Nofur, The Naked Cat, is Sad

If you look at the sidebar, you’ll see that we have a link to Adventures of A Naked Cat. We have been following Nofuratu’s adventures for a while now. He is an activist and marches in the Pride Parade in his hometown in Canada. He refuses to bend to gender stereotypes and because of that, he looks just as wonderful in a tux as he does in a dress. One of the most fashionable kitties out there, Nofur is also a certified therapy pet who does charity work. In his blog, Nofur writes about the places he visits to and provides wonderful reviews.

Nofur is very sad today because his brother Vlad had to have half his tail amputated after a nasty incident with a door. It comes at a difficult time financially, so if any of you want to chip in a little bit, they have Paypal account: it’s sinful_scarlet@yahoo.com

You can follow the news about Vlad at the their Facebook page.

Vlad update: He’s on his way home from the hospital.  Hooray!

Vlad
This is Vlad in his Halloween spider costume.
Norfuatu
Nofuratu in his tuxedo. What a handsome kitty he is!
Nofuratu
Here's Nofur looking drop dead gorgeous in a dress. That was on his trip to New Orleans.

A note about the above photos. The copyright is held by Nofur and his family. His mom gave me permission to use them. His blog has a lot more pictures and commentary and we heartily suggest you go see them.

Here are some flowers for Vlad and his family. Get well soon!

Bernal Heights
California poppies growing on a hill in San Francisco


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Musical Sunday

The other day, I made a post about musical blinds. Tito is strumming as I type. However, first thing in the morning, Tito and Jenny go into berserker mode and careen around the apartment at full speed. Of course, going at full speed means drifting around the corners and leaping over and on the furniture.

Don't let that placid look fool you. Tito and Jenny are monsters in the morning.
Don’t let that placid look fool you. Tito and Jenny are monsters in the morning.

Action as exciting as theirs deserves some good theme music and here it is. It’s called Devil’s Galop, by Charles Williams. Please forgive the typo on the YouTube video. It is named after the galop, a French dance.

And now onward to the cute stuff. We came across some geese and goslings when we went to Stow Lake in Golden Gate Park. It was the day we saw the nesting herons.

Watchful parents
Watchful parents
Crossing guard
Crossing guard
Hurry up children!
Hurry up children!

Have a happy Sunday everybody


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The Great Blue Herons of San Francisco

The Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) is one of the most elegant and beautiful birds to grace our wetlands. The largest of the herons, they stand around 4 ft (122 cm). tall with a wing span of around 6ft (183 cm). They range from Mexico and the United States up through the West Coast of Canada into Alaska. These amazing birds have been living and nesting in San Francisco since 1993.

Heron hunting fish in Mallard Lake in Golden Gate Park
Heron hunting fish in Mallard Lake in Golden Gate Park

San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park is home to more than just bison, raccoons, and coyotes. It’s home to at least one nesting pair of Great Blue Herons. They live here year round have a nest high in the top of a Monterrey Cypress. They hunt fish in the ponds and lakes in the park. I once saw a heron next to an intersection with a large gopher in its mouth. I couldn’t get a photo, darn it.

The nest is the clump of sticks under the heron chicks in the center
The nest is the clump of sticks under the heron chicks in the center
Closeup of mom and dad
Closeup of mom and dad

I looked them up on the intertubes and discovered that San Francisco Nature Education has a heron watch every year. The herons lay their eggs between January and March and the chicks hatch in April. Volunteers meet at Stow Lake with spotting scopes and spend time educating the public about these beautiful birds. This year, the last one is May 19th. I didn’t find out about it soon enough to go this year. Nest year I’ll try to go.

Here is a great video by the California Academy of Sciences, which is located in Golden Gate Park.

Please forgive the abominable purple fringe in the photos. I adore my San Francisco fog, but it does make some photos difficult with a point and shoot. I’ll have a good DSLR eventually.


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Clouds, Doggy Exercise, and Reptile Romance

The rains are almost done for the season and the clouds will make way for the summer fog, but it has been glorious. When the clouds are that great, it means a trip to Sierra Point with the camera.

Sierra Point
Looking to the East toward San Lorenzo and the Oakland airport
Sierra Point
Looking to the North East toward Oakland and Berkeley
Sierra Point
Clouds and sun

After that, we went to McLaren Park to take a walk around the reservoir and watch the dogs play in the water.

McLaren Park
The reservoir appeared calm at first glance
McLaren Park
As we watched, we saw a duck. Not far behind was the dog
McLaren Park
The duck was taking the dog for a swim

The dog never did catch up with the duck. When the dog got too close, the duck would flap partway across the pond to lengthen the lead. Then the dog would chase the duck until it got too close and then it would start all over again. Twenty minutes later, the duck was still leading the dog around the reservoir. The dog got his/her exercise for the day.

After the entertainment provided by the dog and the duck, we headed back to the car. On the way, we found a pair of lizards enjoying the sunshine. The male lizard was doing a little romantic dance for his lady lizard that alternated between head bobbing and push ups. He was quite enthusiastic. We moved past quietly so as to avoid disturbing their budding romance.

