The Day his Purr Stopped

Life has become crazy beyond description, and not in a good way, unfortunately.

Well, ok, some things are not horrible, such as my novel Beyond Every Mirror, which is doing ok in sales and getting great reviews. A few missed editing errors cost me a few stars in a couple reviews, but all editing errors have been fixed, so that shouldn’t be an issue anymore. It’s difficult to have to do it all by yourself; publishing… Self-publishing is a difficult endeavor. My goal is to get back to traditional publishing (where I don’t have to pay for an editor, etc). Fortunately, as I do professional editing, I am able for the most part to edit my own books, but it’s easy to miss things. Hence, once I can afford it, an outside editor will be hired. Cover design as well I have so far done myself, and as a professional photographer (I am just a ‘Jill of all Trades’ lol) I know enough graphic design to do a fairly decent cover (apparently, since my cover for Beyond Every Mirror is up for a cover design award) and I am studying graphic design daily to learn more and more tricks for making really cool covers.

As for the craziness in my life, if you love cats, you will sympathize. Two of my mother’s cats have become ill. Not related. Fluffy Kitty, a gorgeous and large 19 lb Silver Maine Coon I rescued when he showed up one terrible winter and started sleeping on the love seat on my porch. He was un-neutered and gorgeous. Not expecting to keep him, as I already had a house full of foster and rescued felines, I named him, simply “Fluffy Kitty” due to his heavy coat. He turned out to be the absolute epitome of the indoor cat! Once he was neutered, tested and inoculated, he was inside and PURRRfectly happy. The most loving cat I have ever met (and that is a LOT of cats). He is obsessed with always being in laps and his purr never stops.

Day before yesterday, however, his purr stopped.

He acted lethargic, disoriented. He was at the vet hospital all yesterday and today we transferred him to a veterinary neurologist. A month or so ago, he developed a severe infection behind his right eye. I think this is somehow related, even though they were able to cure the infection at the time, I believe some was deep and left behind, thus working into his brain somehow. Vets have agreed with me, but he’s getting an MRI tomorrow to be sure and see if there’s something underlying.

His best friend, Humphries, also saw the vet yesterday due to not eating and vomiting bile. His issue, as I knew, was due to bad teeth. Easy fix. With my mother also in the hospital today, this was a most stressful day! The “saving grace” of the day, if you can call it such, was twofold: My novel, Beyond Every Mirror, received a good review through the most important review company in the world! And my mother received a clean bill of health. But, the worry over Fluffy Kitty (not to mention the expense) is beyond stressful.

Bookwise, I will have “Sands of Time: Extended Special Edition” will be out soon all over the place, in all ebook formats and paperback.

In the meantime, if you love romance fantasy pick up a copy of Beyond Every Mirror. You will be pleased that you did.

 

Watch my website for contests and giveaways!

 

 

 

 

 


Rock Stars and Their Cats

They spend the majority of their lives on the road, touring through grueling schedules, sleeping in buses and hotels, living out of suitcases. Yet, still, they find time for cats! Even rock stars, regardless of their professional reputation, have and love those masters of relaxation. And who better to need the calming benefits of a purr than those with so much stress in their every day life?

For Great Photos and Info on Rock Stars and their cats, please visit, http://www.examiner.com/article/rock-stars-and-their-cats

 

Rock Stars Love Cats for a great slideshow!

If you love cats, fantasy and rock music, you may just love this book… https://www.facebook.com/pages/Beyond-Every-Mirror/435381586537350?fref=nf


Cool Cats

Check out these cats that got famous for their unusual markings. Have a cat with unique markings or look? Let me know.

 

Cat with Eyebrows:

cat-markings-1-2

Kitten with Heart:

Kitten with heart

Kitten with heart

 

Split Face:

Cat with split color face

Cat with split color face

Another cat with heart:

Heart on chin

Heart on chin

This cat has a monkey on its back:

This cat has a monkey on her back.

This cat has a monkey on her back.

Cat on cat:

This cat dons fantastic art work of another cat on its back.

This cat dons fantastic art work of another cat on its back.

More photos of cat on cat back

More photos of cat on cat back


My Indoor Cat is Missing; Diary of Binx

Binx is missing

Binx is missing.

Day One, Friday, May 17th 2013: I woke up late because I had to drive a long distance and spend three days doing a horse show photo shoot. When I awoke, my mother came in my room and told me she “saw a cat who looks just like Binx” on the porch and then up by the fireplace in the back yard. It was then she informed me she couldn’t find Binx in the house. I got up and we searched. The back door would, if not closed properly, not latch all the way. The cat she saw was Binx, not a cat who looked like him.

