Happy Tails: Meet Mrs

    Author’s Note: Many thanks to Miss Georgina for sharing her story about Mrs. Also she wanted to share some information about toddlers & cats. Pictures used with permission. 

How many pets to you have?

We have one beautiful cat called Mrs, were unsure of her age because she’s a rescue, the shelter said 3 but the vet said 5! That was over a year ago when she came to live with us.

How is she with the kids? 

She is amazing with the kids, our Freddie is 3 1/2 and Tobias is 3 months.

How did she come into your life? 

When we wanted to get a cat we took Freddie with us, we decided to take whichever cat didn’t run away from him! We walked through about 4 pens with 15+ cats in each and they all ran! In the last pen the inevitable happened then this beautiful little black and white DSH strolled up to Freddie and curled round his legs! She was perfect for us! We were told that she’d had children in her previous home but they had moved out and abandoned her. ☹

What tips/tricks would like to share about having Mrs in the home with toddlers?

We firmly believe in leading by example so treat Mrs with respect and love, grooming her frequently and snuggling whenever she feels like it!

Freddie can sometimes get overexcited but he always apologizes to her if he’s a little heavy handed. (He’s never hurt her just stroked a little too hard etc) She has never growled, hissed or raised a paw at him, she will happily sit whilst he runs trains up and down her back! They have such a wonderful relationship she sleeps in front of his bedroom door and is always near him when she’s not outside basking in the sunshine!

We groom her as a family, we feed her and change her water together, he knows she’s a part of the family just like he is.

When we were expecting Tobias we put baby clothes near her so she could get used to his smell. I actually sat down and explained that she was going to have another little brother to watch over! Probably sounds ridiculous! She wasn’t phased at all when he was born! It took her a few weeks before she went near him and smelt him, nothing changed!

Our best trick to keep her happy is keeping her food away from the boys in the kitchen where there are gates protecting her from being annoyed whilst eating! She also has her catbed away from them but rarely uses it! She comes and goes as she pleases but always ends up infront of Freddie’s door at night ❤
I’d love to have another cat join the family but in all honesty she’s the perfect addition and we wouldn’t want to risk making her unhappy so she’ll probably stay our only one

Also, we didn’t want a kitten as they’re too erratic for kids and could find having children in the house stressful, adult cats with previous experience of children are more relaxed and know how to deal with kids! Plus who needs to deal with toilet training a cat as well as a toddler!!!

Extra Love Needed: Meet Sora

Author’s Note: Many thanks to Miss Julie for letting me interview her about Sora. Pictures were used with a permissions.

How old is Sora?

My cat is 22 months. He will be 2 in September.

How did he come into your life?

I bought him from a cattery. The woman was reluctant to sell him because he was such a good cat.

What breed of cat is he?

Sora is a persian cat.He breathes heavy at times.

Why does he have problems breathing? 

It’s the way his nose is. It’s hard for them to breath sometimes. It’s just the breed of cat. Oh, he has trouble eating sometimes because of his flat face.

What kind of medication does he need?

He needs colloidal silver in his eyes and nose.

What is his favorite thing to do?

He likes to sleep and take up my side of the bed. He likes to chase bugs. Loves bugs. He will stare at bugs for a long time if they are on the wall. He likes to walk in between your feet as your walking. He likes the laser pointer and toys on a string.

Does he have any unusual habits?

He does this thing where he knows where the treats are so when you are near it he will start gently clawing at the cabinet. If he hears any kind of crinkling he thinks it’s a treat and comes running. We have cathedral ceilings and he likes to sit on the wall opening between the kitchen and living room.

Happy Tails: Meet Ruffles

Author’s Note: Thank you very much Miss Valeria for letting me ask questions about Ruffles. Pictures used with permission.

How old are they?
2 y/o

What is their name?
Ruffles

How did they come to live with you?
I was doing the usual when I looked out the window and saw something small moving under a truck. I went outside and saw it was a kitten, I tried to pet him but he was so scared. I left food outside and saw he was eating, kept doing that during the day.

Next day I went outside and I couldn’t find him anymore, I was very sad until I hear a meow. Went outside and he was already living in my patio, so since that day he let us live with him!.

How many pets do you have?
Only Ruffles, but the neighbor’s dogs come to visit every once in a while.

