Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A day in the life of a cat...ME!!!

It's 6:00 am, and although my internal clock has come to expect it, I'm still startled by this daily ritual awakening of not one, not two, not three, but at least four different alarm buzzings, one of which is the most annoying banter of two local radio disc jockeys who tend to be fairly loud and crude in their manly conversations!  But, I digress...the reason there are all these alarms going off at the same time should be fairly obvious:  Master has a hard if not impossible time getting up in the mornings!  So the more and the louder the alarms, "the merrier"!!!
Where I'm at when these ear deafening sirens go off depends.  Sometimes, but not lately, I'll be in bed with Master & Lady.  More often than not, I'll be asleep wherever it's warm, like by the computers, tucked away in the corner.  Occasionally I will have fallen asleep by one of the windows.  Although my dreams are suddenly disrupted by the noise, usually I will stir a little before burying my face for a few more minutes of cat nap. It is only after Master has been moving about in his habitualistic fashion of getting ready for work that I open my eyes and rise to greet the day.  The sun isn't out just yet, and I let out a gaping yawn as I arch my back in a full, relaxing stretch.  Ahhhh!  I jump down from my nice warm slumber spot, and go check on Master.  Yep, there he is, already showered and getting dressed. I rub up against him and he lightly scratches me behind the ears.  We do this just about every morning.  Then he continues getting ready, as Lady awakens and begins her day.  A short while later, as I hear the keys jingling, I bolt for the door, jumping on the desk right next to it so that I can say goodbye to Master.  I try & peer around the corner to look in the stairway as he opens the door, but I can't see much of anything.  He pats me on the head and says goodbye to Lady.  I then go over to one of the front windows and watch him getting in his truck.  Then he's off, to where I don't know.  All I do know is that he will be gone for the next 8 hours or so.
Lately because the weather has been so cool, I will feel somewhat energized in the morning...so I like to get "charged up" and tear through the apartment from one end to the next!!  I feel like a dog letting off some steam, but I think I sound more like a horse galloping!  Great fun!!  In no time I am warmed up and have excercised my muscles.  Sometimes Lady will play with me, or she'll be doing work at the computers.  In either case, after my morning 'calisthenics' I will usually look out the windows, taking turns gazing out the front, sides, and back.  Because we live on a street with quite a few businesses, mornings are usually busy with men and women arriving to work, customers going in and out, and deliveries being made. 
Speaking of deliveries, occasionally the UPS or FedEx Man will scare the daylights out of me when he pounds on the door.  I go running and don't come out from under the bed until I know the coast is clear, and then, curiousity kills me (pun intended) as I cautiously tread out of my hiding spot and approach whatever package(s) were left. Ahh, the smells on the boxes are always intriguing and different each time!  Usually what's in the boxes however, don't pique my interest at all, and they just smell..."new".
Lately my mornings have also been "for the birds"  :)
That is, there seems to be quite a bit of  bird activity, and also I'll hear a strange sound and look up to find what I think are called geese flying in a strange formation in the sky.  I wonder why they do that.  I still haven't seen any squirrels yet, and the dogs out back have quieted down.  So usually I will "people watch" the remainder of the morning until I get bored.  Then it's time for a little snack, visit the litterbox, and take my morning nap!  From the time I was kitten, I've been given different brands of dry, crunchy food formulated for cats.  Some are tastier than others.  Lady fills my bowl up with fresh food and water every morning, and this way I can nibble throughout the day whenever I get hungry.  Somehow I'm either lucky or magically know not to overstuff myself, and when I rarely do, I get sick.  But I've managed to stay the 8 lbs. I've been since I became an adult.  As I've mentioned in a previous post, Lady will give me "human" treats, like small bits of beef or chicken, cheese, and I'm especially fond of lettuce and some vegetables.  But the only time I got to savor the most delicious moist canned cat food was when Lady went on vacation when we were living back in Florida and she had the Neighbor take care of me. 
