Walk Through The Web Wednesday 9/5

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hi There Furiends,
Fall has arrived here in the Inland Northwest. Our summer was waaaaay too short, we had so much smoke we were stuck inside for most of the time.  Ah well, if the weather says nice I still may get some kayak training with The Female Human!

Here are my finds for the week, enjoy!
Purrs & Head Bonks,
Siamese cat with blue eyes

A Cats Only Grooming Salon – Pilot Online

cat being washed at cat salon

Prepare to have all your cat grooming stereotypes blown away! There is a feline only grooming salon in Yorktown, VA.  The owners of Purricious Styles  say that cats are not as adverse to water as you humans may think (and of course, I wholeheartedly agree). What I do take exception to is that they also state they have special equipment like muzzle cones for “snippy cats”. Muzzles, snippy cats?? Hmmm. If your feline in residence is looking for a new do and you live in the area, you might want to call Purricious Styles 
and see about getting kitty a lion or teddy bear clip. As for me, I’ll just leave my handsome fur the way it is.

Headed to the Vet? Calm Your Cat With a New Feline Radio Station- Mental Floss

Siamese cat listens to music

We felines are not so fond of being shoved in a box, dumped in the metal moving machine and being taken to the place with white coats. I don’t know about the rest of you but all the members of The Tribe of Five loudly sing the song of their people all the way. If we’re singing anyway yu might as well turn on the radio to Calm Pet Radio. It not only provides music but it calms us down as well.

Cat Calm Radio plays music by David Teie, a composer who writes music targeted at cats’ preferences. His songs feature sounds that will be familiar and soothing to cats, like beats similar to the sound of suckling milk, played at the frequencies cats use to communicate with each other. Researchers have found that cats respond better to his cat-specific tunes than to human music. We didn’t need researchers to tell us this. The Female Human purchased the first album from Davied Teje called Music for Cats and we like it very much.

The online cat music station was launched in honor of National Take Your Cat to the Vet Day on August 22. “We’re one of the only radio stations to play species-specific music, designed to have a calming effect on your cat in the car, especially on trips to the vet,” the website explains. You can listen online here.  We opined about this music on our website FelineOpines.com and you can even see videos of our first experiences with our favorite mewsic.

The Best Cosplaying Cats of All Time – Gamebyte

cosplay black and white cat

If any of you are wondering, “What the heck is cosplay and what does it have to do with cats?” , allow me to explain. Cosplay is a strange hobby that many humans don’t want to admit they are involved in.  The short definition (according to Wickipedia) is, ” a contraction of the words costume play, is a performance art in which participants called cosplayers wear self-made costumes and fashion accessories to represent a specific character.” Okay, I’m fine with humans putting on silly costumes but when you take your feline and stuff him or her into a ridiculous costume and then take photos for all the world to see, well that’s another matter completely! 

I must admit that most of the cosplay cats in this article look pretty proud of themselves, but in case my Humans get any great ideas, thanks but no thanks, The Tribe of Five have taken a vote and it was a unanimous NO to cosplay and costumes of any sort.

This Collection Turns Your Existing Furniture Into a Cat Tree – Apartment Therapy

black cat on cat furniture

The Female Human is always griping about how scroungy our existing cat furniture looks, how expensive new cat trees are, blah, blah,blah. Well now some smart humans have come up with a way to turn existing furniture in cat furniture!

Often cat furniture is bulky, ugly and can’t fit into smaller spaces. Even though we felines love to sleep on your stuff (your bed, your computer keyboard, your face….) we still need a place of our own.  The folks at Catssup have come up with some purrfect feline furniture designs. Now you don’t have to buy a new piece of furniture, you transform your existing furniture into cat friendly furniture!  The people at Catssup say it’s space saving, easy to install and integrates easily into any human home.  This is what the designers of Catssup say about their furniture, “”Instinctively, cats are more comfortable with heights because it provides them with a secure vantage point to survey the world below. Unfortunately, many modern households are unable to provide vertical spaces due to limited interior space and the bulkiness of conventional cat trees.”. Well, I say tell your humans to get out their credit card and head over to Catssup right away!

