Monday, September 26, 2016

September 2016

The Wilbourn Way Blog 

(aka Cats on the Couch)  
For a better view Click 

Dear Readers,

The WiFi Communicating Pet Treat Dispenser.

This WiFi monitor allows you to check in on your cat or other animal companion from anywhere at any time and remotely dispense preloaded treats. There is a lifetime guarantee.

Watch Out For That Damn Cat, Marcel Duchamp 

Duchamp had equally groundbreaking experiments in cubism and non-representationalism, but never quite achieved the success and recognition that his contemporary, Picasso achieved. He had real trouble making ends meet and had to look out for any chance to make a little cash. So he entered the poster contest sponsored by his local Ladies Auxiliary Home Safety Committee.

Nude Descending a Staircase was originally entitled Watch Out for That Damn Cat. However, the Ladies’ Auxiliary passed on it as did the usual run of critics and patrons of Duchamp’s other works. His poster did not place in the money.

(Cats Of The Masters, Michael Patrick)

Subscribe to Carole's free monthly Blog -- The Wilbourn Way

Russian Gent In A Peugeot Saves A Kitten From Death On The Highway

Mayor's Alliance Adoptapalooza In Union Square Park

Orion sent me to the Adoptapalooza with his surrogate robotic black cat.

I was available for Reiki treatments and to support and cheer on the many adoptees.

Louie is a love!

Take a look at some of the terrific dogs.

Mascot for this Adoptapalooza
This puppy is ready to go
I'm yours

Orion's Catitudes                                                                                                                     
(Orion, a recovering feral rescue gives his cat-speak and ©whisker waves on cat issues)

Horror Films
Orion thinks this kitty has had his fill of horror. Click here to see the video.

Blissful Moments
Ulla blisses out as she’s weighed, praised and adopted! 

This Myanmar kitty is blissed out by the vintage phone.  

Why Does My Cat Do That? 
Litter Box Tribulations
One of the most common concerns or conundrums in my Cat Practice is litter box issues.

Carpet Fixation
Coco loves that nip
Coco, a spayed, fourteen-year-old, decided to use the carpet for her litter box. One of my recommendations was to place wee wee/puppy pads in a second litter box. I explained that when she felt uncomfortable or anxious, she deliberately tinkled or defecated on a soft surface. This put her in the comfort zone that she experienced when she was nursed or/and in contact with her mother — even if it was short lived. Her recent vet visit was A-okay, so there wasn’t any related medical problem.
Tiger Lily

Tiger Lily, her companion, needed daily medication which also involved extra positive attention, so it was important to acknowledge Coco with a favorite past time so she could feel included. 

Coco is now on target with the litter box. I decided to cut up strips of an inexpensive rug instead of wee wee pads,” was Coco’s guardian’s message. “Coco’s definitely more relaxed since her session".

Wee Wee Pad Overload — Obnoxious Odor!
As I type, Oscar is asleep in his box as he listens to the music you sent us. We are very excited. Your solution to place the wee wee pads directly in his preferred litter box has been a fave. He only used the pads outside the box twice when those in his box were saturated. When I mentioned that we had to stop the transdermal dose of Prozac because he became too frantic, you suggested we speak to the vet about a liquid prozac that could be compounded into a tasty food mix by a pharmacist or to grind the pill into a small amount of his favorite food. Liquid prozac mixed in his food was the answer. Oscar has always been needy but wary of touch — except with our youngest daughter. Thanks again for your help. I will keep you posted on his progress. We will wait at least a month before we have our carpet professionally cleaned.
Love at first sight when she spotted Oscar for adoption

My Reaction:   
Oscar, this young neutered cat, has a very likable relationship with his companion cat Bruder and a family that truly loves him. 

His behavioral program, coupled with medication to treat his anxiety attacks should slowly give him the support he needs to chip away at his emotional and physical fragility which has wreaked havoc with him.

Holly and Buddy Acted Out Their Frustrations  
Holly about to make a high jump
As I hung out with my cat Orion, I thought about Holly and Buddy. “ A good prognosis,” I said out loud, and stroked Orion’s whiskers. I felt that their session would be the key to the solution of their major current issues.
Three weeks ago Holly had started to use soft objects, in particular the bed, as her litter box. 

