Wednesday, February 28, 2018

A Very Wordy Wednesday

Hi, guys! It's me, pup Astrid, today!

Aren't my eyes just so pretty? My mom always tells me they are. I agree. Speaking of my pretty brown eyes, that's just one of the fun facts I'm going to grace you all with today.

That's right. I may not be a cat, but I still wanted to participate in answering the 18 facts that our stunning pal CK first shared on her blog not long ago. I hope you kitties out there don't mind me joining in on the fun. I mean, I do really like cats, if that helps you make up your mind about me.

So, here are some fun facts about me!

1. Favorite smell – Peanut butter! If I smell peanut butter, it better be going into my mouth.

2. Last time I hissed That's not really my style. Actually, any form of vocalization isn't really my style. My mom always asks me why I'm a mute. (Because you talk enough for the both of us, lady, that's why.)

3. Favorite pizza Any pizza will do. Extra cheese would be much appreciated.
4. Favorite flower Grass. I like to eat grass. Even when my mom tells me not to.

5. Favorite dog breed Mutts like me.

6. Favorite ice cream Ice cream! I'll take any and all ice cream you have, please.

7. Pet peeve When humans try to groom me. I don't really like being combed, or having my nails trimmed, or being bathed. Hands off, humans, I look gorgeous already. If they insist, though, I will only cooperate if I get peanut butter.

8. Shorts or jeans I don't really like to play dress-up. What's so wrong with going out in the nude?

9. Color of your PTU I don't have to be incarcerated to go outdoors.

10. Color of your eyes Brown. Did you see my pretty picture above?
11. Favorite food Peanut butter!

12. Least favorite food Any and all fruits and veggies. Yucky, nasty, disgusting health food.

13. Favorite holiday Um, how about Christmas? My mom tells me Christmas isn't all about the gifts, but I really do like getting gifts. I guess my birthday is pretty fun then, too. I got lots of goodies for my birthday last week.

14. Night owl or morning person Neither. I love my beauty sleep, and I prefer to go to bed early and sleep in late.

15. Favorite day of the week As long as I get a walk, lots of attention, and some peanut butter, I'll take whatever day it is. Oh, and if I get to see my Pawpaw, that's the best day ever.

16. Do you have a nickname? I get called Puppy and Puppy Dog a lot, which I don't mind so much. I also get called Big Girl. My mom thinks it's funny to call me Astrid Disastrid. Get it? It's a play on my name and the word "disaster", apparently, because it would seem that I tend to leave a bit of destruction in my large-bodied wake. So be it.

17. Favorite music None, please. If music starts to play when I'm trying to nap, I will leave the room. I want my peace and quiet.

18. Tattoos I have a scar where my cancerous toe was removed that I like to show off like a tattoo. Does that count?


Our Doodle of the Day:

Our Tip of the Day:
Today is the last day of National Cat Health Month. For our final tip, we're closing out our discussion on medication administration with subcutaneous injections. This topic might sound scary, but with some practice, and perhaps a cooperative kitty, you can become a pro at it.

First and foremost, ensure that you and your kitty are as comfortable and ready as possible for injection time. This may indeed take trial and error. It may also take time for your kitty to become accustomed to injections. One option is to have your cat sit on your lap. You can place a towel or blanket on your lap, as an added protection against claws. Placing your kitty on a table, counter, or even the back of a sturdy chair or couch are other potential options. If you have a helper, they can try to hold your kitty, with said kitty wrapped in a blanket or towel if needed, while you give the injection.

That being said, before getting too far ahead of yourself, make sure that you properly prepare the syringe and needle. If you have any questions regarding the use of a syringe and needle, of course ask your veterinarian, or even request a demonstration. Once you get used to it, it's really not as scary as it seems. With the needle and syringe ready, depending on the medication being injected, be sure to shake, roll, and invert the bottle as needed. Then, of course, using the needle and syringe, draw up the prescribed dosage.

Giving a cat a subcutaneous injection is often best done in the skin near their shoulders. Sometimes, if needed, it can also be given in the skin of the legs, near the hipbones. Before giving the injection, you will need to "tent" your kitty's skin. In other words, pick up the skin between your thumb and index finger. If you are right-handed, you can do this with your left hand, so that you can give the injection with your right hand. While preparing to inject, try to keep the needle more or less parallel to the cat's back, as going in at too much of an angle could lead to issues such as going through the skin on the side or hitting muscle.

Now, with the needle parallel to the back, you will want to give the injection in the "tent" of skin that you've formed by pulling up the skin. Push the needle into the skin firmly enough to slide the needle through, but not so hard that the needle ends up going through the skin on other side, or that the syringe slams against your cat's tented skin. Again, this all might sound scary, but the more times you do this, the more you you will get the feel of it.

At this point, obviously, you will inject the medication. Push the syringe's plunger, making sure that you don't wiggle the syringe and needle too much while you do this. Depending on how you feel most comfortable holding the syringe, you will typically be pressing the plunger with either your index finger or thumb. Once you have given the injection, slide the needle back out, place the safety cap on it, and safely dispose of it. Check to make sure that there is no moisture on your cat's back, which might indicate that the needle either went through to the other side, or that it did not go in at all.

Related to this, if you are giving subcutaneous fluids, such as for a kitty with kidney disease, the general procedure will be very much the same, but the fluids will take longer to complete. You will inject the needle in the same manner as mentioned above, but your kitty will need to remain in place for minutes at a time. So, be sure that both you and your kitty are comfortable before beginning subcutaneous fluids administration. Also be sure that you follow other instructions for giving fluids at home, including warming the fluids bag, ensuring the line has been tested, and so forth. Veterinarians will most often give a demonstration on fluid administration before having you do it on your own. Of course, never be afraid to ask your veterinarian any questions that you have regarding any form of medication administration.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Toothie Tuesday

We've been trying to give you guys a variety of Tuesday posts lately. We've done some Toesies Tuesdays, Tabby Tuesdays, Tummy Tuesdays, Tuxie Tuesdays, and even recently a Tushie Tuesday. Now, we have for you Toothie Tuesday, starring none other than Eddy's adorable snaggletooth!

