Yep. It’s that day again. The day we all celebrate our moms. And deservedly so. The mothers of the world do so much for us (and put up with a lot of brats like me). I appreciate my mommy every day of the year, except, of course, when I’m trying to get off the phone with her. This is a common mom thing, I hear. I think there’s a secret school for it somewhere. You have to start at least 15 minutes before you absolutely HAVE to get off the phone.
But enough about that. I know I posted something like this last year on Mother’s Day, but it’s worth saying again.
HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY TO THE KITTY MOMMIES!
You’re underappreciated. Especially those of you with special needs kitties. It’s not often understood why someone would take on caring for a pet who needs so much help. I really want to punch people who think that animals with problems should just be “put down” because after all, “they’re just animals.” One of these days, I probably WILL punch someone for saying that. And I’ll be ok with it.
One of my fellow bloggers has a paraplegic cat. I admire the hell out of her for it. It warms my heart that there ARE people out there who don’t need to be punched. On the newest episode of My Cat From Hell, the trouble cat had a neurological disorder that made it positively heartbreaking to watch him attempt to walk. And only one eye. But he had someone that took him in and gave him the life he couldn’t have gotten on his own, or maybe even with another caretaker who wouldn’t have had the patience to love and care for him. And despite the fact that he was hell-bent on tormenting the other cat, she never in a million years would give up her baby.
Taco is vaguely special needs. He also has a neurological disorder (that makes him pee where he’s not supposed to when he has a flare-up), but it’s not life-threatening and while it wears my patience extremely thin sometimes, I wouldn’t trade him for the world. He’s my baby. So is Moosh Moosh, despite being what I’m pretty sure can only be described as “a little slow.” I love them just as hard as I would love my own flesh and blood.
So. To the responsible, loving, amazing cat moms — *I* appreciate you. And I’m giving myself a little pat on the back today, too. Because we deserve it.
My mom works weekends, because she has her awesomely fabulous bookstore to run (Sam’s Books, in Oldsmar, Florida, if you’re ever in town, please check her out). My birthday is Saturday, and of course this is a busy day for her, so we celebrated together yesterday. My mother is probably the reason I regard birthdays so highly, as she always acts as if mine is a holiday. We went out to lunch, browsed around a bit then went back to her house where she had a piece of vegan cake waiting for me. Man, I love cake. I love cake like a fat kid loves cake. If I ever lose that 20 pounds (that would still keep me in a perfectly normal range, so no, I do not have body dysmorphic whatever) that I’ve been threatening to lose for the last 16 or so years, I’m going unvegan for a day and eating an entire Publix cake. Because Publix has the best freakin’ cakes ever. I also got to grab a big stack of books which means I will probably not get all the things accomplished that I threatened to accomplish on my time off.
Being at my mom’s means I get to hang out with my kitties. Who I realized, are really now her kitties. Although I picked them both out as babies and was their mommy for the majority of their lives, I am only mildly tolerated now.
Fatty, my fat fat fat baby, doesn’t even do our choreographed stretch when I pick him up just the right way anymore. Of course, he IS turning 16 this year. And he wasted no time gaining back all the weight he lost when he almost died of anemia.
The other baby, Little, has never really been anyone’s cat. He keeps to himself. He allowed me to pet him briefly but was quite clear in letting me know that he was only humoring me.
There’s something sad about ex-mommy status, even though I have two boys of my own at home. I would probably be more upset about it if I didn’t take into account the reasons that I didn’t uproot them when I finally moved out of my mom’s house at the ripe old age of 24, those being that I rent (they’ve been freely allowed to scratch everything forever) and I didn’t want to separate them from my mom, who of course is an amazing mother (obvs, you can see how well I turned out). She’s good for them. I’m ok with being the sister. Besides, color-wise, I have an identical set here (black and a tabby). Life is good.
Side note, I got to go through a bunch of old stuff yesterday including my old dance costumes. I wish they still fit. I’m not kidding when I say I would prance around the house in them.
Too much, in fact. I was pleased to be greeted by both boys. I dropped the boyfriend off at a friend’s house (prior plans, but I just wanted to go home) so I am currently the only target of affection.
So much affection. Taco has followed me meowing for 3 fulls hours now. Everywhere I go, there he is. It’s ridiculous. I mean, I’m glad they weren’t mad at us for having left them for 3 days but I didn’t expect that Taco would be so concerned upon my return that I would leave again. Moosh has been lovey but modestly so, especially in comparison to Mr. Attached To Mommy’s Hip.
I missed my babies too. My mom totally spoiled them. There’s so much food in their bowls they could eat for a week. This is why her cats are overweight. She’s always very concerned about kitties going hungry. She worries about this with humans, too, which is why she brings me vegan cake all the time, usually right when I have sworn to eat healthily (even though being vegan, my food intake is generally on the healthy side, except for my weakness for french fries).
But I do really appreciate her feeding them and checking on them each day. Who knows what kind of trouble they would have gotten into otherwise? My puke-soiled duvet cover is in the dryer as we speak, and if that’s the worst that happened, I’m vaguely ok with that.
We both work two jobs…you’d think they’d be more used to us NOT being home.
