Walk Though The Web Wednesday 7/24

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hello There Furiends,
Lots of goings on at our house last night. About 9:00 p.m. The Female Human learned about a weather alert coming our way, high winds (75mph) thunder and lightning storm.

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“Make it stoooop!” Oliver

The Tribe is NOT fond of weather like this and since we have so many huge windows in our house we have to find a safe place to hide…..with The Female Human who is more of a scardy cat than we are.

 

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“I’ll get out of the laundry when you make that scary storm stop!” Alberto

It was a loooong night and each feline had their own way of coping. The Female Human is a bit sleep deprived today but all was well at our house but there was much chaos in other areas. The wind did a lot of damage, trees were toppled and lightning struck houses and trees. We checked in on our local feline furiends and everyone was safe and sound inside.

Stay safe my furiends and I hope you enjoy this week’s web wanderings.
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Britain’s New P.M.’s first job is to impress the cat

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Larry the cat currently holds the official role of chief mouser to the Cabinet Office.

Britain has a new Prime Minister but he has yet to pass his hardest test…approval from Larry, the Chief Mouser.

Larry probably shed few tears when Theresa May left as, although she said she was “very happy to see Larry” she did say she was more of a dog person. There was some controversy as to how David Cameron got along with Larry but Cameron waved a photo of himself with Larry curled up in his lap to prove they were pals,

How will Larry and the new P.M., Boris Johnson get on? Only time will tell.

 

How to stroke a cat…according to science

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Oh my whiskers, why must you humans complicate everything? Now a bunch of scientists have gotten together and studied the correct way to pet cats. First, not all us felines are the same. Second, our humans get to know us and what we like and don’t like. It’s not rocket science people, no matter how hard you try to make it more complicated than it is.

Here is some of what the study discovered. “Although a lot of cats do like being stroked, and in certain contexts will choose us over foodhuman interaction is something they have to learn to enjoy during their comparatively short sensitive period– between two and seven weeks old.

When it comes to human-cat interactions, the characteristics of humans are also important. Our personalities and gender, the regions of the cat’s body we touch and how we generally handle cats, may all play an important role in how the cat responds to our affections.”

If you particularly uneducated about felines, the article even includes signs of cat enjoyment and cat dislike or tension.

Not even cats, the inspiration for Cats, like the trailer for Cats

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The trailer for this year’s adaptation of Cats is out but sadly, it appears that when viewed by real felines, those real felines are underwhelmed. A number of humans had their cats view the trailer and then tweeted about their reactions, many with videos.  The pained expression on this feline’s face is pitiful.

Almost every cat that viewed the trailer seems either deeply unimpressed, disdainful, or vocally displeased with what’s put before them.

I can’t help but enjoy the irony of the hubris of you humans, putting a movie together about cats, called Cats and then waiting until it was finished to see if real cats would appreciate it. MOL!

Canadian police mistakenly use cat filter during news conference on double murder

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Clearly the Canadian police missed my Walk Through The Web Wednesday feature of June 20th where I reported on the Pakistani politician who gave his entire speech with a cat filter on. So since they didn’t follow my news reporting, the Canadian police have found themselves in the position of apologizing after a cat filter was used during a Facebook live-streaming of a news conference about a double murder, which gave the presiding officer whiskers and ears. Sergeant Janelle Shoihet, from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police of British Columbia, blamed “technical difficulties” for the error. “Technical difficulties – MOL!  Humans, ignore my cutting edge news reporting at your own risk!

Why Do Cats Lick You?

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I bet our Female Human has wondered about this when one of us drags our scratchy tongue along her hand, face, etc. There are a number of reasons, we lick you to calm you down, to show you affection, and to mark you as our territory. And, if we lick you excessively, we’re probably trying to tell you that you stink!

Walk Through The Web Wednesday 7/10

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hello Furiends,
Alberto here. I sure hope your summer is going better than ours! Our main staff and General Lackey ended up in the emergency room on July 4th with a newly diagnosed ulcer. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m as sympathetic as the next feline but I did have to ask myself, “How does this affect me?”

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KD the (gasp) dog at our house waiting for the squirrel to come to the upstairs deck.

