Hillbillies, Royalty and Businessmen

When I look at my mancats, I am amazed how distinct their personalities are. Yes they all eat, sleep, bathe and do the normal cat things, but they do them so differently!

The boys...different but pals
Archie is a bit of a bumpkin. This is unintentional of course because he is still just a youngster and the world is one huge bumbling adventure. He possesses no “cat cool”, his affection is fervent and obvious much to the chagrin of the others I’m sure. While Casper and Ben saunter with nonchalance, Archie runs impetuously into the middle of any situation on stiff legs with his head and tocks high in the air.

Of the boys, Ben is the typical middle child, intense, serious and a little brooding. If he were human he’d have to be a Bay Street executive because as a tuxy he is too well-dressed for a beatnik poet.

Casper is noble to the core in looks and demeanor.  He is patient, cool and regal, a million miles away from brother Archie. However different though, the boys live in harmony regardless of their varying backgrounds…which we could all take a lesson from!

Then just when I think I have a created this perfect little Shangri-La, I have to consider Molly who is diva, queen, and supreme being all rolled into one. Even her advanced age does not soften her heart and she turns her nose up at her brethren on the other side of her door considering them ridiculous peons who are NOT to be associated with!
 High Priestess Molly


Mancat Monday

Real men mancats hug don't they? 

Ok, Ok, I admit it they're rasslin'


Scafflaw Week

We interrupt our serious, ahem, arty exploration of "The Close Up Cat" (Molly and Archie's appearances still to come) to bring you our contribution to the Scafflaw naughtiness that is going around the CB this week courtesy of Fin at Housecat Confidential.  Strangely, in sifting through my pictures looking for photographic evidence of wrongdoing, I discover that most of the pictures catch Casper in the act and nobody else (although he maintains it was for demonstration purposes only)!  Well in all fairness Molly is too old for that sort of shenanigans, but what about Ben and Archie?  Archie truly is an innocent babe-in-the-woods cat, but Ben? 

Ben is a rotter if ever there was one, and has managed to cover his cat tracks quite nicely except for THIS huge infraction of the cat Rule #1 Do not mess about on the counters.

Casper very adeptly demonstrates the breaking of a popular rule all over the CB which we will call Rule #2 Do not show overt interest in the flat screen television

Casper on deck with Rule #3 Do not knock the folded laundry onto the floor

Casper tees-up Rule #4 Stay out of the cupboards

Sub-section A of Rule #4 Includes the top of the cupboards

Casper why don't you show us Rule #5 Do not hide in the dryer (nice camouflage btw)

And last but not least Casper disregards the cardinal rule in our house


Easy Like Sunday

Looks to me like a pretty standard Sunday around here:

someone on the sofa...check

someone on the cat tower...check
someone on the mama blanket...check

All is right in the world :-)


Weekend Washing

Want to see what happens when clothes don't make it into the laundry hamper (that big wicker thing in the pictures)?    These are my wonderful Robert's pants and shirts that made it near, but not into the laundry hamper.  When I went to collect the clothes for washing, this is what I found...

Ben snoopervising the fur count on Dad's shirt

Archie trying on big-boy trousers for size

Aren't cats fantastic...they always make me smile!


Ben's Botheration

Last weekend one of my seven “Cat-facts” for the Versatile Blogger Award was that “Ben is a worrier.” My precious tuxy boy is a little serious sometimes and I can always tell from this sort of "pursed" look he gets on his face that he is bothered.

In the comments section of that post, Milo and Alfie from The Cat’s Meow asked me what Ben worries about. A good question, which I’ve tried to answer with the list below:

The Top Ten Things That Ben Worries About

1. Ben worries about his younger brother Archie and keeps a close eye on him. Once when Archie got shut in the upstairs closet Ben paced back and forth in front of it until I figured out that Archie was inside

2. Ben worries if we get a new piece of furniture or rearrange existing furniture and how this might effect the Feng Shui of the house

3. Ben worries if the level of crunchies in the food bowl gets too low (as if they have ever gone without!) and is not too sure about the bowl itself. I bought beautiful new water and food bowls and it took Ben ages to warm up to them, I was afraid he was going to starve!

4. Ben worries about the dispersal of treats and even though I know he doesn’t like them that much he will line up beside Archie for his fair share

5. Ben worries when I take the nail clippers out of the drawer in the kitchen

6. Ben worries if he hears Molly meowing and will immediately run upstairs and sit outside her bedroom door

7. Ben worries when we sit on the back deck as if some tragedy will befall us out there so he stands on his hind legs and watches us through the screen door or from a window perch and scratches on the glass

8. Ben worries when people come over to the house and hides in the upstairs bedroom under the bed

9. Ben worried last Christmas (his first) when we brought a tree into the house -- then quickly adapted

10. Ben worries when I bring the cat carrier upstairs and put it on the dining room table…well I’ll give him that one, it always means a vet visit

***Ben has been extra worried these last few days with so many beloved kitties from the CB going off to the bridge.  He and Molly and Casper and Archie are purring for everyone who is grieving.


Thank you

Molly and I would like to say thank you to all who responded to my post yesterday.  I was doubting my judgement and it has been enormously reassuring to hear from so many mums in the CB who shared their experiences, advice and compassion with me.  I feel that I am armed with a wealth of senior cat information now and the next time I am at the vet to have Molly's blood levels checked we will discuss: sub-q fluids (and how to know when it is time for that),  medication for her nausea and Adequan injections to ease her arthritis!

