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Saturday, December 30, 2017

New Year feline wishes - and news

Dear fellow cats,
I was going to write a New Year Message, full of good hope, goodwill, and optimism. Instead, I have both good and bad news.
The good news is that at last the world will be able to read my words of wisdom. A book is coming out in February with the title 100 Ways to be More Like your Cat. Feline Wisdom for Happy Humans. Here at last is my attempt to enlighten the human, not the feline, race. I think all cats would agree that humans would be happier if they imitated us.
The bad news is that my name is not on it. In order to purrsuade humans to buy it, the publisher said, it must have a human name. So once again, my secretary's name is there on the cover, not mine. 
Purrsonally I am extremely upset by this. It is not the first time she has indulged in outright plagiarism of my ideas. But for the good of the human race, I had to accept this. 
I shall make her pay.... I am thinking of ways of getting my revenge.
Yours with very mixed feelings,
George.
 

Saturday, December 23, 2017

A Christmas Miracle

Dear George,
I’m a two years old kitten who got lost or has been abandoned – I don’t know what happened for sure! No one posted any flyers around the area where I was found living on the streets. All I know is that about two months ago some good people saw me in a parking lot and started feeding me. They would come every single night and feed me. Then as the weather was getting colder they decided to trap me and find me a home! Their prayers and wishes were to find me a forever home by Christmas! Well, their prayers and wishes came true! In last two weeks I’ve been trapped, taken to a vet clinic to be checked-up, lived temporary in two fosters home and I’ll be in my forever home by Christmas.
I’ve also learned that my new human is the best “cat mum” I could wish for! She’ll love me and care for me! She has already announced her family and friends about me coming home for Christmas! I’m a bit scared but I know that once I’ll be just with her I’ll be able to rest and relax! I promise I will love her back! George, I do now believe in miracles!
And, as young as I am …I now truly understand Christmas and the spirit of giving!
It’s not at all about giving gifts…it’s all about giving shelter, giving food, giving hope and above all…..giving love! That’s the spirit of Christmas!
I wish to all the kittens and their humans a Merry Christmas and I pray for all the cats in need to find their forever homes and loving humans!
Love to all
Kitty

Dear Kitty,
You have said it all.
But I would just add some quick advice to cats. Stay away from mistletoe and holly. They are poisonous. So are lilies and pointsetta (photo on the right).
Happy Christmas,
George.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Human kittens -- strange smells, weird noises. How to cope.


Dear George,
I didn’t write to you in quite some time so, please forgive me! I was busy moving from a flat to a big house! I wanted more space to move around and have more closets for my selected wardrobe so I put my “paw down” (as you can see in the photo) and asked my humans to find a better place.  But, I have learned the move came with a big surprise! 
Apparently I’ll welcome my human sister in the Spring! I’m talking a human kitten!
That’s big time competition to me! George, as much as I love to see my humans so excited about their kitten I don’t want to lose my Alpha status nor do I want to lose my privileges! So, when and how do I start training the human kitten? Before even being born is….too soon? Right after birth…should I start purring to her? George, help!
Mia

Dear Mia,
Disruptive noises and strange smells ... but we have to put up with them, as we cannot (so far) neuter humans.  It will help if your humans help you get used to the noise in advance by downloading this track and playing it very very quietly then slightly louder while you are eating something nice.  They should do this the month before the human kitten arrival so you can get used to the noise.
Your humans should also put in place the new human kitten care routine, before the human kitten arrives, so you can get used to it. That might mean differently timed meals, different places for bowls and litter trays and one room with a door that is shut.
You will find that before the arrival, your male human will come back from hospital smelling odd. If he is a sensible pet, he will bring back something smelling of the human kitten and allow you to investigate it. That way when the wriggling bundle of human fun arrives home, you will be used to its smell. This will help.
Finally, the wise thing to do with a new human kitten is never to investigate it unless your adult human pets are there in the room to protect you. Never share its bed or get too close to its jerky movements. Advice for your humans can be found here. Human kittens are, to be brutally frank, retarded. After eight weeks we can cope with life: it takes years for a human kitten to be sensible enough to train properly. 
Well, it is what it is - you will adapt and even come to love it.
Eventually..... Some Feliway Classic might help too.
Yours
George. 
PS. I am working hard on my new book which will come out in February. 

