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Saturday, May 20, 2017

SOS! Vet on the horizon! Going Incatnito!

Dear George,
I need urgently few suggestions on how to go incatnito! Yes, you heard me right: “in-cat-nito” in order to avoid getting to my scheduled visit to the vet. Like any other cat I purr-foundly detest these visits so I try to hide but my humans somehow manage to find me every time. So, for now I thought going incatnito around the house ….maybe something like a “faux cat” that look like a piece of décor? Or maybe I should go as a dog or bunny or something in disguise? Ugh! So much trouble but I do not want to go to the vet! That’s it! Please take a look at the photo attached and tell me if I look like a piece of décor!
Any other suggestions on how to avoid the trip to the vet are welcome!
Yours…..in disguise
Leo

Dear Leo,
This isn't good enough. You do not look like a pineapple. Nor are you a convincing china cat!  Far too elegant. Further in-cat-nito efforts are required. I recommend the following places to hide.
  • Under the bed. Humans do look there but if you squeeze further enough in at an odd angle they may miss you.
  • Under the cooker if there is a gap.
  • Between the washing machine and the drying machine in the utility room. You need a cap but not a big one.
  • On a chair, which has been pushed under a table. This is a simple place to hide that many humans miss.
  • Underneath the bedclothes. Better hope that your human doesn't sit on you by mistake.
  • Back of the wardrobe behind some large boots.
  • Top of the wardrobe - if your human has never seen you there before. Won't work if they already know you chill out there.
Yours
George

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Déjà vu roast chicken….even if …it never happened?


Dear George, 
I know we have a great 6th sense and we can feel and see energy that humans can’t perceive with their naked eyes but, I’ve never realized that in fact I could be so, so, soooo psychic! I mean how else would you explain my experience? You see….I had a déjà vu of an event that never happened. What would you make of it? But, here is my story! Last night I’ve seen my human placing a nice chunk of roasted chicken (leftover from their dinner) on the kitchen table. You see, I’ve never been interested in sharing dinner with my humans and so, I never did! But for whatever reasons when I’ve seen that roasted chicken on the table ….I had a déjà vu ….of the future if I may said so!  I’ve literally seen a good chunk of it “disappearing” into my mouth and down into my belly.
I HAVE SEEN IT!  So, when my human turned around and said “now, be a good boy”…I just ignored her as I knew what’s going to happen next! 
So, George….help me understand! Do I have paranormal abilities? Is it because I spend so much time in nature (as you can see in the photo attached).
Beau

Dear Beau,
Treasure that chicken deja vu (my paws can't do the accents!). It WILL happen and in my opinion, the sooner the better. Check out the kitchen table regularly. I always do. And you will be surprised what you find there, particularly if your human is absent-minded or just disappears for a moment to check her computer.
I have developed the psychic gaze. I use this to convey to my human that I would like a bit of chicken (or similar goody). Silent.  Intense. Yet conveying by 6th sense what I want her to understand. Humans, dumb creatures though they are, have more of a 6th sense than they know.
I also do the psychic garden trick. When she is out there, I just appear from nowhere. Silently, of course. So one moment she thinks I am not there: and then in a few seconds she sees me. This is a psychic trick that almost all cats play. I love doing it. Those hosta plants on your right would make it easy for you.
Yours
George.
PS. The thought of that roast chicken has made my mouth water, so I am just going to check out the kitchen table... you never know.

Friday, May 05, 2017

Look what the sun has done to me.... its' dangerous.

Dear George,
I am writing to warn other cats. I lived with a family that couldn't afford vet bills. My ears got crusty and they took no notice till the crustiness was very bad.
Then they chucked me out to fend for myself although I was 16 years old. Luckily Cats Protection found me, took me in, fed me, and took me to a vet.
It was bad news - skin cancer. So they had to amputate my ears. Now I am recovered from the operation. The ears feel a bit odd and I can't swivel them so well as I used to. Otherwise I am fine.
Be warned. Cats like me that are white or have white faces, must stay out of the sunlight as much as possible during summer. 
I have survived so cancer wasn't a death sentence. Being chucked out on the street nearly was....
Yours
Pearl.

Dear Pearl,
Thank you for the warning.  Readers, please remember this and get your humans to understand that white ears and faces are at risk of skin cancer. Whatever your colour, even black, if your face is white you are vulnerable. Any signs of scabbiness or crustiness on the ear means a visit to the vet (yes, I loathe vets too) as soon as possible.
Good human servants will keep you in during the full sunlight and buy your special cat sun screen.
But some humans are disgusting! They just threw Pearl out into the street when she got old and needed veterinary care. Warning to other cats - if you have that sort of human as a pet, leave home and find yourself a better one as soon as possible.
Yours indignantly
George.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Vacuum cleaners, hair blowers..... we need a safe haven.

