Thursday, September 19, 2013

Therapy Cat Tales from 9/18/2013

Tabby writes:

Arr, Mateys!  Ye be wonderin' what I have in store for you on this Meow Like a Pirate Day?  Ok, I'll drop the pirate accent and tell you!

Yesterday, Mommy took me visiting again.  She's also training Heimdall to be a therapy cat now, but he's only ridden the bus once so far.  I've ridden it tons of times!  Heimdall's not ready to go visiting to actual nursing homes yet, though.

I had a friend who wanted to come along once we left the house.  He met us at the bus stop and got on the bus with us, then hopped away.  Warning:  this may be scary for young kits!


Yep, it was a grasshopper!  He flew onto my carrier bag and stayed there while we got on the bus, then hopped under a seat once my stroller was folded down.  I had fun watching him!  Do you see that he's smiling?

Mommy and I were both being silly in the morning, and the silliness continued for me once we got to H.  She had gotten some chai tea, but had finished it.  She was getting ready to throw the cup and sleeve in the trash when I decided I wanted the sleeve!

See?  I told you we were being silly!  I didn't wear my new fashion accessory for long, though, because it pushed the fur around my eyes back and felt funny.  It was fun to try on, anyway!

A few of our friends had passed away during the last month.  That's the downside to visiting where we do, and especially with only visiting once a month like we do now.  However, it also means that we get new friends to visit with, since the empty rooms fill up again.

One room had two people in it, a husband and wife, who had just celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary!  Wow!  Mommy wished them happy anniversary, and I snuggled with both of them while the humans talked.  They wanted to know all about my training, how long I'd been working as a therapy cat, and "my numbers", as the husband put it.  He meant my age, weight, etc., but couldn't think of how to say all of that together.  We knew what he meant, though, and that was a perfect way to say it!

I got to see my three favorite friends:  A.M, F., and R.  A.M. knows just how to scritch my chin in the right place and always makes me so relaxed that I simply melt in her lap!  I always climb from my stroller into her lap, then snuggle in her arms while she pets me and scritches my chin, closing my eyes in happiness and purring loudly for her.  When I visit F., I always hop out of my stroller and walk into his room on my own, with Mommy follwing holding my leash.  I sometimes need reminding that he's in his recliner instead of in bed, though.  He has a recliner like Daddy does, so I snuggle on his lap like I do with Daddy.  F. always tells me I'm the most beautiful kitty in the world!  R. loves to tell us stories about her kitty, who ate food out of a spoon and tried to catch birds by climbing out on the limb the bird feeder was on, crashing everything to the ground and running away.  No matter how many times we hear the story, it's always funny!  She calls me the same name as her kitty, but that doesn't bother me a bit.  I know she means me.  I just look so much like her kitty that she forgets my name and substitutes his.

After visiting at H. for a while, we went over to our new visiting place, C.  We've been visiting there for three months now.  We only have one regular, but then we ride the elevator back down to check if there are any other people who want visitors.

At C., there is one man who sits in a big chair in the lobby and greets everyone going out or coming in.  He always likes seeing me.  When Mommy was signing us in, I asked to hop onto the check-in counter.  All of a sudden, the man behind the counter looked up, and I was staring down at him!  "Oh, SNAP!" he said, in a very startled voice!  He then petted me and laughed.

I wanted to walk up the stairs in the lobby, but Mommy reminded me that she couldn't carry the stroller up all those stairs.  I still wanted to do the stairs, because I absolutely love stairs, so she said I could go up to the first landing!  Yay!  I walked up to the first landing, then walked back down.

We went to see the lady we visit each time, but she didn't have very long to visit with us this time.  She had to get a few things organized for her daughter-in-law, who was coming to visit her.  That's fine.  We went back to the lobby, and they told us that possibly some people on two other floors would like to see us.  We went to one of those floors, but no one on that floor wanted a visit.  We tried the other floor, and found a lady who wanted a visitor.  She was feeling very lonely, so having us come brightened up her whole day.  That's why we do this!

On the bus on the way home, we sat in between people who wanted to talk.  There was a man who is a published young-adult fiction author (M.T. Dreams), a lady who feeds and T-N-R's feral cats, and a lady who is interested in buying Mommy's newest book (Three Feral Kittens, just now published and available from  We will be having a book launch party for Three Feral Kittens on October 12th.  It will be online, but we haven't decided on a time yet.

