Thursday, June 30, 2011

That's a Wrap!



Nick wrapped around Penny makes a Penny wrap sandwich!



And that's also a wrap for us! We are taking our annual summer break from blogging and plan to be back in the fall.

We never rule out an occasional post and we'll visit when we get a chance. 

We hope you come by on occasion and check out some of our older posts. 

Have a wonderful summer (or winter depending upon your hemisphere)!

~Lisa Co9T

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Two Cat Tuesday - Cheek to Cheek





BJ (on the left) and Wizard (on the right) are sharing a coveted spot
 in front of the window on the back of the couch.



Back in the day when BJ was an indoor/outdoor kitty, 
Wizard would rush up to greet him when he first came in the house for the evening.
All he'd do is sniff him all over, probably getting a "scent" of where BJ had been in the great outdoors.
 BJ didn't seem to mind it.

BJ is our oldest kitty at 12 years old and Wizard is at least 8, although we don't know his exact age.

~Lisa Co9T

Monday, June 27, 2011

Mancat Monday - Mancat in Jail



Oh! No! Wizard got himself put in jail!!




Sometimes Wizard gets carried away when he fights with Nick. For some reason, dominance perhaps, Wizard will turn a play session into a nasty pursue and attack session that he will not back down from. It only happens with Nick. We usually have to squirt him with water to get him to disengage, but he'll continue to pursue and attack Nick. Ultimately only a "time-out" settles him down and changes his behavior. It happens maybe once or twice a month and always lands Wizard in jail! 

Lucky for Wizard, jail has many amenities and only lasts 10 or 15 minutes. Five minutes after I took this picture, Wizard started goofing off, turning upside down, making coo-meowing sounds and sticking his paws outside the bars. 

It worked. I let him out early for good behavior :).


~Lisa Co9T

Friday, June 24, 2011

A Snafu Friday

An Update on Snafu in June


But first, some fun photos of him playing with his newest favorite toy.


He loves to carry it about and keep it away from the other kitties.


Never a dull moment!



As of today, Snafu is not on any herbal remedies or pharmaceutical medications. If you are new here and need a historical reference of where we’ve been with Snafu and why you may want to read Mancats Can Wear Pink Thongs, Snafu - Extended, Situation Normal All F**ked Up, Homeopathy, and Snafu on the Offensive (otherwise know that he is cat aggressive, has fear/anxiety issues and is a territorial in-house peer). We did try Bach’s Rescue Remedy which at first made him more anxious, then we took him off the homeopathic album tincture and the Rescue Remedy seemed to work better. But…nothing we gave him seemed to make any consistent relative difference in his behavior and he still sprayed and attacked other cats. So, ultimately we decided to just monitor him when he is out of his room and only let him out when we can give him lots of attention.

In fact we have learned the best way to calm him is heat. A hot day (or in the winter, the woodstove) takes the aggression right out of him. Case in point - the other day when it was sunny and in the 80’s here, he and Penny actually tapped noses in passing. Taps instead of hisses and flat ears! Imagine that! Otherwise, on cool rainy days, he trys to beat the crap out of Angus, who insists on teasing him.

For the most part I keep his “trigger housemates” Penny, BJ and Angus in another room (if they are agreeable) when Snafu has his time out to run and play through the house. If he decides to curl up and take a nap, only then do I let the other kitties out, too.

Simply put, we are managing his behavior. At some point, we may try a different pharmaceutical when we have the money and perhaps reach a new tipping point because sometimes it is hard to see him so full of anxiety, but for now management (and heat) works best whether he is on or off medication.

By the way, the thong we had him wearing on occasion proved unhelpful when he had to go #2...which we could not predict. I only had to clean that up off him once to nix that accessory.

Thanks for reading this and thank you for your continued concern over our troubled boy. If anyone would like more specific or detailed information on what we've been doing and why, please email me at the Gmail address above. I know some of you have similar problems and are looking for answers too.

~Lisa Co9T

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Yukon's Secret Obsession


Yukon has a secret obsession...



He's a banana licker.

He also loves to chew on banana rinds.

What's your secret obsession?

~Lisa Co9T

Monday, June 20, 2011

Meditating Mancat Monday


Angus is listening in meditation 



and we think he looks quite handsome doing it...

~Lisa Co9T

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Garden Post?


I'm sure this morning you have seen some beautiful flowers and healthy plants in all the many gorgeous gardening posts around the CB.  

All we could conjure up is BJ showing us the world's tallest dandelion. 




DP must have missed this guy when she mowed inside the cat enclosure, so we had to take a picture of how tall it grew! It's hard to tell from this picture, but it is about 3 feet tall.

OK. You may resume your viewing of beautiful flower posts...thanks for stopping by.

