931-2015

Mee-wow!

In the episode "Assignment: Earth" from the original Star Trek series, the cat appeared to be quite fond of Spock.  Later on, the cat transforms into a woman!  First aired in 1968, this particular episode was one of my favorites.  Leonard Nimoy was always one of my favorite actors; I watched him in Mission: Impossible too.  Farewell, dear Leonard...may you have many cats to guide you on your new journey into the beyond! 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Pretty in Bows



This is Izzy, a co-worker's cat.  She likes posing for the camera, I'm thinking. What a pretty, floofy kitty, with lovely towhawks and green eyes!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Straw=Love

Sweetie's got something in her fur!
Close-up
We first met Sweetie in the summer of 2009, when Hobo encouraged her to eat from his food bowl on our deck.  We quickly figured out she was expecting, and the hubby built a wooden cat shelter from a design found online; insulated and big enough for a whole family.  But Sweetie and her babies never used our shelter, even though I dragged it to different parts of the yard, thinking it was the location that they didn't like.  Over a year later, after taking a class in TNR and shelter building, I figured out the problem, and promptly stuffed that shelter full of straw.  Voila!  The cats began to sleep in the shelter!

Years have come and gone, and at first I would fret when I changed out the straw, thinking the ferals would run away!  They may have for a day or two, but they always came back.  Now, I'm adding to, or fluffing up the straw enough times a year that Patty and Sweetie sit on the deck and watch me, before heading back inside 'their' home.  Seeing a stick of straw in Sweetie's fur today made me realize just how much I love these kitties, and how pleased I am that they choose to live in the accommodations that we've made for them.  Yes, I am still fretting over this cold, cold Winter, and I dream of making them a home INSIDE somehow, but they are living here and I am grateful for that.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

As Winter Continues

Before the hubby and I went out for a drive this morning, I got a few pics of Chuck and Angel, each enjoying their fur-covered sleeping spots.

Chucky
Angel
Then, when we were driving in Grosse Pointe, the sun peaked out of the gloom a little bit, and the amazing blue ice on Lake St. Clair looked almost lovely.  You cannot see Canada in these photos, but it's out there, beyond the horizon.



Thursday, February 19, 2015

Update on 2015 Resolutions


My 2015 Cat Resolutions
Updates

For Angel and Chuck:
1) I resolve to put quality in our time together; toy play with Angel, and one-on-one with Chuck. Every day, I try new things with both Angel and Chuck - updates forthcoming
DONE! 2) I resolve to finish the transition to wheat litter, in hopes that it reduces Chuck's intestinal issues.  Only wheat litter in the boxes now!  No noticeable change for Chuck...drat!
3) I resolve to allow solutions to cat problems to grow organically with time, rather than jump to conclusions, or react with panic, or feel pressure to fix it NOW. Yeah, well...a little panic over sub-zero temps is normal, right?  Guess I'm still working on this resolution.
4) I resolve to find a new veterinarian, preferably a holistic practitioner. I think I've found one, but Angel and Chuck are doing well right now...will wait until late Spring to make appointments.

For the 'o' cats:
DONE! 1) I resolve to take both Sweetie and Patty in for veterinary check-ups in the Spring.  No more wishy-washy 'should I, shouldn't I?' about this.  Can't do it now, because we have no electricity for a heater in the barn as holding area, and it's too cold out now.  Adding to resolution: Get Sweetie back to vet for dental.  Another warmer weather item.
2) I resolve to TNR the elusive Wild Bill Russell.  Haven't seen this cat for weeks now, but I'm still looking!
3) I resolve to put Sammy's heart-shaped container in a place that I can see daily.  Where do I put such a valuable item?  When the flowers come up in the spring, perhaps I sprinkle his ashes in the memory garden I made for him; he lived out there, after all.  

For friends and family:
1) I resolve to assist The Paw ProjectAlliance for Contraception in Cats and DogsBest Friends Animal SocietyPaws for the CauseAll About Animals Spay and Neuter Clinic and others in as many ways as I can!  I hope to do at least one project for each this year.
2) I resolve to encourage all cat-loving people that I meet to give 100% of themselves to their feline family members.  Keeping my patience with co-workers who tell me horror stories about their animals, or by calmly fielding angry or insulting comments from people during adoption events WITHOUT turning bright red in the face...