Do they all get along?
Oh no, the Labrador and the German Shepherd are scared of him

Does your cat have any unusual habits?
He has a dog house, he loves it. He doesn’t care if its meant to be for a dog. Don’t touch the house, NEVER!. And he loves to sleep, eat, watch cat TV, everything! On top of the house.

He also loves the rain. Doesn’t matter if it’s such a terrible weather, he loves to lay on the floor and get soaked.

What is their favorite thing to do?
Eat. Doesn’t matter if he ate 5 minutes ago, he will want food again and again and again.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
Thank you, Christina for taking the time to ask about my cat. And thank you everyone for reading.

Saving Senior Cats one at a time

 Author’s Note: Many thanks to Miss Leslie Cobb for letting me interview her about the senior cats in her house. Pictures used with permission.  Miss Leslie is also an artist with a focus on painting cats with special needs or compelling rescue stories. She donates some of the proceeds from my art back to the shelters, rescues or sanctuaries that care for these cats.  Volunteers annually at Best Friends Animal Society. The website is lesliecobb.com and Facebook page is Cat Art by Leslie Cobb

 

I currently have 8 seniors, 4 adopted when they were young and 4 adopted as seniors. I’ll post a photo and details about each one below. I started adopting seniors because so many people won’t. They still have so much love to give and they deserve a safe and loving home in their golden years. I think people worry that an older cat won’t bond with them the way a kitten does but that’s just not true. Rex, the love of my life, was 14 when I adopted him, and although we only had 1.5 years together, I have no regrets.

Tallulah Jane has been with me the longest. She was 6 weeks old and half dead when someone gave her to me at an art fair. It took 3 months before she recovered from a severe feline herpesvirus infection. She has chronic upper respiratory problems still. She will be on antibiotics and over-the-counter eye ointment for lufe. I also have to flush the excess mucus from her nose with a bottle of eyewash every day.

Riley was adopted just a few months after Tallulah. In fact, she chose him! At the time she was my only kitten and the other cats were annoyed by her so I decided to adopt a young cat as a playmate. I brought her with me in a shoulder bag to an adoption event by a local rescue. When she met Riley, she patted him on the head and turned to look at me as if to say, “he’s the one!” Riley has a malformed epiglottis and that causes him to have very loud breathing, especially when he eats. It scared other potential adopters away. But overall he’s healthy. He is quite skittish since he came out of a feral colony.

Annabel was about 6 months old when I saw her at an adoption event where I was selling my art to benefit a shelter’s medical fund. People would see her playing in the cage and say, “How cute!” but when she turned to look at them they would back away, saying “Eww, what happened to her eye?” She was found orphaned at only a few days old and was placed with a lactating mom cat whose babies had died. Unfortunately it turned out that the mom cat had an upper respiratory infection and she passed it on to Annabel and her littermates. Her eye was damaged before she was old enough to open it. She has limited vision in that eye and it’s not painful. She’s 12 now.

Genevieve is 10 and she has the same eye damage as Annabel but to a lesser extent. A local rescue group was having trouble getting her eye infections under control so I offered to foster her and take her to a specialist. She got along so well with my other cats once her infections cleared up that I decided to keep her.

Vivian was 12 when I adopted her; she’s 19 now, the oldest in my family. She had been surrendered to a shelter with her brother, but he was sick and had to be euthanized. Losing her home and brother, and ending up in a shelter cage surrounded by strange cats, traumatized her. She became fear-aggressive toward other cats. I consulted with a veterinary behaviorist and started what turned into a ten month desensitization and counter conditioning program. She went from attacking inanimate objects that another cat had touched to now being able to snuggle with her feline siblings. She’s amazingly healthy for her age.

I’ve had Gladys just under two years; she’s around 17. She’s deaf and hyperthyroid, and her kidneys are failing. She also hates other cats so she spends most of her time in her own room. She takes medication for her thyroid and gets sub-q fluids every day for her kidney disease.

Herman’s been with me since December and he’s around 13. His human mom died the same day as my own mother, and her hospice coordinator asked my advice on how to find him a new home. It seemed like it was meant to be so I told her he could come live with me. He’s a sweet and healthy boy but he and my one young cat don’t get along. I have both of them on Prozac in an attempt to lessen their aggression toward each other.