~Lisa Co9T

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Two Cat Tuesday - A Lit'l Dis and a Lit'l Dat


"Fine!"
"May I PLEASE go in the house YOUR MAJESTY?"


"Hmmmm...I'll take it into consideration, and get back to you."


~Lisa Co9T

Monday, June 13, 2011

Monday Morning Hangover with a Mancat


Owen just had breakfast and now he's ready for an early morning nap. Who's game?


We hope you all had a good weekend!

~Lisa Co9T

Friday, June 10, 2011

Calico Girl

I love, I love, I love my calico girl! Yeah, yeah!

I have a hard time taking a good picture of Penny.
Her whites are so white, they glare up
 almost all the photos I take - flash or no flash.

But I'm going to go for it anyway this time.

Here is my calico girl showing some diva attitude!














~Lisa Co9T



Thursday, June 9, 2011

Gifts from Cats


Some skillful kitty left this gift 
in the middle of my bed!


Here is a close up of the poor thing.


I think it was Nick since I've seen him catch a dragonfly in mid-air before.


It wasn't quite dead so I put it back outside. 
Unfortunately, other kitties found it and finished it off.

~Lisa Co9T

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Monday, June 6, 2011

Mancat Monday with Yukon


Here is some cross-paw action DP caught from Yukon.



This is his lovey look. 

Watch out, he wants some serious petting!



Here he comes to get it!

~Lisa Co9T

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Yard Cats


This is what we did over the holiday weekend. 
Found some shade in the sun 
after days and days of rain in May.


Snafu is on his back (looking at me) between the two ramps,
Penny is on the deck with Nick below her, and 
Wizard is sitting on a new addition to the enclosure. 
It's a camp chair we got at a yard sale.
DP is a yard sailing aficionado.

~Lisa Co9T

Friday, May 27, 2011

A Snafu Friday

In this video is a pretty typical move of Snafu.


I try not to let it get very far, but lately I've
been wanting to capture his behavior on video.


Notice at the end how he sees that I'm watching him and he 
looks for his next move. That's when I stop and redirect
him...


and this is how I spend my time...redirecting Snafu.





If you'd like to read even more about Snafu and how he is doing.  Please visit my
other blog After Boom.

~Lisa Co9T

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Can I have some sun?


Yukon likes to share with dogs.


In this case Rex is sharing with Yukon,
although it looks like he'd like a little more sun.

What do you say, Rex?

Arf, arf!

~Lisa Co9T

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Trouble with Turbo Trac



Some kitties, just don't want to share!


Penny, Yukon, Owen are playing with the Turbo Trac with Snafu watching from the side (because Penny is there).


Can you guess who will be naughty and not want to share?







Ha! Did you guess right?


~Lisa Co9T

Friday, May 20, 2011

A Silly Series of Nick


Silly Nick is sound asleep. Until...




DP brings out the flashy box.

Luckily, it barely disrupts him.



He doesn't even open his eyes.



He just falls asleep again in a new silly position...

~Lisa Co9T



Thursday, May 19, 2011

Penny is Hunting

Can you see what Penny is hunting?


He is making a lot of noise, too!

~Lisa Co9T


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Two Cat Tuesday with the Gray Boys



Wizard and Snafu watch the birds and rodents through the screen door.


Can you guess who is who?

~Lisa Co9T

Friday, May 13, 2011

Snafu on the Offensive - redo

[This post is a "redo" because the original was a casualty of the Big Bad Blogger Day]


Since I wrote the original post off the cuff, which I don't do very often, I won't be able to reconstruct all the text.


I think I pointed out the following things about Snafu:


- Snafu is not always cuddly and sweet and here is the video to prove it. Although he is just teasing, it can turn ugly real fast.
- He seems to be improving a little bit on the homeopathic herbal remedy, but he still sprays.
- We want to remove all our carpets and install vinyl, linoleum or tile when we have money.
- We still love Snafu and live in his world...


The original post prompted wonderfully heartfelt comments from supporters that I still have in email form and will always cherish. I'm at least glad of the opportunity to thank you for them.

In presenting the video I'll explain that Snafu gets into a mood and looks for trouble. This time he found Penny sleeping soundly. This is why he has bells on. Sometimes the only way to stop him is with the water bottle and sometimes I can soak him, but he won't be deterred.





~Lisa Co9T

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Snafu on the Offensive



Snafu being a bad boy...









I usually show funny, adorable and sweet photos of Snafu and talk about how aggressive he is. 


While in this video he is more of a tease, it can turn mean very quickly, especially if Penny lashes out at him. 
That is why I have the spray bottle at hand. Sometimes I can soak him and he barely moves.


Notice how he was looking for trouble, found Penny asleep and made his move?


