Walk Through The Web Wednesday 10/27

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Happy Last Week of October Furiends,
This was quite a busy week. The Human attended the annual conference of #The Cat Writers Association and BOY did she learn a lot. The Tribe was uninterested in hanging around the computer (it was a virtual conference) so while she sat at her desk and scribbled notes, we enjoyed the beautiful view from our office.

“Hey, I thought there were squirrels down there.” – Alberto
“Alberto, the squirrel is hanging around the bird feeder, you guys spent some quality time making fools of yourselves trying to intimidate him from the dining room window.” – Lily
“Sigh, Human when will you be done? I’m getting bored!” – Alberto
“How can you guys be bored with that beautiful view?” – The Human
“Hey, it’s me Oliver, under your desk. I’m getting faint from hunger. Will there be any treats forthcoming?”

Okay, purrhaps it wasn’t as bad as we’re making it out to be and we are proud to announce that we won a Muse Medallion this year!!

Well, time for the news and for us to finish working on our contest announcements for Friday.

Humane Fort Wayne holding Feline Fall Festival to build 300 shelters for community cats

I love when you humans get together and do something for kitties who don’t have forever homes. Humane Ft. Wayne in Indiana is inviting the public to help assemble shelters for community cats at their annual Feline Fall Festival. They will be building 300 outdoor shelters to keep their local felines warm and safe.

Humane Ft. Wayne estimates that there are 16,000 community cats living in the area. If you live near this shelter I hope you’ll help out but, if it’s too far, there are other shelters in different cities doing the same thing. If your city is doing shelters for community cats, meow about it in the comments and let the folks in your area know.

Century-old photos of cats dressed in human clothes shows people have been humiliating their pets for years

Oh my whiskers! I thought this costume thing was a method of modern humans to mock and embarrass their felines and now I find out, you’ve been doing this for years!

The book, Kittens and Cats: A First Reader was a hit with children of the day who loved reading about, Queen Cat, Dunce Cat, Granny Gray, and Party Cat.

The book was meant to be read aloud, and is about a feline kingdom whose inhabitants are getting ready for a fabulous party thrown by the Queen.

One kitten in the book boasts,  “I’m the only cat in our country who has an automobile.” I guess the other poor kitties had to walk to the pawty.

The photographer didn’t receive credit in the book but it’s believed that Harry Whittier Frees, famous for his kitten photography, took the photos. Lest you worry that kittens were harmed during the shoot, it was said of Frees that he had “great patience and invariable kindness”.

The book was meant to be educational. The back of the book says that children would be taught 600 vocabulary words and teachers were advised to conduct classes by “assigning a cat character to each child, having them read in order the text devoted to their special character. The children should impersonate the different cats and tell their tales to amuse the Queen, who sits on her throne,” the author recommended.

This book is now in the public domain and you can read it online at Archive.org and even download it.

This feline is still no fan of costumes for cats, even for educational purrposes!

Behind the Spooky Eyes of Cats

ILLUSTRATION: TOMASZ WALENTA

Have you noticed that around Halloween, humans like to post photos of their felines making the cat’s eyes look creepy? Well, Physicist Helen Czerski has some interesting things to say about our eyes (and by the way, our eyes aren’t creepy at all!)

First she says the pupil of the eye is the gatekeeper. Light has to pass through the pupil to reach the back of the eye where the light sensitive cells are located.

Cats have vertical slit-shaped pupils which are common in nighttime ambush predators who also need to function during the day. The muscle structure needed to open and close a slit-shaped pupil is simple. That means we felines can narrow our slits to the tiniest sliver, and then open them up in the dark until they’re round. Domestic cats are able to change the area of our pupils (and therefore the light it lets in) by a factor of 135.  You humans are only able to change yours by a factor of 15.  That means we see much better in the dark than you do.