Buddy was frequently aggressive or aloof with his guardian Carl. He preferred Rona, his other guardian, whereas Holly favored Carl. Although now in recovery, Holly’s incidents coincided with Carl’s surgery and other medical problems. Her “incidents” on their bed started when her guardians were away for the weekend.

Holly and Buddy, a young 10 month old, were Carl’s first cats. Rona had lived with cats in the country who spent most of their time outdoors. So this was a new chapter in their living situation.

I explained that Holly’s “incidents” were symptomatic of the separation anxiety she experienced when they were away for the weekend, and she mirrored Carl’s angst and discomfort related to his medical issues. She communicated her angst with her “deviant, un - catlike” incidents. Her bladder and rectum were her stress targets.
Buddy wrangles with his toy

Treatment Program for Holly’s Litter Box Lapses     
Some of my recommendations were:
  • Close the bedroom door for at least a month
  • Provide a second litter box with litter and paper towel strips
  • Praise both cats when they use the box
  • Carl should reassure the cats that he was in recovery. As he acknowledged this, he would feel better and Holly, especially, would pick up on his confidence.
  • Most of all he should engage in activities that would nurture him.
I gave Carl a short Reiki chair treatment to defuse stress and create balance in mind, body and spirit. The cats’ relaxed expression conveyed they received a contact high.
Reiki .... Read more

Blurred Boundaries — Uncomfortable Interactions
Carl had grown up with dogs, and I explained that Buddy was a cat who preferred to seek out attention when he wanted it, rather than to be sought after. Buddy felt threatened when Carl persisted in his attention to him. I told Carl to allow Buddy to make the overtures. Evidently, Buddy preferred Rona’s softer energy, which was fine, as Carl had Holly to shower attention on. Also, he may have blurred the boundaries with his overtures to Buddy — which added to Holly’s angst.

Progress Report:
All is well. My relationship with Buddy is totally in the comfort zone and Holly is litter box happy again. Thank you for your guidance, but there’s another issue,” said Carl. "Yesterday we took our guys to be bathed and to have their nails clipped. When they arrived home, the cats proceeded to hiss at each other."

Displaced or Re-Directed Aggression
I explained that their cats were disoriented and stressed by the new environment that was filled with other animals. Their reaction was to pass this discomfort on to each other. “Distract them with a loud exclamation or toss of a toy when, or before, they start to carry on,” I said. “In the future, it would be best to arrange for an in-home pedicure. A bath is not usually necessary for short-haired cats, but if they’re receptive, a daily brushing can be fun — especially, if you tell them how cool and handsome they are.”

Continuous Diarrhea And More  
Giardia persists  
Muji and Yayo at paws length
I adopted Yayo from a cat hoarder. I couldn’t resist this handsome, two year old, blind in one eye kitty. Kook was our only cat, and my roommate and I knew it would be okay,” said Meg. She went on to say that he came with giardia (One-celled organisms found in the small intestines of cats -- infectious, causes diarrhea and sometimes bloody stools). This was diagnosed and treated with oral medication. Since that attack, they have had him on a grain free diet. Yayo had recently urinated outside the litter box which was a new development. He was very friendly with Muji, whom they’d adopted as a kitten. But ever since Muji arrived, a year ago, Yayo no longer tucked into bed at bedtime. It was Muji who dominated the bed. Kook, cat number one, always preferred to sleep in different places.
Kook knows how to let go

Rap Music Can Release Some Fun Energy
Meg mentioned how Yayo was a constant talker and usually joined in when she rapped. Videos were her day job, but she was a rapper — a second profession — aka Uncle Meg. During the session, I requested that Meg give a sampling of her rapping. It was a fun release of energy for them.

Advice for Meg
I recommended that Meg should contact the vet to adjust Yayo’s diet and to arrange a possible vet visit. Clearly grain free food was not the answer for his continuous diarrhea, and this discomfort probably triggered discomfort with his bladder.

During the phone consult I had Meg interact with Yayo on her bed but included the other two cats in the conversation. “Tell Yayo he keeps the bed safe for all of you,” I said and explained that they would pick up on her relaxed body language and tone of voice. Repetition would create a positive Yayo association and acceptance of the bed.

