Author Archives: Charles Huss

Cat and Mouse and Cat


Perhaps Chris should be nicknamed “The Spoiler” for his ability to spoil a good time, especially if it is Frankie having a good time. Check out the video below of Frankie having fun with a catnip mouse.

You may also remember a similar incident a few years ago.

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What Are We Going To Do About Puck?


Friday evening I got home from work just before my wife and I helped her bring some of her stuff in the house. I had her bag with her laptop and other stuff as well as her lunch bag. I set the laptop bag on our bed and as I was walking out of our bedroom I noticed water on the floor. The water looked clear so I thought I spilled her Yeti cup but it was empty. Of course, it could have been empty because I spilled it.

The water looked clear so I thought I spilled her Yeti cup but it was empty. Of course, it could have been empty because I spilled it. I wiped up the water and smelled it but didn’t smell anything so it remained a mystery.

Early the next morning, around 3:30 or so, Rose got up to use the bathroom and let Puck in the bedroom on her return trip. Puck is fine in the bedroom, unlike Chris. He usually just sleeps at my feet. This particular morning he was a bit restless, moving from my feet to my head and eventually lying down somewhere in the middle, on top of my arm. Suddenly my had felt very hot and, in my half-awake state, I thought there was something wrong with Puck, like he was running a fever or something.

Then it hit me and I was fully awake instantaneously. I announced very loudly, “Puck is peeing on the bed!’ and then got up so fast I scared him away.

Now we had to get up and pull the sheets off the bed and wash them and put new sheets on. I also found more pee on our laminate floor. I wiped it up and this time I could smell it was pee.

Friday I came home to more pee on the floor and I even found poop on the living room floor, though I don’t remember when I found that. Puck’s problem has always been pooping outside the box, which we have not been able to stop, except briefly, for a couple of years. I was always grateful that he didn’t pee on the floor and the poop was always on the tile floor next to the box (except when he pooped on the couch).

Saturday morning I found pee on the floor in the living room. It was next to a table with a glass to that holds a large lamp. It was quite the pain to take it apart so I could clean the bottom of it.

I left a message on the Vet’s answering machine Friday evening to ask for a Saturday appointment. I called them just before they opened that morning and she said I could have an 8 a.m. appointment if I could get there in seven minutes. We walked through their doors at 8:00 exactly. Puck was not happy to be there and wouldn’t come out of his carrier.

Cat Puck at Vet
The vet tech examined Puck in their secret back room lab and brought him back with the top off his carrier.

Puck was not happy to be there and wouldn't come out of his carrier.
I picked him up and let him lie on my lap for a while but he was nervous and go off my lap so he could hide behind me.

Puck was not happy to be there and wouldn't come out of his carrier.

The vet said they found some bacteria and crystals in his urine and gave him – you guessed it – steroids and antibiotics.

Some of you probably know that every time I bring a cat to the vet I make some kind of a joke about how I could be a vet if I only had steroids and antibiotics because all feline ailments are caused by a steroid and antibiotic deficiency. I joke about it but it is really kind of sad. We also got some Hills urinary canned for to try to help break up the crystals. Hopefully, that will help but nobody likes it much so perhaps not.

I cleaned one of the litter boxes later that day and put in fresh litter and put it in a different location. My thought was that he may be associating pain while peeing with the litter boxes and new litter and a new location might help. I also bought a refill for our Feliway plug in and plugged that in between the patio and living room.

It did help, at first. Puck peed in the box as soon as I poured the litter into it . . . then he peed on the floor two hours later.

I had a half-bottle of Dr. Elsey’s Cat Attract that I bought for Pucks pooping problem. It didn’t work for that but I put it in the boxes with hopes it would work for pee. It didn’t.

Now we are going to have to lock all our cats on the patio while we are at work. I hate to do that but if pee stays on our laminate floor all day it will ruin it. Also, maybe close proximity to the litter boxes will help.

Update: This morning, shortly after this post published, I woke up to find pee on the floor in the living room. I then found something worse. Despite the obstacles we keep in his way, Puck pooped and peed on our sofa. We keep a cover on it for the poop but the pee soaks through.

