Jump to comments

My husband had a dream that we were animal control officers, and we would trap animals of all kinds and the city would pay us per animal to euthanize them. What the city didn’t know was that we would secretly in the middle of the night, load up the truck and take all the animals out to live with you and Fred. Thanks for helping us cheat the city and save the animals. πŸ™‚

Oh, it’s our pleasure. πŸ˜‰

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Apart from scooping poop most of the day, do you spend the rest of the time brushing the herd? They all seem to have amazing coats.

I brush the ones who’ll put up with it, because I LOVE using the Furminator on the cats. It’s so satisfying to get so much fur so quickly! Some of them – especially Spanky – don’t care for being brushed, though, and in fact will run when they see the brush. Which always makes me laugh – you’d think I use the thing to beat them with instead of helping to get that annoying loose fur off their bodies!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

In the kitten photos, are those double bowls attached to each other? Close up photo and purchasing information, please.

They certainly are! Here’s a closeup:



I got them at Old Time Pottery (I always want to call it “Old Tyme Pottery”) last year sometime. When you have a large number of kittens, it’s easier to use the attached bowls rather than trying to balance 6 individual dishes at snack time. I was actually looking for one of those hors d’ oeuvres dishes, one of the round ones with several individual bowls around the plate? That apparently doesn’t exist except in my own mind, since I can’t seem to find an example online anywhere. But now that I’m thinking about it, a deviled egg tray might work pretty well.

Actually, what would make the most sense would be to take a regular dinner plate and put blops (that’s the scientific term) of canned food around the plate and let them figure it out. It’s not like they stick to their own plate anyway, is it?

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Andersons know NOT the insane amoount of photos I have stolen from them…I just use them as inspirations of future art works, nothing untoward!

I just would like y’all to know that as long as you aren’t using my pictures to make money, or claiming that you took them yourselves, feel free to use them as wallpaper or whatever it is you want to use them for – it makes me happy to think of my babies making y’all happy!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Do you mean to say that that cheeky Alice has worked out how to exit the backyard? Why else would she be wearing the “special” collar?

The collar is just a preventative measure. She’s actually small enough that I don’t think she could get over the barriers we’ve put in place around the fence posts, but I’d rather be safe than sorry. Fred would be very sad if he lost his bratty little princess!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

For some reason, I didn’t think Miz Poo ever went outside. She looks extra-lovely in the open air!

She doesn’t spend as much time outside as the other cats, but except for Stinkerbelle all the cats go out into the back yard from time to time. For that matter, Stinkerbelle could go out into the back yard, but she’s never quite figured out the cat door, and since she’s what we refer to as our “house feral”, I’d rather not have to worry about her getting outside and then figuring how to get over the fence, so I’m okay with her being inside-only.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Oh wise (and slightly crazy) cat lady, I need your help.

For a few weeks, one of my 4 cats has been pooping in the corner of one of the bedrooms. Doesn’t matter if the litter boxes are clean or not. Keeping the door closed solved that problem. Then, on Monday, my husband decided we needed a dog. He’s an outdoor dog, the cats are both indoor and outdoor. None of the cats are happy about this at all. And now the oldest of our cats, an 11 year old male is spraying (I didn’t know fixed cats could do that!), peeing and pooping on all the bathmats/bathrooms in the house. Short of never letting him in the house again, what do I do? I promise to send you cookies if you can solve this problem for me! we are pretty sure the bedroom pooper is the same cat, but have no proof.

I’m sure there’s advice out there to be had – and anyone with advice, do feel free to leave it in the comments! – but despite the timing I’d still suggest you take the offending pooper to the vet to be checked over, just in case. The fact that the pooping started before you got the dog indicates that it could possibly be a health issue, especially given his age. If he checks out as healthy, all I can suggest is to try Feliway (the plug-ins and the spray).

I’m sure someone out there has more/ better advice for Jennifer. Chime in here, folks!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Gracie and George are the prettiest puppies ever. Do you have any baby pictures of them?

Have you met me? πŸ™‚ OF COURSE I have baby pictures of them. Well – toddler pictures, I guess. They were about four months old when we brought them home.





There are a TON more of them, of course, over at Flickr.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Someday soon, could you post individual photos of the McMaos and point out their distinguishing features? I know it’s a lot to ask, but they’re so darn cute!

I’ll have you know that I didn’t even have to go take more pictures to fulfill this request – the amount of pictures I take of these kittens is absolutely ridiculous – but I can’t help it! So in no particular order, here they are.