Now normally I am pretty afraid of people.  But Wayne, as the neighbor was called, was a cat lover.  I knew this before I was ever introduced to him.  All the neighborhood cats knew this as well.  I would look out my front window and watch when he would come home from work.  They would all run up to him in his driveway as he was getting out of the car!  And he would address each one of them by name:  Conan, Kilo, Black Eyed Pete, Boo Boo Kity, to name just a few.  Each of the kitties had their own unique personality, but they all loved Wayne.  And he loved them back.  Lady had no qualms about him taking care of me while she was gone, but what she didn't realize was how much he was about to spoil me rotten!  :)
While she was gone I was treated to both dry food and my first official taste at the best canned food I have ever eaten.  Now to be fair, I think the reason Lady never gave me the canned food was because she knew it could be bad for my teeth, as dry food helps keep teeth in better shape.  And while there are arguments on both sides, as long as the owner is feeding his/her feline food specially formulated for cats, there are no definitive answers as to which is better, dry or canned food.  The bottom line is I've been happy with what she gives me, and it tastes good.  Getting the canned food was a treat in much the same way you would be happy getting a steak once in awhile instead of hamburger.
So spoil me he did, and when Lady came back from vacation, I must admit I missed Wayne (and the canned food!).  Now Lady will give me a treat with some every once in awhile.  More on my old neighborhood and Florida home in future posts...getting back to my 'typical day':
I do sleep a lot during the day, that's what us kitties do!!  As I've stated, I love to find the warmest, SUNNIEST spot in the apartment.  Nothing beats napping while the sun is warming you up!!  Throughout the day, when I'm not napping that is, I'll see what Lady is up to and nuzzle her for affection.  If she's not paying attention, I gently nibble on her arm or foot to get it.  (The foot is what works the best!)  Sometimes I'll start playing with one of my toys to get her attention as well.  I know I was way more active when I was a kitten; these days I'm just more lazy  :)
Before I know it, I somehow sense that it is time for Master to come home.  Sometimes I'll look out the window and watch for him; sometimes I'll jump on the chair by the door and wait; and occasionally, I'll be in the back of the apartment and hear faint footsteps in the front stairway and race hectically to the door!!  I'm so excited for him to be home!  Then I will nuzzle him and he will pet me and play with me, and I can settle back down again.
Sometimes after Master comes home, they both go out.  I can tell because Lady will get dressed up and start putting makeup on.  This is my cue, and playfully I try to 'interfere' and delay her from getting ready because I really don't want them to leave!  So I'll jump up on the sink, begging for affection, and if I can, I will try and 'steal' her makeup brush!  That serves a two-fold purpose:  a) she can't finish putting her makeup on, and b) I love the soft bristles!  I could easily play with it for hours, but she always grabs it back from me  :(
If they end up going out, I usually take a nap and wait for them to come home.  If they stay in, they'll have dinner and I am always curled up nearby.
When it's time for bed, Master sets his alarms and announces "time for bed"!!!  Then they both retire for the evening.  Sometimes I'll join them, but more often than not, especially since I nap so much during the day, I'm wide awake and will spend time at the window, looking out at the beautiful night sky, enjoying the moon and sounds of crickets in the trees.  It's probably the most serene time of the day for me, and soon enough, I'll be off in kitty dreamland.  Zzzzzzzzzzz..............................

