14

Gator Family Christmas

130 Alligators Etc. ideas in 2021 | crocodiles, alligator, animals wild

Stan and Adele and their daughters Justine and Suzy are hosting the family Christmas this year. Most of the relatives from south Florida will be coming to South Carolina for the festivities. You can read about their family reunion here and here.

Justine: I’m so excited! I can’t believe Granny’s going to be here for Christmas! When are they arriving?

Adele: Your Uncle John is supposed to be driving everyone up the week before in his camper.

Suzy: What about Cousin Danny? Is he coming?

Adele: He’s in school until that Tuesday. So he’ll be coming separately.

Alligators avoid some beaches but not all

Stan: Cousin Vinny’s going to be able to get some time off from the resort for the holidays. So he and Uncle Stu will be coming separately. They won’t be staying as long.

Adele: Thank goodness! I was afraid Stu was going to try to find the house by himself, and we’d never see him again.

Justine: It is kind of scary how bad his sense of direction is. We’re friends on GatorGab. Last week, he was walking on the beach and was partway to Daytona before he realized he missed the turn into his subdivision.

Adele: We should probably start cleaning so we can get everything decorated before they get here.

Alligator basking in the sun | One of the alligators at Sant… | Flickr

Suzy: Where is everyone going to stay? Our house isn’t that big.

Stan: I’m renting a sauna. They said it feels just like southern Florida in the summer.

Justine: Oooh! That sounds nice.

Stan: And I’m going to set up a sunlamp in the basement.

Granny Gertie arrived with John, Jacob, and Norm a few days before Christmas.

Suzy: Hi Granny! Did you have a good trip?

Hungry, hungry... alligator? Reptile 'crashes' Florida picnic, chows down  on burgers - New York Daily News

Granny: It was long. Your Uncle John doesn’t really believe in taking rest breaks while he’s driving. I feel stiff.

John: Mom, you’re an alligator. You always walk like that.

Norm: Besides, it would have taken forever if we had stopped every time you wanted to. You wanted to eat every time you saw a picture of food.

Granny: It all looked so delicious.

John: How are things here? Adele, the house looks amazing.

Adele: Thanks, John. We’re doing well. Today was my last day of work before the holidays. We had our big potluck.

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Justine: Mom took swamp grass cookies. They’re always a big hit.

Adele: We exchanged “Secret Santa” gifts. Here’s mine.

She held up a package of “Roadkill Helper.”

Adele: Apparently someone thinks I don’t know how to cook.

Justine: You said your Secret Santa was that goofy chameleon. He’s just afraid of you.

Stan: You did threaten to step on him once.

Save Wildlife Habitats Animals Of The DAyThanks | Crocodiles, Reptiles,  Crocodile animal

Granny: Don’t worry about it dear. You can give it back to him at next year’s gift exchange. Could someone show me where we’re sleeping? I’d like to take a nap before dinner.

The visiting gators settled in. Danny arrived a few days later. Three days before Christmas, Vinny and Stu still had not arrived. Justine was scrolling through GatorGab and saw a post from Uncle Stu.

Justine: Hey, guys. Uncle Stu says that he left for South Carolina yesterday. Has anyone heard from him?

Stan: No. Does it say anything about Vinny?

Neighbors spot monster alligator strolling through Myrtle Beach community |  WPDE

Justine: He says that he is going to pick up Vinny and head here.

Suzy: He’s picking up Vinny?

Norm: It’s supposed to be the other way around. Somebody better call Vinny.

Granny: I’ll try to reach Stu. My brother has the common sense of a pumpkin.

Granny and Stan started trying to figure out what was going on while the others paced around the house. 

Granny: Stu got bored waiting for Vinny and decided that he would go to South Miami to pick him up at the club. He says he’s north of the city at a very nice lady gator’s house.

a congregation of alligators

Stan: So Vinny can pick him up there?

Granny: He’s not sure he wants to come anymore. He thinks she might be his soul mate. I told him he’s an idiot.

Stan: Vinny wants to know what he should do.

Granny: He should pick up his idiot father and bring him to the family Christmas.

Justine: Maybe we should invite the lady gator too. Uncle Stu just changed his relationship status to “It’s Complicated” on GatorGab.

Granny Gator began to make a low growling noise deep in her throat.

Next week: Will Uncle Stu and Cousin Vinny make it to South Carolina for Christmas?

Santa gator: Woman allowed to keep pet alligator in home - ABC7 New York

19

Thanksgiving Presentation at Critter Cove Elementary School

Shelter Dogs and Cats Receive Special Thanksgiving Feast • The Catnip Times

Ms. Celeste: Good morning, class! Today’s the day that we start your presentations on foreign cultures. I’m excited to find out what you’ve learned about groups who are different from you. Timmy Tortie, you’re up first. What will you be talking about?

Timmy: I’m going to talk about human Thanksgiving.

Susie Siamese: You mean when they go to those buildings and talk to God?

Timmy: No. It’s a big day at the end of the month of November here in the U.S. They get together with their family and friends for dinner.

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Ralph Raccoon: Why?

Timmy: A bunch of them came over from the other side of the world a long time ago. Apparently, the people who were already living here invited them to a big dinner. Or helped them learn how to grow stuff. Or didn’t kill and eat them. Or something.

Jimmy Wolf: So they get together to help each other as a way to commemorate?

Timmy: No. Basically, they get together and they eat a lot. Some of them talk about stuff they’re thankful for.

Susie: My Mom used to live with humans. She didn’t really like Thanksgiving. She said it was really loud. The turkey was pawsome, but the people yelled a lot.

Drunk cat | Cats | Know Your Meme

Timmy: Some things I read said that people get really stressed out because they have to spend time with their weird family members. I guess you can’t just invite the good ones. And sometimes humans drink stuff that makes them act silly and say stupid things.

