I watched My Cat From Hell last night.
Spoiler alert: The cat had cancer. Why don’t ya throw me for a loop there, Jackson? CRY CITY.
In honor of the lovely lady who had such a big heart that she took in this stray feral cat that for two years did nothing but eat and hide and strike at her, I am going to ignore the fact that Taco woke me up yesterday with a well-placed paw on a sore ab muscle and focus on how lucky I am to be in a position to have rescued the kitties that I have and that my boys give me love and affection (for the most part) in return.
I also don’t have much else to write about today, so this is a picture tribute.
Oh, and the kitty got surgery that removed all the cancer and with Jackson’s help, he even got domesticized enough to let the lady pet him. Hopefully that road continues to be a rewarding one for her. You go, girl. And props to the husband, who didn’t really understand her need to help this cat but went along with it all anyway. Ugh. I’m tearing up again just thinking about it all.
I know I’m not really on the cutting edge here. Too Cute is a show that’s been on Animal Planet for awhile.
But I feel it’s time that I express my utter love and devotion to it.
If you’re unfamiliar with the format of this wonderful show, it follows 3 litters of different breeds of kittens (or puppies, and they branch out with other animals on occasion) from right about the time they’re going to open their eyes to a few months old, usually when they’re old enough to wean.
Now I’m not really a proponent of breeding cats. Not that I can’t appreciate the beauty of different breeds, but a) there are a lot of not-so-reputable breeders out there who can do a lot of damage with inbreeding and such, b) it’s really going against nature and natural selection which is such an amazing process in itself that I think humans have some friggin’ nerve to try and mess around with it and c) THERE ARE A BAZILLION STRAY CATS OUT THERE THAT NEED HOMES.
They never show the people in this show except for a hand here and there and occasionally children, but I do often wonder about the back story. Are these people breeders? Do they just love their purebred so much they want to pass on the bloodline? And most importantly, how the hell do these people (who usually seems to have rather nice homes) deal with cats that aren’t spayed or neutered? Both male and female cats that aren’t fixed are prone to a host of what we conceive (double entendre! Boom.) as behavorial issues because those kitties are horny little MFers. Like spraying and howling. Cat-in-heat spray is worse than cat pee.
Despite these unanswered questions, I adore this show. And I spend the entire hour (only the cat ones, sorry dog people, I love all animals but I just don’t love them as much as cats) squealing (and I mean that quite literally). I squeal, I “aww,” I talk to the kittens as if they’re actually in front of me (and as if they give a shit). I watched last week’s episode last night (god, I love my DVR). One of the breeds was Munchkins. I know from watching Cats 101 that this is actually a controversial breed, and in fact not really a breed at all, it’s just a genenic mutation. They have tiny legs. Which is why some people feel they shouldn’t be bred for that specifically. Putting all controversy aside, watching a munchkin kitten try to get around on tiny legs is AMAZINGLY ADORABLE. Only 2 of the 6 kittens in the litter got the tiny leg trait, and they were named PORKCHOP AND NUGGET.
I could just die. There was also a gratuitously delightful scene of a kitten getting lost under a hat. I don’t think I need to tell you how cute a hat/cat turtle is.
Sometimes I can get Taco interested in the TV. He’ll sit there and stare intently. Sometimes I can’t get him into it. Maybe he’s feeling his age. Moosh watched it once. The boyfriend refuses to watch this show. In fact, he thinks I’m crazy. I think it’s the squealing and the baby talk. I can’t help it. It’s just TOO CUTE. And honestly, we need more of that in the world.
Thanks to those of you that responded to my candle/plug-in harmful to cats question, I feel a little less clueless in my lack of knowledge. No one has really heard of anything.
I had to take Taco for his laser pew pew pew vet visit today, so I figured I’d ask while I was there (after gushing over the 3 black kittens waiting for homes in the waiting area! Holy crap, they were SO cute. GAWD I love black cats).
The receptionist had NEVER heard of it before, so she went back and asked the vet and vet techs…also nothing. And this is an all-cat vet, so I would assume that the field of knowledge relating directly to cats would be more vast than that of an all-around vet. There is apparently something about cats not agreeing with pine and cedar oil, but nothing about the livers and their lack of metabolizing aromas.
So I’m going to keep my Bath and Body Works plug-ins. Even though I’m not overly fond of the one in the living room currently, and my kitchen smells like a pancake. And I only burn candles every once in awhile anyway.
Oh, she did tell me to check the website for Cornell University. I didn’t see anything about this topic, but there is a TON of kitty info there. Who can’t use that?
I’m 30, and I’m pretty sure if my biological clock was going to start ticking, it would have by now. Granted, my mom was 38 when she had me so I probably have time to change my mind if I so desire.
