Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there. Even if all your kids have fur, you are still a mom that deserves to be pampered today.
The above photo is Abbey and Flash, taken in February, 2010. Abbey never had kittens of her own that we know of but she was very nurturing and was like a mother to some of our boys, including Flash and Chris. Below is Chris with his human Mom the day we adopted him.
It was time to make the bed the other day but who would blame me for not wanting to break this up?
Mark your calendars. Chris will turn ten on May 14 and his eBook will be free that day on Amazon. If you haven’t read it, it covers the first few years after we adopted him, which were the most difficult. Click here for the link.
I wrote about the Friskies Pull n Play toy a few years ago (read post here) but that toy disappeared not long after that post and I recently bought a new one. This time I skipped the included treats and put in treats that I consider to be much healthier. I realize that that toy is like a computer printer, sold with the intent of making big money on the refills, so Purina will not be happy with me.
The Pull ‘n Play comes with Friskies Party Mix, which is a favorite of many cats, and some kind of string-like treat, which most cats don’t care too much about. Both treats, in my opinion, are not healthy options so instead I filled the toy with Instinct Raw Boost Mixers. This is a freeze-dried, raw cat food that I believe is a much healthier option than most commercial treats out there and our cats love them. They also love a similar freeze-dried, raw cat food called Stella and Chewy’s, which has the advantage of coming in larger sizes that are cheaper per ounce but the morsels tend to be too big and flakey for use in this toy.
There is one drawback to substituting the treats; They don’t fall out as easily as the intended treats, but that may not always be a bad thing. My plan is to fill it up before going away on vacation. I tend to worry that something may happen to the cat sitter and having a treat dispenser might just help a little if they don’t get fed. If I will use it for entertainment then I might want to make the hole a little bigger. Perhaps with a file or large drill I can increase the hole size just a little and all will be right with the world.
Here is a video of my first attempt. Of course Chris dominates the toy just like he did with the catnip.
What do you think? Have you tried this toy? Have you tried Instinct or Stella and Chewey’s?
Happy National Siblings Day to all of you who have brothers and/or sisters. We don’t have any true siblings in our home today but you may remember sister and brother Abbey and Alex.
Shortly after adopting those two we adopted brothers Tigger and Flash.
I, too, have a brother and sister but it has been ages since we have had a photo together. The last time we were all in the same state was 20 years ago when my dad died which was not a good photo opportunity. Here is one from 1975.
One morning last week I noticed Chris had blood on his face which I assumed was a result of a fight with Frankie.
I know it was Frankie and not Floki because those two have been in a struggle for dominance since the day we adopted Frankie over four years ago.
I learned long ago that the ancestor of the domestic cat was the African Wildcat. The males of that species tend to be loners so there is no need for an alpha but domestic cats have evolved, or have been bread, to live in groups. I don’t recall reading about the hierarchy of domestic cats but there does seem to be alphas and betas. Chris is definitely an alpha. You may recall the video of Chris the day we adopted him. Even though we had four other cats, Chris just took over the house.
Before Chris, Tigger was our “alpha” but he wasn’t really an alpha. We called him “The Accidental Alpha” because he seemed to bumble into the job, kind of like Baby Huey. You can see him around 38 seconds into the video just lying there watching Chris. I don’t know where our other three cats were but nobody came out to challenge Chris.
The first cat we adopted after Chris was Puck. When we brought Puck home Chris was happy to see him but Tigger avoided the meet and greet.
Frankie’s arrival was different and it caught us by surprise. We assumed Chris would be happy to have a new cat in the house since Chris loves everyone and everyone loves Chris. Not so. We introduced Frankie, as usual, exactly the wrong way. We never had a problem before so we assumed we never would. Frankie didn’t take over like Chris did but I think that Chris and Frankie both sensed a threat in the other. Maybe one alpha can tell another alpha right away.
The problems continued for several weeks.
It took about a month before the two of them could get along even a little and to this day they are like frenemies.
Puck, on the other hand was a good example of a beta cat. Chris and Puck got along very well and never fought because Puck always let Chris have his way. Sometimes I would catch Chris holding Puck down by the scruff of his neck and Puck would let him do it. I even saw Chris dragging him across the floor a few times like that.