In addition, we have some human furiends staying at our house who have a …get ready for it…DOG! The Tribe has never seen a dog and worse, never heard a dog bark! I have demanded access to the bedroom at night. Oliver spends his time hiding under the table in the living room and Lily runs around with her big eyes even bigger.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This is Tucker at the vet. The meds made him pretty woozy.

Tucker could care less but that might be due to the fact that the medication he was on zonked him out so bad he couldn’t walk without stumbling. This resulted in an emergency visit to the vet on Sunday (fortunately our place with the white coats, Pend Oreille Veterinary Service is open 7 days a week (at least fortunately in this case but not so great that The Female Human can now drag us there any day of the week!). He was so out of it The Female Human didn’t even have to put him in the carrier. She just wrapped him in a beach towel.

The vets take care of the Tribe very well and even though it took the poor guy  a few days to recover he’s now on new meds and back to his sassy, treat-begging self.

Remember how I had to apologize on The Female Human’s behalf last Wednesday? Well, she’s still behind but working hard to catch up. We are giving her a bit of a break as long as she promises to respond to all our correspondence for us by the end of the week.

Okay, enough about us, let’s get to this week’s web wanderings!
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11 Facts About Hemmingway’s Cats

Ernest Hemingway

I had to ask The Female Human, “Who is this Hemmingway person and what’s the deal about his cats?” She said the short version of the story is that Ernest Hemingway was given a white six-toed cat by a ship’s captain . Now many of the cats who live at his home (which is now a museum) are descendants of that original cat, named Snow White. Now all the cats at the museum are polydactyl.  Hemmingway  named all of his cats after famous people and the museum follows that tradition today.

There’s lots of interesting information about these felines. As I mentioned they are all 6-toed, they survived hurricane Irma, one of the cats was “jailed” and a federal complaint was filed against them. For more information on these facts and the other 7 facts, you’ll have to read the article.

Gatos and Beans, Alabama’s 1st cat café, opening August 1

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I love reporting on cat cafes, especially when they have something unusual to offer. This cafe has amazing feline art like the mural in the photo above. Gatos and Beans will be a combo adoption center, cat therapy place for people who can’t have cats at home, and a café / bar for humans. ‘Sounds absolutely purrfect to me.

Gatos and Beans is a family affair: The Steward family,Kelli, Stephen and Stephen’s two sons are the owners. Kelli has worked at a local veterinary clinic for more than 20 years and was looking for a new animal related endeavor. In November 2018, they won second place in REV Birmingham‘s The Big Pitch Competition, and since then, they haven’t looked back.

Gatos and Beans will operate like most of the 99 or 100 other cat café’s in the country. You will buy a ticket for coffee and time with the fabulous felines. And if you want more, you’re always welcome to upgrade to get a fancy coffee drink, beer, wine, or a snack. If you live in the area you can get your pre-opening offer now, or keep checking their website to see when they open reservations.

Catcam videos reveal cats don’t sleep all day

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Tucker is very serious about nap time.

This one is filed under my “Duh! Why did you humans spend time and money on studying this?”

Maren Huck, a behavioral ecologist at the University of Derby, in the United Kingdom, recruited 21 English felines and put cameras on them.  Of the 21, 16 tolerated the Oreo-sized cameras enough to count as participants in this project.

This human felt that  cats #1 activity is sleeping. This was not what her study proved.  Huck said,their top activity actually was “resting” – not sleeping, and the study showed that another preferred pastime was “exploring,” which Huck said amounts to “sniffing at plants or things.” There’s a whole lot more stuff in this article but I ask you humans, did you really need to spend the time and money for this?

Liam Gallagher assures brother Noel that his cat is safe amid feud

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Liam Gallagher holds his kitten Sid, which he adopted from Wood Green, The Animals Charity. Picture: Wood Green, The Animals Charity

I don’t follow human music but evidently this Liam Gallagher (the former Oasis frontman) and his brother Noel had a spat and he took the argument a bit too far when Liam involved the cat, suggesting his brother doesn’t even think about kidnapping the cat. ‘And don’t try and kidnap the cat either, we’ve just employed Ross Kemp as his close protection officer,’ he said. Liam quickly apologised, saying: ‘My sincere apologies to my beautiful mum and my lovely niece Anais for getting caught up in all of this childish behaviour, I love you both dearly LG x.’

