Frankie Gave Us a Scare


I opened the door yesterday afternoon thinking Frankie was in another room but I was wrong and he slipped past me and out the door. It was about 3:15 p.m. I tried to catch him but he ran under the neighbor’s car so I left him there and returned home. I figured he would come back. I had recently bought butternut squash seeds and those little cardboard pots called seed starters so while I was waiting I busied myself filling those pots and planting the seeds.

Frankie didn’t come back and after a while, I started getting worried about him so I walked around looking for him but saw no sign of him. After about a half-hour he came back to taunt me and then disappeared again.

I stayed outside for a while waiting for him to come back but he did not. Normally he comes back and lets me catch him within the first hour so I was starting to become concerned. I walked around looking for him and then got in my car and drove around the neighborhood but saw no sign of him. I let some time pass and then I drove around the neighborhood again, still with no luck. By this time we had dinner in the oven and Rose and I were both very concerned. I had an upset stomach from worry.

At around 6 p.m. Rose shut the oven off and we drove around the neighborhood together. We drove for probably about a half an hour or so. Several times we drove past our home hoping we would see him there waiting but we didn’t.

 I had fed the cats earlier and there was still some wet food left when we got back. I scooped one of the plates into the trash but Rose suggested putting the other one outside, which I did. About ten minutes later I looked out the window and saw Frankie on top of Rose’s car. It was 6:45, three and a half hours after he got out. I was very relieved and went out to get him. When I did I noticed the food had been eaten. 

I have wanted to get Frankie microchipped for a long time but put it off until he was at the vet for another reason. Unfortunately, he had not been at the vet for another reason for a long time so it never happened. Now I think it’s time to get him micro-chipped but I’m not sure if vets are doing non-emergency procedures. I noticed the SPCA stopped fixing the animals in their care so the gloves and masks could be saved for emergencies.

Photo Friday: Yoda and Jerry


Shortly after moving to South Carolina in 2009, I started volunteering at a shelter called Sav-R-Cats. It is the shelter where we adopted Chris from but before that, I took photos of cats for their Petfinder page. At the time the shelter had several community rooms and a few large cages. When the volunteers came in, those rooms were mostly emptied and all the cats were allowed to socialize in the main part of the shelter. Some cats stayed outside of the cages, even at night. Two of those cats were best friends Yoda and Jerry, who arrived at the shelter in 2006.

Yoda and Jerry, October 3, 2009

I saw on their Facebook page that Jerry passed away a couple of weeks ago having never been adopted. I believe Yoda is still alive and still at the shelter but I don’t know for sure. I asked about Yoda but have not yet got a response.

I’m not sure why those two were never adopted. Some cats are just not adoptable and end up living out there lives at a no-kill shelter. I don’t know if that was the case with these two. It is possible they could not be separated and needed to go together which can make adoption more difficult. Perhaps, after a while, they just became resident cats, which really isn’t such a bad life considering they had the run of the shelter.

If Yoda is still alive, I am concerned what he will do without Jerry. Perhaps it is time for a loving home.

More Cats in Litter Boxes


A couple of months ago I wrote about the many cats I saw who tended to spend their time lying in litter boxes at the SPCA shelter where I volunteer (see here). I suggested, and people agreed, that this is a behavior caused by stress. Since then I have accumulated several more photos of cats in litter boxes. Many, if not all, of the cats shown here have been adopted so enjoy the photos but don’t worry about the kitties.

Being in a shelter is no fun for anybody but usually, the end justifies the means. I’ve noticed the turnover is relatively quick and a cat that spends three months in our shelter is pretty rare. Now that the shelter is by appointment only that might change but my hope is people won’t forget about these pets in need even though they have other things to worry about right now. What do you think?

Shelter Pets Still Need Homes


As many of you know, I volunteer for the SPCA here in Largo, Florida. I work as a cat counselor every Thursday from 4-7. Usually there are three of us counselors but a week ago two of my fellow volunteers did not show up. When I went in this Thursday I was expecting the shelter to be closed to the public but I was pleasantly surprised that it was open and pets were being adopted, although they have adopted an appointment only policy that started Friday.