Last but not least, Nico is the newest member of the family. I saw his photo on FB in March and had to help. He’s 18, and in the photo his right eye was a slightly bulging solid white. I had to have it removed. His owner had cancer and had to give him up when she could no longer care for him. He’s still working on finding his place here.

There have been many others over the years that are no longer with me. Poor Humphrey passed away only five days after I adopted him, and Midori made it just five months. Shiloh was expected to live only a few weeks or months but he was with me for three years against all odds.

I go into each adoption knowing it might be a short relationship. I give them live for however long I can.

 

Love, not live
I have their ashes and will probably plant memorial bushes for each one at my new home once I move. They’re all loved family members no matter how short or long a time we had together.

Happy Tails: Meet Toonces, Toddley & Tigger

Author’s Note: Thanks so much to Miss Jill for letting me bombard her with questions about her cats. You can follow them on Toddley’s Facebook page.

Can you tell me what got in interested in adopting rescue cats?

My dad adopted my first cat, Slapshot, when I was 5. It was love at first site and I have loved cats ever since that day. I am especially passionate about rescue cats. They are innocent, beautiful animals that deserve love and wonderful homes. If I can do anything at all to improve the life of an animal, I will do it. They all deserve love and good lives.

How many cats do you currently have, what are their names and ages?

I have three boys. Tigger is 17 (black kitty), Toonces is 11 and Toddley is 4.

I inherited my dads and brothers 2 girl kitties when they passed away recently. They now live upstairs with my mom in a separate apartment. There is Sally Mae who is 13 and Bella who is 2 1/2.

Can you explain how Toddley got his bare belly?

Toddley has had health issues since he was a baby. He’s had bladder surgery because he has bladder stones and also has very sensitive skin. A year ago he had a specialized surgery that basically made him a girl cat. His stones were blocking him, so they removed part of the penis and opened up his urethra so the stones can pass through easily. They shaved his belly and bottom and the hair never grew back 😹

His tantrums are quite famous, what sets them off?

Toddley likes to have things his way all the time. If any small thing changes, watch out! He will throw a huge tantrum. He threw his first tantrum the day I brought him home from the shelter. He had found a piece of plastic and I took it away from him. He threw himself upside down, screamed and flailed his legs. He continues to throw tantrums almost daily.

Why does he like to root through garbage?

I think Toddley is part pig 😹. He has a giant nose and is constantly rooting around through everything. I clean out his nose every week and find all sorts of nonsense in there.

Why is Toonces always surprised?

Toonces is the sweetest rescue kitty I’ve ever met. He’s always happy and loves everyone. His face is permanently “surprised”.

Why is Sally always face planting?

Sally is sick of her brothers nonsense and needs to take naps on her face to get a break.

What tips do you have for someone wanting to foster a rescue cat?

Do it! It was the best thing I’ve ever done in my life. Being able to give an innocent animal a chance at a good life is very rewarding. Millions of innocent animals are killed every year. If I can save one, then my life has had a purpose. You will never regret it!

Do you have any additional tips or tricks you have learned over the years with your cats?

They bring me so much joy and laughter. I’m not sure if I have any tips, but I can tell you that cats bring me so much joy and love. I can’t imagine my life without them.

Anything else you would like to add?

Thank you so much for wanting to hear about my furry family!

 

Dedication:

This article is dedicated to the loving memory of Jill’s father John and brother  Jason who both loved her cats very much.

Extra Love Needed: Meet Jinx

  Author’s Note: Thanks to Ty for letting me ask questions about his girl Jinx. Pictures used with permission
What is her name and how old is she?
My little girl is called Jinx and she’s now 7 years old.
Where did her name come from?
Erm…well….she was quite accident prone in the early months so I thought she was Jinxed.
How did she come to live with you?
She found me when she was about 5 months old. I was dropping my partner home when a fluffball darted across in front of the car. I stopped, turned off the engine and put the window down. A tiny little face looked up at me and meowed. Once I knew she was out of the way I drove on, parked the car and went in to find food for her. I made a sound with my lips that I never made before, a popping noise, and she came running to me. She followed me in doors and it was then I noticed her eye. She sat under a table, head tilted to the side and watched me. I sat on the floor across from her and watched her. I was living in a rented apartment at the time and my housemate had said no to any pets so I ended up taking her up to the local SPCA.
Once I got home and told my housemate about her he said I should have kept her. It took me 3 months but I got her back on New Years Eve 2010 and she’s been with me since. We got another cat when my partner and I moved in together in 2012.
His name was Dougal. They didn’t get along. Dougal died in 2014. We then got Jaded and Gonzo. Jasper loved Jinx but Gonzo has never liked her. Jasper died in 2015, same way as Dougal, hit by a car.
So now it’s Jinx and Gonzo. I tried making her an indoor only cat but she had no intention of complying. She’s both I suppose – she comes and goes. We have a microchip cat flap which she uses.
When did you notice her eye?
I saw, on the night we met, that her eye was not right. Once I got closer to her I noticed it was infected and she couldn’t open it as there was so much puss Etc. She doesn’t need drops or anything like that. I don’t think she knows that she’s not 100% so she just does her thing. I *would* keep a close eye on her but I can’t keep up with her.
 