He has also found himself in the position of responding to concerns regarding the cat. ‘Did you kidnap Noel’s cat?’ a fan tweeted. ‘Wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole,’ the singer responded. Well that settles that then. Like his brother, Liam is a devoted cat fan, and last year he gave a home to two unwanted felines, who were being looked after at The Animals Charity in London.

People, people, if you can’t get along, PLEASE  leave the cat out of it!

 

Artist designs tattoo sleeves for hairless cats to keep them warm in winter

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Feline fashion is a “thing”. I purrsonally know a fabulous feline fashionista, Coco the Couture Cat, but this is a new kind of feline fashion. Artist and animal fashion designer, Airie McCready, has tapped into a niche market with her inspired invention Tattcats. The sheer jumpers are made with a soft material that’s good for the cat’s skin, and are designed to look like a sleeve of tattoos to keep your hairless cat warm this winter. “These cats get cold because they don’t have any fur,” McCready said. So now my hairless feline friends can stay warm and comfy and look edgy too. Rock on my furiends, rock on!

Walk Through The Web Wednesday 7/3

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hey There Furiends,
It’s my web wandering Wednesday. I hope you enjoy the news I scratched out for you this week.

Before I present my stories, I thought I’d do a quick catch up. Things have been a little crazy in our house and our Purrsonal Assistant has been a bit distracted so her work product is not up to par (translation, she has not transcribed all our responses to our blog yet and we are mortified that this is taking her so long).  She also has some friends at our house. Very nice people but there is a bit of an issue with The Tribe regarding ONE of the visitors.

Here is how the conversation went:
final-48Female Human, “Al, we’re having some friends come to stay for a while. Very nice people. Oh, and they have a dog.”
Alberto, “Excuse me I thought you said they were bringing a dog.”
Female Human, “Thant’s right but she’s a sweet dog and you’ll love her.
Alberto , “You’ve got to be kitten me!”

I will report on more of this next week.

Another update. I featured a fantastic cat group in one of my recent Walk Through The Web Wednesdays called THIS CAT IS C H O N K Y  The Tribe of Five has been quite active in this group and we’ve learned some things about the fantastic people there. Absolutely NO shaming about anything is allowed. They are true cat lovers and many of them are dedicated to adopting older cats from shelters. Oh,  and these humans have a wicked sense of humor and are very creative. I can’t tell you how many times The Female Human has spit her coffee across the computer screen because she was laughing so hard at a post there.

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She posted this photo of Oliver with the statement that he’d recently been put on a diet and feared starvation was imminent.  The comments were delightful and outright hysterical but these photoshopped pics were the best.

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Okay, I’ve digressed enough, on to the news items. I hope you enjoy them.

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UI online survey aims to determine how face shape affects cats’ health

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University of Illinois researchers are asking cat owners to participate in on online survey to determine whether cats’ face shapes are associated with certain health and wellness characteristics. They are purrticularily interested in finding out if brachycephalic cats — the breeds with flat, squishy faces  experience breathing issues similar to those of squishy-faced dogs.  So if you are a squishy faced feline, have your human wander on over to take the survey and help these folks out.

 

FELINE FANS DESCEND ON SOCAL’S ANNUAL CATCON TO CELEBRATE OUR FURRY FRIENDS!

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One of the biggest feline events in the country, CatCon LA made a big splash again last weekend. One of the top feline photographers, Erica Danger, was there to capture every beautiful feline at the purrfect moment. A Kat Von D beauty bar was set up to teach everyone how to get the perfect cat eye. – Apryl Triana, a Phoenix, AZ-based tattoo artist was there providing cat tats and there were many, many more cool feline related booths. There were lots of cat-loving celebrities and best of all, Best Friends Animal Society had an adoption village for felines to find furever homes.  I must insist that The Female Human attends next year!

Square Paws – Architect Designed, Artisan Crafted Cat Products

SquarePaws
If run of the mill, blah cat condos. beds, etc. are too pedestrian for your feline, then you need to check out the stuff at Square Paws. Now it will cost you but, really, aren’t we worth it? Check out this video and see the amazing stuff you could buy for your feline.

