February 3rd 2013 12:34 pm
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Splat Cat must be reading her diary and decided to make a liar out of me today and show me that she's no pushover and that I shouldn't underestimate her ability to stand up for herself.
This morning Splat Cat was laying beside me and Uno was laying on my lap when Uno arose, came up and tried to get between Splats and me. Splats gave an annoyed meow and swatted at Uno who jumped back in surprise and fell off the bed. Splats almost never takes a stand with other cats this way. Uno was totally unprepared for Splats' unusual action and I'm sure Uno's jumping back was an instinctive reflex action.
After Uno fell off the bed, Splats ignored her and started to creep up toward my neck to do her hugging thing. Uno jumped up and playfully grabbed Splats tail. Splats gave Uno a dirty look, then turned back toward me and proceeded to wrap her forepaws around my neck. Uno again jumped up and grabbed Splats tail. This time Splats simply swished her tail out of Uno's way. Uno jumped up on the bed and again went after Splats tail. This time and twice more Splats totally ignored Uno. Then Splats very casually turned around, put her head down, and appeared to clumsily half jump, half fall off the bed. Although Splats clumsy move appeared innocent enough, it had a definite purpose. As Splats put her head down and started her clumsy looking half jump half fall movement, her head pushed against Uno's side and Splats carried Uno off the bed to the floor with her.
As Splats landed, she casually walked off, totally ignoring Uno while still maintaining an attitude of feigned innocence as if she had fallen off the bed by accident.
January 30th 2013 5:46 pm
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The average car weighs in at about 3,000 to 4,500 pounds for a compact car, 4,500 to 5,500 pounds for a mid size car or a sedan, light trucks, vans, and suv's can weigh between 5,000 to 7,000 pounds, and full size trucks between 7,500 to 12,000 pounds. A loaded 18-wheeler weighs up to 80,000 pounds.
Splat Cat weighs a mere 5 pounds. Her head was no match at all for whatever vehicle it was that hit her.
Splat Cat was an unnamed cat living at my best friend's farm where she was a zealous and very proficient mouser. A busy two-lane road runs past the farm and most of the time all sorts of vehicles race up and down that road at speeds greater than the posted 50 mph limit.
It was chilly and raining that day when the tenant who lived at the farm came home after being gone for several hours, and found Splat Cat laying in the road. Nobody knows when she was hit, what kind of vehicle hit her, or how fast they were going. Seeing that Splat Cat was still alive, the tenant got a warm towel out of the dryer, wrapped Splat Cat in it, took her into the house to warm her up, and promptly called my best friend to come get her. Splat Cat was still conscious when the tenant picked her up and took her inside.
My best friend came and quickly evaluated Splat Cat who was still somewhat conscious but also somewhat "out of it", then she took Splat cat with her. Although Splat Cat had no external injuries and no injuries to any other part of her body, she obviously had sustained head trauma, concussion, and brain damage. She was mostly "out of it", she couldn't get up, she had no control of her legs-they would just flop around, she couldn't eat, all she wanted to do was curl up in a ball and lay there. Subcutaneous fluids had to be given to hydrate her but it took putting food into her mouth by hand to get nutrition into her. Gradually Splat Cat healed and when she was well enough to be able to eat and drink on her own, get around and function reasonably well, Splat Cat went home with me to become a permanent house cat.
If you look at Splat Cat now (and hopefully Catster photos are fixed soon so you can look at her), you'd never know anything had ever happened to Splat Cat. However, she isn't the most coordinated cat I've ever seen. But whether any of her occasional clumsiness is due to her accident or whether she just happens to be an individual that's somewhat clumsy, I don't know. She will do such things as go to leap up on a desk, not quite make it, and slide right off to land in a somewhat embarrassed heap on the floor. In spite of this tendency to be clumsy, Splats really likes heights. When she's not watching TV, she can usually be found on a top shelf somewhere.