These Cat Face Towels Will Make Washing Off Your Makeup WAY More Fun – Bustle

cat face towel with ginger cat face

If your female human spends every night washing off the stuff she put on her face in the morning, you may want to point her in the direction of these towels. Once again, our friends across the pond, who are always ahead of the game when it comes to felines, have created these fun face towels (or wash clothes as we call them in the good old U.S. of A.) These  Cat Face Towels from Firebox  are the cat’s meow for your bathroom.

kitty-coin-bank_29845Firebox is an online retailer based in London that offers all kinds of  unusual gifts, home decor, techie gadgets, food, and drink. There are quite a few fun things for cat lovers, Pusheen slippers, cat mugs and even a wonderful kitty coin bank where you can drop your savings to use to buy something special for your feline.

Oliver Opines on Friendly Fill Ins Week 111

Hello  Furiends,
Oliver here. I’m doing the fill ins this week and I hope you like my answers. You can join this blog hop by going to visit one of the hosts, our furiends 15andmeowing or the good folks at our-Legged Furballs. You’re always welcome to opine about your answers in the “opining” section (comments) of this blog post.

Have a wonderful Independence Day!
Purrs & Head Bonks,
black and white cat Oliver

The Fill In Questions:

1. Fireworks ______________________.
2. My favorite 4th of July picnic food is _____________________.
3. I begin every day with _________.
4. _________ is the best thing since sliced bread.

My Answers:

1. Fireworks  are a tool of the devil.  Neither I nor any of the Tribe of Five like them. I run and hide when I hear them.
black and white cxat hiding under red and white rug
2. My favorite 4th of July picnic food is anything with beef in it; hamburger, hot dogs, you name it, I love beef and I rarely get any people food but it doesn’t stop me from hanging around when the Male Human is cooking meat on the upstairs grill. Note that I am presenting my cutest begging pose while keeping a close eye on the Male Human while he cooks.
img_1937
3. I begin every day with a little bonding time with the Humans. They always say good morning, feed us our soft food breakfast and give us attention before they leave for that place they call “work”. I have no idea what that place is and we felines do not have the word “work” in our vocabulary.
img_1938
4. Celebrating our country’s birthday is the best thing since sliced bread.
I am quite a purratriotic feline and even ran for Purresident! You can read about it on our website.  Will I run again in 2020? Only time will tell.

black and white kitten runs for president

The Felines Opine On 2016

tukcrownTucker Opines

Well, I must say, 2016 was fairly much like 2015. I retained my lofty position on the red chair in the living room, received treats regularly and even strolled (under human supervision) on the upstairs deck.

The “little guys” as we call them continued to be annoying and always  up to  some kitten shenanigans  but they do recognize my authority as the Alpha of The Tribe of Five and now that they’re just over a year, they are settling down a bit.

And they are making themselves useful. Oliver has decided he likes my prescription food and this is quite convenient for me.. Each morning, when the female human comes out of the bedroom, Oliver races down the hallway and does a little dance by the food bowl. The female human obediently goes to the pantry in the laundry room, grabs the food and fills both of our bowls. Having Oliver around is never having to say, “I’m hungry”.

I’m looking forward to another relaxing year as Alpha as I take up my post on the red chair (or, as the humans refer to it, the “throne”), watch the household antics of Oliver and Alberto, receive my treats and have a perpetually full food bowl.

Jasmine Opines

Siamese cat Jasmine in fake nose and glassesWell, I am still living in the human’s bedroom but things have progressed. If you’re wondering why I live in the bedroom, you can read about it in Amelia’s story.

There have been some breakthroughs in 2016. The humans invite Lily into the bedroom frequently in the evenings and things are progressing enough that  I will actually come out from under the bed when she’s there (although sometimes she forgets she’s supposed to show me deference and chases after me, resulting in a loud a hissy fit and a big “fluffy tail”).. The female human is also leaving the bedroom door open periodically (when she can watch Lily and make sure she doesn’t waltz in.)  I am optimistic about the future.

