Oliver Opines on The Great Outdoors – Friendly Fill Ins #106

FriendlyFillInsYay! Friendly Fill ins are back! This blog hop is hosted by 15andmeowing and Four Legged Fur Balls. You can join the hop or opine about your answers in our comment section.

Purrs & Head Bonks,
black and white cat Oliver

The Questions:

1.It is __________________.
2.The best part of last week was ____________________.
3.Every summer, I _________.
4.Once upon a time, _________.

My Answers:

1.It is always best when Tucker does not go out on the upstairs deck because he has fallen off it twice (The Humans have a nice pop up catio for him when he wants to venture out there.
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2.The best part of last week was my first foray of the season out to the upstairs deck (as long as The Male or Female Human are out there, the rest of us can go out if we stay off the railing.

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3.Every summer, I  have to remind the Male and Female Human that I want to join them on the upstairs deck. Good grief, how many times does a cat have to stand inside and look sad?

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4.Once upon a time, my brother and I were shelter kittens and now look at me, I’m livin’  la vida loca!
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Whisky, The Tuxedo Cat Opines

Hello Friends,

Oliver here. Recently, we learned about Tuxedo Cats and, meowza is there a lot to know! I feel a special affinity to these stately felines as I too am a black and white, although officially not considered a Tuxedo Cat.

Whisky the Tuxedo CatIn the process of doing my blog post I met a very nice Tuxedo Cat named Whisky. The Tribe of Five was interested to hear Whisky opine about his human, his life in the UK and the life of a Tuxedo Cat in general, so I set up an interview with him.  I invite you to join our conversation and we always love to hear from fellow felines and if you’re at Tuxedo, definitely give us a “meow out”.

Purrs & Head Bonks,
black and white cat Oliver

 

black and white cat Oliver
Hello Whisky, welcome to Feline Opines! My first question for you is, how did  you get your name?

 

design-1Why thank you Oliver. I got my name because my mum had never seen a cat with such long whiskers! Eventually my name (Whiskers) was shortened to Whisky and it stuck!

 

black and white cat Oliver
Your human created a fantastic graphic about adoption in my previous blog post. We love adoption stories (we shared ours with kitten photos) during Remember Me Thursday). Please tell us about  yours.

 

design-1I don’t remember much of the first few months of my life but I do remember when I was a kitten of four months, finding myself in a cold suitcase outside a cat rescue home. Thankfully, they let me in! A month later my mum and dad came to see me in there. We got on great and through my fabulous powers of purrrsuasion, I convinced them to become my humans.

black and white cat OliverAre you kitten me? Left in a suitcase? ‘Makes me wonder about some humans out there. I must say though, the humans in the UK do seem enlightened about “moggies” and we often opine on cat-topics from across the Pond. Since your humans are such fans of tea, do they serve you catnip tea?

design-1Catnip tea? What’s that? I’ve never heard of it, please tell me where I can send my humans to get some. I do have a small amount of catnip but my human mostly hides it away.

black and white cat OliverWe learned about catnip tea from a very fancy cat called Navi. Jasmine interviewed her at her Tea Party. Navi said that catnip tea is good for humans too.  I had my purrrsonal assistant check for catnip tea in the UK and she found some online. We haven’t tried it so you may want your human to do a bit more checking in your neighborhood.  Our humans are a bit stingy with our catnip as well.

On another note Whisky, tell us what is your favorite thing about your human.

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He gives me treats almost every time I meow at him, and strokes on demand too!

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black and white cat Oliver
Meowza! Sounds like you have your human trained well! So tell us, are there any other felines (or other creatures, furry, feathered or otherwise) in your house?

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Just me! They couldn’t handle more than one pet!

 

black and white cat OliverWe felines spend a lot of time keeping watch over our neighborhoods by sitting in the window. What do you see when  you look our your windows and what’s your favorite thing to watch outside?

 

design-1I love watching birds, they get me so excited! Sometimes a big black cat comes and meows at me through the window and we have a chat together too.

 

black and white cat OliverYep, birds and squirrels are our fave as well. Other cats, not so much. Our big Alpha, Tucker does not like any cats on our front porch and, if they are brazen enough to come up to the door, Tucker might just leave a present for our humans when they get home (unwrapped, if you get my drift). That brings another question to mind, are you an indoor or an outdoor kitty?

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I am an indoor cat. In summer, when my humans are gardening, they let me outside for a little while so long as they can see me.

 

black and white cat Oliver
That’s good that your humans watch over you when you’re outside with them. What do they do to keep you safe?

 

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They never let me out without supervision. They say it’s dangerous because there is a busy road not far away. I wish they’d chill out a bit!