Not the best shot, I'll be the first to admit, but I always just take what I can get when it comes to this elusive girl named Eddy. This girl likes to move. Eddy's photos are ridden with all shades of blur, and they showcase my lack of ability to alter camera settings in time to snap a decent shot of her. Some days, I think that maybe I should try to tweak photos like this a bit, to enhance them so that they're at least a bit, well, better. But then I remember that I have next to no skills in the world of photo editing, and so there ends that thought.

Oh, and speaking of less-than-ideal shots, this one happened during that same photo shoot as well:


That all being said and seen, it is now Eddy's turn to share 18 facts about herself. Our friend CK first shared these 18 facts about herself, and invited everyone to join her in the fun. Evan and Toby have already taken their turns, and now Eddy has a little to share about herself!


It's the one and only Eddy here now, friends! My mom said I needed to answer these questions about myself, so I did. I hope you like what I have to say!

1. Favorite smell – My dry food. Fresh dry food smells like heaven. Fish food smells great, too.

2. Last time I hissed Thimble and I like to have hissing matches all the time. Our mom says we're catty. I mean, yeah, we are cats.

3. Favorite pizza No, thanks. Human food is gross.

4. Favorite flower Flowers are too boring for my taste.

5. Favorite dog breed I'm not a huge fan of dogs. Pup Astrid is the only dog I tolerate. Sometimes, I like to chase her to remind her who's boss around here.

6. Favorite ice cream None. See #3. Human food is still gross.

7. Pet peeve When the neighbor cat shows up outside. Mom says he's our friend and that I should be nice. I disagree. He gazes in our doors and windows like a proper creep. Sometimes he even hangs from the window screen. I charge the window and throw myself at it when he does that.

8. Shorts or jeans I'll go without, thank you.

9. Color of your PTU Pink. The most evil pink thing that's ever existed.

10. Color of your eyes My mom tells me they're aquamarine. What a mouthful.

11. Favorite food My yummy dry food! Oh, and fish food. Double yum!

12. Least favorite food Anything that's not my dry food or fish food.

13. Favorite holiday Christmas! I love love love my Christmas tree. It's so fun to climb in and play in and sleep in! Hmmm, I miss my Christmas tree.

14. Night owl or morning person What is this thing called sleep? Speed naps are the only way to go, if you ask me.

15. Favorite day of the week I love when my mom stays home all day. So, Saturday or Sunday for the win!

16. Do you have a nickname? My mom calls me Eddy Spaghetti all the time. She must think herself a poet (she's not, FYI). Eddy Weddy is another one. Again, she is no poet. My mom also calls me Edelweiss. And then there are those rude times she calls me Wild Child, and sometimes Silly Girl. Oh, she also calls me Baby Girl, and I really like that one.

17. Favorite music Well, I like to sing to my mom. Sometimes, Evan and I perform duets for her. Those are fun.

18. Tattoos Maybe. Maybe not.

Well, that was fun! Do you know who will be sharing facts here on our blog tomorrow? That pup Astrid, that's who. I think the only facts needed in her case are that she's a dog and she drools. Need I say more?

Anyway, we love learning more about our friends. So, as CK said, do feel free to share these facts about yourself, too!


Our Doodle of the Day:
Apparently I'm still in the mood to scribble up some bookish doodles. So, here's a special little pair of bookends that ended up in my sketchbook.

Our Tip of the Day:
Yesterday, we gave a lengthy tip on administering oral medications to your kitty. Today, we're hear to give a lengthy tip on the ins and outs of transdermal medications. Transdermal medications are those applied to and absorbed through the skin. A number of medications can be given this way, such as methimazole (for the treatment of hyperthyroidism) and even famotidine (Pepcid), just to name a couple. If you will be administering transdermal medication for your kitty, of course read the directions as prescribed by your veterinarian, and discuss with your veterinarian any concerns that you have.

So, transdermal medication has to be applied to, obviously, the skin. It is best applied to skin that is clean, free from as much as hair as possible, and where your kitty cannot easily lick or reach. This makes the pinna (the flap of the ear) an ideal place for applying transdermal medication.

To actually apply the transdermal medication, ensure that you are wearing gloves. As its name suggests, this type of medication does indeed absorb through the skin, and that includes your own skin as well as that of your kitty. If your kitty is on transdermal thyroid medication, for example, using your bare hand to apply it could lead to unwanted effects on your own endocrine system. So, put on disposable gloves, which are sometimes even provided with the prescription.

Next, when you and your kitty are ready and your hand is gloved, place the medication on your gloved finger. Transdermal medication is typically provided in pre-filled syringes, from which you can eject intended dosages. Sometimes it is suggested that you squirt the medication onto your index finger, but, ultimately, place it on whichever digit works best for you and for effective administration. I, personally, find it easiest to use my thumb.

Now, when you have the medication on your gloved finger, apply it to the upper to middle part of the pinna of the ear and rub it in. Again, this medication is easily absorbed through the skin, and so excess being left behind is not ideal. So, rub it in as thoroughly as possible, which of course will also ensure that your kitty is receiving his or her full dosage. Do be sure, though, that you don't end up with the medication near the inner portion of your kitty's ear.

Once you have rubbed the medication in, you can dispose of your glove. For optimum safety, you can clean it off first, such as with soap and water. Then, you can remove it using the aid of a paper towel. Then, the glove and paper towel can be disposed of, of course in a receptacle where it cannot be easily removed by any curious paws or hands. Also be sure that you put away the syringes of medication away somewhere.

All of that being said, of course try to make the medication administration process as comfortable as possible for both your kitty and yourself. You can try to do apply transdermal medications when your kitty is relaxed, as long as you are prepared and are able to safely do so without getting any of the medication on yourself or anywhere else besides your kitty's ear. You can also, of course, use treats as a reward. Just as with oral medication administration, you can use a partner-in-crime if needed, or a blanket or towel to help keep your kitty still and safe. Sometimes it takes trial and error to figure out what works best for you and your kitty, and there's nothing wrong with that!

