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Thanks to all for the advice you gave regarding my refusing-to-eat Gravy the other day. She enjoyed a trip to the vet during which she was pronounced healthy but angry, and we were given a laxative to help her pass hairballs, which seems to be part of the problem (another part is that she’s a brat). She’s been eating about 50% of her food since (but only dry kibble, no wet food — what a weirdo) and unhappily licking her daily dose of laxative off her paws, because I’ll be damned if I’m going to try to smear that stuff on the roof of her mouth as my vet so easily did. I got a claw deep in my hand last night in my attempt to do so and promptly gave up. It’s just too hot to fight with her.

Two things. (1) I love the name “Gravy” so very much, and (2) I’m going to start asking the vet to diagnose some of my cats with “Healthy but angry.”

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I love how your plates match the cats πŸ™‚

2012-07-04 (9)

I find it very important to have the cats match the household. Or the household match the cats. You’ll note that the cabinets and the cats blend together nicely, too!

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Noelegy said: I got the goofies today. I looked back at that picture, and this is what popped into my head:

“We represent the Litterbox Guild,
The Litterbox Guild,
The Litterbox Guild…”

You are welcome for that earworm. πŸ™‚

And then Sourpuss said: That would be a fantastic name for a kitty blog!

Best kitty blog name idea ever! Someone out there needs to jump on that!

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This may seem like a random question… What font are you using for the watermark? I really like it. I won’t steal your pics, but I may steal the font! πŸ˜‰

That font is Gabriola. I like it because it’s script-y and flow-y and not block-y (I tend to prefer either script-y fonts, or no-nonsense Arial. Nothing in-between!)

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OK, let me wax poetic about your amazing photography skillz because it’s darn near impossible to get a half-way decent photo of a squirming kitten, let alone an entire blog worth of gorgeous ones like yours. My camera is on it’s last legs and needs replacing, but I’m not sure that even with a new camera I’d be able to get shots like yours… between natural kitten bounciness and the camera strap/lens cap being the BEST TOYZ EVER(!) I’ve got lots of blurry cute on my memory card right now. But they are excessively adorable blurs, I promise!

I am NOT kidding when I say that I maybe keep one out of every 100 pictures I take. Thank god for digital cameras!

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Any word on more Noms being adopted?

No more Noms adopted yet – I think that adoptions slow down during holidays – but I have a good feeling about this weekend! Fingers crossed!

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Spanky looks like he’s losing weight… is he OK?


I’m too lazy to search, but has Spanky been tested for his thyroid? Our old cat had an overactive thyroid and was skinnier and skinnier for the last couple of years of her life. There was just no way to fatten her up no matter how much she ate. But she seemed happy enough until right at the end. He’s still my favourite.

Spanky has lost some weight, and after several visits to the vet and every test under the sun, it’s determined that he’s healthy and there’s nothing wrong with him. I think, honestly, it’s just part of his getting old (he’s almost 16). He’s always been picky, but he’s just not that interested in eating these days. I tempt him with all of his favorites – raw meat, dabs of yogurt, jars of baby food, cans of kitten food – and sometimes he eats everything I give him, and sometimes he takes a bite or two and then he’s done. At this point, pretty much any food he shows the slightest bit of interest in is his if he wants it.

He’s thin, but he’s happy, so I’m not taking him to the vet any more. He freaks out so badly that it takes him a week to recover. As long as he’s happy and eating sometimes and getting around okay, I’m happy.

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How much longer will she be nursing the kittens??

That is entirely up to Brandywine- she’s made it clear to the kittens lately that she’s not the 24/7 milk bar, so I’d say she’s in the process of weaning them. They’re all eating solid food just fine, and they’ve gotten the snack time routine down pat – they follow me around the room howling when they know it’s snack time. I generally leave weaning up to the mama cats – last year, Maggie’s kittens were almost 4 months old when they went off to Petsmart, and they were still nursing whenever they could. In fact, the babies were in a cage separate from Maggie, and I had to put a note on the cage that it was okay to let Maggie and the kittens out together, but not to let them nurse. Lisa reported that she let them out and within seconds the little monsters were latched on. I think they’d STILL be nursing if they could!