Before I taught myself which kitten was which, I secretly called Declan “nostril” because one of his nostrils is black. In a comment, McFinn said Declan has always been the Batman kitty to me since he looks like he’s wearing a dark (tabby) cowl that comes down to his nose, exposing his lower face. Even has the bat ears going on. I can definitely see the resemblance, and now I like to hold him up and say “I’m Batman!”, which he does not appreciate in the slightest.



Macushla has a black nose and white whisker pads. He’s also a snuggler, and he and Fergus Simon are almost always either in my lap or about to climb into my lap. Macushla and Ciara are the darkest kittens.



Ciara’s the only girl, of course. She’s got the pink nose and then all that white on her face, and then the very dark fur. I’d almost call her black and white except for the brown tabby stripes on her sides and legs.



Finnegan also has a pink nose, but his dark fur is a lot lighter than Ciara’s. He’s always the first one to run for the closet if startled, usually closely followed by Cillian. Finnegan plays really well with the other kittens, but is also just as happy to play with a toy by himself.



Cillian has that pretty clay-colored nose with the dash of white above it. He has such a serious little face, and he always looks like he’s worried about something. Whereas the other kittens jump right into playing, Cillian will observe what’s going on before he joins in. I call him my little detective, because he misses nothing.

Fergus Simon:


Fergus Simon is my little lovebug, and will usually fight with Macushla for dominance of my lap. He likes to sit in my lap and swipe at the other kittens as they race by (though he’ll eventually be overcome with the need to fight, and will go racing after them).

Can you believe these little monsters are 7 weeks old as of tomorrow? The time has flown by! I weighed them the other day (I don’t know that my scale is all that reliable, though, given that it told me Dorothy was over 2 pounds when we got her, and she was quite a bit less at the vet’s!) and except for Ciara, they’re all right around 2 pounds. Which means it’ll be time to spay and neuter the little monsters in a couple of weeks. But no hurry, we can wait a little while to be sure they’re all solidly over 2 pounds before I take them to the vet.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Miss Dorfy, hanging out in her favorite cat bed.

::maniacal laughter::

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Stinkerbelle, atop the kitchen cabinet, keeping an eye out for her beloved Tommy.


2010: Between the Bookworms and the Rescuees, my home is awash in sweet kittens.
2009: I sure am going to miss the little monkeys.
2008: “You ever get that feeling like someone’s watching you?”
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: This is Flossie.



5-20-11 — 35 Comments

  1. Stinkerbelle sure has striking features/colors on her face! Just lovey!

    Thanks for the side by side comparisons of all the kitties!

    I said, “Holy S” (S = the whole word though) when I saw the pics of George and Gracie as pups. 1) Unbelievably cute (and still are) 2) You can totally tell that it is them!!!!

    Dorfy – [snicker]

  2. Oh by the way, Robyn, read the entry “And Then There Were Kittens” over at http://honeyrockdawn.com/ – You will laugh your butt off cuz it will sound oddly familiar! All I could think about was YOU when I read this.

    • I just went and read that, GD, and for some reason it seems like something that might happen here. I wonder why that is… πŸ˜€

  3. Jennifer, vet check him first, then I would pick up all the bathmats as they are his targeted source (and hope he doesn’t find a new one). Try Feliway as Robyn suggested… Also, you may want to add another cat box. Maybe put it in an area that would be most attractive to him. Also, extra cuddles and attention. Those are my suggestions. But as Robyn said, he was doing some of this prior to the dogs…so something else triggered it. Yes, the dogs may have exacerbated it…but…there was some other trigger first. Try and figure out what it was/is. Did any of your other cats start picking on him? My youngest likes to ambush my oldest (2 vs 9) when she is in the cat box. Seriously, how rude and WRONG is that? I run interferance. Perhaps something like that is going on….

    • I meant to mention and forgot that Ciara’s lower lip is half black as though she was putting on her lipstick and got distracted. These kittens and their half-done makeup jobs! πŸ™‚

  4. I have 7 kitties and when I brought home #8, she used the box and was fine for a month and then all of a sudden started pooping in the dining room. The vet checked her and I used feliway, but the pooping continued. The vet said she was probably scared by someone in the box and was afraid of it now. So I moved a special box to the dining room for a few days, and she used it instead of the carpet. After about two weeks, I moved that special box into the cat room and haven’t had a problem since.