Monday, February 26, 2018

Mancat Monday with a Side of Motivation

Happy Monday, friends! The mancat here with you today is none other than our housemate Toby.

Whoa, it's hard to see Toby past all of that light, isn't it? Nevertheless, this is the photo Toby wanted to share today, because he wanted to show you all just how happy he is that we've finally been having some sunshine. We had days and days of rain, with lots of flooding in our neighborhood. So, some sunny days were much appreciated, by furbabies and humans alike.

You know what else Toby wants to share with you all today? 18 facts about himself! The one and only stunning CK shared these 18 facts about herself, and then invited all of us to do the same. Yesterday Evan shared his facts, today is Toby's turn, and the other furbabies here will be taking their turns this week as well.

As a side note, for those who might not know or might not remember, Toby is my sister's cat (as well as Thimble's litter mate, though they look roughly 0% alike). My sister lives with me, which means Toby is our handsome housemate. Also, I do indeed refer to myself as Toby's auntie, a fact that might help you better understand some of his tips below. Now, on to Toby!


Hi, guys! It's me Toby. I'm so excited that I get to take charge of this blog again. Because, well, it's pretty cool being in charge. Anyway, my auntie told me to tell you all some facts about myself, and here they are!

1. Favorite smell – Strawberry! I love strawberries. If I smell strawberries, I demand one so that I can roll around in it.

2. Last time I hissed A few months ago. My mom took me to my Gammy and Pawpaw's house a while back, and I hissed at their cats. I only like the cats I live with, because I sort of have to.

3. Favorite pizza Is there an olive pizza? I love olives.

4. Favorite flower I love leaves. They are yummy. Oh, and cat grass. That's the best.

5. Favorite dog breed Whatever Astrid is, because she's the best!

6. Favorite ice cream I do like to steal licks of vanilla ice cream. Oh, but is there such a thing as strawberry ice cream? I love strawberries. Did I already say that? 

7. Pet peeve When my mom talks to other cats. When she tries to cheat on me like that, I have to put a stop to it.

8. Shorts or jeans I have built-in chaps.

9. Color of your PTU Black, like me!

10. Color of your eyes My auntie says my eyes are like mood rings, whatever that means. I think maybe they're amber. Or green. Or both?

11. Favorite food Temptations! I will never refuse Temptations. I'm hungry. Can I have some Temptations?

12. Least favorite food Bananas. They smell terrible. They make my nose scrunch up, and then my auntie laughs at me. How rude.

13. Favorite holiday Christmas, because that means lots and lots of boxes! I love boxes.

14. Night owl or morning person I can't commit to either. I sleep whenever, wherever, however. 

15. Favorite day of the week Saturday or Sunday. Can I say both? My mom and auntie are usually home on those days, and that means lots of attention for me.

16. Do you have a nickname? Of course! Let me think, there's Tobe, Tobes, and Toblerone. There's also Toby-Toby-Toby (it has to be said exactly three times or it doesn't count). For some reason, I also get called Sloth and Slowpoke. Oh, my mom calls me Boo-Boo all the time. I really like that one.

17. Favorite music My my mom sings a song to me called "Soft Toby", and I love that. Apparently it wasn't originally written about me, though. It's really called "Soft Kitty" or something like that, but I like "Soft Toby" way better.

18. Tattoos That's a secret.

That was so much fun! I really hope you guys enjoyed learning about me. Like CK said, feel free to share these 18 facts about you, too! We'd love to learn more about all of you.



It's the human again now. I of course wanted to express our gratitude for an award for which our wonderful pals over at Eastside Cats nominated us. It's the Supawstars Spotlight Award!

Thank you so much, our pawsome friends at Eastside Cats! These friends of ours had such sweet things to say about our blog, and it really, truly made our day to read those lovely words.

Now, the rules of this award say that I am meant to choose five pet bloggers and describe why they deserve this award. Here's the thing, I tried. I really tried. But, I simply cannot pare it down to five. 

So, I'm breaking the rules and saying that any and every one of you who wants this award is welcome to accept it from us. Why? Because we count each and every one of you amongst our best of friends. You are all so incredibly kind, compassionate, and supportive, and we feel so blessed to be part of this blogging community.


No, this post is not done yet. We of course still have the Sparks blog hop in which to participate!

This wonderful blog hop is hosted by Annie of McGuffy's Readers. With this hop, we are meant to share positive thoughts to help brighten this often negative world. Here is what I felt inspired to share today:

 (I lost a bit of control on this one and quite nearly lost the battle of legibility. 
In case you can't tell what it says, here is the thought for today: 
Your mind is a weapon. Keep it loaded.)

A mind can be such a powerful thing. Don't let it go to waste. Though, we know none of you will!

Now, we're wishing all of you friends of ours adieu for now. A beautiful day to you!

Our Tip of the Day:
We have three days left of National Cat Heath Month. For these last couple of days, we'll be discussing some methods for administering medication to that kitty of yours. We'll be starting today with oral medications. This is going to be a long one, so kudos to anyone who makes it to the end.

To begin, if your kitty is prescribed a medication in the form of a pill, tablet, or capsule, there are a number of methods for attempting administration. If possible, and if your kitty is open to the idea, you can use pill pockets or another form of treat in which to hide the medication, and then your kitty might simply eat it up that way. Sometimes pills, tablets, or capsules can also be hidden in a bowl of moist food. If it is small enough, the entire pill can be left intact and hidden whole in the food. Or, some pills can be crushed and then stirred in and masked by the moist food. That being said, some pills, tablets, and capsules are not as effective or sometimes not truly safe to crush and expose in this way, so always ask your veterinarian first regarding this method. 

