Cat News, Read All About It!

State of Emergency: The Mail is Here!!! Check it Quick!
Humans, you should let us kitties check the mail more often. This is truly how it’s done!

 

Top Story in The News: Boxes
We were planning on reporting on Colonel Meow’s adept reporting on boxes before we learned of his untimely departure from our world. We are keeping this piece in our news feed in honor of him.

Boxes, boxes, boxes. How does one deal with the enticement of a box (whether empty or not, but preferably empty or full of packing material or warm laundry)? Colonel Meow will help you decide how deal with those boxes.

 

Top Story in Home Decor: Birds
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Let’s face it: I’m a cat and I like birds (and lizards and crickets and bugs … and I keep telling my human that I really do actually want to meet that raccoon that comes through our yard every night!). So guess what?! I found a great website that tells you all about birds. And there’s pictures of birds. And its education about birds. So now when I finally catch one of those silly little birds in the bushes outside the front door, I can bring it back inside and tell my human exactly what kind of bird it is and how to take a fabulous picture of it to decorate our walls with right before I let it go so I can laugh at my humans bad hunting skills. Somehow, whenever I let her do some hunting, the lizard or bug (no birds yet, but that’ll happen, I promise!) inevitably gets back outside again. Man is my human a bad hunter! So where do you find this great website? Here at http://www.facebook.com/becausebirds or at http://becausebirds.com/

 

Top Story in Health: The Death of an Internet Master-Cat
It is with a heavy heart that we must report the passing of Colonel Meow. We are very saddened by this news. Our thoughts are with his humans.

 

Now for your commercial break

 

Top Story in Community: Project Bay Cat
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Project Bay Cat is a San Francisco based feral cat organization helping to spay and neuter feral cats in the area (their facebook page is here and their website is here). They’ve reduced the feral cat population by 59% simply through spay/neuter of the cats there. Research has shown that removing feral cats from an area does not eliminate feral cat populations. Rather, it creates a vacuum for new feral cats to come in and take over the consumption of whatever food source drew the cats to the area in the first place. Food sources can be human created or nature created food sources. If you see feral cats in your neighborhood, please contact a local feral cat organization. The feral cats you see may be part of a managed colony of feral cats, which means they are being cared for by volunteers and depend on generous donations from the community to continue feeding and medically caring for the cats. If the feral cats you see are not part of a managed colony, the local feral cat organization can now do what they can to spay/neuter these new cats and to try to care for them, as well. Please consider volunteering for a local feral cat organization. It’s easy to do. Simple feeding doesn’t take a lot of time for those busy folks. Being a driver to get trapped feral cats to and from veterinary appointments is another great way to volunteer for those who work odd hours and are available during the morning and evening hours (for pick-up and drop-off times). Trapping cats for veterinary appointments (usually for spay/neuter appointments) is another great way to help out. This is usually done at night with the trapper maintaining a safe distance from the trap while keeping an eye on it to make sure you can get the trapped cat to a safe location before predators can harm the cat. Also offering space in your home, if you have it, for cats to recoup from surgery or while waiting for surgery is another great option. However, your space needs to be entirely enclosed with no holes or escape routes for the cat (feral cats are super smart and sneaky when it comes to escaping and hiding). Asking the feral cat organization how to keep feral cats safe while recuperating is a great idea. Also, when

Project Bay Cat's very own Grumpy Cat

Project Bay Cat’s very own Grumpy Cat

contacting a feral cat organization, please keep in mind that most of these are all volunteer organization; therefore, it can take them a few days to get back to you. And lastly, if you’re unable to volunteer, please consider donating to a feral cat colony in your area. Check their websites to see if they have a donation wishlist of items they may need. The green stuff (and I don’t mean catnip) is also a big help and can keep the kitties in food. Also, see if you can sponsor a feral kitty. Be willing to offer the financial needs of that kitty throughout its life (which includes food, veterinary care, and shelter, even if that shelter isn’t an actual home). This can be a great way to care for a kitty if you’re unable to have one of your own (or if you want more than you have but can’t have more than you have – pesky rental pet policies). Do keep in mind that in a feral colony, the caretakes can, in no way, guarantee that the food given by that cat or the shelter provided for that cat will be eaten or used solely by that cat. We’re cats, after all. You know us when it comes to pet beds. You buy the coziest, comfiest pet bed and we still sleep on your pillow or in your laundry basket. And I have been known to share my crunchies and yet steal canned food from other cats.

