Thursday, February 28, 2019

Thoroughly Poetic Thankful Thimble Thursday

In case you hadn't noticed, it's Thursday! That means we'll be kicking this post off with a bit of a rhyme. After all, it's the day of Angel Sammy and Teddy's Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge.

Each week, our hosts share a photo prompt to help guide us on our poetic endeavors. This week's image is this fun one here:

I always find myself trying to give an explanation for my weird and wacky poems. When it comes to this week's poem, I don't know that I have a whole lot to say. I knew I wanted to write about bingo, and I knew that I enjoy trying to involve cats in my poems, and so I just went from there.


Berta was a bingo fiend.
She could play a game meaner than mean.
She also had a trick or two up her sleeve,
So that, for her, winning was a breeze.

Bingo night rolled around every Monday.
On those days, Berta never felt old or grey.
She counted down the minutes until game time,
When she would surely win more than a measly dime.

When the clock struck half past four,
Berta headed straight for the door.
First, though, she stopped and did plea,
"Here, kitty kitty! Come, kitty kitty!"

After a good and long wait,
A cat appeared, walking in a slow and steady gait.
It was big, orange, and purring.
It climbed into Berta's purse, where it began snoring.

"To bingo night we go!" Berta did declare.
Arriving early, as always, Berta seated herself in a front row chair.
Her bingo card was prepped and ready to go,
Ready to be filled with bingo after bingo.
Her lucky dauber sat well within reach.
Out of it and onto her bingo card, lucky ink would leach.

Right on time, the battle of the bingo cards began.
Numbers were called under B, and then O, and then N.
Slowly but surely, Berta had nearly reached a four corners.
Then, though, "Bingo!" was called out by someone who was not her.

At the sound of that single yet enthusiastic word of victory,
Berta's big orange tabby strutted to the winner one table away.
At first the winning woman oohed and awwed over her new feline friend,
But then, out of her mouth, a gasp was loudly rent.

Berta's orange cat had been savoring the attention and had rolled on his back,
Leaving the winner's glass of water spilled, just like that.
All over her bingo card, the water did run.
Ink spread, so that there was no verifying she had won.

When the game continued, a winner yet to be called,
Berta's big cat shook his fur and licked a paw.
Then he returned to his nap,
Nestling back onto Berta's lap.

Berta happily won that game with her four corners,
And then she won four more in a wonderful blur.
When another player excitedly shouted, "Bingo!",
Right on over to them Berta's big orange tabby cat did stroll.

He spilled two more glasses of water on bingo cards,
And his claws even turned one card into nothing but shards.
One of them he simply would not stop napping upon,
Answering any and all protests with a fanged yawn.

Finally, the woman Berta knew as Betty did cry,
"You're cheating, Berta, and being far too sly!"
"I most certainly am not!" was Berta's reply.
"What would compel you to utter such a lie?"

Another woman then did shout something absurd,
Saying, "You've made bingo your cat's attack word!"
"Ha!" Berta did laugh and laugh and laugh.
"A cat jumping into your lap is now an attack?"

Happy with her night's winnings,
Berta stood from the table, grinning.
She stretched, picked up her cat, and said,
"Come now, Bingo, it's well past time for bed."

Berta added to the ladies still playing the game,
"My boy Bingo here simply enjoys the sound of his name.
He can't help that he always comes when he's called.
It's really not the least bit his fault that, upon you, luck does not fall.
Now I big you good night, and good luck to you all!"


Guess what time it is? It's Thimble time, and Thankful Thursday time!

Thimble is thankful for mirrors, and for her adorable little face. I myself am also grateful for her adorable face. It gets her whatever she wants, in case you were wondering.

Of course, as always, we are also more thankful than we can express for the friends we have met in this amazing community.


And now we have for your the fill-in statements for tomorrow's Friendly Fill-Ins challenge. Ellen of 15andmeowing is the mastermind behind the first two, and I came up with the second two.

1. My favorite kind of music is _________.

2. I don't believe _________.

3. My ideal day _________.

4. Don't let _________ stop you from _________.

We'll see you tomorrow, friends!

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.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Chewtastic Chewy (#ChewyInfluencer)

Yesterday, the kitties offered some mixed reviews on a new food they tested out as part of the Blogger Outreach Program. Today, Astrid gets to share her thoughts on a new goody. I'll start by being completely honest and admitting that I knew right off the bat Astrid was going to love her review item. Why?

Because it's a NylaboneⓇ dinosaur chew bone!

One of Astrid's favorite pastimes is chewing on bones, and NylaboneⓇ is the brand we know works for her and her chewing style. Many of their bones, like this dinosaur one, are made for powerful chewers. Thus far, not-so-little Astrid has never destroyed a bone, or any of her teeth, when chewing on a NylaboneⓇ.