Siamese cat sitting at a snowy windowThere is much in my two-room environment to keep me interested, the automatic red dot thingy Siamese cat sitting oi chair in front of widow in winterthat twirls and spins and throws red dots down the hallway, huge windows and wide window ledges that look out to the woods around the house.  I often have visitors come by. Some are felines, some are birds, some are squirrels and there is the occasional raccoon as well.

My brother Tucker comes and visits and sleeps overnight, as does Oliver and Alberto.  Tucker sleeps in one of the cushy cat beds but  Alberto and Oliver are a bit disruptive so they end up being escorted out of the room at some time in the wee hours.

The female human showed me that you don’t have to go out to do good work for pets. She and her sister founded a lost pet social media organization for our area and many pets have been reunited with their families thanks to all the good people who help.

All in all, it’s been a good year and much more interesting than last year. The female human told me that when I write my year end comments for 2017, she hopes I’ll be telling you how I roam around the house again.

Lily Opines

cat with New Years hat and glassesIt’s been a good year. I’ve been in the human’s bedroom many times and I’m thinking Jasmine and I may be friends after all (as long as I don’t forget myself and  chase her).

I have a nice routine with the female human. Each evening after she finishes making dinner, she goes downstairs and gets a pail full of cat food. She calls this “junk food” and won’t let us eat it on a regular basis, but she does give Alberto and I a few bits. If Tucker deigns to sashay down the stairs to join us, he gets a few pieces too. She then takes the pail and puts the food down on the patio for our masked friends. One of them comes with her little masked babies and I like to sit by the sliding glass doors and chat with them about woodland life versus indoor life. Seems to me I have the better deal.

The female human’s story “All My Children Wear Fur Coats” was published in February in the newest Chicken Soup for the Cat Lover’s soul book. This experience made her even more interested in writing about and for cats (it’s because of this that she is our purrrrsonal assistant and types for us in this blog). She was even on several radio shows talking about the fabulous Tribe of Five and is now working on something she refers to as a “cozy mystery” that has two cats as main characters (I hope one of them is me).

This month was a bit stressful. Some of the human’s relatives visited, and, although I am sure they are wonderful people, I did not want to be bothered so I spent the time downstairs, burrowed under the sofa cover. The Tribe of Five produced a manual for guests who visit homes with felines, you may want to ensure your humans read this.

It’s been a purrfectly wonderful  year and I look forward to a purrfectly wonderful 2017 as well.

Oliver Opines

Black and white cat with new years mask and hatI would say that I probably had the most exciting year as I threw my hat in the ring as the Kitty Cat Party cat-i-date for purresident. My running mate, Olive, from Three Chatty Cats, and I even sent our human to a conference called Blogpaws with campaign buttons to spread the word about our platform.

Olive and I presented a complete platform only to find that the Today Show featured another feline who was running and never even mentioned my name so I had to take them to task, sheesh, what’s a cat got to do to get some press coverage?

Sadly, my running mate and I did not win but this does black and white kitten runs for presidentnot mean that I have abandoned all my purrlitical aspirations. I have been reading about cats that are mayors, customs officials and even a Chief Mouser for the British Cabinet.  Now that I have some experience, I’m thinking I might just be successful at this purrlitical thing.

No matter what I decide to do in 2017, it will be a great year and I look forward to opining all about it.

Alberto Opines

Siamese cat in bag wearing party hatIt was a great year. I was the official spokes-purrson for the Kitty Cat Pawty campaign and I quite enjoyed all the attention.  Even though my brother Oliver didn’t win, he told me there would be a job for me if he ever entered the purrlitical arena again.

Things in the spring and summer were grand. The humans bought us a portable catio and we all enjoyed
bird and squirrel watching on the front porch and upstairs deck in complete safety. Ever since the female human took a class about the concept of “Fearless” cat raising, she’s made sure our home is as fear free as possible.

The next exciting thing I experienced was being able to Siamese ca walking on leash in the gardenstroll through the front garden with a harness and leash. I quite enjoy myself when the female human takes me out to explore.

I had fun with the male human showing him how to pluck the string things on his guitar, we made some lovely mewsic together

img_2553Fall was a bit dicey. First the humans tried to put some ridiculous thing on me that they called a “dinosaur costume”. I was having none of it and, as you can see by my expression, I conveyed my unhappiness quite clearly.