Keep in mind that the kitties in the video below are Project Bay Cat feral kitties living together in a colony. Watch the love! 

 

Top Story in Opinion: I Read This Story Today
So beautiful. Too beautiful not to share. Please adopt your next best friend!!!

391734_508717015813423_1268174166_n“I RESCUED A HUMAN TODAY Her eyes met mine as she walked down the corridor peering apprehensively into the kennels. I felt her need instantly and knew I had to help her. I wagged my tail, not too exuberantly, so she wouldn’t be afraid. As she stopped at my kennel I blocked her view from a little accident I had in the back of my cage. I didn’t want her to know that I hadn’t been walked today. Sometimes the overworked shelter keepers get too busy and I didn’t want her to think poorly of them. As she read my kennel card I hoped that she wouldn’t feel sad about my past. I only have the future to look forward to and want to make a difference in someone’s life. She got down on her knees and made little kissy sounds at me. I shoved my shoulder and side of my head up against the bars to comfort her. Gentle fingertips caressed my neck; she was desperate for companionship. A tear fell down her cheek and I raised my paw to assure her that all would be well. Soon my kennel door opened and her smile was so bright that I instantly jumped into her arms. I would promise to keep her safe. I would promise to always be by her side. I would promise to do everything I could to see that radiant smile and sparkle in her eyes. I was so fortunate that she came down my corridor. So many more are out there who haven’t walked the corridors. So many more to be saved. At least I could save one. I rescued a human today. Janine Allen”

Good night and Feed Me Canned Food!

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I Like Plastic

I love to eat plastic. Mom always worries about me choking on it, so she’s quick to throw it away in a covered trash can. But sometimes I find it before she can throw it away and I’ll start munching away. It’s not very nice when she tears it out of my mouth, but she does worry. She thinks I’ll choke on it. Well, low and behold, I started choking on dry cat food today. I was so scared, I started purring (for you humans, the purr is associated with any strong emotion, not just happiness).

aidMom learned a big lesson today. She had taken a pet first aid class taught by someone with the Red Cross, when she worked at an animal shelter. That was close to 10 years ago, and when she heard from my other ma that I was choking (mom was at school when I was choking), she wished she had kept up her certification in that. She realized just how important that class was and how important it is to know what to do for your kitties when they need your help. So, if you’ve never considered becoming certified in pet first aid, you should consider it now. You never know exactly when you might save the life of someone’s pet, whether it’s your own or someone else’s.

You can sign up for classes by visiting the Red Cross website. Do a search for pet first aid classes and register for one. I think it’s such a good idea, I’m purring about it. Because cpr cat isn’t always around to jump into action.

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Senior Maude

cattownMy mom loves senior kitties. A friend shared this photo of a 16 year old senior kitty named Maude (isn’t she adorable?!?!?). Maude is in need of a foster home, or, better yet, someone to adopt her. My mom would take her in a flash, but I reminded her that if she adopted every kitty she wanted, she’d never have time for me and my sister (plus, people might call her a cat hoarder if she actually did adopt all the kitties she wanted to). If you’re interested in fostering or adopting Maude, please contact Cat Town. You can find their website here and you can find them on facebook here. My mom and I looked for a phone number and couldn’t find one, but you can also email them about Maude at info@cattownoakland.org. Can you help give this sweetheart a warm, loving home for the last years of her life? The poor thing was found on the streets before being taken to the Oakland City Animal Shelter and then rescued by Cat Town. Even though I love to go outside, I’m always happy to come back inside with my people who love me. I think every cat deserves that!

If you can’t adopt Maude, would you mind terribly if I asked you to post about Maude? You can do that through twitter or facebook or on pintrest or anywhere you want to. Help me get the word out that Maude needs a home. You can link directly to the Cat Town post about Maude on facebook here or you can retweet or share my post, too!