What's more, Astrid got to test this bone out on her birthday, which was last Wednesday. She dug right in and enjoyed it thoroughly. In other words, this NylaboneⓇ dinosaur chew bone gets four paws up!

(Disclaimer: As members of the Blogger Outreach Program, we received the Nylabone dinosaur chew bone for dogs in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own. We only review products that we believe will be of interest to our readers, and we never recommend a product that we do not believe in.)

Have a wonderful Wednesday, friends!

Our Doodle of the Day:

Our Tip of the Day:

Yesterday, we gave a lengthy tip on administering oral medications to your kitty. Today, we're here 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.

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!

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Tasty Tuesday (#ChewyInfluencer)

Food is a wonderful thing. Trying out new foods is an equally wonderful thing. That's why we are always grateful for our opportunities to test out new goodies thanks to the Blogger Outreach Program. In fact, testing out new goodies from is exactly what the kitties are doing today!

As evidenced above, the kitties around here taste tested Tiny Tiger™ canned cat food. This pack comes in chicken, turkey, and beef varieties. Though the kitties I know generally prefer canned food of the paté variety, we decided to go right on ahead and try out these chunks in gravy.

Truth be told, I mainly chose this food for Tonks to try out. When Tonks was a much younger kitten, she would eat anything and everything in sight. Flash forward a few months, and she is perfectly finicky, like the rest of the crew at our house. More so, I think Tonks might actually be more picky than all the others kitties I know. I didn't know that was possible. Tonks will not eat any dry food, save for one type of treats. That leaves canned food only, of which she is, of course, exceedingly choosy.

So, did picky Tonks like this Tiny Tiger™ food?

She sure did! I couldn't even finish photographing the food without Tonks locating it and helping herself to a bowl. And, yes, she is eating on the counter.

Guess who else likes the Tiny Tiger™ canned food?

Toby! Indeed, Toby had himself an entire bowl of Tiny Tiger™ goodness.

Did anyone else like it? Let's just say no. If you're looking for proof of this, here's an award-winning photo of Evan scooting promptly away from his bowl.

While only two kitties out of six around here enjoyed this food, since one of those kitties is the insanely-difficult-to-feed Tonks, I'll take it.

(Disclaimer: As members of the Blogger Outreach Program, we received the Tiny Tiger™ variety pack of chunks in gravy canned cat food in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own. We only review products that we believe will be of interest to our readers, and we never recommend a product that we do not believe in.)

Wishing you all a Tuesday filled with tasty goodness!

Our Doodle of the Day:

I often don't have enough variety in my kitty characters, do I? To help remedy that, here's a Siamese bookworm for 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.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Mancat Monday

Mondays are tiring. That's probably why Evan couldn't manage to keep his eyes open for his glamour shot.

Are you friends of ours tired today? Or, are you wide awake and ready to go? Evan is happily napping away his Monday morning, and he hopes all of you friends of ours have a nap-filled Monday as well!

Our Doodle of the Day:

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.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Sunday Selfies

Our housemate Toby knows he's one handsome stud, and sometimes he jumps at the opportunity to snap some selfies to provide a reminder of this. In fact, he did just that for today. He even took special care and consideration to make sure he yet again showed off how stunning his whiskers are.

Have a spectacular Sunday, friends!

Our Doodle of the 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.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Caturday Reads

Getting tired of bookish kitty doodles yet? We sure hope not. After all, we'll be sharing yet more of them over the next few days.

Today's bizarre bookish doodle is of course our contribution to Athena's Caturday Art Blog Hop. Be sure to visit Athena to see the masterpieces our friends have created!

Happy Caturday to all!

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 or so.

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 cat 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 more 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.

Friday, February 22, 2019

Friendly Fill-Ins and Photo Fails

Are you excited that it's Friday? We sure are! We'll kick off this magnificent day with the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge. In case you missed the fill-in statements yesterday, I'll share them again here. Ellen of 15andmeowing came up with the first two, and I came up with the second two.

1. I believe _________.

2. I need to go Marie Kondo* on my _________.

3. It does no good to _________.

4. I find _________ to be a walk in the park.

(*If you are unfamiliar with Marie Kondo, she is essentially a professional at decluttering.)

If you're curious how I would answer these, here you go!

1. I believe that everything happens for a reason.
(We may not always know or understand the reason for something, but I believe that reason is always there. One of my teachers in school had more than one discussion with us on this topic, and she had some very poignant comments on it that really stuck with me.) 

