16

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?

Large Alligator Strolls Across Lakeland Trail

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.

Monster alligator rattles golfers on Georgia course

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.

23

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.

Partnerships for sustainability: let's learn from the plover bird and the crocodile | Steward Redqueen

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?

23 Aussies Yet To Realise They Live In The Land Of Nope | Meanwhile in australia, Big animals, Australian crocodile

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.

A nice cat massage | Massage funny, Massage, Massage envy

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.

24

Cat Forum: Interview with Twilight and Sushi


Greeting furry felines (and their non-furry companions). We have a special treat for you. We want to introduce you to two of our newest friends, Twilight and Sushi. They are the owners of the blog How to Train Your Humans. We’d like to nominate that for the best blog title ever! The blog is cat-tastic too, so head over to take a look.

The interview starts with an introduction, then moves on to questions.


 Twilight:  I’m Twilight, and I was born in the Can Opener’s back yard while Shrimp was still alive. 
For the first 6 months I was still feral- living in the back yard with the rest of the litter and my human was taking care of us. She looked after us and tried to keep us warm in the cold, wet, winters and cool and fed the rest of the time. 
When we were weaned from our Mother, she found homes for my 3 sisters – (one Siamese like me, but not as cute), and two solid black kitties)- but I had wandered off and couldn’t be found when the person came to take my sisters home. Shrimp had already been the established queen of the house, and she used to hiss at me when I came to the back door with my mom to eat. My human would gently tell her to leave us alone and she made sure Shrimp never got the pleasure of shredding me.  
My mom was still so feral, at that time, my human had to put food down and disappear before mom would go near the back door to eat- and if anyone was there she would watch warily from under a bush until the coast was clear.  The human had called a TNR cat rescue place and they trapped Mom and got her checked out by the vet, spayed, and gave her shots- and they tried for a month to find her a home. But Mom wouldn’t have it. So they brought her back to our yard and my human still takes care of her. Now, she will sit on the back porch, and let my human put a dish down in front of her (within inches of her) and then she eats and no longer runs away. But she still won’t come inside- even though its always wet and cold out.
But while we were still baby kittens nursing, when my mom would go hunting – the human used to pick me up and clean out my eyes because they were all icky- so I learned not to be afraid of her. So when my sisters were adopted and I was gone, I came back about a week later because there was a bad rainstorm and it was freezing outside and dark, and there had been inches of rain nonstop for those several days, I was so wet and cold and my fur was pink from the bloody flea bites. A neighbor saw me and brought me to the human, and she thanked him and brought me inside (Shrimp protesting constantly)- Shrimp was really mad at the human, but she told Shrimp she wasn’t going to put “this poor baby” back out in the rain and cold. Then she clipped my claws and bathed me in warm water with flea shampoo and rubbed me with coconut oil and declared me part of the family. I haven’t spent a night outside since. I instantly became spoiled and pampered even though Shrimp objected. 
Shrimp eventually got used to me (she was pampered too)- and we even got to be friends. But one morning Shrimp woke up and wouldn’t eat. And she wasn’t breathing right. We took her to the vet hospital, but there wasnt’ anything they could do to save her. Our human was heart broken- I’d never seen her cry before and I thought she’d never stop crying. I had to do something to help.  
So I put a call out on ‘Catbook’ to find another tortoiseshell kitty for my human. She had always said she loved Torties because of their cattitude and quirkiness, so I thought if I could find her another Tortie, it would be like giving her Shrimp back and then she’d stop crying.
Then I heard about Sushi so I made sure the human’s grown critters found out about her because I knew I’d need their help to bring her here.


