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Leia in the sun. Oh, I annoy that girl so very much, but I can’t help it!

Leia and Jareth, hanging out. I think they’d been taking a nap.

Kate in the sun. She is such a pretty girl.

Watching the kittens run around. Is it just me, or does she have a touch of the Loon going on here?

Jareth, joining Kate on the bed.

Gettin’ flirty.

Kate makes sure those babies stay CLEAN.

Aslan seems a bit disturbed.

Aslan in the sun. This room gets the best morning sun, and the kittens figured that out pretty quickly.

Aslan got a little too happy and went rolling over the side of the bed (but he caught himself before he fell.)

Frances asked yesterday how much the Royals kittens weigh now. They’re all well over two pounds – and Charming is actually three pounds now! You can see their weight chart at the bottom of their page, here. Technically they could all go to be spayed and neutered now, but they can’t have their rabies shot until they’re 12 weeks old, so I opted to just wait and have everything done at once.

The Dragons’ weight chart is at the bottom of their page, here. Size-wise, Scorch is comparable to Charming at the same age (Scorch hit 1 pound yesterday!), but the rest of the Dragons are weighing in lighter than the Royals did at the same age. Norbert was initially the smallest, but he and Ember weighed the same at 8 days old, and now he’s just a bit bigger than she is. They’re both still tiny little peanuts.

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“What doin’, lady?”

Norbert checks Ruth’s toes for cleanliness. He’s the cleanliness police.

Toes, toes everywhere!

Puff gets ever closer to escaping the crate. He hasn’t made it yet, but it won’t be long. And Scorch is right behind him!

Someone asked, last week (or the week before? I don’t remember when) if Scorch was really a tabby, because he just looks like a solid buff kitten. I’m honestly not sure what the official criteria is for a tabby, but he does have subtle stripes on his legs and tail. It wasn’t until I was looking through these pictures that I saw the faint “M” on his forehead. Surely the “M” means he’s a tabby?

I love that Khaleesi’s whiskers are in the side of this picture. She was sitting in my lap, being petted, and keeping an eye on her boys. She’s such an attentive mama.

“Ugh. So. CLOSE!”

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Maxi’s favorite thing to do is sharpen her claws on the tree roots. Well, wait – actually, her favorite thing to do is hang out in the garage all day long, snoozing in her bed in front of the window upstairs like a little lazybones. Her second favorite thing to do is sharpen her claws on the tree roots.


2012: “We is having a meeting, and you is not invited. Do we need to call Security?”
2011: No entry.
2010: “I couldn’t help it! I just wanted a snuggle and some canned food! I AM NOT a big baby! Okay, maybe I am. But I had to register my complaint, didn’t I?!”
2009: Yeah, poor babies. It’s a rough life!
2008: I imagine that in the operating room, the surgeon’s going to say “Why is she covered in small cuts [I originally typo’d “small cats”. HA!] from head to toe?”
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.



5-21-13 — 38 Comments

  1. I not sure the technical name (Old Cat would know) but we call kitties with faint tabby markings like that (usually black kitties but sometimes buffs, pinks, oranges or even browns) a “Shadow Tabby” because especially on the black kitties when they grow up they have “shadow stripes” and if they have some oriental in their background (getting more common in rescue kittens here in Ireland) you sometimes get “Shadow Points” too…very cute and as babies the markings tend to show up more but fade as they get older – not always but often.

    • Oh I’m in Ireland, too, and I think our current foster mama is very oriental looking.

    • All cats have a Tabby Gene with one pattern or another. The Agouti gene has a variant that will hide the pattern, but this doesn’t work on the pigment Orange or Buff cats are expressing, so all Orange cats will show Tabby stripes to some extent.

      When breeders attempt to get a solid, they are just trying to make the stripe color and background color be as close to the same as they can.

    • On a black cat you can still get shadow markings like Melody says where the stripe hairs react differently than agouti hairs to things like sunlight, or the overlay isn’t perfect.

      I hadn’t heard about shadow points before – which is a bit strange though since normal points take a while to show up, leaving the cat white at birth. Now, there are three kinds of pointing, one of which (Burmese) has much less of a gradient than Siamese. A cat with this kind of pointing will not have blue eyes and will be much darker on the body than a Siamese style pointed cat. A mix of Siamese and Burmese pointing genes gives the Tonkinese pattern, which is in-between.

      So one possibility is that these kittens are just Burmese pointed and not ‘shadow’ at all, as in cold climates the cat will be darker all over, obscuring the points even more.

  2. Robyn, there is an absolutely hilarious error in Jareth’s most recent weight. I looked at it, and before it registered as a typo I actually thought, “I thought Charming was the big one!” Kate is gorgeous, by the way. And that Aslan — so cute! I just want to take them all home… The Dragons too…

  3. I just have a question I thought you might be able to answer. It’s nearly winter here in Australia, and I have a suspicion that my cat is more hungry than usual. It feels like she is always bothering me for food. Someone said she might be fattening up for winter – do you notice your cats doing that?

    • I actually do notice several of them putting on weight as winter draws near, and then they take it off again in the spring. It’s more noticeable with Newt and Maxi (the ones who spend more time outside), but I see it happen with Sugarbutt and Tommy, too. I’m pretty sure it’s normal.

