Does Stinkerbelle spend more time on the ground with the peasants now? How is she dealing with Tommy’s death? Did she ever spot Maxi and think it was Tommy?
Stinkerbelle’s not really spending any more time on the ground than before – she comes down to eat or use the litter box, might let Fred pet her ONCE, and then she’s back atop the kitchen cabinets. She’s our very own kitchen witch! Her behavior hasn’t changed as far as I can tell, she demands her morning snack along with everyone else, and glares down at us if we’re being annoying.
She hasn’t mistaken Maxi for Tommy in many years. She did once or twice when she was a kitten, but she learned pretty quickly that Maxi was not going to give up the cuddles. Of course, Maxi doesn’t come inside very much, either – she doesn’t like other cats at all except for Newt (who, really, she only tolerates), and so she prefers to hang out on the side stoop or in the garage. If it’s cold or rainy she’ll favor us with her presence very briefly before demanding to go back outside.
Does wee Badger need the Sugarbutt treatment perhaps?
I did try a sugar compress on Badger’s sore back end, and it didn’t really help. I used Desitin, which didn’t really help. Then Connie mentioned the idea of using coconut oil, and it actually does seem to have helped! It’s still a little red and sore looking, but not nearly as bad as it was this time last week. (I’ll do an update on the BeeBees and their back end issues down in the section where I post their pictures.)
Speaking of strays, a question for you Robyn (and your other readers)– when you have a kitty come around, how do you determine if it is just visiting or if it is looking for permanent residence? I ask because I believe that someone has abandoned their indoor/outdoor cat in my apartment complex (probably after moving away). I have affectionately named her Chalupa and she might be in heat (a feral male has been shadowing her). She is looking skinnier than normal and has extended her roaming range. She often comes by to longingly gaze at my kitties and their pampered life through the window. I am not looking for any new additions, but I do volunteer for a rescue organization that could find her a great home. I just don’t want to abduct someone’s cat. Does a note on a collar work? What do you write?
I can tell you that around here, if a cat shows up and is really hungry, hangs around a lot, and only takes a little while to warm up, they’re probably strays – though we do check with the neighbors, just to be safe.
I would put a note on her collar that simply says something like “Hi, this kitty has been coming around my house a lot. I want to make sure she has a home and is cared for – if she’s yours, can you let me know?” and include your preferred contact information. I’ve put notes on collars a few times in the past and never heard anything – though I did it once, and the cat never came around again, so I suspect his owners decided to keep him inside!
Abigail said: My folks, now retired, are both veterinarians. Neither worked with cats and neither much like them (I am the outlier in the family in several senses). Whenever I’d foster little babies, which wasn’t terribly often, my father would tell me that ‘everyone knew’ that bottle raised kittens grew up to be troubled cats as adults. He could never explain what the trouble was and how it was different than the type of trouble ALL adult cats are, and I never heard it from anyone other than him, but still. He disapproved of bottle raising kittens based on some old country vet folklore he couldn’t explain. I’d be interested in knowing if anyone else has ever heard this thing that everyone knows, and can provide more details on the particular type of trouble these cats grow up to display.
Maggie said: The only thing I have ever seen about bottle babies is the fact that our local shelter tries to foster them (ideally starting when they’re being bottle-fed but at least after weaning) in a house where there’s an adult cat, so they can learn how to be a cat.
I had a bottle baby years ago, and he was an only cat until he was about 1-1/2 (and the second cat was also a bottle baby, so he was no help). He was always a little goofy, and definitely preferred humans to other cats, but he wasn’t a problem at all–he was very good-natured and easy-going. The second bottle-baby was a special case, in that he was pretty obviously slightly brain-damaged (he was found at about 2 weeks old in a garbage bag in the dumpster of my apartment complex. The rest of his litter didn’t survive, and he almost didn’t make it himself), so I have no idea whether being bottle-fed had any effect on him. He was very sweet, but very skittish because everything confused him.
one cranky lady said: I can only speak from my experience, in that 1) I’ve never heard that bottle babies were more trouble as adults, and 2) the greatest cat my family ever had was bottle-raised before we adopted him. He was different, sure, but in good ways — he was a very calm, mellow, yet curious cat. Car trips didn’t phase him, visitors to the house were always objects of interest, and he had a charming habit of sitting with our elderly next-door neighbors on their porch every evening as they enjoyed the sunset. We took him to the vet without need of carrier or harness, and when someone in the family was sad or crying, he insisted on being near them, whereupon he would assume the kittyloaf position and purr like crazy. I don’t know if he was with other cats before he came to us, but I agree with what Maggie said about fostering bottle babies with other cats. I think that’s a good idea.
I’ve never heard that bottle-fed kittens are troubled; I’ll be interested to hear if anyone else has heard that!
I will say that I’ve only had one bottle baby (Maddy) who was a singleton, and I’d never do that again. Kittens very much need other kittens around as they grow, so they know how to relate to each other. If I ever end up with another singleton, I’ll find someone around their own age to join them ASAP.
Holly said: Okay, I looked and I knew your readers would want to know:
You must like the names Peter and Paul. You have fostered the following “Peter”‘s and “Paul”‘s:
Peter Brady=Brady Bunch
I will let someone else work the girls out. I don’t think Mary was used much but I think Lucy and Molly are possible #1 contenders.
Thanks, Holly! I DO like the names Peter and Paul! I wouldn’t have guessed that I’ve used them both so many times, though.
Mary was used at least twice – Maggie’s official name was Mary Margaret, but I never ever ever called her that (and then of course there was Mary from PP&M). I just love the name Maggie and it had been used before, so “Mary Margaret” was my workaround.
Zucchini, Pattypan, Calabash and Ambercup are all officially scheduled for their spays and neuter next Thursday! They’ll be 12 weeks that day, can you believe it?
I put a small litter box in the tub with these guys, and for the first day they ignored it. Then yesterday morning I was feeding Combo. He was eating just fine, then stopped eating and pulled his head away from the bottle, looked disgusted, and spit out three pieces of litter. So apparently he thinks he’s a hamster and was saving some extra litter for later. When I went in to feed them last night, one of them had peed in the litter box like a little 3 1/2 week old genius.
Poop talk below; skip to the next section if you’d rather not read it (it’s not graphic, but I know some of you would just rather not hear about it).
So, the diarrhea that Skinny Pete, Combo and Badger have been having – and for which I took Badger to the vet last week – has only improved to the point where they aren’t soiling their bedding in between feedings, so that’s good. But every single time I potty them, I get diarrhea, and a lot of it; and it stinks particularly bad (like rotten eggs). Yesterday marked a week they’d been on the medication, thus a recheck was in order. I dropped them off at the vet yesterday morning and had breakfast with friends. When I got back, they hadn’t finished up yet, so I waited. Basically, they’re loaded with something (the vet isn’t sure what), and we’re changing their medication, which will hopefully help. They’ll go back Tuesday for a recheck, and I’m hoping that by then I’ll be getting something OTHER than diarrhea from them!
As I mentioned earlier in the post, coconut oil on his bottom and at the base of his tail has helped alleviate the awful soreness Badger was suffering from. It’s still a little red, but not nearly as bad as it was, thankfully.
2014: “You’re INSANE!” says Ralph. “A BALL. Of all the crazy ideas!”
2013: She wubs the babies.
2012: He’s such a Magoo.
2011: No entry.
2010: No entry.
2009: “What you MEAN ‘no more belly rubs’?!”
2008: No entry.
2007: Look who’s back!
2006: She might have a ways to go in the brain department though – really, what can you expect from a one-month old? – because she’s not quite getting the whole “doorway” concept.
2005: No entry.