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Just thought I’d pass on this warning. Seems there’s something like this every month or two *sigh*

At this point, I no longer buy made-in-China cat and dog treats. My favorite (NOT) thing is when I look at a package of treats to see where they were made, and there’s no information about where they were made at ALL. When that happens, I just assume that they were made in China and don’t buy them.


I don’t see the Melfistache. You mean she has a bit of the kitler look because of the black nose?

No, it’s a very thin line right above her upper lip, kind of a pencil ‘stache. Here’s a closeup with some arrows pointing to it.

Also, speaking of kitlers, please admire my favorite mustachio’d foster (Flossie, from the very first litter).



I’m wondering if you’re friends with Oliver Donovan and Em Mette on Facebook. They’re so darn cute, and I think you would like the way they talk. Just something you might look up. 🙂

I am friends with them on Facebook and I also follow the official Oliver Donovan FB page. They don’t post often enough to suit me, but when they do, I love it!


I have followed your posts for several years, but kept quiet. I have a question, though. I have an elderly cat (~18 yo) who is slowly having issues. I tried giving him Liqui-Tinic, but the biggest response was from his younger brother who liked to lick the dribble off of his chin. Since Marlowe (Phillip Marlowe, that is, he was quite a detective in his youth; his bio brother (RIP) was Sam Spade) is anemic, I moved on to trying liver. However, the liver was not a hit (both cats love to eat something I eat, but since I don’t eat liver…) Any tips on getting liver to appeal to cats?

I don’t have any suggestions here (well – maybe try mixing it with chicken baby food?), but hopefully someone out there will have suggestions for you! By the way, those are great kitty names. 🙂


Is Newt as wide as he appears in that picture? Wow! lol

Newt is a big boy – though I should add that he looks a lot less wide when he’s up and walking around. When he settles down into meatloaf position, he kind of… spreads out! No one tell him I’ve been posting unflattering pictures of him on the internet, please.


Okay, I am probably late to this idea but Tony with the stripes …did you purposely name him that in reference to Tony Soprano and Tony the Tiger?

I’ve had several people ask if his name was Tony because of Tony the Tiger, but once I had the list of names, I assigned them completely randomly. He certainly does have some delightful tiger-like stripes, doesn’t he?


Totally off-topic, but I’ve said before – you guys are the only cat people I “know.” Anybody found a reliable programmable feeder that your cat can’t break into? Earl busted into a flip-top feeder in minutes and probably wouldn’t take long to learn how to rotate the dish in the round feeders. This is also for Pumpkin, the weirdo twice-spayed orange female who goes into heat. Thanks!

I know nothin’ about automatic feeders; anyone out there have a good suggestion? Please share!


What slays me is, I have hardwood floors (oak), ONE (short-haired) Greyhound dog, ONE Siamese cat and I ALWAYS have pet hair on the floor. I don’t see one pet hair on the floor in that picture. I vacuum, damp mop, Bona, steam clean, EVERYTHING and there is always pet hair on the floor. There is also always pet hair on the tile floor in the bathroom and they don’t even USE the bathroom. What is your secret??

My secret is that I am SURE just off-camera in about 99% of the pictures I post, there’s more than likely a cat-fur dust bunny the size of Wisconsin. They tend to migrate to the corners of the rooms (and under furniture), so it might LOOK like my house is spotless, but believe you me, nothing could be further from the truth!


My little ragamuffin is 8 weeks now and still catching up on his growth – he loves his wet food but appears not to know how to eat kibble or drink water. Do I need to do anything about this or will he figure it out? Put a teaspoonful of KMR in his water dish?

I wouldn’t be too worried about him not drinking water – as long as it’s available to him, he’ll figure it out eventually. He’s getting the water he needs from the canned food. You can try sprinkling the dry food over the canned food, that might get him interested in the kibble.


What I want to know is what is that tray thing you have the litterbox (picture with Mz Poo) sitting on and where did you get it????

That is a jumbo boot tray with Dri-Dek tiles sitting inside it. I use the jumbo boot trays (which I got from Gardeners.com, here’s the link to them) for the litter boxes in the front room, the upstairs bathroom, and in the foster room. It helps to contain some of the litter. I only have the Dri-Dek tiles in the one boot tray, because I was trying them out. The litter is supposed to fall through the holes rather than get scattered on the floor, but it doesn’t really do that, unfortunately. I got the Dri-Dek tiles (which are a softish plastic, and which you can trim to fit the space you want to put them in) at Jeffers, but I’ve also seen them at Revival Animal – you may be able to find them even cheaper elsewhere; I just got them from Jeffers because I saw them in the catalog and thought they’d be worth a try.


Do you have any over-kneaders in your adult cats? Both of our boys knead like crazy. Two different breeds, ages, and upbringings. Just wondered. Peanut likes to knead people, and Zombie goes crazy on our bed. Oh, and Peanut drools like crazy when getting ear scratches. Then he shakes his head like a wet dog, and sprays me with cat spit. Gah. Every male in this house is annoying like that!

