Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Health Issues

Yesterday I did not clean up a particularly voluminous vomit of Rudy's right away, forgetting all about it, and guess it...slid on it in bare feet, adding my spilled coffee to the mess.  Still, it was an easy clean-up, and it served as a "wake-up" to take him to the vet.

I love my present vet...Dr. Dougie.  (Oh, they are all so young these days!)  It's just that I don't have the stamina to take on any more chronic health issues, though denying them doesn't work.  First of all, Rudy is feeling great, playing and eating as always.  It's just that I can see that his gums are somewhat inflamed, he has a nonproductive hacking cough and frequent projectile vomiting....but, not every day.

Rudy weighed in at 12 pounds!  It's the heaviest he has ever been! At least two, if not 3, pounds overweight.   The diagnosis:  Stomatitis (the dreaded word!)...a mild case...and asthma. Vomiting is possibly a food allergy or a "simple" matter of eating too fast.
He will be 6 next month, on Thanksgiving.....Much too young for such chronic issues. (Zippy was 15 when he got stomatitis) He is also much too fast and much too willful to be treated with an inhaler or with oral medication.  We settled with a steroid shot.  Now, to stay on top of this.....
So, now we are both taking steroids! :-(  Yuck! 

Monday, October 26, 2009

Growing Into a Princess

If only Sophie allowed me to touch her (I come close!), I could give her some princess lessons, but, instead, she has to learn by herself.  I can't imagine what her life must have been before she came to live with us! 

She has finally learned that I will never disturb her up on my bed.  And, yes, she is allowed on every piece of furniture which she tests out one by one.  With each piece she has tested out, she gets a look of panic and runs when she sees me.  Next, comes a period of watching me carefully....always on alert to make a run for it....until, finally, she believes it's truly o.k. to be there.  She now has claimed my bed, a bench, the couch in the T.V. room, the guest bed,  the chest in the livingroom....with another chair and livingroom couch to go. 
She has sat on the high bar counter in the kitchen and watched me cook.....but very furtively.  No other counters have been tried, and she received a firm No to the kitchen table. Even kitty princesses to not get that privelege, and, not even Santino!

Sophie has mastered turning up her nose at food, copying Rudy by scratching the floor all around it in a "must cover this up" motion.  She joins the boys when it's treat time, but refuses to beg like they do. Her Royal Highness in Training won't move more than a couple to inches to pick up her treat, while the boys will claim theirs from anywhere if I throw it in order to tire them out just a little before I go to bed.  Oh, Sophie CAN move, and she can move fast, but she reserves that for play with Santino.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Kitty Bonding

Before I left my brood of 4 for three days, Rudy never spent the night on my bed....always choosing to go off somewhere to sleep alone.  Princess Sophie would start the night out on my bed, but in the morning when I awakened, it was always just Santino and loyal, cuddly bed-cats. 

Now the four are sticking together!  All four on the bed for naps, all four there in the morning when I wake up, and even milling around in a group. Of course, I find this incredibly cute. :-) 

As with a lot of good things, there is a downside to this, but there's no point in worrying about the future which always does it's own "thing", and not what one anticipates.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Simply Wonderful!

Not only did I have a fabulous time, but my worries over leaving Santino were unnecessary!
He was no different on my return than if I'd only been gone a very short time....happy to see me, giving me lots of head butts, and wanting to be held and snuggled, all for a while, and then off on his own business.

Here is the note from the cat sitter who stayed here.  ( Here in Texas, it's rare to find someone who can even recognize a bonafide Siamese cat, and you can forget about distinguishing a Balinese from a Siamese. LOL)

"Santino is probably the most lovable cat I've ever met ( except for Blu) he was pretty snuggly too, like I said I never get to hug on Cats like that...a real treat for me. I always think the  next time I "need " a cat, I'll get a siamese like yours, but I always end up at the shelter taking the loneliest  cat I can find.....or picking one up from the street ( that's where most of my cats come from...they find me..."

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Leaving Baby

Here you see my Santino at 7 months,
below is Santino, Sr. as a kitten.  Going by these two photos, Jr. appears to have a more triangular face....not that it matters in the least to me.  Both are handsome boys.