Emergency Services

cat freaking outHave you ever thought about what you’d do if there were a disaster in your area? Say a tornado, fire, earthquake or tsunami? I live in California near the coast, so we often worry about earthquakes and possible tsunamis from those earthquakes. We also have fires in California and sometimes those get closer to home than my mom would like (her lungs have been irritated by 2 fires here in Southern California since we moved her almost 2 years ago), so we worry about those, also. And have you ever wondered what kind of emergency kit you should have for your cat? Well, I have some suggestions for you! There are some important things you will need to have on hand, some of which can probably be kept in the trunk of your car (like a bag of cat litter … I hear that’s even useful in winter time if your stroller – er, I mean car – gets stuck in the snow). Other things you’ll want to keep inside in one easily accessible spot (like maybe inside, on top of, or next to the cat carrier). My stroller has a trunk underneath it, and mom’s thinking that’s a good spot to keep my supplies in. I tell her it’ll make my gas mileage go down, but she doesn’t pay attention.

skAnyway, the basic things you definitely need to have in your cat emergency kit are (p.s. if you’re a dog owner, you can find a dog emergency kit checklist here: http://www.redrover.org/disaster-supplies-dogs):

  • sleepypod-outsidersYour cat’s carrier, of course. Have a few pillow cases inside, as well. Pillow cases can be useful for carrying your cat around in if your kitty’s having a hard time. Sometimes, in emergencies, we kind of freak out, and pillow cases may be the best way to get us from a home to a car or some other safe location (because we might freak out even more if we see that carrier come out).
  • Litter box and litter or puppy pee pads (puppy pee pads are less messy than litter, but it might be worth your time to test one out in your cat’s litter box to make sure s/he will actually use it before you rely solely on those in an emergency situation – they’re definitely lighter and easier to store than litter). Also, there are a number of different types of things you can use for litter boxes. There are cheap temporary litter boxes that you can buy that come pre-filled with litter, but you’ll still want to have extra litter or puppy pee pads. There are also foldable litter boxes that are easily stored. You can also use aluminum roasting pans as litter boxes (they’re light-weight and easy to store, as well).

    foldable litterbox

    Foldable litter box

  • Waste bags, like dog waste bags, for used litter.
  • Enough dry cat food for one week. Check with your local emergency kit store such as a surplus store; some of them will vacuum pack the food your cat’s used to eating for a small fee. Keeping things as similar as possible during an emergency makes a big difference, so ensuring your kitty can eat the food s/he’s used to can make a big difference …. especially if your kitty is on a special diet. But make sure you rotate the food, so that you don’t find yourself in an emergency situation with overly expired kitty food your cat won’t and/or shouldn’t eat.
  • Enough canned food for one week. Make sure to also bring along a can opener. Sometimes those pop-top cans break and you won’t be able to get them open without a can opener. Also, some cats are fed just canned food, so for those kitties, you can skip the dry food supply, but I would recommend adding a few extra cans of cat food just for safety’s sake.
  • 1280px-Anheuser-Busch_canned_drinking_waterEnough water for one week. There are a bunch of options for water. You can buy bottled water and rotate them out to ensure they don’t expire. There are also water pouches you can buy at emergency stores (REI comes to mind for these types of water pouches, but you can find them online, too). There are also cans of water, like soda cans only with water that are supposed to have a 50 year shelf life. I know some people worry about the plastic water container thing, so these might be a good option.
  • Towels and/or some other form of bedding. Make sure the bedding isn’t too big or cumbersome, though. Remember, you want all of your supplies to fit in one storage bin or cat carrier. If you have more than that, you’re taking too much.
  • Any medications your cat may be taking along with labeled bottles and dosage information printed on the label.
  • Current copies of veterinary records along with vaccine information in a waterproof container like a Ziploc bag.
  • Phone numbers of your veterinarian, relatives and friends (I know you have those in your cell phone, but you should write them down on paper in case something happens to your cell phone). An additional phone number for you to write down is for the Animal Poison Control Center (they may charge money for the phone call, though): 888-426-4465.
  • cathotelA list of pet friendly hotels not only in your area but also outside of your area. Red Cross Emergency centers often can’t allow pets, so having a backup list of other places to go (like hotels, friends or relatives) can help you keep your kitties with you.
  • Have a flashlight with extra batteries and/or emergency glow sticks.
  • Instructions for the care of your cat in case you have to leave us with someone else in a pinch.

