Thursday, April 26, 2018

April 2018

The Wilbourn Way Blog 

(aka Cats on the Couch)  

Dear Readers,

** Cat Lady Continues To Be A Dictionary Accepted Word
It recently made the cut for Merriam Webster and The cat lady stereotype started in the 1800’s and boomed in the 1990’s.

** Cage Angst
Cage angst causes many shelter cats to act aggressively. 
Before Cat Town, many cats were never adopted. Read more

** Adoptapalooza — Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals

Please join me and Orion’s robotic cats. I will be there to offer Reiki and behavioral tips for the adoptees.  Read more
Adopt Me

And Me ...

** The Tender Side of Edward Albee
I recently saw Albee’s play “Three Tall Women” and was reminded of his note of thanks.

** Kitty To The Rescue
A little boy was crying his eyes out on the subway. His young mom was overly worn out, so I took out my kitty shaped mirror, flashed it at the little boy, and he was kitty-focused -- tearless. His mom smiled and smiled. #Me too.  

** Did you know that a Cheetah does not have retractable claws?

** Buddy The First Seeing Eye Dog
On May 25, 1927, Buddy, a German Shepherd became the very first guide dog for Morris Frank. Today, there are many animals that offer service to people living with disabilities.

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

Wet, Piddled On Paws After A Mis-Step In The Litter Box
Hot Rod recovers from his mis-step
(Litter Box Issues)
When Hot Rod came out of his litter box with a down-in-the-whiskers look at his paws, Doris noticed they looked a little wet.  And they were. 
His best bros are there for him
Somehow he had made a mis-step in the litter — smack into his piddle-puddle. Anyway, she wiped his paws off with a wet towel. Hot Rod wasn’t too happy, but he tolerated the clean-up and pawed off with a droopy tail to join his companions. Doris made light of it. She realized he was confused and maybe even humiliated. When it happened again, she knew Hot Rod was over the edge.

Cat-ch 22 — Tilt of the Litter Box
That evening she saw him in action. As he squatted she noticed the box slightly tilted, and a repeat as he made his exit. Somehow his balance was off. Hot Rod had recently gained weight because of medication to ease a medical issue. The medication also stimulated his appetite. It was a Cat-ch 22. A larger, sturdier litter box was an easy solution.

Hot Rod’s Cat-ch 22 Resolved
The next morning, there was a download of emotional and physical catnip. Doris received a text from the vet — Hot Rod’s latest blood results were A-Ok -- Paws Up. Now his medication could be slowly tapered. With less medication, Hot Rod’s appetite would slowly return to normal, along with his weight. In the meantime, Doris would provide him with a towel wipe-off, coupled with a hug. The tilt and wet paws would be deleted. Hot Rod’s balance would be restored. No more Cat-ch 22’s. 

A ball for a diversion

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

Orion’s whiskers did a super stretch for Dante as I gave Adam a Reiki chair treatment to calm his mind, body and emotional well-being. 

Dante reclaims Adam's lap -- Click Here

Adam was having major transitions in his health and work schedule and Dante and his two companions mirrored Adam’s stress. Their reaction was to keep their distance. This saddened Adam. They all felt ghosted — abandoned.  Reiki was the “tie to bind”.  As Adam relaxed, his three cats now mirrored Adam’s bliss.  Click Here to see Dante and Bello chill out and Here to see Dante waiting for his chin chuck.

Bello and Caro feel the glow
There was a time when Dante terrorized his two companions. But that was now history. (See Feb. 2015 Blog —Scroll down to Dante Forgives)  

Other Faves Of Orion

Balancing act

Maisie considers toy therapy
Will Maisie Accept A New Companion?
(New Kitten Introduction)
Maisie greeted me at the door with a relaxed tail twirl and a couple of head bumps. What a cool intro! I was there to do a session to evaluate the possibility of a future companion for Maisie — a senior cat of eleven years.