Sushi: Hi! I’m Sushi! I’m so happy! I was once very happy as a kitten, but when I got older, my previous human didn’t want me anymore. She wanted to travel to far away places and I was often left alone for a really, really long time- or, left with people who didn’t really want me there and didn’t talk to me or play with me or cuddle me. I was the only kitty, so I didn’t even have sisters or brothers, or furry friends to keep me company. And, you know, you can only get so much entertainment out of a stuffed mouse and empty toilet paper roll, and bored spiders.
One day I heard my human talking with a family member and she was saying she didn’t want me anymore and was going to have me put down! I wanted to LIVE! I’m a good kitty, and I’m not sick or anything (but I am old)- I just wanted a place to feel loved and safe and wanted… 
And then the family member my previous owner had talked to decided she couldn’t just let me get put down. She took me to her house and tried her best for 8 months to find me a home. Nobody wanted to take me because I’m not a kitten- and I’m old. 
But right when I had lost all hope, the phone rang – and excitement rose in my cute little kitty heart as I heard the end of the conversation that said…”Oh! She WANTS HER? Great! I’ll get her and her things together and meet you after work!” The next thing I knew, I was being put in a carrier (which actually scared me a little)- and put in a car, and after a log trip, I heard a very friendly voice comforting me- it was the daughter of the woman who wanted to keep me! 
I only know her as “The Critters’ Mom” (that’s what Twilight calls her)- but Twilight had explained to me that she had heard about me and wanted me to meet her Can Opener so she set the whole thing up and then the Can Opener’s Grown Critter brought me to her house. Ever since I got here, I’ve been so happy and pampered! I’m not afraid and lonely any more!! And by the way, this November I turned 13 years old! 
Now I spend my nights cuddled up next to the Can Opener, all tucked in and warm instead of by myself. In the mornings, I’m the Can Opener’s lap kitty while she has her coffee and prays- then I play with Twilight and the little Critters until they go home and I’m brushed and pampered! 

Is there an alpha cat or are you guys more “Live and let live”?
Sushi: We both are typically very easy going cats. Twilight would rather play than fight, so she isn’t a challenger by any means. She just wants to get love and play. She’ll hide if she feels threatened. But since coming here, I’ve become an Alpha Cat! It has taken me 13 years to get this happy, and NOBODY is going to steal my human’s affection or take my place!

Sushi, does it bother you being named after a food?

Sushie No, it doesn’t make me nervous being named after food- I LOVE FOOD!!! (I’m 16.9 lbs of lovable cattitude).

Do you go outside or is it strictly Cat TV?
Twilight: Oh, no cat tv for me! I’d much rather be out hunting mice, chasing ducks and squirrels and fishing in the stream behind my house! I also love gardening in the neighborhood flower beds, annoying birds, and harraasing the psycho kitty next door.

Sushi: CAT TV, BABY! By the time the grand-critters go home, I’m all played out! (popcorn, please).


Have your humans been driving you nuts since the lockdown?

Sushi:  Are you kidding me? I’ve had so much cuddles and attention now, I’m going to hold them “Locked down” forever!

Twilight: Oh, my Can Opener’s cuddling gets a little annoying after 18 hours of following me around with a camera- but as long as she remembers how to open the cans and the back door, I’m good.

What is your favorite thing to do?

Twilight: Present the human with freshly caught mice. I just love her reaction- she loves it so much, she just can’t contain herself. Especially when I present them to her for breakfast in bed!

Sushi:  My favorite thing to do is cuddle in the human’s lap in the mornings when she has coffee and prays. It’s a pawsome way to fall asleep (my next favorite thing to do)!


Do you have any favorite Human food?

Twilight: Yes! I love REDI WHIP and egg, and salmon!

Sushi: Tuna!! and Chicken- and CHEESE!! 


How do you stay warm in the winter? 

Twilight:  Well, I got used to being cold when I was feral- I don’t like it, but I just go out and conquer the world anyway, then come inside and cuddle up on my bed (which is conveniently placed in a nook on the human’s desk right under the heater)!

Sushi: I go out and sit in the sunbeams until I use the neighbor’s fence post for a scratcher, then snack on a few bugs, then come in and snuggle up on the couch with the Can Opener. And if she tries to get up before I’m ready, I growl and hiss at her!


We heard you are related to Shrimp (of Hairball Express fame). Does it bug you that humans seem to find that important?

Twilight:  Oh no- not at all- Shrimp wasn’t happy when I first came along, but we (secretly) became friends. And now, it’s all about cute little ME -(Okay, Sushi too).

Sushi: Oh no, it doesn’t bother me. It’s very flattering to know that Twilight and the humans sought me out because I would be another kitty like her! She was the model of the purrfect Tortie- in fact, The Can Opener says since I’ve come here, it’s like Shrimp came back from Heaven- only now (she’s a “JUMBO SHRIMP!’ Mol! 


Is there anything else you’d like to say?

Twilight: Yes,would you open the door?

Sushi: Yes, I’m hungry. It’s been a whole 15 MINUTES since I ate!

Hope you enjoyed it.

Merry Christmas - Huntingdon Health and Rehabilitation Center


Editorial Note: Sincere apologies for being late. We had many technical difficulties with the several-month-old Chromebook. The last issue was with WordPress magically turning our classically edited post into a block edited post when we added the pictures. It looks OK at our end. Hopefully it gets to you in the same condition.