Belinda Bear: Why do they do that?

Other Children: Humans are weird!

Ms. Celeste: What else can you tell us about human Thanksgiving, Timmy?

Timmy: Sometimes, they march in parades or watch other humans march in them.

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade going virtual due to COVID-19 | 13newsnow.com

Ralph: What’s a parade?

Timmy: It’s when a bunch of people walk down a street. Sometimes they do tricks like dancing or riding a bike. Some play instruments or sing. And some ride on platforms that they call “floats” even though nothing is floating.

Tony Tabby: That is super weird.

Ralph: Do they sing and dance about thanking someone or something?

Timmy: Not as far as I can tell.

Ralph: So what’s the point?

15 Santa Claus cats | Kitty Bloger

Timmy: Santa Claws comes at the end of the parade and the humans welcome him back.

Susie: That can’t be right. Santa Claws comes on Christmas Eve. He’s busy getting ready before that.

Timmy: Don’t worry. It’s not the real Santa Claws. It’s just some human who dresses up like him. They don’t look realistic at all.

Jimmy: I’m getting really confused. What does Santa Claws have to do with Thanksgiving?

Timmy: According to Catepedia.com, the humans like to see Santa Claws so they know it’s time to start shopping for Christmas.

Jimmy: Couldn’t they just use a calendar?

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The class laughed, but Jimmy looked confused.

Timmy: It’s hard to explain why humans do things sometimes. Someone started doing the Santa thing a long time ago, so now it’s what they call a tradition.

Jimmy: So human Christmas kinda of starts at the end of Thanksgiving?

Timmy: Kinda. They do a lot of shopping that weekend.

Tony: That is really bizarre. They get together to eat a lot of food. Then shop.

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Timmy: One other thing that a lot of them do on Thanksgiving is watch American football. It’s a game with a bunch of men on one team running around trying to keep the other team from reaching the end of the field.

Susie: What does that have to do with giving thanks?

Timmy: As far as I can tell, nothing. Some humans just like to watch other humans play-fight. It gives them something to do while they’re waiting for all that food to cook. And it keeps them out of the way.

Crazy Cat Lady - My teen...all day...everyday! UGH!! ----- *Thanks to one  of our readers for this amazingly adorable photo of their kitty!* | Facebook

Susie: It probably gives them something else to argue about.

Timmy: That’s really all I know about Thanksgiving. It sounded a lot more promising before I did the research. I think it’s a pawsome idea, but it could use some work.

Susie: Yeah. Maybe the animals should take it over and show the humans how to do it right.

Ms. Celeste: Susie, that’s a wonderful idea. Let’s have our own Thanksgiving.

Next week: The Critter Cover Elementary School Thanksgiving.

Will Those Holiday Leftovers Poison Your Cat? - CatGazette

Pictures courtesy of Google Images

 

21

Snoops and Kommando Chat about Cats

Online School for Cats Soon to be a Reality - Learning Liftoff

Greetings from Snoops and Kommando Kitty. Mom hasn’t been feeling well, so she said we could take over the blog this week. Unfortunately, it’s been really boring around here lately so we don’t have anything to talk about either. So we went to Mr. Google and asked about fun cat facts.

We found some interesting stuff. The information below is from https://www.quizbeez.com/blog/52-cats-fun-facts and https://laffgaff.com/cat-trivia-questions-answers/.

What Is The Name For A Group Of Cats? - Tuxedo Cat

Approximately 25% of American households “own” a cat.

A group of cats is called a clowder.

A group of kittens is called a kindle.

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If a human killed a cat in ancient Egypt, they could be put to death.

Félicette was the first cat launched into space (as part of the French space program in 1963). She returned safely to earth.

In the 1870’s a town in Belgium had cats deliver the mail. They put the mail in waterproof pouches around the cat’s neck and sent the cats out. It was not successful.

Kittens Cats Group Of - Free photo on Pixabay

A cat’s nose print is a unique identifier.

The house cat shares 96% of her DNA with the tiger.

Cats have 230 bones in their bodies. (Humans have 206.)

All kittens are born with blue eyes.

Kittens from the same litter can have different fathers.

Someone slept too long and wrinkled her whiskers. - ) | Cat memes, Funny  animal pictures, Dog memes

Trimming a cat’s whiskers will cause it to become disoriented. They help the cat determine whether a space is big enough to fit in and how far to jump to reach a certain spot.

Cats can either purr or roar. They cannot do both. Only the jaguar, leopard (except snow leopard), lion, and tiger can roar.

The average house cat can run up to 30 miles per hour (48 kph). Human athletes top out at about 27 mph.

How to Tell if a Cat is Smart | PetMD

Cats teeth can stab, anchor, and cut. But they cannot chew.

Cats cannot detect as many colors as humans. But they are far superior at detecting motion. Their eyes can also fully dilate which allows them to see in extremely low light.

Scientists have been unable to study cats’ intelligence to any great degree because cats are not interested in cooperating with the research.

A cat’s sense of smell is far superior to a human’s although not as good as a dog’s.

Create meme "sleepy cat, cat , cat " - Pictures - Meme-arsenal.com

Cats like to attack human feet because they are roughly the size of the prey cats normally hunt. (Fuzzy slippers or socks make the resemblance more striking.)

Most cats don’t like cold food. They prefer something close to the temperature of their tongue.

Cats sleep an average of 15 hours per day, although kittens and seniors generally sleep more. The actual schedule will probably vary by the household routine of a house cat.

Cats prefer to drink running water. Possibly because it tastes fresher.

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The Maine Coon is the largest domestic cat. They are not a hybrid with a wild cat.

Black panthers are not a specific feature. They are just large cats with extra melanin.

Turkish Van cats love water.

The Sphinx cat is the only breed native to Canada. It was formerly known as the Canadian hairless.

