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Today's Vet-a-Thon

I'm trying to get ready to go on a trip out of town for a few weeks. A LONG overdue vacation—alone! Of course, the minute I declare I'm going away, everything starts to break, I catch a cold, now I have PMS and I had to run Bob to my Vet, then go pick up Rose at another Vet. Ugh.

Bob's been coughing. LOUD, BARKING COUGHS. He doesn't do it every day, but often enough so that I'm concerned about it. If he's working on hairballzilla, that's one thing, but from experience, that barking cough could be a sign of lung cancer or an infection. Since Bob is FIV+ I can't mess around. I've given Bob laxatone for the better part of three weeks. No hairball, more coughing. So, off he goes to visit my dear Dr. Larry.

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Happily, Bob's temp was normal and his weight we up a little bit. For an old sick cat, he's doing pretty well. They ran some x-rays and overall his lungs were OKAY, but not normal. So more waiting to see how things go. Dr. Larry told me to still go on my trip, but that whoever was looking after Bob should be careful to monitor how he's doing.

After dropping Bob off at home, I drove to Danbury to pick up Rose from another Vet. This is one of the Vets that our rescue group works with, even though I offered to take her to my Vet and pay for it and it would have been so much easier to do it that way, but no. No. I have to drive over and get her 20 miles from here.

Yeah, I have PMS, back off!

Anyway, aside from the overly chatty receptionist, I was able to pick Rose (e.g., Mama) without incident. She's supposed to have eye drops for the next week, but otherwise they thought she had a bad reaction to the Distemper vaccination she received.

Mama had a nice reunion with her babies, who seemed glad to see her again. In a few minutes, another potential adopter is coming to meet with Poppy and Daisy. They are open to adopting the kittens together. This is great. Now we need some for Mama! She is slated to be placed at the shelter in SIX MORE DAYS.

Anyone in CT, interested in adopting a really nice, young kitty???

More photos and stuff as soon as I'm not so pissy.

Gone, Baby, Gone

My foster cats survived their spay surgeries and they returned home yesterday morning. I was glad to have them back, but of course I realize that it's a temporary situation. Rose, the Mama, was slated to be moved over to a local animal shelter where she would be placed for adoption today. I'm not happy about it.

I'm so frustrated. Our group, like so many others, can't afford to open our own shelter. We home-foster and invite potential adopters to our home to see the cats they're interested in adopting. It stinks. We don't have a facility where someone can just stop by and see whatever cats and kittens we have all in one place. Until we can do that, we're forced to place adult cats into other shelters. They just don't show well in a home, where they're already safe and well-fed. They're more likely to be adopted if they're in a cage. It helps offset that they're no longer cute kittens, but adults who've hit a bad patch and need to be rescued.

Does it really feel like rescuing a cat from someone's home? Probably not.

It doesn't stop me from wanting to keep Rose here as long as needed. My very good boyfriend (errr...fiancè) supports this idea, too, and is willing to lend a hand to care for the cat when I GO ON MY SPANKIN' ROAD TRIP TO NEVADA in a few days (I hope I can leave, 'cause right now I have a f-ing cold).

Rose's fate is out of my hands, especially since she came home and was basically limp, after her surgery. She didn't eat much and what she did eat, she vomited. She also seems to have the runs, so it was back to the Vet for her. So far, her re-check went fine and no fever is present. Because our Co-Founder came to take her to the Vet, she may just pick Rose up tomorrow and take her straight to the Shelter. Am I paranoid? I don't think so. When I said; "I'll pick her up when they're done with her. Just let me know what time." was answered with; "We'll talk about it."

Poppy trying to comfort her Mama

Poppy comforts her Mama, Rose

Rose didn't get a chance to say goodbye to her babies. I didn't get a chance to say goodbye to Rose, either. Will any of us ever see her again? I dunno. She's gone, baby, gone.

Bartonella. Bitch!

The Bartonella saga continues. First, I discovered that Bob had Heamo-Bartonella. Not a big surprise since he lived most of his life outdoors. Once Bob's treatment was completed, I noticed a great improvement in his appearance and vigor. For a senior, he's doing very well.

Spencer, was diagnosed with Bartonella 6 months ago. Since he's only lived indoors while he's lived with me, it means he contracted it more than five years ago! Spencer had his 3-week course of antibiotics and I'm glad to say that his Bartonella Titer showed he has successfully kicked the infection. I'm also glad to add that his complete blood work was PERFECT, not a little off here or there, but PERFECT. This adds to my conviction, that removing grain from my cat's diet was the way to go.