But I’m pretty sure I won’t.
I don’t get all goo-goo-ga-ga over kids. Sure, they’re cute, but I’ll take my cats any day. They depend on my for food and attention but for the most part, they’re pretty self sufficient. I don’t have to take them to school or make them do their homework. I don’t have to worry that they’re hanging out with a bad crowd. I don’t have to let them borrow my car. Not that kids are BAD, by any means, but I think they’re not for me. I’ve heard the whole “Oh, when you actually have one, you’ll understand.” Ok, but what if I DON’T? There’s no 30-day trial period where I can decide “Eh, this just isn’t a good fit” and stuff it back in there. There’s no going back. And on top of that, there’s 9 months of morning sickness, swollen feet, kicking baby to get through first. And if that wasn’t enough, let’s throw in labor pains and the actual process of shoving a watermelon through…well…you get the idea. I’m crossing my legs just thinking about it.
Cats? I’ll goo-goo-ga-ga over them every time. There’s something so innocent and loving about them that doesn’t turn into teenage angst someday. I love being a cat mom. But in some respects, I think it’s a hard choice because unlike kids, you’re almost guaranteed to outlive them. So theoretically I’m setting myself up for repeated heartbreak. I’ve been there. We put our beloved 1 1/2-year-old baby Jager to sleep after a month or so of tests, medicine x-rays and a surgery ruled out everything except Feline Infectious Perionitis. There’s no test for it, because cats can carry the virus that causes it without it ever turning into FIP, so a positive result doesn’t necessarily mean that’s what it is. There’s also no cure. It’s fatal. It was an extended heartbreak because every test carried a little bit of hope that just got smashed, and the dread slowly built until it was settled. There’s another thing you don’t have to do with human kids. Decide if euthanasia is the humane choice. Yeah, there’s the decision to take off life support but you’re not actually giving the orders to essentially cause the death. And worse, you have to decide WHEN. Too soon? Too late?
I know there are people who don’t feel the way I do about the furry babies. People who wouldn’t think twice about putting a cat to sleep. But this is me, and the older I get, the more I think I was meant to be a cat mom. I know the parents want grandkids, but frankly, I think I’m too selfish for that kind of commitment. There are days when even scooping out a litterbox is too much of a bother. How the hell would I deal with diaper changes and 3am feedings? And GODDAMN how do people afford children? The boyfriend and I both work two jobs, and while we don’t make crazy money, I’m pretty sure our incomes are above average. I couldn’t possibly see how we could add that expense in. Hell, I don’t know how my mom did it.
There are plenty of kids in this world. Ones that go hungry. Ones that are abused. Ones that are homeless. In some ways I feel that it would be pretty selfish of me to bring another one into this world just so I could pass on my (admittedly amazing) genes.
For now, I’m good with things the way they are. I haven’t even come to terms with the fact that I, myself, am an adult now. I just bought a pair of ballet shoes on a whim. Am I taking dance lessons? No. I just want to play dress-up, apparently. I’m obviously unfit for motherhood.
A scientific mind overanalyzes everything. This is what I tell myself to make myself feel better, anyway.
Although I am a fan of all animals, I am most definitely a cat person. I won’t even kill insects unless they are stinging me or in my house, which I consider fair game.
After a lifetime of careful thought, this is my conclusion: I love things more when I have to fight for it. This is true of my love life as well.
The boyfriend and I will have been together for 9 years as of June 7th. We’ve definitely had our ups and downs but in the end, I love the hell out of him and I know he loves the hell out of me — I mean, how could he not? But we don’t always LIKE each other. I’m not saying that we ever hate each other…we’re just both independent people who are totally ok having alone time and we are both easily annoyed. There is a balance of power in a relationship that is always shifting. My theory is that this is what keeps things interesting. We always love each other, but the upper hand goes back and forth.
This, I think, is the basis of why I am a cat person. Hear me out.
The balance of power is always shifting in the kitty/kitty mommy relationship. They sit on your lap JUST as you’re about to get up, but refuse to sit there when you put them there yourself. They adore you when they’re ready to be fed, but might completely ignore you for an entire day in between feedings. Dogs love you ALL the time. Nothing against dogs, or people who love them. Personally, I just love a good fight. This is a genetic thing. I’m cocky, I can be arrogant, and every once in awhile I need a worthy opponent to take me down a peg or two.
So those times when I’m walking up to my house and see one of the babies jump in the window, looking happy to see me (when it’s NOT time for food), it brings me joy. They love me. I’ve won one round in the uphill lifetime battle. When I get an after-food snuggle, or a purr without being touched, I win. I will never continuously hold the upper hand. It just makes the victories that much sweeter.