Either way, I’m glad to be back, even though it feels like I never left. In case you’re wondering, Ft. Myers Beach is a very lovely destination. I don’t know what it’s like for spring break or during the summer but it was mostly older people and Germans. I don’t know why that area attracts a plethora of Germans, but MAN, is it ever full of them. I wish the weather had cooperated a bit more, but it was pretty and it’s always nice to get away with the boyfriend.
So here it is, day 3 of my interesting week, and nothing even remotely interesting has happened.
Of course, that’s probably because I’m quarantined to the house to avoid infecting my co-workers and other outside life with my germy eyeball, but that’s another story. SOMETHING could have happened. I was on a roll there.
Instead, I have been ignored all day, abandoned by my furry flock. Rejoice, kitties, Mommy is here ALL DAY! So where’s Moosh Moosh? Under the bed. Where he’s been all day. Taco? He’s been intermittently annoying, mostly sleeping but occasionally getting up to meow fiercely for a few minutes at me and then retiring back to slumber. Not man nor beast wants to be around me today.
I did, actually, infect the boyfriend, it would seem, despite my efforts to the contrary. I washed sheets, disinfected surfaces and made pointed efforts to not touch my eye, at least not without a thorough handwashing afterwards.
I did google to see if I could give it to the kitties after a friend jokingly suggested that I’d never get rid of it if I passed it on to them. Didn’t really get a solid answer, so I’m not going to worry about it. They’ll be fine. I think.
I love black cats. I don’t know why. I also love the color black. I’m not goth or anything, it just matches with things so well. And it’s slimming.
Fatty, he lives with my mom, he’s rotund (as the name implies). He’s got medium length hair so he’s extra fluffy, and he’s got big, wide greenish-gold eyes.
Jager, he was our little kitten that we lost to FIP (I always want to write about him but it’s too personal to a story for me to share just yet), he was wiry and had amber colored eyes.
Moosh, he’s a big boy (like a panther, not like Fatty) and his eyes change color, but they’re mostly midway between Fatty’s and Jager’s.
They all look completely different to me. When we lost Jager, the boyfriend didn’t want another black cat, because he felt like it would remind him of Jager too much. To me, this is like saying all girls with blonde hair look the same. That’s ridiculous. Moosh won him over anyway, so that was a moot point. When I talked him into a 2nd, I wanted another black one, but he thought it would be confusing. This is why we don’t have children. What if we had twins? Chaos would ensue. Also a moot point, because Taco came along, and although he has a black brother, I didn’t have much choice in the matter, because Taco was up for grabs, not his brother Zorro.
So because all cats have slightly different facial features, eye shape, eye color, etc., it greatly surprises me when I browse around other cat blogs to see pictures of kitties that look strikingly similar to my own. This is not to say I couldn’t pick mine out of a lineup. Moosh has one little fu manchu whisker on his chin and stray white hairs here and there that I know the exact placement of. Taco has a freckle on his head and a little one on his chin.
I can usually even tell which one of them is sleeping on my feet at night, just by moving. Moosh is more bulk. Taco is more snake. He just melts into wherever he is.
Last night I was out with some friends, including the one who gave us Taco. She still has Zorro, and the momma of the two. We often compare kitty stories, but her boyfriend hadn’t heard them before and was amazed to hear that they’re so similar even though they’ve grown up in two totally different environments. Granted, my friend is one of the awesomest people that I know and a fellow crazy cat lady, so I’m sure the parenting skills are on par with my own, but cats do form their own personalities so it is pretty interesting that their genetics have such an effect on them. They’re both loud, jump chest high and get into EVERYTHING. Zorro doesn’t pee on their couch though. I got the lemon. But lemon cats are my THING, apparently, so I roll with it.
Sigh. This makes me want another black cat.
I talk to my cats. This may make me wacko, I understand this. This is ok with me. All in all, it’s probably a lot like talking to one’s self.
I do know that both Moosh and Taco respond to the sound of their names.
If I coo “Mooshymooshmooshy” real low, Moosh gets all lovey, and will come smush my face, but first he’ll “mrrrp” at me.
Taco, as per usual, will respond to his name loudly. A conversation between Taco and I goes something like this:
“WHAT DO YOU WANT???”
*jumps on lap, usually at an inconvenient time*
I will discuss things with them as if they understand. I tell Moosh that if he doesn’t finish his food, his brother will eat it. Then I tell Taco not to eat his brother’s food (neither takes my advice).
When Taco takes a dump, I tell him how much it stinks, and ask him what the hell he ate to produce such disgusting waste, as if he has a choice in the matter of his food (somewhere, subconsciously, I think he’s stealing shit from the fridge, I guess). He ignores me.
When they’re fighting, I tell them to cut it out and be nice to each other, or to play nice. They stop to look at me for a split second, then immediately resume fighting.
I ask them why they’re not bald, since their hair is EVERYWHERE, mostly stuck in my eyes. Also met with ignoring.
I alert them when there’s another cat or a bunny outside: “Ooooooh it’s a bunny! Look at the bunny, kitties!” while pushing them toward the window to look. This sometimes gets a response in the bunny’s direction, or prompts them to rub on my legs.