 

 

AI Keeps Cats And Their Kill Out of The House

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Who says automation and AI is useless when it comes to cats? Not Ben Hamm,  an engineer at Amazon who , noticed his cat often brought dead animals back to the house as a ‘gift.’ It wasn’t that he wasn’t thankful for the presents but it just was unpleasant  to wake up to a dead rat. So he decided to explore AI  and built a model that would lock the cat door when his pet tried to bringing a dead animal with it. Now the article has a lot of geek speak to explain how it works and if  you like that kind of stuff  you can read more and watch the video.  Hamm says the prototype is working well, only locking the cat out once when it shouldn’t. He gets texts with photos of his cat. Pretty cool, who’d have thought I’d be reporting on AI and cats in the same article?

19 Cat Myths That Need to Go

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“You humans believe some of the dumbest things about felines. We need to talk.” Lily

You humans believe some of the silliest things about us and some of the things you believe can be downright harmful to us felines. Like the belief that cats can be vegans, no, no and NO! Now The Tribe enjoys a gnosh on some wheat grass now and then but we are obligate carnivores. We NEED meat.

And then there’s the misconception that you should get a cat because we are so low-maintenance. You can leave us alone over the weekend.  Uh NOPE, we like companionship and even though we are all different purrsonalities, we miss you when you’re gone.

And then there’s the “cats always land on their feet” myth. Unless we don’t. Yes we can twist in midair to position ourselves to land feet first, there are times when we, just like the best Olympic gymnast, don’t stick our landing.

You can read the other 16 myths in the article just to be sure you’re not believing some old wives tale about your felines.

 

 

Walk Through The Web Wednesday 6/26

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hello There Furiends,
Alberto here with my weekly web wanderings. Not too much to report from The Tribe this week. I can report that Lily and Tucker have been living on the edge lately.

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Feline Chair is Purrfect

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Once again our friends across the pond show their great love of felines. This chair is cat-specific and even comes with a cover that can be changed and washed in case it gets a bit furry. Now the people that wrote this article said that the chair would be a substitute for a human’s lap…clearly that writer does not know felines. At a price of 12.99GBP (about $16.48 US) the chair is a steal. I expect to see Moggies all over the British Isles lounging in one of these soon.

Good Grief! Step Away From The Washing Machine!

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This is a cautionary tale for all my feline friends and their humans. Recently, a human who is in the habit of checking the laundry in her washing machine to make sure none of her three cats have crawled inside, thought she’d done her due diligence and hit the “wash” button.

Thirty five minutes later when the cycle was done she checked the washing and saw a white paw.

One year old Felix had found his way into the washer. She rushed him to her veterinary hospital. Poor guy had lost his vision and had pneumonia from the amount of water in his lungs, he did survive and is doing better now — he can see and has started eating. He’s still on oxygen. The vet has assured Felix’s human that Felix will make a full recovery but the human can’t forgive herself. People, check your laundry carefully! And thank goodness Felix will be okay.

Car Shows Are For Cats Too

CatCArShow

Car shows are not just for humans, evidently they’re for cats too. Boost, the cat, has been attending car shows since she was a kitten and she’s now stealing the show wherever she goes. How do her humans know she enjoys these shows? Her human sayus, “I can dangle the keys and she’ll come running”.

And Boost is not the only feline at these car shows. You can often see Cal, a one year old Sphynx there too. Cal often wears costumes to the shows.

Lil BUB’s Birthday Party Has Us Feelin’ Feline

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Lil Bub celebrates her birthday by doing good for homeless cats.

OK, full disclosure, when it comes to Lil Bub, I’m a fanboy. And my favorite feline starlet did not disappoint on her eighth birthday last weekend. She held a fund raiser at the Corey Helford Gallery in downtown Los Angeles for The Kitty Bungalow Charm School for Wayward Cats.   

Lil BUB had a meet & greet, with celebrities like Jackson Galaxy and Hannah Shaw. They had party games, a bounce house, a magic show, and, of course a birthday cake. Thank you Lil Bub for using your birthday to do good things for kitties who need furever homes.

The 25 Most Cat-Friendly Cities in the U.S.

FriendliestCatCities

Dear humans, if you’re planning a move to a new city, please purruse this list of cat-friendly cities before you make your plans.

The top 25 were selected by research into cities offered the most cat-centered services and which cities had the most cat-friendly homes available for purchase. Trupanion (a pet insurance company) and Redfin (a real estate brokerage) teamed up to research this list

Trupanion analyzed the cat-centered services — perks like cat clinics, shelters and hospitals — and took note of which cities were natural homes to plants that are toxic to felines. Redfin contributed to the analysis by looking at the number of cat-friendly homes — abodes with high ceilings, litter box space and patios — available in each of the cities.