Felines have a narrow pupil in the horizontal direction but a wide pupil in the vertical direction. Anything  along the horizontal plane is in beautiful sharp focus but  the image will be more blurred in the vertical direction. At the right focal length, the image will be perfectly in focus in both directions, and that gives the cat an extra way of judging distance. The slit gives the cat a second way of doing this (the other is the stereo images from both eyes, which is how humans judge distance); the two complement each other to produce pinpoint accuracy.  Well, that just goes to show you that we felines have amazing eyes.

So there you go, another amazing fact about the wonderful felines that live in your house!

Every kitty needs an advent calendar

As you can see, we are ready to get in the holiday spirit and a good part of that is having The Human get us an advent calendar to count down the days. We found some great ones for this year.

Fancy Feast has a fancy advent calendar this year. It has 24 flavors that include classics as well as new, limited edition holiday recipes like Yuletide Turkey Feast in Gravy and Hearthside Salmon Platter with Pumpkin and Spinach Pate. Just think of your human opening a can of this goodness for you every morning during Advent! The calendar is $24.99 and you can find it at Amazon, Chewy, Walmart and more.

Since Oliver is on a D-I-E-T The Human is not so enthusiastic about extra treats, which is why she likes the idea of the Merry & Bright Holiday Feline So Festive with Cat Toys 25-Day Advent Calendar. This calendar has 25 Christmas themed toys and sells for $17.00.

Staying on the theme of no-calorie advent goodies, the  Merry Makings 12-Days of Thrills Cat Toy Advent Calendar is another winner. This one comes with just 12 toys and the cost is $13.00.

Our Lily wants this one because it’s called  Lily’s Kitchen Christmas Cat Advent Calendar. There are 24 meaty gourmet treats of many flavors for the refined feline palate, such as chicken with liver and turkey with cranberry, The cost is $32.00

If you want snacks that will help you retain your girlish (or boyish) figure then you’ll love Snif-Snax Holiday Cat Advent Calendar, Atlantic Salmon and Seaweed . This one is a real bargain, with 73 treats that are divided into 25 snack filled days of ocean delights for $10.00.

If you’re one of the lucky felines who don’t have to worry about your physique, Scrumbles Cat Advent Calendar is for you. The British based company packs this calendar with a variety of natural, healthy treats. They also give 50p (about 69 cents) per purchase to Woods Green The Animals Charity for the cats and kittens they help there. This organization has been around since 1924 and is one of the UK’s largest pet charities. They have a converted farm in Godmanchester that’s purpose-built, ready to help dogs, cats and more animals. This calendar costs $33.00 and has a variety of healthy, meaty treats for 24 days.

Lucky the Black Cat Went From Being Abandoned to One of the Most Handsome Felines on Instagram

I would be remiss if I didn’t do a feature on a black cat for the month of October.  I love this black cat named Lucky who is a hit on Instagram. He went from feral to fancy and is now living his best life. He has a signature look for his Instagram photos which includes dark shades and he’d never be caught at a photo shoot without them.

You can read Lucky’s story in the article and also get some tips from his purrsonal photographers about how they get those great shots of him. Black cats rock!

Walk Through The Web Wednesday 10/2

siamese cat on a leash walking through a garden

Hello There Furiends,
Another week another Wednesday. I have nothing exciting to report from our neck of the woods but I do have a bit of a rant to share with you. It appears to me that The Female Human does not apurreciate all that I do around the house, nor am I properly respected by my fellow felines.

Case in point. I am always “Johnny on the spot” when it comes to helping around the house. Here you can see that I have taken time away from my important profession of feline blogging and writing to lend a paw in the kitchen and still, The Female Human does not show the proper apurreciation.

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“Yeah, looks like the dishwasher missed a few spots with the cutlery. You might want to run these through again.”

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“Well EXCUSE ME for trying to help around the house. Sheesh, what’s a cat got to do to get some apurreciation around here.”

And it hasn’t been any better with my feline family either. Just the other night I sauntered into the kitchen to enjoy my dinner and this is what I found.

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“Whoops, sorry dude, I didn’t think you were coming for dinner.” Oliver

After the week I’d had, I figured when The Female Human came home and parked her purse on the counter I would be welcome to snoop through it and what a discovery I  made!

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“Yum, what’s that delicious smell in there?”