Yayo’s Progress Report
Carole, I still put on the music you sent for them, and Yayo’s feeling a lot more comfortable. He's been coming on the bed again too, and even all three of the cats have been coming on the bed together and sleeping in the same area. I changed his food, and the vet did some blood tests. Giardia is still present, and Yayo is now on medication which should wipe out the parasite. Thanks again for your help.

It’s not unusual for giardia to hang on. Sometimes a cat can be a host, without becoming infected and can still infect other cats. Yayo was from a cat hoarder so it’s not surprising that he became infected with giardia.

Single Cat Syndrome -- Aggressive Cat Syndrome 

Life Before Des  
Xena has found her disciple in Des
When Kate contacted me five years ago, because her young cat Xena was beating her up, I told her Xena’s aggressive behavior was a symptom of the “single cat syndrome”.

Enter Des, a dapper, carefree, young, neutered male. No longer did Kate have to assume the unwanted role of Xena’s cat.

Scroll down to Introductions The Wilbourn Way.

She recently sent me a video of how Xena displayed her boredom and frustration with her cat bed before Des became the feline focus of her life.

A Kitten To Restore Tigger's Well being 
Tigger and Oreo at play Before
Loss wreaked sadness and aggressive behavior with Tigger when one of his guardians passed on. Tigger had rarely left his side up to the very end.  See March 2016 Blog. Scroll down to Loss Wreaks Sadness And Aggressive Behavior.

He had always been best of buds with his companion Oreo but now he started to chase and torment him.

Grief Therapy Session
Boo the matriarch
I did a family grief therapy session to defuse the sorrow and create peace and harmony. During the session Tigger hung out by Oreo — a major break-through. But a few weeks later, Tigger started a continuous yowl, while Oreo and Boo, the matriarchal kitty, kept their distance.  

Ronni, their guardian, felt Tigger needed a new major distraction to comfort him, and the family would mirror his relief.

Introduction of New Kitten
So I recommended she adopt a very playful, cat-oriented kitten of Tigger’s coloring and use The Wilbourn Way to introduce a new kitten. Also, she should give the kitten a name that made her happy whenever she spoke to the kitten. 
Oreo Takes Time Out

A few weeks later Ronni called me in a panic. Silly, the new kitten, has frightened my other cats. Although Tigger plays with her, sometimes he runs away and hides — Oreo too. Boo can’t be bothered."

Silly, the Tigger Look-Alike
So I did a session to evaluate the new relationship. 
Click here to see their interaction. Take a look at Silly, the new addition. Notice the way Tigger looks at her. I told Ronni that Silly was all that Tigger had yearned for. When he and Oreo scrambled to cover, it was to take a break. They needed their down-time.

By the way, Carole, I took your suggestion and got a hula hoop. Watch me spin.”
Looking good, Ronni. Now there’s fun and therapy for the whole family. See the video.

I ended the session with a short Reiki treatment for Boo to ease her arthritic limbs.  Reiki .... Read more   

A Free Consultation With The Cat Therapist    

Saturday, August 27, 2016

August 2016

The Wilbourn Way Blog 

(aka Cats on the Couch)  
For a better view Click 

Dear Readers,

The Animal Museum in Los Angeles will have a preview at its new location in the Arts District in downtown Los Angeles on October l.
The show embraces the human-animal bond.

Read more ..........

At The Algonquin
Matilda’s Annual Celebration and Feline Fashion Show to benefit the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s animals was a huge bonanza -- especially with the cash proceeds from the Silent Auction.
Zeus as Hamlet getting Reiki treatment

The feline fashion show scored many a #hash tag.

Orion's Surrogate -- The black robotic cat

My cat Orion’s surrogate for the benefit was his robotic, black cat, and he sent me to do Reiki treatments to balance the catmosphere.

I look forward to seeing you at the next Mayor’s Alliance Adoptapalooza for NYC’s Animals.  I will be available for Cat Speak and you can win a Cat Speak phone/video consult.

Sunday, September 18,  12 to 3 p.m
Union Square Park, NYC

Subscribe to Carole's free monthly Blog -- The Wilbourn Way

Carole's Take On Oscar The Cat Who ..... 

