** The Kitten and The Siberian Husky They share a special bond.
Rosie the kitten and her surrogate Mom
** Meet the Cats The feline models photographed for T's Fall Women's Issue, were all professional, except for one fledgling "foster" kitten. Alongside almost 200 Japanese sweets. Read more ** Annual Show At The Algonquin
The Algonquin Hotel in New York City hosted its Annual Celebration and Cat Fashion Show. Read more
"Just when I think I have my cat all figured out, she does something wacky to blow my whole theory" was a remark from one of my callers to a radio broadcast I was part of for the BBC. I told the caller that this wacky behavior is what makes a cat so fascinating and I liked to refer to this behavior as "catcentric". Yes, leave it to a cat to throw a curve when you least expect it. I'm reminded of Ju Ju and his "jaw action".
Toothless Grooming -- Jaw Action One of the cat's top priorities is grooming. This washing process also provides comfort as it is reminiscent of the mother cat's care. So it is not unusual for a cat to groom when in doubt or anxious. The tongue does most of the work but sometimes a cat will pull the strands of fur between his teeth. Bald Spots Emerge This can sometimes provide a challenge for a toothless cat. Ju Ju was one of those cats. Like his brother Faxi, all of his teeth had to be removed. Their guardian Terri, worried that they would not be able to eat. But no problem. They were even able to eat and digest their dry food. But one day she noticed that Faxi had a crescent shaped bald spot on his side. When a couple of more spots appeared, she was totally confused.
Ju Ju Adapts
Poor Ju Ju. His periodontal problems left him toothless. Now something was pulling out his fur. It turned out that Ju Ju was the 'something'. One morning she watched him as he groomed. He would grab a clump of fur with his mouth, clamp down on it with his jaws and end up with a mouthful of fur. He no longer had teeth to comb the strands of fur but continued to groom in his usual manner. Terri realized she couldn't teach him a new way to groom but hoped he would adapt to his new situation before he was fur-less. Luckily, Ju Ju probably tired of ingesting mouthfuls of fur because soon Terri saw him grooming without pulling and no new bald spots.
Subscribe to Carole's free monthly Blog -- The Wilbourn Way
She was found in a cardboard box and arrived at the Algonquin Hotel in 2010 where she reigned supreme. But Matilda recently hosted her final Annual Celebration and Feline Fashion Show. She has retired to a forever home in Minnesota.
(Photo NY Post)
Hamlet -- Matilda's Successor
(He Will Soon Be the Most Famous Cat in NYC) Read more Never fear! Hamlet, another orphan of the streets, will carry on for Matilda. Her legacy includes Reiki treatments to ease and enhance Hamlet's transition as the hotel's resident cat.
Hamlet's First Reiki Session His staff told me which executive office I'd find Hamlet in. Sure enough, he was stretched out on one of the swivel chairs. I added some tissue paper to his cushion, selected music on my iPad, and Hamlet zoned out to his Reiki treatment. Toy therapy wrapped up his session .... until the next one.
When You Meet Someone New Who's Rude (ViralThread) Artistic Cats Tommy and Jasper's pose mirrors their guardian's regard for art. She is on staff at the Whitney Museum.
Let's Plant Catnip What could go wrong? It prevents mosquitoes.
Straighten up and fly right
Matilda's Annual Celebration And Cat Fashion Show
My Orion's passion for Matilda lives on
Orion's tail always curls and whirls for feline hotties -- gender non-specific.
Orion sent his surrogate robotic cats to cat-speak and Reiki-assist with me at the Algonquin Hotel. Three lucky cats were adopted at the event, and 100% of the $12,000 raised from ticket sales and a silent auction will benefit the Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals.