 

Photo Friday: I Told You There Was Room


Frankie is always in the bathroom when I take a shower. For some reason, he is fascinated by it but only as an observer, not as a participant.

The other day, after I got out of the shower, Frankie turned his attention to the linen closet. He got up on the toilet seat and opened the closet door for a peek inside. He looked up and down for a place to jump up onto but decided against it after seeing how full it was.

Chris had come into the bathroom as Frankie was pondering what to do. “Stand aside Frankie, I can fit in there,” Chris said, or at least implied, and proceeded to jump into the closet where he pushed stuff out of his way and forced his way inside enough so he could turn around. Even I was impressed.

Frankie just sat on the toilet seat and suddenly became a bystander in his own game.

My computer is having problems and is running very slow and freezing up so I posted this from my phone for only the second time ever. I don’t like doing that because I don’t have an app to reduce the resolution of my pictures so they will load quicker. Hopefully, nobody will have trouble viewing this post today.

Hanging Outside With Dad


Saturday is typically outside day for Chris and Frankie. I first take Frankie for a cat walk on his leash and harness and then I let Chris outside for some fresh air and grass.

Chris doesn’t require a harness because he generally stays close to home. I do watch him because he wanders off sometimes and I have to pick him up and bring him back. Mostly he just eats grass and relaxes.

I usually sit at our table outside and watch him. Sometimes he joins me at the table.

Sometimes I sit on the steps and he joins me there.

Other times he wanders to the back of the house and I have to uproot myself and follow him. I’ll sit on the blocks behind the shed and Chris will hang out with me there too.

I think we make a good team.

Update on Our Friendly Stray and Her Two Shy Kittens.


The stray cat and her kittens have become somewhat regulars at our house recently although their visits are still somewhat unpredictable. They seem to come between 6 p.m. and 7 a.m but some days I don’t see them and some days I do. When I do see them, sometimes it is just the mother. Other times there is one or both kittens with her.

I have learned that the mother is not feral and is actually quite friendly. The other day she even rolled upside down on top of my foot and let me rub her belly. It was very brief but It amazed me at how quickly she learned to trust me. She still hisses at me sometimes but that is usually when I come out with food. I think maybe she is not sure who I am at first.

I noticed one of the kittens has a darker face than the other. That one is shy but he does take risks while the lighter faced kitten stays in the shadows. The lighter faced kitten has a hint of tabby marking which makes her, or him, somewhat unique.

Below are a video and some pictures that I took Thursday morning. The kittens were here at 5:30 in the morning eating and then I noticed them an hour later playing on the other side of the house while the mom lied in the grass watching. Our cats watched too. They seemed just as comfortable at our neighbor’s house than at ours.


cat Floki Cat Puck Cat Floki

stray Siamese kitten

Notice the tabby stripes?

stray Siamese kitten

I wonder how the planter got knocked over.

stray Siamese kitten

I was late for work when this playing was going on which is wy the video is so brief but my wife says she was quite entertained watching them play for a while after I left.

This morning I was able to get another video that shows how friendly the mom is and I captured a funny moment when one of the kittens was torn between fear and hunger.

My wife talked to a person at the TNVR place and he said they only trap on the weekend and put us down for next weekend so cross your fingers that everything goes well. I just fear that we will catch one or two but not all three and that would leave that kitten alone and scared.

The Paper Forest


Floki’s favorite toy, by far, is a rolled up piece of paper. It is like an addictive drug to him and my wife is his dealer. When Rose records receipts in the checkbook, Floki is there waiting for the crumpled up paper when she is done. He will chase that paper all through the house and sometimes will bring it back to Rose and wait for her to throw it.

Often the paper just gets lost somewhere in the house. I had another post where I discovered our broom closet was a receptacle for lost wads of paper but I discovered an even bigger place where paper goes to die.

I saw Floki sticking his paw under our coffee table one day. There is only about an inch of space so I had to get a flashlight and put my head on the ground to see what he lost. I was shocked to see a whole forest of wadded up pieces of paper under there.

I got a stick and pulled out a few of the wads of paper. There was even a mouse in the mix. It was like Christmas all over again.Siamese cat and paper ball

Of course, I quietly disposed of some of the balls while he was busy and not paying attention.