Now we had a major problem. Not only was Binx an indoor-only cat his entire adult life (three and a half years), he was born a feral kitten who had had no contact with humans in the first 8 weeks of his life. A cat who has not had that contact never fully accepts humans. Binx accepted us, as he lived in our house and let us pet him, slept on my bed and would even rub against my leg. However, if even I–the person he most trusted–made a move he found suspicious, he would always run. “Can I really trust you?” lived forever in his eyes, as it does with all cats born feral.

I searched the woods behind our house, the neighbor’s yards, up trees, everywhere I could. No sign of him. As a volunteer for a cat shelter, I was able to borrow a cat trap, which I baited and set on the porch in case Binx came home during the night looking for food. I also brushed Binx’s best cat friend, Jake, and placed his fur around the parameter of the yard.

I slept on the sofa on the porch, hoping my scent would help, or at least I would spot him.

Day Two, Saturday, May 18th: Had to do the photo shoot, so I spent most of the day away. Caught nothing in the trap. I borrowed a second trap to put up in the back near the woods. I needed to expand my search. I also made up a bunch of flyers and went door to door in the areas that surrounded the woods, talking to people and asking if they would contact me if they saw Binx. Everyone was very nice. But no one had seen him.

Binx’s un-trusting nature towards humans, I knew, would make this much more difficult than a trusting house pet. I slept on the porch again. At the very least it helped keep the raccoons away from my trap.

Day Three, Sunday, May 19th: Expanded my search area and tried to spread my scent to lead Binx back home. He had to be getting hungry. Still nothing in the traps. I made more flyers, including a large one for telephone poles, and brought the files to be professionally printed at Staples. I had the large ones laminated so they would be waterproof. It rained, which made me wonder how Binx was handling this, as he had not seen rain in his entire adult life. The rain did not frighten me, however, the thunder did. It would scare Binx. Would he run farther away?

Day Four, Monday, May 20th: Caught a raccoon in the trap nearest the house, but no cat. I reset the trap. The rain just didn’t want to stop! Thunderstorms, heat and humidity every day. Ninety one degrees!

I am still having trouble eating, my stomach is in so many knots. I walked all around the woods within a mile of my house. But the woods are dense and vast. He could be anywhere. I passed out more flyers. I tacked a bunch of the big laminated flyers on telephone poles at every intersection within a two mile radius.

Day Five, Tuesday, May 21st: More of the same today. Cooler temperatures, but still rainy and thunderstorms. As I had done daily, I walked the woods when it wasn’t raining, talked to people, passed out flyers and put lost cat ads on the internet and in papers.

Day Six, Wednesday, May 22nd: Continued looking through the woods and adding flyers to my search area. It was rainy today so I didn’t get as much searching done through the woods, but I did walk up back and look under a few porches and sheds of neighboring properties. By now, people are pretty used to seeing me searching through their yards.

Both traps were tripped, food was gone from one, yet nothing was inside. The neighbor’s cat (Tigger) is a tiny little girl, so I am assuming it was her. Later in the day, I was proven correct when I came home and a neighbor drove by with his ATV to tell me there was a grey cat in the trap behind his house. I asked him “Dark grey or light grey?” When he said light grey, I knew it was Tigger. She was scared, I let her go.

Got a call from a lady who lives about 5 miles away, swearing she saw Binx. She said she would try to feed and lure the cat in. I have big doubts Binx would be that far in the opposite direction that he had gone, plus he would have had to cross a highway and several roads to get there. Not that I am dismissing any lead. I told her to call me if she sees the cat again.

I started a Facebook page to raise awareness of Binx in hopes more people will keep their eyes open for him, regardless where they live. I just want my Binx home!

Day Seven, Thursday, May 23rd: 7am, my mother wakes me to tell me there’s a raccoon in the trap closest to the woods. She can’t climb the fence to get out there, so I went out, in the rain, in my PJs, climbed the fence, and had to pick up the trap and dump the frightened raccoon out. He scrambled up a tree.

Seriously thinking about hiring a pet detective to help me find Binx. The problem is that I am poor and not sure I can afford one. I looked up quite a few online today. I just want my baby home. I don’t know how long I can handle this stress, fear and anguish.


Territorial Marking: Cat Be Gone?