Meet Jeremy “Catman” Grimm

   Author’s Note: This is a departure from the usual pet interviews as I wanted to interview a self proclaimed “cat man” Mr. Jeremy Grimm. Pictures used with permission. Many apologizes to him for not having this ready on time. 🙁 

How many cats do you have? What are their names?

I have three cats. Bonnie and Clyde who are twins and Asslina.

 How did they come to live with you?

I originally had zero cats. Then one day my wife wanted a dog. We ended up at the Humane Society to adopt the dog we picked out and my son’s noticed these two kittens going absolutely crazy behind the glass playing with them. Next thing you know I’m driving home with three animals. That was about 5 years ago now. For all of those 5 years those cats ignored me and in return I ignored them too. I didn’t want a cat as I work every day farming anyways. Then one day last October, I come home from work and there is this big gray cat sitting in my sunset chair. I live in the country and like to sit out in my garage and watch the sunset from time to time. I thought well okay he will be gone when I get done with my shower but never the less he persisted. Day after day this cat was in my chair. I’d shoo him away…the next day he’d come back. The thing is he had fleas really bad. So I had enough and packed him in my truck and took him to a buddies farm about ten miles away….said toodaloo and went on home. I enjoyed my chair for one more week and he was back.

He walked all the way back. So I thought if this asshole was this determined then I’m keeping him. I brought him in and gave him a flea bath and for three months I grew to LOVE that cat. When I wasn’t at work he’d never leave my side. Then one day after the New Year I found him under the table forever asleep. I took care of him before my kids woke up. Shortly after I got a call from a friend saying this elderly woman had passed and if I’d be interested in her cat. I said sure and renamed her Asslina.

Asslina immediately hid and that’s where ‘C’Mere and let me love you!’ comes from. I’d say it every day to coax her out of hiding. Now she never leaves my side.

 How did the pants end up on the fridge?

To this day the pants cat bed on the fridge remains a mystery. Nobody seems to know how they got there. So they remain.

Does “C’mere and let me love you” really work?

I’ve tried C’MERE AND LET ME LOVE YOU! on stray cats, a turkey, two deer, and countless pigs. I have some kinks to work out with it yet.
I feel like I’m now a cat gear model. I identify with it. All my cats LOVE me except the two. And the ones outside….but soon…oh yes…they will love me too!

Maybe you need to try catnip and tuna on the cats
I was able to get one using Temptations treats. Unfortunately they are also covered in fleas and they come and go. Farms have lots of mice and rodents to feast on.
 

I have to admit you made the romper look good. 

My wife loves the romper. She’s the one who made it.
 It’s people insecure with their own manhood that don’t like it.
I enjoy laughter. I don’t let negativity take away from anything I do. It’s fun for me too
Do you have any advice for people trying to get cats to love them?
You have to put a little gravel into your voice. You also have to be able to run fast. The cat can run but truthfully it just wants to be loved. Also they like it if you wear a romper…with cats on it.
what about cat socks?
Socks, masks, cat slippers, all work wonderfully
What about cat masks?
I feel the cat likes the mask. Of course they run but it’s just them playing. Like Pepe le Pew.
Cmere and let me love you!
  
That’s all they want!
Anything else you can think to add about yourself or you cats?
I feel like I’m now a cat gear model. I identify with it. All my cats LOVE me except the two. And the ones outside….but soon…oh yes…they will love me too!
(Jeremy with his newest addition Madam Hooch)
Dedication:
This interview is dedicated to the loving memory of Flintlock
Fly free sweetie, you will always be loved.