The herbal remedy still seems to be better than a drugged out Snafu. His anxiety has been notched down a couple pegs.


But...


We still have a major problem with him spraying. DP and I are talking seriously about ripping out the carpet (we just installed 2 years ago), but we can't do that until we have money to replace it with vinyl or tile flooring. We've decided no more cat trees with carpeting, only wooden ones.


It's Snafu's world and we live in it.


~Lisa Co9T

Wordless


~Lisa Co9T

Friday, May 6, 2011

A Snafu Friday


We are settling into a routine with Snafu. The herbal remedy seems mild and yet effective. He still grooms, is a little less aggressive and more playful. He loves to play hard while he is out of his room. He will at least settle down and lay beside me if I'm sitting still on the couch or he'll find a spot. He sleeps for a time, then plays again. He asks go back into his room for true quiet time.

We remain vigilant about his potential for spraying. I'm not sure I'm confident that issue has lessoned. We're watching him all the time.  

It's hard to believe we have 7 other cats. Snafu is like 8 cats in one.




Have a great weekend everyone!


~Lisa Co9T

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Thankful to be Totally Grain Free




We are very excited to be totally grain free now. If we had lots of money or less cats, I'd love to feed raw, but grain free seems to be the most practical and most healthy we can do for our guys.


We only feed them a wet meal in the evening. This picture shows a breakfast meal of (Taste of the Wild) kibble which is at 4:30 or 5:00 AM depending on when I get up...which depends on how much four legged walking I can handle on top of me!


The wet cat food of choice that everyone seems to love is BFF or Best Feline Friends. They all love four or five of the flavors they offer. My biggest fear was that finicky kitties wouldn't eat a particular flavor and others would get extra because of it, defeating our attempt at controlled portions. 


Yukon and Owen have both lost ounces and everyone's coat has glossed up nicely. Another benefit is the older kitties, BJ, Wizard and Nick seem to have a lot more energy and everyone is more playful!


Thank goodness they've taken to BFF!  


P.S. If you're wondering where Snafu is in the picture...he is in his room at this hour of the morning (he is still free fed and has kibble available to him all the time), but gets the wet food meal with everyone in the evening.


~Lisa Co9T

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Enjoying the Outdoors!





Finally! We are getting some dryer weather and all the kitties have been enjoying the outdoor enclosure.






If you'll notice that BJ is on the top rung of the ladder and Penny is on one of the side steps trying to get back into the house while Angus is on the platform on the ground. They have essentially surrounded Snafu who is sitting on the platform in front of the ladder looking at me...always looking at me.


To round out the gang, Yukon is on the platform with Angus and Nick is on the grass. They are watching a squirrel (aka The Red Tree Rodent).


.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Homeopathy

It works...


The herbal tincture we're now giving Snafu daily seems to be working for the most part. The day after I took this picture, he peed on the same spot. But it was likely my fault because I did not pick up his bed (to keep only his scent on it) like I should have. 

I saw BJ sitting on the bed earlier in the morning and I did think to spray the bed with catnip spray, but I guess that only works if no one else's scent is on it. I should have sprayed it with Zero which eliminates odors. 

Kari asked if Penny was his trigger - yes, but she is only one of his triggers. BJ and Angus are also antagonists and we try to keep up with all of them.

At least I have a level of hope for him now, but watching him back up and shake his tail at something can be discouraging. I just can't let anything go.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Hiding


A basket of stuffies and thee...


Penny!


A small update on Snafu. He's been off the Amitriptyline for over a week now. He zooms back and forth around the house, getting into trouble and will not settle down unless he's put back into his room. Spraying continues, fur flying fights still occur. I can't tell if the herbal remedy did anything for him at all. It was only a single dose. Anyway, we begin daily doses of the tincture today. Perhaps that'll do something.

~Lisa Co9T

Friday, April 22, 2011

O & Y



We have no shortage of Yukon and Owen pictures. 
Here they are on the top of our highest cat tree with laser eyes.


~Lisa Co9T

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Just 10 Minutes


Snafu off drugs takes 10 minutes to calm down when I get home from work. I think I can manage that. This time I brought a watch with me into Snafu’s room and the same scenario played out (except for the biting my ear part).

The herbal tincture was accidentally given to Snafu two days in a row, but it’s very hard to tell if it’s making any difference in his behavior. He may be a bit less aggressive, but that could be because he can think straight. He had two altercations with Penny but if we catch it in time, it can be averted…so he could have had more except that we saw it coming and said something before any action or contact was made. Sometimes it only takes a few words, other times it requires physical removal and as much as a time-out (which is a brief return to his room).

I plan to call the vet to give her an update today and see where to go from here, herbally.