Enter Gracie. Another cat who's lived with me for five years. Her health has been fine. She's never been sickly. As part of the process of testing ALL my cats for Bartonella, when Gracie was due for some pre-dental cleaning blood work, I asked my Vet to test her for Bartonella, as well. I was shocked to find out that Gracie was a plus 4 for Bartonella. This means she, too, will need to be on a 3-week course of meds.

Overall my cats don't fight. They certainly don't fight enough to draw blood. Their outdoor life is restricted to sitting on my deck, which is about twenty feet off the ground—and even with that, they only go out of doors once in awhile.

Gracie, most likely, had Bartonella when she came to my house. She didn't pass it to her offspring, because I have her five year old daughter, Petunia, here too.

The Girls
Gracie (front) with her daughter, Petunia (rear)

This is most curious to me. All my other cats are Bartonella negative. Considering the potential future effects of a long-term infection, such as Bartonella, I would strongly suggest ALL of you get out there are start testing your cats for Bartonella—especially if your cat is a bit on the fractious side.

Read my article HERE to see a complete list of health problems Bartonella can cause—and don't forget about "Cat Scratch Fever!" Humans can get Bartonella, too.

So get out there and protect your cats and your family!

The Meanest Person in the World

Being a foster mom has its' rewards, but there's also a price to pay. This is the time I hate. Time to pay up. The past eight weeks have been spent watching my two wards grow and thrive—the first purr, the first taste of (grain free!) cat food, the first time they climbed up on the bed, the first nap-collapsed in my lap, the first tiny cry.

Their success is my joy. Knowing they're safe from the cold, cruel world, lifts my heart. Seeing them bat their mom on the nose as they dance across the room after a small toy mouse gives me fits of giggles. It's precious—each and every moment.

But time nags at me. I know. I know! Here it is, time to move on. Time to pack up the kittens into a cat carrier. Time to convince "mama" it's time to go with them, in her own carrier. They're confused. They don't know why they can't be together or what is happening to them. They're placed face to face in the back seat of my car. I drape a blanket over the carriers both to keep them warm and knowing the dark will soothe them some.

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For the most part, there is silence during the 16 mile drive. Every so often I hear mama cry out softly. All she wants is to be free to care for her offspring and to comfort them as they huddle fearfully together. I always wish I could tell them what's going to happen, but with such bad news, would they really want to know?

Yes, my dears, I'm taking you to a Vet. He's going to stick a needle in your leg and make you go to sleep. When you wake up you'll feel cold, groggy and sore. Your belly will be shaved and will probably ache. You'll be alone and confused. You'll spend the night in a cage and alone in the darkness. The next day someone will come for you, yet another stranger. You'll be taken for a ride in the car, then you'll be given back to the lady who has been caring for you for two months. You'll get to see your sister and your Mother in your old room, but your joy will be short-lived.

Two days after you're reunited, you'll be separated. Not only will you never see your Mother again, but you'll never see your sister again or the nice lady who has been your friend for such a long time.

You'll be living in a new place that doesn't have other cats to make friends with or even a scary dog who'll chase you. Everything will seem overwhelming and terrifying to you. Eventually, you'll seek solace with the human who adopts you, all the while, wondering where your own family went. If you only had, at least, your sister with you, your world wouldn't feel like it came to an end.

If You Want to be a Model Arch Your Back Like This!

You'll resign yourself to this new life and find your happiness as you can. With any luck, you'll be treated with love and compassion for the rest of your life. If you misbehave or rip up the rug you may be hit or you may be banished to a single room. You may even be dumped outdoors, with no skills to survive. Maybe you'll be lucky enough to find someone to help you find a new home, a safe way station? Maybe you won't be so lucky. Maybe this is all for nothing—all this work and care, feeling like the meanest person in the world.

Why I Have a Back Ache

Queen Sized Bed, King Sized Cats

It doesn't matter that I have SEVEN cat beds in my bedroom. The cats want to sleep with ME ME ME. I am the cat bed!

Of course, I won't kick them off the bed, so I can get comfortable. No. I won't do that. My back aching every morning is my own fault.

Anyone else have this problem?



Our darling Spencer could not contain himself when I told him he was chosen to be one of the stars of the soon-to-be-available book: I Can Has Cheezburger!


His star power was so great, you'll find his photo on page 2! Talk about EXCITING! We're all a-tingle! Yay! Yay! Yay!

Thank you to Patrick, from Gotham Books, for including our boy in this adventure. Be sure to pick up your copy, available here, among other places, in early October.

Spencer's not sure he'll be available for autographs since he's busy napping right now.