I was again alone this Thursday, and I hope the two ladies I work with are well, but it does make my work seem even more important now. During the three hours I was there I saw three cats go home with their new families. It is a good feeling.

My wife and I have been throwing around the idea of adopting a female cat. Unfortunately, we are only allowed one pet where we live and are already over our limit so it probably won’t happen but I still think about it while I am there. This last month there have been a string of female black cats that have been extremely friendly and affectionate. Three of these cats have been in isolation because they supposedly do not get along with other cats. We considered adopting one of them, Jezebel, which I wrote about here. When my wife came in to check her out she proved herself to be intolerant of others.

While I was there Thursday, I kept an eye out for the most friendly female cat at the shelter. This, of course, is impossible to determine on one visit because cats might act differently depending on how tired they are or for other reasons. However, I do think a six year old cat named Kiki would get my vote. Coincidentally, she is another female black cat and I noticed how friendly she was the previous week too.

I think the friendliest male cat at the shelter would be a one year old named Kitty, who is a very special cat with a not so special name. He is in isolation because he is on a special diet but I think that is temporary. When I opened his cage he was all over me. He would push his head into my chin and then put his paws on my shoulder and snuggle with me. As an outgoing and rather well built male, I think he would cause jealousy among our other two wannabe alpha males.

Please excuse the poor quality of this photo of Kitty

On the way out after my shift I noticed a beautiful cat that was just outside the door. He meowed at me and I couldn’t help but wonder if he was one of our cats that escaped. I took a photo of him and went back inside to ask someone.

It turns out his name is Chunks, or something like that, and he is a stray that they take care of. It seems strange that a stray cat would be a permanent resident outside a shelter but if he is feral and unadoptable, that is probably the best place to live. When I came back out I bent down and reached out my hand, hoping he would come to me, but no such luck. I think he his trusting but to a point.

How are things where you live? Do you know if shelters are still open?

Our Bathroom Attendant


Remembering Puck on this Throwback Thursday.

Bad Cat Chris

About a week ago, we noticed that Puck was spending a lot of time in the bathroom. No, he does not have a medical condition. He would just hang out in there. Sometimes I would see him sleeping in the bathroom and other times he would be staring up toward the ceiling.

20140820_210641_Puck

Rose and I wondered if there was a bug that the other cats failed to notice. Perhaps there was the sound of a rat in the ceiling. We didn’t know but we found out the other day. The call came from Rose while I was in the kitchen. Chuck! Come Quickly! Oh my God! Hurry!

I thought she hurt herself or one of the cats was in distress. I hurried to the bathroom to see Rose pointing at the wall. Just above a large picture on the wall was what looked like a
Mediterranean Gecko. It is not…

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Frankie Can't Self Quarantine


Frankie goes stir-crazy if he is stuck in the house too long. It was probably over a week since I took him for a walk and maybe almost that long since he last escaped so he was driving me crazy with his crying and scratching at the door. I couldn’t take it anymore so, even though I was busy, I got his harness and we went outside.

Okay, I am out. Now what?
Cat Frankie smelling plant
Oh, I know. There are plants to smell.
This one smells great.
Now it’s time for a rest but this cat bed is uncomfortable.
Ahh, this is much better.

I hope everyone reading this is doing well and I hope if you are stuck at home you are not going stir-crazy like Frankie.

To Catch a Cat


Frankie escaped yesterday again which has become highly annoying, especially since I just took him for a walk the day before. It happened as I was leaving to go to the store so I couldn’t leave until I got him back in the house.

The first thing he did when I tried to catch him was run across the street and under a vehicle that was parked there. I tried, unsuccessfully, to coax him out, or at least get him close enough to pull him out, but he is too smart for that.

cat

After a while he became distracted with a lizard, which he caught and headed for home with it. I thought he wanted to bring it in the house but he went under my car with it instead.

cat Frankie under car with lizard

Cats like to play with their prey so he let it go and recaptured it a couple of times before the lizard came out from under the car enough for me to catch it. I then moved it back a foot or two and let it go. I was hoping Frankie would come out to get it but both stayed motionless. That is when I gave the lizard a little push to get him moving which also got Frankie moving. He ran out from under the car into my waiting arms.

Now that, my friends, is how you catch a cat.