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I think you’re slacking….you’re missing a banner on the right for the Maters bunch!

There’s no banner for the ‘Maters, and there’s no Permanent Residents page for Rupert. I am a total slacker – but those are on my to-do list!

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So happy for Mr. Stomps-a-lot finding a home… he is such a cutie pie… remind me how old he is, compared to the Maters n Taters. Or, is he just a small little runt?

Stompers is two months old as of yesterday, Norland and Russet are just over three months old. The little Taters are about 10 days younger than Norland and Russet. And the β€˜Maters are about 8 weeks – Stompers is actually guesstimated to be a few days older than the β€˜Maters are.

The only reason Kennebec, Agata, and Fianna haven’t been spayed and neutered yet is because it was taking Fianna forEVER to get to two pounds. She finally has (and Kennebec’s at three!), so they’ll be going to the clinic soon.

Stompers hovered at 1 pound, 4 ounces for ages, it seemed, but he’s started to put on weight in the last few days. He’s currently at a pound and a half.

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We adopted two kittens last year and I update their foster moms every so often.. I am not sure that my updates are especially welcome – there never seems to be much of a response. Just wondering how you feel about the frequency of updates and should I give it up after we’ve had them for a year.

I absolutely LOVE getting updates about my former fosters, and I don’t think I could ever get enough of them. I love hearing how they’re doing, and love seeing what they look like as they’ve grown up.

Connie had this to add, which I think was right-on:

I can tell you I LOVE them when I get them. Often it is hard to know what to say because you know the kitties have moved on and aren’t β€œmine” any more. I don’t want to say anything to offend or come off incredibly crazy (I expect people to think I’m a little crazy)

You could always ask. There are a slew of different reasons to suggest why sending photos might not be appropriate (too big for her mail server, work email, too many emails, too busy, etc) you can pick one, even if it seems silly, and ask. If she takes the excuse then you have your answer. If she says no way I love seeing them, then you know you aren’t bothering her.

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Here’s something I learned the hard way. Our cat kneaded and sucked regularly. I gave him a nice small sheepskin type “blanket” and he adored it, carried it around in his mouth (so cute!) and nursed on it. A lot. After a year or so, he started vomiting so off he went to the vet’s with his blanket in his crate for comfort. They kept him for 2 days and did a set of xrays requiring anesthesia plus blood work only to finally decide it was bits of fluff in his digestive system. Much worry and $900 later (I know!!) we brought him home, threw out his blanket and haven’t had any issues since. That was 3 years ago. Mind you, the sheepskin was very shaggy so tufts came off fairly easily I guess. He still kneads and sucks occasionally, but on a low pile blanket or towel and not very often. I felt very stupid and a lot poorer after that episode!

I’m so glad your kitty is okay (but sorry about the vet bill!). This is a great tip – the beds and blankets that the kittens suck on here have been through the wash a million times and are pretty threadbare, but I always tug on the area where they’re sucking to make sure nothing is coming up. We don’t want any blockages, that’s for sure!

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I am deeply envious of your pool. It was 102 here yesterday, supposed to be in the 90-100 range for the next TEN DAYS which is completely insane because this is June in Ohio. I should get a pool. And keep it filled with ice water while I pray for the heat to break.

It was over 100 here for a few days in a row. The water in the pool was very warm – no coolness to it at all – and I did my very best to convince Fred to go over to the dollar store and buy 20 bags of ice to put in the pool. Instead, he ran some water from the well into the pool to cool it down a bit, so that helped. I love our pool an awful lot, I just wish we’d put it under a tree, or partially under a tree, so it wouldn’t get quite so warm.