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“Oh happy day look what I foiund!”

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“Nom. nom,nom…”

I hope you all had a better week than I did and I hope you enjoy this week’s Wednesday web wanderings.
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Special feline parlays her unusual looks into creating a non-profit

Maya

Do you know what kind of humans I admire most? Those who adopt older shelter cats or cats with special needs. The ones who take their kindness a step farther and help others are the cat’s meow!

Maya the cat is a special and wonderful feline and although her eyes are asymmetrical and her legs are short she is loved and she’s making a difference in the world. Maya was born with an extra chromosome, which means she doesn’t have peripheral vision and which gives her a unique look.

Maya was almost euthanized in a Virginia shelter after she was found beside a dumpster behind a Chinese restaurant. By the time she was taken to the shelter she was very sick. After three months at the shelter, Maya was scheduled to be euthanized but Odd Cat Sanctuary MA rescued her. They then posted her on their website. Her human, Lauren Beader and her fiancé, Harrison Makofsky saw her and ran over to adopt her. They didn’t just give her a loving forever home but they also made her an Instagram star.

Now they’ve leveraged Maya’s fame into great charitable works and a non-profit.

Maya’s humans wrote a children’s book last year and donated all the proceeds to Odd Cat Sanctuary MA and the Special Olympics, Massachusetts and that turned into the humans (and Maya, of course) creating the non profit organization, AllWorthy.

Maya is the face of the new organization that educates about and promotes disability inclusion and acceptance.  She lives with her humans and her fur sister, Dragon, whose back legs are paralyzed. I think the partnership between Maya and her humans is absolutely purrfect!

Bohdi, the all season adventure cat from the Rockies

Bodhi

Oh how I admire adventure cats! Granted, Oliver and I do stroll around our garden and neighborhood but this cat, Bodhi, is a hardcore, fearless adventure feline! Bodhi hikes the Canadian Rockies with his human and he has an Instagram account that chronicles his adventures so more timid kitties can live vicariously through his photos.

Bodhi’s human says his training took a lot of patience but now Bodhi is an all season adventure cat. In the summer he sometimes exchanges his harness for a life vest for paddle boarding and swimming. Lest you think Bodhi’s human is not aware that there are big animals out there in the wilderness, she says that Bodhi will sense the presence of another creature and let her know he wants to go to his safe spot on her shoulders.

Mother and daughter sew pillows for shelter cats

Pillows

You humans who come up with creative ideas to help shelter kitties are heroes! In Tunkhannock, PA an 88 year-old woman and her daughter have been making pillows for the Meshoppen Cat Rescue.    The kitties love the pillows that keep them cozy, warm and comforted and they help the humans too. Bertha Singer, the 88-year old mother has early-onset dementia and keeping her hands busy helps keep her mind active.  These ladies deserve a Paws Up Award!Paws Up award by FelineOpines.net for humans who do amazing things for cats

 

Trader Joe’s Advent calendars are on the way

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Our Female Human is German and one of her favorite things about Christmas is Advent calenders. She likes to make them and buy them for the adults and kids she knows. So I got to thinking, “Hey, what about us felines?!” I decided to do some research on this and found out that Trader Joe’s is coming out with a feline Advent calendar this year (let’s not discuss the fact that they’ve had a canine Advent calendar for a while). Then I thought, “What if you don’t have a Trader Joe’s near your house?” (our closest is two hours away) and so I checked on Amazon and sure enough there were all kinds. So I say, humans (especially those of you of German or Austrian origin) no more excuses, get your felines their own Advent calendar!

Slay dragons, help cats

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This is for all you feline loving gamers. Now you can sit in front of the monitor or TV, slay virtual dragons and earn money for cats. From October 3 to December 9, ZeniMax will donate $1.00 for every five dragons killed in the Elder Scrolls Online game. The money will be given to the Best Friends Animal Society and Four Paws Charities. Zenimax is committed to donating up to $200,000.00 in the Slay the Dragons, Save the Cats campaign.  Humans, fire up your online game and start killing dragons for a good cause!