Tommy will knead and knead and knead some more. I call it his “long march to nowhere.” His preferred kneading position is a half-sitting position, and he prefers to knead on a soft pillow or blanket, with the occasional knead on an exposed arm or leg, usually when you’re not expecting it, and when it’s been a long time since his claws were last trimmed, for maximum pain. He is SO HAPPY when he’s sitting there kneading that his eyes go completely blank. I have a picture somewhere of Tommy kneading and Alice giving him the DIRTIEST look like she thinks he’s lost his mind. He’s the only power kneader in the house, though, which is kind of surprising given the number of cats we’ve got, isn’t it?


I thought of all your Momma cats when I saw this picture.

The Mommas are all singing “Calgon take me away !!”

Poor Momma kitties – they certainly put up with a lot, don’t they?


Every single time I read Paulie Walnuts it comes out “Paulie Wallies” and then “Wallie Peanuts” (which I recall someone else saying before.) There has never been a single time I’ve read it properly the first or second time. My brain must move too fast over the words. You’d think by now I’d have it!

Hey, you’d think I would have it by now. I keep calling him “Paulie Peanuts!”


Btw Chewy.com has a litter sale going on. I have no idea what is a ‘good price’ on some of the products but I know I’ve heard some of ’em mentioned here. I know they have some of the best food prices.


Yes, they have the Dr. Elsey’s Precious Cat 40lb bags for $11.24! Free shipping over $49. I had already ordered food, then noticed the litter sale after I hit checkout. Called them up, and they kindly added the litter to my order. This will be my first time with Precious Cat, and I’m hoping it lives up to the good recommendations. Have always gone with ScoopAway, because while it’s as dusty as Kansas in the 1930’s, it is the best for not having urine stink. I now don’t live near a PetSmart, which is where I would get the 42lb bags (the 35lb boxes drive me crazy–two boxes in another box, and you can hear all that litter shaking between the cardboard layers when it’s empty). Costco was carrying it, and just stopped (a month after I joined Costco, thanks Costco…). I tried Costco’s house brand. Super cheap, and way dustier than ScoopAway, which I didn’t think was possible. I’ll never buy it again. Just picking up a clump sent clouds of dust wafting everywhere.

The Costco brand sounds like the Fresh Step litter that Sam’s Club carries now. It’s crazy, the amount of dust that litter puts out, isn’t it?

I hope the Precious Cat works for you! I’ve been using it for a few weeks now (was using Cat Attract before that, but WOW that stuff is expensive) and it seems to be going pretty well. I added activated charcoal to all the litter boxes, but someone mentioned that they add a little Fresh Step to their litter boxes full of Precious Cat, and the Fresh Step helps with the odor control. I may go to that, because while the activated charcoal does a good job, it tends to turn white paws dark, so the white-pawed cats and kittens walk around looking like they have FEEELTHY paws, when it’s actually just the dust from the charcoal.

At one point in the past, maybe last year, I actually was using Fresh Step as a “booster” for Precious Cat already, and I have zero idea why I stopped doing that. I think I switched back to Fresh Step for some reason?

Also, I really like Chewy.com. I get my cat food from there on a regular delivery schedule, and I’ve been ordering my litter from there, too. The delivery guy knows that the heavy boxes are litter, and will put them by the garage for me (I put the litter into old Fresh Step buckets. That makes it easier to stack them for storage, and also to carry from the garage to the house.)


Adriana and the hook…it always amazed me what my kittens could find that horrified me when I thought about the potential consequences! Of course nothing topped when either Sabrina or Samantha (can’t remember who now) got her head trapped between the posts on bed’s headboard. Thankfully I was home and heard her terrified yowls, not to mention her mom Tabatha’s, and got there before she hung herself!! After that, I had pillows stuck between every post on that bed…Actually, I think I finally removed the last small pillow just recently – almost a year and a half after the fact!

Kittens really have a skill for finding the things you’d never EVER imagine to be a threat, don’t they? I swear, one day they’re going to scare me right into a heart attack!


Inspector Silvio examines the night light to make sure it’s up to code. I wonder if he accepts bribes?

Meadow heads up the small cat tree.


Oh, Tony. You make me want to kiss your little face all day long.

Mama Livia, on cleaning duty. But then, she can’t help herself…

She huffs that kitten belly.

“I can’t help it! I love to huff the belly! It makes me so happy, it CAN’T be wrong!”

“My name is Livia, I’m a kitten-belly-huffer, and I’m not ashamed to admit it!”

“The backs of their necks are pretty huffable, too.”

Snack time for the Sopranos. Livia, Tony, Adriana, and Carmela are usually the first to show up.

Then come Tony and Silvio.

And finally Meadow and Melfi mosey up to grab a few bites.


Oh, Corbie. You are so…

What’s the word?



2012: Myrtle Beach Thursday.
2011: No entry.
2010: “I’m da baybee.”
2008: No entry.
2007: I’m sure it’s eyeball cancer and we’ll have to put a pirate patch on him and it will cost one million dollars to cure him.
2006: No entry.
2005: The quintessential Crazy Eyes.



