What’s a good title for this?

Dismal and his children celebrate Yule, and with Yule coming so close to their Winter Break *where they travel to their mother’s*, we ended up opening some stuff up on Friday, so that they would have time to play with things before they had to literally jet off.
Whatever Dismal gives me, I usually wait and open it on Christmas so I have something to do, but I open whatever the kids give me, when they open theirs.

From loving Child 2, Catsarell, coloring books from my Amazon Wishlist:

AND G@*#&^$! IT
Child 1:

It’s a cat toy

He was so thrilled for this because he imagines the cats annihilating it.
THERE IS A TRUMP THING IN MY HOUSE.

Has your cat stopped eating?

Tommy decided to do that a few days ago. We didn’t know if he was just picky, having switched foods again, or maybe he was having trouble smelling, or generally “What is going on with my cat?”.

One of the first lines of defense if your cat is losing their appetite is FortiFlora made by Purina.

Mom that I am, I bought three boxes and next-day shipped them.

It’s not exactly cheap, and each sachet is about a gram. Lucky for me, I have three boxes now on hand, because Tommy decided to eat the next morning before the shipment arrived.

Dismal decided to have a little fun and see just how crack-licious this stuff is for kitties, so he opened a packet, and waved it around each of our cats. They went nuts. I told him we were lucky no one tried to chew into the unopened boxes.

So, of course if your animal is ill, I want you to see a doctor. But there is a non medicated appetite stimulant, FortiFlora, that might help out. It’s marketed as a probiotic for poorly cats, so while the microbes in this may die over time and expire, you can store it in the freezer indefinitely.

Kitty handbag off Amazon. New perspective. Harbl.

Please spay or neuter.It's a handbag with a harbl and obligatory asterisk. #catsofinstagram

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Sometimes they need it more than you do

Tommy Gargoyle is in love with winter coats. #cats #catsofinstagram #catsofig

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I got bit again. Why, bird? Why?

da dam birb

You can’t just keep them locked up because there is a 20% chance they’ll misbehave. Idris wanted to hang out again. I go into this, fully understanding that there may be something I don’t recognize that I’m doing, and she’ll bite me. Or she’ll just bite me because she’s happy, or I’m not looking at her enough, or not blowing enough kissies, or not taking her around the house. I DON’T KNOW.

Idris was on my shoulder earlier, and she bit my ear. K. Fine. I went to go get Starbucks with Dismal and came back and let the girls back out and Idris wanted to hang out again. This time we made it past the five minute mark, and things seemed okay. Soon after, she reached over from my shoulder, and bit me right in the middle of my cheek again. I flung her. She flew back to the cage.

Now, she is asking if anyone would like to hang out again.

Biting bird

dam birb

Things have been going so well lately, with regards to the birds. Koi is turning 7 next month. Her bird, Jak, is turning 8 in July. This there is this birb. Dam birb: Idris. Idris will be turning 6 in February on Valentine’s Day.

I’ve been though bitey bird spells before, but they were with my Koi Monkey, and she and I had to work out a system. We worked that that instead of her biting me when she did not want to step up onto my hand, that she would take a step or two away from me. Instead of getting her to step up on my hand to be put back in the cage, we worked out a hand gesture that tell’s her it’s really business right now “I need you to go to your room”, and she’ll put herself away. We went through all this from ages three to five. I even changed that when I ask her for a kissy, I get my nose tapped on with her beak, instead of offering my lips. We also touch my fingertip to her beak to do a kissy, too.

So what’s up with my Iddy Bird? Idris has always been the most social bird with adults in the house. She loves to see you, hang out with you, fly to you, and now, bite you. She’s so excited! Sometimes she flies to my shoulder and starts talking to me and grooming me, and then comes around and tries to bite me right on the mouth or on the side of my cheek. I’ve checked… there are no blemishes there for her to try to groom off of you. Then you want to get her away from your face, so she bites your hand because she’s so excited! She’s not done playing! I don’t want to go back! So, now my hand is bit, my face is bit, and there’s this happy little bird that just got flung back to the cage.

Also, when it’s time to be put away, you will get the bites of “DON’T WANNA”. Usually I can count to three and these bites will lessen immensely, or completely stop if she’s given up. But, she doesn’t use the cue I give Koi to put herself away. She knows it. She’ll even start to do it for her daddy, because reasons, but then try to psyche him out like “OH WAIT. WHILE YOU’RE HERE, CAN WE PLAY SOME MORE?”.

I have a big bruise on the back of my index finger because dis dam birb.
She’s just a happy little girl.

What do you want for Christmas?

There are two high tech feeders we use in our home, and they may have the solution for you.

The Feed and Go automated feeder has 6 compartments and syncs up every hour to the network to keep the feeds on an accurate schedule. These feeders have an app, a web friendly interface, a camera, and voice recording. We use two on the same schedule for our boys.

The girls use the SureFeed in the next room. It only opens for their RFID chips. If your cat won’t wear a collar to have it programmed to their tag, you can also program it to the microchip that we hope all your kitties have located near their shoulder.

But where exactly did that feline friend of yours come from? Those looks are striking, and they have so much to say! If you’d like to know more about your feline’s genetic history *breed, predisposition towards illness*, then there is a company out of Redondo Beach, CA called BasePaws. Request a CatKit, register it, return it, allow for processing, and learn more about your best friend. We think our vocal Russian Blue Mix may have a surprising amount of generic Tabby in him, and I’ll tell you more about it when we receive our results.

If you have birds in the house, like we do, you may appreciate a subscription to Squawk Box. It comes filled with paper that your fids might like to rummage through and chew on, as well as toy or two, a recipe, and some snacks. We had a six month subscription where the birds got to try new things each month, and this also gives you a chance to try new things you may not know your bird could love.