Bengal cats have fur that sparkles under the light.

Cat Books: 5 Books About All Things Feline

Pictures courtesy of Google Images.

20

Hibernation Prep – Fall 2021

Could humans hibernate like bears? | TheHill

Mama: Well, it’s that time of year again.  Is everybody ready to settle in for the winter?

Papa: I can’t wait. It’s been a long summer.

Mama: Penelope, you sweep out the cave. Kenny, you and Carl start gathering fresh moss and leaves for the beds.

Papa: I’ll suspend our subscription to Grizzly Times until April.

Mama: Don’t forget to have them hold our mail too.

Papa: Do you like the message I have for the phone?

“Thank you for calling the Bearlingtons. We can’t come to the phone until spring. Please leave a message and we’ll return your call after April 15. Please do not leave more than one message. We will not be checking our calls.”

Glacier National Park Cameras Capture a Black Bear Waking Up From Hibernation | Mental Floss

Mama: Yes. That sounds about right. Do you think April 15 is late enough?

Papa: You know Penelope and the boys. There’s no way they’ll let us sleep past mid-April.

Penelope: Mama, can I keep my InstaBear account active this year? I’m going to miss so much.

Mama: You know the rules, dear. Hibernation season is family time. No electronics. Besides, you’ll be sleeping most of the time.

Penelope: I know. But it’s so boring until we actually settle down. Can Jessica stay here for hibernation?

Papa: Of course not! She should be sleeping with her own family.

Penelope: She’s mad at them. They wouldn’t let her run away with her boyfriend.

Papa: The zoo runaway? He seems a little old for her.

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Penelope: Yeah. He was kind of weird. He wanted to move to the city and open a food truck.

Mama: She’s probably better off with someone local.

Papa: Did you pay the mortgage ahead? We don’t want to get kicked out mid-winter.

Mama: The bills are all set.

Kenny and Carl returned with armloads of bedding material. Mama Bear created hibernation spots for each of them to spend the winter. Looking around the room, she tried to remember what else needed to be done. Suddenly, she heard a familiar voice.

Voice: Anybody home?

She looked at Papa Bear.

Black Bears Emerging From Hibernation | Naturally Curious with Mary Holland

Mama: You did not invite your brother Sam to hibernate with us, did you?

Papa: Sam! What are you doing here? I didn’t think you even knew where we lived.

Papa’s brother Sam had spent the previous winter with them. He had eaten all of the spare provisions and generally made a mess of the cave. Papa and Mama had several fights over his lack of responsibility When spring came, they kicked him out and switched caves.

Sam: Joey! Long time, no see! I had a heck of a time finding you. After we parted way, I met up with a beautiful girl. I really thought she was the one. But fall comes, and she tells me I have to find some place else to hibernate. I don’t understand.

Papa: That’s too bad. Things had been going well?

Give us a bear hug! These rescued grizzlies enjoy life again in Europe's largest bear sanctuary | Daily Mail Online

Sam: I really thought so. Except for that time I confused her with her sister. Her sister’s really pretty too.

Papa: If she dumps you after one mistake, she’s not the girl for you.

Sam: Maybe not. Too bad though. She had a really nice cave. But she was kind of particular about keeping it clean. Reminded me of your wife. Speaking of which, is Shelly around?

Mama: I’m right here, Sam. To what do we owe the pleasure?

Sam: Good to see you! I missed you guys!

Kenny: Uncle Sam!

Sam: Hey Kenny! You miss me?

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Kenny: I really did! Mom won’t let us wrestle in the house when you’re not here!

Papa: Are you living around here now?

Sam: Well…actually…

Mama: Tell us the truth Sam.

Sam: Lydia kicked me out and I don’t have anywhere to go. Everything around here is booked.

Kenny: You can stay here. Right, Mom?

Sam: I don’t think your Mom’s going to want me around for another winter.

Sad Bear Is Sad

He looked sadly at Mama.

Penelope: I’m sure she’s fine with it. She was just talking about how hibernation should be spent with family.

Papa: And he said he doesn’t have anywhere else to go.

Mama: He was a terrible guest last year. I don’t know.

Sam: Please?

Next week: Will Mama let Sam stay for the winter?

Autumn Bear Wallpapers - Top Free Autumn Bear Backgrounds - WallpaperAccess

Pictures courtesy of Google Images.

17

Gator Family Reunion – Part 2

Hungry, hungry... alligator? Reptile 'crashes' Florida picnic, chows down  on burgers - New York Daily News

Where we are – Stan, Adele, Suzy, and Justine have arrived at Granny Gertie’s farm in the Florida Everglades for the family reunion. You can read part 1 of the story here.

Stan: Mom! You look great!

Gertie: Welcome, everyone! Come in and make yourselves at home. Adele, you’re beautiful as ever. And girls, you look just like your mother.

Adele: Thank you, Gertie. It’s good to see you.

Suzy: Hi, Granny! We missed you.

Gertie: I miss you too, Sweetie. Make yourselves at home.

Florida woman gets to keep her ATV-riding pet gator 'Rambo' | Blogs

Norm: Hey, bro! Welcome! Hop in the truck. We have to go get Stu. He took a wrong turn off of I-95 and is trapped at some roadside attraction. He said they want to put him in a cage and charge humans to look at him.

Gertie: Poor Stu! I told him to take the bus.

Stan: Let me say hello to John and Jacob before I go.

John: It’s been a long time! How’s it going?

Stan: Good! Did you guys get the wild boars here?

Jacob: Pretty much.

Stan: What do you mean?

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Jacob: We managed to arrive with 10 of the 12 we started with.

Stan: I thought you were only coming across the state.

Jacob: We were, but John got hungry.

Stan: John! You promised!

John: I said I wouldn’t eat them all. And I didn’t. Ten should be plenty. Mom has lots of other food.