2. I need to go Marie Kondo on my kitchen.
(I love to cook and bake, but I have somehow accumulated an insane amount of kitchen gadgets that I don't even use, and my kitchen cabinets are an actual nightmare as a result. Part of the problem is that the previous owner of my house, who was actually a family friend, left the kitchen completely furnished when he left, and that included the cabinets. He left behind some pretty handy gadgets, but also some that I can't even identify. For some reason, even though I cleaned all the cabinets and their contents upon moving into my house, I put all of the ones he left behind right back where I found them, even the ones that are alien to me.)

3. It does no good to dwell on dreams and forget to live.
(This is actually almost an exact quote from the Harry Potter books, and it never left my brain after I read it for the first time many years ago. I myself indeed have a great many hopes, dreams, and aspirations, all of which I am working on achieving. At the same time, though, I often have to remind myself that I still need to live in and enjoy the present, before it becomes the past.)

4. I find waking up before dawn to be a walk in the park.
(This never used to be the case. At all. As a kid, especially during the summer months when I was out of school, I would be up well into the wee hours of the morning, and then I'd sleep in. When I hit adulthood, though, something in me did a full reversal.  I became that person who falls asleep right after dinner, and then wakes up to see the sunrise. I never thought I'd be this person, but I actually love being up and about before the rest of the world.)

Now it's your turn!
To add your link to the Friendly Fill-Ins Linky list, just click HERE!
You can also click on the badge below to add your link.

You are also welcome to complete the fill-ins in the comments below,
or in the comments on Ellen's blog, 15andmeowing.

Can you guess what we have for you next?

That's right, we have some bloopers for the Pet Photo Fails! Blog Hop, hosted by Mudpie and Melissa of Melissa's Mochas, Mysteries, & Meows. Of course, our bloopers are brought to you by our blooper queen, Eddy.

That shot there was a closeup, during which Eddy decided to turn her head away at the last second. That's not much of a blooper, though, since her whiskers are actually pretty darn in focus and on full display. But don't you worry, because Eddy has some real bloopers for you. How? Because let me tell you, when you have your camera on zoom, and your kitty moves, said kitty turns into some sort of elusive phantom cat whose true form is just a thing of myths and legends

That's more like it. That's my Eddy, in all of her blurry glory.

Happy Friday, friends!

Our Doodle of the Day:

Our Tip of the Day:

We're making these National Cat Health Care Month tips stretch 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!

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Thoroughly Poetic Thankful Thimble Thursday

Hello and happy Thursday, friends! If you visit us regularly, you'll probably know that we're just about to bust out in rhyme. After all, it is the day of Angel Sammy and Teddy's Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge.

Each week, our hosts share a photo prompt to guide us as we pen our poems. This week's prompt is this one here:

When I first saw this image, for whatever reason, it gave me a Three Stooges vibe. It just gave off that fun, slaptstick sort of feel to me. I might very well be alone in that thought, but it nevertheless is what spurred me to write the poem I did today. That being said, as seems to happen often, I sort of lost my original thought process as I scribbled up my poem, and it ended up with a mind and ending of its own.

The Tiger Lily

Larry was nothing if not a jester.
He was known to oft tease and pester.
Jokes and tricks were the name of his game,
Ranging from wild to, on occasion, a bit more tame.

Larry's wife could only ever sigh and shake her head,
Never knowing what kind of tomfoolery her husband might spread.
She certainly didn't know what to say,
When Larry declared he was going to be a gardener on one fine day.

"You've never gardened a day in your life."
That was the reply of Larry's baffled wife.
Larry shrugged and tipped his hat.
On his was face was a smile big and fat.
He told his wife, "Just you wait and see.
I have a trick or two up my sleeve."
Larry's wife could not help but roll her eyes.
She told him, "Just make sure nobody dies."

And so Larry skipped off to the shops,
Seeking whatever might make his garden grow and pop.
He grabbed shovels and seeds, and this and that.
He even grabbed himself a new gardening hat.

Arms overflowing with his new hobby's supplies,
Larry aimed to grow one heck of a surprise.
He was shooting for sunflowers 40 feet tall,
And ivy that would climb every nearby wall.

Larry was always one to go big or go home,
And he hoped every single seed he planted would grow.
He planted those sunflowers and of course that ivy,
As well as tiger lilies, though the seeds were really quite pricey.

Each and every day, Larry tended his garden.
He watered it, and then left mud on the carpet.
As his wife waved a finger and scolded him good,
Larry could only shrug where, muddied, he stood.

Perhaps his wife would be a little more forgiving,
Once his garden grew to be unforgettable and award-winning.
"One day," Larry told his wife, "my flowers will be the talk of the town.
My skyscraper sunflowers and ivy walls will surpass even the funniest clown."

