Monday, June 9, 2008

Letters from Margo and Silvia

Dear Future Family,

I'm just dying to see you. I'm so bored and tired of being cooped up at the ARL. My needs are simple: fresh water, dry food, clean litter, and a warm petting once in a while. I don't force myself on people. I'm a little reserved at first, but I warm up quickly. I enjoy the company of other cats. My friend Silvia and I got on just fine. Come see me today.



Dear Future Family,

I hope to meet you soon. I'm a shy girl, but I warm up quickly. I will soak up all your extra pettings. I'm lonely now that Margo left - I enjoy feline company. I'm not a picky eater, I don't eat much at all in this warm weather - just some dry kibble and fresh, cool water for me. I'm still in foster care until I stop sneezing, but I'm healthy enough to be adopted now. Please come see me soon.



Coming and Goings

Margo is all better now. I took her to the ARL yesterday, and picked up a case of kittens. I have 6 now - the two brown tabbies from earlier, and 4 of various colors. Silvia is still here due to her persistent sneezing. She's well enough to go to a home, but I couldn't risk her getting the other ARL cats sick.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Getting Better

They're getting better - both pairs. The cats upstairs are sneezing and sniffling less. They're also hiding less. The torti - I'm calling her Margo - is pretty friendly. She comes right up to me to get her lovings when I enter the room. The grey and white kitty, Silvia, wasn't even hiding this morning. She was sitting on the chair in plain view, and she came over to compete with Margo for the petting.

The kittens are also showing progress, especially the smaller one (on the right in the picture). It started out just letting me pet it while it ate. Then it stopped hissing while I pet it and started purring. Now it even pushes into my hand when I scratch behind its ears. The other kitten still hisses and spits if I get too close. I'm going to have use its sibling to lure it to me. I'll be patient. I'll have them for 3 more weeks before they'll be old enough for surgery.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Lucky Number 7

I'd like to introduce you to my latest house guests - Litter 7. These two 5-week-old cuties are semi-feral. It's a strange relationship. They hid when we first got them; now they watch us out in the open, and they meow to let us know when they're out of food - they're eating like crazy, a full 5.5oz can per day. But they're afraid of physical contact. At least they're healthy and playful.

I also have two sick adults in the cat room, both female. One is a white, brown and black torti. She's a little shy at first, but warms up quickly and appreciates a nice petting. The other girl is grey and white. She's very shy and spends most of her time hiding behind the cushion. However, she also enjoys a good pet, and her mood may improve once she's feeling better. I'm not taking any pictures of them until their noses heal up - they're licked raw from the URI.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Ray Ray to some, Aslan to Others, Adorable to All

Ray Ray/Aslan has gone to the ARL and is eager to go to his new home. To Ray Ray's future family:

Ray Ray isn't the kind of cat you get and forget. He'll be in your face, purring and snuggling, chasing anything that moves, so be ready to give him some affection. If you don't have the time to play and cuddle with him, please consider adopting two cats. They will entertain each other, and they'll be great fun to watch. Ray Ray doesn't need fancy treats or expensive toys. He prefers dry kibble, fresh water, and plastic pom poms that sell for less than a dollar.
Please leave me a comment if you want to know anything more about Ray Ray/Aslan.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Liger Pics

Aslan's cold is mild but persistent. We'll have him for a few more days.
He couldn't decide whether to attack my slipper or itch his ear.

Those stairs never saw what hit them.

Now in possession of the Metaloid Pom, Aslan zaps me with his eye lasers.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Aslan's a riot. He's gotten over his eye infection, but his cold is still hanging on, so we've got him for a few more days. Like most cats, he loves those plastic pom pom things. Unlike most cats, he plays fetch with them. He and I have worked it out so that I toss a pom pom down the stairs, and he runs after it. He plays with it a little bit, then tears back up the the stairs carrying the pom pom in his mouth. He brings it over to me, or more accurately, the spot on the landing near his room where he's figured out the game restarts, and I toss or kick the pom pom back down the stairs. It's great because he gets a lot of exercise with minimal effort on my part. And it's so cute! He thinks he's a retriever! Tee hee hee!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Introducing Aslan the 6th (Litter)

For reasons too messy to get into now (ever) I had to exchange Litter 5 for something that used the litterbox. I ended up with a miniature liger - that's right, half lion, half tiger, all 4 month old kitten that just loves to be petted and played with. He had URI, but he's mostly over that now and just dealing with a minor eye infection. He should be back at the shelter and ready for adoption within 7 days. He's called "Ray Ray" there, but we call him Aslan due to certain physical resemblances. He's rather hard to photograph because he tends to be on me or whipping around the room whenever I'm in there. Anyway, I managed a few close ups.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Ah! Ah! Ah! Ah! Litter 5! Litter 5!

