About Feline Opines

Writer, entrepreneur and lover of felines (and all furry creatures). You can learn more about me and my connection with felines in my story, All My Children Wear Fur Coats, In the 2016) issuer of Chicken Soup For the Cat Lover's Soul, My Very Good, Very Bad Cat. Feline Opines was awarded a Muse Medallion in 2018 from The Cat Writer's Association. The Felines have a book called "Felines Opine on God" available at Amazon & Barnes and Noble and a cozy mystery will be released soon.

Lily Opines About Her Basepaws DNA Results

cat basepaws dna results

Hello There Furiends,
Before I get into the good stuff, I have to provide a thing you humans call a “disclosure” about my interaction with the Basepaws company. We were provides with a complimentary Basepaws kit in exchange for my opinion of the process and the product. All of the included images, the written content and the opinions are original and from Feline Opines. Although I’ve linked to the company these are not affiliate links and Feline Opines receives no commission or monetary gain from purchases. I just like to tell my furiends about new, cool stuff. 

Test Information

Lily_Kitten

This is me at the shelter the day I met The Female Human. – Lily

And now for the moment you’ve been waiting for…..my report!

Basepaws divides purebred felines in to three different breed groups:

  • Western (American Shorthair, Persian, Siberian, British Shorthair, Maine Coon, Russian Blue, Norwegian Forest Cat, Abyssinian, Exotic Shorthair, Turkish Angora and Ragdoll)
  • Eastern (Oriental Shorthair, Burmese, Birman & Siamese)
  • Hybrid (Cats that are the result of mating between a domestic cat and a wild cat. These breeds include the Bengal (Asian Leopard + domestic) and the Savannah breeds (Serval + domestic)

The fourth feline group is the Polycat group which describes mixed breed cats, 95% of all cats in the world are mixed breed felines. Before Basepaws DNA testing we knew nothing about them and now, as they add more purebred data and trait information they will be able to begin narrowing down the parts of the genome that are responsible for certain traits.

The Western, Eastern and Hybrid groups are based on the DNA of purebred cats in their database. As the company grows and adds more DNA they will be able to narrow down the specific genomic regions .  I was assigned to the  Western Breed Group. Now this does’t mean that I necessarily have “prebred” relatives. It means that the certain genomic regions are the ones that I am most similar to and they ranked me with three breeds by how similar I am to a specific breed and the rest of the database.

The “Sciency” Stuff

First of all neither the Female Human nor I are very scientific so I’m going to try and make this as simple as possible.  If you have an inquiring mind and enjoy science, you might want to check out this information (even though it’s from The National Human Genome Research Institute.

The Basepaws folks sequenced my DNA and it resulted in 8,626,137 DNA fragments that were sequenced and that represents 1,089,039,875 DNA bases that were sequenced (these numbers are a little big for this simple feline to understand). Using that data in addition to the latest cat genome (felis_catus_9.01 – felis catus is a fancy word for “domestic cat”). They analyzed genetic variants across 18 chromosomes to generate my report.

Phew, not that the “sciency” stuff is over let’s dig in to the really interesting stuff.

Let’s Talk About Me

I was assigned to the Western Breed Group and here are the three breeds I am most similar to:

Norwegian Forest Cat
Norwegian Forest Cat

Meowza! I’m like a breed that is believed to be 1-000-2,000 years old. My DNA ancestors originated in Norway (now I know why I like the winters here). Norwegian Forest Cats are generally healthy and strong but also more prone to Diabetes mellitus (a metabolic disorder where blood sugar levels remain high for long periods of time. This is something my veterinarian can watch out for on my yearly wellness visits. The purrsonality traits of this breed makes them friendly, social and independent. I’m friendly with people I know and just like this breed, I am friendly on my own terms. I’m not so social but I’m very independent! They have favorite humans (that is so true) and tend to be picky about whose lap they sit in (me again). The Norwegian Forest Cat in me is where I get my love of climbing and The Female Human has great climbing alternatives for me in high places to satisfy the Forest Cat DNA in me.

American Shorthair

American Shorthair breed

This part of my DNA is responsible for my stellar hunting skills. I don’t have the large head, powerful jaws and full cheeks like most American Shorthairs. American Shorthairs have a variety of coat colors. That’s definitely me! And their eyes are large and distinctive. Me again. The American Shorthair DNA in me may make me affected by hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. There is also sometimes a problem with dermoid cysts, and some facial issues like cleft palate but thankfully, I don’t have any of these problems.  As far as purrsonality is concerned, the fact that they aren’t known as lap cats is me to a T. They appreciate a spot near their humans on the sofa and that is really me. I’m called “Lily Bug” because I always snuggle against humans when they sit on the sofa (my version of being a love bug). Another purrsonality trait that is all me is that I am fine on my own and can entertain myself. I do love to find a good sun puddle and hang there all day, another indication that I have much in common with the American Shorthair.

