Tales of our feline friends
Calling all cat lovers. Come share our stories about our cats and help raise funds for animal rescue.We will also review favorite books on Cats and Cat stories. Cats and all pets enrich our lives in so many ways. Let's try to give something back.
Get to Know our Cats
All our cats are adopted strays or orphans. We now have five. Two were adopted from friends or shelters. The other three just showed up looking for a home and to be loved. I keep saying "no more cats" but the word must be out in the cat world. They are all special. What a shame irresponsible people are to blame for their plight but at least a few have found a safe haven.
Creamer's Last Edition
You will be missed
This is a sad edition. Our Creamer is no longer with us. We were blessed with his love and affection for 6 months and we are glad we were able to bring him a level of health and comfort he would have never known as a stray. He did not suffer for which we are thankful. We are not sure why he ran in the road (he usually stayed very close) but we will surely miss our "little soldier". May he rest in peace.
The Little Mother
Our Baby Girl's Baby
When we found Penny she was not the picture of health. She had to make many trips to the vet for vaccinations, worms, and checkups. These trips terrified her and she would cling to me and even crawl inside my blouse to try to hide.
On one such visit waiting for the vet, I spotted a basket filled with little toy kitty heads, just the heads. They were free from a pet-med. vendor. I put one in my purse to take home. Once home, I gave it to Penny. She immediately took it for hers. Kittens and Puppies can be a lot like human children. They love toys and stuffed animals. Penny not only played ceaselessly with her "baby" but she also would carry it around in her mouth and to bed with her just as if it was her real baby.
If you toss baby across the floor she chases and tumbles after it and will bring it back to you to throw again and again until she tires and lays down for a rest. Another favorite game is for her to be on the bed and we toss baby to her. She will hit it back to you with her paw "tennis style" over and over. I am trying to get a movie of this game to post to this site soon.
We have a swimming pool and the pool area is one of Penny's favorite places. Sometimes baby would disappear and we would find it in the pool skimmer. But if she can, Penny will rescue baby from the pool by reaching as far as she can to snag it with her paw. She will then bring baby to one of us to dry it.
Other times we will hear a mournful, loud, cat cry which sounds like a distress call. We will run to see what is wrong and will find Penny walking around with baby in her mouth. We are not sure why she does this, but if you console her and tell her baby is OK, she stops. We can only theorize that for some reason she feels her baby is in danger.
Baby gets lost quite often and we have to go on the hunt. I get a flash light and say to her "let's go find baby". She will follow me and sometimes lead me until we find it. Usually it is under the china cabinet or stove. Once we found it stuck to the back of our kitchen door. We discovered that baby has a magnet in it. Apparently it was meant to be a refrigerator magnet. It's a fun game to "stick" baby somewhere at cat level and see how long it takes Penny to find it. I acquired two more "babies" at subsequent visits to the vet in case baby ever truly got lost.
Penny is three years old now and she still loves and plays with her baby like she was a kitten. I hope she always will. She brings such joy to our lives just watching her.
Ringo - Garfield in the Flesh
Is that Lasagna?
We have had many cats over the years. I was always amused at the cartoon strip Garfield. He was such a typical tabby cat. But of course a cat would never eat Lasagna or would he? Most cats will beg for a favorite treat. Scooter will come at the smell of an open can of tuna in 10 seconds or less. But that is pretty much all she enjoys as a treat.
When Ringo came into our home, we were impressed that he behaved more like a dog than cat. Begging was no exception. If he smelled meat, he would appear out of nowhere. When I would prepare lunches in the early morning, he would cry, beg and even nip at my heels for a morsel of lunch meat. When we put chicken or hamburgers on the grill, he arrives to patiently watch and wait for it to be done. He loves meat, any meat, but he is discerning. He will not touch fat or gristle. If you give him meat with any fat, he will eat the meat and the fat will be left in the bowl.