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LOL! The Smitten Kitten is a sex-toy shop in Uptown Minneapolis. πŸ˜€

2012-06-21 (9)

Inspector Stompers not judging you.

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Enjoying the produce but it’s kind of overwhelming. You must have a really big freezer. What is in the bucket at 2 o’clock? I can’t make it out but they look almost like artichoke silhouettes.

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Those are turnips. We didn’t end up with many of them – Fred really planted them for the greens, but after I harvested the greens last month, we saw that there were some pretty big turnips growing, so we let them get a bit bigger and then pulled them up.

We do have lots of freezer space – not only do we have the freezer space in our TWO refrigerators (the refrigerator we had at our previous house was too big for the space in our kitchen here, so we put it in the laundry room), but we have one upright freezer in the laundry room (which is where most of the veggies we freeze go) and two chest freezers in the garage (which mostly hold meat). Given all the freezer space we have and all the stuff we freeze, you’d think there were a lot more than two people living here. On the up side, we don’t spend much on groceries!

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We had our first locally grown corn this weekend. Since it has been so dry the sugar was more concentrated in the corn and boy was it good. I told Dave I would ask you how you process corn to freeze. Do you ever freeze it on the cob?

I do freeze it on the cob, though this year I’m cutting all the corn off the cobs and freezing it in bags because we have a fairly limited amount of freezer space for corn. You can actually just put the ears, still in the husk, in bags in the freezer. I’ve done it that way, and I’ve shucked the corn and blanched it before freezing, and I think it’s better if you leave it in the husk.

I’ve been blanching the corn (Fred’s kind enough to shuck it before he brings it in) and then cutting it off the cob (I use a mandoline – this one), scrape the cob with a knife to get all the corny (heh) goodness out, and then bag it in 2-cup bags and stick it in the freezer.

I swear I could eat corn at every meal!

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Do you amend your soil/fertilize/etc. every year? My garden looks so lovely but doesn’t always produce a ton… this year I tested the soil and needed mass quantities of nitrogen and potassium which I tried to provide so we’ll see if it’s better…

A few years ago, Fred sent off a soil sample and I don’t remember what the results were, but he amended the entire garden, and that year was nothing to write home about. This year when we were planting, we put a healthy scoop of composted chicken poop along the rows where we were planting. It seems to have helped a lot – I’ve never gotten such gorgeous tomatoes.

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Thanks everyone for your advice on the watermarking issue. After a lot of looking around, I’ve downloaded a program that will watermark a bunch of pictures at once, and will use the font I want. So for now they’ll be watermarked – though of course I reserve the right to get annoyed and stop again in the future. πŸ™‚

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2012-07-06 (1)
I love how Sungold is simultaneously wailing about how he’s STARVING to Brandywine, and draping his tail over Wellington’s head.

2012-07-06 (2)
Wellington, eye on the feather teaser.

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“Maybe if I am very very quiet…”

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“If I flirt with it…”

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“Look, feather teaser! Kitty belleh! Pay no mind to the flailing claws.”

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“I can’t watch this…”

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I cannot stand how gorgeous Dingwall Scotty is. It looks like he’s got white eyeliner on.

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Brandywine takes a moment to chill out.

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I was actually putting this post together last night when I got the word that there’s room for Floofy and the Grump at Petsmart. So in a little while, I’ll be off to get them settled. They’ve actually been here a month, can you believe that?

I don’t have pictures of them today, but I have some on my camera that I’ll definitely share with y’all, so you haven’t seen the last of them!

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I pulled this little plastic basket out from under the bed, and Stompers was instantly fascinated.

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He climbed in and he and Kennebec smacked at each other.

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Kennebec totally looks like Godzilla here.

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The girls came over to check it out.

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Stompers watched closely.

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Kennebec climbed into the basket.

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Then Stompers got another turn.

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Look how gentle Stompers is here.

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“Bless you, my child.”

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And then it went terribly wrong. Kennebec reached into the basket and grabbed Stompers’ tail.