If a kitty will not voluntarily ingest a pill in the above ways, though, then you may very well have to manually pill your cat. First and foremost, be gentle with this method, and make sure your kitty is as comfortable as possible, and of course not harmed. It's also important to ensure that you are not bitten. One of the best methods for pilling a cat involves placing your hand over the cat's head and more or less using their cheekbones as a handle. This way, you can gently tilt your kitty's head back, and they will often then open their mouth on their own. As long as you do it safely, you can also place the tip of a finger on the incisors (not the canines!) of the lower jaw in order to help open the mouth. When your kitty's mouth is open, you can carefully place the pill inside, trying to get it as far back on the tongue as is possible and safe. You can try doing this with the pill plain, or put it in a small treat to better mask it. When the pill is inside the mouth, close your kitty's mouth and gently hold it shut. Sometimes, if needed, blowing on their nose or gently rubbing their throat will prompt them to swallow the pill.

There are also pilling devices on the market. I personally do not prefer to use these, but for kitties who need it, you can perhaps try this method. When using a pilling device, you can use the same methods as indicated above for opening your kitty's mouth, and then use the device to place the pill as far back on the tongue as possible.

For kitties who simply do not tolerate being pilled, there is also the chance that the pill can be suspended in a liquid form. Do discuss this with your veterinarian, though, as this method is not effective with all medications. If the medication at hand is able to be given in liquid form, though, sometimes you can do this yourself, simply by crushing the pill and dissolving it in water or a safe broth or gravy. Other times, pharmacies can prepare a liquid solution for you. For tips on the administration of liquid medications, see below.

Next up, we have liquid oral medications. With these, you use the appropriate syringe or dropper to pull up the prescribed dosage. If your kitty does not sense it and refuse to eat it, you can sometimes mix liquid medication in moist food. If your kitty will not eat food laced with medication, though, then squirting it directly into their mouth is your likeliest option. It is typically recommended that liquid medications be injected into the pocket of space that is between the cheek and the teeth. As needed, you can use the methods indicated above for opening your kitty's mouth for easier administration of the liquid medication. However, do not tilt your kitty's head back when administering liquid medications, as aspiration is possible.

What's more, keep in mind that larger quantities of liquid medications, such as over 0.5 or 1.0 mL of medication, may need to be injected into the mouth in multiple rounds. This is because squirting larger quantities of liquid into your kitty's mouth could be dangerous, such as by potentially leading to aspiration. So, depending on the dosage prescribed, it might be safest to squirt in half or so of the liquid, allowing your kitty to swallow that, and then squirting the rest into the mouth.

Other tips include using having a partner-in-crime to help you administer your kitty's medication. One person can hold the kitty, for example, while the other gives the medication. Whether you are by yourself or have help, you can also use the help of a towel or blanket. You can wrap the kitty in this, to keep them and their legs still during the process.

If you have trouble giving your kitty oral medications, even when using methods such as those discussed above, of course discuss this with your veterinarian. Your veterinarian might be able to suggest other options for medication administration. We will be discussing transdermal medications and subcutaneous injections over the next two days, so if either of those are a solution your veterinarian proposes, we'll be offering tips on those as well.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

A Shiny Selfie and Fun Facts

Evan has a selfie to share with you all today. It's a bright and shiny one, certainly not the best of lighting. Evan's not complaining, though, because he loves his sunshine.

This is, of course, Evan's contribution to the Sunday Selfies blog hop, hosted by the pawsome Kitties Blue over at The Cat on My Head.

That's not all Evan has for you all today, though. Our stunning pal CK recently shared 18 fantastic facts about herself, and invited others to do the same. So, this week, the furbabies around here will all be taking turns sharing these 18 facts about themselves. Evan's up first!


Hello, friends! It's me Evan. As my mom just said, I have some things about myself to share with you all. So, here it goes!

1. Favorite smell – Butter! I can smell butter from a mile away. Well, at least from across the house. My mom doesn't eat butter (something about lactose and a porcelain throne?), but my auntie eats butter. I chase her around the kitchen for it. 

2. Last time I hissed A couple nights ago, actually. I don't hiss often, but when I do, it's usually because my little sister Eddy doesn't know anything about personal space. 

3. Favorite pizza Cheese. Give me all the cheese. 

4. Favorite flower Catnip. I would say more, but then I'd incriminate myself. 

5. Favorite dog breed Astrid! 

6. Favorite ice cream All of them. Give me all the ice cream. Please. 

7. Pet peeve When my mom leaves the house. Why would she do that? If I'm inside the house, there's no reason for her to go outside of the house. 

8. Shorts or jeans I'm a nudist. 

9. Color of your PTU green 

10. Color of your eyes green (with a hint of orange!) 

11. Favorite food Dairy. Anything dairy. Oh, and coconut oil. And Party Mix. Temptations, too. Mmmmm. Yum! 

12. Least favorite food Lemon. I hate when my mom eats lemon, and then her hands smell like lemon, and that's just not cool. 

13. Favorite holiday My mom says I'm a nice Halloween orange, so there's that. 

14. Night owl or morning person Um, morning? My mom is a morning person, and I simply have to be in bed when my mom is, and I get out of bed when she does. So, I guess that makes me a morning kitty. 

15. Favorite day of the week Saturday. That's the day when my mommy rarely leaves the house. I love my hermit of a mommy. 

16. Do you have a nickname? Yes, lots of them. There's Baby Boy, and Momma's Boy. Buddy and Buddy Boy. Evan Fergus, or just Fergus. Handsome Man. Orange Boy. The list goes on and on. 

17. Favorite music I like my original music. I sing to my mom all the time, as loud as I can. I'm sure it's her favorite music, too. I'm a soprano, in case you're wondering. 

18. Tattoos I'll never tell.

I hope you all enjoyed learning more about me! I sure had fun answering these. All of us here are really enjoying these fun Q&As that CK has been sharing. Thanks, CK!

Ta-ta for now, friends!

Our Doodle of the Day:

I guess we're doing a bookish series of doodles now. So, here's the second one in the series.

