I came across the poem “This Cat” by Karen D. Mitchell on my online travels, and it touched me deeply. Karen is the publisher of the blog Neko Scribe, where she and her tortoiseshell cat Calpyso the Watch Cat share news and views related to animal welfare in their hometown of Indianapolis, Indiana, as well as across the nation and the world.
I’m republishing the poem with Karen’s permission.
steel woven in wool,
black wands flickering
in two full moons.
claws that tap bars
and paws that stretch
far, like a child’s hand
waiting for treats.Continue Reading
T’was the night after the adoption event,
And all through the store,
Not a creature was stirring, not even a stray cricket on the floor
The Center Coordinators were all snug in their beds
Thinking of ways to move adoptions ahead.
The cage cards were hung on the enclosures with care,
Each telling the story of the cats who were there.
Poor Fluffy, poor Mittens, Whiskers and Sprite
Abandoned and alone on this cold Post-Adoption night.
Each cat was nestled in a Maddie’s Blanket, and thought twice,
I wasn’t naughty, I really was nice.
Why was I left in a shelter,
Almost about to pay the price.
When Denis O’Connor rescues a three-week-old kitten from certain death during a snowstorm, little does he know how this tiny creature will change his life forever. Against all odds the kitten—whom he names Toby Jug—survives and turns out to be a wondrous Maine Coon Cat extraordinaire. Life with Toby is never dull, and Denis and Toby embark on a series of sometimes comical, sometimes poignant adventuresContinue Reading
Most cat guardians worry when their cats have to go under anesthesia. I’m certainly one of them. Even though I’ve assisted with all sorts of anesthetic procedures and surgeries in my years working in veterinary clinics, understanding how it all works, and what constitutes safe anesthetic practice, still doesn’t completely take the worry out of it.
Knowing what to expect when your cat has to undergo anesthesia, and knowing the right questions to ask at your veterinary clinic prior to the procedure so that you can be sure that your cat’s anesthesia will be done in the safest possible way, can help ease the worry factor.
The recently released AAHA anesthesia guidelines for dogs and cats (AAHA is the American Animal Hospital Association) cover the entire process from pre-anesthetic evaluation to recovery. Make sure that at a minimum, your vet adheres to these guidelines.
I love cats, and I love New York City, so I had no doubt that I would love Travels with George: New York, the second in David Stone and Deborah Julian’s Cat’s Eye Adventure series. I just wasn’t prepared for how much I loved it.
In the first book in the series, Travels with George: Paris, George, a much-loved indoor cat living in a New York City high-rise, stows away in his humans’ luggage as they get ready for a trip to France. Imagine his surprise, not to mention his humans’, when he finds himself in a hotel room in Paris, along with his younger cat friend Billy, who somehow found his way inside the luggage, too.
George and Billy know they’ll never get away with that kind of an adventure again, but they came to like being “out” for something other than a vet visit. One day, they hear their humans talk Continue Reading
Scrapbooking has gone to the cats! It’s a Cat’s Life is an interactive book that chronicles the life of your cat, from personality to behavior, background to medical history, memories of special times, and everything in between.
This beautifully designed book is organized in a three-ring binder, which includes pages to write about your personal journey with your cat. There are places to insert photos of your cat, list favorite foods and activities, and more. There are sections for cat sitters and veterinarians. The cover features a slot to place a favorite photo of your special cat. Think baby book, but for cats.
The book is narrated by Howie, The World’s Greatest Kitty (although I’m sure any of us would argue that our cats are the world’s greatest!), Continue Reading
When I thought about what to blog about for The Conscious Cat this time, I thought I’d talk about writing. You know, a very specific kind of “this is what I do, and this is how I do it” blog. And I meant to – I really meant to – only as I started to draft some kind of introduction –I got yelled at by my cat.
I’m not sure what I did exactly. It wasn’t food related, of that I’m sure. People who don’t live with cats – maybe people who don’t live with any animals at all – tend to think that all they care about, all they need from us, is food. Well, food and treats, and while that’s a large part of our role in their world, it isn’t the entirety. Because when Musetta – tuxedo cat who rules my roost – started in on me, her dish was full. No, I think it was that I’d gone out while she was napping.
You see, for all my talk about process, I’m having trouble starting my next book – the seventh in the Dulcie Schwartz series – and when I am at this stage of things, I tend to wander. Continue Reading
Even if our cats live into their late teens and sometimes early twenties, it’s just not long enough. The price we pay for sharing our lives with these wonderful companions is that all of us who considers our cats family members or best friends will sooner or later experience the pain of loss, and it can be as devastating as the loss of any loved one. Joelle Nielsen, a veterinary social worker at the Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, says she often compares the loss of a pet to the loss of a child or a close family member. Nielsen says the big difference between losing a pet, compared to losing a human, is that “much of society is not aware of the strength of the human-animal bond, so pet loss is often seen as ‘disenfranchised loss,’ meaning it is not socially recognized.”
Another significant difference is the matter of euthanasia. Deciding to end a pet’s pain and suffering is one of the most difficult choices pet owners ever have to make, and it can engender massive feelings of guilt and regret after the fact.
While there are some commonalities, grieving the loss of a pet is a unique experience for each individual. Factors that play into how the loss is handled Continue Reading