Siamese cat and paper ballSiamese cat and paper ball

I love a cat who can appreciate a cheap toy. I am not looking forward to his teenage years.

 

Forgotten Photographs


Recently I came across a folder on my computer dated December 15, 2009. It was simply labeled “Camera Tests.” I’ve seen it before but I didn’t think it was anything important so I just ignored it until I came across it the other day.

It was a month after we adopted Chris and the camera my wife ordered for me for Christmas arrived. I don’t remember but I assume she allowed me to open it and make sure it worked before she put it under the tree. So naturally, I took pictures of cats.

I thought it would be interesting to share these pictures of Chris’s early housemates since so much has changed since then.

We’ll start with Chris on the bed with Abbey, He probably annoyed her and caused her to leave.

Here is Abbey during a moment of peace.

cat Abbey

Chris when he was still skinny.

Best buds, Alex and Tigger.

Another cute picture of Chris.

Our cat Princess did not come with us to Myrtle Beach but she did join us later. I don’t know if she was there when these pictures were taken but here is her picture.

Our other cat, Flash, was Tigger’s brother and a bit of a recluse. He was probably hiding somewhere when I took the other pictures.

So what do you think of Chris and his early siblings?

Our Unpredictable Ferals


After my last post about the feral cat and kittens that have been coming to our house, I didn’t see them for about a week. I kept food out for them and some days it would be gone when I checked on it and some days it would still be there. We were never sure if the cats were eating it or some other animal was coming around until Wednesday evening when the mother cat and her two Siamese looking kittens showed up.

I wasn’t expecting them to be there when I walked outside to do laundry. I was surprised to see two kittens take off in opposite directions. One hid under my car and the other crawled under the home behind us and one over. That made me wonder if they were living there.

The mother stayed close and hissed and growled at me. Actually, it wasn’t really a growl. It was more of a low pitch sound that I sometimes hear from our cats when a strange cat comes around.

I decided to skip laundry for a while and went back inside. Soon, one kitten was back and I took these pictures through the window screen.

stray kitten

stray cat
I then put a small can of wet food on a plate and brought it outside. The kitten ran away but the mom let me stay out there and take pictures while she ate. She does not seem afraid of me which makes me think she is not feral like her kittens. Even so, she is not overly friendly either.

stray cat

stray cat

I wanted her kittens to come back so I went in the house and waited. Sure enough, one of the kittens showed up.

stray cat and kitten

I took this video which is a bit long but at 4:16 it skips ahead to a new can of food and a kitten eating it. I am unsure if it is the same kitten or if the timider of the two came back for a meal. Perhaps your eyes are better than mine. Also, my wife thinks the kitten’s belly shows signs that he or she has worms. I don’t know. Also, at 2:53, Frankie scares the kitten away by pulling himself up to the open window.

I called the TNVR place on Thursday morning but I am still waiting to hear back from them. In the meantime, I have not seen the cats since Wednesday and I have only seen the food in the bowl get eaten twice since then, including some time last night. Maybe they are being fed somewhere else or maybe some days they feast on rabbit, which is plentiful around here.

Photo Friday: The China Syndicate


Our china cabinet started out as Chris’s domain. He was the only one able and willing to leap to the top from the sofa. Since he has gained weight, he no longer jumps up there. Puck has taken over as chief overseer of the china cabinet.

Puck can’t jump up there without help. He waits for me to walk by and gives me “the look” and a whisper of a meow and I know exactly what he wants. I lean over and he jumps on my shoulders and I walk over to the cabinet where he jumps up.

Frankie is the only cat that can get on top of the cabinet without help. Sometimes he gets up there but mostly he doesn’t care about it too much.

Floki is like Puck and he uses me to get up there. I try to avoid letting him up on the cabinet when Puck is there because I know Puck is up there for peace. Usually, though, Puck being up there gets Floki interested in being up there.

The other day Frankie was riding my shoulders and decided to get off on the China cabinet. Puck saw him and then he wanted to get up there. That got Floki interested and I figured, why not? I helped Floki up and everyone seemed to get along.

cats on cabinet

I think they were having a meeting, possibly planning to oust Chris as the alpha. I don’t know where Chris was, probably napping somewhere. Whatever plan they came up with didn’t work. Chris is still the boss.