Our Tip of the Day:
Yesterday, as part of National Cat Health Month, our tip involved food allergies. Keep in mind, though, that cats can of course be allergic to any number of things, not just food. Symptoms such as itchy skin, hair loss, rashes, and so forth can also result from seasonal and airborne allergies, allergies to fleas, and any number of other allergens. A cat can even be allergic to fragrances and other components in items such as cat litter or laundry detergent.

That all being said, if your kitty has dermatological or even respiratory signs of allergies, try to pinpoint when it started, and discuss this with your veterinarian as needed. Keep track of if your cat displays symptoms year-round, or if the symptoms are new. Does your cat have scabs or bites on their skin? Is he or she on monthly preventatives for fleas? Did you start using a new kind of cat litter? What about a new kind of laundry detergent with which you've cleaned blankets and bedding? Think back to even weeks or months ago, as allergies can take time to manifest. If the onset of symptoms can be tracked down to exposure to a new litter or other removable or remediable environmental factor, then it might be an easy fix. If your kitty is diagnosed as having seasonal or airborne allergies, though, then you can discuss with your veterinarian what might be done to help your kitty stay as itch-free and comfortable as possible.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Caturday in the Library

I've been in a very bookish mood lately. Then I realized, I haven't done a bookish doodle in over two weeks. That's blasphemy! I had to remedy that, immediately. So, the first thing that popped into my head was the quaint little library in Belle's village in Beauty and the Beast. I have always loved the concept of that little library, with its wooden ladder to help you reach all of its lovely books. Anyway, one thing led to another, and this ended up in my sketchbook:

This bookwormkitty and her library are of course our entry into the lovely Athena's Caturday Art blog hop.

If you visit Athena, you'll get to see lots of beautiful art. So, go on and pay her a visit!

Wishing all of you friends of ours a most beautiful day!

Our Tip of the Day:
Can you believe that we're still on the topic of food? As we start to close out our National Cat Health Care Month tips, we're here today to offer a bit of a (lengthy) discussion on food intolerances versus food allergies. There is indeed a difference between the two, and both can affect your kitty and his or her health.

A food intolerance occurs when something found in a food cannot be properly digested in the body. For example, lactose intolerance occurs when a cat is deficient in lactase, the enzyme responsible for breaking down lactose, a milk sugar. Such an intolerance can result in diarrhea, vomiting, and other gastrointestinal issues, if the problem food is ingested. Just as with humans, it is indeed possible for cats to be intolerant to foods such as dairy, gluten, soy, corn, and any other number of food ingredients. If your kitty is suffering from diarrhea, vomiting, or other gastrointestinal distress after eating their food, then discontinue the food and discuss the issue with your veterinarian as needed.

Now, as for a food allergy, this is indeed different than an intolerance. A food allergy occurs when antibodies mount a response to a component in the food the cat is eating. In other words, the cat's immune system determines something in the food to be a harmful allergen, and so initiates an allergic reaction. This typically results in dermatological effects, such as itchy skin, scratching, redness, hair loss, and lesions. It is possible for a cat to have an allergy to any number of proteins that he or she has been exposed to in food. The types of food culprits can include beef, lamb, chicken, and turkey, just to name a couple.

That all being said, it can take time to develop an allergic response, as antibodies seen in allergic reactions only form after exposure to the food allergen at hand.. So, if you start your kitty on a new food, it may be a month or more later when they start developing signs such as itchy skin. For this reason, try to keep track of when you start your kitty on new foods, and also what types of food you have fed them. If a food allergy is expected, a veterinarian will often recommend the cat go on a novel diet, typically a diet containing a protein source to which the kitty has never before been exposed and therefore to which the kitty won't mount an allergic response. This is why it is important to keep track of the foods your kitty eats.

The same is important with regard to food intolerances. Food intolerances are more fast-acting than allergic responses, and symptoms such as diarrhea and vomiting are more immediate. In this case also, though, it is still important to keep track of when you start your kitty on new food, or even when you open a new bag of food. Sometimes companies will make even slight changes in a food you've been buying for years, and sometimes those changes mean the introduction of components to which your kitty might be intolerant. So, keep tabs on any and all food going into your cat's body. This way, if need be, you and your veterinarian can determine what might be causing your cat distress, and can find the best options for keeping him or her healthy and happy.

Friday, February 23, 2018

Fill-Ins and Feline Fun

As always, we hope you're all having a happy Friday! And, as always, we'll kick off this wonderful day with the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by the always amazing Ellen of 15andmeowing and Annie of McGuffy's Reader.

Our hosts never fail to give us some fantastic fill-ins, like these here:

1. My favorite president is _________ because _________.
2. This weekend, I have plans to _________.
3. I _________ my _________.
4. I believe _________.

I hope I did these fill-ins proud.

1. My favorite president is Abraham Lincoln, because he had such a major historical impact.
(Being from Illinois, I learned a lot about Illinoisan Abraham Lincoln throughout my years in school. Those lessons on Lincoln never failed to keep my attention. Also, I have heard of his compassion for cats, dogs, and other animals, and I have great respect for that.)

2. This weekend, I have plans to play catch-up.
(I have nothing major planned for this weekend, so I keep telling myself that I'll be catching up on some housework. Let's be honest, though. I'll probably end up snuggled up on the couch with my kitties and pup, getting caught up visiting all of your wonderful blogs, working on our blog, doodling in my sketchbook, reading, writing, doing some Netflix binging, and probably taking a nap or two. That's my kind of weekend.)

3. I love my furbabies.
(In case you didn't already know.)

4. I believe everything happens for a reason.
(Life and death. Joy and sorrow. Good times and bad times. I believe it all happens for a reason. Even if we can't see or understand that reason, I believe it's still there, somewhere.)


Of course, we wouldn't let this Friday come and go without giving you an Eddy fix!

Yes, sometimes getting a shot of Eddy requires sneaking up on her from beneath. That's okay, though, because her chin is pretty darn cute, if you ask me.

We hope all of you friends of ours have a fantastic Friday!