The city that topped the list, based on these factors, was Corvallis, Oregon. I’ve included the full list below.

I am proud to say that the Spokane, WA, a city about two hours away from where The Tribe of Five lives is #2. I need to get The Female Human out and about in Spokane to see what’s going on!

1.   Corvallis, Oregon

2.   Spokane, Washington

3.   Orlando, Florida

4.   Bellingham, Washington

5.   Tulsa, Oklahoma

6.   Raleigh, North Carolina

7.   New York, New York

8.   Dayton, Ohio

9.   Clarksville, Tennessee

10.                San Antonio, Texas

11.                Albuquerque, New Mexico

12.                Eugene, Oregon

13.                Boston, Massachusetts

14.                Allentown, Pennslyvania

15.                Dover, Delaware

16.                Columbus, Ohio

17.                Boise, Idaho

18.                Louisville, Kentucky

19.                Tacoma, Washington

20.                Lincoln, Nebraska

21.                Portland, Oregon

22.                Minneapolis, Minnesota

23.                Knoxville, Tennessee

24.                Santa Rosa, California

25.                Oakland, California

Walk Through The Web Wednesday 6/20

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hello There Furiends,
I hope your summer is going well. The Tribe is anxious to get outside and enjoy the pop-up catio but the weather has not cooperated so we snooze on the sofa and await the sunshine. You may have noted that my Wednesday feature is appearing on Thursday..our Purrsonal Assistant has been under a lot of stress lately so we allowed her a days grace on my feature, as long as it does’t happen again!

This photo is of me chillaxin’ in The Female Human’s bedroom which is the territory that belongs to Jasmine but Jasmine does allow me to visit if I behave myself. This is me behaving myself.
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Since we have been forced to stay inside, window duty is very important to us because you never know what you’ll see out there. The other day we watched The Female Human pull out of the garage, stop the car and then run into the front garden waving her arms and yelling. As Oliver and I took up our post at the kitchen window we had a front row seat to the comedy that ensued. Our Human is shouting and waving her arms. The freeloader in the garden remained unfazed and took his time munching on the newly emerging flowers. Sheesh, The Female Human could use a chill pill.
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I hope you enjoy my web wanderings this week and here’s to days filled with lots of treats and head scratches.
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Mysterious ‘Cat-Fox’ May Be a Newly Discovered Species, Researchers Say

 

Okay, I will admit that I am a feline of limited scientific knowledge but this “discovery” has me puzzled.

On the French island of Corsica in the Mediterranean, a strange, rarely seen beast stalks the night. Locals call it ghjattuvolpe – the cat-fox – and for the last decade, scientists have been hot on its trail, trying to unravel the mystery.

The article states that a “rare beast” has been discovered on the French island of Corsica. They call it ghjattuvolpe which means cat fox. Evidently scientists have been studying the animal for 10 years. They say it differs from domestic cats because of its large size, up to 35 inches or 90- centimeters from head to tip, wide ears, short whiskers and long canine teeth. Okay, maybe I’m off base here but this looks like a large feline with a floofy tail. There’s a video on the site but I’m still not convinced. What do you think about this “cat fox”?

Kitty Cure: New Research Suggests an End to Severe Cat Allergies Could Be in Sight

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There is hope for humans who love felines but who can’t get near them without itchy eyes and sneezing fits. Purina scientists have been researching how to manage cat allergens and have recently made a breakthrough in their research. Purina announced that they have recently demonstrated “a proactive way to significantly reduce the active levels of the major cat allergen, Fel d1, at its source in cats’ saliva.”

“These allergens have created a huge barrier to cat ownership and may limit the loving interactions between cat lovers and cats,” immunologist Dr. Ebenezer Satyaraj, Director of Molecular Nutrition at Purina and lead investigator on the research, said in a statement. “Our discovery has the potential to transform how people manage cat allergens.”

I give Purina our paws up award for working to improve the relationship between felines and humans!