 

black and white cat OliverWe feel the same here, the female human especially is nervous (granted, I did a header down the stairs when I was a kitten) and Tucker has fallen off the upstairs balcony twice. This has caused the female human to be over protective and now we’re not allowed outside anywhere unless we’re in our portable catio. Actually, it’s pretty cool but don’t tell our humans I said so.

We did notice that on your wonderful website about Tuxedos, there isn’t any information about you. Are  you considering lobbying your human for a little more exposure as you are clearly the spokespurrson for the Tuxedo Cat website.

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Good idea! My human really underappreciates the work I’ve put into the website, it’s about time I got some more recognition. I’ll have words!

black and white cat Oliver
We noticed that your human is involved in awarding an Animal Welfare & Veterinary Scholarship. That’s pawsome! How did this come about?

 

design-1Ah, that was one of his stupid ideas that never worked.  He’s probably forgotten about it. I think he hoped to use it to get in touch with a few veterinary students who may be interested in coming on as writers, but he had no applications. Oh well!

black and white cat OliverHah, hah. Our human has also had some less than stellar ideas but what are you going to do. If we had opposable thumbs, we could just go to the site and erase all their “faux paws”.  That brings to mind another question, how did your human become so interested in Tuxedo Cats?

 

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Through me, of course! I’m the first cat (of any kind) he’s ever had and, I guess I made a great impression!

 

black and white cat OliverWell, he certainly has become informed about Tuxedo cats and a great advocate for them. Your inspiration has resulted in amazing work.  Have  you ever watched Henri, le Chat Noir’s videos? He’s a famous Tuxedo cat.

 

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I just watched one now, what a magnificent creature, very good looking, so wise and cultured…much like myself!

 

black and white cat OliverWell my friend, this interview has gone quite long and you’re looking a bit tired.  It’s been great fun. Thanks so much for purrticipating  and please thank your human for all his hard work on behalf of Tuxedo Cats! Oh wait, it appears that we’ve gone overtime and into Whisky’s nap time. We’ll just wish him and his humans well and quietly, oh so quietly end this interview.
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Funny Farmer Felines Interview

unnamedHello Friends Furry and Otherwise,
Tucker here. The Tribe of Five is honored to be interviewed by the Funny Farmer Felines.  We had a great time. Hop on over and learn a little more about each of us.

Thank you Funny Farmer Felines:
Your Friend,
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So, You’re Visiting Our Humans…

allguestsapproved

Tucker Opines

cross eyed Siamese catTucker here. The home of the Tribe of Five has been the destination for a number of visitors this year. We normally live a fairly quiet life, doing what we want, when we want, pretty much where we want. The arrival of human visitors always puts a bit of a crimp in our lifestyle.

There are a number of pre-guest things that happen in our house that we felines find objectionable. There is the copious use of the vacuum monster, the aggressive mop and the fact that some spaces, normally available to us are suddenly restricted.

The female human is a bit obsessive about cleaning  and boy does she ramp up when people are coming to stay at our house. There’s a lot of toothbrush around the moldings, edges of the shower, etc. Really, in all my thirteen  years, I have never seen a visiting human bend down to inspect the moldings in our house. I think the female human needs to chill.

This flurry of activity is the first indication that guests will be arriving.  And then comes phase two, the guests arrive!

Each member of the Tribe of Five have certain requests of any interlopers….errr…guests that come to our home.

First, please remember that there are specific areas we have designated as our own personal rest spots. For me, it’s on top of the down cushion on the big red chair. When  sitting in my chair, please do not lean too hard against the cushion in order not to disturb me.

You may want to bring your own personal sticky, roller thing. Although the female human has many around the house…in a house of five felines cat hair is the gift that keeps on giving.

Please be respectful of our schedule. The male human prepares our wet food dinner at approximately 4:00pm each day. If you have plans for the humans, I ask that you honor our dinner schedule. What you do after that is of no consequence to us.

Alberto Opines

Siamese Cat Sitting on suitcaseAlberto here. The humans have this wonderful room with a big, comfy bed, lots of soft quilts and a perfect view of the trees,  waterfall and forest below. This is one of my favorite nap places. When you arrive, the humans will escort you to this room, and then tell you that it is perfectly fine for you to keep the door closed. Do not believe them. It is not perfectly fine; it is in fact, quite rude in my estimation.

How am I supposed to get a nap when you shut my only access to this wonderful place? You visiting humans bring interesting smells on your shoes and luggage and we felines need a chance to come in and do a thorough sniffing observation. How can we know where you’ve been and what animals you have petted when you deny us access to this room?

When you sleep, it is particularly nice for us to be able to come in and walk across your face and sit on your chest so please, when our humans say, “You’ll probably want to keep the bedroom door closed” accept this for the lie that it is.