Siberian

Siberian Forest Cat

Also called The Siberian Forest Cat. I don’t have the plush long coat of these guys. This is the national animal of Russia, cool. I think this must be where I got my crazy coat because the coats for these cats range from tabby, solid, tortoiseshell and color point. To get one of these breed kittens will cost  you a lot of moola and that’s why they’re rare outside of Europe. I hope The Female Human appreciates me for the rare treasure I am. There are no documented known health conditions that plague this breed so that makes me feel good. It is interesting that Siberian Forest Cats are considered to be a hypoallergenic breed because they produce less FelD1 that is the allergen thought to be the culprit in causing allergic reactions in humans. I think I fit the personality description to a T, brave, independent, easygoing and affectionate.

And I’m Wild

My favorite part of the report is that it said the wild cat I was most similar to is the leopard. Pretty cool huh?

And Now The Contest & Winner

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Thanks to all of you who purrticipated in my Basepaws DNA contest. The #1 breed guess was Siamese with American Shorthair coming in second. There were many others, Tortiseshell, Birman, Burmese, Main Coon, Persian, Turkish Van, Calico, Tonkinese, Snowshoe and Exotic.

Unfortunately, no one got all three but don’t feel bad, The Female Human didn’t pick even one of the breeds. We put all the names in a basket and I batted them around for a while before I had The Female Human pick one out (with her eyes closed, of course) and the winner is…….messymimimeanderings! Please let us know the address to send the books and they’ll be on their way to you. You can use the form below to send the info.

 

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Well, I hope you enjoyed my report. If you have your humans do your DNA, let us know about your results.
Sig_Lily

 

 

 

 

Tucker Opines on His Childhood And Other Important Things-Friendly Fill Ins #155

Hello There Furiends,
Tucker here. It’s been a while since The Tribe of Five has purrticipated in the Friendly Fill Ins. Things have been a bit stressful for our Purrsonal Assistant and she’s been overwhelmed. Still, we felines love to (and need to) opine so I urged her to let me do this week’s questions and here we are!

I have noted the questions for the week and encourage you all to opine, either as part of the blog hop hosted by 15andMeowing and Four-Legged Furballs or, just meow about your answers in the comment sections of this post.

I hope you all are having a wonderful spring, it’s almost time for The Female Human to break out the catio!
Sig_Tucker

This Week’s Questions:

1. 13 years ago, I __________________.
2. By this time next year, I hope to ________________________.
3. One word that describes me is _________.
4. If my life were a book or movie, it would be in the _________ genre.
My answers:
1. 13 years ago, I was still working as a tutor for the high school and my niece was still living with us ( she did until 2011).  I knew nothing about cat blogs back then, I sure missed out on a lot.
2. By this time next year, I hope to still have all my loved ones ( 2-legged and 4-legged). I know this is not likely being that KaTwo has mammary cancer and Millie is shrinking away despite his big appetite and his thyroid meds.
3. One word that describes me is quirky I asked my mom what she thought and she said “weird”. I asked my hubby and he answered, compassionate. I like his answer.
4. If my life were a book or movie, it would be in the comedy genre.

And here are my answers:

1. 13 years ago, I was stuffed in  a carrier in the back of the SUV with my sister Jasmine and Angel Miss P and Angel Buster. We were moving from California to Northern Idaho and I love it here (but I was NOT fond of the long drive!). Lots of wildlife to watch, lots of windows and a nice fireplace when it’s winter. This photo is Jasmine and I experiencing our first spring in Idaho (we stayed inside our first winter).

TukJaz_FirstWinter

Hey Tucker, this grass is wet and smells funny. Forget about the grass Jasmine, what the &%##@ is that white stuff?

2. By this time next year, I hope to be sitting on the ledge of the upstairs deck and sunning myself but in light of my previous falls from the upstairs balcony into the ravine below and getting lost in my own neighborhood,I’ve come to the conclusion supervised front porch sitting is safer.

TukFrontPorch

“Sitting on the front porch under human supervision is much safer than sitting on the railing of the upstairs deck.” – Tucker

3. One word that describes me is cute. Come on, admit it, not bad for a 16-year old feline.

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4. If my life were a book or movie, it would be in the  comedy   genre.