We do try not to spoil him too much or give him more than two treats a day but he is the protector of our house, yard and other cats and he deserves it.
Ringo will beg for things you just know he won't eat. I will say something like "Ringo, you don't like carrots, or onions". One sniff and he will give up and leave.
He has however surprised us on more than one occasion. One such occasion was when I was serving up Lasagna. I said "Ringo, you don't like Lasagna". He kept begging so I gave in and cut some up and put it in his bowl. He ate every bite. He will also eat small cut up pieces of pizza. There really is a Garfield! He has even eaten chunks of tomato sprinkled with salt. What a cat.
The others have more typical tastes except for Penny. She does not like anything but her cat food. She will not even eat tuna fish. Once in a while if I am making a ham sandwich she will come in the kitchen and just sit there. That means she wants a little piece of ham. That is her only extravagance.
Cats are a trip!
Every Cat Deserves a Home
We have known Boots since he was a kitten. He belonged to a very dear neighbor. She was a single Mom with two boys. She loved animals and had dogs, cats, birds, fish and even raised an orphaned squirrel. She had taken in a pregnant female stray. She gave away all of the kittens except two- Boots and Cowboy. They were both outside cats and one day Cowboy did not come home. We never knew what happened to him but between foxes, huge owls and even occasional coyotes; kittens have a rough start outside in the rural area where we live. But Boots made it and grew into a handsome, gray and white tom with beautiful emerald green eyes. He seemed more wild than tame and we rarely saw him after he grew up.
A couple years ago, our neighbor got sick. She had cancer. She fought the disease with all the strength she had but lost the fight. We did all we could to help her family during this most difficult of times. One way to help was to continue to feed and care for her animals after she was gone. Her boys went to live with their Dad but he could not take the dogs and cats. Her family managed to find homes for the dogs and the inside cat and even another cat, which had adopted this family, we named Hobo. But Boots was so wild and afraid he could not be caught to even try to give to another family. He would come every day to his front porch for supper, then disappear again. Slowly after many days of patience and showing him we meant him no harm, we got him to trust us and even allow us to touch him.
After the house was empty we had to coax Boots to our yard for meals. Before long he was letting us pet him and he would purr and rub all around our ankles. He would go back and forth between his yard and ours, coming to see us when he was hungry. Sometimes we would not see him for days, and then he would appear, obviously having been in a cat fight. The house sold and the new owners really did not want a cat but agreed that Boots could "hang around" if he liked.
Our cat Ringo, always the defender, would not let him come near our house. They are not at all fond of each other. After a year or so and much refereeing on my husband's part, Ringo pretty much leaves Boots alone. He lives under our carport in the back yard where we store our camper and boat. He loves the boat and if it is uncovered, spends most of his days there. My husband calls him Capt'n Boots. He is fixed and we give him flea drops to keep him comfortable. We tried to crate him one day to take him to the vet but there was nothing doing. He would have torn us to shreds. Oh well, he has survived on his own all these years. He is affectionate towards us but you can tell he still misses his family. We do our best to take care of him and show him love. It's the least we could do for our dear friend and her special kitty.
Tips for Cat Lovers
Hooray for Pledge's Fabric Sweeper for Pet Hair! This clever tool is the best thing ever for getting pet hair off furniture and fabrics and I've tried them all. Take a look at www.Pledge.com
Ever tried to give a cat a pill? It's a good way to get bitten. A friend of mine recommended a product called "Pill Pockets". They are little treats with a "pocket" for the pill and they really work! You can find them at most pet supply stores.
Lost and Found
The Florida summers are sometimes called "the mean season" because of the almost daily afternoon thunderstorms. They can be violent with high winds, up to four inches of rain, frequent lightning and even hail. It was one such July afternoon when we were visited by one of these storms.