Florida Woman Fights to Keep Her Pet Alligator Who Wears Clothes and  'Rides' ATVs - ABC News

Suzy: There’s Danny! Let’s go say hello!

Justine: Okay. But I don’t want to cuddle.

Suzy: Hey, Danny! How’s school?

Danny: Hi Suzy! Hi Justine! It’s going well. Bird studies are a lot harder than I thought they would be. So many of my patients are afraid of me. I don’t understand it.

Justine: Duh. You’re an alligator. We’re kinda known as apex predators.

Danny: I know. I have to be really careful about what I eat. And I have to brush my teeth before I can go to class.

Suzy: Think you’ll make it through?

Danny: I hope so. But I might have to switch to a general practice if things don’t improve.

Alligator Smashes Watermelon In A Single Bite. Watch Incredible Video

Adele: Hi, Danny. Girls, do you want to get something to eat? Granny has all kinds of food prepared. You’ll be excited to know that she did get some boa meat.

Suzy: Ooh! I can’t wait to try it!

Justine: Hmm. This isn’t as tasty as I thought it would be from the way everyone was talking about it.

Adele: You’re right. It kind of tastes like…I don’t know…maybe chicken.

Suzy: Well this is totally disappointing. I’m going to put it on GatorGram anyway. At least everyone will know I tried it.

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Penelope: Hi, everyone! I want you to meet my new boyfriend, Maxwell.

They all smiled at Maxwell.

Penelope: We met at the beach. He’s such a sweetheart. He cleared off a spot for me to sun in.

Adele: Hi Maxwell. What do you do for a living?

Maxwell: Oh, I don’t have time to work. I spend my time sunning on the golf course.

Justine: That sounds interesting. So you entertain the humans?

Maxwell: They entertain me really. It’s fun to watch them when I crawl out of the water. My family is pretty well-off so I don’t have to work.

Penelope: We’re planning a trip to the Florida Keys later this year.

Suzy (whispering to Justine): She hates to work and he doesn’t need to. They’re perfect.

Florida Soccer Adds Seven for 2021 - Florida Gators

Gertie: Okay! It’s time for games.

Suzy: Oh, I hate this part! Someone always takes the death-roll challenge too far and we have to do a resuscitation.

Justine: I’m going to watch the tug-of-war. It’s a lot less dangerous, and it’s fun to see who gets dragged all the way into the water.

Penelope: Why can’t we ever play something nice like Charades?

Adele: I’m going to rest in the shade. It is way too hot for this Carolina gator down here.

Later.

Louisiana's Cajun Bayou: Where Gators, Gumbo and Gallic History Prevail –  Traveling Boy

Stan: I’m glad we made it back before the food was all gone.

Stu: Thanks for rescuing me guys! I can’t believe I was almost part of a circus.

Norm: You weren’t going to be part of a circus. They wanted to put you in a petting zoo.

Stan:  That’s crazy. Who wants to pet a gator?

Stu: They thought I was an iguana.

Stan: Humans are weird.

Gertie: Time for family pictures! Everyone smile!

As the family lay in water relaxing, Gertie started telling stories about the boys when they were younger. Suzy and Justine closed their eyes and listened. It was their favorite part of the reunion.

What Is A Group Of Alligators Called? + Quiz & More!

Pictures courtesy Google Images.

24

Gator Family Reunion

Hungry, hungry... alligator? Reptile 'crashes' Florida picnic, chows down on burgers - New York Daily News

The alligator clan was getting ready for the annual family reunion. This year, Granny Gertie was hosting at her farm in the Everglades. Stan was particularly excited since he hadn’t been home in several years. His wife Adele and the girls were less enthusiastic.

Adele: I can’t believe we’re going to South Florida in August. It’ll be a steam bath.

Stan: We’re alligators. We love hot, humid weather.

Adele: I guess. But I’ve gotten used to the ocean breezes here in South Carolina.

Hundreds of alligators gather at Florida watering hole for sunbathing session

Suzy: Yeah, Dad. And you know how your relatives are. Everyone’s gonna lay in a huge cuddle puddle.

Stan: Of course. We’re family. We only see each other at these reunions. And most folks don’t make it every year.

Justine: Well, I don’t want to cuddle with Cousin Danny anymore.

Suzy: Why not? He’s cute.

Justine: I know. But he thinks he’s too good for everyone now that he’s at Animal Tech.

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Stan: That’s right! He wants to be a bird doctor.

Adele: That’s very strange. What’s wrong with being a gator doc?

Justine: He says he wants to promote inter-species peace.

Suzy (giggling): He probably has plans to start an exotic bird trade.

Stan: Be nice, Suzy! He’s a good gator.

Police Find Alligator Named 'El Chompo' During Drug Bust

Adele: Is your cousin Vinny going to be there?

Stan: I’m not sure. He’s been working a lot of hours at that resort in Miami Beach.

Adele: I can’t believe he actually lets humans touch him.

Justine: Eww! What kind of job does he have?

Stan: He’s a guard at an upscale beach club. Your mom has it backwards. He touches the humans. They don’t touch him.

Adele: Even so. He should be careful. They have germs.

15 Times Adorable Animals Stopped to Smell The Flowers | Animals, Cute animals, Baby alligator

Suzy: And they smell funny. Speaking of smelling funny, I wonder if Roxanne will be there?

Stan: Does Roxanne smell funny?

Justine: Don’t you remember last time, Dad? She got caught in those rose bushes and ate her way out. She smelled like flowers for days. Not a natural gator aroma.

Adele: It could have been worse. Your Uncle Stu wandered through a pasture full of cow droppings. He’s so low to the ground that he picked up quite a stink.

Stan: Stu has a terrible sense of direction. He gets lost every time he leaves his own swamp. He really should use public transportation.