Chris does that to Floki now too. I assume it is a way of showing him who the boss is. Even though Floki is not after the alpha job, he still struggles against Chris more than Puck did. Considering how badly he struggles when we try to clip his nails, I am surprised Chris is able to hold him down at all.
I had to cut the video short because I felt like I should separate them.
What about you? Do you have an alpha? Do you have two alphas? How about a female alpha?
While looking for a photo for yesterday’s post, I came across a video of Chris from this day in 2010. It is not one of his best videos but it is nostalgic and does give a little glimpse into what Chris was like back then. There is also a cameo by our cat Alex.
I believe this is also the first HD video I have of Chris. What do you think?
Since Chris had eight teeth pulled, I have been thinking about ways I could help keep our cats’ teeth clean. The vet says dry food is good for that which makes me question my choice of vets. I think dry food cleans a cat’s teeth as well as a cookie cleans a human’s teeth.
I could try to brush their teeth but that would cause trauma and be a nightmare beyond belief. Floki, especially, would be impossible considering we can’t even trim his nails.
Bones are natures teeth cleaner for cats but, even though I feed them raw cat food, I don’t give them bones. I’ve recently started including a few ground chicken wings with bones (the wingettes are all my food grinder can handle) but they need the entire bone to help their teeth. Chris barely eats his wet food the way it is, I can’t see him or any of our boys eating the entire chicken wing, although Frankie might attempt it.
I recently came across Solredo Silver Vine Chew Sticks that claim to clean cat’s teeth among other health benefits. On Amazon they are labeled as “Matatabi Cat Catnip Sticks.” I assume Matatabi is another word for Silver Vine but Catnip is probably wrong since they are Silver Vine sticks.
They arrived last week and I took three out of the resealable package and gave them to our boys with mixed results. They were interested at first but it didn’t last. Frankie even started playing with his Kitty Kick Styx. It seemed holding the sticks was much more effective after the initial interest subsided. Unfortunately, holding them is not realistic. Perhaps they should sell a device that holds them ten inches off the ground.
The other day my wife, Rose, decided to give her iPad to her sister since she never uses it anymore. She asked me to remove all of her information but when I started to do that I noticed she had over a hundred photos, many of them were pictures of our cats from 2016.
I wanted to transfer the photos to my desktop computer but I was reminded over and over why I hate Apple. They have a reputation for being easy but I have always found the opposite to be true. I couldn’t access the files by plugging the iPad directly to my computer so I uploaded them to iCloud but when I tried to access them on my web browser I was informed that only an Apple device could view them.
I could go on and on but I eventually got the photos and I want to share some of them with you.
This first one is Frankie doing what Frankie does. It is a bit grainy, probably because of poor lighting.
The next one is Frankie on one of his favorite napping spots; our printer. I have since put a towel over it to make it more comfortable.
This is Floki the day after we adopted him.
Here is Frankie again. This was shortly after we adopted Floki and everyone picked up an eye infection from him. I think it was also the first time Chris went to the vet for a medical issue.
Floki again five weeks after adoption. Notice his brown color is coming in.
My wife works from home a few days a week. In this photo, she is with another person that I don’t know and had to crop her out. It looks like Chris is helping her here.
Here is Frankie and Floki keeping Rose company while she works.
The next photos are of Chris at the vet for an eye infection that he got from Floki. I won’t include those because I already posted them. You can see them here.
Here is another example of how helpful Chris is to Rose. I’m sure she gets a lot more done when Chris is around.
These next two were taken on the same day. The first is my favorite. It is Frankie and Floki enjoying the sunbeam.
Here is Chris enjoying the sunbeam while Floki naps in his shadow.
Here is Frankie, Chris, and Floki. Naturally, Chris has to be lying on top of someone.
Here is a photo that is grainy but it includes all of our boys.
Finally, here is a photo of Frankie, Floki and Chris on the bed next to what I assume are Christmas presents waiting to be wrapped.
What do you think? Do I need to worry about my job as blog photographer?