After it was over our son went next door to see if some of his friends wanted to skateboard or something. Not long after that, one of the boys came knocking at the door and implored me to come see what they had found. It was a kitten. He said they found it in a storm drain. I said, "I don't want to see it". I knew if I saw it, I was in trouble. He begged and said that my son wanted me to come. So, next door I went and in the neighbor's garage my son was holding the most pathetic looking kitten I have ever seen. She was wrapped in one of their jackets, shivering. I said" Oh my, poor baby". She was wet and cold and starving. They got some soft cat food and a little milk for her and she ate greedily. I told them "not too much or she will get sick". The boys begged their mom to keep her but she refused. She had been sick and just couldn't keep any more pets. At that point my own son started begging us to take her home. What could I do?
We brought her home and I fixed a warm bath in the sink. As scared as she was she trusted me and let me bath her. She was covered in fleas. I truly could not see what had kept this little baby alive. She could not have weighed more than 12 oz or so. After her bath, we fed her again and made her a nice warm bed out of an old aquarium laid on its side. From the moment she was bathed and warm she started purring loudly and has never stopped. She was warm and safe now.
She immediately took us as her adopted parents, but our son is forever her hero. She is the sweetest kitty in the world. She has brought more joy to our home then we could have ever imagined. We are convinced she is a gift from God. She purrs and talks to us in syllables. She is our baby girl. You can guess why she is named Penny. She was no bigger than some of the stuffed toys she now plays with. Check back again for more Penny pictures and stories. She has grown into a beautiful cat.
The Little Princess
Penny All Grown Up
It's amazing how animals are so much like us. Little boys are rough and tumble and little girls are sweet and dainty. Ringo is all boy, plays rough, fights to defend his turf and purrs very softly as if purring is not macho. Penny is all little girl, she is dainty, quiet, shy, eats little meals and is oh so sweet. But she also knows she is beautiful and so loved. She does not act spoiled or snobbish or aloof like some cats. She acts just like a princess.
Although she is afraid of strangers, around us she is all love, purrs, rubs and kisses. She will look you right in the eye and carry on a conversation with you. If she wants to go outside she patiently sits buy the door looking at you with pleading eyes. She sweetly looks at a closed window as if to say, "Can you please open this so I can look outside?"
We do not have any girls in our family between me and all my siblings. I always wanted a little girl to love and spoil. Now I have one and the best thing is, she doesn't grow up and move away! My husband is just as much in love with Penny, she is his little girl. She can get him to do anything her little heart desires. She loves for him to take her outside and pet her until she feels safe enough to wander off and watch the birds or squirrels. And then of course our son adores her. He rescued her and she holds a very special place in his heart and in all our hearts.
Ringo Loves Penny
A Lassie Story
Ringo is the guardian of our yard. He will challenge and fight any stray cat which enters his turf. So when we brought Penny into our home, we were worried he may see her as an outsider. She was so small and defenseless. We kept her in the bathroom if no one was around to watch over her. Ringo eyed her with curiosity. Even in play he could easily hurt her. My husband kept encouraging me to let them get to know each other. Slowly they interacted under our supervision. He did not show any aggression towards her. Instead he exhibited almost a brotherly affection. He watched her and would play patiently with her. It was soon obvious he was no threat and we were no longer concerned.
Outside he would stay with her and even shepherd her home if she strayed into the neighbor's yard. They would romp and play. I even saw him catch a small lizard and give it to her as if to say" Look here, this is how you hunt". His love for her was obvious and she in turn followed his lead.
Penny is inherently shy and fearful. She hates loud noises and is terrified of motors. One day when she was exploring outside the lawn mower apparently scared her and she went to hide the only place she knew- the storm drain. When we noticed she was nowhere to be found we began calling her, to no avail. We searched for her for quite some time. Finally my husband went to the storm drain and called her and heard her faint crying. He removed the grate and could see her, terrified in the pipe. We called and called her but she would not come out. We were about to give up when we looked up and here comes Ringo sauntering up to the hole. He looked in and we again called for Penny. It was like a Lassie movie. We said "Ringo, go get Penny". He looked down again and jumped in. He went into the pipe and to our amazement, Penny followed him out. We all cheered and praised Ringo. He was our hero!