  4. I hope the same person/family adopts Leia and Jareth: they’re so often together. And could today be the day Scorch and Puff cross the rubicon?!

  5. Red non-tabbies don’t have the tabby gene fully suppressed… so even non- tabby reds(and creams) will look slightly tabby. Just not as stripey as actual tabbies- but it’s pretty hard to tell! In pedigree breeding, red litters have to be registered as tabby unless you can prove definitively otherwise. Scorch looks solid cream to me not cream tabby but he’s still young and cream is a hard colour to tell anyway.

    You can see the effect on calico/ tortie cats- the black parts will be solid black but the red patches more broken. (Miz Poo has a slight ‘M’ but is not tabby) In cali and tortie- tabbies obviously the ‘black’ will be stripey too- brown tabby. (Alice Mo and Khaleesi are both tabby)

    • This is right.

      One thing you can look for on the “tabby” red is the pale chin that tabbys have, assuming it isn’t covered up by white spotting.

  6. That photo of Aslan rolling off the bed is hysterical — too bad we don’t have video of that! C’mon, Robyn, get it together!

    Are the Dragons showing their toes more than other litters? Seems like we see a LOT of toes, both in their pics and their videos.

    Here’s a question I’m hoping the L&H community can give me their wisdom and experience about: Do you buy pet insurance for your cats?

    I am looking at the ASPCA policies, which are the first I’ve come across that will insure senior pets (if they enroll before age 13, I think it is). Since I’ve had three cats die in the past two years, and had to let two of them go without much treatment because of the expense and then spent several thousand on the third before she also passed, it’s made me think that maybe insurance IS something that would be good to have.

    However, insuring the one cat that is eligible (because she’s not hit age 13 yet) would run about $500/year if I include all the things that I think are worthwhile to have (that is, I don’t think the bare-bones policy is worth the money because I can pay out of pocket for the stuff the bare-bones policy would cover …) Anyway, I’d really love to hear what others have done….

    • I’m going to post the insurance question in Friday’s post.

      I do think that the Dragons are spending more time rolling around on their backs than the Royals did. I wonder if that’s partly because they have more room to roll than the Royals (who were in a smaller bed) did.

    • I have pet insurance on both my cats. I adopted them as adults, but they were younger adults, so luckily I was able to get a great policy on them (or I think it’s great anyways) via “PetPlan”. Living in DC it’s cost a little over 700 dollars a year for two cats (things are *@$*@$&* expensive here in general; and I got the uber-everything-plan); but it’s saved me thousands and thousands of dollars over the last few years; and the peace of mind is great. 🙂

      • Thanks, Ali. I’m in the same area (northern VA), so maybe the $500 policy for my senior cat that no one else will insure isn’t as outrageous as I’d originally thought. I’m wondering what kinds of medical services your cats have had that having the insurance saved you thousands and thousands of dollars.

        • One of my cats (only months after I’d bought the policies!) developed cystitis (female, thankfully), which led to two vet visits and associated workup. This was shortly followed by (same cat) a complete and utter lack of appetite and unexplained weight loss that ended up requiring a fairly complete workup (ultrasound w/ sedation; bloodwork including special tests only done at specialty labs, etc…a good $5,000 that year with her five or six vet visits and specialty tests and the sedation and prescriptions, etc.; if not for the insurance); plus a visit to a specialist vet and appetite stimulants prescriptions for a good year till she started eating on her own again. (it’s also req’d special prescription food; but the insurance doesn’t cover that). More recently, my other kitteh got an eye infection that I had to have treated (successfully–about $200 bucks); and then only a few months later was acting really odd and possibly altering his litterbox patterns; so I had him evaluated for that ($250-ish to $300 bucks).

  7. someone should tell Scorch that one good shove and Puff would be outta there 🙂

    • Last night Fred picked up Puff and put him on the bed in front of the crate, and Scorch stomped over to the opening to the crate, and you could just see him thinking “HOW DID HE DO THAT?!” It was SO cute. 🙂

  8. Thank you for the weight charts.. Odilia is weighing out at 1 lb 3 oz.. and she is at least 8 wks old, so now I know how far behind she really is.. I swear I’m going to have that kitten to my birthday if not beyond…

    • Holy cow, she is a TINY little peanut, isn’t she?

      I’m planning to keep weight charts on all the kittens from here on out, because I like being able to see where the Dragons are, compared to the Royals. I wish I’d been doing it all along!

    • It does. It’s where we put all the crap we don’t use but “might need someday.”

      (Prediction: we’ll never need any of it.)

  9. I am in awe at the cleanliness of your foster rooms. The only time my foster room is that clean is, well, when I’m not fostering. Kudos!

  10. Glad to see from the chart that Kate is putting a few ounces back on!

    And Norbert looks sooo much more cat-ish than the other dragons @ this age! Like a miniature kitty! 🙂

  11. The picture of Kate doing some Looning, directly under it, Jereth is pulling some loon of his own!

  12. I am firmly convinced that the Dragons spend so much time on their backs because they’re trying to rub their wings out.

  13. Love all the fascinating cat genetics comments. I’m learning so much!