Dear George, 
I’m a very, very social kitty! Very friendly (even if I don’t look so at times).
The reason I’m so friendly is because we, the cats, are fearless and sometimes
people or dogs or other animals feel really intimidated and are afraid of us; they can see “the lion” in us! I would say we are as courageous as we are curious! So, I’m trying to “meet and greet” different things and different people. 
But there are these two things I don’t know how to make friends with: the vacuum cleaner and that “thing” my mom uses to blow dry her hair!  Yes, I tried to get close to them but they would just blow hot air back to me! I tried to rub my head against them but they make this terrible, scary noise (which gets louder closer I get)! I tried to meow to them but none meowed back to me! Guess they are not speaking “things”! So, since I have to live in the same house with these two, I need your advice - how I can befriend them? 
Even if I summon the Lion in me ….that lion falls flat as no real lion has ever experienced a vacuum cleaner or blow dryer in the jungle!  So, what do I do now?
The roaring kitty 
Angelica

Dear Angelica,
Summon your pride, congratulate yourself on your beauty,  and remind yourself that these unspeakable devices are beneath your notice. We all hate them. When I see the vacuum cleaner come out of the cupboard or hear the hair dryer being switched on, I make myself scarce. Either I leave the house altogether or find my own safe haven.
What is your safe haven? Every cat needs a safe haven. Mine is on top of a wardrobe in the spare bedroom. It's high up, admittedly a bit dusty, but away from human interference. For some of us it's under the bed: others go and sit in a garden shed: or find a hiding place with the clean clothes inside the airing cupboard.
Humans should never ever disturb us while we are there. There are thoughtless humans that pull us out from under the bed, or harass us while we are on the top of the wardrobe. They should be trained to leave us alone for as long as we need to stay there.
Regaining our composure may take a little time.... But when we feel serene again we can stroll back into our humans' life.
Yours 
George.
PS. One of the compensations for becoming deaf in old age is that these devices become less scary.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Of human idiosyncrasy - hairless and whiskerless by choice!

Dear George
I know you are one of the best human behaviorist and I need your guidance in understanding humans! I’m not sure if you wrote any books on the subject but, definitely you should as your advice, I’m sure, will be appreciated by other felines as well. But, here is the story and the reason why I need your help! A while back I have adopted this family of fine, fun people. Of course I got engaged in their daily activities! For example; with the human kitten I started listening to music and watching movies! With my human daddy I started watching games; he’s all into sports and I found this one game as being very, very entertaining – few men divided into two groups- one man hits a little ball with a bat and another one is supposed to catch it. They usually miss and the two of them run like crazy in circles. That makes me laugh my head off as I can beat them and catch that ball in an instant! Yes, I like this game. But nothing compare to my time with my human mommy! You see, she’s a make-up artist and we watch together TV programs about beauty and beauty trends, etc. Well, here is where I have a problem understanding humans. I mean what can be more beautiful than big, bushy whiskers? Right? Well, not quite so based on their opinion! I’ve watched on TV females waxing their whiskers! Ah! such a pity as there were some great opportunities! I’ve watched some of them waxing their legs! Why would they do such think?
After that their legs look like chicken legs! Ugh! When I look at my sisters in the feline world and see them fluffy, with big whiskers and lots of hair I think nothing can be more beautiful than that!  So, why would a woman shave her legs or shave her eye brows just to have them draw with a pencil?
That’s crazy! I’ve even seen men growing big whiskers but shaving their heads! Why? What’s wrong with humans?
More than amazed and totally perplexed 
Pepe

Dear Pepe
I share your amazement at these strange humans; they are as weird as naked mole rats! I began by being sorry for them and their inability to grow fur, except in odd places and on the top of their heads. Then I saw the males shaving their whisker pads and their female shaving hair under their armpits.
It dawned. They enjoy being hairless. They choose to be that way, poor deluded creatures. Mind you, their whiskers do not work like ours do: they can't move them forward and back or use them as an extra sensory tool. Still, why shave them off?
Now there is a human trend to shave the whole head. You just might be able to change your human's mind by climbing to the back of the sofa and giving him a vigorous grooming on his bare pate. But it probably won't work, as humans are difficult to train out of some of their weird behaviour.
We just have to content ourselves by laughing at these silly dumb animals.
George. 

Friday, April 14, 2017

Can binkying Easter bunnies train humans? No but they taste good.

