Monday, December 31, 2012

Thumbs up for Maxi Zoo.

Maxi Zoo’s own brand, Select Gold, used to have a small amount of grains in it but now they make their wet food completely grain and gluten free. On the tin they call it sensitive. I call it common sense. Every cat should be eating grain and gluten free food. For dry food, Applaws is still the best option. See my blog entry on cat food.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Tomcat behaviour or random?

Is it a typical tomcat thing I wonder? Charlie often plunks himself down in doorways. Tina never does that. Cato used to do it too. Cato also parked himself right behind you when you were doing something in the kitchen. Charlie does that as well. Maybe it is just a coincidence with Cato and Charlie doing the same thing.
If there’s anybody out there who’s experienced the same fondness for lying in doorways with their cats, be it male or female, I would like to hear from ye. I’m kinda curious to see if it is a tomcat thing or not.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Ear trouble.

Sunday evening, last week, we noticed that Tina’s right ear wasn’t fully upright. The tip was drooping. I checked her ear more closely and noticed it was a bit red looking compared to the other one. I gave it a good wipe with sensitive wipes for cats and dogs that have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties and the next day we took her to the vet. Orla went with her and told me that she had been very quiet and easy to handle. No bother at all. The travel box is out all the time and she uses it to sleep in as well, which helped to make her feel at ease. At the vet’s they couldn’t really see much and said that it could be caused by trauma through banging it while hunting or playing. There’s no visible damage other than the drooping and the redness. She’s on a course of antibiotics and an anti-inflammatory because it could be an infection. It is known that cats in a damp environment could get bacterial or yeast infections in their ears. It doesn’t seem to be itchy or painful. We have to keep an eye on her to see if there are any changes.
When she came back from the vet at around 6.30pm, she was hungry. I gave her food and medication as well and she didn’t seem to mind. She’s active and playful so at least it doesn’t seem to bother her. I hope her ear will straighten itself again, but if it doesn’t, we’ll love her all the same.

 Tina with her bent ear.

6 Months

Charlie and Tina are with us now 6 months and what a great 6 months it has been.
They’ve settled in so well. Tina had a small outbreak of ringworm, but the topical treatment worked. It disappeared and she never got the ringworm back.  The only slightly disturbing issue was that Charlie had to miss part of his tail but he’s fine without.
Charlie is the one who changed a lot physically. He was a very slim tomcat and Orla had already nicknamed him ferret, which I didn’t particularly like. He has now grown into a strong muscular tomcat and often catches huge rats and can be a bit rough in his play with Tina. Tina changed a lot in her behaviour. She started off as a nervous girl and ran almost every time when she would meet someone in the hall. She’s now a confident beautiful lady who cuddles up to us on her own terms and allows me to pick her up and hold her for a short while. When I have a lie-in with my book on days off, she often lies down under the covers under my legs for a while. She’s well able for Charlie and will let him know when she doesn’t like his behaviour. They get on fine.
Both like the cat trees, which have dens, platforms and hammocks. Tina took to the hammocks straight away. She often lies in one of them after a hunting session outside or a play session inside. Charlie lies in one of the dens regularly, but is getting more interested in the hammocks as well.
Both like playing but Tina loves it fast. She runs around the coffee table chasing the toy and up and down the cat trees as well.
They both have their way of communicating with Orla and I.
Charlie loves a bit of kibble every now and then and when he wants some, he goes to the door of the utility room and when I open it he stares up at where I keep the kibble.
He brings me to the fridge when he wants other food. He’s a very efficient communicator, but so is Tina.
Tina loves playing and sometimes, when she’s bored, drags a toy in to where one of us is so we’ll play with her. She also meows to let us know she’s finished in the litter box as if to say “ok, you can clean it now”.
They both have an array of meows that they use to communicate with us. Charlie greets with a short high stutter which sounds like “ek, ek”. Tina uses a high rolling sound that goes a bit like “mwrrrrrrr”. Both Tina and Charlie have a distinct longer meow that is the equivalent of the typical Limerick call “come here I want ya”.
When they want something they call us and then simply walk in front of us to show us what they want.
It humbles me to see how they fully seem to trust us and treat us as family, bringing gifts (rodents), grooming us and hang out with us.
They’ve changed the dynamics in our house, but in a positive way. Orla and I were happy together, but the cats add so much. They make us laugh, they help us chill and give us comfort. They’ve enriched our lives in many ways. Of course it comes at a price. We can’t just go somewhere without making sure they’re cared for. We will have to look at how we’re going to do it when going on a holiday. But sure, it’s well worth the hassle. We wouldn’t want to miss them for the world. We both love them to bits.