And boyfriend (I know you tell me you read this but I don’t believe you), I love you. I know this is a RIDICULOUS anniversary message but after 9 years, I had to try something new. So here it is. Thank you for loving me and the kitties even though sometimes you pretend not to. And thank you for being my lifetime sparring partner. You keep me interested. Otherwise you’d be long gone =P
Can we get a kitten?
Well, fancy that. Moosh Moosh was the Cat of the Day on Catster’s community page!
He did absolutely nothing to garner this honor but I am awash in motherly pride nonetheless.
My baby is famous.
Taco, on the other hand, loudly puked this morning about 30 minutes before I had to wake up. Apparently he managed to get some on the tile of the bathroom but did not miss the carpet.
I don’t remember signing up for puke pick-up duty.
Despite this, the news that a co-worker found baby kittens in his yard made me momentarily forget how expensive the cats are. One of them is all gray! And the silly boy did not bring pictures. In an office full of cat people? Ridiculous. I let myself get a little excited because I know that my best chance of convincing the boyfriend a 3rd cat is an OK idea is a solid gray kitten. One came up to our porch once and I had convinced him that we needed to take it in when a big fat neighborhood cat scared it away. Never saw the angelbaby again. I imagine it went back to its forever home. But I digress. Apparently one of kittens has funky legs. He googled and discovered its a common kitten thing, he just needs a little physical therapy, but soon. They’ve decided they want to keep that one. Which reminds me of the time I wanted to adopt a 3-legged cat (black, or course), but the boyfriend insisted he would have a hard time getting up and down the stairs. This is not true, of course, cats adapt very well.
I guess I love a good underdog. Undercat? Doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.
Not that I’m allowed to get another cat. The boyfriend has made it clear that if another cat moves in, he’s moving out. He does really useful things, like taking out the trash and using a toilet instead of a litter box. He’s also there for me to annoy incessantly when I’m bored with doing that to the cats. I guess there’s the whole “love” thing, too.
But every time I see adoptable cats, I want them. They are calling to me. I was at PetSmart today (I only shop there because I can get Taco’s prescription food there, which they SO INCONVENIENTLY put next to the adoptable cats) and these kitties were CALLING to me. One literally was, I told him I couldn’t have another mouth in the house. Taco is deafening enough. But there is always one that really really gets me. This time, it was a 10-month-old tabby/white mix. I generally don’t even like partly white cats (I like them all, I just usually don’t find them attractive). This big guy was so cute. I am a sucker for big paws, and he stretched those big mitts out at me, just BREAKING my heart.
This is where my moral dilemma comes in, even though it is a hypothetical one, since I can’t get another cat.
The kitties at this PetSmart were from the Pinellas County Animal Shelter. The animal shelter is NOT a no-kill facility, meaning if these guys don’t don’t find homes, they’re euthanized for space. I know it’s logistically not possible for a state-funded operation to avoid this, but I don’t particularly want to support it, either. So how can you choose between saving an animal that might otherwise be “put down” or supporting a facility (through your adoption fee) that makes every effort to not euthanize?
All of my cats are strays. Except Taco, his mom was rescued while preggers, so he’s never really known the streets. As much as I dream about having full-blood Bengal or a Cheetoh or a Toyger, there are so many stray, unwanted and unloved babies out there without it being necessary to breed more. Besides, Taco is part Bengal and if I pretend he’s bigger, Moosh is almost Panther-like.
I guess the end result is what really matters. You save an animal, no matter how you do it.
And when I can, I assuage my guilt by donating when I can, and taking my old clothes over to the Friends of Strays thrift store. I wish I could volunteer but two jobs take up most of my time and I doubt I’d be much help crying over wanting to take them all home. It would be like putting a drug addict in an evidence room.
Just in case anyone feels like donating…these are really good no- kill shelters that can always use the help:
I stopped by my mom’s yesterday. I haven’t seen Fatty and Little for a couple weeks.
Cats are really funny. They are both so much better. So much so, in fact, that Little went back to his routine of hiding from me immediately, and Fatty punished me for my recent absence by ignoring my love for awhile. No purr.
It was funny, the moment I could tell that he decided I had suffered enough. He jumped down from his box and swirled around my arm, started purring and plopped his fat self down on my hand. Apparently I should visit more often.
Little never did come out from under the bookcase, even with treats. I got him to move a tiny little bit for one, but Fatty ran under and ate the others. I naively thought that Little meowing at me to pet him a few weeks was because he decided he liked me. Silly me, it’s just because he felt like shit. If you are a crazy cat lady, you understand this feeling of failure. In my mind, every cat should love me because they should KNOW. Just like I think every stray cat I see, whether it’s at a shelter or on the street, is saying to me “I KNOW you would love me SO much and I would LOVE to come home with you. PLEASEPLEASEPLEASEPLEASEPLEASE!”