He received much love and treats for rescuing our baby girl. We have told this story to many people to their astonishment so we wanted to share it with you as well. Cats are much smarter than a lot of people give them credit for!
Dewey Readmore Books
More than your ordinary cat
Being a cat lover for years I was surprised to find out how famous Dewey is and that I had never heard of him. I also have cat lover friends who had never heard of him so it seemed appropriate to get the word out on Squiddo. My Mother gave me a copy of this book and I admit I was skeptical. I am not a big reader and get easily board with some books. How much could a book about a cat hold my interest? Well, I was wrong. Dewey is one of the best, heartwarming, entertaining books I have ever read. I literally could not put it down.
Dewey was found abandoned in a library book drop on one of the coldest nights in the town of Spencer, Iowa. The book tells the story of his adoption by the librarian Vicki Myron, then the library and eventually the entire town. Having 5 cats I should not have been amazed at his charm, smarts, and love he gave but this cat was exceptional. It was almost like he was a human being in a cat's body. He completely transformed the library and town and became world famous. He became an integral part of Vicki's life, helping her through many trials and tribulations. I don't want to give the story away but any cat lover who has not read this book must add it to their "to do" list. Go to the library or purchase a copy for yourself. You will not regret it.
Great Books On Amazon
A must read for all cat lovers
Farewell to Scooter
I am sorry to report that Scooter, the Matriarch has passed. She died peacefully at home in her sleep. She was 18 years old! She will be surely missed.
Meet Scooter. She was our first kitty. She is eleven now. She is a beautiful calico with all the calico attitude. She is the queen of the castle. She alone ruled the castle for seven years. Her favorite thing to do is to be brushed. She will sit in grass and purr as long as you will sit there and brush her. She just has an air of royalty about her. She never played much past her first year. Her job was to just add beauty and dignity to our home. Her world came crashing down when we adopted Ringo. Ringo wanted so badly to play with her and she would have nothing to do with him. She would hiss and growl at him. He could not understand why she would not play. Poor Miss Kitty, as we call her. She was not dethroned but she had an unruly prince whom she did not adopt to contend with. After four years now, Ringo leaves Scooter alone and she had come to terms with sharing her family with two other cats. She seems to have mellowed in her old age and she still adds beauty to our humble home.
The Working Cat
It's been a hard days work. Time for a break! You have heard of working dogs, well Ringo is a working cat. No joke. Some cat breeds really do feel that they have a purpose and want to serve their masters just like dogs. Ringo is such a cat. He truly believes it is his job to protect us from all manner of threats such as stray cats, mice, rats, snakes, moles, bugs; you name it, he will defend us from these invaders, especially at night. He is a very good hunter and has brought us many presents. We praise him for the rats and mice but oh my when it's a bird, I get very upset. Bless his heart, he does not understand.
Growing up I could never understand the cartoons where they "put the cat out at night". Well if Ringo doesn't go out after 2:00 AM he will wake you up and demand to go out. He has been in many cat fights and is even now recovering from a Saturday night fight. He is fixed but you would never know it by his protective nature. He watches over the female cats during the day and gets upset if they wander out of our yard. He will even chase them home.
Then of course there are his people. We belong to him, not vice versa. If we pet or show attention to a cat he does not know, he gets very upset and will chase the intruder off. If one of us is sick or feeling down, he is right there. He will climb right up on your chest and snuggle under your chin. He will not leave until he thinks you are better. I would dare say he has many dog qualities. He is loyal, faithful, comes when you call him, and he loves to be petted and begs for treats. He loves meat, any meat. He is not shy and loves everybody. He is the first to great guests as to say" Welcome, come in and pet me".
