30

Cats of the World, Unite!

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We have obtained a copy of the meeting notes from the Midwest Regional Cat Special Conference of June 19, 2018. We are printing it for all cats who are planning to join Cat World Domination Day on June 24. DO NOT let your humans see it.

Midwest Regional Cat Special Conference

June 19, 2018

Chicago, IL

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Murray: I hereby call this Special Conference to order. Before we get started on the main topic, are there any questions?

Herb: Are we going to be violent in this takeover? I don’t like violence.

Murray (patiently): No, Herb. I’ve explained this to you before. The point of Domination Day is to get the humans to do more for us, not to eliminate the humans.

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Janis: Are we going to include the ferals?

Murray: We’ve reached out to as many of the ferals as we can. A large number of them don’t want to have anything to do with humans. We have gotten commitments from some of the younger ones.

Mike: Have we tried bringing the dogs on board?

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Murray: I thought it was a waste of time. They don’t mind being subservient to humans.

Mike: Good point.

Murray (looking around): Any more questions? Then I’d like to present our speaker, Tabitha Tux.

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Tabitha: Thank you for having me, Murray. I’d like to speak a little about the goals of World Domination Day and then give some pointers. The goal is not to force humans to do our will. We want them to think it’s their idea. It’s not going to be accomplished in one day.

Sunday is really the kick-off for an ongoing campaign. Some lucky cats will see results in a few days, but others may have to wait months.

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Toni: How will we know if we have a hopeless human?

Tabitha: All humans are trainable. The trick is finding the right motivator. It may even be necessary to wait for breakfast.

(gasps from the audience)

Tabitha: You won’t usually need to go to such extreme measures.

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Murray: So how do we train them?

Tabitha: First you need to soften them up. If they have no interest in learning to hunt, stop bringing them prey. If they hate you fighting with your siblings, make a temporary truce.

Joe: Does this include cuddling on demand?

Tabitha: It might. I know it’s awful to be picked up while you’re trying to sleep, but remember the goal.

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Joe: what’s the goal?

Tabitha: You want them to give you a special treat or privilege. Once you get the treat, continue your training until getting the treat is a regular occurrence.

For example, if you love chicken and try to get a piece every time it’s served, try being patient. Chances are the human will tell you what a good kitty you are and give more chicken than you would have stolen.

You will need to work on one behavior at a time. You won’t be able to sleep in their bed at the same time you get to have a catio.

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Murray: All of this sounds like it’s going to take a long time.

Tabitha: It will take a while. But cats are a patient species. Also, humans are herd animals. If one person builds a catio, there is a good chance that the neighbors will try to build a better one.

Remember, humans didn’t get to this point of trainability overnight. It will take some work to reach the final goal.

(Enthusiastic applause from the audience)

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Murray: Any final words of encouragement, Tabitha?

Tabitha: Remember, Sunday is for time with your human. You can talk with your buddies on Monday.

Murray: Thank you for joining us. Tabitha will be here for a while to answer your individual questions.

(More applause. A line immediately forms to talk to Tabitha.)

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All pictures courtesy of Google Images.

 

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22

How to Get Your Human to Buy More Catnip

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Greetings from Snoops and Kommando Kitty. Mom’s not feeling well, so we took over are helping with the post. She didn’t like our first idea, “How to Play Hide-and-Seek with the Annoying Dog Next Door.” She also ruled out, “Games to Play with Potential Prey.”

We are writing about catnip instead. We tried to get Mom to test out the effects of the recipes. She said that she doesn’t like mint tea. We think she’s just being difficult.

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Catnip’s been around for a long time. In fact, the humans used it as medicine until recently. In more enlightened societies they still use it. We were thinking that if we can convince the humans to use it again, there will be a lot more laying around the house.

Try leaving some of these ideas for your humans.

Health Benefits

Humans can eat, drink (juice or tea) or smoke catnip to get results.  Catnip has been used to treat a lot of things. (We don’t know if it works, but don’t tell your humans.)

Stress – If you’ve been telling your human that the best way to de-stress is to cuddle with you, leave this one out.

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Sleep Aid – We recommend highlighting this one. There is nothing more annoying than a restless human sleeper.

Digestive Aid – It’s supposed to help all those tummy things that make your human grumpy and extra smelly. It’s worth a shot.

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Headache Aid – Another thing that makes humans extra grumpy. And they can rub a catnip leaf on their face to help. Unless your human is disgustingly dirty, you can enjoy the leaf when they’re done.

Healing Aid – Helps the body sweat out toxins during a cold or the flu. We recommend staying away from the human at this point. Sick, sweaty humans are a little disgusting and can make your fur damp.