While we’re on subscription boxes, I love my Crazy CatLadyBox sub that Dismal sends me every month. You get some amazing things, both fun and beautiful, and the CRAZY part is this is the box that comes with two toys for your kitties each month. It’s not just for you! Any when you empty the box, you just leave it out in your cats’ common area. It’s the perfect size for them to lounge in each month.

RescueBox works with both cats and dogs, and every purchase you make goes back into charitable donations of food and needed vaccines. “With every RescueBox, subscribers will receive a curated box filled with high-quality toys, delicious treats, and other tail-wagging products that have been vetted by the pets of our team. The best part? Every delivery will feature a rescue story that wouldn’t be possible without the generous donation that your purchase provides. RescueBox is a special monthly delivery that both you and your pet can truly get excited and feel GOOD about.”

Now, something for your small mammals: Oxbow Hay Stacks
If you’re going out of town and you’re taking your caged bunnies, guinea pigs, chinchillas with you, or deciding to leave them under someone else’s care, these things are great. The hay is compressed, so there is a sizable amount in the pucks that come in the stack. I wish I would have had these in their cages when we moved across country. We used them when I left for vacation during the summer because Dismal can’t handle loose hay – it’s dusty and makes his allergies go nuts.

YouCaring for Miss Bailey, a boxer, who needs a new knee

A friend of mine has been working on this problem for a while. Bailey is a very active girl who came into their hearts as a rescue. First one knee went, and then the other. In the meantime, when he was going to work towards putting his puppy back together, she got gravely ill with pancreatitis. I know as well as anyone what these emergency illnesses can do to your funds, and even your credit. Thankfully she seems to have fully recovered. Afterwards he tried to get her into a research hospital, but the formalities say that it may even cost him money even if they don’t perform the procedure, and it’s very far away to cart the doggy around on an “If”. So, we’re giving it a shot to see if we can’t get Bailey even just 1 new knee to start, and then work towards the other.

Thanks for taking the time to read this and please feel free to share.

Making home made raw cat food and deep thoughts

Right now I’m waiting for the turkey thighs to get their partial cook for surface bacteria.

I rolled out of bed late today. When I should have been sleeping last night, I was up having flashbacks of my alpha male, Tommy, going to the hospital. About a week ago marks 1 year since his medical problems began. When everything hit the fan, I had started to make these changes to his diet, hoping against hope that he would not have any recurrences. First we moved him to canned food, and about midway through December, we started to move him to commercial raw food. He’s eating that right now because of when Thanksgiving landed this year. I ran a bunch of numbers, and by the end of December I had all my supplies to start making the food myself. He was switched over on New Year’s Eve.

Then he relapsed twice in February and went into surgery.

So, here I am. I am currently covered in cats while the turkey is in the oven. I get a half hour (because they are large thighs) so I’m watching the beginning to Full Metal Jacket again with Stewart in my lap, Amalie at my ankles, and Tommy at the foot of the bed.

I applied to the community college to see about attending a writing course soon. I need to make sure y’all can understand me more often.

One day, I’m not going to have to worry about making this food myself. I’d buy it again, but I’m fairly certain my costs are now around $90 a month for the two boys on a premium of rabbit and turkey. Saving that money over having a company make it end up being shifted over into buying better food for my girls. The ladies haven’t taken to raw, and are on a diet of high quality/low carb dry with a large can of wet each day.

#BasePaws feline DNA CatKit

A few short weeks ago, we were provided 2 CatKits by BasePaws, a company out of Redondo Beach CA, who are now able to process your cat’s DNA sequence. In exchange for the CatKits, I would love to provide you with as much info as I can about the process, as well as post about my updates after my CatKits contents are done developing.

I’m sorry this took so long. Everything got neglected around here for about 2 weeks between my back issues that came up, and then the Thanksgiving holiday.

I find the BasePaws FAQ page as a good place to start.

I have often felt like these were my two most common questions:

“Do you need blood? Will this hurt my cat? Is this magic?
Absolutely not! We love cats and are committed to using only non-invasive procedures to collect DNA samples. This will not hurt the cat…and, like all science, it’s a bit meowgical!”

I can attest that this didn’t harm the cats. You will see from their videos that they were a bit startled. Removing the adhesive tape sounds like velcro.

“Do you test for breed?
Breed and ancestry are among our top priorities and will be included in your cat’s report within six months. As we expand our kitty community, your cat’s breed and ancestry will be continue to be refined. The initial report will include the Wild Kitten Index, which provides information about how much of your cat’s ancestry can be traced back to the various wild cat species. The analysis includes the review of 1,000s genetic variants that are represented more prevalently across the genome in within each of the species.”

Read more FAQs in the link above.

Pricing is set at $95, however if you follow their blog, sometimes you will find that they are screening for certain disorders to build up the database, and with supporting medical records, they may want your participation for free, so check that out. Also, Catster has this in their #giftguide this year and is offering $25 off with code “CATSTER” at checkout.

Now, for demonstrations:


Giving her the sticky butt


Collection 1


Intermission


Yue’s CatKit didn’t include the same materials that are in Tommy Gargoyle’s CatKit. I was told that his version is the older one that they might not be using much now.

Getting ready with all the supplies and his father


And then waiting with the last strip

I can get these in the mail tomorrow and hopefully we’ll get some new insight into Yue and Tom in approximately 2 months. While the kits weren’t terribly invasive, the daddy man did say that this probably would not be the best idea on our half-feral black and white tuxedo boy Stewart. Tom tried to rip his first adhesive strip off with his teeth and he’s the most tolerant cat I have.

I hope this has taken some of the mystery out of the process, and as I learn more, so will you.