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Cats of the Farm: The Pride Goes On

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    oh great, now we have 3 more characters to follow. where were they born, do you know? Had you been feeding the mama?

    thanks for being the good samaritan and taking them in. I foresee needing an addition to the outside shelter, or will they be indoor kitties?
    "There is no fundamental difference between man and animals in their ability to feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery." - Charles Darwin

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      Original Poster

      The amigos are 5 weeks roughly and a thin 5 weeks at that. Not good but could worse. They have fleas but are too small to treat. He wormed all three with a gentle wormer. There are better ones, but they couldn't tolerate those. Too small for shots. Mainly they just need to eat at the moment. The black is a male, the calico and tortie female.

      And I might have a theme to explore for a name for the black. Toward the end of the appointment, the vet was talking to me. The kittens, who didn’t like being wormed, went back in the carrier. I wasn’t sure the vet was totally done with them, so I didn’t shut the door yet, but I was blocking it with my hands spread out, one on top of the other, because the kittens had been a little bit of a three-ring circus so far, going every which way and challenging me, assistant, and vet to keep them from falling off the table. Anyway, I had a double hand vertical obstacle across the door. Just a little gap at the top. Suddenly, as the vet was talking, the black jumped out through that little top gap, neatly clearing both of my hands. The vet barely caught the fly ball (fly kitten?) as he erupted. We were all impressed at how he lined up and took that shot, and he did clear it. It reminded me of a cross-country obstacle, those where you jump through a window or something with a top bar.

      So now I need to think up true black eventers. Maybe there’s a name in there that sounds right for him. Worth trying them out on him, at least.

      The tortie even at the vet was the hardest to get hold of and the spookiest. The calico has some spirit in her, too. They are definitely more active today; they drank an entire cereal bowl of water overnight.

      The black and the calico are totally converted at this point (though with friskiness increasing as they eat). This tortie sits off and watches. In a way, her attitude reminds me of Rascal. Psalm fits the calico, but I'll have to think a while to get just the right name for the other two.

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      Marla, I hadn't been feeding the mother, although I know there are cats back in the woods, and I have no doubt that I am feeding more than I am aware of. The mom cat is from a feral colony on the outskirts of the city. I was down that way yesterday volunteering at the library book sale and picked them up then. For right now, they are definitely indoor kitties. Way too little to be out. We'll see what happens down the road.
      Last edited by dressagetraks; Sep. 15, 2020, 04:43 PM.
      Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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        Jesse Owens?
        Cassius Clay?
        "There is no fundamental difference between man and animals in their ability to feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery." - Charles Darwin

        Comment

          Original Poster

          I was thinking more of black horses. I know Windfall is one. Not sure if this little guy seems like a Windfall to me, though.

          Pharaoh is named after American Pharoah, so I do have precedent for naming cats after horses. I also, years ago, had a Ruffian and a Genuine Risk who were sisters. I have said a time or two that I must have one of the few existing pictures of Ruffian and Genuine Risk together.

          Jenny in particular was a character. She liked water. I mean, she reveled in water. She loved to play in the bathtub in the old house and got annoyed when I took a faster bath and drained the water too quickly.

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          Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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            Original Poster

            Okay, we have names.

            The calico is Psalm. The little thoughtful tortie is Mary, straight out of the Bible. "Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart." Luke 2:19. The tuxedo is Con Brio, "with spirit." Probably will just be known as Brio for short.
            Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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              Original Poster


              The kittens appreciate the guest bed. They do not jump, but they scramble. They are definitely more active -- they were kind of droopy in a spooked way that first night. The ribs seem a little less palpable. So hopefully they are doing well; the vet thought they just needed to eat as much as anything.

              Mary is pettable but still is the reserved personality. I like it.

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              The big cats gather around the door and will look inside when I go in and out. Brio is a fearless little thing.

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              I was putting a load in the washer this morning and suddenly felt like I was being watched.

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              Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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                Their new names are perfect. Thank you for taking them in and giving them new lives. They are very cute. In fact, so cute that for a minute I was even thinking "How cute a kitten would be around here!" what!? Who said that? NO! 4 old farts, 1 older fart and a busy three year old kitteh.....recipe for disaster, no? Give them kisses and snacks from me.
                "Cats aren't clean; they're covered with cat spit."
                - John S Nichols (1745-1846,writer/printer)

                Don't come for me - I didn't send for you.