Friday, December 08, 2017

The Universal Language of Cats


Dear George,
I live in a big metropole and, I humbly must admit I live the life of the riches!
Really, I am a rescue who got the chance to live in a Four Season Hotel suite!
But, that’s not the reason I’m writing to you! The reason is that I’m afraid I’m losing my mind and I don’t know if it’s because of the luxurious life I’m living or if it’s because the electro-magnetic/microwave pollution of the big city or what! How am I manifesting my symptoms? Simply….I think there is a Tower of Babel ….in my head!You see…Italian is my mother tongue, my mummy speaks French and my daddy speaks English. They have friends who speak other languages. When we have company …everybody is talking to me in their mother tongue and I DO UNDERSTAND them all!
Isn’t that crazy? How can I understand all these foreign languages?
George, can you explain this to me before I completely lose my mind? Or is it that we are so advanced that cat language transcend any other languages?
Completely confused
Signore Bianco

Dear Signore Bianco,
Of course you understand what humans are saying - in so far as it is worth bothering about. The feline communication system is multi-faceted involving scent, vocalising and body language, far more advanced than the human one. Using those three senses we read our humans. (Admittedly like reading a book for very young kittens as most of their language is unnessary blah).
We read their body language much better than they read it. We read their tone of voice with an ability much better than theirs. We read the way their scent changes with their emotions and we read the family mixture of scent - hers, his, and mine.We can detect if they have been stroking another cat half an hour ago or which supermarket they went to (they smell different).
Human beings only understand vocalisations.  And because their other senses just don't work, they have to do an awful lot of vocalising in different languages. But we read what is behind or underneath the words: so we don't have to bother with the exact way they vocalise. Much of what they say is very boring anyway. Poor nose blind creatures!
Yours 
George.

Saturday, December 02, 2017

Seductive charm is the way to a forever home.

Dear George, 
I’m trying to find a forever home and I need your advice.
I won’t bother you with the details of my life but, you need to know that I’m in a foster home right now. This would be my second foster home and I would very much like this one to become my permanent home. I like my foster human too – he’s quiet! At times he seems to be grumpy but I know he’s not! He is kind and generous! I believe he had cats before because I can still smell them. He doesn’t think I’m a good fit in his life right now but I know he likes me! He travels summertime and he worries as he doesn’t know what to do with me! George, how can I tell him that I’m OK to go for a month or two in a cattery or one of his friends’ house if I’ll be with him for the remaining 10 -11 months of the year? I really like him! I’m happy here! 
With thanks,
Petrushka

Dear Petrushka,
Foster homes can become forever homes, if a cat plays her cards right! But be careful what you wish for. If he really is away from home for several weeks, you might not enjoy being in a cattery for that length of time. Of course, if there is a partner or a best friend who could help out by boarding you, that would be great. Many cats have two homes - an official one and the one down the street where the people give him a second breakfast.
To turn a temporary home into a permanent one requires you to exercise all your charms. Purr at him frequently. Roll on your back and when he tickles your tummy, do not scratch (always tempting, I admit). Practice little loving looks with your head on one side. Jump on his lap and knead - gently.
Greet him with your tail up when he comes home from work. Watch TV with him. Play with his newspaper. Sleep on the bed with him purring regularly and quietly to help him go off to sleep. You know the score. Seduce him with charm. Make him love you. It's what we do when we want something.
Yours 
George.

Help for cats whose humans show behaviour problems.

This blog is devoted to the study of human behaviour. We cats, who live with this sometimes unpredictable and always feeble minded species, can benefit from seeing their behaviour in its proper scientific context. The study of feline dilemmas, training problems, and difficulties with humans, can only benefit all of us. All of us train our humans - to buy the right food, for instance, but many of us do not have knowledge of how to improve our training methods. The human species is obviously not as intelligent as the cat, but nevertheless can learn quite a lot - if properly managed. Topics of interest include the use of claw and order, purring as a human reward, rubbing your human up the right way, when to bite, spraying as a method of making our wishes known, ignoring the human, human harassment, human inattention and sheer human stupidity. I welcome your questions. Photos can be sent via my secretary's website, www.celiahaddon.com This blog has been chosen as one of the top 50 feline blogs by Online VetTechprogramms.org