Tail End On The Many Meanings Of Meow
The Hunt, Angry Attack and Panic meows were translated in my July Blog to a client who was puzzled by his cat’s meows and had engaged me to do a therapy session to explain them. Here’s the final meow.
Alert Meow
Alert Meow
I asked Jim if he had any other thoughts about Sam’s meows?  He smiled and recalled how one day Sam stood in front of the closet, pawed at the door and let out short, continuous, meows.
“That’s a classic example of what I call the Alert Meow.  He wanted you to open the door,” I said.
Jim nodded and plopped Sam on his lap. Sam immediately started to purr and closed his  eyes.  
“My neighbor told me how one morning his older cat had perched herself on top of his bedroom dresser and wouldn’t stop meowing,” Jim said. "He tried to comfort her but no way would she listen. Then he heard a rustling from inside one of the drawers. He  pulled the drawer open and his younger cat jumped out."
“Good meowing on the part of that cat. The ‘tell tale’ meow,” I said.
“Well I now have a better understanding of Sam’s cat-speak,” said Jim. As he spoke, Sam let out a high pitched meow and jumped down from his lap.
“That’s the 'give me' meow,” I said.
“It sure is,” said Jim.
It was Sam’s vitamin snack time and the end of his session. I said good bye and told Jim to call and let me know how he made out with Sam’s meows. He nodded and gave his attention to Sam whose meows were now piercing and non-stop. Give me, give me. give me, was his message!

Lulu Would Not Stop Meowing
(Vocal Angst)
“Lulu’s meow was on automatic, continuous play when we adopted her at three months old,” said Reba. “She was fine when we slept, but at the start of any activity, her meow was constant. Unless we continuously interacted with her, she meowed."
Lulu Has To Go
Reba went on to say that after six months of Lulu’s continuous, sometimes plaintive meow, her husband’s tolerance caved. He felt that she had two companion cats to hang out with but didn’t,  her vet check was a-okay, she was already spayed -- there was nothing else they could do to make her happy. So Lulu must move on.
Lulu Moves On 
There was no way that Reba wanted to part with Lulu. Somehow she felt there was some kind of a kindred or at least adventurous bond between them. So Lulu was moved to a restored barn on their property, a few doors away from the house that Reba’s elderly, retired parents lived in. She visited her parents every day and had a writing room in the barn, so she could hang out with Lulu when she was there. During the day Lulu could play outdoors and run out her energy on their cat-friendly property. As Reba’s parents sat on their porch, Lulu was non-stop entertainment. But Reba’s mother had to keep her distance. She was severely allergic to cats.
Lulu's New Home

The Catmosphere Changes
Lulu’s move was five years ago. But now there was another hitch, Reba’s parents moved from their house to an assisted living residence and the barn would no longer be available. There would have to be a new plan.
To Brush Is To Ease
As I took Lulu’s case history, I suggested that Reba brush her as she mentioned it was Lulu’s absolute fave. Clearly it was.
Lulu Loves To Be brushed
Lulu’s  body rippled with loud, purrs as Reba brushed her, and Lulu’s relaxation music played in the background.
“That’s quite a powerful but melodious purr Lulu has, and she certainly sheds a lot of fur as you brush” I said. Reba nodded and told me how she could make a rug with Lulu’s fur. I recommended that she add some Omega 3 fatty acid to Lulu’s food. The lubrication would ease some  of Lulu’s shedding.
“ What a pretty and mellow kitty you are,” I said and thanked Lulu for being such a good listener.
“Yes, Lulu is usually meow-mute when she’s the center of attention," said Reba as she stroked Lulu’s head and her purrs chimed in.“So what’s your diagnosis of my Lulu’s meow chatter?”
Lulu’s Diagnosis
"Separation Anxiety and the Single Cat Syndrome are the key elements to Lulu’s unacceptable, deviant behavior,” I said and reminded Reba that when they adopted Lulu, she was separated from her male littermate.
“ But she had our two cats to keep her company,” said Reba.
“Yes, but her bond with her baby brother was Lulu’s emotional catnip,” I said and went on to say "Lulu becomes easily overstimulated. Her meow kicks in at the start of activity -- a flashback to her anxious muscle memory when she was separated from her baby brother. She relives that trauma -- PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) -- unless she’s distracted with direct attention and/or the opportunity to safely run around outdoors."
“I understand that she’s anxious, but what’s the solution? A kitten? And if it worked out, where would they live -- with my home not an option?"
Lulu’s Treatment Plan
** Play Lulu’s therapeutic music link to relax her and recreate the feelings of her session. Give her tight hugs to release her pent-up energy. Animated animals on the computer might intrigue her.
** Adopt a very cat-oriented male kitten, with Lulu’s coloring or that of her former baby brother who will become Lulu’s fervent fan. (Refer to the Wilbourn Way To Introduce A New Kitten in my July/August 2013 Blog or my books on Amazon.)
OR there might be someone you know who has a kitten who needs a mentor where Lulu can have access to her outdoor cat-friendly activity. She may even decide she prefers the kitten’s company, and the outdoors is but a happy memory.
OR although your parents are cat-lovers, but your mother is allergic to cats -- there are remedies such as allergy shots, also known as immunotherapy. Lulu could be kept in a special part of the house where she had access to the outdoors. Your mother would be able to continue her relationship with Lulu outdoors as she did before.
** There are also anti-anxiety remedies and drugs that will ease Lulu’s angst, That can be considered at a later date.
We talked about how Lulu could remain on the property she loved so much with the assistance of high-tech electro magnetic cat houses and cat-specific props -- but that would be a last resort.
I ended the session with a distant Reiki treatment where I did the  given mental symbols in my head to create balance in mind, body and spirit. As Reba drove me to the bus, I told her that I noticed Lulu’s breathing was rapid, but that could be indicative of her highly sensitive nature. Lulu’s recent exam and tests were unremarkable.