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This picture makes me snicker every time I look at it. I wish my stupid leg wasn’t in the way, but the look on that little face cracks me UP. (Rest assured, Kennebec wasn’t hurting him, Stompers was just being a bit of a drama queen.)

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2012-07-06 (22)
Silly, goofy (GORGEOUS) Corbs. Newt was just off camera, and Corbie was talking to him.


2011: Or a stay of… adoptacution?
2010: No entry.
2009: Kinda creepy!
2008: No entry.
2007: It’s tough to be a Toms.
2006: No entry.
2005: Mia.



7-6-12 — 52 Comments

  1. “Bless you my child”…BWAAAHHHHHH

    I actually said, “Awwwww”…out loud when I saw poor little Stompers face after Kennebec got his tail. Kiss the baby, for me.

    I think my lip quivered when I read that Floof is going to PetSmart. He and Stompers really realy want to be MINE!!! *sigh*

    Hello, Corbs – sexy man!

  2. By the way, did you notice Agata’s face in the “Then Stompers got another turn.” photo? πŸ™‚

  3. Godspeed, Russet and Norland. Hope you get adopted together. And I’m counting on some kind people with good taste taking home some Noms soonest. Thanks for commenting on Dingwall Scotty’s spectacular eyeliner, Robyn. I’d noticed it, but since you hadn’t said anything, thought I must be crazy (not, I fear, for the last time!). And Corbie, you are world-rockingly fab.

  4. Loved the blessing photo! My cat has always stretched one paw out toward us and we call it a blessing. He’s ten now and when we ask him for a blessing he gives one. It cracks me up!

    • In no way was that a blessing by Stompers!!! That little runt was reaching out to encourage the rukus another round! ;-D So friggin’ cute! And I agree w/SC Amy… Stompers needs to be on the banner! Fortunately I don’t bear the burden of making the the selection of who goes, or… could you just squeeze him in ~ so tiny and all!?! Bon weekend!

  5. Ok, I still must be sleepy, because when I started reading this morning I was like “Wait, Gravy is MY cat’s name!” …Then I realized you were quoting my comment. Yeah… Anyway, glad you like her name! She’s a little brown tabby with polydactyl front paws. She’s super-pretty (kinda looks like Corbs) and sweet, except at the vet’s office, where she turns into a hellbeast.

    Dingwall Scotty (I love THAT name!) looks kinda like he has human lips in the “white eyeliner” photo. He’s adorable.

    Good luck to Grumps and the Floof. I hope they find homes (along with the remaining Noms) soon.

    • Alexandra, now that we’ve all giggled at Gravy’s name, you’ve got to tell us how you came up with it!

      • Well, it has to do with those big ol’ extra-toed paws. Every other part of her body is striped or spotted except for her most distinctive feature, her polydactyl man-hands, so “Gravy” came about because it looked like she had dipped those giant paws in something brown (she does enjoy dipping them in the water dish, the weirdo). Also, she was the third cat to enter our two-cat household, and so she was the “Gravy” on top of our original felines. She proved an excellent playmate to Buddy, the younger of our original two, who had been torturing the older cat, a cranky tortie named Snack. Buddy got a playmate and Snack got some peace in her old age.

        • Holy cow…that is my story. My youngest was torturing my eldest (a tortie) so that is why I got him Lola. She has proven to be an excellent playmate! πŸ™‚

  6. I don’t check much anymore since you don’t update as often. Will you post here when you have jellies for sale or do I need to check there? My son has a newly acquired taste for pepper jelly! Thanks!

    • Got to share something with you that’s really delicious if you like pepper jelly. Take the jelly and schmear it on the top of a “brick” of cream cheese. Eat with Ritz crackers. We’ve tried this with both red pepper jelly that we got at Walmart, and blueberry jalapeno preserves that we got at Buc-Ee’s (a Texas convenience store chain that has an awesome flagship store in Madisonville that sells all manner of snacks, jerky, jams, jellies, and relishes).