Cat-astrophe: Pakistani politician’s event streamed on Facebook with cat filter on

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MOL! I can’t stop laughing about this one. Evidently Pakistani politician Shaukat Yousafzai held a press conference was live-streamed on Facebook — with the cat filter turned on. He wasn’t the only cat filtered human streamed on the event as the filter shifted to whichever human was talking. The cat filter was left on by accident and rather than calling it a cat-astrophe, I’d say it was probably the best political live stream ever done on Facebook!

Just like their mothers: in cat breeds, behaviour is inherited

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“I must have inherited my love of high places.” Alberto

The human scientists are at it again. First they noted that different cats behave in different ways…DUH! So a team from the University of Helsinki studied information about 5726 cats and found differences in behavior between breeds across five different areas: activity level, sociability with humans, shyness, aggressiveness and stereotypical behavior.

Their sample of 5726 included 40 breeds (there are 71 in total, according to the International Cat Association), some of which had to be grouped, forming 19 breeds and breed groups.

You can read the findings, published in the journal Scientific Reports.  Some of their conclusions are a bit suspect to me but what do I know, I’m just a cat.

Play with Your Cat for Science: New Online Study Seeking Participants Worldwide

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It’s time for you humans to step up and  play with your cats for science. Anyone who owns a cat is asked to record themselves playing with their cat and submit the recording online. The deadline is June 30, 2019. You can take part in the study here. Here are more details. So get out that cat dancer and play with your feline!

Walk Through The Web Wednesday 6/5

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hello Furiends,
Alberto here with my Wednesday web wanderings.  Nothing much new around the Tribe except for Oliver’s diet. I think he’s being a bit dramatic about the whole thing but I’ll let you decide.

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“Life has lost it’s meaning. I’m not sure if I can hang on. Diet may be the ruin of me.” Oliver

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“Please send kibble..soon”Oliver

Have a wonderful week and don’t believe everything Oliver says!
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       Feline High Five Pays Off Big Time

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Did you and your human enter the High Five contest sponsored by GreaterGood.org and Jackson Galaxy? Meowza, the prizes were pawsome including a $5,000.00 grant for the winner’s shelter. And Lil Bub was a judge!

Lest you think this was just a fun and frivolous event, the Cat Pawsitive Program is a life-saving program for shelter and rescue cats that aims to increase feline adoption rates by instructing shelter/rescue staff and volunteers how to implement positive reinforcement training for cats, that includes teaching them to high-five. You should find out how to get a Cat Pawsitive program started in your shelter.

Why Can’t My Cat Be A Vegan?

CatVegetables

I never thought I’d have to say this to my readers but….People, cats cannot be vegetarians!!! Lately I’ve been hearing a lot of meowing about vegan kitties and I can’t stress enough how dangerous this is. I’m not going to go into all the details here but you can find them in this ASPCA article.

Here are the major points. We felines are obligate carnivores. That means we need to eat meat to survive. Our digestive systems are not built for a plant only diet (it’s kinda like feeding cows meat, just doesn’t work).

We need the amino acid taurine to survive and taurine is only found in animal sources.  Taurine deficiency leads to heart disease.  We also need high levels of protein and we don’t digest carbs too well.

Bottom line, you could kill us if you don’t feed us what we need. And if you are feeding raw, you need to make sure we are receiving the nutrients we need. You may see us gnawing on the random blade of wheat grass but this does not mean we want a veggie diet!

Suki the Canadian Adventure Cat

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Suki the Adventure Cat

Some of you out there are still poo-pooing the idea of adventure cats so I give you Suki. Suki has been to 12 countries and even spent two months in Europe last year. Suki’s human says, “She’s just a regular cat. I don’t think about it much until we are on the trail and she’ll get recognized. People are so ecstatic to meet her. Generally, it’s not something I think about much. We’re already out there taking photos [as a career] but getting to do it with Suki is amazing.” Evidently her 1.4 million Instagram followers and her jet set lifestyle hasn’t gone to her head. I need to get the staff busy and up our Instagram followers!

Meow-troid? Cat-slevania? Either Way, Gato Roboto Is Excellent

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I know many of you humans are fond of video games. I played the Friskies Cat Fishing game on my mini iPad when I was a kitten but I grew out of it. Still you humans are fans and now, there is a video game that features a  space pilot named Gary who  crash-lands on a small planet, gets stuck in his ship, and sends his cat (who caused the crash in the first place) on an adventure to find help.