Splat Cat is a torbie and white, a term used to describe a calico tabby. She is a mackerel (striped) pattern torbie and white with more red in her coat than one usually sees in calico or torbie and white cats. She's medium sized in appearance and in excellent condition but when you pick her up, it's like picking up a feather, she's so lightweight. The only way I know to really describe the difference between her and most other cats is to say she's less dense. Most cats when you pick them up, feel dense and solid. An example to try to convey the difference between her and other cats might be to say picking her up is like picking up a bag of potato chips, full but light in weight compared to other cats feeling like picking up an equal sized, equally full bag of cat food.
Splat Cat is one of the quietest most mellow placid cats I've ever seen. She rarely ever meows. She rarely ever gets into any kind of argument with any of the other cats. She does enjoy playing with the other cats although she doesn't like to play stalking each other, chasing each other, wrestling kinds of games. She prefers to play in quiet, mellow, less active ways. Her favorite games are playing with another cat with the Turbo Scratcher or another toy with balls in it that move around on tracks, I don't offhand remember the name of this second toy. Splats and certain other cats will bat the ball back and forth on the track like two humans play pingpong.
Sometimes Splatters will play with the other cats who are playing in the cube or the tube although usually the cats who play in the cube or the tube get too boisterous for her with their wildly energetic racing in and out and around and play pounncing on each other, attacking each other, wrestling etc that usually accompanies tube or cube play. The cube is a fabric cube with some kind of lightweight frame that has somewhat lost its cube shape from heavy kitty use. The tube is a long fabric tube with a lightweight frame that holds it in shape that I once picked up at a Goodwill store and the more active energetic cats love playing in it.
Splat Cat may be mellow, quiet, and less active than most of the other cats but don't get a mouse anywhere near her. She's just as avid a mouser now as she was before her accident. Splat Cat will make the utmost effort to get that mouse. If you have an aquarium tank with a locking lid with a mouse in it and she sees it, Splat Cat will manage to rip the lid off to go after the mouse. If a fly or a moth gets into the house, she will be one of the first cats to go after it. Luckily, Splats has no interest in bothering my cockatiel, my blue front Amazon parrot, the chinchilla or any of my other creatures.
Splat Cat's favorite activity is watching TV. She will perch on the desk near the TV and sit there for hours watching whatever's on TV. She does seem to prefer cartoons though. Occasionally she will watch my desktop or latop monitor and go after the cursor on the screen. Although I have had and still have other cats who like to watch TV, I've never seen a cat who likes to spend as much time watching TV as Splats does.
Splat Cat's favorite treat (which she doesn't get very much of because they're not a healthy food for a cat) is potato chips, especially barbecue chips. If you open up a bag of potato chips, Splat Cat will be right there wanting one. She never meows or tries to grab for one, she will just sit or stand patiently and look at you and the potato chip bag, clearly and silently communicating that she wants one. She doesn't want to take food from my hand, she wants me to set it down in front of her. Some of my other cats are like this too, when I offer them treats from my hand they will nose it around and act like they're afraid they might hurt me by trying to pick it up out of my hand. If I set the treat on my lap, these cats will reach out a paw and try to gently knock the treat off onto the bed or the floor and then they will pick it up and carry it to a chosen spot to eat it. As soon as I set the treat down on the bed or the corner of the chair I'm sitting on or the floor, the cat will immediately pick it up. It's interesting to watch Splatters (Splat Cat gets called Splatters and Splats too) very gently pick up a potato chip from the bed, chair, sofa, or floor and carry it away to her chosen spot for eating it. After she's eaten it, she will come back and again silently and patiently beg for another one. She also likes popcorn. I don't give the cats very many of these kinds of less than healthy junk food treats. In fact because I don't want to share very many of these kinds of junk foods with the cats, I eat less of them myself than I would otherwise.
When I sleep on my side, Splatters will come and perch on my side and sleep in the hollow on my side where my waist is. She's the only cat I ever have had who likes to sleep on my side. If I start to roll over and change sides, she will get out of the way, wait for me to settle down and then she'll settle herself down and sleep on my other side. She never sleeps on me if I'm sleeping on my back, she only sleeps on me if I'm sleeping on my side.