For those who inquired, Molly still eats and drinks well at this point and also everything is fine at the back end too.  I think one of the key issues will to be to watch her food consumption as it seems the most prevelent symptom of imminent danger is that kitties stop eating.  I will also trust in the fact that I know Molly better than anyone else and I will be able to read the signs she gives me when her time approaches.  For now I am certain that she is happy to be here :-)

I would also like to thank everyone most sincerely who shared a story with me of a cherished kitty who has gone to the bridge.  I could hear your love in every word and I know how painful it can be sometimes to summon those memories.


Seeking Senior Cat Advice

Miss Molly
I would like to ask for the opinions or advice from any mums in the CB who have senior cats. My Molly will be nineteen soon. About three years ago she was diagnosed with hyperthyroid, the vet said the damage to her kidneys was significant and that they were only about 1/3 functioning. He gave her about two years (maximum) to live and prescribed Methimazole. We have passed that estimate by one year now! But, Molly is painfully thin and shaky on her legs, she sleeps all the time, vomits regularly (although in all fairness she always had a jumpy tummy) and despite my constant brushing her fur is covered in mats. However, I believe(d) that she still has quality of life for two reasons:

1. she does not seem to be in any pain

2. she always engages with us and purrs and wants to cuddle

Then the other day when I was at the vet picking up food, I started chatting with a man who was there with his three cats for their annual check-up. He told me that they used to have four cats but their twenty year old had to be put down.

“Really, I have a senior cat too” I said. “Was she ill?”

He replied “Oh yes, she had no quality of life left; she just slept all the time and puked and was covered in mats.”

Gulp, I paid for my food and slunk out of the office. So what I considered to be bearing up well for her age, he considered to be a heinous existence that required euthanasia. I’m sure you can imagine how this made me feel…like a terrible mother who was letting her cat suffer!

This is where I implore anyone who has a cat around Molly’s age to please tell me your experience. Is your cat also afflicted with age related disease? Are you also struggling with what decisions to make? Please help me.


Mancat Monday

Casper and Benjamin conclude some mancat business in the upstairs hallway with a handshake pawshake.

"We'll talk more when the market opens..."


Single on Sunday

Calling all ladycats...Ben is waiting by the phone, literally :-) 

Ben is formally dressed for all occasions in his tuxedo, he is gentle, intelligent and likes a good frolic with a scrunchy toy on a regular basis.  He is looking for a like-minded ladycat for friendship and adventure.


Versatile Blogger

The terrific TK and Squashies from TK-Furrever Home AND marvelous Meowmeowmans from Animal Shelter Volunteer Life passed the Versatile Blogger Award this way and we thank them both very much for thinking of us. As I did it earlier this month, the cats insisted that it is their turn this time, so here are seven lesser known cat-facts about Molly, Casper, Ben and Archie...

1. Ben chirps like a bird constantly and sometimes it verges on yodeling
2. Molly loves to be brushed
3. Casper does not like treats but likes to chew the bag they come in
4. When I first got Molly I had to feed her crunchies one at a time by hand
5. Whenever we rent a dvd, Casper sits close to the tv and watches and sometimes stands on his hind legs to point out the good bits
6. Archie loves to get in the shower with me
7. Ben is a worrier

Now we are supposed to pass this lovely award on to fifteen bloggers who we have recently discovered that we think are great. Since we are still discovering new fabulous bloggers everyday, we don't think we could pick fifteen when there are hundreds in the CB who we haven't met yet. Therefore we would like to offer this award to anyone who has not yet been tagged and would like to join in the fun :-)


Thursday in the Garden

There is still a little happening in the garden, even at this late stage of the summer. Despite oppressive heat, humidity, neglect AND a lack of rain, my garden is doing quite well.  I can't discount the value of old favourites like geraniums and impatients, they just continue along all summer with little fanfare but keep the garden bright and cheery between blooming cycles of the marquee flowers!  I always have several planters and decorative containers spotted around our deck filled with these hard working flowers. There is a surprise picture at the end of this post, so be sure to scroll all the way down!

I snuck this picture of Casper in because it is so cute.  He is not allowed outside at all, but last summer he got onto the back deck and took a moment to smell the flowers :-)

Casper on the deck




Basil (yum, yum)

Purple and White Balloon Flowers

Zebra Grass

Here's the surprise, these cuties live at my parent's house....

Garden Bunnies !


The Mama Blanket

Allow me to introduce you to the mama blanket. For me it is a faux fur throw that I received as a Christmas present a couple of years ago, for the boys it is a little slice of heaven. EVERY SINGLE ONE of them becomes completely Zen and peaceful when they lie on the blanket. I don’t know if the fur simulates a mother cat (hence the name) for them or what. But they all knead and purr and even drool when they are on it and they fall into the most blissful slumber you have ever seen….

The evidence:
Casper and Ben and the Mama Blanket

Casper and Archie and the Mama Blanket

Ben and Archie and the Mama Blanket

Archie and the Mama Blanket

Ben and the Mama Blanket

Casper and the Mama Blanket

I think that covers just about all the possible combinations; except all three of them together on the Mama Blanket...not that would be a great picture!


Tuesday Trio

Doesn't it look like they are about to break out in song?