 

TukOnTable

“This is me doing my impression of a table decoration.” – Tucker

https://www.linkytools.com/basic_linky_include.aspx?id=292250

Walk Through The Web Wednesday 5/1

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hello There Furiends,
That saying you humans like to meow about that “April showers bring May flowers” is proving to be true. There are tulips beginning to pop up in the garden and there should be some nice color if the deer don’t eat them first.

final-20Oliver tried to convince me that he sat in our felted bed this way because it was getting too warm to sleep inside it. I told Oliver I thought his expanding girth was proving to be too much to fit into the bed. Oliver was not amused.

 

 

 

I hope you enjoy my web wanderings this week.
Purrs & Head Bonks,
Alberto
Siamese cat with blue eyes

Swedish Digital Vet Is Going After the UK’s Cats (and Dogs)

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Oliver and one of our favorite vets, Dr. Christina Ponsness at Pend Oreille Veterinary Service

A Swedish digtal vet clinic, First Vet is launching in the UK. The company offers video appointments  between 20-30UK ($26.00-$39.00) where the average vet visit is about 60UK ($78.00)

So, not only do the humans get to save some money but the felines are relieved of the stress of being shoved in a carrier and taken in the moving metal machine to the place of the stabby people.

First Vet’s study of their business in Sweden has found that roughly half of all cases that result in a visit to the vet could be taken care of by a remote consultation.

This sounds pretty good to me, what do my feline and human furiends think about this?

CatCon Partners With Cats Of Instagram To Celebrate The Internet’s Greatest Cat Videos

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Have you watched Oliver’s film,, “Bring Me My Catpuccino!”

CatCon, “the ComicCon for cat people” has joined with Instagram’s to showcase most-followed cat accounts to celebrate the internet’s greatest cat videos.

If you and your humans are lucky enough to get to Cat Con at  the  Pasadena Convention Center in California, you can mingle with 62,000 other international feline fans.

The Cats Of Instagram account — which has 10.3 million followers and features a running tab of adorable cat pics and videos — will be hosting the inaugural CatCon Video Festival. And all my furiends can submit their own videos (we submitted two of ours, “Bring Me My Catpuccino” and “You Never Walk Alone”.   A grand prize winner will receive a $500 gift card.

“Cats of Instagram has been part of CatCon since the beginning in 2015, and it made purr-fect sense to up the ante this year and partner with them on CatCon Video Fest,” CatCon creator Susan Michals said in a statement. “Together we plan to bring the audience at CatCon 2019 the best vids from across the country, IRL on the big screen.” Meow, sure wish we could go there!

Teen cat whisperer recognized for clocking nearly 1,900 hours of dedication to feline friends

CatWhisperer

The next time you humans start meowing about how bad kids are today, you need to remember 15-year old Blake Austin. Blake has clocked nearly 1,900 hours of playtime with the felines at the Brunswick Midcoast Humane society. She also fosters kittens. Her dad has a severe cat allergy so she never got to have a cat when she was growing up until her father realized how much cats meant to her and made her a “cats only” room. Blake’s love of cats and her tireless devotion to the felines at her shelter has garnered her much notice and she even received a $10,000.00 gift. Meowza, being nice to kitties pays off-literally!

Cat adopts four orphaned squirrels

CatSquirrel

This one’s for all you may-saying humans who think we felines don’t have a heart.. Pusha, the cat who lives in a park in Bakhchisaray, Crimea. She came across four young squirrels who’d lost their parents, and rather ignoring them or attacking them, she took care of them and even let the squirrels drink her milk as if they were her own kittens.

The squirrels seem quite happy with this family arrangement. Pusha treats them like her own, cleaning them and giving them a gentle nudge when they’re misbehaving.

Brace yourselves, cat lovers. Meow DC is a new festival for feline fanatics.

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Coco the Couture Cat letting her love child side out at Blogpaws 2016.

Emily Miller, director of special events for the Humane Rescue Alliance, decided to create Meow DC, an annual festival for feline fanatics —where ticket proceeds will go toward the alliance’s mission of helping homeless pets.

“Meow DC is a place for cat people to get together and celebrate all things cat.”

More than 100 adoptable cats were brought to the Dock 5 parking lot because the venue doesn’t allow cats indoors. The specialized RVs had big windows that allow people to see the cats from outside.