Tomorrow morning I am going to Houston for 3 full days.  It will be the first time of leaving Santino.  I wanted to wait until he was at least a year old, but the International Quilt Festival calls.  Besides, I was going a bit stir-crazy. 

Oh, what will be think?  I hope he isn't too anxious.  I have a good cat sitter who will be sleeping here, and she will see to all of the cats physical needs, but she is very different from me.  I pad around the house quietly, the TV is seldom on, and I speak quietly.  I don't pick up my cats at will, and cuddle them when it suits their likes.  My sitter likes cats very much, but I would say she would be best friends with dogs, not cats.  But, she is good-hearted and I can count on her to be here as agreed on.   sigh....

Sophie doesn't come to me for hugs, so I'm not worried about her, and the older boys know the sitter well.  They both came within her grabbing distance when she came to get the key a couple of days ago.  Amazingly, Rudy did not go berserk when she picked him up! :-) 

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

He's Such an ANIMAL!

This is Rudy, my rude ruddy Abyssinian.  If Rudy were human he would definitely be on medication.

Until he was two, he seldom slept, always being in non-stop motion, most of that taking place several feet off the ground.  At five, he is much easier to live with, though of all my cats, he doesn't care much...if at all...whether I approve or not of his behavior.  When he is sharpening his claws on the furniture, a shouted "NO!" or a spray of water has not effect whatsoever.  I have even thrown a magazine at him, but unless it's a direct hit, he ignores it. So far, none of the solutions I've tried have worked. He is a very determined cat!

I believe he would have been happier as a shop cat, where he would have had constant social interaction and admiration which he craves.  But, that was not his fate, and mine was not to have pristine furnishings.

I've also learned to accept that there's no way to get him to stop inhaling his food whole and to keep him from vomiting it back in due time. It's part of our routine. I accept. I adjust. I am adaptable. 

And, then there's all the other, more gross stuff.  When he's in the litter box, he make the litter fly out the opening,   So far, no solutions have worked.. Every solution brings a different problem. He would drink only from running water, and since I feared his getting dehydrated, I would let him drink out of the bathroom faucet.  I solved that issue by getting him a fountain.  He no longer tries to drink from the stream of water when I am using it, but can't resist licking the faucet thoroughly after I have turned it off.  No harm done....unless one thinks about all the germs on the tap.  That very same tongue may have licked his butt only a minute ago. 

Rudy has a very wet tongue, drippy wet.  He likes to stand up in back of me when I'm seated and lick my neck. One lick calls for a towel!  Yesterday, I caught him licking my cloth napkin.  I couldn't help but wonder how many times he had done this without my catching him.....At night he nuzzles in my hair, and yes, licks it.  This morning I was awakened by his bathing my arm-pit.

All of it adds up to a dull undertone of annoyance which I ignore, but, of course, I know that these "little" annoyances in life all add up.  It's, it feels deal with it when the annoyances are so small and when one loves the person causing them, whether he wears fur or not.

Monday, October 5, 2009


My baby boy had his ten month birthday October, 2nd.  I gave him extra kisses and sang "Happy Birthday" to him, but...this b'day photo.  I have had plenty of mind never ceases to churn them out....but, have not been feeling energetic enough to put anything into action.

These are Santino's siblings and cousins, and baby Santino is somewhere in the happy pile. The photo was taken by Virginia Torch, the original Mama of all. (How I wish I could see how they have grown!  Are they as gorgeous as Santino?)

I have wanted to do another post about nature vs. nurture.....but, unfortunately...did not note my ideas.  I do think that whatever is generally said about cats does not hold true of the breeds.  They do not have independent natures, and, I believe, want very much to please us.  (Not Rudy!)  They are sensitive and get their feelings hurt easily.  I am hoping that Virginia will add a lot of her own observations to this.

Another subject in which I am very interested is why cats who are obsessive compulsive by nature are considered "normal", whereas obsessive compulsive behavior in humans is reason for therapy and/or medication.  What else are cats getting away with? :-)  Shouldn't we cut people just as much slack? Or, is the key element "nature"?  Humans are not obsessive compulsive by nature.