Our Olympic Doodle of the Day:


Our Tip of the Day:
Since we've been giving a variety of food tips, today we figured we'd give a quick reminder on how to transition your cat to a new food, if needed. If a kitty is transitioned to a new food too quickly, a variety of gastrointestinal issues could possibly result, vomiting and diarrhea included. For this reason, it's generally recommended that you transition from the old food to the new food over a span of seven days.

To transition your cat to a new food, you can start by adding a small amount of the new food to the old food on the first day. Then, of course, you add more and more of the new food each day. On the final day of the transition, your kitty's food bowl will contain only the new food. Of course, when changing foods, keep in mind your particular kitty's overall status. If your kitty is a finicky eater, whether by nature or due to age or an ailment, you may have to do a slower transition over a longer period of time, in order for them to accept the new food. In other cases, such as if your kitty is having adverse reactions to their current food, a rapid or immediate transition might be necessary. This is of course something to discuss with your veterinarian. During any transition, of course keep an eye out for any adverse reactions.. Alert your veterinarian of any concerns you have, and stop or slow the food transition as needed or as instructed if issues arise.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Thoroughly Poetic Thankful Thimble Thursday

Hello and happy Thursday, friends! Can you guess what we have going on today? Well, if you guessed the Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge, then you guessed right!

Our pawsome hosts Angel Sammy and Teddy give us a photo prompt each week to help us get our creative juices flowing. For this week's poem, they shared this gorgeous photo:

If you weren't ready for summer yet, we're sure you are now, after seeing that warm scene. That being said, as much as this photo reminds us of a warm summer day, that's not really the direction this photo led me on this week's poetic endeavor.

I always try to offer at least a brief explanation as to how I got from the photo of the week to my rambling and often wild poem. So, let's see how short and brief I can make this. My poem below was indeed inspired by the photo above, but also by one of my favorite classic novels. That is, Gulliver's Travels. Has anyone else read that? I quite enjoyed it. But that's beside the point. In this novel, the main character (Gulliver, of course) at first finds himself shipwrecked and on an island known as Lilliput. Lilliput is the home of the Lilliputian, who happen to be incredibly tiny people. So, I tried to put a spin on that, and the silly and strange poem below is where that got me.

Also, I really am so sorry that my poems are always so long. I keep telling myself that I'm going to write them more concisely, and then long-winded rhymes like this one here show up on the page instead. My sincerest apologies for that. Anyway, here's this week's mile-long poem:

The Lillipurrsians

Sailing the seas was Captain Cal's passion.
He could not imagine living in any other fashion.
Cal wanted nothing more than to hop in his ship,
And embark on a wonderfully seafaring trip.

That is what Captain Cal did on that day,
When everything in his life truly did change.
He readied his ship and set the sails,
Wondering if it were wise to combat the day's gales.

Bold and brave, Cal did set out,
But before long his decision he did doubt.
Rain poured down from the skies,
Lightning flashed against Cal's eyes,
And thunder clashed in booming cries.

Cal was a skilled and seasoned ship captain,
But even he feared this tempest that was clapping.
 And his fear was indeed well-placed,
For before Cal knew it, his ship was becoming quite defaced.

Captain Cal clung to his ship.
Well, at least to a chunk that the storm had not ripped.
Fighting and struggling to stay afloat,
Captain Cal hoped he might receive help from another boat.
No such luck was to be had, though,
And after hours and hours poor Cal passed out cold.

When Cal awoke, the storm had passed.
Upon his face the sun felt like a blast.
He opened his eyes and blocked the light,
Quite afraid to see the sight.
Was he alive?
Did the storm he somehow survive?

Captain Cal felt land beneath him.
To where had he managed to swim?
Finally daring to take a peek,
Cal may or may not have let out a shriek.
A tiny little island is where Cal had landed,
And now he was most assuredly stranded.

There was blue sky overhead,
But that did not lessen Captain Cal's dread.
The sand beneath him was cozy and warm,
As if mocking his life now after that storm.

Taking a deep breath,
Captain Cal himself did try to collect.
Over there yonder were lots of palm trees,
And beside him there were—Oh my, what are these?
Hundreds of miniature critters did swarm him,
And Cal's situation seemed grimmer than grim.

What in the world were those things?
They were crawling all over him and—By golly, are those fangs?
They were no more than the size of Cal's thumb,
Yet the little things had managed to strike him quite dumb.

Suddenly, one of the minuscule things climbed up his chest,
And right in front of his face it did curl up and rest.
That's when Cal made a realization.
Where on earth is this strange destination?
Captain Cal recognized these strange little creatures.
The kind he knew back home, though, were of a far larger nature.

The little critters were running amok around Captain Cal,
Letting out all sorts of purrs, mews, and meows.
They were fuzzy and boasted rather long tails,
And on all four paws they each had sharp little nails.
Pointy little ears topped their tiny little heads,
Which they excitedly rubbed against Captain Cal's legs.

Yes, indeed, these are tiny little felines.
That was a fact Cal simply could not deny.
Then, one by one, the little cat creatures headed for the trees.
At first all Captain Cal could do was freeze.
Should he follow the little things to wherever they ran?
Was where they were going any place for a man?

With no other options staring him in the face,
Captain Cal followed the tiny kitties as if in a race.
When he caught up to the tiny little horde,
He found himself offered a fine little reward.
Dinner was served, or so it seemed,
And Captain Cal ate some tuna perfectly steamed.

After the meal, Captain Cal felt quite content.
His tiny little hosts even showed him to a tent.
Yet he did not quite sleep, no.
Not because the tent was not cozy, though.
Rather, his mini kitty hosts were really quite loud.
And their fun and games drew quite a crowd.

Captain Cal was certain the kitty count was now at least a thousand,
And all over the place they were running and bounding.
They scaled trees,
And chomped on cheese,
And jumped tall heights with great ease.

Then, before he knew it, Captain Cal was joining in!
He learned that though he lacked a tail, he could still spin!
Little sleep did Cal achieve that night,
But at least the storm had brought him some sort of delight.

