Understanding your cat..

I enter the room and Torah rises from her bed. She greets me for the first time with a welcome headbump on my legs. Marking me by saying; “You are now mine- I trust you.” I smile down at her and greet her with gentle pets. Her fur still feels coarse and unhealthy. I know she has a long way to go yet.

I set down her food. I have pureed for her some fancy feast, fish oil, L-Lysine and Nancy’s yogurt. She takes a few laps and then backs away. That is when the pacing begins.

The room isn’t small by any means. Our bedroom contains three dressers, one California King bed, An end table and a huge closet. She paces the entire room back and forth, much like a lion in a small cage at the zoo. She doesn’t step on the persian rug though. She stops right at the edge and demands my attention (I am making the bed) a loud meow says “Mom look! Pay Attention!” I walk over to her (I am on the rug) That is when I hear the crunch of kibble under my feet. She has overturned her plate of dry food in the night. The kibble blends with the rug so it is not noticeable until you step on it. I find it annoying and I am only barefoot! How she must feel being without any protection on her paws. I quickly sweep it up leaving her a clean path to her bed.

Pace…pace…pace… all around the room yet again. I change the litter pans though they were just changed yesterday. That wasn’t it. I change her bedding…..nope- not that either. This is the most active I have seen Torah and her tail is now switching with anger. I am left wondering- what in the world set this all off?

Then I remember the food. I pureed it because her mouth is riddled with sores and I know it must hurt to chew.

I fetch up the bowl of slop and replace it with just canned food and a bit of water. She goes over to it and bends down to eat. So much for babying this courageous cat!

By the time I am done tidying the room, she has settled in her bed. I stop to pet her and tell her how sorry I am for being such a dunce and not “getting” it right away. She looks up at me and headbumps my arm. For now, all is forgiven and I leave her in peace shutting the door on my way out. She needs no more stress in her life right now and there is a line of curious kitties outside the bedroom door wanting to meet her. That may come in time….

Wobbly Greeting

She greets me on wobbly legs, carefully making her way across the tiled floor. Her gait is reminescent of Guinevere. Her sides gently heave. One would think she just ran across the pasture full-tilt, instead of walking a short distance to say hello.

She loves tuna juice! I introduced her to this delicacy tonight. Although I know that it is not the best thing for her to have, eating anything at this point is a victory.

Will she be here next week? The vet’s prognosis is she is in “fair” condition, so time will tell.

For now, she gets a gentle hug and a kiss on top of a head no longer covered with fleas. I tuck her back into her blankets and turn the heating pad on-time for her to sleep yet again.


The vet said we might lose the battle, but he wants to continue to fight the war. I am now giving her vitamins to help her overcome her anemia. Bless “uncle Ben” he didn’t charge me for the visit or the meds.

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She sleeps so hard…

In the mornings when I slip into the bedroom and see Torah just lying there, I have to first check and see if she is still breathing. Once she enters the realm of sleep, it takes an act of Congress to wake her up.

I look at her skinny body, how she trembles when she is awake, and even now on the third day after her bath, her fur is still clumpy and sticky looking like she has gotten into Pooh’s honey pot.

She is eating some, she is peeing like a racehorse, but I haven’t found any solids in the pans. I suspect she doesn’t have the energy yet to pass anything, plus her body is so depleted that she has nothing to give the litter box gods at this time.

I wonder, am I doing this cat any favors by keeping her alive? Not that I enjoy making those types of decisions, but I don’t wish to be the type of person who keeps a cat alive for other reasons other than there is hope she will recover. I don’t know if she can overcome the abuse and neglect she has suffered.

In the night, she has moved off the heating pad and taken up a nest on top of the scratching platform. Because of her depleted state, I am still keeping the heater in the bedroom fired up to a higher level. I added more pet fountains in the room today as she is still a bit dehydrated- but again, her skin is tissue paper thin and when I gave her sub cu’s last night, it was horrible. I turned her into a sprinkler and she yowled her discontent to the world. She has NO body reserves at all- nothing for the needle to get into as she is still skin and bones. Poor, sweet girl. I may take her in tomorrow to see Ben and get his thoughts on her. He has always shot straight with me and if he tells me the time is up, then I will leave her for the angels. I cannot understand how ANYONE can declaw- let alone four paw declaw! I just want to find her original owner and chase them till their heels smoke!

New Beginnings

Thatcher and Sawyer went to a new home yesterday. Sawyer settled right in, rubbing his face all over the woman’s white carpet! LOL I think he was shocked to find a home that wasn’t frequented by other cats. He and Thatch will be the only pets in the home and they have their own little boy who is looking forward to having them sleep with him.

The home is just minutes away from where I live, so I can check in with them periodically to see how it goes.

Today, I am taking a newcomer Cyrus into the vet and also taking in Mercedes. She had been ready for an adoptive home, but as it does happen, she got into a bit of trouble the day before her adoption was finalized. I took a deeply imbedded claw out of the middle of her forehead a few days ago and now she has major eye issues. I suspect the two events are related.

The woman wanting to adopt her, once she found out about the impending possible vet bills- has declined adopting her…sigh…But at least I found out before I sent her there, heaven knows whatever else would have been denied to her financially.