Justine (giggling): No one’s going to let an alligator who smells like cow poop on the bus. Most folks are afraid of us even when we don’t stink.

They find a very angry alligator in the garden | Web24 News

Suzy: That’s true. Some of us are kind of scary, though. Like Uncle Charlie.

Justine: Yeah. He growls a lot. And snaps.

Adele: He just doesn’t have much patience. He doesn’t suffer fools gladly.

Suzy: Gladly? He almost took the head off our waiter the last time we saw him.

Justine: Yeah. The poor guy looked like he wanted to crawl in a hole when Uncle Charlie told him his food was overcooked the third time.

Suzy: He should have just brought him a raw steak.

Adele: It is unfortunate that Charlie normally eats his food wild. He has a hard time in restaurants.

Alligator eating snake: Dramatic photos show snake trying to escape alligator's jaws in Florida - CBS News

Suzy: Do you think Granny will be serving boa constrictor? It’s been trending on GatorGram and looks yummy.

Stan: I don’t know. I hear they can be hard to catch. I don’t want Mom getting hurt over a stupid picnic.

Adele: Maybe your brother Norm could catch some. She lets him live there rent-free. Seems like he could catch dinner once in a while.

Stan: I guess that’s a possibility. He’s pretty fast.

Justine: Maybe they sell them in the deli or at a roadside stand. Pickled boa is supposed to be good.

Suzy: And smoked. It doesn’t have to be fresh.

Adele: That does sound good. What are we going to bring?

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Stan: Since we’re traveling so far this time, I was just going to contribute to the wild boars.

Suzy: Ooh! Who’s bringing boar? I love pig!

Stan: Your Uncles John and Jacob know a farmer who lets them hunt on his land. I’m helping pay for the refrigerated truck to get them to the party.

Adele: That’s a good idea, honey. That way we don’t have to lug anything on the train. You’re sure John won’t eat them on the way, right?

Stan: He promised.

Adele: I hope so. He’s the biggest gator I know. He could probably eat a couple of them by himself.

Stan: That’s true. But he promised.

Swagligator | Swag | Know Your Meme

Justine: Did you say we’re taking the train? Why can’t we take the car? I hate the train.

Suzy: What’s wrong with the train?

Stan: I’m more comfortable on the train. Gators aren’t built to spend hours in a car. You can tell they were designed by humans.

Justine: I guess. But I hate the way everyone looks at me like they think I’m going to eat them.

Suzy (giggling): Some of them do look pretty yummy.

Justine: I’m serious. It’s embarrassing. And annoying.

Adele: I know what you mean. It’s like they can;t tell the mean gators from the rest of us.

Stan: Don’t pay any attention to them. They’re just being ignorant.

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Justine: Maybe we should travel with kittens to show how gentle we are.

Suzy: Ooh! Kittens are cute! And they could give us massages.

Adele: I don’t think kittens would enjoy the reunion.

Justine: Probably not.

Stan: If anyone gives you a hard time, I’ll growl at them. Sometimes you have to embrace your inner gator.

Justine: Love you, Dad.

Stan: Anytime, sweetie.

Scientists Gave Alligators Ketamine and Headphones to Understand Dinosaur Hearing

Adele: We should bring your Mom a gift since we’ll be staying with her.

Suzy: Cool! We get to stay at the farm?

Stan: Of course. Granny insisted. She misses you girls.

Justine: We miss her too. Maybe she’ll teach us more authentic gator moves.

Suzy: And tell us more secrets about Dad!

Justine: I can’t wait!

Alligator Crashes UF Students' Lake Alice Picnic - WUFT News

Next week: The reunion.

Pictures courtesy of Google Images.

 

25

Thunder Katt: Snacks from the Human Side

Lolcats - snack - LOL at Funny Cat Memes - Funny cat pictures with words on  them - lol | cat memes | funny cats | funny cat pictures with words on

Snoops and Kommando here. Mom’s brain has decided to take a summer break. Fortunately for us, cousin Thunder was able to come to the rescue and give us this yummy post. Thanks, Thunder!

Greetings friends, both furry and non furry alike! Thunder Katt here, and today I’m doing a sort of follow up to my tummy facts blog. I’m here to outline some nutrition facts and tips on human foods favored by me and my sisters, Angel and Onyx. If you have a favorite human treat that isn’t listed, just know that means two things: you have a wonderful palate, and the calories don’t count, so eat as much as you want! (Ed. Note: Thunder is exaggerating. Please snack responsibly.)

Please also note that while all three of us love dairy, including cheese, ice cream and whipped cream, there aren’t many benefits to cats eating dairy products. Due to lack of helpful information, dairy products have been left off the list. We also left off meats and fish, since most cats enjoy these as we are obligate carnivores. 

Lettuce

As many of you may know by now, a preferred Thunder treat is lettuce! I like iceberg the best, but have also been known to chow down on butter lettuce, romaine lettuce, and leafy things that look like lettuce, such as kale. Lettuce can actually help hydrate and cool you down in the hot summer months. Lettuce also has vitamins A and C, which helps with our furs and vision, along with a small amount of iron and folate for overall health. Some lettuce also has potassium, which again helps with our vision. There is a small amount of calcium in lettuce, which can be converted into crude fats in cats. Just make sure you don’t get too much calcium (generally not a risk from eating lettuce), as it can cause deposits in your fatty stores that will eventually make you sick. 

Squash

All three of us have been known to eat butternut squash (it’s a favorite food for the human kitten, so we seem to have a lot of it). Before enjoying this food, be warned that it is orange and will stain furs that are lighter in hue (like my white chest and tummy) so proceed with caution if eating squash in puree form. Squash is generally relatively bland by itself, making it ideal for cats with more sensitive tummies. While you can sweeten up squash with brown sugar or butter, it tastes just as good plain. This superfood actually provides all of your key vitamins, including A, C, K, and magnesium. It also provides vitamin E, folate, and B vitamins. While all of these vitamins provide benefits to cats in small amounts, don’t overdo the squash; our bodies are not meant to process a lot of magnesium and vitamin B in one sitting. However, since you would need over a cup of squash to reach these levels in an eight-pound cat, I say there isn’t much need to worry, and feast away on some squash cubes or puree! 