 

Some optional items might include:

  • cfaPet first aid book
  • Pet first aid kit (you can find these on the internet)
  • Toys. If you don’t have room for toys, you know us cats: an empty box, wadded up paper or an empty toilet paper roll work just fine, too. And you can usually find paper and/or empty toilet paper rolls anywhere (in terms of toilet paper rolls, you should have a roll of toilet paper in your own emergency kit, so you can even wad up a bit of toilet paper for us to play with).
  • Temporary ID tags in case our original one falls off
  • Additional ID tags with additional contact information in case something happens to your cell phone. You can use the phone number of a relative or friend, but be sure to check with them first to make sure they’re ok with being a backup contact person in case of emergency.

Lovely End to a Lovely Day

Just in case you haven’t had enough heart-warming today, here is a fabulous video about people saving all different sorts of animals. Love makes the world go round.

New Years Eve

CatI know it’s not Christmas quite yet, but since New Year’s Eve isn’t far behind, I thought now might be the time to talk. I myself am a bit of a party cat and would love to entertain at a wondrous New Year’s Eve Party. But let’s face it, even a party cat like me can get overwhelmed with all that champagne and want to just hide away somewhere. Or, better yet, sneak out the front door and take a ride home with someone else for the night. And I’m a bit of an outgoing kind of guy. Just think of all those little kitties who are shy, skittish, and unsure of strangers. Take my little sister, Penny, for example. The most a “stranger” has gotten in is a 15 second pat on her rump as she’s running away … and to her, a stranger is anyone other than me and my mom. I know she’s not the only kitty out there like this. So here are some tips for keeping us kitties safe and happy for New Years.

  • Remember that it’s much easier for us to escape when doors are opening and closing a lot, especially if alcohol is involved in your evening’s celebrations.
  • If you have a room that your kitties enjoy hanging out in, other than the main entertaining area of your home, keeping kitties in that room with a litter box, food and water (please don’t put our food and water near our litter box) can be a great way of keeping us safe, cozy and comfy.
  • Remember that kazoos, champagne corks exploding out of bottles, party poppers, balloons, streamers, fireworks, and any other strange and loud noises can easily frighten us; we don’t really understand what all that stuff is for and it can be really scary.
  • Please don’t feed us party food or alcohol – some of it can be toxic and dangerous to us.
  • Make sure we’re wearing a collar with your contact information just in case we should somehow slip out and get really scared. And if your kitties aren’t microchipped, consider getting it done, because it can be a great way to reconnect you to your kitty should your kitty end up at a veterinarian’s office or shelter.
  • Please have a good time; all I ask is that you keep your pets safe and stay safe yourself!

 

Doggies and Kitties, Oh My

bhs

Berkeley Humane Society needs your help

Hey everyone. If you live in the San Francisco, Berkeley, Oakland, East Bay area and have some extra unused blankets or dog beds laying around, the Berkeley Humane Society on Ninth and Carleton could use them. Donations are tax deductable, too, so making end of the year donations can help not just homeless dogs and cats, but you, too!

Also, there’s a dog rescue in L.A. that’s an all volunteer animal charity serving underserved communities like South East Los Angeles, Watts and Compton.  They say, “We offer free services such as spay/neuter, vaccines and basic medical care for dog owners who want to keep their dogs out of a shelter.” Their name is Downtown Dog Rescue and they seem like they do some really good work. I’m not so big on the puppies, but they deserve homes, too, even if I don’t want one.

Poopy Cat Dolls

There’s a new type of litter box out there. Sadly, it’s not coming to the United States. It’s currently only sold in the Netherlands. But they’re trying to expand their market, so keep an eye out for the Poopy Cat disposable litter box. In the meantime, watch the cute ad for it!

All Black Cat Cafe

Japan is known for it’s cat cafes. It’s hard to have a kitty in an apartment in Japan (they often have strict policies or no-pet policies), so cat cafe’s have been a big thing there. Recently, they opened a new cafe that has all black cats. And black cats in Japan are good luck kitties rather than bad omens. I think I like Japan!