  5. Best advice is first see vet and make sure nothing is wrong (he’s probably fine, but you need to know) then pick up and wash anything he’s gone after and don’t put it back (besides a solid floor is easier to clean). Try locking Old Man Grouch in a room by himself with his own cat pan, preferably a small room like a little used bathroom or even a larger closet. Try to have a chair for you to visit in with a book, some toys etc. Let him be by himself except for human family visits for at least three or four days, then bring his favorite kitties in to visit him.

    We’ve had several elderly cats do things like this, and so far our best solution has been a relocation outside of the offenders; but then we live far from the road and have indoor/outdoor spaces for the barn cats. We can let them in under supervision for short periods to be petting in the kitchen etc.

    This is most likely a territory thing, so if you need to have Mr. Grumps inside, he needs to have one room (with litter box) he feels is his. If that seems to work, you can gradually leave the door open more often or maybe just leave him the room. My Main Coon was doing exactly as you described and became and outdoor cat for ten years, at which point health wise she needed to come in.

    I “gave” her my office and she rules the roost in here, she only has “accidents” when ill (she has a few bowel problems) but because it is her territory, she no longer marks with “cat product” of either sort. Its going on five years now and we both enjoy each others company a great deal. So office cat (or den cat) is another option; but it has to be a room you can handle having a covered pan in.

    Hope that helps,

  6. Thanks for the individual photos of the kittens – I will study them closely in case I run into one of the kittens in a dark alley one night and need to i.d. him/her. πŸ™‚

    What is their fur like? Short, it seems, but soft? wiry?

    And yes, I too love the photos of Gracie and George has 4-month-old very big pups!

    • Ciara’s fur is very silky soft and all the boys have very wiry, coarse fur.

  7. Lordy I love it when kittens/cats prairie dog like that!

    Yeah, one of my guys will not let the Furminator or any brush near her. It’s the only time she’ll hiss and be generally all in your face. The boys though – LOVE IT. All I have to do is pull the thing out of its hiding spot and they’ll come running from the other side of the apartment, even if they’ve been asleep. Just like opening the cheese drawer in the fridge…

    I love those puppies… *sigh*

  8. @Jennifer Vet check first. I had 3 cats with 4 litter boxes in different parts of the house for a time. One cat would chase the largest (and least smart) cat off of any box he would try to use. The chaser was the one who was shut in the bathroom as her “kennel” while I was at work. She figured out within a week that chasing cats off the litter box meant she wouldn’t have the run of the house. I don’t use any rugs with rubber backing. They give off the smell of urea and some cats and dogs smell it as a place to poop. This can happen with some carpets and floor finishes, too. Feliway might help the general population cope with the new dog.

    I remember those hors d’oeuvres dishes. They may show up as relish plates and are similar to fondue plates. I occasionally see plates with compartments in the asian sections of stores like Old Time, Pier One, T J Maxx, World Market and such. I would think it would be easier to notice if one of the kitties is having a problem eating if they have different plates or eating area even if they do move around a eat from each others.

    Love the pictures. All of them. I’ll bookmark your flickr page.

    That last picture of Dorothy reminds me of one on lolcats, way back when it had funny picture/captions. “Laugh…and the whole world laughs with you. Laugh hysterically, for no apparent reason and they’ll leave you alone.”

  9. Finnegan just kills me, especially that second shot..
    and that stand up shot of Fergus Simon… just made me smile.

    As for the kitty with the issue, I also advise a vet visit. Most of the time inappropriate elimination is medical. It often seems coincidental for a reason, and that being that stress can often bring about a medical issue. The dog doesn’t need to stay outside, but it does need to have some limits in the house. Provide places for the cats that the dog can not go. Cat trees will get the cats up off the floor (in dog territory) so they can be above (and superior) the situation and observe in peace.

    If you were to ask a cat, they would tell you that can’t have too many litter boxes, but you can definitely have too few. Add a few more around the house in dog safe locations. It will be inconvenient for a while but they don’t need to stay there forever. Put them in spots he’s had an ‘accident’ and anywhere else you deem acceptable for you.

    Feliway and Rescue Remedy work well. as does Cat Attract. I’ve also suggested isolating the main offender but make sure it is not a punishment but just a retraining. Agreed that if one kitty is causing the others to not use the box, isolate the trouble maker. If you just have kitties not using the box, isolate that one. When food and bedding is much closer to the waste disposal area, they tend to be a bit more cautious about using it. After a few days of good habits, you can start letting him out when you can watch him. After a few good days of no inappropriate elimination, you can start letting him out when you can’t directly watch him but are home. and then if all goes well he can have privileges again.