Orion coaches his robotic cats Casanova and Ziggy StarDust
Orion's robotic cats will join me at the next Adoptapalooza, another Mayor's Alliance event. Bookmark please:
Will Our Two Cats Ever Be Friends? (Rivalry, Inter-Cat Hostility)
Matilda up high for security
"When there's food to be had, Matilda is fearless of Fito," said Alan. "She's there in a heartbeat. Otherwise, she hangs out on top of the kitchen cabinets." Fito -- An Arabian Mau As I watched Fito dart boldly around the apartment, I could see why Matilda could feel threatened. Fito was about six months when adopted from a shelter in Dubai. Alan and Meg were told he was an Arabian Mau.
Fito loves that Catnip Garden nip
Sounded fine, but to them, he looked like your handsome, American domestic short hair. Back in Dubai, he was their only cat, but he sometimes played with a neighbor's laid back cat. Matilda Moves In They moved to New York in 2015 when Fito was three years old and still their only cat. Matilda joined the family several months ago. The rescue group told them she was found on the street and had a litter of kittens who were all adopted. Now it was her turn to be chosen. At first she and Fito hit it off. But that was short lived. All he had to do was look her way and she bolted. Food Was Matilda's Courage Magnet"Have some catnip," I said and sprinkled some on some tissue paper for Fito. Even before I could offer some to Matilda, she had scampered down to the floor from the top of the kitchen cabinets. "She thinks it's food," said Meg. I quickly sprinkled some Catnip Garden nip on a separate piece of tissue paper which Matilda pounced on. Fito didn't stalk Matilda, but his eyes were glued on her, as she finished off the nip. While Meg diverted Fito with more nip on his tissue paper, Alan returned Matilda to her perch on top of the cabinets. Mutual Gratification "You've now experienced Matilda's total obsession," said Alan. I nodded and explained that when her focus was on food, her m.o. of 'Fito angst' switched to the fulfilling pursuit and gratification of food. Fito, if not absorbed with his own food gratification, became the voyeur of Matilda. Food became their mutual distraction and gratification. She only had eyes for food because it was her means of survival from her days on the street. "Unfortunately, non-stop food gratification isn't the key to a cat-friendly relationship," said Meg. "What is?" Appeal to Fito's Comfort Zone. Replace Rivalry With Acceptance.
You've got to stroke Fito's ego. Commend him on his generosity, but be authentic about it. The better he feels, the better Matilda will feel. Rivalry is what provokes Fito's aggressiveness with Matilda. He relives his early kitten deprivation and abandonment to the streets whenever you give Matilda attention, and she becomes his tension target. Her reaction is to run for cover. She's classic flight and he's classic fight -- I'll get her before she gets me.
Most of all, remember to acknowledge him whenever you touch, talk to or even mention her name, so you don't trigger his rivalry -- that 'left out' complex.
Provide visible not physical contact with gates or another see-through barrier to the doorway of the guest room where Matilda spends the night. It's best that she remains in this room until they have a major peace breakthrough.
You can play with them both through the gates so they'll both be engaged without physical contact. The barrier also allows them to hiss and posture without incident.
Always stop interaction with them on a good note before they become agitated or startled -- so their memory is a positive one.
Eventually, you can open the gates for brief cat-mingles.
(Refer to A Home For Christmas in December 2016 Blog for more recommendations on Introduction-Integration of a new cat. Scroll down to Integration Reminders For Cat-Mingles).
As we said our good byes Meg brushed Fito who blissed out, and I reminded them to play the musical MP3 to reinforce the desensitization of the cats' session and to be in touch with a progress report.
Paw-gress -- Follow-Up Two Weeks Later "Hi Carole," said Meg, "the phone is set on speaker phone. Fito plopped down beside me as soon as I turned their music on. Check out his selfies. How's that for bliss?" Meg went on to tell me that now Fito appeared to be fascinated by Matilda.The gates were set up in the doorway of her room, and Fito's eyes were glued to Matilda. He still hissed at her, and she sometimes took cover, but there seemed to be less resistance.
Matilda on her side of the gate
"Well there's a thin line between love and hate. Gradually, Matilda's fear will chip away, and Fito's love attraction will no longer be unrequited," I said. "They may even become BBFs, when Matilda gets it that Fito's fight has turned to play and evenlove."