Do Your Cats Act Differently When Autumn Arrives?

Posted October 28th, 2014 by admin

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It’s already about a month into autumn and you can definitely tell that the season has changed. The leaves on the trees are starting to change colors, the acorns and walnuts are dropping from the trees, and the leaves are now readily beginning to fall off of the trees. The flowers have all but faded away, except for the chrysanthemums and pansies on our front porch. The air is cool and crisp. The grass seems to be damp with dew each morning, with a slight frosty sheen on the colder mornings. The cool breeze and the colder weather are even starting to make these old bones creak, though I won’t admit it out loud.

Cat and pumpkin, autumn by Shutterstock.com

As for my kitties, they are feeling the weather change, too. However, they seem to like it getting cooler. 

Momma Kitty is spending more time inside of our garage by taking advantage of her heated cat bed. Since daylight is becoming more scarce, she is spending more time sleeping and lounging around inside of the garage area that she likes so well. However, during the daylight hours, she is up and at it. When the sun peeks through the clouds, she always seems to find the right spot to sun herself. She will explore the bushes, trees, and faded flower beds. The berries are falling from the bushes, acorns and pine cones are plentiful, and leaves can even provide some extra entertainment for her this time of year.

This time of year also brings extra excitement and interest to the rest of her kitty family as well.

Getting into autumn mischief by eating some pumpkin. (Photo by Tim Link)

Mice, chipmunks, and squirrels are more active, preparing themselves for the colder season that is right around the corner. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always bode so well for the smaller critters, because Rusty is an expert hunter and seems to thrive during this time of the year. Just the other day I was outside preparing the kitties’ wet food for the evening. 

No way am I leaving my heated bed. (Photo by Tim Link)

On most nights, Momma Kitty and Rusty will come running as soon as they smell it, but they seemed to be preoccupied with something. As I went in for a closer look, Rusty made a run for it while proudly displaying a freshly caught mouse. I never have understood why he prefers a mouse over his favorite food. I guess I’ll leave that one for the feline behaviorists and natural instincts to explain.

I make sure to keep a close eye on my ferals especially during this time of year. It’s easy for them to lose track of what they should be doing and spend more time investigating things and areas that may lead to trouble. With Halloween right around the corner, there are more potential encounters with people that an outdoor feral cat should avoid. There are also some hidden environmental dangers like mushrooms, rodenticides, antifreeze, and other poisons that can be hazardous or even deadly if consumed by a cat.  

“Me? Get into trouble?” (Photo by Tim Link)

For now, I think I’ll put my favorite cozy hoodie on and go outside to spend some time with my kitties. In a couple of months, neither of us will want to leave our heated beds.

Do your cats know when autumn arrives? Share your stories on Catster!

Here’s how to keep your cats safe as the weather turns:  

About Tim Link: All-American guy who loves to rock out to Queen while consuming pizza and Pinot Noir and prefers to associate with open-minded people who love all critters. Considers himself to be the literal voice for all animals. Author, writer, radio host, Reiki Master, Animal Communicator and consultant at Wagging Tales.  

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    Daily GIFs: October 28, 2014

    Posted October 28th, 2014 by admin

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    Getting through the day can be tough, but you know what makes it easier? Adorable GIFs. Check out these furry mini-flicks floating around the Internet. It’s probably the cutest way to waste time and wait for the weekend.

    1. “You ruin everything, Bob!”

    2. Diversionary tactics at their best.

    3. “I’m feeling very light on my feet.”

    4. “What’d you say about my feathers?!”

    5. Panda kisses.


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      Grabbed from link

      Those of us who love cats know that so many cats need help. How can we possibly make a dent in the problem of overpopulation, abandonment, and disease — not to mention other issues? I think it’s important to remember that one person can’t do it all, but we can each make a difference in our own way, whether it’s one small action or something more newsworthy.

      I also believe that what we do will be most effective if it aligns with our own personal talents and tendencies. You may like to make a difference in a quiet, behind-the-scenes way, or in a bigger fashion. It’s all good. When problems feel overwhelming and big, focus on what you CAN do.

      Here are some of my initial thoughts — I’m sure there are many more ideas that can be added to this list.

      1. Spay and neuter

      Spay and neuter your pets. This saves endless potential future generations of kittens from being born, and potentially suffering abandonment, death, or a possible very hard life. This is such a simple thing to do. If you’re strapped for funds, look into low cost spay/neuter resources in your area. As I learned a few months ago when writing on this topic, kittens can be fixed quite young (see the comments). This further lowers the probability that a very young cat could get pregnant and produce more kittens.