I have an appointment this morning to take the two cats in. I am going to have Cyrus scanned and hope that he has a chip- although I know this is not likely. But, I can always hope. he appeared in a trap when I set it to trap a pesky coon. In the morning, this gorgeous white and mackeral tabby was inside and he is so friendly and loving. Someone is hopefully missing him so perhaps I can find his owner. I have already knocked on a dozen doors on our road asking if they know who he belongs to. No one is claiming him.

Mercedes has been in the carrier most of the morning. She isn’t feral, but she is uncooperative and I knew if I didn’t capture her at feeding time, I wouldn’t be able to get close to her. The vet visit is going to be “interesting” to say the least.

Just thoughts…

He sleeps longer and longer each day and that worries me. No longer up at the crack of dawn and ready to face another day, he lays in his recliner with a towel over his face (if I am listening to the Today Show) Sometimes, I lean over and check that he is still breathing, that is how bad the diabetes is getting for us.

He goes to the gym today and I am sure he won’t be able to walk by the time he comes home. He can barely get to the back door without wheezing like a 90 year old. I can’t imagine what will happen once the personal trainer starts to work with him. I have told the trainer everything I can about Mike’s current health and left the number for FireMed just in case.

If he was a cat, I could help him, but he is a grown and stubborn old man. We had a huge and dumb fight the other day. We hardly have fought in the over 20 years that we have been married, but this one was a bad one, born of the struggle of living with the disease and sitting by watching him cram chocolates and puddings in his mouth when his blood sugar drops. I said some awful things even if they were truthful they should have never been said. But I wonder how someone who has been carrying around all this weight over half of his life can settle for that type of living? And that is what I shouted at him among other things. He no longer has the stamina to help me around the house and I barely have the energy anymore to do anything other than scoop litter pans and make the bed.

I am worried about so much, his health, possibly losing our home, staying alive in this economy now that he isn’t working his knives. The stress mounts and only recedes after a kitty visits me and purrs in my ear to tell me it will all work out.

I think of this gentle man and look at his struggles and wonder what God is trying to teach us here? As each day begins, his hands start to work less, his mind is slipping and he can barely hear me anymore. He went to get his hearing tested yesterday only to find out that hearing aids are out of our price range. So my major conversations are with the cats.

McKinley was out on the porch this morning, such a beautiful boy. He is so large now- as he is part Maine Coon. He is gray and white, long hair and he had berry bushes stuck in his fur. I brushed his soft fur and he growled but he allowed it. Most of the berry bushes have been removed and he is stretched out on the chair purring and kneading the pillow (last time I looked).

I am grateful for this life. For my best friend, my husband even with the health issues. The vows did say “in sickness and in health.” I am grateful for the cats who keep me calm and centered, I am grateful for the job I have even if I am “under-employed.” I am chasing good thoughts today trying to push the negative ones aside. I just wanted to put my thoughts somewhere else besides my head.

I hear a ruckus upstairs and something has fallen. I suspect Charlie and Baker are colliding. Two strong alpha purrsonalities, they often race up and down the stairs chasing each other knocking over anything in their way. From the sound of the crash, I suspect the baby gate I store upstairs has fallen over. Guess I better go and see if there are any casualities.

Covered in Cats

I have been off work now for a couple of days. Yesterday with every intention of cleaning my house, I sat down on the couch in the morning to enjoy my coffee. Immediately, Sharky, Chaplain, Phoebe and Slim jumped up and settled on my lap, chest and legs. I was buried in cats and could barely move.

Mike walked by and looked over and joked “Do you need any more cats? I think I can find a few for you.” Such a funny man NOT! I told Mike that I needed to get up and get started on the laundry and clean up the house. He just shook his head and walked off chuckling. So what did I do yesterday? I slept, sitting on the couch, most of the day covered in cats. Not a very productive day to be sure, but definitely well-needed.

Cat Enclosure Enema

A dear friend of mine, when she talks about spring cleaning she says it is like giving her house an enema. So today, I decided to give the cat enclosure a much-needed enema of its own. I threw out all the litter pans, all the bedding, tossed out all the straw- even though I do not suspect that the virus lives out there. I believe it is confined to the house. I tore down the outside drapings that kept the cold weather from coming through and brought in more second-hand furniture for the cats to climb on. I have to say it looks pretty good out there. With the new litter pans it took five bags of Stall Dry to fill them and I had to laugh when Barnum and Sharkey decided to play in the nice, clean sand.

There have been no new passings here and I am still holding my breath hoping the worst is really behind us now.

Mercedes is going to a new home in a week. She is an older cat, she is the pariah and the people adopting her have no other cats so she should be just fine. She goes in for her booster right before she leaves here and I hope for her a long and happy life with her new forever family.

Mike is upset and says we shouldn’t adopt any of our kittens or cats out because they are comfortable with us and happy here. What is he nuts? Feeding 19 cats in this economy is a juggling act at best. Add to that the other neccessities of life that cats need and it does get a bit spendy. I think he is afraid that the adopted families will give up on the cats or kittens much like the last one did. I don’t know what type of experience Barnum went through that prompted him to pee on the master bed, but since he has returned here, I have only had one problem with him; he won’t let me out of his sight! Mike says he cries when I go to work, and the minute I come home, he runs in and claims my lap.

It was a drop-dead gorgeous day today for a little while until the storm came in. The sun was out the majority of the day and I was able to be out in the sunshine (although it was really cold) enjoying the day with Mike. It felt like March instead of Feb.

Our wedding anniversary approaches- 23 years. Mike asked me what I wanted and I told him what I didn’t want- another kitten! LOL