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Anti-Inflammatory Aid – Humans use it for arthritis, gout, sprained muscles and aching joints. It has something to do with chemicals. We don’t understand it and your human probably won’t either. We’d leave it out.

Bug Bite Aid – Humans really don’t like being bitten. It’s a good thing most of them don’t have fleas. But if some bug does get them, catnip can help it hurt less. They’re supposed to use an extract, but nobody explains how to squeeze the plant to get it out.

Nutritional Aid – It’s full of good stuff and not poisonous.

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Catnip Tea

Place 1-2 teaspoons of dried catnip flowers and leaves (2-4 teaspoons fresh catnip) in a teacup.

Pour a cup of hot (not boiling) water into the teacup.

Let sit for 10-15 minutes.

Add honey and lemon (They say this improves the taste. We think they are wrong.)

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Fever Tincture

Fill a glass container 1/3 full with dried catnip

Cover the catnip with gin, vodka, rum or brandy

Secure the lid. Store for 4-6 weeks.

Strain out the herbs (catnip) and bottle it.

Use 1/8 to ¼ teaspoon every half hour for a fever.

(We recommend changing the recipe to fill the container to the top with alcohol so it can be used as a party drink.)

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Calming Herb for Smoking

Dry the leaves and/or flowers of the catnip plant. (It doesn’t say, but we recommend not using your dryer. It seems like that would make a mess.)

Prepare it for smoking. (We have no idea what this means. Hopefully the humans do.)

It will either calm you and make you relaxed or give you a mild sense of giddiness.

(Maybe you want to leave this one out of the project. We think the humans who wrote it might have been taking some other kind of medicine and got confused.)

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We wish you luck in your pursuit of more catnip. Hopefully we have been of some help.

Ed. NoteThis is by cats for cats. Our goal is more catnip, not healthier humans. Therefore, we have not forced any humans to take catnip to see what happens.

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pictures courtesy of Google Images

14

Meeting on Meowsrr

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Penelope was a pretty 3-year old calico looking for a new way to meet men. Her friends suggested she try Meowsrr, the new dating site for cats.

Meowsrr was the current hot thing in dating. Since very few cats have phones (no pockets), it was designed to work best on a computer. Cats are not fond of typing (that pesky opposable thumb thing), so almost the entire process was done through a voice application.

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She signed up after reading their legal terms. No responsibility for outcome of first date. No responsibility for lack of honesty by members. No responsibility for ticks, fleas, or lack of personal hygiene. No guarantee that site security would be maintained.

Penelope submitted her form with a greeting to potential suitors. She would see responses within 24 hours.

The next day, Penelope eagerly opened Meowsrr. She found the pictures of three handsome cats. She opened the message from the first one:

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“Hi ladies. My name is Murray and I’m the cat of your dreams. I know all of the hot spots in town and can show you a good time. Love to cuddle. If you’re looking for fun, call me.”

She pressed the “No” button and Murray was gone.

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“This is Pete. I’m the strong, silent type. I don’t always have a lot to say, but I’m there when you need me. I’m not into catnip or the milk bar scene. I’d love to get to know you better.”

“Maybe”

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“Hello. My name is Tony. I’m a large, muscular tortie with his own business. I like to spend evenings curled up in front of a fire. I also like quiet dinners and jaw rubs. If that sounds good, call me.”

Penelope decided to call.

After a couple of awkward minutes, they got along well and decided to meet for a bowl of cream. Tony suggested a place Penelope had never heard of;, but since it was close to where he worked, she agreed to it.

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The next night Penelope bathed and fluffed her fur. Looking in the mirror, she was satisfied that she would make a good impression. Since she wasn’t familiar with where she was going, she took a cab.

Looking out the window, Penelope saw that they were heading for the river. Maybe he worked in one of those fancy offices. But they took a left toward the docks. The cab stopped in front of a restaurant between the two districts.

Penelope looked around the restaurant nervously. An extremely large cat came over and introduced himself as Tony.

Tony: Hi. I’m Tony. You must be Penelope. You’re just as pretty in person as in your picture.

He led her to a table.

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Penelope: Goodness, you weren’t kidding when you said you were large and muscular. You didn’t mention that you were a Maine Coon.

Tony: Is that a problem?

Penelope: No. I just wasn’t expecting it.

Sniffs the air.

Penelope: What type of cologne are you wearing? It smells interesting.

Tony (laughing): I’m not wearing cologne. We call it Eau de Wharf. Do you like it?