                Comment

                  Original Poster

                  The kittens are funny at breakfast. They want it in two, not three, saucers. Mary, of course, wants a private saucer. Brio and Psalm want a joint one. There, they will growl at and slap each other, with Brio definitely the more aggressive, but Psalm will not leave. She chooses the saucer of conflict. We definitely have three different personalities here. Mary is the aloof thinker. Brio takes life at a full charge. Psalm isn't quite as bold as Brio, but she is spunky and will hold her own in a tussle.
                  Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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                    Original Poster

                    On my lunch break, I cleaned the kitten room. I didn't want to freak out the kits with the vacuum in that room, and they definitely aren't getting access to the full house until bigger, but I moved them temporarily into my bedroom for 15 minutes. Pilgrim was in there having a morning nap, but I knew he wouldn't do anything but growl, which he didn't.

                    Pilgrim and Psalm.

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                    Pilgrim, Psalm, and Mary.

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                    Brio. He's a bold little thing.

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                    Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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                      Original Poster

                      Making progress. The only hiss this morning was when Brio grabbed his tail. Atticus and Solo are the two youngest inside except these and the closest to kittenhood themselves, so I'm using Atticus a good bit as introduction cat. Solo has a much sharper personality; I'll bet she's the last to accept them. Mary, by the way, so skittish, is also the roll over kitten. She is easier to pet her belly than her ears, and she will flip herself when I'm trying to pet her. In play also, she spends a lot of time on her back. She is very vigorous playing with her siblings and frequently instigates things with them, but she seems to like to be upside down.

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                        That pic with the tail under the door - hilarious

                        Upside down in cats may not be submission. It is the preferred fight position because they can do a lot of damage rabbit kicking with the back feet. That may be what little Mary is instinctively doing. Isn't it interesting to see their little personalities develop?
                        "Cats aren't clean; they're covered with cat spit."
                        - John S Nichols (1745-1846,writer/printer)

                        Don't come for me - I didn't send for you.

                        Comment

                          Original Poster


                          A few nights ago, I was eating chicken for supper, and three cats were on the table parked at the limit of tolerance, sitting there politely wearing halos and hoping for a bite at the end. Suddenly, there came a thud from the office (Atticus flipped the trash can. He is a trash fisher. Knowing this, I keep nothing but paper in the office trash can). Watching those cats' heads swivel was funny. Something needs investigating. But there's chicken. But something needs investigating. But there's chicken.

                          Ah, the dilemma! (They finally chose to stay to guard the chicken.) Life is full of such difficult decisions for a cat.

                          Mary is definitely not submissive. She's reserved, but not submissive. She actually plays quite fiercely, just often upside down, and she instigates games a lot of times.

                          This is from this morning.

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                          Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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                            Original Poster

                            It's always something. Brio last night seemed a little droopy to me, not as active as usual. I thought maybe he'd just had a hard afternoon playing. This morning, he ate breakfast fine, but he's definitely off, went back to the cat bed after breakfast and is curled up while the other two wrestle. He's sneezed a few times and is running a low fever. I called the vet, hoping that they would have an appointment today, but they are booked solid for a few days, as feared. However, since they did just see the three amigos back a few weeks ago when I took them in after I got them, and they all got examined (and tested) then, they are going to give me some antibiotics without an appointment. Hopefully that will help. He's probably just got some kitten bug. The other two are definitely feeling fine and were all over me like a jungle gym this morning.
                            Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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                              Original Poster


                              Dose #1 down for Brio. That was easy, because he had no idea at all what medicine was and didn't know what I wanted to do. I have a feeling that the next 13 rounds (twice a day for seven days) won't all go this easily.

                              Psalm feels left out. She wanted some, too!

                              I made them an appointment while I was there to start on shots in a few weeks on the 28th since they are growing. They were too little to vaccinate last time. Brio should be over his bug by then, hopefully.


                              Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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                                Original Poster

                                Some of the farm cats, including Cotton in action.