29

It’s Winter: Do You Have a Happy Cat?

Cats in Winter

It’s that time of year again in Michigan. Snowy, cold, and generally unpleasant. We know some of you are in the same situation, so we decided to research the best ways to keep us safe and warm in the winter. Please share this with your human.

Let's Talk About Ways To Keep Outdoor And Feral Cats Safe In The Winter -  CatTime

Yes, we get cold. Humans can get a little annoying about this point. Even with fur coats, most of us have a limit to how cold it can get before we feel it. If it feels cold to you, it probably feels cold to us too. And please don’t turn the heat down too far when you go to work.

Keeping Cats Warm in Winter | ThriftyFun

Ways to keep us warm:

  • Cuddle with us.
  • Give us a blanket or cat bed in a warm place. Older cats may need a heated bed to deal with arthritis.
  • Feed us nutritious food to keep our fur thick and fluffy.
  • Keep the house warm.

Cat Relaxing In Front Of The Fireplace

Don’t let us get too close to the fireplace or space heater. We are creatures of comfort and love being warm in the winter. But singed fur doesn’t smell good. And we could knock over the heater. Some of us are not as careful as we could be. (We are NOT clumsy.)

Scratching | Petfinder

We get dry skin in the winter, just like you. Check our skin once in a while, and make sure you brush us. If we are scratching or biting a lot, it probably means dry skin. If you’re concerned, call the vet.

Welcome to our Mobile Friendly Pet Sitting WebsiteThere is a BUG in my  house! - Pet Sitting and Dog Walking in Cary, Durham, Raleigh NC, Wake  Forest, Chapel Hill, Garner, Apex, Brier

We can get fleas in the winter. Don’t stop whatever precautions you are currently using.

Is Your Cat Sleeping Too Much? Winter Could Be The Cause - CatGazette

It’s normal for cats to sleep more in the winter. Our internal clocks are guided by the sun, the same as yours. (We just admit that we want more sleep.)

Cat Standing In The Snow | Know Your Meme

Don’t forget us when you buy stuff in preparation for a storm. Make sure there’s enough food, treats, and litter. We get really cranky if we don’t eat.

Does Your Cat Have a Drinking Problem? - Catster

We still get thirsty. The air is drier, and we like our water. We also get cranky if we don’t drink.

Why Keeping Outdoor Cats Warm in Winter is So Important

Don’t forget if you let kitty go outside. We can get frostbite on our noses, ears, and paws. And it hurts. And don’t let us out if it gets extremely cold or a storm is coming. Yes, we will complain.

How to Care for Feral Cats During the Winter

Don’t forget the cats who live outside. If possible, set up a warm place for them to use. Provide food and water in somewhere sheltered; some place other critters can’t get at if possible. And check the water frequently to make sure it isn’t frozen.

Here's Why You Should Spend More Time Cuddling With Your Cats

Finally, don’t forget the extra cuddles! We can warm you up too.

How to keep outdoor dogs and cats warm in the winter - ExpressNews.com

Pictures courtesy of Google Images.

 

 

23

Cat Etiquette for Humans – Part 2 (Food)

Our good friend (and part owner of our human sister) Thunder enjoyed last week’s post. However, she feels that we neglected the role that food plays in human/cat etiquette. Therefore, she has written a follow-up post to rectify the situation.

Grey and white cat sniffing the meat grinder. | Homemade cat food, Homemade  cat, Cat food

Allow your cat to sniff everything. This ensures she gets to choose according to her wishes, not yours.

What to Do If Your Cat Is Obsessed With Human Food - Archie Cat

Just like humans request samples, kitties may also want to try a food before committing to it. I’ve learned that humans put tasty foods, like cheese, on yucky foods, like potatoes, and it can be deceptive. Therefore, samples are necessary.

He REALLY wants a bagel : aww

If your cat is sharing with you, such as a bagel with cream cheese or a forkful of chicken, allow Kitty to finish licking or nibbling before removing the item and taking a giant human bite for yourself. My dad did this with a bagel and cream cheese once, and I was depressed for the rest of the day.

24 Human Foods Cats Can Eat + Foods Cats Should Avoid! | Foods cats can  eat, Human food, Pureed food recipes

Do not mock us if we choose to go for a veggie option (peas) or sweet (ice cream) option. First of all, cats are masters at knowing what’s best for their nutritional needs. (Scientific articles relating such information have been published – see the Catster website). 