Dear George,
With Easter fast approaching I have a very simple question: why do bunnies get all the attention at Easter time? Why are they called “The Easter Bunnies”?
They are not Easter gifts and, definitely they shouldn’t be! They require a lot more attention than us - they are needy …we are independent!
I know from my experience that humans can be very silly and dress us up for Christmas but never for Easter.
Why is that? Do they purr when happy? Do they train their humans helping them evolved to a higher level? I don’t think so – I’ve never seen a bunny training a human! And yet, I’ve just heard mine saying: Oh! I LOVE a “Binky Bunny”
WHAT on Earth is a binky bunny? I sure hope I won’t get company for Easter! 
George, why the fuss about bunnies?
Happy Easter to all cats and their humble servants
Foxy 

Dear Foxy,
This Easter thing confuses me too. I love bunnies....to hunt and eat. Yet there is this whole human thing whereby they do rabbit models in chocolate and eat those instead. And they pretend that rabbits lay Easter eggs (also chocolate). Really, these humans are odd.
Do rabbits train humans?  I don't think they can: too busy eating hay, swallowing their caecotrophs from their bottoms, and trying to get out of those horrible little hutches they live in. Rabbits are fast food not just for cats but foxes, coyotes, stoats and even weasels. If they didn't taste so good, I would be sorry for them.
My human has a completely different attitude. She hangs out on the local common trying to photograph or video them here. Binkying happens when a rabbit literally jumps for joy. She didn't manage to catch that and the camera jumps when she is stung by yet another horsefly. If I'd been there I wouldn't have been videoing. I would have been stalking them.
Happy Easter. Don't be tempted by chocolate. It's poisonous for cat.
Yours
George.  
PS. Some humans do dress up. Here is one. Stupid human. I wouldn't let anybody dress me up as a rabbit. Too humiliating. 

Saturday, April 08, 2017

Why are these cats pressing a bell? And who's in control?

Dear George,
I’ve been a long time follower of your blog but being very shy by nature I never got the courage to write or post a comment. Lately, as I start coming out of my shell I kind of see the world in a different light – not only more colorful but more playful as well! My humans are more playful and quite happy to entertain me! But what troubles me is one video they keep watching again and again and then…they try to copycat it. Here is the link to this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Clm826hHxoA  George, please watch it and tell me ….is it just human silliness or what is it that people enjoy so much that they keep bribing us with treats? What exactly is the purpose? I’ve seen videos with Celia apparently training Toby and Tommy (here and here)! Why? Can you explain this to me?
I don’t get it!
Gratefully yours
Princess

Dear Princess,
They only think they are training us. We are training them. This video shows two cats proceeding to a higher level of training. By doing something silly like pressing the bells, they have trained their humans to give them treats. How good is that? Humans think they are training us: we know we are training them.
Most humans cannot be trained to this level. They are too dumb. They simply cannot credit what we cats can do and so they don't even try to respond. They just give us treats for nothing.... but it is sometimes more fun to do something funny to get a treat. The easiest silly-thing-to-do-for-food is to sit up on your hind legs.  Do this near a meal and there is a very good chance indeed you will get something tasty from the table!
From there it is a short step to doing all kinds of antics that will result of food. Try it. It's good food fun, particularly for indoor cats.
Yours
George 

Saturday, April 01, 2017

Microchipping - what's the use and why can't we microchip our humans?

Dear George,
I'm Ricardo and Bubbles is my twin brother! Look at the photo attached! Bet you can't tell us apart! No one can; not even our humans!
And what's most exciting about us is that we do everything together -like really good brothers often do-  we cuddle together, we hug while sleeping, we eat together. We are inseparable. I know it's rare in the feline's world but that's what we do.
George, I'm writing to you because I have a question and nobody else to ask! I heard my humans talking about micro chipping us!
I don't understand why? We are indoor cats; what is the chance to "go missing"? None!
Then, why am I supposed to suffer an "open skin" surgery? Who will benefit from it? The vet? putting more money in his pocket?
My humans? Finally getting a easy way to tell us apart? Who? Cause I don't see any benefit to me or Bubbles.
Oh! Yes! I've heard about that "run away" cat from California who ended-up in a shelter in Canada!
But, let's be serious! Do we look like the type to gang-up with truck drivers and have an escapade?
I don't think so! Then.....why?
Yours .....quite confused
Ricardo

Dear Ricardo,
There are many ways a cat might get lost . You might jump or fall out of an open window: the cat carrier might break open as you are being taken into the vet surgery: you might just sneak out into the road as your humans open the door to leave for work: you could be cat-napped by a burglar: or just let roam by a negligent cat sitter or even a negligent cattery owner. I have heard of all these accidents. Without microchipping, your human pets might never be re-united with you. 
I have been thinking of how I could microchip my humans. It would be useful for when they desert me for a"holiday." They could be found and returned to me early.
Yours 
George,
Interesting that you look so alike. Most litters of kittens have more than one father, so often kittens don't look at all alike. We cats are sensible. We don't do jealous. We queue up for a chance to mate without any inter-male violence! So unlike humans.


