Fifth Blogiversary


Today marks five years since I started writing this blog. Time sure does fly when you are having fun. When I started I read that most blogs don’t last a year so I guess I am doing good.

When I look back, some things amaze me, like the fact that I wrote 693 blog posts. I know some of you are far ahead of me but for me, that’s an accomplishment.

I also have over 1700 pictures in my media library. Virtually all of them have been posted on this blog. You can almost say this is a photo blog with some words in it.

My most viewed post ever is “Are Ginger Cats Friendlier,” which doesn’t definitively answer the question but does show how many people are asking it. I will have to do me research on the subject.

My personal favorite post, it think, is “The Great Escape.”  It was one of my first posts and it really showed a bit of Chris’s personality during those early days.

My favorite picture is a tough choice.

Maybe it’s Tigger washing young Chris.

ginger cats, Chris and Tigger

Maybe it’s Daredevil Chris

Bad Cat Chris on railing

Maybe it’s Chris sleeping on Tigger.

Maybe it’s baby Chris.

Maybe it’s not Chris at all, Maybe it’s Frankie . . .

Our cat Frankie under the dressor

. . . or Floki . . .


. . .  or Puck.

Do you have a favorite?

What I really enjoy about blogging is the wonderful people that I have met, or at least virtually met. There are over 10,000 comments on my blog and then there are everybody else’s blogs too. It’s hard not to feel like I am surrounded by friends. Hopefully, before another five years passes, I will be able to meet some of you in person.

Until that time, Happy Blogging.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Photo Friday: Puck’s Profile


Puck is a handsome cat but he is also difficult to photograph. As a result, he is a bit unrepresented on my Photo Friday posts. When I do manage to capture a good image of him, I feel like sharing.

black cat profile

On another note, the stray and her kittens that I wrote about in my last two posts may, or may not, be gone. I saw them last Sunday evening but since then the food I left out went uneaten until I noticed the bowl was empty yesterday morning, just when I was about to give up. I put more food in the bowl that morning and when I returned from work, the bowl was half eaten. Who, or what, ate it I don’t know.

My wife finally got a call from Meow Now who said they don’t catch kittens before the are old enough to be fixed, about eight weeks or so, because they are a TNVR organization and have no place to hold them. Rose said they were about three to five weeks. I think they might be older but I have little experience with young kittens Can someone help give me a better estimate. Please look at the picture on this blog post and tell me what you think.

Ferals at Our Door Update


On my last post, I talked about the Feral or Stray mother and her two kittens who started coming around our house. I mentioned that they did not come around all day Sunday and I was worried about them. I’m happy to report now that they were back Sunday evening.

Rose saw her with her two kittens but by the time I got my camera out and opened the window, the kittens ran away under my car.

Feral cat

The mom quickly ate the dry cat food that was out there so I prepared a plate with some raw meat cat food. I spread out three teaspoons of meat around the perimeter of the plate so the kittens could eat. I also added more dry food. When I brought the plate out the mom cat hissed and growled at me but she eagerly started eating. I was able to pet her one time but dared not risk a bite from an unknown stray.

She let me sit there and photograph her while she scarfed up all the wet food meant for the kittens.
Feral cat

I went back inside while she fished eating. She seemed very hungry. After a while, one kitten came out but I could not photograph him because it was too dark by then.

That is the last time I saw the cats. They did not come here yesterday and I have not yet seen them this morning. I expect to talk to someone from a TNVR organization today about trapping them if they have not already been trapped. We will see.

Ferals at Our Door


About a month ago I saw a small tabby cat as I drove around the corner and onto my street. I thought she might be a stray or feral because she was somewhat skinny and had no collar. I didn’t see her again until last Tuesday or Wednesday evening.

After I arrived home from work and fed the cats, I walked out the door to put some laundry in the washer and a startled cat ran from my steps to the end of my driveway and turned to look at me. I said a few soothings words and she stayed for a few seconds but then disappeared around the corner. After I finished with the clothes I walked out of the shed and saw the cat was at my back stairs again. I again scared her and she ran away.

I put a handful of dry cat food on a plate and put it outside in case she came back. When I talked to my wife that night, who was away on business, I told her about the stray cat. “Don’t feed him,” she said. “He will spray the outside of our house.”

“I won’t,” I said without hesitation. I didn’t need to, I thought. The food was already out there. The next morning it was gone.

Yesterday morning I put our trash outside the back door. Normally I take it to the trash can but since we were planning on leaving soon I thought letting it sit out there for twenty minutes was better than fighting with the cats to get out and then back in again. Not long after that Frankie was going nuts about something he was seeing out the window. Rose looked out and saw a mother cat and two kittens outside our back door. She called to me to come and take a look.

I looked out the window and saw the same tabby cat I saw before with what looked like two Siamese kittens. “That’s strange,” I said. “It looks like she has Siamese kittens.”