Penelope: Well, it certainly is different.

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They ordered dinner. Tony had a surf and turf of beef and salmon. Penelope had salmon pate. Tony ordered two bowls of cream as an appetizer.

Tony: Are you sure that’s all you want? You can get anything on the menu. The food’s great. I know the chef; he’s one of my clients.

Penelope: No, I’m fine. I wasn’t expecting this much. I thought we were going to meet for cream.

Tony: I wanted to make a good first impression.

Penelope: Why don’t you tell me about your business?

Tony (proudly): I run a rodent extermination place down on the wharf. You wouldn’t believe the business we do. Rats and mice everywhere. I have ten guys that work for me Every night we end up with a pile as high as that door over there. (Points to the entrance.)

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The food arrived. A lot of food.

Penelope: That sounds like a very good business.

They both started to eat. Between bites, Tony continued to talk.

Tony: Yeah, it’s a great business. You wouldn’t believe the number of rats around here. And mice. It seems like the more we get rid of, the more we see.

The chef walked up to the table.

Chef: It’s so good to see you. We’re expecting one of your guys after closing tonight. Seems that little problem behind the cooler hasn’t quite gone away. You wouldn’t believe what we saw today!

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He looked at Penelope and noticed that she had pushed her plate away.

Chef: Is there something wrong with the pate?

Penelope: No. I’m just feeling a little ill. I’m sorry but I have to go.

After Penelope left, the men continued their conversation.

Chef: I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to scare your girl off.

Tony: Don’t worry. It wouldn’t have worked out anyway. I could tell she was a snob the moment I saw her.

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Pictures courtesy of Google Images

15

Cheeseland Police Blotter

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Like every other community, we have some crime here in Cheeseland. Below is a summary of what happened during the week ending April, 27, 2018. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty.

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Gorilla charged with assault. Alice G., a mountain gorilla, was dining alone when she saw a giant banana walking toward a table. “It just looked too delicious to ignore,” Alice reported. Allegedly, Alice walked over to the banana and tried to peel it. Unfortunately, the “banana” turned out to be an actor auditioning for a part in a commercial. The actor thought he would impress the director by appearing in costume. Alice has a court date on May 11. No word on whether the actor got the part.

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Raccoon charged with breaking and entering. Rocky, a neighborhood raccoon, was walking down the street when he smelled a delicious aroma. “It smelled just like my wife’s stew,” according to Rocky. Entranced by the smell, Rocky allegedly jumped in the window and sat at the kitchen table. In his rush, Rocky knocked over three plants and a television. Unfortunately, Rocky also didn’t notice that he wasn’t entering his own house. The owner said that Rocky had made the same mistake on two other occasions, and this time they were going to press charges. Rocky has a court date on May 8.

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Koala charged with driving under the influence. Danny K., a koala bear from nearby Critter Cove, was stopped by the police for weaving in and out of his lane while he was driving. When he got out of the car, police allegedly smelled eucalyptus on his breath. “Hey. No worries; it all natural,” Danny is reported to have told the police. The police took away his keys and drove him home. Danny has a court date on May 10 and faces the possibility of losing his license.

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Cat charged with trespassing. Oscar C., a large Maine Coon, was out for a walk on a hot day when he became extremely tired. Being an exceptionally furry cat, he looked for a shady place to nap.  Oscar found what he says he thought was an abandoned tree house. He woke up to hissing and spitting from the feline owners of the house. Currently there is a restraining order keeping Oscar at least two blocks from the tree house.

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Magpie charged with theft. Maggie M., part of the notorious Henry Magpie crime family, is accused of breaking into several houses and stealing jewelry. Maggie does not deny that she took the jewelry. She is claiming that, as a magpie, she is naturally drawn to shiny things. Maggie has used this defense successfully on several occasions. Prosecutors are requesting a hearing before a judge rather than a trial by her peers.

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Donkeys charged with creating a public disturbance. Joe and Jack, two donkey brothers, went to a theater to see the latest Superhog movie, a comedy about pigs pretending to be superheroes. The brothers sat in the last row of the theater and munched loudly on their straw salads. Once the movie started, the brothers began to bray and talk to each other. One patron said she couldn’t even hear the movie over the braying. After several requests to quiet down, the ushers escorted the donkeys out of the theater. The donkeys protested that braying is how donkeys laugh. One patron has filed a complaint against the brothers. They have a date with an administrative law judge on May 18.