Grapes

I discovered grapes for the first time about a week ago. They’re wonderful! Not only are they small enough to bat around, they’re cool, which helps with the summer heat. They come on a cool stem/vine that you can chew on (Mom won’t let me do this, but when she isn’t looking it’s fun)! You can pounce in the bag they arrive in for hunting practice. And, best of all for our health, in addition to carbs and protein, grapes also have an abundance of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as thiamine. They also provide a small amount of iron and calcium. I would definitely give grapes a try if you haven’t already. 

Cherries

Cherries are actually not really recommended for cats, since they are considered a stone fruit due to the pits. These puts not only prevent a choking hazard, but we cannot digest the pit if ingested. However, Angel keeps licking the meat of the fruit, which seems to be okay (she typically only gets one or two; we don’t want to risk making her sick). Assuming you avoid the pit and stem, cherries can benefit cats by offering the typical vitamins (A, C, and K), along with magnesium, calcium, and antioxidants. These sound like a great idea when your human brings home the office cold and wants to snuggle right up with you! 

Oatmeal

Another Angel recommended food is oatmeal, especially mixed with applesauce. Be very careful if trying this food, as oatmeal is hot and it’s very easy to burn our noses. While oatmeal by itself is bland, you can flavor it very easily (like with applesauce, vanilla, or another flavor of your choosing). The benefits of oatmeal include magnesium and thiamine. Just make sure to eat it before it dries to the dish, and be warned of its sticky nature, as it can get stuck in your furs and whiskers. 

Applesauce 

Our humans insist on buying the unsweetened stuff (yuck!) since the human kitten eats it as his nighttime snack, but Angel doesn’t seem to mind it. I think she likes the cool, thick consistency of it. Avoid the cinnamon applesauce, as cinnamon is not always agreeable with the digestive tracts of cats. If you choose this Angel recommended treat, know that you are also getting vitamins A, B, C, K, and magnesium, as well as calcium. Apples are fairly high in sugar, so it’s best to limit your intake on this (even if you do get the yucky- I’m sorry, unsweetened-) sauce.

Oat milk

This is definitely another Angel treat! I was so disappointed when I was told my human kitten couldn’t tolerate cow’s milk, so we had to start buying oat milk. We buy the vanilla flavored milk, so I guess Angel finds it tolerable. Like dairy based milk, you don’t want to gouge yourself on this, as there are proteins in there that cats have a hard time with, and a lot of calcium. However, if you do find yourself lapping up a little oat milk, know you’re getting vitamins A, K, and D, as well as iron, fiber and riboflavin. Again, be warned of the calcium content in this drink, and enjoy sparingly. 

Chips 

The one human food Onyx has ventured to try is a quinoa chip. I myself happen to enjoy corn and tortilla chips, and Angel and I both enjoy the flavored chips, such as pizza, spicy, and sour cream. Overall, chips are not healthy, and should be enjoyed on rare occasions as a treat. However, since you’re already indulging on chips, might I recommend you try nachos? These cheesy, meaty chips are absolutely wonderful! 

Popcorn

Angel started eating popcorn the day she came home from the shelter. This crunchy treat is best for us if it’s low in salt and oil. Some benefits of non salty, non oily popcorn include vitamins A, B, and E. Be careful to chew this thoroughly to avoid choking, and have your human remove all kernels prior to eating. 

Crackers

I discovered the joy of Club Crackers the other day. They’re a bit difficult to eat, as they’re so flat, but the salty, baked cracker taste was definitely worth the difficulty of dragging it away and eating. Again, be sure to chew these all the way through so you don’t choke. While enjoying your cracker, note that you are also getting vitamins B and C, though not much else; eat as a dessert or as an occasional snack. 

I do know some kitties, my cousin Snoops included, enjoy sweets. And I’m sure you each have a unique treat you enjoy for yourselves. Keep trying new things, and hopefully you find some new treats to enjoy. But also remember that if something your human offers you is yucky and below standards, it is more than acceptable to stick your nose up, flick your tail and stroll away. They’ll learn eventually. Keep munching and crunching away!

Furs and purrs,

Thunder Katt

22

Thunder K Katt: Kitchen Wiz

 

Greetings! We want to welcome back our cousin and collaborator, Thunder K. Katt. She’s here with tips for helping your human cook.

Hello everyone! It’s Thunder, and I’m here to show even how the most undomesticated kitty can help their human in the kitchen! Make sure your human is in a good mood before you help, though, or you may not get the compensation for your time that you deserve. All of these tricks have been tried by me and my sister, Onyx; hopefully they work well for you! 

Help set up by clearing off a space on the counter or table.

I’m not sure if all humans are as bad as mine are, but any time they clean off our counter and table, within two days it’s cluttered with new stuff! Cans of food (usually yucky foods, like canned veggies or sauces), bills, spices (again, nothing good like catnip- mine humans favor salt and white pepper), or bottles of soda- anything that fits will sit. Then, when she goes to mix the cake batter, or assemble the hamburgers, my mom gets super frustrated with the lack of space. Thankfully, cats can help with that! Use your paws or tails to swipe off the smaller items, such as pens, coins, and those pesky bills. If there are larger, bulkier items in the way, plop down next to them, forcing the full brunt of your weight against the item. They’ll move, and your human will have room to cook! Be careful not to disrupt anything glass, as the shards can hurt your paws, and try not to knock over any open containers of liquid- not only will you get wet, your humans will get grumpy. 