The ARL has been absolutely swamped with kittens, so I took home four of them on Saturday. They're supposed to all be from the same litter, but one of them looks a week older than the rest. They're three weeks old. They weren't eating the soft food the shelter sent home with me, so we went out and bought a can of milk replacer. Expensive stuff!

Since they're so young, I'm not sure what their genders are. There's a calico one,
a grey tabby, and two white and grey kittens. The tabby is the older one. It's less social; it hisses sometimes when we try to pick it up. Maybe its genetic family was more feral then its adoptive litter.

Since they're so young, I wasn't confident in their litter habits, so I've been penning them up on when I'm not in the room. They seem to be doing pretty well so far, but I'll be happier to let them run about the room unsupervised in another week.

They sleep, eat, and beat the heck out of each other. That's their routine. They also love to climb the cushions and bite... well... just about everything. Including my hand! I'm hoping they grow out of that soon. They're clumsy little things, too falling off the cushions, accidentally stepping in their food or in the water dish. "Lil' Wet Foot," I should call the calico. At least she's making a habit of licking her feet.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Immortalized in Pixels

It was with great shock and dismay that I learned today that Cara Mel did not survive her spaying procedure. Having grown up with spayed cats and known many people with spayed cats, I had never known of a single case in which there were complications, let alone a spaying operation that turned fatal. One of the reasons I chose not to adopt my foster cats was because I didn't want to watch them grow old and die. Now this.

Cara Mel is actually the second of my fosters to die. The first was in my first litter. There were originally six kittens, and one died shortly after I took them home. The kitten was apparently very sick when I got her. The shelter clinic was closed, so I could either take her to an emergency vet who would have little chance of saving her, or try to make her comfortable until the clinic opened or she died. Watching that kitten die was the saddest thing that I had ever done. Yes, I have been more depressed before, more miserable, but never from a single act.

Cara Mel and her kittens were my longest fosters. I took great pleasure from watching her interact with her kittens and the rest of the house. She was very inquisitive, she seemed to want to know everything that was going on, but she never stopped watching out for her kittens. She was a good mother and a good cat. Cara Mel will be missed.

Monday, April 21, 2008

A Letter from Cara Mel

To my future family,

Please adopt me soon. I'm such a sweety I know we'll get along just fine. I enjoy company. I'll follow you around the house and watch everything you do, but I don't jump up on things (much) and I don't beg at the table, (just watch). I'm a little confused about where my kittens have gone. (Adopt one with me! I'll take care of him/her and we'll keep each other company.) To get over my loss, I might pretend that your dirty socks are my kittens. I'll talk to them and carry them around with me so that I know they're safe.

I loved to use this scratcher in my foster home. Please get me one like it. I'm a bit of a litter flinger, but I'm better with litter pellets like these. Also, I love these salmon treats, but I'm not too picky!

Adopt me and I will love you forever... and sort your socks!

Purrs and Snuggles,

Cara Mel

A note to my regular readers: Cara Mel has been listed on PetFinder, and her profile links to Kitty Fest. We don't list the kittens because they'll be adopted from the shelter quickly and without the need of internet publicity.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

As with All Good Things...

I've given Cara free range of the house while keeping the kittens in the laundry room. I tried putting them in the kitchen, but I got tired of moving all their stuff, and the kittens seem more comfortable in the room in which they spent most of their lives. Cara's been kind of funny about the change. She'll walk around the house calling to them, as if she's forgotten that they can't get out of the laundry room. She has also taken to carrying around my dirty socks while making what sounds like the I have a prize for you sound. For the last time: my socks neither smell nor taste like dead rats.

Cara's been uber curious about everything, looking in the garbage even when there's no food in it, looking out the window, just looking around. I made vegetable fried rice last night, and I tried soy bean pods for the first time. The pods were too tough to eat, so we were throwing them away, and Cara kept snatching the pods out of the trash to eat them. Weirdo.

Cara Mel and her kitties are going back to the shelter Monday to be fixed and put up for adoption. I'm going to miss them. Cara's been extremely fun to take care of. If it weren't for K's allergies, I think I'd keep Cara Mel and Absinth (the kitten formerly known as Pernod).

