Tito and the art of the Dead Bug

Tito and Jenny are both nervous wreck kitties. In Tito’s case, it has taken him 4 years to learn to relax…mostly. He’s still terrified of shoes and he smacks the crap out of anything that doesn’t look right to him. Aside from smacking inanimate objects that make him nervous, he doesn’t have a mean bone in his body. He’s a gentle soul and he adores Miss Jenny.

I managed to get some photos of him practicing the dead bug. He’s getting quite good at holding the position for a long time. Miss Jenny is still too nervous to attempt this position.

Tito dead bug
Lazy semi-dead bug
Tito dead bug
Happy dead bug
Tito dead bug
Dead bug with a bit of a twist

Speaking of dead bugs….


YouTube video by Carmichaellynch


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Caturday: Basket Case

The furkids love the basket. I put a small basket on the shelf above the computer. It was a refuge for The Boober when Tito was a kitten. Tito was unrelenting about playing and The Boober was fighting cancer. By the time Tito got big enough to get to the basket, he was calm and content with merely snuggling. Now Tito and Miss Jenny use the snuggle box.

Happy kitties sharing the snuggle box

I don’t have a much as a bonus pic. However, yesterday we went out to the Conservatory of Flowers.

Conservatory of Flowers
If you wonder where this is, just look at the message that begins to the left of the stairs and ends on the right.


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Caturday: Kittehs and Disaster Preparedness

Yes, it’s Caturday and I even have some pics today. The last week or two has been a bit chaotic. Lastech is starting a new job next week. He no longer has a long commute to work. Yipee! Now back to the important stuff.

I left this too late. However, here in light of that monster of all storms bearing down on the East Coast, here is a disaster plan for pets and their humans. I truly hope this list won’t be needed by anyone, but just in case… This disaster plan can be found listed under the blog header.

The fur babies can be found below the disaster plan.

Before Disaster Strikes: Identify Your Pet

  • Keep your pet’s license current.
  • Make sure that collar and identification tags are worn at all times.
  • Consider having a safe, permanent microchip implanted in your pet. This type of ID cannot fall off or be removed. Most veterinarians offer microchipping services to their customers.
  • If your pet is already microchipped, make sure that you register with the manufacture’s database, and remember to notify the company if you move or change phone numbers.

Crate Train Your Pet

  • Train your pet to enter his/her carrier or crate at your command. Try putting your pet’s favorite treat in his/her carrier and sounding a bell at the same time. Repeat this process every day, until your pet comes running at the sound of the bell. Continue this routine often enough to keep it fresh in your pet’s mind. This training will be extremely helpful when locating a frightened animal.
  • Also important — make sure your pet is comfortable being handled.

Prepare a First Aid Kit — Include:

  • large and small bandages
  • scissors
  • tweezers
  • cotton swabs
  • antibiotic ointment
  • hydrogen peroxide (to induce vomiting or clean deep wounds
  • elastic tape
  • eye wash (saline)
  • ear-cleaning solutions
  • K-Y Jelly (water soluble)
  • any special medications prescribed by your veterinarian

Secure Bird Cages and Aquariums

  • Because these items may move and/or break during a disaster; securing them on low stands or tables is advisable. 
  • Tighten the latch on your birdcage so that the door cannot be shaken open easily.

Develop a Neighborhood Plan

  • Get to know your neighbors and their pets.
  • Keep an updated list of their home and work phone numbers (remember to update these frequently).
  • Select a neighborhood coordinator who will be ready to assist should a disaster occur when you are not at home. Make sure this person spends much of their time at home, or that they work within walking distance of your neighborhood.
  • Select one or two backup coordinators in case the primary person is not available.

If Your Pet Is Lost

  • Immediately call or visit the nearest animal shelter to report your missing pet.
  • When it is safe, return to your neighborhood to post or distribute  Lost Pet posters. Be sure to include your name, home address and home and work phone numbers. It’s always helpful to include a current photograph of your pet.
  • Continue to search the area for your missing pet. A frightened animal can stay hidden for days.
  • Call neighbors and service workers, such as mail carriers, police, firefighters and PG&E workers for leads.

If You Find a Lost Pet

  • Notify your local animal shelter as soon as possible. Be prepared to give a full description of the animal. Include breed, color, and sex and the location where the animal was found. 
  • Remember that sick and/or injured animals can become unpredictable from fear and pain, and should be handled only by professionals with proper equipment.

