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Posts Tagged ‘Studley’

Most frequently asked question I get, absolutely, is “How many cats do you HAVE?”

One of the other frequent questions: “Do they all get along?”

Answer – no, not really. My three girls (Jellybean, Rumpelmintz, and Kitty.com) do NOT like other cats. They have a tendency to whine/growl/scream/cry in other cats’ presence. In particular, Jellybean and Rumpelmintz fear Studley greatly and aren’t keen on Louie. Ralph is Mr. Agreeable and loves everyone and everything. The girls still bop him on the head on occasion – but even for them, it’s hard to not like that sweet little face of Ralph’s.

My boys are pretty good friends, on the other hand. I LOVE it when my cats get along, and groom each other, and cuddle together, and play together…. if there’s anything cuter than my adorable cats, it’s my adorable cats appreciating each other as sweet loving furry beings.

Louie and Ralph snuggling

Louie and Ralph snuggling

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The cats’ “Aunt Terry” gave them a new pet tent for camping in the kitchen. It’s an adorable pop-up tent – I think she got it at Big Lots.

Jellybean was first to fall in love with it. (At least until what must have been some “blitz attack” because one day I discovered poop in the tent as well as lots of fur tufts nearby – and Jellybean hasn’t really used the tent since.)

Jellybean comfy in the tent

Jellybean comfy in the tent

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My friend Adrienne suggested perhaps what my blog needs is more pictures of my cute cats.  My cats ARE very very cute, in my opinion.  Oh, they’re a little rough around the edges, most of them, and they’re not babies (the youngest is about ten years old) but I think they are pretty much adorable most of the time – when they’re not fighting amongst each other or acting as destructive forces of other sorts, or just annoying the crud out of me… they’re VERY cute.

Anyway, a few weeks ago we held a “catnip wake” in honor of Afer, Omaha, and several of our friends’ cats that passed away recently (including Rumpelmintz’s cyber-boyfriend and Studley’s cyber-girlfriend/wife).

The wake started with an assortment of catnip toys. Jellybean did not participate. Catnip toys are not sufficient lure for her to leave her perch on top of the kitchen cat tree and chance proximity to the other cats.

Catnip wake

Catnip wake

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I’m not the world’s best “piller”, but I consider myself fairly adept at medicating cats. Not only have I had (and have) several cats with medical needs, but I also volunteered for a few years in a cat shelter’s clinic. I can pop a pill down an average cat’s throat. For your “more difficult” cat, I’ve learned most of the “tricks” – using a pill gun, “hiding” the pill in food, a bit of cheese, a bit of cream cheese, a bit of real mayonnaise, a soft treat…

You can get many, if not most, medications compounded into flavored liquids or even treats, which can make medicating the difficult cat a lot easier. Some medications can be compounded into transdermel gels you rub on the ear.

Pill Pockets are a handy little trick in the medicating bag. The ingredients make me cringe (corn syrup? pregelantized corn? wheat flour? wheat gluten? starch? soy protean?) However, they are relatively inexpensive, readily available, and easy to use. So, when I found out I’d be medicating my formerly-feral one-eyed wonder cat, Studley, I decided to go with Pill Pockets when cheese failed me. (Cheese “breaded” in freeze-dried turkey treat crumbs did work nicely, but I’m admittedly too lazy to prepare elaborate appetizers for my cat twice a day.)
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We had a ton of storms yesterday.  Lots of rain, thunder, and lightening.  For once, I got lucky and I actually landed up commuting when it wasn’t horrible out and got home pretty dry.  I was nearly done with evening “cat chores” when the radio announced there were three of four tornadoes sited.  One was destined to reach a neighborhood very close to mine in ten minutes. 

What to do?  Of course it wasn’t my neighborhood, but it was close enough that did I really want to take that risk?  Not like I could manage to get eight cats downstairs quickly.  So, I sprang into action (and if you knew me, you’d know just how ludicrous the idea of me “springing” into anything is.)

I finished giving Afer her sub-q fluids, then dished out their food.  Why would I choose to feed my cats at this moment?  Easy – so they’d stay put, in the kitchen, and I didn’t have to chase them all over the house.
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My friend Heather has inspired me to make some small steps toward being more eco-friendly. I started with some easy things. Rather than scooping the litter boxes and putting the “nasties” in an empty (used for cat food) plastic freezer bag, I’d use paper bags. Hopefully, even though they’re still going to landfills they’ll eventually disintegrate so future generations aren’t dealing with plastic bags full of cat poo. Also, rather than putting the homemade cat food in those plastic freezer bags, I’m using plastic tubs, which can be washed and reused. Baby steps.

The drawback to the tubs is the food takes much longer to warm than in the bags. I was tossing a bag of food in a bowl of warm water before meals, doing some other things, then pulling it out and serving. I’m doing the same with the tubs, but perhaps because they float so they’re not surrounded by warm water, they just don’t warm nearly as quickly. This morning, the food was still cold – still frozen in the center, but I had to get going (see Late-ness) so I just stirred it up and served it.