    • You know, I just saw a show where a kitty went psycho when they got a dog. All the kitty needed was to feel safe and all they had to do was provide vertical platforms for the kitty to get off the floor, couch, and places where the dog could get to him. When he had a lovely climbing perch and could look down at the pooch (and stick his tongue out at him *pfthhhhh*) he became sane again!

    • Thanks, Joyce – I’m looking for something a bit bigger, but I just wasted a good amount of time on the Crate and Barrel website. I love that store! πŸ™‚

  10. Assuming there’s no problem found at the vet, and that the initial offender is the same one who is spraying all over now with the dogs, I think you should see if possibly the original issue is that the one box was getting too far as the cat gets older. When one of my cats got old, the boxes in the garage often just became too far some of the time for her, and adding a box closer was a great relief.

    This could explain why the problem went away until you got the dogs – perhaps the closed door changed his patterns so that he was closer to the box and could make it.

  11. Robyn,

    I came across this story at http://www.catsparella.com/2011/05/woman-miraculously-reunited-with.html and immediately thought of you as this was in Tuscaloosa πŸ™‚

    Now I have to go get another box of kleenex after I used all mine watching this ! πŸ™‚

    Love the pup pictures of Gracie and George – especially the third picture…too cute!

    Awww..the McMaos are growing up too fast! Maggie and you have certainly raised a litter of beautiful kittens!

    Sorry, no advice for Jennifer on the inappropriate pooper/peeer(that spelling doesn’t look right..but you know what I mean πŸ™‚ )other than what has already been given..I would definetely do a vet check up first to eliminate any health issues.

    • Oh, how sweet – and what a happy, happy ending!!! I need to go get my own box of kleenex. πŸ™‚

  12. george and gracie were even cuter (is that possible?!) as puppies – I’ve always loved that breed but know it would be too much for me with all the grooming and space they need.

    Oh those baby McMaos – i love them so!

    oh and to the person with the inappropriate pooper/peeer – agree with everyone else that has posted – vet!

  13. Great to catch up with Stinkerbelle! For a future Q&A: Does Fergus Simon have the longest whiskers of the bunch as well?

  14. Thanks for the kitten breakdown – that will help a lot (for about 5 minutes til I forget). They are all adorable so I just go with that.

    And for the divided plates – the crate and barrel may be bigger than you think – the one that is clear with three in a row is actually super deep – I would think too much so for kittens, and it breaks super easily (I have that one – used to have 2 but it broke – super easily). Anyway when you described it, in my mind I saw fondue dishes or Ikea – for example http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/60101336 (the other divided one they have on the website won’t work – it is too deep and smaller than the Crate and Barrel one – I know because I have both!) Like exactly what type/size are you looking for (I ask because I might actually have something that could work I just have to take a look at home first)

    And oh, Miss Dorothy – I just adore you. She is so wildcat like and that is just so cute in someone so tiny! Email me if you have the chance and I will take a look when I get home also.

    Hi Stinkerbell!

  15. I’m kind of looking for a veggies and dip platter, I think – something like this, only with more divided bowl sections? Really, after looking around I’m starting to think a deviled egg platter is kind of ideal. There are some really pretty ones out there!

  16. Love the teenage pics of George and Gracie! I remember you’ve said before that they keep your chickens safe. How did you train them to do that? Are they just super smart and intuitive, or did you have to specially instruct them in protecting your animals?

  17. Further to the divided-dish discussion, you might consider a Seder plate — seriously!

  18. Cute overload!! Cute overload!!!

    Awwwwwwwww, I love love love these beautiful pics of George and Gracie and the McMaos and my little Dorothy!! πŸ™‚ and adorable Stinkerbelle! Your permanent kitties have the most amazing names! LOL!

    Take care

  19. Thank you for the descriptions of all the kittens! I had no idea! *cuddles them all then absconds with Macushla, Fergus Simon and Cillian and runs away* Muhahaha! XD So. cute. *also pets Dorothy torbieness and Stinkerbelle, if she’ll allow it* You know, I’ve heard the term ‘house feral’ before, for exactly the kind of kitty Stinkerbell (Stinkerbelle?) sounds like she is.

    On an unrelated note, yaaaaay Rufus! I’m not surprised that someone fell in love with his soft, sweet, fuzzy self, but I am pleased. Go kitty!

    Miss Maggie McMeowball is a brown tabby herself, isn’t she? I can never remember.

  20. I really love the big mouths!!!! The :maniacal laughter: is so funny and cute!!!! Love!
    Have a great weekend!

  21. I was at an estate sale early this morning that had an hors d’oeuvres dish, but it was Spode and it was $40. Sorry! πŸ™‚