Wednesday, March 22, 2017

I'm handsome and affectionate - so why can't I find a home?

Dear George,
My name is Chilli - but I am gentle not peppery. I'm loving. I'm handsome with wonderful white whiskers but here I am stuck in a cattery without a human pet. 
Can you give me any advice on how to get out of here.  And how to purrsuade a human to be adopted.
I want to get back into the real world again.
Yours 
Chilli.

Dear Chilli,
The first step is to get noticed. As people pass your pen, you must make them stop to take a look at you. This requires you either to walk to the front of the pen and miaow. Or  if you are sitting on a ledge nearer human eyesight (which is uncomfortably high) as well as the miaow you must do something unusual. Sitting back on your haunches might work. Or better still standing up on your hind legs.  Putting a paw to your eye, as if wiping off a tear, might also work.
Once you get their attention, you can begin purr very loudly indeed. You already have your tail in the correct tail-up position - the position which tells them that you like them. If you are near the wire of the pen, go right up to it and rub. 
If possible roll over and expose your tummy to them, always giving them eye contact at the same time. 
Miaow some more. And some more. In between the purring. Humans do a lot of vocalisation so this is likely to appeal to them.
Yours cheerfully
George

Saturday, March 18, 2017

I’m my Mama’s boy! How to keep it that way.

Dear George, 
Yes, I’m my Mama’s boy and it feels sooooo good (as you can see in the picture).
But, I’m in a fierce competition with my brother Rocky; not that Rocky cares, not even for a faint second, who in fact is the mama’s boy! He just wants to annoy me! And he does! Rocky is such a mischievous cat! I know our Mom loves us both but I was her first rescue! I was her first “fur baby”! So, in the name of my “rescue right” I expect to be recognised as my Mama’s boy and I want everybody else in our household to acknowledge it! George, what do I need to do to maintain my Status Quo?
Any tips or tricks?
Cheers,
Stanley

Dear Stanley,
That is a cute pose - tongue out, paws up, and tummy exposed. Few humans could resist that one! It feeds into their innate maternal instinct for cradling.
Purr loudly and purr often. They love to listen to purring. It soothes and pleases them. Miaow in moderation. The frequent and intense miaowing made by Siamese is not to every human's liking. So use miaows less frequently than purrs. But they still work well to get attention. High pitched is better than low sounding. Run a few tests. Do your humans like one long-lasting miaows or several short ones?
Tactile signals are cute too. While your human is lying in bed rub your cheek against hers. That's a no brainer! A gentle purr at the same time will seem even cuter. Rubbing against the legs and arms is fine too. Slow blinking is another great sign of affection too. And don't forget the slow little paw pat on the face as a wake-up call (claws firmly retracted for this one).
A little gentle play with whatever toy is around will please them too. Show off your graceful pouncing. It is our cute looks that seem to turn them on. Why else have cats taken over the internet, a visual medium if ever there was one. Charm never fails.
Do all this, and you keep Rocky into second place without  doubt. 
Yours admiringly
George.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

The SNIP....why do we have it and why don't humans?

Dear George,

I have been rescued few days ago and my new humans instead of taking me to my forever home they took me to a place called “clinic” where I was given a shot and there I went dreaming. When I woke up I was wearing this terrible thing around my head (as you can see in the photo) and didn’t understand why. I meowed them asking what’s going on? What happened to me? Are they going to harm me? They laughed and said “No, baby, we will never harm you! We adopted you because we love you so much”.
Then, they went on saying that “this is snip month” and it’s only going to benefit me! Well, as much as their assurance is comforting to some degree …I feel I’m missing some “parts” of me now. Quite perplexing as I still don’t see how all this is going to benefit me?
If March is “the snip month” ....do the human males get snipped as well? Is this snipping
thing going to benefit them too? Uh! George, I’m too young to understand all this!  
Can you explain it to me, please?
Very curious,
Misha

Dear Misha, 
The same thing happened to me. I lead a celibate life of my own choice due to surgical alteration at an early age. It's a calm life without fights (with the risk of catching FIV), without roaming in search of sex (with the risk of a traffic accident) without urine spraying (which keeps my human happy). Even feral cats are healthier after neutering and spaying.
But one thing troubles me. If we are happier after this, why don't humans practice it worldwide on themselves? Surely their own lives would benefit. Human overpopulation would fall, the natural world would flourish better with fewer humans. Men would get into fewer fights and women would not be exhausted or even killed by repeated child bearing. We need a worldwide campaign to neuter and spay humans!
They call us selfish but if you want to find a selfish species you only have to look at Homo so-called sapiens. They blame us for killing wildlife, but who has been slaughtering elephants, big cats, and ruining the habitat for wildlife. Not us.
Yours indignantly
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