The cats were HORRIFIED. Louie didn’t eat. Afer ate only a little. Omaha barely nibbled. Rumpelmintz was yelling and complaining and hitting other cats for eating any of the cold breakfast, as they might convince me this was acceptable.

Studley and Latifah still ate well. Latifah ate her own and tried to finish everyone else’s. She said she didn’t mind.

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I planned an “early night” last night.  I was plenty tired, because of the time change, and thought it’d be a good opportunity to catch up on some sleep.  It was a disappointment. 

It took me a while to fall asleep – then I woke up around 2:00 because my legs hurt – so I rubbed menthol gel on them.  Then I woke up around 3:00 because Studley was playing “How loud can I make Jellybean scream” and Louie was cheering him on, so I made both boys leave the den and I shut the den door.  Then I woke up around 4:00 because Omaha and Rumpelmintz were fighting over who got to sleep on my right side.  Then I woke up around 5:00 because Latifah decided to come upstairs into the bedroom and was fighting with Omaha… so I let her go in the den with Jellybean.

I got up this morning to find Latifah had pooped on the bathroom floor, Omaha had pooped in his pants, and one of the cats had a hairball in the living room.  There was also a “shortbread cookie heist” in the den.  The cats had managed to get a tub of Trader Joe’s shortbread cookies off the top of the desk, get the lid off, and there were shortbread cookies with bites out of them all over the floor, desk, etc.  (When I questioned them about it, they said they did it to save me from the cookies.)  My suspicion on the shortbread cookie massacre is that either:

1) As part of the “Let’s see how loud we can make Jellybean scream” game, Jellybean climbed up to on top of the desk, and knocked the tub of cookies off the desk and the lid came off when they hit the floor – and the cats tested them to see if they were any good. (I didn’t notice them when I made the boys leave the room – but it was dark and I was half-asleep so I just removed larger furry objects, leaving smaller screaming furry objects in the room, and shut the door.)

or

2) Jellybean and Latifah were in cahoots and managed to get them off the desk and tasted while they were in there together.

or

3)  A combination of the above.

Latifah and Jellybean are the most likely suspects for the little kitty bite-sized missing bits from the cookies, as they are both carbohydrate addicts. Jellybean has been caught red-handed eating bites out of a blueberry waffle before…. and staff at the shelter used to laugh at how they could feed Latifah bites of bread.  Jellybean’s blood sugar was only 90 this morning (still no insulin since Dec. 31, 2006!), whereas Latifah’s blood sugar was 225 – further indicating Latifah in the crime.

I also discovered this morning that my favorite radio station, which was all music, all the time (no annoying talk), with a wide variety of music – had suddenly changed formats to all talk, all the time.  

To top off the morning, Studley sprayed pee on the back door, then Omaha pooped on the bedroom floor.  Glorious morning.  One bit of happiness – I started reading the “Crazy Aunt Purl” book, aka “Drunk, Divorced & Covered with Cat Hair”.  It is not a disappointment.  Though I don’t knit, I love Laurie Perry’s style of writing, and who can’t relate to her feelings of disappointment and frustration with life. The first chapter, where she has to resort to repairing her skirt at work with staples, is priceless.  If you haven’t already, you should check out her blog at crazyauntpurl.com, and buy her book!

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Studley

Studley

Studley is the one-eyed wonder cat.

Studley was a stray in my friend’s neighborhood. He was “servicing” the unspayed females, so he earned the nickname the “Stud cat” which eventually became “Studley”. My friend was patient, and gradually befriended Studley by feeding him. The only shelters in her area euthanized unadopted cats after a few days, so she knew a timid adult tomcat had little to no chance. She asked if I could get him into one of the “no-kill” shelters near me. I agreed.

She transported Studley to me in late August, 2002. At under 11 pounds, this large guy was thin and all muscle. The vet at the low-cost spay/neuter clinic I took him to expressed amazement at his muscular forearms and tight abs.

A shelter I adopted from in the past agreed to show Studley on their website, if I continued to foster him and I did. After several months of no inquiries, I grew increasingly attached to this gentle giant and I decided to adopt him myself. When you have three cats, what’s one more?

Studley’s gradually learned to trust me more and more. He’ll come up for pets now, and sleep with me at night. He enjoys cuddling, grooming, and wrestling with the other boy cats. He gained a lot of weight with free access to food. He lost two pounds when we eliminated dry food, but is still over weight and I have to watch his portions and that he doesn’t “help” the other cats with their leftovers.

Studley had to have one eye removed in March 2005, due to severely high eye pressure caused by glaucoma. They found cysts all along his optic nerve. His other eye showed signs of deterioration as well, but is currently stable. In February 2006, I noticed a small cyst or bump on Studley’s left cheek. The vet didn’t think it was anything to worry about – but in April it was still there and on April 14 I asked that they remove it. To my shock and dismay, the biopsy report came back that it was cancer and they had not gotten it all. We consulted with an oncologist, and she felt a second surgery was our best option. They made a second elliptical cut around the first one, and removed the slightly enlarged lymph node. Histograph results indicated they got it all.

Hopefully, Studley is finished demonstrating his amazing ability to grow unusual cells.

Studley

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