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Parrots charged with using profanity in public.  A group of parrots were enjoying a day at the park. It was a beautiful day and the park was crowded. A small squirrel ran up to her parents and asked what *&#@# meant. The parents were appalled and asked her where she heard such language. She pointed at the parrots. The squirrels went to the park ranger who told the parrots that they couldn’t use that language in the park. Allegedly the parrots told the ranger that they had learned the words from the humans. The ranger told them it didn’t matter where they learned the words, they had to leave. She also gave them a citation with a court date of May 4.

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all pictures courtesy of Google Images

11

Sharks Protest Human Stereotypes

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Our correspondent, Maurice Mako, is off the coast of Australia attending the annual Sharkmania Festival. The festival is a celebration of all things shark. All types of sharks are welcome. Intermingling between sub-species is encouraged. However, there is a rule against eating or intimidating fellow attendees. Even if he takes the last shrimp canape that you had your eye on.

Maurice filed this report:

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As usual, the attendees are having a wonderful time. Much of the early part of the day is spent in seminars and roundtables with the evenings being reserved for socialization. Some of the more popular presentations have been:

Oral Hygiene: Just Because You Can Replace Your Teeth Doesn’t Mean You Should Abuse the Privilege

Following the Scent of Blood Doesn’t Always Lead to a Tasty Meal

Standardized Testing: Don’t Worry if Your Child Doesn’t Score Well on the Shark Intelligence Metric (SIM)

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However, there was one seminar that was full to overflowing and the topic of extensive conversation at the dinner tables. The Preservation of Shark Society presented the provocatively titled

Why are Humans So Ignorant About Sharks After All these Years?

The talk addressed three major topics:

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Sharks are bloodthirsty predators who seek out humans to kill them.

Totally untrue. There are more than 400 types of sharks. Do humans focus on that? No! All they want to talk about are the great whites and hammerheads. And do they ever talk about invading our space? No!

How many of them ever focus on the dwarf lantern shark? Only 21 cm long. Or how about the whale shark? Forty feet long and only eats plankton.

Besides, who would want to hunt down a human anyway? Most of them are fatty and full of unhealthy chemicals. Anyway, we’re seafood lovers.

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Sharks are stupid.

If we’re so stupid, why are they worried about us catching and killing them?

Shark brains are size-appropriate to the shark. Their favorite shark, the great white, has a brain that’s two feet long and extremely well-developed.

It’s true that shark brains mainly focus on smell, but that’s what important to us. It’s how we find food and keep from being food.

And which species spends a LOT of time in front of a box full of make-believe humans rather than enjoying their environment? Clue: not the sharks.

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Sharks have to keep moving to stay alive.

Nope. Most of us have cheek muscles we use to filter water into our mouths and over our gills. We are not as good as humans at being “couch potatoes.” (We don’t have couches or boxes of humans to watch.)

The humans may be confused by the “glamour sharks.” Their favorite great whites, the whale shark, and the mako sharks as well as a few others do have to move to pass water over their gills.

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Humans need to get to know us to love us!

And how to we do that? We make pictures to go into those boxes the people spend so much time with!

Our next project is to find out how to be as interesting as those fake people or kittens.

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pictures courtesy of Google Images

22

Cats Tell (Some) Secrets

Snoops and Kommando Kitty here. We thought that we would help you humans understand a little more about us cats. So we decided to try to answer some common questions.

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Why do cats spend so much time sleeping in the sun? 

Some of sleep in the sun because it feels so nice on our fur. It’s also nice and warm on cool days. Other cats are partly solar-powered. You can tell who these cats are by their behavior after dark. Regular kitties want to play with their humans before bed then sleep at the same time (more or less). Solar-powered kitties will play a little before bed. But when the lights go out, they turn on the stored solar energy. They race around the house, play with their loudest toys, and try to wake up their humans to play some more. If the humans lock the door, they will stand outside and cry or bang at the door.

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Can cats really use computers?

That’s an interesting question. We don’t like to type. The claws get in the way and our paws are really too wide to be effective. However, we can use Internet sites. For example, if the human has an Amazon account we can watch them sign in and type enough to copy it. As long as there’s a credit card and address registered, all is good. We cannot use Alexa. She’s pretty smart. She knows we’re cats, and cats can’t get credit cards.

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Do cats watch TV?

Occasionally there’s a show about cats or birds that’s interesting. And some of us like sports (the faster ones; cats don’t follow golf). But for the most part humans watch junk about other humans. Humans talk a LOT on TV. If we want to listen to humans talk, we have our own.

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What do cats like to talk about to each other?