“I’ll keep in touch about Lulu’s progress,” said Reba. “By the way, Lulu didn’t appear at the window when we left which was a good sign. She was eased and comforted by her session. Thank you for that.”

Orion's Catitudes                                                                                                                     
(Orion, a recovering feral rescue gives his cat-speak and ©whisker waves on cat issues)

Orion sent me to review the preview of the revival of Cats on Broadway.

His feeling was that no matter how outstanding the performers were, they could only be “wannabe cats”. So with that in mind, as my sister and I walked out on the original production in ’82, I was able to stay to the end and appreciate the performance.

 ©whisker waves

This food ball appealed to Orion’s taste of fitness.

Hide your cat’s meals for exercise and fun. A really interesting article from the New York Times.   Read More 

Orion gets scads of bliss from his new dust buster  


This bodega kitty gets his bliss from a feather.

Tiger's Talk Is In The Baby Subtext
“Ever since my wife and I moved, our cat,Tiger, has become more vocal,” said Peter, one of my trainers at the Apple Store. “Could he be bummed out from the move?”
Tiger's New Digs
I told Peter that a move was always a major transition. Tiger’s “talk” was also a mirror of their reaction to the culture shock. His reaction was to vocalize; a healthy way to react to the transition.
Peter nodded but went on to say that they moved three months ago. Whenever Tiger meows, they acknowledge him and that’s the end of it, but he wondered if there was another reason for Tiger’s chattiness.
Cat Sense
“We haven’t made a formal announcement, but my wife is seven months pregnant,” Peter said. “ Do you think Tiger suspects there’s going to be an addition?”
“Oh my cat goddess,” I said with a smile and congratulated Peter on this auspicious occasion. "Yes indeed," I told Peter and went on to explain how Tiger was affected by the preparations and furnishings for the baby’s arrival. Tiger was also sensitive to the changes in his wife’s body, her breathing, moods and Peter’s increased, caring interactions with her.
That's Tiger's Ball
Keep Tiger In the Loop
“Any suggestions?” said Peter.
The more they acknowledged Tiger, the better he’d feel. With tongue in cheek, they could tell him, that they took his suggestion, and they’d soon be a family of four. Tiger wouldn’t understand their words, but he’d download his connection from their tone and body language. He’d feel in control instead of “out of control”.
I referred Peter to a CNN online article I was quoted in and told him that I was reminded of a Skype consult I did to treat a British Moogie where a baby was on the way. Read more. Scroll through June 2013 Blog.

“By the way, you can always adopt a new companion for Tiger as a major distraction,” I said with a chuckle as I tossed a cat toy to Peter.

Peter did a thumbs up and told me how the ball I’d given Tiger was such a fave of his.

A Free Consultation With The Cat Therapist