Oliver Opines

black and white cat with a heart over his eyeOliver here. When Alberto and I were first brought to our home as fosters, we were very tiny and the humans used the large guest bathroom as our nursery.  This is why I have a purrrticular fondness for this room.

In addition, the female human has the room decorated in black and white and I feel that it shows off my own beautiful coloring to it’s best advantage (and, if I sit very still, it works as fairly good camouflage).

One of my favorite games is “sneak in the bathroom, hide in the shower and then jump out” when the guest humans are sitting on the white, throne thing. I derive great delight in this although I must confess, some of the guest humans let out little scream sounds and act like they’re upset. Really, have you seen me? I’m a cute little guy with a black heart over my eye, how scary can I be?

The humans will use the same line regarding the guest bathroom door as they do with the guest bedroom door, giving guest humans full purrrmission to lock us out. Do not believe their lies. And for those guest humans who do choose to keep the door closed. Alberto and I will position ourselves in front of it and wait for you to come out so we can rush in.

Lily Opines

cat in windowLily here. I am extremely shy and human guests send me into a state of absolute terror. If you want to start out on the right paw with me, I BEG you, do NOT ring the doorbell! A soft knock on the door freaks me out as it is, but the horrible door bell will send me down the stairs in a panic and you may never see me again during your stay.

Because I am a scaredy-cat and none too sociable, I will probably remain downstairs during the length of your stay. If you insist on coming downstairs into my territory, I ask you to be extremely careful before you sit on the sofa.  That lump you see under the couch cover is probably me.

If you go into the female human’s office downstairs, please observe the rules. It is expected that I will accompany you but none of the other felines are allowed. This is a contract I have had with the human for quite a while. It works well for us and I expect you to honor it.

Some of us are referred to as “darters” and when the humans tell you to make sure we don’t get out, they are very serious. We live in a woodsy area and there are a number of woodland creatures who show up and stare into the downstairs sliders.  The upstairs deck is not so safe either. Tucker has fallen off the balcony twice into the ravine and Oliver launched himself downstairs when he was just a kitten. If you want our company outside, the humans will show you where they keep the pop up tent catio that allows us to be outside and stay safe.

If you are going to sit on a stool at the counter, you may not want to leave any meat items you are eating unattended. This goes for glasses of water as well. We probably won’t drink it but there’s a good chance it will end up on the floor.

Finally, when the female human does her nightly feeding of the mama raccoon, house rules state that I am to have a little of the cat food she gives them. It’s our little ritual.

That about covers it but remember, you may go your entire stay without ever meeting me.

Jasmine Opines

Siamese cat on fur throwI am the “invisible” feline, Tucker’s 13-year old sister who was bullied severely and now lives in the human’s bedroom . The female human wrote about this.  I am happy to say, things are progressing. Since the kittens Alberto and Oliver came to live with us, they visit me regularly. Lily comes in for a while every evening and the female human takes me for regular visits to the rest of the house. She says that one of her happiest days will be when the bedroom door is open and I roam the house again.

My tips are simple, please don’t ask to meet me, it might freak me out. Please don’t keep my humans up too late as bedtime is “me” time with my humans.

I am the least affected by company but I do know how much the humans enjoy those who come to visit so I say, come and visit, enjoy the view from the guest room and be sure and bring light colors and clothes that cat hair won’t cling to. And for heaven’s sake, leave your canines at home!

P.S. Don’t forget to check your luggage before you leave, Alberto is fast, sneaky and loves to hide in suitcases.

Our Very Own Catio-Part 1

Hello All,
1212010 003Tucker here. I am writing to tell you about the human’s latest attempt to enrich our lives and make us happy.  This weekend, a long box arrived which contained a catio.

I must go on record here, I do not think a catio is necessary for some of us. I am the Alpha in the Tribe of Five and have done supervised outdoor excursions just fine. Just because there were two little falling off the upstairs balcony incidents, does not mean that I need a catio to enjoy the great out of doors. And just because little Oliver went flying over the short wall in the living room to land downstairs does not necessarily mean that he needs a catio. (Well, maybe Oliver could use one but for those of us who are older and wiser, no catio is needed).

catio1But I digress. The humans opened the box. I sat on my favorite chair and supervised while Oliver and Alberto raced over to check things out. Those kittens are very “paws on” when it comes to a project.   As the humans attempted to extract the items from the box, the kittens carefully inspected everything.catio3

catio4The first thing we noticed was that the humans had received a box in a box, very cool and very thoughtful of the humans to order extra boxes!  This is a photo of the second box., which contained the catio item. Evidently the catio is called “Happy Habitat”, I’ll be the judge as to whether a tent is happy or a habitat. Frankly, I cannot see me squeezing all of my 16 pounds into anything small enough to fit in that box!