“She’s our only cat, and a perfect cat,” I was told by Jane who contacted me.
“Thirteen years ago you helped us with our unforgettable cat Gracie. We like to think she sent us Maisie,” said Jane. She went on to say that her daughter, Emily, who was now thirteen, wanted another cat. Although she and Maisie were very tight, Emily thought it would be fun to have another cat. But what about Maisie? Would she bond with another cat?

Maisie Is Such A Nurturer
As I watched Maisie work out at her post, play with the toys I gifted her and look toward the iPad as the volume of the music changed, I noticed she didn’t miss a beat. She was so very present. I saw too how her whiskers plumed when she looked Emily’s way, and her eyes focused on Emily as she left for her ballet lesson.
“Maisie’s such a nurturer.” said Jane. “She hangs out with Emily when she comes home from school. Later she joins my husband in his study. When it comes to bedtime, she really spreads the wealth. She beds down with Emily for a while and caps off the night with me and my husband."

Maisie nuzzles the feathers -- a bird or kitten substitute
“She is clearly a first class nurturer,” I said, as Maisie gently nuzzled the feathers of one of the toys. (Click Here for the video). Certainly, they were a bird substitute, but also the soft feathers brought out her maternal instincts, despite the fact she was spayed. Although not sexually inclined, Maisie was still very sensual.

Not A Maisie Must Have
“So do you think Maisie would do okay with a new companion?” said Jane.
I told Jane that because Maisie did not exhibit any frustration issues of the single cat syndrome and was such a contented cat, a companion was not a “Maisie Must Have”. But she would probably do okay if the newbie was the right match. A young, confident, very playful kitten who preferred cats to people would be the easiest match for Maisie to accept and would be in sync with her role as nurturer. The kitten didn’t have to be gender specific, but I felt a male would be best for Maisie.

The Key To A Successful Match
“And what about the introduction? I know you have specific intro’s for different situations,” said Jane.  I nodded and gave Jane some of my major recommendations —
  • Arrange for an escort (someone Maisie doesn’t know) to bring in the newbie kitten.
  • The key to a successful match was for Maisie to bond with the kitten first. This way Maisie would feel and actually experience that the kitten was dependent on her. 
  • Except for practical purposes such as feeding and the kitten’s safety, the kitten is invisible until ten days from the day that Maisie curls up with or grooms the kitten, so the kitten is dependent upon Maisie for interaction and affection.
“Mercy,” said Jane, before I could continue, “That may be a game changer, especially for Emily and my husband. I’ll clue them in tonight.”
“You could also have them take a look at my July/August 2013 Blog — Scroll down to The Most Perfect Match — New Kitten Intro)

Maisie On Cue
“I noticed how Maisie returned from the bedroom as you gave me your recommendations and stretched out before you on the carpet,” said Jane. “She was right on cue.”
I laughed and sprinkled some more catnip on the tissue paper for Maisie as Maisie dived in, and I said good bye.
The crinkle of the paper, the nip and feathered ball inspire Maisie
Match-Maker Time
“We’re all in!” was Jane’s next text. “We can follow your kitten intro, and would appreciate any recommendations of a compatible rescue kitten for Maisie.” I texted Jane that I would be on the look-out. The role of cat match maker has always been like a whiff of catnip for me.

Hamlet blissfully zones out during his session

Hamlet's Hamlet   
(Feline Greeter at the Algonquin Hotel)

Hamlet zones out during his Reiki session as he sends cat power to mothers at the Algonquin and everywhere. 

Read more  -- (Scroll down to Hamlet’s Hamlet)
A break before resuming his 24/7 gig. Click Here

Rainy Was Left Behind
Rainy home alone
When Rainy’s elderly guardians were placed in a nursing home that wasn’t animal companion friendly, Rainy a fourteen-year-old neutered male was left in their co-op apartment. A kindly neighbor was caring for him until he went to his new home. But when that home fell through, Rainy’s future became a gigantic question mark.