Then, the female human came out into the living room one night made up like a feline. I was completely gobsmacked (as my British moggie friends would say). At first I was freaked out. Was she going through some strange human to feline transformation? If she was transforming into a cat, who would take over all the things she does for us? (I don’t trust siamese cat and woman with cat ears and cat make-upthe male human to do this). Once I calmed down and figured out she was not cat-morphing I became a bit annoyed. Was she mocking us? It was a terrible “faux paws”  and one, I am fairly certain, the female human will not repeat.

As I lounge by the fire, I am thinking what a happy cat I am and I think 2017 will be even better.

A final note from the #TribeOfFive

Thanks to all our friends out there in the blogosphere. We love the notes we receive from other felines (and other non-feline creatures…and even humans)  and we look forward to entertaining and enlightening you all from our little corner of the world in 2017.

Purrs & Meows,
Tucker, Jasmine, Lily, Alberto & Oliver

 

 

 

 

 

Walk Through the Web Wednesday 11/2

siamese cat in black and white with blue eyes, Alberto, Feline Opines

Hello Friends, furry and otherwise,
It’s that time of the week again and I’ve found some great cat-related items on the world-wide web. I hope you enjoy!
Your Friend,
img_1067

A Tonk’s Tale-Wordless Wednesday

tonkstailheadernew2016afinalThis photo array of a feline and a squirrel is awesome!  Our squirrel/bird feeder is on the upstairs deck and we don’t get so close to our wildlife visitors. I am considering having my purrrrsonal assistant make a poster from these fantastic photos and hang them over one img_1924of our litter boxes. Also, I must say that the “press feline” looks quite dapper here and I am reconsidering my attire as official press secretary for the Kitty Kat Party.

P.S. If you want to see the pitiful squirrel viewing the Tribe of Five is forced to endure, check out this short video.

 

 

 

David Tennant-Narrates Anti-Stress Films For Cats And Dogs

actor david tennant narrates a film for nervous catsNow here is an idea whose time has come. We felines (and my canine friends) have a lot to be stressed out about like door bells, vacuum monsters, thunder, well you get the idea. One would think that a feline’s humans (particularly humans who pride themselves on keeping a “fear free” home would have better sense than to put on cat ears and paint their face like a feline. I kid you not, siamese cat and woman with cat ears and cat make-upthis is what the feline human did on their Howl-o-ween holiday. Nearly gave me a heart attack. Suffice to say there will be no more of that in our house. The photo is of her trying to apologize.

 

 

Stylist-Revealed: the most popular cat and dog names of 2016


I don’t know about you but I often wonder where in the heck the humans got the names they call us. Our humans have long stories about how this happened and they never puppy and kitten cuddling togetherchange our names from the shelter names right away but wait awhile to get to know us better. My name, for instance, is because of my sleek physique and my penchant for running around the house like a speed demon. The male human loves bicycle racing and so they called me Alberto Contador. I know, pretty dumb huh?. I can say that I’m a bit annoyed that my brother, Oliver’s name appears as number four on the list. Seriously? We many need to renegotiate this naming thing.

Houzz – 15 Design-Friendly Places to Hide the Cat Litter Box

I’m throwing this one in for the humans. Frankly, I could care less where our litter boxes litter box built into the bathroom wallare located or what they look like.  Just keep ’em clean and easy to get in to. Period. but the female human spends much time and money on litter boxes that don’t look like litter boxes and ensuring they are placed in areas where company will never see them. So humans, enjoy.

 

 

 

 

Mental Floss – Chicago’s Secret Weapon Against Rats: Feral Cats

This is my favorite find this week. We have feral cats that visit our house and the female human always offers them food, water and shelter but sadly, we have coyotes and large birds of prey where we live and the feral cats never seem to hang around long enough for her to trap them. Chicago is solving a terrible problem and helping feral cats at the same time. Around our neck of the woods, those kinds of working cats are called barn cats, looks like some of these Chicago felines could be called Tavern cats.