Larry continued on with his ways.
Tending his garden, that's how he spent his days.
It was on one fine and sunny morn,
When Larry heard some sort of a groan.

He was pulling weeds away from his sunflowers,
When he heard those groans, moans, and growls.
"What on earth?" was all Larry could say,
As he looked around every which way.

As another grumble sounded,
Larry realized the noise was grounded.
As in, it was coming from the dirt just over there.
At first, Larry could only stare.

You might think Larry was imagining it all,
But then the growling dirt began to shift and fall.
Larry stood with eyes wide and mouth ajar,
Ensuring he stood back plenty far.

As something beneath the dirt continued to snarl and shift,
A wooden sign nearby began to sway and twist.
Suddenly, Larry remembered that the sign was a marker.
Then the truth of the matter began to unfold, in one heck of a blur.

Larry aimed to grow otherworldly sunflowers and ivy,
So much so that he had forgotten something else, so very unwisely.
The wooden sign that had now fallen over all willy-nilly,
It marked where Larry had planted the tiger lilies!

Larry made his way over to the fallen marker of a sign,
Albeit slowly, since the ground still growled in a manner far from benign.
Using the tip of his longest shovel,
Larry began to gently move aside the dirt that still did shuffle.

Suddenly, something orange could be seen in the dirt.
Is that a tiger lily petal? Larry wondered at first.
Surely not, since lilies did not grow underground.
They also, most certainly, did not make those sorts of sounds.

No, it was most certainly not a petal that had emerged.
It was an ear, and it was covered in orange fur!
Then there were two ears, two golden eyes, and whiskers.
Good grief, what had he bought from that seed-selling mister?
The seeds for the tiger lily had been far from cheap.
Was there a reason for that, of which the salesman did not speak?

The dirt in front of Larry was now in piles off to the side,
And in front of him stood none other than an orange cat with stripes.
Larry stuttered, "What? Where? When? How?"
The cat simply replied with, "Meow."

The orange, striped feline shook out its fur,
And then began to lick itself as it did, quite loudly, purr.
Well, Larry's wife always said she wanted a cat.
Apparently he grew her one, and that was that.


Now, as always, it's time for Thimble and her thankfuls.

Thimble found out that Evan recently showed off his whiskers. So, Thimble wanted to show off hers, and to express how thankful she is for them and all that they do for her.

We're not only thankful for whiskers today, though. We're also thankful that we've been seeing the sun, and having some not-so-freezing days. We're also, of course, thankful for all of you wonderful friends of ours.


Last but not least, we have for you the fill-ins statements for tomorrow's Friendly Fill-Ins challenge. Ellen of 15andmeowing crafted up the first two, and I came up with the second two.

1. I believe _________.

2. I need to go Marie Kondo* on my _________.

3. It does no good to _________.

4. I find _________ to be a walk in the park.

(*If you are unfamiliar with Marie Kondo, she is essentially a professional at decluttering.)

We'll see you tomorrow!

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 or the environment can lead to a dirty 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!

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Birthday Bash!

Happy birthday, Astrid!

Indeed, today is the day we celebrate our resident pup Astrid's birthday. Today, this girl is 6 years young.

Astrid will of course be feasting on her favorite treat today, that being cookies! We have plenty of cookies to go around, so feel free to join us in our celebration and grab yourself some cookies and milk. Astrid also loves her some ice cream, so she'll also most certainly be having herself a taste of that today, too. Yet again, we have plenty of ice cream to go around, so grab yourself some frozen goodness and feast away!

Astrid, your humans and your kitties all love you! Happy birthday, our puppy girl!

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 it becoming stale, or even 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!

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

In Memory of Wally

Today, our resident orange mancat Evan, and of course the rest of here as well, are remembering beloved orange mancat Wally of The Island Cats. Sweet and handsome Wally made his way to the Rainbow Bridge yesterday, following a battle with kidney disease. Wally was known and loved by many.

No photo description available.

We will never forget you, Wally. No one will ever forget you, Wally. May you rest in peace.

Please visit Wally's family at The Island Cats to offer your purrs, condolences, thoughts, and prayers.

Our Tip of the Day:

Today's tip in our cat health series 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 often 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.

Monday, February 18, 2019

A Whiskered Mancat Monday

Up until relatively recently, Evan had all white whiskers. You know, a little like these here:

As Evan aged, though, he started growing in some whiskers that were not, in fact, all white. See?

Do you see those partially black whiskers? Evan wants to know what that's about. As a fellow ages, isn't he supposed to grow more white? That's what Evan thought, at least until his whiskers started turning black.

What's the whisker situation for all of you? Are your whiskers white? Black? A little bit of both?

Wishing you a wonderful beginning of the week!

Our Doodle of the Day:

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.