Second of all, if it’s good enough for humans, it must be good enough for kitties. After all, even our canned and dried foods are made with human-approved ingredients.

And if humans can be in the mood for these things, why can’t kitties?

The CAT thread. - Page 4 - Pelican Parts Forums

Tear or cut up anything we decide to eat into appropriate-sized pieces. We have small teeth and mouths, and can’t stuff a whole turkey leg in the way humans can. It’s frustrating when we’re given a delicious treat, only to have to abandon it minutes later because we can’t properly eat it.

Japan's Cat Island Asks Internet For Food, Gets More Than They Can Store |  Bored Panda

In the interest of food bank donations (which rise this time of year), I’ve decided to share this tip: 

Donating to the less fortunate is wonderful thing to do, and cats across the world support this gesture wholeheartedly (assuming you don’t donate our treats.) However, when donating, leave the empty boxes around the house alone.

Nothing is more heartbreaking than a cat spotting an empty box, planning to use it as a cozy nap spot, and marking it with your furs only to have a human kick you out. Then they ruin the furs you’ve carefully shed in there and fill it with junk before removing said box from home. Remember, bags work just as well and typically aren’t as cat-friendly. So it’s a win-win.

Dear humans, I hope this has been helpful.

Thunder K. Katt

Pictures courtesy of Google Images (except me)

22

Snoops and Kommando: Cats and COVID

How to take care of your human: Tips & Tricks - Lolcats - lol | cat memes |  funny cats | funny cat pictures with words on them | funny pictures | lol cat  memes | lol cats

We are using cute pictures to go along with this post because we like them, not because they have anything to do with the topic.

JUST STOPPING BY TO SAY HI | Cats and kittens, Say hi, Hi quotes

Greetings from Snoops and Kommando. This is a pretty strange topic for us to be commenting on. In fact, we try to ignore the human world as much as possible. However, our human has forced this topic upon us.

Paperwork -

She has been sick for a couple of weeks. Finally she went and had one of those virus tests. The doctor thinks she has it. She might never know. It seems that where we live the results have to be sent to the State department of health who then calls. Only humans would come up with a silly process like that.

sharing is caring - cats eating ice cream | Meme Generator

It was really nice having her home at first, but we are getting tired of it. She isn’t sick enough to be in bed all the time, but she’s really boring. She’s taking up space on our sofa. And we’re not sure about the kibble budget since she’s not working.

May 2015 – Journey of a MOOCer

Why are we talking about her when we are usually the center of attention? We wanted to make sure she wasn’t going to make us sick. And the news is pretty comforting, although there are a few things we want to pass along.

Cats and the coronavirus quarantine – memes on the web – Cat in the Box LLC

Can Cats get COVID-19?

Apparently the virus really likes humans. They say that humans can pass this thing around easily. Luckily, we have superior immune systems. There have been a few cases in domestic cats, but we seem to be more or less safe from it.

24 Cats Who Are So Tired, They Don't Give a Darn

Does it Make Cats Really Sick (like some of the humans)?

There have been very few cases to study, but it seems to be similar to a common cold. The virus stayed in the upper respiratory system and did not go into the lungs. The cats all made a full recovery in less than 2 weeks.

During the 1918 Flu Epidemic, Pet Parents Put Masks on Their Cats - Atlas  Obscura

How do Cats get Sick?

So far, the cats have have caught the virus from their humans. However, the scientists think that cat-to-cat transmission is possible. So if you have a sick friend, be sure to wear a mask and keep your distance.

Felix...he thinks I've neglected him if I'm not constantly petting him! |  Cute animals, Cats, Cute cats

Do We Need to Avoid Our Human?

We don’t recommend you totally avoid your human if they are sick. However, someone else should feed you (and take care of you) as much as possible. If you only have one human, it shouldn’t be a problem. As we said, the virus is very rare in cats. And no human has gotten COVID (or many other viral diseases) from a cat.

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

Do We Need to be Tested?

There is a test for pets, but you really don’t need it unless you are sick with a respiratory problem and have been close to someone with COVID. If you don’t have symptoms, there is no reason to think your human gave it to you. There is no routine testing for pets, and your vet will have to check local regulations before testing.

cute cat washing hand | Kittens cutest, Cat pics, Cute baby animals

Once again, cats have proven their superiority to humans. However, if your human is sick, remind them to wash their germy hands a lot.

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

Pictures courtesy of Google Images