      • I said “schmear,” but we pretty much just plop the entire jar’s worth of jelly on top of the cream cheese and set it out as a communal snack. πŸ™‚

      • I so totally love pepper jelly on cream cheese, and it impresses the living daylights out of anyone who has never had/seen it before..

      • Oh, hold the phone: blueberry jalapeno preserves? I’m going to have to try making a batch of that. Blueberries are my favorite fruit!

        I always eat jalapeno jelly with cream cheese on Ritz crackers – we do the jar over a block of cream cheese at Thanksgiving and Christmas, but when it’s just the two of us here, we do a plate of Ritz with smears of cream cheese and blobs of the jelly. That’s an excellent dinner sometimes. πŸ™‚

        • Buc-Ee’s also sells candied jalapenos that are delicious minced up and mixed in with cream cheese and served on crackers. πŸ™‚

  7. Isn’t amazing how something as simple as a basket can provide so much amazement and joy in kittens? My Henry is obsessed with the crinkling of plastic bags. Not as much fun when he decides to climb into the one you’re putting the litter box leavings into… but at least I’m able to laugh at him. πŸ˜‰

    Thanks for the weight update on the kittens. It’s fun to compare them to mine. Eloise is 1 lb 13 oz, Henry is 2 lb 12 oz, and Porter the Porker is 3 lb 5 oz (Penny is 9 lb 7 oz and that chunky Norman is bigger than all of them… so much for skinny old man). I’ll still have mine for a couple months. Our rescue waits for them to bigger and older before spaying/neutering and with our health issues I foresee a summer full of craziness.

    Awwww, it feels like the Cap’n and the General just got here!!! (whines and stamps foot) But as a military wife, I know full well that the soldiers keep moving along right up until retirement. Here’s hoping Petsmart is their last duty station and they have a long and honorable retirement with their forever families very, very soon.

    • It’s called Alamoon Watermark – I got it here. I bought the pro version – $30 – because I like it and I’ll be using it a lot, but if you look around, you can find programs that are free!

  8. I guess i’ll be stopping at Petsmart tonight to see Fluff and the Grumps even though I’ll be there tomorrow doing adoptions just in case they get adopted tonight!

  9. “Inspector Stompers not judging you….” HA HA HA HA HA HA Ha HA!!! That needs to be a poster in my house!

    Not that I want to vote anyone off of the banner up top but dang, Stompers will need a place of honor up there when he leaves for his new home!

    Oh, Cap’n Floof and Grumpypants, we hardly knew ye… Safe journey to your new home(s) sweeties!!

    • I laughed so hard at that one too. I want to share it with people, but I am sure it just wouldn’t be as funny if they didn’t know just how judgmental and demerit giving Inspector Stompers is..

      a poster of that would be perfect!!

      • CafePress makes posters, and you can set up a shop for as little as $6.95 a month. Robyn, I know you’ve already got your hands full with farming, kittening, chickening, and blogging, but I’ll bet that quite a few of your readers would be willing to buy Inspector Stompers posters, or other L&H swag!

        • Stompers truly is an orangey dude in every way, isn’t me? I’ve found that orange tabbies always have bucketloads of personality.

        • I actually have a CafePress account (well, a couple of them!) that don’t have a monthly fee associated with them. I’ll have to poke around and see what I can do. πŸ™‚

          • Oh pretty pleeeeease! If I’ve gone and looked at that picture once I’ve done it 20 times today!

    • I’ve been thinking that I should do a banner that includes fosters from this past year – I’ll have to think about it, and add it to my to-do list! πŸ™‚

  10. OH! I will miss Grumpy and THE Floof, but I am sure they will find wonderful homes with sunbeams and snacks and love.