Roger needed to reclaim his territory

The number one reason cats are given away is due to urinating in places other than the litter box. There can be so many reasons for this and so many ways to stop it, I could write an entire book just on this topic alone.

However, the other day my brother brought his cat home (for the second time) and the cat started to immediately urinate all over the house. Everywhere. To get behind the reason for this, first you have to know the back story.

My brother, Correy, adopted his fluffy orange male cat from me as a foster for a Connecticut shelter (CT Cat Connections) for whom I volunteer. The cat came to me as “Sophie,” a pregnant female. I questioned the friend who brought the cat to me; “You sure this is a female??” I asked. The cat had a head the size of a lion and the most masculine looking face I’d ever seen. I was assured this cat was a pregnant female and I didn’t feel like fiddling through the massive orange fur to check so I took their word for it.
Two months went by and no kittens. Finally, I decided to check. Not only was this cat NOT a pregnant female. HE was a neutered male. By this point, my brother had fallen for the loving cat, who by now was living amongst all my other cats and doing great. So, he adopted him.
Roger, as Correy renamed him…more aptly I might add, settled in quickly. Correy and his wife had 3 other cats: Bella, Gilligand and FC (for Fat Cat). Bella and Gilligan are bother young cats around 2 years of age that they had gotten when they were kittens. FC, however, was an elderly man who had come from my sister-in-law’s previous home in Michigan. FC had a bad habit of urinating outside the litter box, particularly on area rugs, which were fortunately portable and washable. Puppy pee pads were put down in other areas where he liked to go.
Everything went along great for several months until FC began to get very ill. At this point, Roger took it upon himself to try and play veterinarian and put the sickly cat out of his misery; he began attacking, viciously.
My brother and his wife wanted FC’s last days on this earth to be pleasant (it turned out he had stomach cancer, but was still holding his own), so back to our house came Roger, temporarily. He fit right back in with my brood and settled in as if he hadn’t left.
Two months later, FC passed away and Roger went home. The first thing he did was urinate all over the house! My brother contacted me in a panic. So, I explained it to him. The first part of this is simple; Roger needed to reclaim his territory. Secondly, he could still smell FC in the house and, not knowing the cat was gone, only exacerbated the issue.
This is not a common situation, but territorial marking is a common occurance! I told my brother that once Roger had his territory restaked, he would stop. Correy had only to keep a bottle of enzymatic cat urine remover handy. Plus, they were soon to be re-painting the home’s interior, and that would help as well, as it would give a fresh scent to the home that doesn’t smell like any of the cats. They will all have a chance to acclimate to the new scents as the painting is done and no one will feel a need to be territorial.
Roger stopped marking by that afternoon. That was even quicker than I had planned, but a good thing. He wasn’t known to be a sprayer anywhere else so I knew this would not be a permanent behavior. In FC’s case, urinating outside the box had been a habit he had developed a long time before (probably due to the fact he had been declawed. Indescriminate urination is common when cats are declawed). Once psraying or urinating in specific locations is developed, it can be hard to stop. But, in Roger’s case, this was not normal for him. So, I was able to assure my brother itr was only temporary.
So, remember, if your cat is doing something bad. He has a reason! Don’t give him up. Find out what they reason is and what can be done. Is it temporary? It could be something that a slight change can fix as well. You wouldn’t give up your human child simply because of bad behavior, would you? Well, would you? (By the way, if you would, then you better not have kids…or cats!)

New Pregnant Foster Needs a Name

New Cat

She needs a name

So my friend Kristin brought me a new cat yesterday. She has no name yet and I am taking suggestions. She is very shy. She likes to stay hidden in her carrier or under something. Right now she is on medication for upper respiratory and worms. To get even this one photo I had to open the door of the foster room carefully and she started to walk curiosly towards the door. Otherwise, when I step in the room she runs into her carrier, which I leave for her to feel comfortable.

She is a very small girl, maybe 5 or 6 pounds. I don’t think she is very far along in her pregnancy because she doesn’t have that balloon appearance to her yet.

I don’t know her story yet but when I get it I will post it. If anyone wants to suggest names, please feel free. I will take all names into consideration.

Thanks.

More photos of her to come.


Ariel and Elisabeth

This tale really begins in 1994 when I fostered a litter of kittens for Kitty Angels of CT, a non-profit, no-kill cat shelter. Two of the kittens, Sammy and Shadow, brothers who looked nothing alike, won my heart and I adopted them. They were my children, my babies. Sammy (the fluffy one) in particular tugged my heart strings hard and we had a strong bond. My brother used to joke that they would have to put me in a straight jacket if anything happened to Sammy.