One of Splat Cat's most endearing traits is her "hugging". I've never seen another cat yet that hugs anywhere to the extent Splat Cat does. If I'm lying on the bed or sitting in a chair she will come up and wrap her forepaws tightly around my neck, nuzzle her head against my face or under my chin and literally give me a hug. Usually she will keep right on hugging me until I have to stop the hug myself by gently prying her forepaws loose and setting her down. If I pick her up, she will almost always immediately try to work her way up to wrap her forepaws around my neck and hug me. She will also do this to other people she knows well.
Splat Cat was one of a small minority of cats who are lucky enough to survive an encounter with a vehicle. The vast majority of cats that get hit by a vehicle are killed outright. Whenever I see a dead cat on the road I feel bad for the cat and angry that the owner didn't keep their cat inside where it's safe. Vehicles aren't the only danger to an outdoor cat either. Coyotes are a predator who have adapted to living in virtually anyplace including cities (for example, it's estimated that up to 2,000 coyotes live in Chicago). Their population is growing unchecked because they have no natural enemies, nothing except maybe disease outbreaks to keep them under control. Coyotes prey on and eat livestock, cats and small dogs and have been known to kill off almost all the cats in a feral cat colony then continue to eat the cat food placed daily at the colony site by people who were maintaining the colony. (source-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coyote) Coyotes have been known to stalk, attack, carry off, and kill small children and even attack adult humans. Foxes, birds of prey and alligators will attack, kill, and eat cats. Dogs will kill cats. Raccoons will kill cats, if a cat happens to get in the raccoon's way. Malicious humans will torture and kill cats. Poisoning is another danger to outdoor cats. Even if a cat doesn't actually directly contact or ingest a poison, it can be secondarily poisoned by eating poisoned prey. Cats can also encounter all sorts of poisonous substances in garages etc, get a poisonous substance on its coat or paws, and ingest the poison while trying to clean it off. Antifreeze is a common very deadly poison that tastes good to cats and dogs. A car with a leaking radiator or a spill or other puddle of antifreeze, an open container of antifreeze, all are common sources of antifreeze poisoning.
Anyone who keeps their cats outdoors or lets their dogs run loose should be at an emergency vet clinic when someone brings in their cat or dog that came home poisoned, is in danger of dying from the poison, the owner of course has no idea where the pet has been or what kind of poison the pet ingested, but before the vet can do anything to antidote the poison and try to save the pet's life, the vet has to first know what KIND of poison the animal ingested and precious time is lost as the vet tries to figure out what kind of poison the animal ingested so he or she can administer the proper antidote. Outdoor cats also can get trapped in garages and sheds where they may die without anyone ever knowing the cats were in there. Outdoor cats can crawl up into car engines looking for warmth and end up being severely mutilated or killed by the fan belt when someone starts the car. These are only a small fraction of the many many things that can sicken, injure, or kill an outdoor cat, not to even mention diseases and parasites that a cat can pick up from wildlife and other outdoor pets. The lifespan of the average outdoor cat is considered by most sources to be 5 years or less and 90% of kittens born outdoors do not survive their first year.
An outdoor cat will adjust to being an indoor cat. In fact, some feral/semi-feral cats I managed to socialize became indoor cats and once they had adjusted to indoor life, like most indoor cats they felt safe and secure inside and wanted nothing at all to do with the outdoors. I've had a couple of cats who would try to "run doors" get out when I opened a door. If you have a cat who wants to try to run doors, Carry a squirt bottle of water or a can of canned air or air freshener and be ready to squirt or hiss the cat the instant you start to open the door and if the cat is anywhere near the door, squirt him or spray the canned air or air freshener at the cat (not on the cat- unlike water, with canned air and air freshener it's the hissing sound that disciplines the cat). It usually only takes a few times and then the cat won't want to be anywhere near the door when you open it.
If you care about your cat(s), keep them safely indoors where they will be much healthier and live much longer happier lives. And you'll have the peace of mind of always knowing your cat is indoors and safe.
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