When we got back home, Mommy checked her e-mail and got some more exciting news!  She is on the mailing list for the NW Pet and Companion Fair that takes place every April.  She had contacted them about doing a talk about my training for their stage shows, and they accepted!  We don't know what time slot we'll be put in, but it will be fun no matter what!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Book Reveal: Three Feral Kittens!

Rori writes:

As the Big Kitty of the House, I sometimes get to make Very Important Announcements.  I have one today!  The kitties of the PDX pride would like to introduce our new book, which will be available on the first week of October.  That's just in time for National Feral Cat Day on October 16th!

Here is our official press release:

Three Feral Kittens is a new children's nonfiction book for grades 2 through 4.  It tells the story of three kittens that were born in the woods bordering the author's backyard and grew up in her yard.  This book is illustrated with photographs, making it a unique journal and an excellent way for children to learn about feral cats.  It will be available from in paperback and Kindle formats on October 16, 2013.  A portion of the proceeds from this book will go to the Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon to help provide spay, neuter, and vaccination services for feral cats as well as education services for feral cat caretakers.

We have a Facebook page set up for the book here, and will be having an online book launch party, time, date, and place to be determined and announced later.  The book launch party will be open to all, because it will be on a regular website.

If you are a regular reader of our blog, you can guess who the three kittens are!  The book, since it's written for children, stops when all three are still safe in their respective homes:  one inside with his new mommy, one inside-outside but safe, and one still feral.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Mini Mancat Monday: Learning about Snuggles!

Panther writes:

Yesterday, Mommy and Daddy were watching TV from the couch, but then Daddy fell asleep in the chair.  I don't like the TV, because I don't want those people and things coming out of the box and into the room.  Everyone tells me that they stay in the box, but I still don't quite believe it.  Anyway, Mommy was still on the couch.  Freya climbed up to sit with her and get some pets.  That looked like it was nice, so I went over to see if I could get some pets, too.

I walked by the couch.  Mommy petted me a couple times, then made a clicky sound and called me up, patting the couch.  I wasn't sure, so I put my front paws on the couch.  Was I really allowed up there, or was it someplace for the inside-only kitties to be but not for me?  No, she really was calling me up there!  I hopped up on the couch, then walked over to Mommy.  I got pets!  She really did want me to be up there!  I walked all the way over Mommy's side, then headbutted her chin while she petted me.  Thank you, Mommy, for allowing me to do all the things the inside kitties do!  I hopped back down, but then hopped back up and did the whole thing again, just to be sure.  I got more pets, so I tried it again.  Yep, it worked a third time, too!

After that, I decided I'd had enough of figuring out snuggles and the couch.  I went off to play with a roller, which is a tube from the inside of a doggy poop bag roll.  The humans here use those bags to bring the box stuff out to the garbage.  Very strange, but I'm glad they come with the rollers inside the bag rolls, so I can play with those!  I went hopping sideways around the living room after my roller, while Mommy giggled and Freya looked on with pride.  Freya's becoming my inside mama cat, at least for a while until I get my forever home.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Foster & Former Feral Friday: Panther & the Box

Panther writes:

Hi, everyone!  Remember when I wrote that I was having trouble figuring out why I was supposed to do my business in that box thing?  Well, I figured it out yesterday!!!!!  I've been in for almost 24 hours now, and I was a good boy using the box for both pee and poop!  I even demonstrated it for Mommy when she came home, although I already had demonstrated it for Daddy earlier in the day.  Both of them are so proud of me, and my foster aunties and uncles are so proud of me, too.  They even followed me into the potty room to make sure that I was using it properly.

Thanks, everyone for your comments and suggestions, but I ended up figuring it out all by myself!

Rori writes:

Wow!  It's my Gotcha Day anniversary already?  Mommy and Daddy can't believe that it's been 6 years since the day that Mommy Erin came running inside yelling about baby kittens crossing the road!  You can see me in the picture with Panther above, but the picture below is the first one of me, when I was 4 weeks old, with Mommy Erin.  She was my first mommy, then Mommy and Daddy adopted me when Mommy Erin wasn't able to keep me after she moved out.  She still loves me, though, and finds me to say hi every time she can.