  11. Wellington doesn’t look overly fond of having brother-butt thrust in his face.

    The Litterbox Guild! I made a funny! Whoever wants to use that has my blessing. β™₯

    • Dang it! If I had only heard this a couple weeks ago!! But I shall be singing the Litterbox Guild song as I clean the boxes around the house shortly. πŸ˜‰

    • I’ll confess to thinking about that one, but despite having three of my own and potentially taking in a fourth soon, I’d only have enough content if I fostered, which I’m not home enough to do.

  12. Aww I will miss all the Floof but as long as Agata stays for a while πŸ˜‰
    Good job with figuring out the watermarking. This new setup is less intrusive than the first time you tried.
    and I agree that Stompers needs a place of honor somewhere.

  13. so love inspector stompers is an awesome shot and caption, but I also love the “can’t watch this” one.

    and white eyeliner – woh.. stunning

  14. Robyn, I am relatively new to love&hisses and always read the past year’s posts… I thank you for Mia’s story. While it ended sadly, and especially her not feeling well up to the end, your telling of it was so beautifully written!!! You are good woman and these kitties know it! Keep it up… and thank you!

    • I can’t read it now. It is too hot to cry. I can’t even read the dedications over at IBKC’s fundraiser without tearing up.

    • Thank you, Leslie! I have to admit, I’m kind of amazed that I continued to foster after Mia’s passing, but it just made me more determined to do it. I’m also amazed how much Mia looked like Joe Bob!

  15. The Drama Stompers picture made me howl with laughter. It is perfect! Have you and Fred seen this YouTube parody called “I’m Farming and I Grow It”? I know y’all don’t have a farm per se, but with all those animals and crops you must surely feel like it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48H7zOQrX3U

  16. Ok, so after raising and finding homes for tons of kittens, I am looking for advice for the one I am adopting in 10 days. He is adorable, but very special.
    –severe over bite
    –malformed back legs
    –14 oz at 9 weeks old
    –2 of the four kittens had failure to thrive and passed in his litter. They were all bigger. His brother who is left is 39 ozs. And his brother was neutered yesterday and now having issues. No judging please, as these are not my rescues! There were 46 kittens and 25 momma cats in the rescue. All brown tabbies. So kittens may have been mixed up. However, he has been eating on his own for 4 weeks since rescuing. All are negative for leukemia and feline aids (all tested this week, mommas and kittens)
    –Has been treated for parasites
    –vet gave a clean bill of health
    –sloppey eye being treated

    he is just not growing πŸ™ His foster mom is leaving town for work, so I am taking over her two kittens and have applied to keep him. His brother has already been adopted, just waiting until 12 weeks. I am just trying to get ideas to help him, as the vets are trying vitamins and have a wait and see attitude.

    • Gail, I’m going to post this in Monday’s entry (and hopefully some other foster moms will come through the comments this weekend with suggestions), but I unfortunately don’t have any real advice for you. Is he interested in eating? How’s his energy level? Is he bright-eyed and interested in things around him? Is he able to get around okay despite his legs? How are his litterbox habits, is everything as it should be? Is he having diarrhea?

      • He is bright eyed and very snuggle. He likes to play with toys and his brother. He greets you at he door when you open it. He is 100% in the litter box and gets around ok on flat surfaces. He isn’t jumb or climb well. He has runny poops ight now due second round f deworming. I cn send pics if you think it would help. How bad is it that I want o cut my vacation short o snuggle him (and I really really miss my five!)

        • I would LOVE to see (and I know everyone else would, too) pictures of him! It actually sounds like he’s doing really well, I’m hoping that someone will have some good suggestions to help put the ounces on his little body. πŸ™‚

  17. About Gravy – my kitten had severe constipation. The vet recommended mineral oil. I put it in a bowl, and he lapped it up. Like he knew it would help. And it did help. If I ever did this again, I would put him in an easy to clean flooring room. Oily stuff and carpet did not go together.

  18. Would you consider maybe steroids for Spanky? My vet mentioned it for my old lady kitty when she was losing weight.