In Case of Evacuation

Red Cross shelters do not accept pets. Prepare a list of back up arrangements, such as homes of friends and family, hotels that allow pets, boarding facilities, veterinarians and/or shelters.

It is generally not recommended that you leave your pet behind during an evacuation. If you must, follow these guidelines to help ensure your pet’s safety.

  • Post a highly visible sign in a window to let rescue workers know how many pets were left behind.
  • The date you left on front door with chalk, paint or marker.
  • Leave plenty of water in a large, open container that cannot be tipped over.
  • Leave plenty of food in timed feeders (check local pet supply stores). These will prevent your pet from overeating.
  • Do not tie or cage your pet! The chances for survival are greater if he/she can escape easily.

Pet Disaster Kit

A prepared disaster kit, kept in a safe and easily accessible place, will enable you to provide immediate care to your pet in an emergency. A calm, well-trained pet, who is either on leash, or in a carrier, will be more welcome wherever you go.

Items to Include:

  • Sturdy crate and/or pet carrier;
  • Identification tags and collars;
  • Leashes;
  • Food and water (a 7-day supply for each pet);
  • Non-spill bowls;
  • Litter box and litter;
  • Any special medications;
  • Manual can opener and plastic lid;
  • Copy of your pet’s vaccination history;
  • Recent photos of each pet;
  • Pet First-Aid book;
  • Pet First-Aid kit;
  • Phone number of a local emergency veterinary hospital;
  • Phone number of your local animal shelter (Animal Care and Control (415) 554-6364 for emergency services 24 hours a day, seven days a week);
  • Long-term confinement equipment: chains, cable-runs, tie out stakes, portable caging
  • Large plastic bags for pet cleanup; and
  • Emergency phone numbers: ( ) _____________________ and ( ) _____________________.
Tito as art
Tito with curly doodads
Jenny as abstract
Miss Nightshade Jenny with color


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Caturday in the land of… OMG, where is the fog?

Hi folks. Actually the fog has returned, but it was an ugly and hot couple of days. This is normal at this time of year as we begin the change from the summer fog to the winter rain. While it was fine outside, it was a wee bit warm in the apartment for the furry ones. Still, we managed to get a pic or two.

Miss Jenny managed to find a cool spot to hide in. She only emerged in the evenings.

Miss Nightshade Jenny
Miss Jenny resting on her little crocheted blankets. She very carefully paws them into the position she wants and then she sleeps on them.

Tito tended to stay in the room with me, so I had another way to keep him cool.

Wet Tito
Here’s a wet and somewhat cooler Tito. I soak a washcloth and then wipe him down. He doesn’t mind at all, as you can see.

The fog has returned for the time being and we’re supposed to have a good rainstorm coming. Yahoo!

And now for a couple of bonus giggles courtesy of I Can Has Cheezburger.

cheezburger cat

cheezburger dog


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Caturday Presents: A Birthday

On this day, many moons ago… Ahem, lemme try again. On this day, in the last century… No, not good. Ok. Once upon a time, this young princess came upon a frog…oops, wrong story. There’s no princess in this one.

Today is Lastech’s birthday. Since his birthday is in October, they wanted to dress up for the occasion and make a card for him. They did, and here it is.

Happy kitties
Tito and Jenny are happy kitties

Birthday card

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Caturday: The Evil That Lurks

Yes, it’s Caturday, but first things first. The proper pronunciation for evil in this context is the same as in the old classic horror films. Instead of pronouncing it as in the name Evel Knievel, it should be pronounced EEeee vill . The first half should be long and drawn out and the second half rhymes with bill. Got it? Good on we go.

Evil lurks in this house, erm, apartment. It has four legs and fur. It also has beautiful baby blue eyes.

basket kitties
Aw, isn’t it sweet and adorable? They love each other

Don’t let the fart monster’s beautiful blue eyes fool you into complacency. She’s evil.

Tito fear
I found Tito hiding in the bathtub with a look of fear on his little kitty face

Why fear? Well, he found this! [cue the theme to Psycho’s shower scene].

Evil Jenny
Evil Jenny lurks

No wonder Tito is scared. I’m scared too. This morning I awoke to find her nibbling on my eyebrows. Then she farted.

So that you don’t have nightmares after that last photo, I’m including an adorable English bulldog named Porter. He doesn’t like his leash. It can be found on cobrakiel’s YouTube page.