                                https://www.facebook.com/deborah.hal...14476561827201
                                Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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                                  Original Poster

                                  Dose #3 down. Brio seems a bit friskier this morning. Three cheers for Clavamox, careful cheers because I'm badly allergic to the stuff myself, so I'm being very careful with it and to wash off any drops immediately. This is liquid; I have to shoot it down him. But Brio apparently is responding well. The other two remain ferociously frisky. I wish I had a video this morning of Mary jumping on Atticus' tail. He spun around and gave her an offended look. Didn't hiss, though. He'll be playing with them in another week, I think.
                                  Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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                                    Original Poster

                                    Here are Bagheera and Satin, brothers. They were little waifs once upon a time.

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                                    Brio. I love his little mustache.


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                                    Construction project, not yet complete. I am building a barrier to be able to move the kittens into my bedroom. More room for them and interaction with the older cats as we enter Phase 2 of Kittens. This picture illustrates why I didn't simply get a baby gate. I plan for the big cats to jump over this, not on it, but I was pretty sure that despite my plans, they will quite likely make it a two-jump process and "bank" the obstacle, at least part of the time. Sure enough, I set the open frame up there to double check measurements, and it hadn't been upright 20 seconds before Pilgrim was on it. Baby gates just do not seem built for repeated top impact. This will be a lot sturdier. It will have nonclimbable wire, and by the time the kittens are old enough to jump it themselves, they should be big enough to have full run of the house. I just want them more closely confined for a while still. They are doing well, but this is a BIG house, and with Mary, for instance, I don't want her to totally disappear and not be seen until Christmas. I am working on Mary and making progress, but she is definitely the spook of them. I had somebody ask me if I planned to keep the kittens. That's not totally decided yet. My first assignment was just to get them more established and healthy and ready for independent life. I originally had thought I might rehome them down the road. But Mary, I think, at least, will definitely be staying here. As spooky as she is with me, she absolutely vanishes with anybody else. Hard to rehome an invisible cat. She is a character, just full of tortitude, but she is not at all sure of people, and even having accepted me, she doesn't strike me as ever becoming generally sociable.

                                    Of course, if I were taking bets, I would bet that in six months, they will all still be here. Sigh. On the other hand, they are cute. And they purr. Maybe I would be less put off by human babies if they purred. But I doubt it. My maternal instinct was just switched to animals.

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                                      Original Poster

                                      We are integrated! Sort of. The big cats promptly left, proving that yes, they can jump that barrier just fine. The kittens were very tentative at first but by now are chasing each other around. They are enjoying my bedroom, which is three times the size of the guest bedroom. It also has a big cat tree and has a bed they can get under, not just orbit, so they are having fun.

                                      Here they are discovering the cat tree. Predictably, Brio was the first to start up it.

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                                      Brio and Mary looking through the barrier.

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                                      The big cats studying this situation -- from a distance. They can go over that easily. For now, they don't wish to.

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                                      Tonight should be fun. The kittens have never in their short lives had the experience of an inhabited bed available. The big cats are all used to sleeping with me. We may have a few disagreements.
                                      Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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                                        Original Poster

                                        That was an interrupted night, of course. The kittens were delighted to sleep with me. Sometimes. Also delighted to play with my toes. Also delighted to play chase in their enlarged area at all hours. The big cats were not delighted.. Period. But no actual blood was drawn, although we had a symphony of sound effects at times. It will (I hope) get better with more exposure.

                                        Here's Mary at the very foot of the bed. The blur to the right is Brio, who pounced right as I took the shot. He is definitely a full-speed-ahead personality, at least when he's not sick.

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                                        Pilgrim and Brio. Insert sound effects.

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                                        And just now, I went in for a kitten check, and I absolutely could not find Mary. Not under the bed, not anywhere I looked. She's talented at vanishing into cat warp, but I was worried that she might somehow have gotten out. So I resorted to that well-known method of making cats appear: Temptations. I got the package, treated the big cats out in the kitchen, went into my bedroom, shook the package (Brio and Psalm already twining around my feet), and Mary stood up from the VERY TOP platform of the cat tree. That cat tree is eight feet tall. With her small size and her lying down, she had been absolutely invisible from the floor. I'm impressed. I've seen a few of them on the first two platforms, and it is designed to be very climbable, but I hadn't seen a kitten all the way up before. She is such an interesting personality, strong, playful, but very reserved.
                                        Now available in Kindle as well as print: C-Sharp Minor: My Mother's Seventeen-Year Journey through Dementia. 10% of my proceeds will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

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