Cute Break

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Daisy (left) and Poppy (right). Seven weeks old today!

The 2008 Cat Barf Blow-lympics

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Welcome fellow sports enthusiasts and cat lovers (not LOVERS) to the 2008 Cat Barf Blow-lympics! This year, the Blow-lympics (e.g. BL) is being hosted by none other than, our own Covered in Cat Hair, Queen of Black Stretchy Pants! After years of competing against those wily ferals in New York City, the contest has relocated (err...been moved under duress) to the woods of Connecticut and our modest Queen's modest home.

And of course, this year the coveted locale provides awesome sponsorship opportunities in a wide range of horizontal surfaces…dull hard wood floors, precious family heirloom rugs and yet we forget, the expansive, dirty and somewhat fractured white tile flooring! Imagine "Your Name Here" with placement within viewing range of the latest cat created spew. Not only that, but there will be hundreds of Press from around the globe, ready to capture the big moment, all while YOUR Brand is being featured prominently!

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We expectorate this year to have an even bigger audience than ever before—predicted to reach at least 15 to 20 people, some of whom will actually watch and/or clean up and/or have a sympathy wretch after each event.

Act NOW so you won't miss out on any of the events! Imagine the spectacle of seeing:

— Name that post-spewed object. Ew. Is it...oh's not!!!

— Beat the World Record: Re-eating Dry Food Barfs in under10 seconds

— Longest hairball

— Heaviest hairball

— The sublime elegance of freestyle barfing

— Hairball Luge

— Co-ed Team barfing

— The barfcathalon. The non-stop barf-fest. Who will survive? Who will get dehydrated and need IV fluids? Who will CLEAN THIS MESS UP?

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Of course, it wouldn't be a Blow-lympics without a mascot, so this year, our mascot, named by day care children in South Platte, North Dakota, is called: Hugh (pronounced: huuuuuuuuuuuuueeeeew!!!!). To order, your very own Hugh doll, mug, hat, t-shirt, rain gear, thermal mug, sticker, barfy wipes, or barf bag, just send us a roll of paper towels and some bleach wipes and we'll trade you. Kids just LOVE Hugh!

It wouldn't BE a Blow-lympics without the talented and selfless athletes who've spent years carelessly blowing chunks wherever they see fit, regardless of the time of day, and certainly without any regard to who might accidentally step in it barefoot this morning just after they woke up.

These sleek felines train by eating any plant with some sort of frond, any bug, gnat, moth, mouse, flying squirrel, snake, bird or electrical cord, then blowing it back out as soon as possible, and hopefully with some decorative semi-digested food bits in it just to add some sparkle! They also practice speed-gulping dry food, to give them a powerful, rejective purge from their shocked and super-sated system. Their motto: "It should look as good going in as it does coming out"

So act now! Buy your tickets today and you'll have a front row seat to witness the rapture of each rupture, smell the aroma of freshly "minted" mounds, play leap-barf as you try to outstep your opponent and not get a shoe-full of cack! Great for the whole family!

Note: The 2008 Cat Barf Blow-lympics is not responsible for lost or ruined articles or anything else, for that matter.

109 Pounds of Cat Food in the Hall

I'm glad I can't do math because I would run screaming in circles, pull out my long, luxurious locks, add callouses to my calloused feet; if I knew how much money I spend on cat food each month.

I know that for $268.00 (which included shipping and some discounts), I now have enough cat food to feed the little blankety-blanks for about two days. Okay, maybe three days. Okay, I'm exaggerating.

A little.

109 Pounds of Cat Food

That's $2.46 a pound. What else could I get for $2.46/lb? Not shoes, that's for sure. How about steak? No. That's about $12/lb. Hmmm...

I just Googled $2.46/lb and I see I could have bought scrap ammunition brass, 4 cartons of USS flat washers, organic garbanzo beans or 6 1/2 pounds of Kosher Peanut Butter Chips for the same per pound price. Now I feel cheated. I like peanut butter chips as much as the next person, but although garbanzo beans is fun to say, they're not so much fun to eat.

Not sure what I'd do with scrap ammunition brass, but it sounds exotic. Maybe I should just order some to see what it's like? Is it scrap ammunition brass from BEFORE or AFTER the ammunition is fired? That could be even MORE exciting! What if there's someone that goes around crime scenes and picks up the bits of leftover brass for recycling? Now that's a job I'd apply for right away!

So I'm broke. So what? I'm always broke. My only remaining hope is that one day I'll have enough empty cardboard cat food boxes to build myself a lovely home...because I certainly won't be able to pay my mortgage much longer at $2.46/lb for friggen cat food!


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