~Lisa Co9T

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Snafu Off Meds

When I came home from work last night, I went into Snafu’s room (DP leaves for work about an hour before I get home) and spent time playing with him. He was at that extreme level of stimulation where he’s purring loudly and rubbing on everything frantically to the point where he could get hurt, depending on what he rubs on (dogs for instance or objects that could fall on top of him). Since we were in his room, he was relatively safe.  

He is three whole days off the Amitriptyline, and in his over stimulated state, it was hard to keep his attention on the toys and other flying objects I wanted to engage him with. Maybe three or four minutes had passed and he stopped going after the toys, but kept kneading and head butting things, so I sat down on his couch. He marched back and forth, jump up on the couch and then off, went to the door (which is a screen door), where Penny was sitting on the opposite side, and rubbed all over it, the door frame and wall. He did not spray anything, though at one point he stopped in front of Penny at the door. I could see he was getting himself worked up…which is this strange little huffing sound he does, so I called to him. He immediately broke out of it and came back to me on the couch.

One thing I have noticed off the Amitriptyline is his responsiveness is better. It seems his mind is clearer, even though it may be agitated. On the couch he rubbed all over me. I had my hands tucked inside my sweatshirt because I knew I could easily get a very excited love bite even though at this point since arriving home I had not petted him at all. Unfortunately my ears were vulnerable and when he jumped up onto the back of the couch rubbing behind me, he crunched my ear. Yeow! Thankfully, he did not puncture me or draw blood which he has done in the past. I put the hood of my hoodie into good use after that.

I will time this out next time, but I’d guess it was 15 minutes or so before he totally flopped on the floor, still purring. He got up a couple of times, but kept laying back down. Another minute or two later after he flopped, I picked him up and air lifted over Penny and the rest of the cats waiting in the hallway outside his door, and brought him into the kitchen. He just lay on the floor and watched me (which is what he used to do while on Amitriptyline) while I did a few chores, then I lit the woodstove and gave the kitties their dinner.

This will be the new regimen: One on one play/attention, food, warmth.  DP gave him his one dose of the herbal tincture today. I’m not quite sure what to look for, but it may take a day or so.

~Lisa Co9T

Monday, April 18, 2011

Miss Penny




At one point during our long conversation about Snafu's anxiety problems with Dr Herman, our new homeopathic vet, she stops and says, "So, let's talk about Miss Penny." 




"What color is she," she asks?




I can't imagine what she is getting at, can you?

~Lisa Co9T

P.S. We plan to give Snafu his test dose of new homeopathic herbs today. He has been a pee wielding wildcat.



Saturday, April 16, 2011

Situation Normal All F**ked Up (S.N.A.F.U)


Here is an update on Snafu's visit to Dr Judy Herman. I posted it on my human blog HERE.

I'll be back to regular cat blogging sometime next week.

Thank you for your support!!!

~Lisa Co9T

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Snafu - Extended





A couple commenters from yesterday's post brought up some interesting points about Snafu's situation. 


Kari asked about Snafu's neutering and I thought this was an excellent point. As a matter of fact we had Snafu's neutering job checked specifically for the possibility of cryptorchidism because Nick had this condition when he was a juvenile. Snafu was neutered at a young age at our local humane society where most of our crew is from (Penny, Angus, Yukon, Snafu and Owen), and we knew some unfortunate stories about their staff vet. Alas, he checked out fine. No leftover manparts making him crazy. It was at this point we started him on Amitriptyline (last October).


#1 brought up Rescue Remedy and we actually have not tried this. We expect this homeopathic vet will put him on this first. We were going to do it on our own, but we wanted to consult a veterinarian who works with it. 


I want to stop the Amitriptyline because, other than our concern for the long term effects, it doesn't stop his unwanted behavior anymore.  So we wonder if it's Spring smells triggering this bad bout or if he's just adjusted to medication...and would this happen to every med we try. I need to review everything with a professional who will look at his whole situation - physiological and environmental so that I can feel confident I'm doing everything else right.


Connie brought up the idea of an animal communicator. This does intrigue me, but I have no idea what to expect. DP and I came across, not one, but two animal communicators just this past weekend at a local "Holistic and Mystic Fair." If you read my human blog, you'll know that we found it very disturbing to see them BOTH eating meat - ham even! It just doesn't make sense to me that a person who claims the ability to communicate with animals would eat them.


I'd love to know if anyone of you have had experience with an animal communicator and what you gained from it? What were they like and how did they...do their thing? I'd like to hear about what others have learned before we hire someone to tell us that Snafu is very unhappy, would rather I stay home from work to be with him and not have the other cats around. He's already told me this in so many stinking ways!


Thanks for your advice and continued purrs!


~Lisa Co9T