      2. Trap-Neuter-Return

      As a writer about cats, I’ve met more and more people who help with feral cat care. Some organizations, like Felines and Friends Foundation of Vermont, have received grants to support their TNR work. If you want to help ferals, learn how to trap and release them, and learn about providing shelter. Neighborhood Cats TNR Manual is an extensive guide to feral cat care.

      3. Donate food and supplies when one of your animals pass on, or donate anyway

      We just had a dog pass on, and she had gotten very fussy at the end about what kind of dry food she would eat. We tested a bunch of really good food, and ended up with an excess, since she seemed to only want canned food. I took a trip to a local animal shelter for the first time and donated a bunch of dog and cat food. The shelter was quite appreciative and I got an informal tour. I was very impressed and am going to volunteer there. 

      You can also donate your unused medications for a pet who has passed on, if your local vet will take them. One vet I knew set these aside for clients who couldn’t afford the meds. It all helps and is appreciated — we’ve probably all been in a spot where medical care for our cats was a challenge budget-wise.

      A vehicle full of trapped free-roaming cats who will be spay/neutered and released — on the way to the vet. Photo courtesy of Felines and Friends Foundation.

      4. Start a food bank for those who can’t afford cat food

      In my old town, the local vet had started a food bank for area people who could not afford to feed their pets. Think about how many pets are given up because the owners felt they couldn’t afford pet care. This is an ingenious idea, and could be worked in sync with a local food shelf, or any central gathering place.

      5. Adopt from a shelter

      Every cat we adopt from a shelter creates room for another cat needing to come in. In some cases, it may save a cat from euthanasia. Get familiar with your local shelters. Volunteer! This also helps, and time spent with the cats helps socialize them and make them more adoptable. 

      6. Consider adopting a special needs or older cat

      Obviously, these cats often get passed over in favor of younger or healthier cats. It could be worrisome to adopt a cat that you might not have for many years. But you would be giving that cat a great gift — a good home for his remaining life. When I adopted Kali Ma, she was young and healthy, but I was amazed to learn that people had passed her by because she had three legs. Apparently people feared this kind of “special need.” I hope that thought has evolved since then. Kali lived to be almost 18.

      7. Support your favorite animal welfare organization

      You’re going to be most excited about something that resonates with you, so support the organizations that are doing the work you most care about (or do some work yourself). If you care passionately about TNR and feral populations, put your focus on helping in these arenas. If you love to foster, focus on that. If you can’t house another cat, help your favorite organizations in other ways — cleaning, volunteering, PR and writing, mailings, etc.

      8. Host a fundraiser

      Host a fundraiser to help cats, or become involved in one. This can be as simple or as involved as you want to make it.

      9. Teach others and lead by example

      I’ve been amazed at how effective this is, and you can do this without even trying. If you treat your cats well, people will notice. Sometimes they will even comment. Perhaps it helps others to see what a rich relationship is possible with our cats, with some time, attention, and love. This makes more of an impact than we realize.

      10. Open up a space in your home if you can

      Can you take a cat? Be honest with yourself — you’re not doing anyone any favors if it’s impossible for you to take or support another animal. However, if you have the means and the desire, you’re providing a huge gift for the lucky animal. If you can’t adopt a cat, can you foster?

      11. Educate

      TNR activists I know post educational flyers and material around their neighborhood. Even just sharing the story, for example, of a feral cat that you may have rescued or TNR-ed might educate someone who hears the story.

      These realizations are always surprising to me. I recently talked at a church about the human/animal-companion bond. When I was done, a woman came up to me. She said she had really been hurting after the loss of her cat in January, but after hearing me speak, was actually considering opening her heart and adopting again. That surprised me but made me happy.

      I am sure there are many many ways that we can help to continuing improving the welfare of cats. What are some of the things you’ve done, or could suggest?

      More by Catherine Holm:

      About Catherine Holm: Told that she is funny but doesn’t know it, accused of being an unintentional con artist by her husband, quiet, with frequent unannounced bursts into dancing liveliness, Cat Holm loves writing about, working for, and living with cats. She is the author of The Great Purr (cat fantasy novel out June 1), the cat-themed memoir Driving with Cats: Ours for a Short Time, the creator of Ann Catanzaro cat fantasy story gift books, and the author of two short story collections. She loves to dance, be outside whenever possible, read, play with cats, make music, do and teach yoga, and write. Cat lives in the woods, which she loves as much as really dark chocolate, and gets regular inspiration shots along with her double espresso shots from the city.

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        TAIPEI – Animal rights group PETA on Monday praised Taiwanese police for raiding a club which organised gambling on pigeon races, claiming that such races kill 1.5 million birds a year on the island.