Venkman the tabby who lives at Empirical Brewery in ChicatoOne of these tavern cats is named Venkman and you can read about the great new life he and other cats have thanks to Empirical Brewery. (Note to self, tell the humans to buy this beer). Actually, these felines have a great life, regular meals, a safe and warm place to sleep and a job to do. Two paws up for Empirical Brewery and all the other Chicago businesses who are giving feral cats homes and jobs.  Oh, and by the way, Venkman is on Twitter at @VenkmanTheCat.  Maybe some other cities will try this excellent program.

 

 

Changing Your Purrspective

Hello World,

Alberto here. I have been observing the humans lately and the female human appears to be in a state other humans refer to as “stressed out”.  As a feline, I am unfamiliar with this. It is not in the feline nature, particularly the nature of a spoiled indoor feline living in a fear-free environment to have this “stressed out” condition.

Still, I care deeply for the feline human and pondered how I might go about assisting her. One morning it occurred to me. She needs a change of purrspective!

As the female human is on the “shortish” side (she requires a stool to reach the highest parts of the cabinets) and definitely not as coordinated or flexible as this feline , I decided to help her by finding her a new purrspective.

Siamese cat on top of refrigerator This was no easy feat.  had to balance myself on a stack of antique suitcases in the corner of the dining room. From there I had to jump up to the top of the buffet and make my way through the slalom course of  numerous crystal and silver candlesticks . From the buffet I leaped to the top of the kitchen cabinets and from there, I was at the highest point of the house.

I made myself comfortable on top of the big, white cat food keeper and was delighted to find that if I kicked my foot in just the right way, I could actually open the door of the cat food keeper. This was a bonus.

As I settled in to contemplate my lofty purrspective endeavoring to find some insight for the female human I heard a gasp and then “Alberto!”

Siamese cat on top of refrigerator Evidently the female human did not appreciate my efforts to assist her. She dragged her little stool over, stood on it and dragged me from my spot.

That’s the thanks a feline gets for trying to help the humans with a problem. I am sorely disappointed that she did not appreciate my efforts. Next time I will show the same lack of concern as my brother Oliver, who is always more interested in his own state of being than that of anyone else.

 

Good-bye for now, your Friend,

Amelia’s Story-Part 3

Judgments Made
It was about a week after Amelia was at the shelter that I saw a Facebook post that sent me into a tailspin. There was that beautiful Tabby face that I loved and a story of a “heartless

AmeliaYells+_Flowers

Amelia being silly

person who adopted her and callously brought her back to the shelter”. The write up said, “I thought I had a forever home…”

My throat closed up, tears flowed and I felt as though someone had punched me in the gut. I had enough guilt as it was. I had done everything I could to help Amelia find her perfect home and yet, I trusted that with the letter I wrote, the shelter would write that she was a wonderful, loving feline who would do best in a one cat family.

Misunderstandings Resolved
Fortunately I know the folks at the shelter and I often volunteer there. I sent an email to the shelter director and received an immediate call back. To make a long story short, the individual who posted the information about Amelia had not read the letter I sent, nor did they have any of the backstory. They had fallen in love with Amelia and went into “protector mode” making an erroneous judgment about her return.

I fully understand the passion and compassion of the wonderful folks at our shelter and I didn’t want to know who wrote the post, I just wanted to ensure that Amelia’s story was known so that the chances of finding her a suitable forever home were increased.

Our shelter director (one of the best in the country) is passionate in her stance that people should not judge these situations without all the facts.  She was wonderful and the situation was sorted in the best manner for Amelia.

Happy Endings
It was several weeks later that I learned that Amelia had been adopted. I felt as though a ten ton weight had been taken away from my chest. I cried (again) but this time they were tears of thankfulness and joy.

The Emotional After Effects
I cannot tell you the emotional baggage that comes with returning an animal to the

IllieKitten_1

Oliver

shelter. Last summer we fostered two kittens and when we decided we wanted to bring

AlKitten_1

Alberto

them into our home, it was hard filling out the forms and checking
the box that asks, “Have you ever returned an animal to the shelter?” Even though I know and work with the folks at our shelter
even though we received nothing but love and encouragement from the shelter,  I still felt like a pariah, a horrible person who didn’t deserve to adopt cats-ever.