Booths just outside the venue’s entrance will house Meow DC’s two celebrity cats — Sunglass Cat and Coco the Couture Cat. An Instagram star with over half a million followers, Sunglass Cat will be taking pictures with fans for $15, which will go to the alliance. Coco, a Cornish Rex who gets around in a pink “Catillac,” will be paw-tographing copies of the book “The Adventures of Coco le Chat: The World’s Most Fashionable Feline.” (Note, The Female Human has met Coco the Couture Cat many times and will see her and her human again at the Cat Writer’s Association conference.)

There were events for kiddos who love cats and lots of vendors who offered purrfect feline products.

 

 

 

It’s a Contest!

Now that we’ve received my DNA results, I’ve decided we should run a little contest before the big reveal. There is lots of interesting (and sometimes surprising ) info in this report. One of the things the report includes is which breeds I am most similar to. Three breeds were listed. Can you guess what they were?

I am running a contest this week (with The Female Human’s help). Just share this post and then note in the comments what 3 breeds you think the basepaws, cat DNA company discovered I am most similar to. The winner with the correct (or most correct) answer will receive our two Felines Opine books (personally pawtographed of course).

So guess away, let’s see who who knows the most about my DNA. The contest will close at midnight (PST), Sunday, May 5th.

Purrrs &. Head Bonks,

Walk Through The Web Wednesday 4/24

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hello There Furiends!

final-18

“Far be it from me to rush you Human but I sure would appreciate a little stroll outside!” -Alberto

Spring has sprung….finally! The Tribe of Five is waiting for The Female Human to get that pop up catio out of the garage and let us out into the fresh air.  She does seem to be taking her sweet time though and I’m getting a bit impatient. Humans, they never seem to have their priorities together!

But at least our Purrsonal Assistant understands the priority of bringing you the best of the worldwide-web in feline news on Wednesday.

 

Purrs & Head Bonks,
Siamese cat with blue eyes

Cats are actually nice, scientists find

final-19

“Cats purrfer hanging out with their humans over eating? I’ll have to think about that.” -Oliver

Well twist my whiskers, it took a bunch of scientists to figure out that we felines are nice? The way you humans spend your time really amazes me. The research from Oregon State University, published in Behavioural Processes, tells us there is scientific evidence that cats are nice. In fact, the study found, cats like interacting with humans more than they like eating food. Now this bit I may not agree with, if you look at Oliver, you may find this statement a bit questionable.

Here’s an idea for those scientists, go to your local shelter and adopt a cat and  you’ll see how nice we are!

 

 

 

Cat’s Attorney Takes on City Hall in Lawsuit

tabby sues city of Bellevue and King County

 

Miska, the Tabby has a rap sheet longer than her tail and now, her humans have intervened on behalf of the Bellevue, WA feline and they are suing the city and King County. They feel she was unfairly targeted calling her citations, “egregious and outrageous”.

The feline’s attorney cites bias and unfair practices against Miska, noting she has received 30 of the 50 infractions doled out by King County Animal Control in the last decade.  The attorney said, “I’ve never seen a city or a county so hell bent on going after a poor, defenseless cat,”

Regardless of where you stand on this legal kerfuffle, you have to agree, it’s about time felines stood up for injustice! Does anyone know where I can find a feline lawyer, I may need one in the future.

Feline Dino Cut Takes Instagram By Storm

dino cat cat grooming trend

People…PULLLEEEZE don’t do this. You humans shove us in costumes, cutesy collars ad bows and if that isn’t enough humiliation, now you want to to cut our gorgeous fur and make us look like some sort of prehistoric throwback? To those who are contemplating doing this to your cat, please look at the faces of the felines in this article. If looks could kill……

True Love Between Neighbor Felines Tugs at The Heart Strings

LoveStory

Queue the violins, this is a feline love story that has taken Twitter by storm. Two cats, staring at each other from across the courtyard fall in love and, with a little help from their humans, the love story moves forward. Simon and Theo are a happy couple and this story has a fairy tale ending.

 

8 Best Cat Breeds For First-Time Owners

BestCatBreeds

For those of you who’ve never had the joy of sharing your life with a feline and who are wondering just what type of feline you’d like to live with, here’s some help.

The first thing you humans need to understand is that felines, like humans, have different purrsonality traits. But there are traits that some breeds have in common.

And don’t think you have to go to a breeder to find certain types of cats. Every one of the Tribe of Five is a shelter/rescue cat and each one of us have some Siamese in our blood. The Female Human loves how intelligent we are, how social, curious and loyal we are as well. Each of us has our own quirks but we do fit the “Siamese” profile very well. So get out there and find the cat that best suits you and your lifestyle.