        Philippines Taiwan Pigeon Racing

        Credit: Associated Press

        Agents from The Criminal Investigation Bureau last week searched the office of the club in the southern city of Kaohsiung and froze about Tw$120 million ($3.95 million) in assets.

        Police also detained three employees on charges of violating the animal protection law and illegal gambling.

        The move came in response to complaints from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) about the pigeon race gambling industry.

        “Taiwan authorities have shown the world that they take the accusation that pigeon racing is a cruel front for illegal gambling very seriously,” Jason Baker, vice president of international operations for PETA Asia, said in a statement.

        “Taiwan’s pigeon-racing industry is the most extreme, most deadly, and most crime-ridden in the world.”

        PETA said earlier this year that a five-month investigation it carried out in Taiwan found that races often proved fatal for pigeons released hundreds of kilometres offshore and forced to fly home.

        More than 30,000 Taiwanese pigeon breeders race about two million pigeons each year, of which an estimated 1.5 million die, according to the group.

        MORE ON PAWNATION: ‘Girlie’ Gorilla Gorges on Gourmet Birthday Cake at London Zoo

         

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          Daily GIFs: October 24, 2014

          Posted October 25th, 2014 by admin

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          Getting through the day can be tough, but you know what makes it easier? Adorable GIFs. Check out these furry mini-flicks floating around the Internet. It’s probably the cutest way to waste time and wait for the weekend.

          1. Just like “The Matrix.”

          2. Not even fazed.

          3. Exploring the unknown.

          4. Parkour!

          5. “This is mesmerizing, but how do I get it out?”


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            Videos We Love: Crazy Cat Lady Costumes for Halloween

            Posted October 25th, 2014 by admin

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            If you share your home with feline friends, odds are you’ve been called a crazy cat lady at some point — even if the person who said it was joking and meant well. I only have two cats, but I tell everyone I love them like family and constantly assault Facebook with their adorable photos.

            Here’s Bubba Lee Kinsey dressed as a little businessman for Halloween last year. That skull and crossbones on his tie says, “I think jean Friday is a sign of weakness.”

            My fascination with these majestic beasts has earned me the title crazy cat lady more than once. In fact, one time I was gifted a mug bearing these words, and I use it with the same pride as anyone who’s been dubbed No. 1 Dad or World’s Best Golfer. 

            So, I figure, why not embrace the stereotype this Halloween and dress like the craziest of crazy cat ladies this side of crazy town? Here are five videos and photos to show how it’s done.

            1. Crazy cat lady costume tutorial

            This young makeup wiz turns herself into a pale, bedraggled woman who spends too much time cleaning litter boxes to see the sun using nothing more than a little eyeliner, concealer, and foundation — and her three cats, of course.

            2. How to do it wrong

            The origin of this video is murky; from what I can gather, it was a submission to some kind of Halloween costume contest. In any case, it looks straight out of a horror flick — like, now that I’ve watched this, I’m pretty sure I’m under some kind of curse. Any minute I’m expecting a whispered phone call saying, “Seven days.”

            3. How to do it right

            This little girl gets the idea.

            She might be just a kid, but this little girl knows how to wrangle a flock of felines. She’s probably the most adorable crazy cat lady I’ve ever seen. If I’d known this costume was an option in elementary school, I totally would’ve gone this route instead of dressing up as Cleopatra for three years straight. 

            4. Channel The Simpsons

            The crazy cat lady from The Simpsons has, for better or worse, become a kind of cultural icon (well, maybe just in my mind).

            Capturing her look for Halloween can be a lot of fun, as this photo proves.

            Or this one.

            On the flip side, you could always go as a sleek, attractive, well-groomed cat lady. So pretty much go as yourself, then.

            5. Or just dress as a cat

            Hey look, it’s Grumpy Cat and Lil Bub! Close enough, anyway.

            If you’re not feeling the crazy cat lady vibe, you could take the other obvious route and dress as a cat — even one of the Internet’s favorite celebrikitties. This step-by-step tutorial shows you exactly how to transform yourself into Grumpy Cat in time for the big day. Bonus: You don’t have to crack a smile while handing out candy to the kids who are beating down your door.

            Watch more cat videos:

            Learn more about your cat with Catster:

            About Angela: This not-crazy-at-all cat lady loves to lint-roll her favorite dress and go out dancing. She also frequents the gym, the vegan coffee joint, and the warm patch of sunlight on the living room floor. She enjoys a good cat rescue story about kindness and decency overcoming the odds, and she’s an enthusiastic recipient of headbutts and purrs from her two cats, Bubba Lee Kinsey and Phoenix.

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