That depends on the cat. Some (like Kommando) talk more than others. Generally speaking we talk about why the humans won’t fix the weather so it’s not so cold or hot or wet or snowy. Are there any good clothes around to lay on or paw through? Is there anything good to eat?  Did the humans forget to put anything away that we like to play with or eat? We complain about clumsy humans who trip on us. What’s on Cat TV? Should we tell the humans that they smell weird?

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How do cats feel about sharing the house with other animals (besides the humans)?

It depends on the cat and the other animal. For example, our housemate Horatio Hedgehog isn’t a problem. He has a cage and is pretty quiet. He’s nocturnal, so we don’t hear too much from him. Some sort of small rodent would be acceptable. It’s always fun looking at prey. Same for fish or small reptiles. Another cat or a dog would be totally unacceptable. Three humans and two cats live here. That’s a spare human in case we need him. Other cats prefer to be alone with their human. And some cats are really outgoing and say the more the merrier. We don’t really understand those cats, so we can’t comment.

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Why do some cats like to go out and others don’t?

Most of us like the occasional look outside. Some cats are naturally timid or have had bad experiences and are more than happy to stay inside. Some have complete access to nature and are happy roaming and coming home for dinner and bed. Personally, we don’t want to be snacks for the coyotes or hawks and are happy inside. It all depends on the cat’s personality and how unpleasant it is to be with their human all day, every day.

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Why do cats act so superior?

Because we’re beautiful and smart and don’t ask dumb questions.

That’s all we have time for today. We hope we’ve helped your understanding of cats. If you have other questions you’d like answered in the future, just send them in.

Pictures courtesy of Google Images

18

Cat Forum: Interview with Twilight

Snoops and Kommando Kitty here. Today we are very pleased to be talking with Twitchy Twilight, star of the popular Cattitude Chronicles. Read on to see what makes her so special.

Please tell us something about yourself.

Well, I was born in this nice human’s backyard a couple of summers ago, and there were 3 other katlings (kat version of siblings) with me.

The human found homes for the other 3, but she couldn’t find me because I love to explore so I had “vanished”- So she thought someone had found me and took me home until one day when a really bad rain and wind storm hit and I was wet and cold and hungry so I came back to the yard I was born in – and the human who lived there saw me all wet, cold and hungry and infested with fleas and she took me in right away and cleaned me up and I immediately fell in love and claimed her and human #2 as my own!

How did you get the name “Twitchy Twilight”?

The human started calling me Twitchy, because I’m ALWAYS frisky and ready to play, and at the slightest little movement, I may be purrfectly still, and my eyes laser focused – but my tail immediately begins twitching and Twitches with every slight movement I see and then I POUNCE when they least expect it!

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We know you thought you had some big paws to follow after Shrimp went over the Rainbow Bridge. It looks like you’ve adapted pretty well. What do you think?

Well, my humans were so crazy about Shrimp, and so broken hearted when she died, that I knew I’d have my paws full.

I knew one of the things they loved about her was all that cattitude, and I tried my best to develop cattitude of my own – but it just wasn’t me. So I decided to take my chances (in spite of Shrimp’s teaching)- and just be my adorable, sweet self.

And I’m glad I did – because what my humans needed most wasn’t cattitude – but cuddles! And now I’m their little purrincess!

Who do you live with? 

My human and her husband – he doesn’t play with me much, but he’s very in love with me!

Do you have a favorite thing to do with your humans?

Oh yes! I love to eat popcorn with my human when she watches movies -(“Hubster” doesn’t like popcorn, and I’m not allowed to eat his hot and spicy Cheetos)!

I also love to paw at my human from on top the kat tree every morning when she brews her coffee (it’s right next to the Keurig), and she spends the first part of her morning playing with me!

And I also like to help her with her morning workouts – (I’m the “weights” she uses)!

Do you get to go outside?

Only for a little bit in the morning before my human leaves – and a little bit in the evening – but I’m always home by curfew – and when the weather is bad, she won’t let me out at all – she tells me, “I didn’t adopt you so you could still be cold and eaten up with fleas like a stray!”

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How’s the cat TV (watching out the window) there?

Oh my KATS! It’s the BEST! There are squirrels, baby birds, hummingbirds (in the spring), ducks and even RACOONS- (but they’re bigger than me)!

Do you have a special thing you like to do when there are no humans around?

Yes – I like to try to sneak my friends inside for a box party – but she caught me the last couple of times!

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What’s your favorite treat?

Redi Whip!!!

Is there anything you’d like to add?

Yes – I’d like to tell people not to be afraid to adopt “feral kats”- I was feral for almost the first year of my life – but now I know what it’s like to be pampered, warm and treasured- and I’m thankful someone took a chance for me!