For myself:
1) I resolve to work on my own health, so I can offer positive vibes and attitude to the hubby, my people and cat families, and to my co-workers. This includes physical exercise and mental relaxation.  2015 is my year for joy, humor, and growth!  Um...well, it's only February...and it's freezing cold, and the office move to the new location has hit eleventy million snags.
2) I resolve to re-establish electricity to the barn, by sweetly encouraging the hubby to GET IT DONE.  Arg, now he's thinking the money would be better spent on plumbing upgrades...got to keep him on track here!
Smilin' Sammy...how I miss your meows!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Fashion

Yes, yes, I've been a bit whiny about the cold.  That's because I love my kitties so!  However, I also took some time for myself...shopping!

Front

Back (wrinkled because I left it in the bag too long)

Another cat pin!  But look how cute!
Found a few fun cat items!  Crazy women with cats need to keep up their standards, you know!  Cannot always look like the photo below...
Crazy lady with cats gear for the winter: scruffy hat (chew holes), multiple scarves,
cat fur-lined fleece shirt, old puffy coat, double layer of sweat pants,
the hubby's snow boots...and that's just for the inside!  LOL!
I CANNOT show you what I wear to go outside in the bitter cold, because it includes TWO, count 'em, two winter coats, a scarf tied around my face, and various and sundry other items so my teeth won't chatter...much.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Brrrr....


Patty and Sweetie yesterday, around 2:30 pm
Patty
Patty once again photobombs Sweetie
Yep, 3 degrees was our high temperature!
Patty and Sweetie enjoyed the bright sunshine yesterday, and I was glad that they appeared to be okay.  This frigid air is supposed to last for another couple of days, so you know I'll be watching them carefully. Sweetie had frost on her whiskers this morning!  Couldn't take a photo, with mittens on.

And then:
Temp at home, just before I left the office

ALASKA IS WARMER THAN MICHIGAN!!!!!
Last year was the coldest and snowiest for Metro Detroit.  So why is it colder NOW than last year?  I mean, I feel for the folks out east getting buckets of snow, and down south getting ice and all kinds of nastiness weather.  But c'mon now, Mother Nature!  Ease up on us...please!  My 'o' cats may be hardy, and healthy, and have a nice Cat Hotel, but I'm just beside myself until the overnight temps get into positive territory.  It may be March by the time the jet stream patterns or arctic blasts or Storm Ophelia or Stormin' Norman move along.  Sheesh...

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Devoted...

...to worry!  It's bitterly cold, with sub-zero temperatures, and wind-chills in the negative double-digits.  Patty and Sweetie came out for some fresh kibble 30 minutes ago, and I poured fresh water for them.  But now the sun is setting, and I will pray and remain anxious for them all night long. Sure, we built them an insulated shelter, with a warming pad and wind-blocks, and straw...but it's sub-zero out there!  My peace-of-mind for Patty and Sweetie will probably not return until the end of March.  You've heard about the crazy cat lady, well...I'm going crazy because of the cats! I am devoted to their little furry hides, but I can DO NOTHING ELSE now.  Grace under pressure?  Not me!  Just wait and see?  Forget that...I'm pacing the floor.  Hearing the wind howl in the bare tree branches...in fact, the whole house is creaking and groaning in the gusts...and I'm close to hyperventilating.  Everything I planned for the 'o' cats was for this scenario; when the weather is too brutal.  How did I do? Only the next few days will tell.

Happy Valentine's Day to all; my heart is outside in The Cat Hotel.


Thursday, February 12, 2015

Declaw Illegal in New York State Soon?

Friends,

Go to your favorite search engine, type in 'New York State' and 'de-claw' and you'll find a wealth of articles about Manhattan Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal's bill to make the practice of de-clawing (technical term: Onychectomy) illegal in the entire state.  

A partial list of countries that have outlawed or condemned this unfortunate practice:

Australia
Brazil
Israel
Finland
Estonia
Netherlands
Germany
Switzerland
Austria
United Kingdom

In the United States, the following cities have made it illegal:

West Hollywood, CA
Los Angeles, CA
San Francisco, CA
Burbank, CA
Santa Monica, CA
Berkeley, CA
Beverly Hills, CA
Culver City, CA

States that prohibit landlords from demanding resident cats be de-clawed as a condition of residency:

California
Rhode Island

If you'd like more information, go to The Paw Project.  There is so much stuff you can find online or in books at the library about living peaceably with cat's nails, such as scratching posts, those little nylon thingies, and routine nail clipping that can make a huge difference!
YOU can make a difference too!  Talk to your friends, family members, folks at church, folks in line with you at the bank, and inform them!  We can do it!  People will tell you that more cats will end up WITHOUT a home, but the amount of de-clawed cats that end up in shelters because of behavior problems contradicts that very argument.



Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Here You Come Again

Here you come again
Just when I've begun to get myself together
You waltz right in the door
Just like you've done before
And wrap my heart 'round your little finger

Here you come again
Just when I'm about to make it work without you
You look into my eyes
And lie those pretty lies
And pretty soon I'm wonderin', how I came to doubt you

All you have to do is smile that smile
And there go all my defenses
Just leave it up to you and in a little while
You're messin' up my mind
And fillin' up my senses

Here you come again
Lookin' better than a body has a right to
And shakin' me up so that all I really know
Is here you come again
And here I go

All you have to do is smile that smile
And there go all my defenses
Just leave it up to you and in a little while
You're messin' up my mind
And fillin' up my senses

Here you come again
Lookin' better than a body has a right to
And shakin' me up so that all I really know
Is here you come again
And here I go...
Really, Winter!
YOU CAN GO AWAY NOW!!!!
Lyrics by Dolly Parton

P.S. Please visit Colehaus Cats and read the lovely memorial to Maxx, and while there, leave a comment for his grieving humans.  

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Stray Whisker



Patty lost a whisker in the outside water bucket.  He's got the coolest whiskers; they start as dark brown or black nearest his face, then turn white on the ends.

Chucky's whiskers are all black, and Angel's are just plain white.  I've carefully saved a few shed whiskers from both cats...dunno why, just have...but Angel does a funny thing with hers.  If I find one of her long white whiskers, I'll often use it as a toy, and Angel will ALWAYS eat the thing!  She grabs it out of my fingers with her teeth, and she'll chew it down.  Weird...and kind of gross.  She also eats cobwebs, popcorn, and licks my sprouted wheat bread toast.  But the face she makes when I hold up a banana would have you rolling on the floor with laughter; it's as close to a Bitter Beer Face as any cat could manage!  I'll have to try to capture that face in a photo someday, as she scrunches up her nose and pulls her head back.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Book Review: The Story of Fester Cat


The Story of Fester Cat: How One Remarkable Cat Changed Two Men's Lives
Published by The Penguin Group, November 2014
ISBN 978-0-425-27504-7

Ungow!

A seasoned off-and-on again street cat decides he wants a permanent home, and he chose Paul and Jeremy to be his humans.  The three guys learn a lot about each other...and life...in this sweet story by Paul Magrs, as told by Fester himself.  With only one-and-a-half teeth, Fester's crooked grin brings a family together, as they sit in the backyard enjoying the pond, or typing feverishly in front of the computer.  With wonderful wry humor, Fester, Paul and Jeremy redefine rules to make their own oasis of love, with the help or non-help of neighbors, relatives, friends, and a parade of community cats.

P.S. Ungow is Fester's version of 'meow'.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Angel Wins at Squares



Just for fun, the hubby and I played Super Bowl squares on Sunday.  Instead of just the two of us (what fun is that?), we added Chuck and Angel, and gave Sweetie and Patty a set of squares under 'O' for outside.

For the first half, the 'o' cats were doing well, but in the end, Angel won!  We played this game last year too, and Chuck won.  Don't know why us humans don't win...and we do all the work!

Note: Actually, no one wins anything...no money or kibble are exchanged; it's just a mental exercise!  

Anyhoo, it's an added giggle during the game, which sometimes can be downright boring when the score gets lopsided.  This year, I did not watch the half-time show...I was out shoveling snow!  Metro Detroit got 16.7 inches of the white stuff, the 3rd largest snow accumulation on the record books.  Patty seems to love the snow; he jumps around and does not seem to care about temperatures or precipitation.  Sweetie comes out for food, then quickly slides back into the Cat Hotel.  

video


P.S. To Rupert at Katnip Lounge, you have a lovely name!  Please forgive me if I offended by asking where your name came from.   (Actually, I wondered if he'd lost a bet...)  Mea Culpa, Rupert baby!



Sunday, February 1, 2015

Riding the storm out

Angel, on her favorite wool sweater bed
Chucky hides in the clothes basket

Paw prints
Patty is worried about the snow shovel in my hand, NOT the camera in the other
video
At least it's February...we are one day closer to Springtime!