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A few words on Cat Safety.....

I was just reflecting today on something that happened a couple of years ago, in fact, when I was still a kitten.  It happened innocently enough, I was nosying around in the garage and stepped in something by accident.  The something I later learned was some gasoline that had leaked from the lawn mower onto the garage floor.  As soon as it happened, my reaction was to start licking this smelly and bitter tasting fuel from my paws.  I started to feel sick.  I went back into the house and immediately Lady and Master could smell gas.  When they realized the source they went into the garage and panicked, because they didn't know if I'd ingested any or how much. I heard as they made a few phone calls, then Lady picked me up and I realized I was going for another car ride.  It was dark outside, and I rode on Lady's lap.  I wanted to tell them I wasn't feeling sick any more, but even if I could I don't think that would have convinced them not to take me to the Cat Hospital.  After examining me, the Doctor told Master and Lady that I would be fine.  They were so relieved.
Lesson learned:  All pet owners should "animal proof" their home as you would baby or child proof it.  I'm listing a couple of good links for you.  Needless to say, I never stepped in that foul-smelling stuff again!!

Cat First Aid
Cat Safety Tips
more Cat Safety Tips
Kitten Proofing Your Home

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Strolling down 'kitten lane'.......

Looking back now, it seems so long ago when I was a kitten.  I gotta say, I acclimated to my new home pretty quickly, mainly because it was just me, Lady, and Master.  I didn't have any "little people" trying to dress me up in doll's clothing, or constantly picking me up cooing how cute I was.  Sure the attention is great, but ask any kitten and he or she will tell you it gets a little old to be constantly handled.  Any cat lover knows us felines will let you humans know when we want affection.  Not that I'm not affectionate.  I am extremely affectionate, especially with Lady.  She and Master got me plenty of toys while I was growing up:  balls, squeaky toys, feathers, mice, toys with bells, toys with catnip in them, you name it.  I grew fond of ping pong balls for some reason.  As far as the catnip, well, I'm not overwhelmed with it, for some reason!  It's okay, and Lady actually planted some in our backyard, and from time to time would cut some and bring it in for me to sniff and roll around in.  What I'm really wild about though, is this stuff they call "valerian root".  Just the smell of it (I think to humans the equivalent is sweaty socks!!) drives me crazy!!!  Master tried using some one time to help him relax and get to sleep (as it's a common herbal sedative), and he mixed it with water and let me lick a little.  That stuff is great!!!  Now whenever he takes out the bottle, I start meowing until they let me have a bit!!!  Yummy!!!
Over the years my masters have given me other "food samplings".  I can honestly say, except for a little bit of milk, I've never had the other cat food 'no-nos'.  I do love tuna, or canned chicken or turkey, and while I am a carnivore, I also have an unusual penchant for corn husks and lettuce!  And recently I got a taste of what Master kept referring to as "peanut butter".  The taste didn't really appeal to me, but what was even more annoying was that I felt the need to keep licking it off my jowls and it was sticking to the roof of my mouth!!!
Master and Lady thought that was hilarious!  Sigh, the things we kitties have to put up with!

"Rainy Days and Mondays"......

Well, unlike the song, I can't say that I get depressed or that the weather really affects me too much.  Yesterday started off okay, but then the wind picked up, and clouds rolled in, bringing along lots of lightning and thunder, and it started to rain cats and dogs (figuratively, of course!).  Lightning does scare me when it's really close.  Big huge bolts accompanied by an ear deafening CRACK!  Usually that's the time I head for cover, whether it's in the closet, or under the bed, until Lady reassuringly calls me out.  Even then I don't assume it's safe, and cautiously wait until I don't hear any more thunder. But today was the first time I've been in our new apartment that the wind was so gusty Lady had to shut all the windows.  And I saw something aside from the rain, that I have never seen before in my life:  golf ball sized ice falling from the sky!  I watched them as they hit the ground and the cars below, disappearing as they smashed into smithereens.  It was fascinating to watch, but I don't think Lady felt the same way as she exclaimed, "Oh no!  Hail!!" And so it came down in buckets for most of the afternoon and right on into the evening even after Master came home from wherever it is he spends the day at.  I'm glad Lady didn't go out, it didn't look very safe outside!  And that makes me glad that both my masters keep me protected inside.
The rain apparently stopped overnight, but I woke up to it being cloudy and overcast.  Not to mention a little on the cool side!  Since the windows were open I sought warmth by curling up under the covers!
Speaking of cold, being a Florida kitty, and an indoor one at that, I never had to worry about being cold.  Lady would always crank the heat on for us.  Once I moved out here, however, I realized it got a LOT colder than in Florida!  One day, about a month after I had moved out here, Lady was talking excitedly to Master.  The next thing I knew, they put me on this leash and took me out of the apartment!  It was the first time I'd been outside since I moved to Oklahoma!  Of course I was a bit scared, but excited too!  They let me sniff around in the sunroom a bit before opening the front entryway door.  I was too afraid to go out on my own, so Master picked me up and set me outside.  Whoa!!!!!  Immediately something was different...there was this cold white powder on the ground where I would think nice leafy green grass would be!  It was weird to step on it, my paws sunk right in!! And what was this?!?!  More white powdery stuff was falling from the sky!  It was landing on my coat and getting me wet!!!  I wasn't too sure I liked it, Master and Lady thought it was hilarious.  But I was enjoying sniffing around and checking things out.  So much so that I didn't want to go back inside!  You can check out my 'snowventure' on Youtube!  And I would love it if you subscribe!  :)