I had hidden in an old tire in the neighbor's yard.  Mommy Erin and Mommy went into the yard and picked me out of the tire, then brought me into the house to have Daddy watch me while they went to get my brother.  Here's a picture of us after we'd been cleaned up and fluffed up:

Monday, September 2, 2013

Monday Mystery: Why is Tabby there?

Starla:  Mom-my!  Tabby's under the dres-ser!

Tabby:  Tell Mommy to get me out, please.

Starla:  *crouches down to see Tabby better*  How did you even get under there?

Tabby:  I don't know.  I can't get out by myself!

Mommy:  Starla, is Tabby under the dresser?

Starla:  Yes, Mommy!  *still crouching down to see her*

Tabby:  *waits patiently to be rescued*

Mommy:  *takes the bottom drawer out*

Starla:  *backs up so Tabby can come out*

Tabby:  *hops out through the drawer hole*  Thank you, Mommy!  Thank you, Starla!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Strolling Sunday: Heimdall's Star Wars Adventure!

Heimdall writes:

I went on a grand adventure today!  Yes, I am wearing a Yoda hat with ears in that picture.  I'll explain why!

Mommy needed to go to the store to get litter for both our boxes, plus she'd gotten an e-mail from Petco that the new Star Wars toys, collars, and dress-up things were on the shelves.  They were giving away the Yoda hat to anyone who bought something from the Star Wars collection today, and Mommy thought it would look cute for us for dress-up.  I won't wear clothes, but I do like collars, harnesses, and hats!

Mommy knew I needed a new harness, because the blue mesh ones my sister and I got when we were kittens are too small for us now.  Mommy took it out to take the leash off, and I immediately begged for it.  I remembered what it was, and wanted to wear it to go into the garage or wherever I was allowed, because I knew I was allowed unusual places with the harness!  Mommy tried it on me for a laugh, and I looked very disappointed that it didn't fit anymore.  She said I could wear Tabby's harness until we got to the store and got me fitted for my new one.

I didn't like Tabby's harness.  I'm used to my walking jacket, and Tabby's harness is a loop one.  Not the same feel at all.  I wore it, but under protest.  I bit it first, then Mommy said the first loop went over my head.  I agreed to try it, so she put it on me.  I kept wanting to bite it as she was fastening it, because it looks like a giant string to me.  Another reason to get a walking jacket one!

Finally, I was harnessed.  Mommy put me into the carrier bag and I figured out how to lie down in it.  Once again, I've grown so much since I was last in it that I had to get used to it again.  Then I was put in the stroller and off we went to the bus stop!

I didn't like the bus.  I kept on squeaking to Mommy about it, but she wouldn't let me out to sit in her lap like I wanted.  Luckily, I speak softly, so I didn't disturb the other bus riders or the driver.  Everyone on the bus said what a good rider I was, and Mommy thought I was, too.  This was my first time riding the bus!  I got used to most of it after this first ride, though, and did well on the way back.

Once we were off the bus, Mommy let me out again to ride in the stroller.  I do this at home, so I knew how to sit while Mommy pushed me.  I commented on everything!  Cars, grass, trees, a big parking lot, people, wow!!!!!

Hey, there's a sidewalk!  Mommy, can I get out and rest for a few minutes?  It's hot out here, and that looks like a nice spot to relax.

Mommy let me rest here for a bit and petted me while we talked about all the things happening around us.  There were people walking in and out of a store, cars parking and leaving, and a bike going by, as well as big strollers called shopping carts.  It all was very overwhelming!

Yes, I'm giving Mommy the stink-eye!  She put three harnesses on me!  At one point, I ran away from her into the dog beds on the bottom shelf by the harnesses and she had to crawl in and get me.  I was a good boy and only ran into that shelf, instead of running anywhere else in Petco.  So many people, smells, and things happening!  Mommy said I did very well for my first time out, though.  She was quite impressed with me.  I only ran away twice:  once in the dog beds and once in the litter bags while we were getting litter.  A saleslady helped get me out and thought I was doing very well for my first time out, too.  Another customer had a dog and that's what scared me by the litter.  It was a big golden retriever, and I'd never seen a big dog up close before!  It was very good and sat when its person told it to, though.

A good Yoda do I make!

This was while we were waiting for the bus to take us back home.  I got to sit by Mommy on the bench.  I liked the ears and didn't try to taste them like I had with the string harness.  See my handsome new, green harness that matches the ears?

 Any day that ends with catnip mice is ok with me!

Yep, it's a stormtrooper mouse!