And that is how Captain Cal spent countless days.
On the little island, he would bask in the sun's rays,
And oft join in on his tiny hosts' fun and games.
Sleepy little kitties were oft drawn to his skillfully built flames.
Then, one day, such a fire of Cal's drew attention from the sea,
For a ship showed up and its crew asked Cal, "Shall we rescue thee?"

Captain Cal pondered that question with a slight delay.
Then, finally, he offered the crew a nay.
He did not need rescued, no, not today.
So he told the ship's crew to be on their merry way.

Cal, you see, was quite happy just where he was.
With those tiny little critters covered in fuzz.
After all, he had found fine new friends in the mini kittens.
He really, truly was very quite smitten.


Now that we've made it through that lengthy poem, Thimble is here to show off her adorable little face on this Thursday.

For these shots, Thimble was again sitting near her favorite window. After a number of days with torrential rain and thunderstorms galore, we are finally having us a bit of sun. We are very thankful for this, and of course are entering this sunny day gratitude into Brian's Thankful Thursday Blog Hop.

We hope all of you wonderful friends of ours are having lots of sunshine in your days as well!

Our Tip of the Day:
We're going to do our best to produce tips related to National Cat Health Care Month until the end of February. So, today's (incredibly long) tip is another one related to feeding those kitties of yours. In some cases, you might have multiple cats with differing dietary needs. For example, you may have one cat who needs a low-protein kidney diet in a household that also contains other cats in need of higher levels of protein. Or, you might have one cat on a diet for weight loss in a household also with other cats who should not be on a restrictive diet. Or, perhaps you simply have one kitty who steals the other kitty's food. If any of these are the case in your house, there are some possible ways to succeed in feeding your kitties their separate diets.

First, if your cats are of different sizes or have different physical abilities, there is a chance you can take advantage of these traits to separate their feeding stations. For example, if you have a large cat and a kitten needing separate foods, you could cut a hole in an upside box in which the kitten can fit, but not the larger cat. This way, the kitten could be fed its kitten food in the box without the larger cat feasting on the food. You can also try feeding one cat its food on various elevated surfaces, if its housemate cat on a different diet is unable to reach those elevated feeding spots.

Of course, there are many cases in which the above options simply will not work. If this is the case, the primary option is to stick to scheduled feedings of some sort, and to physically separate the cats during these feeding times. First, determine times of the day when you are home and can oversee feeding time, such as morning, lunch, and evening. Then, at feeding time, each cat can be given their specific diet separately under your observation. This can be done in a number of ways. You can simply separate the cats in the same room, if you are able to closely observe them so that no kitty's food is stolen by another. You can also separate the kitty's in the same room while using something such as baby gates to ensure they remain separated while they eat. Another option is, of course, shutting cats in different rooms to each eat their meal on their own.

That all being said, if your cats are used to being free-fed all day and you find yourself needing to transition to scheduled feedings due to differing dietary needs, then do be patient and give this transition some time. A cat will have to get used to going from having access to food 24/7, to eating on a schedule. If need be, such as if your cats are not yet used to eating their meals at a scheduled time, then start this transition by feeding your cats more often, so that they will have more chances to eat their food throughout the day. Of course, if you have any questions or concerns with regard to feeding your kitties, do speak to your veterinarian!

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Wordless Wednesday

Our Olympic Doodle of the Day:


Our Tip of the Day:
After our tips on offering your kitty fresh water and food, we're now here today to remind you to keep those water and food bowls nice and clean. When it comes to keeping bowls clean, do your best to steer clear of using plastic bowls, as these can most easily harbor bacteria and other microbes, especially in scratches that might be the result of claws or other use and abuse. Rather than plastic, go for bowls that are stainless steel, or even ceramic or glass. Even so, though, it is still important to clean any and all bowls often. Saliva, oils or grease, and other debris from food can lead to a dirty environment in a bowl, so even if you have stainless steel, ceramic, or glass bowls, do clean them often. Unclean bowls can lead to issues such as feline acne, or, in worst case scenarios, gastrointestinal or other serious conditions caused by dirty, spoiled remnants in a food or water bowl. So, though we're certain you all already know this, do be sure to keep those food and water bowls spick and span!

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Birthday Bash!

Today is someone's birthday. Can you guess whose?

Oh, there's the coy little birthday girl herself!

That's right, today is pup Astrid's birthday! Well, it's more like her "maybe birthday", given that we don't know the exact day this rescue pup was born. But that's beside the point.

Today, we celebrate Astrid's 5th birthday. I try not to let myself get anxious over my furbabies aging, because even the golden years are a beautiful blessing. But, I must admit that 5 is a strange number to hear when thinking of Astrid. She still acts like a puppy.

That all being said, today Astrid will of course be getting lots and lots of extra snuggles, hugs, kisses, and of course cookies!

Fear not, as I don't, in fact, feed my pup chocolate chip cookies (not that she would complain if I did). Our local pet store sells cookies made just for pups, and Astrid absolutely loves them. So, of course she'll be getting some cookies! Don't give away the surprise, but the birthday girl also has a new chew bone and a taste of ice cream coming her way.

Astrid, all of your humans love you and wish you a happy birthday! And, of course, so do the kitties, who all love you just as much!

All of you friends of ours are welcome to join us in partying and feasting on cookies! Anyone and everyone is welcome!

Our Tip of the Day:
Yesterday, as part of our National Cat Health Care Month series of tips, we mentioned the importance of providing your kitty with fresh, easily accessible water at all times. Similar to this, today we're here to remind you of the importance of ensuring that your kitty is fed fresh food on a regular basis. To begin, as you all certainly know, moist food can spoil if left out for too long. It won't go rancid right away, but if left out for long periods of time, there is a concern for spoilage and resultant gastrointestinal issues if eaten. For this reason, refrigerate any unused portions of moist food (which can be reheated for a short amount of time in the microwave), and do not leave moist food out in your kitty's bowls for too long. While far less likely, it is not impossible for dry food to spoil, not to mention the possibility of ants helping themselves to food that is sitting out. So, try to ensure that uneaten old food is not left at the bottom of a bowl for too long. Also try to make sure that your kitty's dry food is stored in some form of an air-tight container, or at least that the bag is securely sealed.