A Ray of Hope
Three weeks went by. Another week, and it would be a month that Rainy lived alone. Finally a ray of hope arrived. Justin, a veterinarian friend of my sister Gail in Los Angeles, thought he might know of a home for Rainy. A client’s senior cat passed on -- a mellow hunk of a cat, very similar to Rainy, and the client missed her late cat. She found her heart and home so empty now. She would adopt Rainy if we could get him to Camden, Maine. I happened to be flying to Maine the next weekend. My arrival city was Bangor, en route to North Harbor. Camden was nearby.

Rainy En Route To His New Home
Dr. Blake (aka Justin) arranged for one of his technicians to meet me at the airport and she would drive Rainy to his new forever home. I called the airlines and reserved a space for Rainy with me in the cabin. As Rainy’s size would weigh me down, and my discomfort would make him uncomfortable, a Sherpa Carrier on Wheels was the solution. Rainy had had a recent exam, and so his papers were current for the airlines.  
Ready to travel
The morning of the flight a car service drove me out to fetch Rainy. George, the neighbor, met me in the lobby, and I popped Rainy in his Sherpa, lined with strips of paper towels in case Rainy had to relieve himself. 

Security Issues
Shortly after I entered the terminal, the driver caught up with me. “You forgot this,” he said, as he handed me the pillowcase I had used to wrap around Rainy when I put him in his Sherpa. I thanked him, slipped it into the pocket of Rainy’s Sherpa and was glad I wouldn’t need it again. When we finally reached security, I was told I would have to remove Rainy from his bag so it could go through x-ray and I would have to “carry Rainy through”.
“But can’t you check it manually? My cat will freak out, he’s very heavy and he might take off,” I said.
I was told, “Do this or no go!”

Love That Pillow Case  
What to do? The pillow case!! Thank the Cat Goddess for that driver. I reached for the pillowcase, unzipped the Sherpa, talked to Rainy and wrapped him in the pillowcase. I continued to relax my body, breathed freely and told Rainy how good he was. A very kind security person held the lid of Rainy’s Sherpa open, and I slid Rainy into the pillowcase. As I thanked him and walked away, he yelled, “Didn’t I see you on Animal Planet? Your hand was in a bandage." I smiled and told him I’d broken my thumb, but it was all better.

Rainy Lucks Out
The plane arrived on time without incident. We deplaned after a smooth landing, and Dr. Blake’s technician met us at the gate. I told her to have Rainy’s new guardian start him off in a small room with his creature comforts. Once he was comfy with that space, she could slowly introduce him to the rest of her home.

Rainy settles in
Dr. Blake phoned to say Rainy settled right in, and he’s now a permanent bedtime companion for his new guardian.

A Free Consultation With The Cat Therapist    

Saturday, March 31, 2018

March 2018

The Wilbourn Way Blog 

(aka Cats on the Couch)  

Dear Readers,

California May Ban Cosmetics Tested On Animals
Cruelty-free products are available as an option but  ..….. 

March For Our Lives
As we marched along the New York streets and chanted “Never Again” at this gun-control march, I felt at last there was hope. These teenagers have the passion and the personal experience to stay engaged and continue to be the catalysts to bring about the best change.

** A Cat Flip Acrobat celebrates happiness this holiday weekend

** A Unque LED Nite Lite
Light up your Life with your Cat-son-alized Led Nite Lite.   Read more

Denzel & Sophie, all lit up on a Nite Lite
Denzel & Sophie, my Orion's cousins 

David Bowie At The Brooklyn Museum
A stunning exhibit! We were given headphones for the 36 complete songs.  Read more
With Bowie’s song Cat People (Putting Out Fire), the title song of the film Cat People, cat lovers consider Bowie one of their own.
David Bowie's cat
Ziggy Star Dust has always been one of my faves — probably because a couple of decades ago I adopted a feral black kitten for Sunny-Blue, my recovering attack cat. It was the night of a party for David Bowie which was held at a cool Japanese Restaurant where this kitten was in temporary residence. Anyway, I named him Ziggy-Star-Dust, and “long tale” shortened, took him home to Sunny, and theirs became the “relationship of relationships” — best bros forever.
Best Bros forever -- Ziggy & Sunny
They lived together for eight years until Sunny passed on of renal failure.