Shadow lived to be 13 and passed away from cancer in 2007. This was tough on Sammy as he had lost all of his prior feline friends as well and he was, for the first time, the only cat in the house. The day after Christmas 2009, Sammy passed away in my arms. He had been slowly going downhill since his brother passed and the vet could really find nothing serious wrong. I believe he just needed to be with his brother again.

December 28, 2009; one day without a cat in my home was too much. A friend whose horse was boarded in the same stable as mine told me about a little feral kitten that had been trapped; her husband was the animal control officer and they wanted me to have the kitten. I went to see him and he was so skinny, full of fleas and worms and so scared, I took him home. He stayed hidden pretty much most of the time, but I pet him as often as possible as I worked to get rid of his parasites and put weight on him. I named him Binx, after the cat in the movie “Hocus Pocus” (although my Binx was not a black cat, but dark grey like my Shadow had been, except Binx has white paws, belly and a tiny white strip on his face). Another kitten had come to my attention. Also at the stable, the owner informed me of a cat (or kitten, she wasn’t sure) that had just appeared in the hay barn and was living amongst the bales and seemed afraid to come out, though he meowed a lot and seemed friendly enough. On January 1st 2010, I went into the hay barn and found him; a cute Maine Coon cross about 7 months old. I brought him home hoping he would help Binx to socialize. I named him Jake, after the cat from the old Disney movie “The Cat From Outer Space.” Binx and Jake were instantly best friends.