Well, after awaking from a cozy little catnap, the sun is trying to come out, but I don't know if it will.  I've already done some nice long stretches, time to run around the apartment and let off some energy!  I used to love doing that when I lived in Florida - I would run from one end of the house clear over to the garage, sliding on the slippery kitchen tile floor and almost running into the cat door!  Such fun memories!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Cat Eats Flies!!!

...Well, if I can catch them that is!!  You've heard of fly fishing, well my latest "sport" is Fly Catching!  I haven't managed to actually get one yet, they're too fast!! I'm still learning though, and I think Lady will be uploading a video on it soon, so be sure and subscribe to keep posted! 
Meanwhile, I'm lovin this cool fall weather here in Tulsa.  Having lived in Florida up until last February, I was used to it being pretty warm all the time.  But my Master just put in these screens in the windows of our apartment last weekend, and now I don't just get to LOOK out the windows, I can SMELL the air, and feel the wind...it's heavenly!  I currently live on the second floor, a welcome change from the teeny tiny 400 square feet I was living in when I first came out here.  I can easily spend hours looking out at the cars driving by and people walking.  Since there's a tree right outside the front windows, sometimes birds will come and perch on the branches.  They never stay long though - I wonder why?!  I hope someday I'll see squirrels - they used to keep me company outside my home in Florida while Lady was at work.
When we first moved to this place in July, there was a male cat that lived downstairs.  I think he was an outside cat, and as soon as I moved in, he was always hanging around outside my door.  Lady allowed us to sniff each other, and it would have been fun to hang out with him, although I don't really know what the Outside is like, and I think Lady is deathly afraid I might run away.
One time when Master was taking his bike downstairs I got out and they didn't realize it at first.  I went up a few stairs and started to explore, but nothing really appealed to my senses so I came back and went past my apartment and down the stairs.  Lo and behold, there was my Cat Buddy!  I was so happy to see him!  We sniffed each other Hello, and he headed out the main entrance door, wanting me to follow, but I was too scared!  So I hid in a corner behind the stairs, until I heard Master and Lady calling me!  I ran up the stairs and boy were they relieved to see me!  Since then I haven't been out of the apartment, and although it's great to look out the windows and feel the nice cool fall air, I wonder what it's like for cats who get to live outside.
I haven't seen my friend for awhile now.  I think he might have found another home.  I hope he's okay.
Now that the windows are open, everything sounds a lot LOUDER.  Cars, motorcycles, and most of all, there's a fire station right down the street, so any given hour of the day or night I will be awakened by the deafening siren.  I've gotten used to it, so I'm not really scared by it anymore.  I wonder where these red trucks with the flashing lights on top go racing off to.  I also wonder about this weekly siren that goes off.  The first time I heard it I nearly jumped!  It only lasts for a couple of minutes, but it sure is LOUD, and scary....I think it is some kind of test drill or something.
The other constant sounds I hear come from the dogs barkening in a neighboring backyard.  Geez, they bark at everything!  They can't see me, and I can't really tell what they look like other than they are both black, and one is smaller than the other.  I wonder if they would be friendly to me.  Although I don't think any of my neighbors have cats, I know there's a couple of dogs because their Masters will take them out for walks.  Somehow I don't have as big a fear of canines as I do people.  Sometimes it takes me a little while to overcome my shyness when Master and Lady have other people come over.  If I sense that they are a cat lover I tend to be more friendly; otherwise when there's a knock on the door I bolt for underneath the bed!
Speaking of bed, I'm thinking about going to curl up for an afternoon cat nap. 
Meow for now!

Monday, September 14, 2009

My first visit to: "the Cat Doctor"!