Help gather the ingredients.

Have you ever seen your human pace back and forth to the refrigerator and cupboard five or six times to gather what they need, only to realize they forgot one last ingredient, yet again disturb your afternoon lounge to gather it? Put an end to it by grabbing the ingredients for them! Although most containers won’t fit into our mouths (sticks of butter and some smaller produce varieties are the exception), you can jump on the shelf and knock the ingredients off for them. I’ve found this works best with sticks of butter, packages of cream cheese, meats and cheeses, and spices kept in sealed, plastic containers. I would avoid doing this with anything liquid, and with flour, sugar, or loose spices. If they’re looking for a produce item, roll it to them with your paw- try to avoid putting it in your mouth, as many things humans cook with are either too bulky to carry or can harm you if ingested. 

Test out the viability of the cookware.

What would be more tragic than your human working hard to prepare something, only to realize the dish they wanted to use wasn’t suitable to cook with? Save them the time and frustration by testing it out yourself! As soon as your human selects and lays down the dish they intend to use, jump into it. You can stalk around in it, roll in it, or just sit in it. Make sure you’re given enough time to truly test the quality of the dish- if you have to, repeat the procedure until you are satisfied. It is imperative that you perform this maneuver as soon as the dish is set out, to prevent anything from being put in the dish prematurely.

Quality inspection!

This is definitely one of the best parts of helping out in the kitchen! As yummy ingredients are opened and mixed together, make sure the quality is up to par! Simply go up to what you want to test and start licking. You can also stick your nose or paw in whatever you want, if there are multiple options. By doing this, you’re alerting your human that you’ve claimed that piece of food, and that they need to leave it for you. Don’t hesitate to perform quality checks multiple times throughout the cooking process- after all, a block of cream cheese is going to taste much different than cream cheese combined with milk, butter, and powdered sugar. You want to ensure that only the best is created in your kitchen!

Add fiber!

A big bonus to helping is the added fiber that cat fur brings to the meal! While performing your quality checks, take the opportunity to shed in some loose furs. You’re making yourself more comfortable, and adding the gift of beauty and fiber to your human’s creation! This sounds like a win-win to me. 

Make sure the oven is heated properly. 

It is important to note that this can only be done with ovens, not stoves, and this must be done with caution and good judgement! Most baked goods and oven roasted meals require the oven be preheated to a certain temperature before baking can ensue. Although most ovens beep to let you know when the desired temperature has been achieved, don’t leave anything to error. As soon as the door warms up, snuggle right up against it to make sure it is properly heated. Walk away as soon as your human opens it up, though- no kitty wants a nose burn! 

Help with cleanup.

Cleanup is typically seen as boring, and should mostly be left to the humans. However, there are a few ways you can have fun and help clean up. First, make sure you lead your human to the sink or trash can each time. This ensures your space is clean, and that they don’t get lost or distracted along the way. You can even sit in the sink if there’s room, since there’s no way any human can miss the adorableness of a cat. Secondly, much like how you help clear the space to cook, you can do the same for cleanup. Swat egg shells and wrappers onto the floor, or use your tail to sweep away powders. Paper towels make a wonderful crinkly toy that you can claim upon discard. Just avoid messing your beautiful furs up!  

Be a natural timer.

This trick works best with meats. How many times have you been able to smell the delicious meat being cooked, knowing full well that your meal is done, only to have your human sit around for minutes more, making you wait? As a natural timer, you can fix that problem! Cats have a superior sense of smell, and by extension, knowledge of when food is cooked. As soon as your nose and tummy agree that the meat is cooked, let your human know! This can be done by sitting in front of the oven and yowling, rubbing against your human while purring and then running towards the oven, or by jumping on and off of your human repeatedly. This way, even if they forget to set a timer, or if they set the incorrect amount of time, you’ve got them covered. 

Test the finished product! 

The final- and best- step of helping in the kitchen is being able to test the finished product. As soon as temperature allows, go up to the food in question and give it a few nibbles. You can start slowly by licking it, or you can go for a large chomp. If neither of these options appeal to you, you can step on it and leave a paw print, or you can leave nose smudges on it. If you enjoy the food, do everyone else a favor and drag it over to share! That’s the greatest compliment you can give to a chef! 

Hopefully these tips and tricks make your time in the kitchen more enjoyable! Everybody needs help; now you can be the purrfect assistant to your humans cooking needs!

Purrs and furs,

Thunder K. Katt

 

17

Tummy Time with Thunder K. Katt

Greetings! Welcome to Tummy Time with Thunder! In today’s blog, I’m going to educate our humans on feline tummy facts- from digestion to fur, it’ll all be here! Before we get started, I must make a disclaimer for any kitties who’s humans have a human kitten- humans have a very weird idea of “tummy time”. It is not, in fact, a time where you place your human kitten on their tummy so they learn to crawl. I’m not pawsitive how this misconception became widespread, but I’ve had to break my humans of this habit- so I thought I’d let everyone else know prior to developing weird ideas. With that being said, let’s jump in so we can learn more wonderful facts about us already beautiful creatures!

First thing first: all cats love eating. My purrsonal motto is eat, nap, play. However, as with any creature, there are good things to feed your kitty, and foods that could harm us. Some treats to give us include fish (tuna needs to be given in limited quantities); chicken; beef; liver (in limited quantities); eggs; berries; bananas; melons; apples (make sure there are no seeds on the apple); sweet potatoes; carrots; lettuce; squash (including pumpkin); green beans; and zucchini. Foods you want to avoid giving your feline friend are lactose based foods (kittens being the exception; kittens need milk for the first three weeks of their lives); raw fish; bones; alcohol; stone fruits (such as peaches, cherries, apricots, nectarines, or plums); caffeine; citrus; grapes and raisins; garlic; onion; chocolate; potatoes; raw bread dough; macadamia nuts; mushrooms; fat trimmings; and xylitol (a sweetener found in some peanut butters, gums, and sodas). If you want to give your kitty a dairy like treat, opt for dairy flavored cat treats, or cat milk. Most cats do not have taste buds that can comprehend the sweet flavor, so don’t feel obligated to provide sweet foods for your cat unless they’ve established a liking for them. 