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Trying out the New Camera

We decided to rename "Godiva" as "Caroline," but this is not meant to imply that she is in any way inferior to Bailey. Bailey likes my camera. Pernod Absinth thinks it's pretty cool. Caroline is a little more interested in other things... ... like wrestling her brother. Bailey watches Caroline beat up a towel... ... and then decides to take on a shirt. The shirt wins. Here's Pernod Absinth taking on a somewhat livelier opponent. Cara loves her babies, but they can be exhausting.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Grainy Footage

K was nice enough to hold the laptop while I snapped some pictures with the webcam. Unlike my Fab Five photos, these images look on par with the photographic evidence of Bigfoot. Kudos to anyone who spots a flying saucer. The webcam is good for still life, and these kittens are only still when they're sleeping.Here's Pernod Absinth scratching his ear. I promise he doesn't have fleas. I've never seen a cat with quite that coloring, like a charcoal tabby. My dad was quite taken with Pernod Absinth (who's name he supplied).This is Bailey at the heel of K's slipper. What a cutie! When compared to Godiva Caroline, he's got a little more brown on his face and a little less white on his forehead. In Exhibit A, you can clearly see the plaintiff, Ms. Cara Mel, having her tail assaulted by one of the defendants - Lord Bailey and Lady Godiva Caroline. This is the only photographic evidence that we have of the attack, so it will be up to their testimony to determine the guilty party. Unfortunately, all three parties are refusing to talk.I think that's Godiva Caroline under Pernod Absinth.Pernod Absinth and Bailey are in the foreground, Cara and Godiva Caroline against the wall.

In a final note, I did break down and buy a camera from I expect its arrival by the end of the week.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Mmm... Intoxicating

I wish I had more pictures. I would, but I broke my camera/phone shortly after I took that last batch. Also, I've been working obsessively over the last two weeks to create a presentable tutoring website. (I taught myself enough html and css to make a website that was none too shabby, and then I found out that google pages hates outside formatting. I had to micromanage every single tag to get it to come out the way I wanted, and I still can't change the website's background color.)

Anyway, Cara Mel and her kittens are all healthy. When the kittens opened their eyes two weeks ago, their eyes were solid black. A few days ago I noticed some color in there - their eyes are turning blue, and yesterday I had the vet tech sex the kittens for me when I had them in for their shots.
  • Bailey - brown-grey tabby and white, male: Bailey likes sleeping, nursing, and chewing on his sister.

  • "Lady" Godiva Caroline - brown-grey tabby and white, female: Godiva Caroline likes sleeping, nursing, and chewing on Bailey.

  • Pernod Absinth - charcoal, male(?): Pernod Absinth is either the adventurous one or the mama's boy. He was the first to go out of the sleeping den and walk around on his wobbly legs, and comes over to check me out when Cara Mel is soaking up the luvin'.
Maybe I'll steel Kyle's phone to get some pictures this weekend... or maybe I'll break down and buy a camera.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Fuzzy Butts

Cara loves being pet and scratched on the head. She's all purrs whenever I come in. She's still eating and drinking well, though she hasn't used the litter box in over 24 hours, so I'm a little worried there. I didn't smell anything in the closet, so I don't think she snuck in there. In fact, I had to move her food and water dish in order to compensate for the zeal with which she buries her refuse. She was throwing litter all over the place.

While Cara was eating her breakfast, I moved the carrier into the light so I could get a few pictures of her babies. Here they are at one week old. So far, my involvement with the kittens has been little more than making sure that all three are alive each time I feed Cara. I haven't thought much about names yet. I'll probably wait until they've had their two-week check-up so the vet tech can tell me their sexes.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Pretty Mama

Cara Mel is growing accustomed to her new home. She hasn't hissed at me since that night I stole the roll of toilet paper from her.
I re-arranged the layout of Cara's suite to give her more privacy and to give me easier access to the litter box.

Kyle's new phone takes better pictures than our old Samsungs, but I still may break down and buy a camera. Cara isn't like those celebrities who flaunt their babies around for the press, so if I want some good pictures before they're old enough to walk, I'm going to need a flash. On the other hand, Cara doesn't mind flaunting herself for the camera, not even while she's nursing.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Congradulate me: I'm a Grandmother.

I went to the ARL cat fosters meeting on Saturday, and I came home with a mother and three new-born babies that had just been dropped off. I'm calling the mom "Cara Mel." She and the kittens are set up in our spare bedroom, which we have mostly been using as a linen closet. It's well heated and private, and there's no furniture for Cara to get into, just a pile of cushions with our towels on top.

Cara's family had Saturday night to themselves to get used to their new surroundings. Then, Sunday morning, I went in to feed Cara, and she came right over, purring and butting her head into my hands. She has a good appetite; she's drinking lots of water, and she's using the litter box. Then, last night, I had to get a roll of toilet paper out of her room, and she had a hissy fit. Thing were back to normal this morning when I went in to feed her, so I'm not too worried. I just chalked it up to the mysterious feline psyche and maternal zeal.

I'll be posting pictures as soon, possibly daily updates. It's been a long time since I had the pleasure of fostering, and I was all grins yesterday just thinking about our new family.