Kiki the Kitty explores an abandoned research facility that’s crawling with hostile enemy life, she collects weapons and suit upgrades on her journeys. She is a brave feline who swims and pilots a submarine.  I say, with a feline as the main star of this video game I might need to try this stuff again!

Researchers strapped video cameras on 16 cats and let them do their thing. Here’s what they found

CatCamera

So this happened. Scientists strapped cameras on 16 cats and followed them for four years. They published their findings in Applied Animal Behavior Science from Manchester Metropolitan University. I watched the video with The Female Human and what I saw was that these scientists noted we felines greet each other with nose bonks, sometimes charge our enemies, cover up our poop and play with things. Hmm, I wonder how much this study cost.

When asked why they used cats the researcher said it sprung from her own questions about her cat’s behavior outside. Evidently they started with 21cats but 5 of them were not having the camera around their necks. The researcher also noted that when inside; we felines follow our humans around thereby indicating they were attached to their humans.

Forgive me for sounding snarky but anyone who lives with cats, who loves their cats and who spends time with their feline furiends could have told you all of this. Evidently humans are not always so great at seeing the obvious.

 

 

The Fabulous “Failure”

The Female Human has always lived with multiple cats. Three seemed to be the magic number. This was the state of her happy home when she was asked to foster two kittens who just happened to be me and my brother Oliver.

She says she had some trepidation about fostering; she’d never taken care of tiny kittens. Every member of The Tribe of Five was adopted when we were weaned, spayed / neutered and ready to go to a new furever home.  Yet, despite her reservations, she knew there were two kittens that needed her so she said yes.

We Arrive

Siamese and black and white kitten, Alberto and Oliver from Feline Opines

The accommodations she provided were excellent. We took over the very large guest bathroom and with all our needs considered, a litter box, a play area, snuggly beds and lots of kitten approved toys.  Our arrival created quite a bit of interest among the established Tribe members and they were less than enthused when The Female Human disappeared into that room that was now off limits to them.

The Female Human took to fostering quite well.  She learned where to find the best organic goat’s milk to feed us, what kitten food was best when we were ready to eat solid and what things enriched the environment of two curious little felines.

We Weasel Ourselves Into Her Heart

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We could tell immediately that The Female Human was a softie. She fell in love with us in a nanosecond. She was so besotted that she even brought in a mini iPad for us with kitty games.  We made sure to crawl all over her and purr as loud as little kittens can purr whenever she came to visit us and, when we began to have supervised visits in the rest of the house we were on our best behavior.

The Rest, As They Say, Is History

I think she knew long before she admitted it to anyone else, that Oliver  and I were there to stay, We sometimes heard her mumble under her breath, “Five cats, FIVE CATS?? I am officially part of the crazy cat lady society. What will everyone think?” Thank goodness her heart overrode her head and she gave in, officially adding us to the now Tribe of Five.

I remember the first time she fed us all at once and she looked at the five furry bodies enjoy their evening soft food. She put her hands to her face and exclaimed, “That’s a lot of cats!”

Fabulous Foster Failure

We’ve been in our home for almost three years now and The Female Human has fully embraced the fact that she shares her home with five felines. Where she used to whisper “Five” under her breath when people asked her how many cats she had, she now throws her shoulders back and states proudly and loudly, “FIVE!”.

Our Female Human is very competitive and obsessive about completing tasks successfully. There is only one “failure” she has proudly embraced and that is being a foster failure. She seems to think she has the foster thing down now and might be able to foster again but we’ve advised her that if she isn’t prepared for a Tribe of Seven, she might want to wait a bit.

I hope you humans will consider fostering, whether you fail or not. There are so many resources to help you figure it all out, through your local shelter and even a free online course at Maddie’s University from Maddie’s Fund. Maddie’s University offers a module, Foster Caregiver Training – Kittens and Puppies that gives you clear and complete guidelines for things like bottle feeding, fostering and socializing unsocial kittens, transitioning to solid food and much more. And if you decide you want to champion fostering for your local shelter, Maddie’s Online University has a course to teach you how to create and grow successful cat foster programs.

FFF

Oliver and I say two paws up for humans who foster and we encourage you to try it. What’s the worst that could happen?  You might just add a few new loving members to your tribe and become a member of FFF (Fabulous Foster Failures). If you’re a FFF, please feel free to use this badge and let your fabulous foster failure experience be known to the world.

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