 

catio5The humans extracted a long bag from the second box. As you can see, Alberto is a bit perplexed as to how this can be happy or a habitat. Look at that long skinny bag, even the svelte and lanky Alberto would be hard pressed to fit into it. Humans, you may have wasted your money!

But then something interesting happened. The humans pulled a big black net-thing from that long skinny bag. Oliver was there catio6to inspect every inch of it and to help. of course.

 

The humans spent considerable time reading the paper that was sewn into the black bag. They pulled and tugged and mumbled  and then all of a sudden that flat, netting thing popped up into a big tent. The humans were rethinking their plan of setting up the Happy Habitat in the house. I must say, I was impressed that something that big came out of that skinny black bag!

The female human unzipped the door in the front and the kittens wasted no time in running in and inspecting the inside of the apparatus. They were quite intrigued and gave catio7it a paws up.  The humans then set themselves the task of removing the kittens and learning how to collapse the tent and fit it back in the skinny black bag. Although I love the humans, I have to say they were a bit slow in figuring it out. Finally, they saw the two (clearly marked with orange) tags where they were supposed to squeeze, when they squeezed, the whole thing folded up and all they had to do was wrap the netting around it to get it back in the narrow black bag.

Once the humans were confident in their ability to open and close the Happy Habitat. they took it out on the upstairs deck and popped it open. They then unzipped the door and invited us all to enter. Oliver and Al wasted no time in heading in and Lily joined them as well. I, on the other hand, had no interest in being in a tent with those three so I sauntered away back into the house.

Our upstairs deck isn’t tiny and that tent took up a lot of space which did make it roomy enough for three felines. I heard the human saying something about putting a bed and a carpet covered perch in there. Now, if they say they’ll be filling the habitat with snacks, I just might be persuaded to check it out.

This is the end of my first report, stay tuned for more and here’s a short video of Alberto, Oliver and Lily enjoying the great outdoors on our upstairs deck. Evidently the humans also ordered some sort of net tunnel that connects to the Habitat (like I’m going to squeeze myself through a tunnel, I think not!)

Until next time, your friend,
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True Adventures of A Flying Kitten

FlyingOliver

Hello Folks,
Oliver here.  This is my debut posting and I might have been forced to wait a bit longer had it not been for my amazing flying adventure this weekend.

Before I tell you my story, I must insist that you do not judge my humans. They watch over us like a nervous mother (especially the female human).  Only recently, have we been allowed more time to roam the house and freedom from our room but as all cat mothers and many human mothers understand, kittens can move at the speed of sound and keeping us out of trouble is a full time job.

However, I digress….back to my adventure. It was Saturday afternoon and my brother Alberto (also known as Al) was enjoying our freedom. We raced down the hall and chased the evil red dot. We snuck up behind the older cats and softly whacked their tails; we opened cupboards and drawers and had a wonderful time.

There is one place that the female human does not like us to play. There is a short wall in the place the humans refer to as the “living room” (frankly, I find this term silly, don’t they live in all the rooms?). This short wall is above the stairs and along this wall is a wooden railing that is a wonderful place for cats to pussyfoot along.  All we have to do to get the female human in a tiz is jump on the sofa and leap up onto the railing.  The male human is always telling the female human to calm down and then she reminds him of the two times our Boss Cat, Tucker, sailed over the upstairs balcony (that’s another great story but one I will not tell here).

So Al and I were zipping around and the female human was in the room of food (she calls it kitchen but that’s a dumb name because all the food comes from there) and the male human was on the sofa reading his square, flat device. One moment I was sailing toward the railing and the next moment I found myself downstairs.

I hightailed it behind the downstairs sofa seeking solitude to contemplate this recent turn of events. I heard the flap, flap of feet running down the stairs and when I looked up, the female human was on the floor beside the sofa.  The male human arrived soon and they had a bit of back and forth.

“Don’t touch him, he might be hurt.”

“I need to touch him to make sure he’s not hurt and, if he is we need to get him to the vet.”

The female human finally won the argument (this happens quite often) and I felt hands gently moving me from behind the sofa and into her arms. She touched me all over, whispering comforting soft words and kissing my head.  Then she scampered upstairs with the speed of a kitten and returned with some lovely smelling, stinky cat food. I gobbled up the offering she extended on her index finger and there was a collective human sigh of happiness.

Very soon, I was stretching, jumping on my brother Al and begging for some more of that wonderful stinky stuff.  The male human took a measurement of the distance I flew and pronounced it as fourteen feet (although I’m not sure if he’s talking about human feet or kitten feet). Either way, it was quite the adventure, but not one I care to repeat.

Until next time, this is Oliver signing off…..up, up and away!

P.S. Below are photos of the area where I began my first flight training.