Sunny’s Legacy
Sunny had always assisted me when I recorded my daily cat tip on my message machine.  After the tip I would say:  “Isn’t that right Sunny?” and he would let out a Siamese meow.  Without Sunny, I didn’t think I’d be able to keep up the tradition.  But one day I decided that I owed it to my cat practice to carry on. As I started to speak, Star-Dust climbed up on a chair beside me.  I decided to follow “his cue”, so when I got to the end of my tip, I said: “Isn’t that right Star-Dust?” He responded with a Siamese meow.  I managed to say thank you without falling from my chair. 
Ziggy Star-Dust

Copy Cat Syndrome — Identity Theft
The next morning was a repeat.  Somehow he had selectively mirrored Sunny’s meow. He took over where Sunny left off.  What a cat!  Now and again someone would mention they didn’t realize Star-Dust was Siamese.  Imagine their surprise when I told them about Star-Dust’s inheritance — Sunny’s legacy. It’s not unusual for a cat to take on selected habits of a former companion. Yes, especially if the companion was the top cat, the leader who had the preferred or select choices.

Carole's Take On Oscar The Cat Who ..... 
Only One Cat A Night In The Bedroom
As I drifted off to sleep, I thought of an email that morning from one of my readers. Her groom-to-be was not a cat lover.  

Equal opportunity at bedtime. Three in the bed!!
She had three cats. He didn’t want them in the bedroom. His compromise was that one cat could sleep with them each night. This would cut down on the cat hair. 
Her oldest cat was 14. He had always slept with her, and her other two had followed his lead. Cats were her sleeping companions since childhood. What should she do? 

What a disaster! I emailed  back that I wouldn’t accept such an insensitive demand. But it was her choice. So she could offer to split the night with him and her cats -- or get twin beds. I wondered if this relationship had a healthy future. With that in mind, I snuggled closer to Orion and totally drifted off.

Monkee Made My Day
Monkee is no longer toddler-phobic. Click Here and Scroll down to Monkee's Toddler Friendly Legacy 

Monkee now toddler-friendly


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

During this time of turmoil and grief, Orion has some Cat Speak to nurture you and your cats:

-- Start with the letter “A” and each day a different letter that describes how kewl your cats are. As you talk, you’ll have a fun connection.

-- Give your cats an extra brushing or combing. A moistened paper towel will also provide them with a rubdown.

-- If your cat/s are on any serious medication and you feel very stressed, you might need to increase their medication.

-- Tight hugs release tension, and tell your cats you’re all okay.

And remember that a family that plays together — stays together.

** Isle of Dogs Event
BYOD (Bring Your Own Dog)   
Roxie Theater becomes a movie house of dogs for Isle of Dogs event  Read more

Orion believes in equal opportunity for movies and movie goers. Let the dogs have their day at the movies for now.

** Dust Buster magic 

Orion prefers to wipe out any doubt with a dust buster massage.
Click Here

** Toy Time
Luna divides her attention between her glitter ball and furry black mouse. She’s of the fickle kind. 
Click Here 

** Bliss spills over

** “All Cats Matter” is Orion’s signature.
All Cats Matter

Hamlet's Hamlet
(Feline Greeter at the Algonquin Hotel) 
Hamlet amidst the flora -- Click Here
I had agreed to be shadowed by a journalist for a podcast interview.
It was Hamlet’s day for a session, and  you’ll notice he pawed right up to the mike. He knows how to strut his stuff. 

A few of the guests pointed their phones his way.  “What a ham,” said one of the guests. “He cracks me up”. I nodded and thought to myself, I knew him when  …. 

Hamlet at the mike Click Here 

Hamlet warms up at his own inimitable speed Click Here 

Hamlet's workout -- on a roll with the glitter ball  Click Here 

Read more and Scroll down to Hamlet’s Hamlet to see Hamlet at work and play. 

Mayor's Alliance For NYC's Animals
You too can make yourself, as well as many a cat and dog happy. Become a volunteer with the Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals

Adoptapalooza at Washington Square Park



A Free Consultation With The Cat Therapist