Cats are obligate carnivores, and should not fast (if anyone tries to get their cat to fast, that just seems evil. Mom let our dry food run out for a whole work shift one time, and we almost starved to death). Although cats can have some veggies and grains, their diets should consist primarily of meat. 

Now, I’m going to talk about the actual digestive system and process of us cats. Though our process is undoubtedly superior to humans, there are some intricacies that everyone should be aware of that I’ll highlight here. 

The digestive system of a cat consists of seven parts: the mouth; esophagus; stomach; duodenum (which is a fancy way of saying gallbladder, pancreas, and liver); small intestine; large intestine; and rectum. The duodenum absorbs what can not be digested through the stomach and intestines, including bacteria, fats, sugars, and proteins. These components are either stored and converted into insulin, or discarded as waste. The average time a cat takes to digest a meal is around 20 hours.

Cats don’t chew in a sense typical to humans; though our jaws can open much wider than a human jaw, it cannot move from side to side, an essential part to how humans chew. Instead, cats grab chunks of food with their tongues, and use their tongue and saliva to shred the chunks of food. Once the shredded food is in our tummies, our stomach acid is strong enough to dissolve bones; therefore, we mostly digest liquid. 

Cats are unable to synthesize certain required nutrients, including fatty acids, taurine, vitamin A, and vitamin D. Because of this, cats require a higher level of protein in their diets, because proteins break down into 11 essential amino acids, including taurine. A lack of taurine can lead to retinal degeneration and heart issues. 

Cats don’t have the ability to store carbohydrates like humans do. Because of this, crude fats, fatty acids, and fibers are vital to moving the digestive process along, including nutrient distribution. 

Cats are hunters, not scavengers. This means we prefer fresh foods, and why we turn our noses up at aged offerings. Additionally, cats are experts at knowing what nutrients their bodies need, and we will select or reject food based off of these needs. We’re not being finicky- we’re being healthy! 

The last (and best) part of my blog is going to be focusing on our beautiful tummies and furs! If a cat shows you their tummy, this means they trust you completely. The highest degree of this compliment is if we fall asleep tummy side up- this means we are so comfortable around you and our environment, that we trust you to keep us safe from any dangers- including protecting the vital organs that lay just beneath the surface of our tummy skins. Please keep in mind, even if a cat shows you their tummy, this does not mean they want tummy rubs! If you’re heart set on rubbing that furry tummy, please come in from the side, as a direct swoop down can mimic an attack to cats. 

You may have noticed a low hanging furry pouch from your cat’s tummy, near their hind legs. This isn’t a result of too many treats- this is called a primordial pouch. This pouch is made of excess skin and fat, and is used to not only store food, but can also provide extra protection, and facilitate stretching and movement. Breeds more likely to have these pouches are cats used to cold weather, and Pixie Bobs, Egyptian Maus, Persians, Japanese Bobtails, and Bengals. 

Like humans, cats can have different textures and lengths of furs on our tummies (as well as the rest of our body). Some cats have curly furs, while others have straight. Breed and length of fur contribute to whether or not your tummy furs curl or not; the longer the fur, the more likely you are to curl. Heat and humidity also contribute to this. 

The only time you should notice your cat losing tummy fur is if it’s excessively hot, if your cat is pregnant or lactating, or if your cat is aging (this typically happens between 10-15 years of age). If you notice fur loss outside of these reasons, or if your cat is losing fur rapidly or in patches, get your cat to a vet. You should never notice a bald or thin spot on your cat’s tummy. 

This concludes Tummy Time with Thunder! Hopefully you learned a little about our tummies, both the inside and out! And remember, if your cat doesn’t like tummy rubs, feel free to swing by Michigan; my sister, Gypsy, and I happen to love tummy rubs, and will take all you can give! 

Furs and purrs,

Thunder K. Katt.

39

Broken Routine –> Chaos

Everyone knows that we cats love our routines. Ours wasn’t perfect, but we were content. Now Mom has ruined it. She’s having an attack of some kind of nerve condition that won’t let her eat or talk. If she can’t eat, she can’t work. (We know. Usually people say they have to work to eat. She’s weird.)

 

She works overnight, so she’d feed us when she got home. No worries, right? She’s home, so the feeding stays the same. Wrong, She sleeps different hours now because of the medicine she’s taking, so no one can keep track of breakfast time. We’re pretty sure she’s trying to skimp on us though.

 

After we ate, the three of us would hang out on the sofa for a couple of hours while she did computer stuff. Then we’d all go up to bed. Now she can’t lie flat, so she has to sleep on the sofa. She’s downstairs ALL THE TIME. We’ve lost all our bed-warmer time. And the three of us can’t sleep comfortably on the sofa.

Our human brother would make dinner. Mom says he’s a really good cook. We’re not sure what she’s using to measure that. When Mom cooked we got to share meat and fish. He cooks with something called lentils a lot. They are NOT meat or fish. He uses quite a bit of chicken. But he cooks it in weird stuff.

It’s gotten worse since Mom can’t eat. It’s all mushy, soupy stuff. And the chicken is too small to pick out. More proof we’re starving because she can’t eat.

After dinner, the three of us would take a nap before she went to work. Now she goes back to the sofa and plays on her computer.

Our lives are a mess!

Ed. Note: Cat’s having an attack of trigeminal neuritis.It’s nothing serious despite the cats’ feelings about their situation.