10-25-13 — 16 Comments

  1. Oh Livia, we are not judging you at ALL for kitten huffing! We’ve all been there and done that…and are secretly jealous that we can’t huff your babies too!

    The pencil muzzie (as they are known here in Liverpool) is just adorable! 🙂

    Corbie, my darling, you are so gorgeous. I think it is physically impossible to think otherwise!

  2. Oh those kittens! Just the perfect thing for Friday morning 🙂

    And a tale of caution, since there was a note about kittens getting stuck…a friend of mine used to hang her bras to dry on the knob of the bathroom door. One of her cats got playing with them and hooked a strap around her neck, and if my friend hadn’t found her, she might have died. As it was, she very nearly hung herself. (shudder) I’ve since stopped hanging my bras to dry anywhere that the cats can get at them.

  3. For the programmable feeders question, I use the Petmate LeBistro. I bought my first one about 4 years ago, and my cat Quinn learned how to reach up into it and pull out food pretty quickly. That was okay, though, because it just meant that she got less when the food was actually dispensed, so she wasn’t eating any more than the portions I allotted for her. The motor recently died, so I ordered the same one again, but they must have updated the model, because now there’s no way for Quinn to reach up into the feeder – there’s a hard piece of plastic that opens only when it’s time for food to dispense. I have to admit, it was pretty cute when Quinn reached up into her old feeder and pulled out 1 or 2 kibbles at a time, and I kind of miss it. But this newer model is definitely a better design.

  4. Carmela getting in a little “taste test” of your hand is cracking me up! And the Corbs is beeeeeautiful as usual. Flossie had a bit of a Nosferatu thing going on in that pic, which seems appropriate for the Halloween season!

  5. I have this automatic feeder for my two (yes, only two!) cats: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004SBSNB0/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B004SBSNB0&linkCode=as2&tag=handbyjuli-20 (that’s an affiliate link, btw). My cats have not been able to knock it over – it has a pretty sturdy base and it’s heavy with food in it. There is some discussion in the Amazon reviews of cats being able to stick a paw up in the feeder and get food to come out, but my cats either haven’t thought of that yet (in more than a year) or haven’t been successful. My only problems with this thing are that it goes through the batteries pretty quick and that it’s kinda loud when it goes off. My cats hear it and come running, lol!

  6. Robyn, I owe you a huge thanks for mentioning Chewy.com here in the not-too-distant past. I hadn’t heard of them before and now glad that I have. Haven’t gotten to the regular shipments yet, but have been so pleased when I have ordered. Got a postcard in the mail from them out of the blue, too!

    EverClean litter is advertised with charcoal in it. How is it for clumping/dustiness, if anyone has tried it, that is? I had wondered if cats would get gray feet from adding it to the litter, and you answered that one today.
    Thanks, as always!

  7. for the owner of the little raggamuffin:

    cats are desert creatures and as such have a very low thirst drive. They were designed (or evolved depending on how you look at life) to get all of their hydration from the food they were able to hunt and kill.. which is yet another reason they are obligate carnivores.

    most kittens who are not introduced to kibble at their mother’s side have no idea that kibble is actually food. I’ve had several sets of kittens try to use it as litter. Kibble is not an ideal food for any cat and many believe it to be linked to several diseases later on in life such as kidney issues, diabetes and most certainly obesity. There also seems to be a direct correlation between cats on dry food and urinary crystals.. so if you can avoid feeding dry food, it would seem to give a cat an advantage health wise (see catinfo.org and feline-nutrition.org for more info on that end of it)

    long comment to say, that canned food is generally the right ratio of food to water for cats and a lot of cats on a wet food only or raw diet have very little need for additional water. (although remember, being desert creatures, cats also tend to have an aversion to still water and are more likely to drink from a water fountain.. )

  8. Robyn-have any of your ‘kneaders’ ever gotten frisky when kneading? My youngest likes to knead on soft blankets and stuffed animals. A friend pointed out his jerky behaviour whilst kneading and we realized he was aroused. It really grossed me out.

    Also-have any of your cats ever suffered feline acne? It’s at the black head stage-not tons of it, maybe one or 2 at a time but I can’t seem to get it to stop. I use glass bowls and give them a fresh, clean bowl every meal (they are on a wet food diet) He’s also an indoor cat, and his brother doesn’t have any acne. It’s frustrating trying to figure it out.

  9. Loved today’s post as usual, especially the reminder of how beautiful Corbie is. But I can’t help myself, and must point out that in the ‘family snack’ pics you left out poor Paulie Walnuts. Thought you might want to know & maybe give him an extra snuggle to make up for it.

  10. Robyn you have no idea how much I love your blog…have for years…and now my elderly father looks forward to it every day too…right now he’s in the hospital, getting strong enough to return to nursing home…he delights in seeing me pull out the Kindle…cat and kittens! especially the kittens…

    At 90 he is declining rapidly after a long and happy life…he sleeps most of the time…but once awake I can always spark his interest with kitten photos and get him to share stories of the cats he’s loved…

    Ah Corbie…he always make me smile!