Extra Love Needed: Meet Tigress

Author’s Note: Many thanks to Miss Elizabeth for letting me ask her questions about Tigress. Pictures used with permission.

What is her name and how old is she?

Her name is Tigress, she will be five in (I’m guessing) mid November.

How did she come to live with you?

She came to me after my sister’s husband found her and her brother on the side of the road, out in the country. We suspect they were dumped there. She didn’t really bond with my sister, so she was going to find her a new home. I said no because I already had 2. I went to her house on Christmas eve (an little under 2 hours away) and ended up falling in love. She came home with us that night, cuddled and purred the whole way home.

Did you know she had asthma if not, how did you find out?

I did not know at that point that she has asthma. I found out when she was 2. I thought she had a hairball problem, googled remedies, and came across a video of a cat having an asthma attack, it was identical. A trip to the Vet, with x rays revealed that she does in fact have it.

What are they doing to treat flare ups?

It was the first case her vet had seen in real life. At the time, we treated with a steroid shot during flair ups, when they became more frequent, we decided to try her on a preventive medicine (terbutaline) and oral prednisone as needed. Over time, with positive reinforcement, she learned to come to me for her medicine. She rarely needs prednisone anymore and hasn’t needed a shot in over a year. As far as I can tell, dust triggers her asthma, but it’s hard to tell. She is strictly indoor, but I know we can bring stuff in on our clothes.

What advice do you have for others who have a cat with asthma?

The best advice i can offer is to take it seriously and to treat it. We have 3 other cats, one of them attacks Tigress on a regular basis but I don’t know that it really has to do with asthma. One cat appears to attempt to comfort her when she has an attack.

Happy Tails: Meet Brat, Geo & Rags

Author’s Note: Many thanks to Vicat Furrington   for letting me interview her about her furry family. Pictures used with permission. 
How many pets do you currently have? What are their names? 
I currently have 2 cats,  Brat and Rags, and 1 dog, Geo
How did they come to live with you?
All 3 were rescues. Geo came first. He was the dog of a guy about to go to jail for several months, they were homeless and living out of a van in winter in Nebraska. I had a giant NOPE, and immediately took him home with me. He was a year and a half old.
About 6 months later, one stormy night Geo and I heard a mew from outside but in the deluge couldn’t locate where. The next moron we found Rags stuck in the mud beneath the propane tank and Brat under the bushes. They were 9 werks old, and had been born to a semi-feral cat who lived down the road, but the rest of the litter had died. I had delivered them, so I guess when things went badly, those 2 struck out to find me.
Does Brat have asthma or another medical condition that causing him to have problems breathing? What is normally used to keep him calm?
Brat was born butt first, and got stuck. I was able to pull him out and save him and the mom and the other 4 kittens. But there was damage to his lungs, causing what I now know as Non-Contagious ﹰBirth ﹰTrauma-Induced ﹰFeline ﹰAcute ﹰRespiratory ﹰDistress ﹰSyndrome. It is rare, and before Brat no cat ever made it past 2. His 7 now…
 
It is really rare because there is no real research about it. There was 100% mortality rate, so why research something we can’t cure? But we can. He can go from peppy snarky demanding bratty to losing 15% oh his body weight overnight, fish gasping on the floor and drowning in his own fluids. He gets into the crouch with full neck extension, which is a very bad sign for any cat with respiratory issues.
But. He has lasix and prednisone for during the episodes, we do steamies in the bathroom with sweet peppermint oil in the water. When coughing I hold him upright and massage his chest to stop spasms or he would cough himself apart internally. His triggers are stress, heat, and pollutants so we try to avoid those. It is an ongoing battle and worth every minute.
What breed of dog is Geo?
His coat looks so shaggy he looks so pettable.
Geo is half Westie and half Bichon, and in perpetual need of trimming because his fur grows so fast! And the sweetest doggy I’ve ever met.
How many pets have you rescued?
I’ve lost count, really. There have been hundreds, including raccoons, squirrels, a snake, cats, dogs…
What tips/tricks/suggestions do you have for others looking to rescue/adopt?
Never rule out an older animal or one with health issues. Sometimes those are the most fulfilling experiences of your life.
 