But I digress. It’s a huge relief to see them acting like normal, since the fleas took so much power from them. I hate fleas. I really hate them. And I hate that the lack of winter here, hence lack of cold, cold that I HATE, is partially to blame for the fuckers’ survival (the fleas, not the cats).
I live in a townhouse so I don’t really have much of a yard for fleas to live in. This is probably why I have been able to somewhat control them with Moosh and Taco. But I am terrified of them taking root. I have boraxed, revolutioned, vacuumed and washed. Taco was ok with the natural flea spray the first few times I used it on him, but now he will gouge me to get away.
By the way, that stuff REALLY freakin’ works. Vet’s Best. I used it on myself. I read the bottle…it doesn’t say not to.
Anyway. Fatty is good. I’m pretty sure Little is, since for him, hiding is normal. Fatty is getting back to being fat. He actually only weighs a little more than Moosh and Taco, Not quite sure how his giant gut does not factor more in to the equation.
And now Taco is eating my sandal, so I think that means I have to go pay attention to him. This is fine with me, I’m sick and feel like crap anyway. Laying down DOES sound like a good idea.
So, Moosh. He’s a weirdo. After we initially fell in love with his face nuzzling, we got him home to learn his many quirks.
First, he was kinda cross-eyed when he was younger. We really didn’t think he could see up close at all. It seems to have straightened out a bit but sometimes I still don’t think he can see up close. He also needed to try everything once. I found him climbing a wall. He singed his whiskers sniffing a candle. He’s never done either of these things again.
We also learned that he was a biter. If you walked away from playing with him, he would lunge at your leg and bite your calf. Not hard, but weirdly…like he would just open his mouth and aim at your leg. No paws, just like a shark. He’s a little better now that he’s older but every once in awhile he gets a wild hair and nips.
Most random thing ever: he licks blinds. I don’t know WHY he licks blinds, but he tends to do it more in mornings than he does at other times of the day.
He has the pussiest of meows. I know from past experience that he is capable of a howl, but he chooses to squeak instead. He is the bigger of the two cats and it’s hilarious to hear them whine together…Taco’s big MRROOOOWW to Moosh’s “mreep”
He gets what we call the “skinny face” when he’s happy. It’s hard to explain, but his face looks skinnier when he’s in la-la-land purring. It might have something to do with his eyes getting super dilated to make his face extra black (because, as you know, black is slimming), but then, he does that when he’s ready to pounce too. Who knows.
He loves the vet. He hates getting there, but once he’s there he parades around the exam table like it’s his time to shine. He doesn’t even mind the rectal thermometer.
He perches. You can’t just hold him. He needs to be on your shoulders. He’s really pretty good there, although he claws the boyfriend a lot because he never listens to me. You have to adapt to his climb and put your arm up to help. Otherwise a back paw will gouge your chest…or push your shirt down, putting you at risk for flashing.
I like these perches most of the time (when I’ve been dutiful about clipping his claws), there is nothing quite like walking around with a cat as a parrot on your shoulder.
Happy Mother’s Day to the forgotten — the mothers of the furry ones. The mothers who will forever answer the question “When are you going to have kids?” with the answer “I have cats.” Those of us who are amazing at raising furballs, who read the labels on cat food, who don’t just think of their animals as pets.
We’re just as mother-y as if we’d given birth, but with some extra perks. My babies will never borrow my car, go on dates with strange boys, never stay out all night or get arrested. I can lock them in my house without DCF coming after me.
I worry about them as much as I would if I had a human baby, obsessing over odd behavior and whether it’s vet-worthy. And I can do this, because I know them so well that I know when one is even the slightest bit off.
I’m not saying we’re better than human mothers, we’re just a different breed. It takes all kinds in this world and someone’s gotta do it. Kittehs need love too. And they give it back ten-fold.
So to all the mommies out there, the kitty mommies, the dog mommies, the ferret mommies — whatever kind of animal mommy you are — HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY. Even if your cats forgot to get you a card (*cough cough* thanks a lot, boyfriend), I salute you.
And Happy Mother’s Day to the Evil Stepmother (who is not really evil at all), who is also a great kitty mommy and who was the only person on the planet who could have ever convinced my dad to get a cat.
And last but by FAR not the least, Happy Mother’s Day to my own awesome mommy, who not only raised a good kitty mommy but who is a fabulous kitty mommy and grandmommy herself. I LOVE YOU!