Lesson Learned: The Shelter is Your Friend
I pray that no one ever finds themselves in the same situation we had with Amelia. If you do, and have employed every resource available, think of your shelter as your ally, not your enemy. I mentioned that we have a top class shelter and I do not exaggerate.  I would never have taken Amelia back to the shelter if they were not a “no-kill” facility and if they weren’t dedicated to see animals in their care find appropriate forever homes.  At the end of the day, it’s about the animal and any fear or pride or anguish we felt in the decision to return her was for her best interest and the best interest of our fur kids at home.

I am pleased to tell you that our shelter has recently implemented a program called “Home to Home” and it’s specific purpose is to give people who can no longer keep their pets the opportunity to find new, loving homes without having to drop pets off at the shelter. Pets go from one home into another.  Had this been in place when we had Amelia, I could have been a part of helping her find a new home.

Lesson Learned: Closure is Important
That brings me to another point.  Although I am thrilled that Amelia has a new home, I have no idea where she went. I don’t know if her new family received the letter and health records I sent with her. I will never rid myself completely of the sadness of losing Amelia but I believe, had I known where she went and that she’s happy I could completely put those feelings to rest.

Final Thoughts
As you can see, the happy ending I promised did happen. We still miss Amelia but I choose to believe she is happy and enjoying her new home. We still deal with the repercussions of

JazCloseUp_LR

Jasmine

that experience. Jasmine has not fully integrated back into the household but having the kittens come and “visit” her has helped resocialize her. We are also working regularly to bring Lily together with Jasmine.

I will be doing the happy dance the day we open the bedroom door and Jasmine struts down the hallway and enjoys the company of the other felines and all the places she used to love to sit and sleep and play.

Amelia’s story changed us.  Before we fostered, we felt we didn’t have the right to adopt anymore and the fear of finding ourselves in another “Amelia” situation terrified us. I still continue to assess what happened with Amelia, watching episodes of “My Cat From Hell” and wondering, “Would that have worked with Amelia?, Should we have done that with Amelia?” I doubt I’ll ever stop trying to figure out what happened and how we might have been able to fix it and keep Amelia in our home.

I wanted to tell you Amelia’s story because I know we are not the only people who have found ourselves in this painful situation. I wanted to tell you Amelia’s story to offer hope to those who have been or will be in our situation. Returning an animal to the shelter does not make you a horrible person, nor does it make the animal horrible. Returning an animal to the shelter is a “dirty little secret” that many are afraid to share. In fact, some shelters and rescue organizations will not allow you adopt if you have ever returned an animal. All too often, people are too quick to judge and censure those in these situations. Granted, there are far too many people who treat animals like possessions, tossing them away when they “don’t fit, people who are not willing to invest the time, money and heart it takes to help an animal fit into their household. But for those of us who have moved heaven and earth to keep an animal in our homes, we beat ourselves up enough, we don’t need any help.

imageWe bring animals into our homes with the intent of offering them love and a forever home.  Love isn’t always enough and forever isn’t always forever. Despite the heartache of Amelia’s story, we believe that the journey of love and adoption of an animal is a risk we will always be willing to take.

 

Follow Up To Amelia’s Story

Amelia’s Story-Part 1

Hello,
As my regular readers know, the felines are the voice of this blog but the felines have graciously allowed me to write this story because it’s very important, not just for felines but for the humans who love them.  

There are two things you need to know before you begin reading this piece.  First, this is one of the hardest articles I’ve ever written.  I still can’t write it without shedding tears.  Second, and most important, this story has a happy ending and hopefully a lesson and comfort for those who have been in the same situation, so please stay the course. Amelia’s story sparked my passion for the fear free movement and all the benefits it brings to our fur kids.  

Anita

Meeting Lily

I attended a gala shopper’s evening at our local shelter’s thrift store.  As I admired all the displays and fantastic prices, one of the shelter Board members approached me and said,  “You have to meet a kitten.” I never say no to making a new feline friend so before you could say “meow” I was in the kitten room looking at the most unusual, sweet little round-eyed kitten.