Is there anything else you would like to add about your furry children?
They save me just as much as I save them.

Extra Love Needed: Meet Lenny

Author’s Note: Miss Claire for taking time to answer questions about her extra love needed furbaby Lenny. All pictures used with permission.

I am curious how the other members of the family react to him (assuming you have other cats).

I have 5 cats in total. They all seem to let Lenny away with everything! With food Lenny will run round and take food out of their mouths!!! It’s like they know he is special.

How did he come to live with you?

When he was a kitten the breeder wasn’t sure if he would survive as he was so small. When he was 13weeks old he was 710g. When we went to see him he looked very poorly. He had gooey eyes and was very smelly. We were hesitant to take him but after many discussions with my husband we felt he needed our help as eating communally wasn’t helping. At the time the breeder had 18 cats in a small mobile home. He couldn’t possibly be getting the attention he needed.

Did you have to syringe feed him? Did the vet say if this a disorder he developed as a kitten?

He had no problem eating he just face plants everything you give him. It ends up his nose and all round his face which he can’t wash himself. He had conjunctivitis. We treated that and it cleared. I then received an email from the breeder that she had sine test results for Lenny. He had 3 bacterial infections one being pseudomonas. The conditions where he was born was not very sanitary especially the amount of cats in one place. So hearing he wasn’t well wasn’t a surprise. When I took him to the vet she was shocked. She said I should take him back to breeder. I couldn’t. I’d had him 2 weeks and had fallen in love with him. Instead I emailed the breeder and explained what the vet said. She said she would take him back and I could have Jimmy instead. I said no I would have Jimmy and keep Lenny. I would look after Lenny through whatever happens. If he grew into a normal cat then I would make a payment for Jimmy otherwise we were quits. She agreed. So we got Jimmy who is Lenny’s half brother.

Is there anything else you would like to share about him?

I have to clean Lenny on a regular basis as he often poops his pants. I have trimmed his fur to avoid having to get clumps out his fur! When he is really bad he gets a bath which he really hates!

The vet thinks he was either born like it or that it was a difficult birth. He said in natural selection he probably wouldn’t have survived….

He is a funny little boy. He doesn’t know how to ‘cat’. He can’t jump or climb. He has the tiniest Miow which we it hear when he wants his wet food. He spends most of the time sleeping or just watching the others hare round the house. He likes to play with string and bugs and flies!

We have a catio so if I let him he stays out there all night bug watching. If I bring him in I put him on the bed and he sleeps on the pillow with his head propped. If I scratch his ear he puts his paws on too of my hand and puts his head on top!

The vet doesn’t know what will happen with Lenny. Without expensive scans it’s hard to say. Who knows. All I know is I will care for him for however long it takes. Whether that will be 6 months or 6 years.

We both had doubts whether the breeder would keep Lenny or have him put to sleep. For us we had to keep him.

Does anyone else have a disability?

This last one is Cookie she is a rescue. She was found living in a greenhouse living on insects and bird food. She has an air pistol pellet in her knee. When she came she was a nervous wreck. Now she is very confident and likes a fuss

 

Does anyone try to groom lenny?

We do but he hates it. I can only think it’s because he is so skinny it’s not very comfortable. But because he can’t wash if I brush him within a few minutes he’s back looking a scruff! He tolerates a certain amount then screams to be let go. I usually get enough time to clean up his bits and his face. Bath time involves the husband as I can’t hold him as he wriggles too much.Jimmy his brother sometimes pins him down and washes him…. I wish he would do an all over! Lenny doesn’t let him for very long. I think he likes being a stinky teenager!

After a bath he is super fluffy. And smells like a baby! Then he goes and rolls in the dust outside!!!

Sounds like a petulant child

Very much so. He almost knows when I need to clean him up and he leads me a right merry dance. He rubs behind the sofa and hides under the chair where no one can reach him lol. The smell of food usually gets him out!!!

 

Anything else you want to add about him or his siblings?

They all get on great. When Jimmy or Penny (both 11 months) play fight with lenny they seem to be very gentle with him. Yet Lenny will climb on top of Jimmy and try chewing at him. They are funny to watch as Jimmy could slap him down in a second but he doesn’t. Even cookie plays chase with him but doesn’t get her claws out. It’s like they know he’s not like them. Animals are just awesome.