Since that day, I have fostered quite a few more cats and kittens for Kitty Angels, but I was still searching for that “one” that would make me feel as Sammy did. First, I wanted a cat that at least looked a bit like him, with his tri-color markings, cotton-soft fur and bushy tail. Though Jake was a medium hair with a bushy tail, he actually had an aloof personality, despite how vocal he was and how friendly he seemed. And Binx, well, Binx let me pet him, but he was still feral. I loved them, of course I did, but I still wanted that “special” kitten. One I could raise up from a little kitten just as I had with Sammy.

~~~~~


A female cat named Misha, with pretty fur, an adorable face, and grey and white markings a bit like Sammy’s came into the shelter in March 2010. Though I was not going to adopt her, I discovered she was pregnant and I told the shelter owner that I would foster her and maybe keep one of the kittens if I drew any special bond to one. There was no guarantee any of them would have her fur or markings, but it would be fun to foster kittens from birth anyway.

On May 3rd, 2010 Misha had her kittens. Two boys and two girls, all long haired. The 2 girls were both black and white, one with more white and the other with more black. The boys were grey and white on one and the other tiger and white. It was the most beautiful litter of kittens I have ever seen. As they grew, I knew I would adopt one of the girls, but deciding which one was tough. They had the soft fur, the look and were both born right here. I named them Ariel and Elisabeth. Ariel I named after one of my favorite TV characters and I just like the name Elisabeth.

It took close to two months, but I decided to adopt them both! Just in the nick of time, as someone was interested in maybe adopting Elisabeth. Logic told me I had in the past adopted both Sammy and Shadow, brothers who had been born on May 8th, so now I should adopt both sisters who were born on May 3rd.

And that is how I got Ariel and Elisabeth. I have since adopted an ex-barn cat and a foster of mine who came to me as a pet that had been thrown out to fend for himself and had lived on his own so long and had sustained so much abuse he was vicious. Now, he is one of the sweetest cats I have ever owned. It’s amazing what love will do for an animal!

Ariel
 


Elisabeth

 
 

Ariel (lower left), Elisabeth (middle bottom)
The 2 brothers, Specs (behind Misha) and Ewok
(next to Elisabeth) were both adopted together.

 


Fosters & Lost and Pound Pets on Ch. 3

Scotty is doing very well. As a matter of fact, he is ready to be adopted. I have had several people in petting him and even picking him up with no hissing, no scratching, no biting… only purrs and wanting more pets. He has become quite the amazing love. So, Scotty is now looking for a new home. He has to be either an only-cat or with a less dominant
cat. He gets along well with my non-aggressive and over-friendly cat, Jake. He can also not going into a home with young children, and preferably no dogs.
Stress tends to revert him back to his wild state, but as long as he has plenty of alone time and only gentle pets, he is just fantastic. He sleeps between my boyfriend and I like a child who needs to be with his parents.

Scotty was a throw-away. He was a pet, but the woman who had him and several others tossed him when her house was foreclosed on. He became so wild, the vets who neutered him tipped his ear to mark him feral. But he is anything but. He was just misunderstood. If you know anyone
interested in Scotty, please contact Kitty Angels of Connecticut.

On an unrelated note,
Eyewitness 3 has a site called Eyewitness Pets. The site focuses on lost and found pets and offers news pertaining to pets around Connecticut. Check it out!

Please Visit
P-A-W-Shoppes for your pet needs at low prices.


Update on momma and kittens

 

Today, I brought Pricilla and the babies (who are now three weeks old) to the vet, and Ringo too.
 
They had to go up to Suffield, which is a good half hour from home, since that is the
shelter’s vet for shots, tests, etc. Poor Ringo got car sick on the way up, but
fortunately I had brought a towel.  They brought the carrier with Pricilla and her trio of cuties in first.  I waited, playing with my phone, and when she brought them back out, she apologized for taking so long and stated that everyone just had to play with the kittens. How can one result such perfection of cuteness? Three-week old kittens are extremely hard to resist.

In other news, I have a fairly new foster named Scott. I call him Scotty. He was sent to me for rehabilitation. Apparently he was abused
and quite mean. However, I found that when he is not in a cage or irritated by other cats (or people with excess petting or rough handling), he is fine. I have learned to simply read his body language very seriously.
He
loves to be pet, he simply gets hyper sensitive and
I believe what happened is that no one who handled him
ever really knew how! They would pet him until his hyper sensitivity set in and he would bite or scratch to get them to stop. They would take this as a sign of
aggression and punish him in some way, which put him in defense mode. I simply read his body language, which is quite obvious, and stop petting him before he
has a chance to get agitated. 

If you have a cat who bites or scratches, this is the
method to take. Learn to read the cat’s body language. And, for goodness sake, DON’T ever hit an aggressive cat!

Ringo was a barn cat. He was adopted by a boarder at the barn where my horse lives. He and his friend George loved to play in the indoor
arena, which spooked some horses as people rode. So, rather than face a possible liability the owner chose to give them up. A boarder took George. I took Ringo to adopt out. I wanted to keep him as he is the friendliest, sweetest cat. But,
alas, my living situation makes this impossible. Ringo is a beautiful grey mackerel tabby with the most striking markings! When he was a kitten he was hit by a car, which broke his hip on
the left side. It was never fixed and healed wrong so he walks with a bit of a limp, but it does not hinder him in any way. He is 10 months old now, and has all the love anyone could want in a cat and all the playfulness anyone could want in a kitten. Ringo needs a special diet with low magnesium only (he is on Sience Diet, which is highly recommended by shelters
and vets), because he has had urinary problems as a kitten. As long as he stays on his diet, he is fine. I once had a cat with the same issues and he lived 10 years without another incident once he was on a low magnesium diet.

For more information on these wonderful cats, please contact me, or call Kitty Angels of Connecticut (located in Coventry).


Momma Cat

Momma and kittens found in shed.

Ok… I received from the shelter a mother cat and her three 10-day old kittens the other day. She was found in a shed. At first, the girl who took them grabbed only the kittens and not the mother. I heard that she had said the mother was “feral and out of milk.” I was asked to care for and bottle feed the babies. The next day I was called to pick up “the three kittens and the mother cat.”   I don’t know the whole story, just that the mother cat is NOT even close to feral and is a very good mother with plenty of milk!   In any event, I am so glad the mother was grabbed as well…finally. If people are going to take care to rescue small kittens, it’s vital to get the mother at the same time. From what I heard she was screaming and looking everywhere for her babies.

The mother cat (whom I have named Pricilla) was wearing a flea collar, which I removed as it was a tad tight and she no longer needs (and shouldn’t have with little ones on her). I assume someone owned this cat, unspayed and outside, and allowed to get pregnant, and when it was time to give birth she went off and found a safe locale. Fortunately, she was found and brought to the right people. She will get a full check up and shots and spaying after the kittens are weaned. And she will remain an indoor cat where she loves to get hugs and kisses from people. The kittens will never know the rigors and dangers she has seen.

Today, the three babies and momma cat are doing great. For now they live in my “spare” bedroom. All three kittens’ eyes are just opened, which means they are approximately 2 weeks old now. They are starting to crawl around and explore a bit. But momma keeps them in check. Last night a friend of mine had two of the babies in her lap when one cried. Pricilla jumped up on the bed, grabbed the kitten and brought he into the “nest” to nurse. My friend and I were laughing. It was just the cutest thing!