“You need to put some food out for them,” Rose said. “Those kittens are probably hungry.” With that, I put some food on a paper plate and brought it outside. When I got outside the two kittens scurried under the house while the mother stayed where she was. I put the food down and picked up the trash, which now had holes in it. I wanted to throw it away but doing so required me to walk in the direction of the kittens and Mama made sure I knew, with her raised hair and hissing, that I should probably make other plans. I decided she was right and put the bag down and went inside.

I quickly grabbed my camera and slowly and quietly opened the window on the door just a crack so I could take pictures. It wasn’t quiet enough as she knew I was there.

Feral cat

It also didn’t help that Frankie grabbed on to the edge of the window and pulled himself up like a bodybuilder so he could peek out the window.

A few minutes later one of the kittens joined Mom at the plate of food but did not eat any. I tried to take pictures through the open crack in the window and at an angle through the window screen. feral tabby cat and Siamese kitten

feral tabby cat and Siamese kitten

The pictures came out better than expected. The last one even shows that the kitten does indeed look Siamese, very similar to Floki when we adopted him. Siamese offspring from a tabby must be rare for feral cats since there are not many feral Siamese cats out there. In addition, the Siamese features must be quite dominant for a kitten to look like this from a tabby mother.

Rose wanted to do something to help and we knew from past experiences that The SPCA would rent traps cheap but we didn’t know how to trap a cat and two kittens at the same time. She decided to call the community office here and left a message with them.  I thought that was a bad idea since they would probably call Animal Control.

After calling the office, Rose Called the local SPCA who told her about the traps. The woman on the phone said that the kittens often follow the mother into the trap but I didn’t believe that since I had seen the mother without the kittens at least twice.

I then called Suncoast Animal League (where I once volunteered for a short time) who gave me the number of Meow Now, A TNVR organization. I called them and left a message but have not yet heard back from them.

We were away from home for several hours on Saturday and when we returned the dry food I left out was gone. I put more food out and Rose saw the mother cat and one kitten at the food bowl that evening. I moved it closer to the house so the neighbors wouldn’t see it but that also made it more difficult for me to see when the cats were there.

This morning I put wet food out for them in addition to dry and was disappointed that the cats didn’t show up before we left for the beach. When we returned I expected to see an empty food bowl but the only creatures to get a meal were about a hundred ants.

Now I can’t help worry that something happened to them. I hope they weren’t caught by the county animal control. That might be good for the kittens but I doubt the mom would fare well. On the other hand, there may be other people who are putting food out as well and our food is not needed as much. Who knows?

 

Did You Do This?


If you are in trouble, just play the cute card. Chris has mastered this technique. Me? Not so much.

Bad Cat Chris

Last weekend we traveled to a far away store where Rose bought a new shirt, among other things, that she really likes. After wearing it once she washed it and hung it from the bedroom door knob. When we went to bed that night and closed the door, the shirt was unwittingly left hanging from Chris’s side of the door. You can see where this is going, can’t you?

Bad cat Chris confronted for the shirt he ruinedAbout thirty minutes after our five o’clock wake up call from Chris, who stands outside the door crying and scratching on the door, Rose discovered that her new shirt had several holes clawed into it. She confronted Chris, who was lying on the bed in the spare bedroom and said in a loud voice, “Who did this?” “Did you do this?”

That’s when Chris started rolling back and forth on the bed, showing her his belly and talking to her. It…

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Packing Assistants


My wife left on a business trip yesterday and she had plenty of help packing for it. Each of our cats did their part in making sure Mom got off to a good start on her trip.

Frankie made sure she didn’t over-pack her suitcase.

cat in suitcase

Chris helped pick out her under garments.

cat in drawer

Puck supervised the whole operation.

cats in luggage

Floki helped out Homeland Security by making sure nobody tampered with her carry-on bag.

cat on luggage

I didn’t have the heart to tell him she was driving.

The next morning everyone wanted to help Mom out to her car.

cats on luggage.

I don’t care what Mick Jagger says, these are the real Mother’s Little Helpers.

Chris’s Kitten is Back


I love days like this when Chris is in the mood to act like a kitten again.

Bad Cat Chris

Chris is one of those cats that continued to play like a kitten well into adulthood. Lately, however, the kitten in him did not come out very often. That changed the other day when Rose found a mouse under the refrigerator. It was a small mouse that I had never seen before. It must have found its way under the fridge shortly after coming out of the package.

I don’t know what is different about this mouse than all his other mice but he plays with it like he is a kitten again, and after several days, he has not become bored with it. I still see him chasing that thing around several times a day. It’s nice to know my lovable “bad cat” has not fully grown up yet.

Bad cat Chris playing with mouse toyBad cat Chris playing with mouse toyBad cat Chris playing with mouse toyBad cat Chris playing with mouse toy

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