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Caturday: shelf monsters and pack rats

As anyone who lives with cats knows, they are mischievous, wicked, naughty, thieving little critters. Some, will steal your food like Kitsy used to do. His preference was bacon, but he would settle for pizza. Some are paper shredders. The Boober’s favorite was the paper towel roll. We used to have to hide the rolls in the cupboard.

Tito is the shelf monster. If it’s on the shelf, it won’t be for long. He’s an expert of knocking items off one at a time. This is quite disturbing at 3am. We learned the hard way that breakable items have to be stored away.

Tito wanted poster

This is what Tito is like in action. His nickname should really be Ruprecht. The important part begins at 3:55 minutes in.

Some, like Miss Jenny, love to steal various items from around the house and hide them in bed. She’s a regular pack rat. Trust me, you don’t go to bed in this apartment without going through the bedding looking for all the stray items. A ballpoint pen in the posterior is not my idea of fun.

Jenny wanted poster

This is just a small sample of the items found in our bed.

toys in bed
Found in bed: One sock, two corks, one mechanical pencil, one screwdriver, one broken clothes hanger, one bottle cap and one black plastic doohumflicky


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Caturday on a Sunday

The kitties were about to have their moment in the sun yesterday when we learned of the passing of Neil Armstrong. As the commander of Apollo 11 and the first man to set foot on the moon, we just had to honor him instead.

Now it’s time for the kitties to shine.

Tito and his new blanket
A wonderful friend, StateOfGrace gave our kitties a couple of lovely little blankets. I was finally able to get a photo of Tito with his. Thank You StateOfGrace.
Queen Jenny
Miss Nightshade Jenny is queen of all she surveys

Who let the dogs out?

And now we leave you with a singing cockatiel.


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Caturday: Time for the Furkids to Shine

Another Caturday has rolled around and it’s time for the furkids to shine a bit. Things are settling down since the loss of Kitsy. Tito and Miss Nightshade Jenny are slowly adjusting. They miss him and it shows, but they’re taking a lot of comfort in each other. I still haven’t been able to write a fitting memorial for my little clown, so it’s going to wait for a while. In the meantime, here are our sweet furballs.

Tito
Tito is watching from the bookcase. Recently his vocabulary has grown. He no longer just says “MEE!”. He hmrows and coos and has even yelled a time or two. It’s downright impressive.

Here is Miss Nightshade Jenny snoozing on a crochet pad. The pad and the ball were a gift from our lovely friend StateOfGrace.

Sweet dreams
She looks like an angel when she sleeps. Don’t let that fool you. She’s Basement Cat’s minion when she’s awake. We wouldn’t have her any other way.
Love
Love: They haz it

The Olympics are over for another couple of years, but I thought I would leave you with this great vid by klusmanp at YouTube.


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Caturday: four legged Klingons

“And they call it kitty love…”

That’s where the cuteness ends: Jenny starts by kissing on Tito, they exchange a few licks, and settle down for a minute, maybe a few seconds.

Tito & Jenny on love cushion
The quiet before the storm

Then the wrestling begins. The headlocks and body slamming, what every Trekker recognizes as the Klingon mating ritual, somewhat different from the Vulcan mating ritual which also involves ass kicking, but of a Starship Captain.

Star Trek yourself
Someone could get hurt…

As I type this, for instance, Jenny is still greeting me home, dancing figure eights under the chair, pawing at my leg and grabbing my arm to rub against. With purring and claws. I’m already bleeding in three spots. I got bit. Not too hard but firmly.

I will show you a paper tiger
I will show you a paper tiger

Must be the Tortie (Tortoiseshell) in her, the little brute. As a wrestler, she has a very solid stance: wide with hind legs bent. We saw her more than once using this position to wrap Tito in an embrace before slamming him down. Then again, he gives as good as he gets, and even has her retreating often, though never for long. Never for long.

I’m bleeding from a fourth scratch now.

Jenny will also walk on my pillow stopping just long enough to nom on my skull. If I pet her, which I always do, she farts. If my wife leans over to nose bonk her, Jenny’ll cough in her face, like Carol Beer on “Little Britain”:

Her newest trick: not a cough, but a vurp (a burp which sounds vomitous). All I can say is thank Ceiling Cat she doesn’t eat mice. Things are gross enough. Annnnd, I’ve got an eighth scratch… Well, a puncture, more like… Still, I feel like one of Jack the Ripper’s playthings.


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