LilyKitten

Lily as a kitten

It took about 10 minutes for me to be completely smitten. My husband and I had been discussing bringing a kitten into our feline tribe and so I quickly snapped the photo you see on the left and texted him, “I found our kitten.”

 Kittens Must Always Come in Pairs

It took several days of conversation before my husband agreed that we could adopt Lily, with one caveat; we had to adopt another kitten as well. He had a good point as integrating a kitten into a household of one seventeen-year old cat and two ten-year old cats might be hard for a single kitten. Two kittens would have each other to play and bond with and the older guys would be spared some of the kitten shenanigans. I agreed and we set off to bring our new fur kids home.

Amelia

Amelia

We came home with two fur babies that afternoon. Lily and a spunky little Tabby we named Amelia after Amelia Earhart because she fearlessly flew all over the house and ended up in the highest places.

As much as I loved Lily, it was Amelia who bonded with me the most. Wherever I was, she was there, keeping me company on a stool in the kitchen while I cooked, always near, always interested in what I was doing, always seeking me out.

Both kittens bonded well, with each other, the rest of the cats and with us. Amelia’s, smart and sassy personality and her eyes that seemed to speak to me inspired the writing of this blog. I never tired of watching her exhibit her own brand of catitude. And, as a fiction writer, I could just imagine what this little character was thinking.

Happy Kittens, Happy Feline Family

As Amelia’s  distinctive personality inspired me I created the blog, “Amelia’s World”. She  shared her opinion about visiting the vet, her life with the other felines and anything else that captured her interest.  Lily was content to live a more private life away from public view.

The feline “elders” were happy to engage with the kittens on their own terms and pleased that the little ones had each other to play with. All was well with our feline tribe.

Our Sorrow

PRoses

Miss P.

Fast forward one year. Our beloved Miss P., Alpha of the tribe, died at the age of 18. We were inconsolable. She was our first fur kid, the first year of our marriage.

Her death changed the dynamic of our feline tribe. Our now ten-year old male, Tucker, slipped into the role of Alpha. He was the only male and although he’s  an easy-going, no drama kind of guy, his sixteen pounds helped him secure the position with little effort on his part.

Tucker’s sibling, Jasmine took it all in stride. As long as she could come out on the upstairs deck with us, sit on a chair and watch the birds, her life was complete.  Lily had no leadership aspirations but it was a completely different situation with Amelia.

Our Struggle

BigFootTuck

Tucker

No matter how hard Amelia fought to take control,  and fight she did, Tucker wasn’t having it. He quickly let Amelia know that he was now the Boss Cat.  We watched helplessly as our previously harmonious house became a battle field.

Amelia’s frustration exhibited itself in numerous ways. One was aggression toward the other cats.  Tucker was too big to bully. Lily stood up to Amelia and refused to back down.  Poor Jasmine however, was too timid to stand her ground. She had never been bullied before and  her sweet, shy nature made her a perfect target. Her response to Amelia’s aggression was to run from  and hide. The  decision to run emboldened Amelia, who quickly realized that Jasmine was the best target for her frustration.

The battles became louder and more horrific and created an untenable situation for Jasmine, who retreated to our bedroom and ultimately took up residence there.

IMAG0004Without access to Jasmine, Amelia’s frustration grew. She went from my sweet, funny and mischievous little cat to an upset and angry cat. She exhibited her unhappiness by peeing all over the house. Each morning and evening became a black light excursion with long cleaning sessions. We spent hundreds of dollars on pheromone plug-ins, air cans, moving furniture, buying new area rungs and even new furniture. We spent extra time with Amelia, playing with her and loving her, attempting to calm  her aggression. We also made numerous visits to the vet to ensure there were no underlying health issues.

We loved this smart, sassy Tabby and despite the situation we now found ourselves in, we were committed to do whatever it took to remedy the situation. Almost a year and hundreds of dollars later, nothing had changed. We were all, human and feline, living in a continual state of  stress and fear.

Next time: the Right thing Is Often the Hardest Thing -Amelia’s Story Part 2