Most embarrassing is snuggle talk. This is when I talk to them like they are little babies while making myself sound incapable of brain activity. “Who’s my boo-bear? Who likes a snuggle? You’re my cute-face snugglebunny. You love mommy, don’t you? Mommy loves YOU. Look at that belly! You’re so silly.” As hard as this is to admit, I can go on like this for hours. You know your relationship with your significant other is solid when you can do all of this in front of them without care, and without them batting an eye.
The point of this is, science tells me that they don’t know what the eff I’m saying, that it’s the tone of my voice, blah blah blah. But then, science also tells me that cats only meow at humans…so isn’t that equally as futile as me talking to them? Taco doesn’t have tones in his meows. It’s either WHINE or OMG EMERGENCY. If there was an actual emergency, I would have no idea, because I gave up on running out to find out what’s wrong with him when he makes that cry, because there is never anything wrong with him.
It’s not like people really listen to each other anyway. At least my cats cock their head and give me the impression what I’m saying is important. And for that, I thank them.
As any kitty mommy and crazy cat lady knows, one’s purchases revolve around one’s cats.
For example. I went to Target yesterday for kitty litter, among other things (I never leave Target without spending far more than I’d planned to).
I spotted this.
Despite not having any human children of my own, I’m familiar with the Diaper Genie and its place on the “must-have” list for human parents. WHY DIDN’T I THINK OF THIS??? Literally everyone I know with cats saves their bags from the grocery store and uses those for litter. This normally would create a problem for me because I (try to) use reusable bags at all times. Fortunately, my boyfriend is not as environmentally savvy and never uses the reusables. (Side note: I also collect plastic bags from people I know for my mom to use at her used bookstore, if you live in the Tampa area or even if you don’t, check out Sam’s Books. Thank you in advance for allowing my shameless plug for mi madre.)
Litter Genie. Really. And it was cheap! 15 bucks to avoid the spillage that usually occurs when I try to scoop the TONS (I do mean tons, I cannot fathom how my 2 cats expel SO MUCH) of used litter into the plastic grocery store bags.
I realize that many of my purchases are done with my cats in mind. For example, my fancy vacuum cleaner. I would have bought a Dyson except this one came just as highly recommended for a lot less money. I love it. It’s changed my life. You wouldn’t BELIEVE how much fur this thing picks up. Every time I dump out the canister I wonder how my cats are not bald. WHERE DOES THE FUR KEEP COMING FROM???
Bucket of cat toys. Filled with all the toys the cats only mildly like, because the ones they adore inevitably disappear into the abyss of I-don’t-know-where. Like those mousies with the real fur. Those are pretty much universally adored, right?
Other various cat things.
I have yet to buy a cat tree, though, I can’t find one that I like enough to spend that much money on, or I find ones that I like that I can’t possibly afford. I keep telling myself I’m going to make one but haven’t quite gotten around to it yet.
There’s also the useless purchases, like the beds they won’t sleep in, or the litter mats that do absolutely nothing to keep litter from getting everywhere. But there’s more used than not.
Had you told me, say, 10 years ago, that any of these purchases would one day excite me so, I would have laaaaaaaughed and laughed. But now I am a grownup, sorta, and a full-fledged kitty mommy. So I’ll just shrug. I did it all for the kitties.
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!
The only reason I go to the same doctor is because I’m too lazy to find a new one, even though I don’t care for him very much. But vets, those are a different story. I am a veterinary snob.
Jäger was the uber lemon cat. I say this lovingly. But he ALWAYS had something wrong. He had cat herpes. Yes, cats get herpes. It’s not like people herpes, it just had something to do with his immune system. He was always getting eye and nail bed infections (and it didn’t help that he got his claws stuck in EVERYTHING). I was like BFFs with my vet. Then he got really sick and in the process of figuring out what was wrong, I was there more than I was at home. The only reason I think I stayed halfway sane was because my vet was the shit. I ask a lot of questions. I want to know everything. And the kind of vet I like is the one that answers them and doesn’t treat me like an imbecile just because I google. Yes, I know I don’t have a veterinary degree. So sue me if I like to arm myself with information.
Also on the qualification list: must be a cat person. I have nothing against dog people. Dogs are fun and adorable. I’m just not a dog person. If I was a dog person, I’d probably want a dog person vet. We’re just different breeds.
Moosh, good son that he is, rarely has anything wrong with him, other than being a weirdo. So we went a long time without a vet visit after Jager died and we got Moosh. When it came time for his yearly exam, I found out my vet was gone. The new vet, he just didn’t do it for me. It’s not like he was a horrible vet — the bar is set very high and he didn’t quite measure up. The “it” factor wasn’t there.
Then I went on a new vet search (actually, first I tried in vain to find my old vet). I lucked out. My current vet meets my high standards. She answers my questions before I even ask them. And she ONLY treats cats.
Maybe I’m crazy. In fact, I’ve been told this a lot. But even if I don’t like my own doc, I can fend for myself. My babies can’t tell me what’s wrong with them.
Crazy is more fun than sane, anyway.