Continuing on with the importance of fresh food, many cats are indeed picky eaters, which means it is quite possible that some kitties may not eat food that has been sitting out for a certain amount of time. In addition to this, as some cats age, their senses, including smell, start to diminish. Similarly, cats with certain ailments might need food with a fresh, strong odor in order to feel tempted to eat. This is another reason to offer food that is fresh and therefore enticing, so that the kitty will indeed have a desire to eat it.

All of this being said, also keep in mind your individual cat's weight, diet, and overall health. It is of course important to ensure that your kitty has sufficient access to food. Food allowance or scheduling will be different for an underweight cat versus an overweight cat, so all such considerations have to be made. If you have any concerns regarding your cat's food situation, of course discuss this with a veterinarian!

Monday, February 19, 2018

Of Mancats and Motivation

As the title of this post suggests, we have two goodies to share with you all today. First up, we of course have some mancats for you to ogle.

Our mancat Evan sure does love his front door. After all, from that door he can watch over his domain.

Evan isn't the only mancat who enjoys gazing out at the world. Our housemate Toby does, too!

Though we do enjoy the beauty of winter, some days we truly are ready for spring to come and stay. The kitties are especially ready, because they don't appreciate their few and far between window and door sessions.

Have any of our friends been enjoying some lovely weather these days? Any window whiffies going on yet? We sure hope so!


Now it's time for the inspiring Sparks blog hop, hosted by Annie of McGuffy's Reader.

Annie created this blog hop as a means for us to share positive thoughts in this often negative world. I'm all about spreading any bit of postivity that I can, so I am so happy that Annie hosts this hop each week.

For this week, I found myself eager to meld another Olympic-inspired doodle with a positive thought. I did my best, and ended up with this:

When you think of it, we all start at the bottom. But, that doesn't mean greatness is not possible. Go for it!

Wishing you all a magnificent, marvelous Monday!

Our Tip of the Day:
Our cat health tip for toady is plain and simple. We're here to remind you to make sure that your cat has easy access to fresh water at all times. Water intake is of course crucial to a kitty's health, as it is important for proper functioning of not only organs such as the kidneys, but all systems of the body. So, make sure that your cat has water readily available. Some considerations to make include ensuring that your kitty has water accessible in areas where they are comfortable drinking, such as somewhere that is not too heavy with foot traffic, yet also somewhere that they frequent often. You can of course also offer water bowls in multiple areas of the house, something that is especially important in multi-cat households.

Also make sure that your kitty's water is in a bowl or other drinking vessel that they like. Some cats prefer typical bowls, some cats only want bowls with especially low sides, and some cats might even show a preference for drinking water out of cups or another container with high sides. Also, of course, freshen up that water as often as possible or as needed. Cats can be picky creatures, and some cats might refuse to drink water that is not fresh. In addition, fresh water is also simply healthier overall. To help ensure that water remains as fresh as possible, you could use a water fountain for your kitty. All in all, especially given how important it is for all bodily functions, make sure to give special attention to your kitty's water bowl.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Sporty Sunday Selfies

Yesterday we hinted that you'd get to meet a hockey player here on our blog today. And we meant it.

That's right, our very own Thimble is a hockey player!

Though Thimble takes her sport very seriously, the humans here have a bit of a joke surrounding Thimble's athleticism. Ever since she was a kitten, Thimble has been known to whack and slap around anything and everything she can find. If she finds it on the table or a counter, it must get smacked to the floor. If it's on the floor, it must start moving with the aid of her paw. This became such a commonplace thing to witness, that my mom and I started referring to Thimble as a hockey player.

Then, guess what? My mom (Thimble's beloved Gammy, that is) found a hockey puck at a garage sale. Naturally, she bought it for Thimble, who was thrilled. Now she could practice her sport for real!

Oh, and can you see Thimble's audience? Do you see him? Standing on the other side of the door? That's the neighbor's cat. He comes over to visit a lot. He knows we have treats galore over here at our house. Also, he and Thimble enjoy a bit of shameless flirting. This time he watched her practice her hockey skills.

We hope you enjoyed meeting this pro hockey side of Thimble!

Of course, these shots Thimble snapped are our entry into the Sunday Selfies blog hop, hosted by none other than the Kitties Blue of The Cat on My Head.

Happy Sunday, friends!

P.S. We do apologize for the blurry nature of these photos. Thimble simply can't be expected to take quality shots when she's honing in her hockey skills.

Our Doodle of the Day:

Our Olympic-inspired doodle for today yet again takes us to the ice.

Our Tip of the Day:
Today's National Cat Health Care Month tip is all about those litter boxes. Especially if you have multiple cats, make sure that you have enough litter boxes with regard to the number of kitties in the home. It is often recommended that you have as many litter as you have cats, plus one. If there are not enough litter boxes, it is possible that cats might quickly find the litter boxes too filled or dirty, or that there might even be some bullying or battles over use of litter boxes. This could lead some cats to have to hold onto their urine or stool, which in turn could lead to issues such as UTIs or constipation. Or, some cats might simply begin looking for other areas in the house to urinate or defecate outside of the box.
Other litter box issues that might lead to health concerns or unwanted behaviors include litter boxes that are not cleaned enough, litter boxes that are in an area that is too high traffic for some cats' preference, litter boxes that are hidden too far away for certain cats' liking, or litter boxes that contain a type of litter that certain cats simply do not prefer. Obviously, issues such as holding urine or stool, resulting UTIs and constipation, and out-of-box urination and defecation are not ideal. For these reasons, do be sure that the litter box situation is suitable for all cats in the house, so that all the kitties involved can stay as happy and healthy as possible.