McLaren Park
Romance in the sun. The male (right) was courting his lady


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It’s Monday and No Longer Raining Cats and Dogs

We had a few good storms and it rained cats and dogs. I think it rained a guinea pig or two as well. Monday is here and it’s the day before taxes are due. Yeah, sorry for the reminder. This Monday is a good example of the need to escape. I decided to help you escape with cats, dogs, and some good music.

Many of you will remember the Ultimate Dog Tease video by klaatu42 at YouTube. Well, here is the Ultimate Cat Tease by the same. If the screen goes wonky and sputters, it’s deliberate. Just wait. It’s worth it.

It’s time for the dogs. Here is OK Go with a wonderful song and video starring dogs and OK Go, of course.

Here is a LOL from Cheezburger cute enough to make your head ‘splode.

dogs and cats


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Sunday mayhem at o-dark hundred hours…

It’s 3:40 a.m. and I’m trying to work up a movie review. The boys are pooped and crashed in their spots on the computer desk: Tito in the basket above and Maz in the doggie bed to the side.

I want to play. Play with me.
I want to play. Play with me.

Miss Jenny still wants to play and is getting bratty about it. She’s carrying this balled up piece of paper, dropping it in Maz’ bed and steps on him to get a reaction. No dice.

She jumps up to Tito’s lair, almost knocking the desk lamp clipped to the side. I can hear Tito sigh, but he doesn’t budge. Down she comes again, picking up her toy once more.

I keeled it.
I keeled it.

She bats it into the space between the TV table and the wall and lunges after it, wedging her front end down there while back-pedaling with her rear.

She farts. Oh God she farted.

She comes up victorious with paper in mouth, I guess. I can’t really tell, my eyes watering and the fumes affecting my inner ear: the image and sound on the TV seem out of sync, because sound travels at a different speed after she ‘alters’ the atmosphere. I put my hands down on the desk to steady myself, Jeez… We need to change her diet progressively, but soon. Much depends on this.

Like, the future…

Ceiling Cat told me to.
Ceiling Cat told me to.


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Cows: They haz a happy

Here are some happy cows for you to enjoy. This video was shot by Compassion in World Farming. I’m not a vegetarian (almost, but not quite), but I feel that all livestock should be raised in this manner, rather than in factory farms.

In addition to happy cows, we have some happy cats wearing hats. They belong to YouTube user Shironekoshiro.

A happy post just wouldn’t be the same without a Maru LOL picture.
Maru and cow


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Caturday: a tale of two kittehs. Or three.

All four of our kittoons here have needed a bit of socializing right from the start. It might seem that Maz Whang didn’t, but his universe was turned upside down when we adopted him, as he’d grown up a full year with Sphynx siblings, and a couple other cats and dog.

To be wrenched from his home was traumatic, and the poor beastie gacked and crapped all over himself in the cat carrier on the way to his new digs.

No camera! No camera!
No camera! No camera!

We had to stop, clean him up and comfort him as best we could before driving on.

Sphynxes are social, but on their own terms, which aren’t always easy to decipher. They really are driven by the two related needs of warmth and sustenance, with much playtime in between.

Just like you test the warmth of a baby bottle prior to feeding, you have to ensure your hands are warm enough before petting Maz or he’ll recoil and dart away in shock and horror. I call this “ghosting” because that’s what his reaction makes me think of. We’ve said he’s been very good for Tito (and vice versa), drawing Tito out of his ‘goth’ period following Boober’s passing.

Strangers at first
Strangers at first

Finally, Tito was able to chase and play to his heart’s content with the streaker, losing excess weight in the process, and bonding with, well, an alien. Even Miss Jenny finds Mazuzu irresistible: both want to nom on Maz, who’ll leap straight up a couple feet in the air and maybe growl if a tooth racks his spine. Mmmmh. Baby back ribs…

Love happens
Love happens

Given Tito and Jenny’s “affection” for shoes, I suspect they enjoy Maz’ gym locker smell when it’s time to give him a bath. That’s usually a signal for us to drag him into the tub, but then they love the new cat smell just as much and are all over him again.

Affection? They have it. Tito tricks us into feeding him and leaves the food for Maz, knowing the alien always needs more. Smart Tito…

Maz grooms both Tito and Jenny when he beds down with either in the basket atop the computer desk, later gacking hairballs and meowing his discontent, but what can you do..? Jenny also grooms both, focusing on Maz’ ears in particular, an unexpected boon for us since Maz and Q-tips don’t mix well.

The mutual grooming society in action
The mutual grooming society in action

One of the biggest changes is something Maz started and Jenny continues: helping Tito find his voice. Because he never was very vocal at all, this watchful little thing which grew into a big cat. He now trills and coos and meows, although always in the higher pitch of a kitten. And it may be early yet to tell, but I think Jenny’s going to be the same. They both will always sound like kittens.

Tito and Jenny
Tito and Jenny

This may sound like a sign of arrested development but I prefer to think of it as a display of happiness, along with Tito’s joy at being picked up and carried from room to room for a few minutes, purring and discovering a new perspective on his world with wide eyes, rubbing his chin on our cheek as we do so. And Jenny’s happiness at going to sleep hugging my hand to her head, like a pillow.

Our two little feral rescues no longer have to survive on mean streets, they only have to romp and warm each other and their “cousin” from outer space.

It's love
It’s love

Love is in the air and scarcely displaced by Maz and Jenny’s farts. It’s all good.


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