Our vet once told me that orange tabbies are one of the friendliest of cats, and that he is, but he also has a job to do and he takes it seriously!
We already had four cats which we care for. Three are inside/outside pets which are licensed, vaccinated etc. and one who was orphaned by a neighbor who passed away who we feed and administer flea drops. He spends all his time outside either in our yard or his. Recently there appeared a very small cream colored tabby shyly trying to gain access to our yard. At first the alpha male Ringo would have none of it. I also chased him away because strays can be mean and we have 2 females to protect. He was clearly fertile.
My husband discovered one day that he was friendly, so sometimes he would pet him but not feed him. He was obviously eating somewhere; he was thin but not emaciated. I did not want another cat. Four to feed is enough. We considered calling Animal Control but you know what happens there. So we decided to just watch him. He only came around one or twice a week.
Then one day he showed up and was limping badly. That did it, I broke down and fed him. He had a pretty bad cut on his back paw. Now I knew there was no going back but I told my husband and son, if his foot gets better, we'll try to find him a home. Good luck! We fed him and gave him milk and lo and behold he turned out to be one of the sweetest kitties I have ever seen, esp. for being a stray. He will even let you hold him.
We put medicine on his foot and it is improving. We are now trying to see about getting a certificate from a local cat rescue society to get him fixed so he can just hang around outside like the other orphan, Boots. It's so sad the way people discard animals. How could we turn such a sweetheart away? My husband named him Creamsicle because he is the color of and Orange Creamsicle. We call him Creamer for short. I am sure he will provide more stories as he grows big and strong.
Creamer goes to the Vet
I dread vet days. It's so stressful for the cat and their people. They seem to just know something is up even before we get the pet carrier down. Trying to get a cat in a box, when they don't want to go, can be quite a challenge and some of them take it better than others. Ringo is probably the easiest. Scooter is harder and Penny, oh my, she is no longer sweet little Penny. She morphs into a wild cat at even the site of the carrier. The only way to get her in is to "swaddle" her papoose style in a towel, but even that takes two people.
So when faced with taking little Creamer to the vet, we did not know what to expect. He had never even been in the house much less a little box and then to the vet. We were afraid he may not even show up on the morning of his appointment. We had to make two trips to get him neutered. They first had to administer his shots before making the surgery appt.
The morning of the first visit he came as usual for breakfast. He lets my husband pick him up so we were hopeful he would go in the carrier fairly easy, at least the first time. And so he did. He went right in but immediately started to cry loudly. I said "oh boy, here we go, all the way to the vet". All our cats cry non stop on the way to the vet. But after a few minutes in the car, the little fella quieted right down.
We had an hour wait at the vet and Creamer lay quietly in the carrier. We were amazed. When the vet examined him and gave him 3 shots, he did not try to scratch or bite, not even a hiss or growl. He was a real trooper! I felt so sorry for him getting all those shots in his skinny rump. He was quiet on the way home as well. We were afraid that after such treatment once home, he would run away, never to be seen again. But he seemed to bear us no ill will. He ate lunch and was as sweet and loving as ever.
A week later it was time for the big day. He had one week left to sow his wild oats. On the morning of the appointment we had to leave early and he was nowhere to be seen. I was afraid we may not be able to find him and have to cancel but after a few minutes he came looking for breakfast. I felt bad because he could not eat anything. I was once again fearful how he would react to being put in the carrier. But bless his heart, he showed no resistance other than to try to get his head back out the top. He was silent for the ride this time as well. We dropped him off and were given instructions to come back late in the afternoon to pick him up.
I could not wait to go back and get him. When I finally picked him up from the vet, he cried about three cries as if to say, "Can you please take me home?" He was so good, what a little soldier. We are considering changing his name to Soldier. What do you think, any comments are welcome. He is recovering nicely and once again bears no grudges. He is still as loving as before and is now an official member our family.
Many thanks to the Cat Protection Society for issuing affordable spay/neuter certificates!