I had just been settling in to my new home for about a week, when one day Lady picked me up and put me in a little cardboard box with holes.  Of course, it scared the beejeepers out of me, so I started meowing as she picked me up and took me outside.  She placed me in the seat next to her, and started talking soothingly to me to try and calm me down, as she operated the vehicle.  I just lay there as there was nothing I could do.  We had only been moving for about five minutes, when the vehicle stopped.  Lady picked me up and took me inside a building.  Immediately I could smell other cats.  I didn't know if this was a good thing.  There were also other strange smells.  Lady set me down and opened the box.  I sensed it was ok to explore, but I was still scared.
Tentatively I put my paws on the edge of the box and peeked over.  I didn't see any other cats, but I was curious about the smells, so I cautiously ventured out.  Sniffing around, I found the source of where some other cats had surely been -- TOYS!!!  They were in a little basket on the floor:  there were toy mice, balls that had jingle bells in them, and other stuffed toys filled with this irresistible fragrance that I have come to know as catnip (more on that subject in a later post!).  I sniffed at the toys, but before I had the chance to even calm down to attempt to swat at one, I heard my name called.
Lady proceeded to pick me up, and we went through a door to a small room.  There was a nice girl who started to pet me and talk to me.  She put me on this round silver plate and then I heard her say "1 1/2 pounds!"  I don't really know what that meant, other than she seemed pleased about it.  Then another lady entered the room, and I soon realized that they were referring to her as "Doctor".  Doctor started petting me and talking to me as well as Lady, and although I have no idea what was being said, I could tell it was all about ME!   Doctor looked at my eyes with a weird little light, and then she stuck something in my ears.  She listened to my heart, and she opened my jaw and looked at my teeth.  Then her assistant held me still as I felt Doctor put this cold stick up my butt!!!  I thought the worst was over, because Doctor said everything was "fine."  But then she said a few words to her assistant, and the next thing I knew I felt a few pinches.  It is because of those first shots I had that I will always dread going to the Doctor!!!   I didn't know it then, but I would be returning to the Doctor in a few weeks for a scheduled operation.
I don't really remember going in, because they gave me another SHOT (!!!) which made me go right to sleep.  When I woke up, I was sore and really sleepy, so once I got home, that's about all I did.  I later came to find out that Lady had this operation done so I couldn't have any kittens.  It sounds cruel but I think that most cat owners like my Lady do this because if they didn't, lets face it, our world would be overrun with felines!!!  :)
That's not a bad thing, but not everyone can provide a good home for us!
Well, I've had enough talking about the Doctor, I'm going to go curl up now and hopefully not have any nightmares about it!  But, in all fairness, I know Doctor was just doing her job, and everyone there at the Cat Place were very friendly and reassuring to me! :)

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Hello, and welcome to my official blog!  Allow me to introduce myself!

My name is Mischief.  I was adopted right around October 30th, 2005, hence my masters named me after the regionally popular night before Halloween, Mischief Night.
I was actually found by my first adopted family a few weeks before.  It had been unseasonally cold, so for warmth, my Mother Cat placed me up under a van's engine block for warmth.  The next thing I knew, I woke up hungry and started meowing for her.  Suddenly there was light, and a strange man was looking at me!  I was scared, but he picked me up and took me inside his house.  There was already another cat in the house, but it was not my Mother, and I was put inside a little room where I was given some dry, crunchy but tasty morsels to eat, a bowl of water, and something I had never seen before, a small box with some sand in it, and somehow I instinctively knew this was for me to use to go to the bathroom in.  I sensed that the Man wanted me to be kept separate from the other cat, because he kept the room to the door closed.  Occasionally he or the Lady of the house would come in, along with two little girls who would try and pick me up, pet me, or play with me.  I was a scared of the little girls, but I was most fascinated about this contraption that was basically a white bowl that was filled with water, and if you pushed the lever down, the water would spin down and disappear, only to fill up with water again!  This room was to be my home for the next week or so.Then one day, the door opened, and I saw a different Lady and Man come in.  They stooped down to pet me, and the new Lady was talking to the new Man.  I liked them both, and soon realized that they were taking me with them.  I sat on Lady's lap while my new Master operated the vehicle we were in.  It was my very first car ride, to a brand new home, so of course, I was fearful, and meowed the entire drive home.
Once they pulled in the driveway, they took me inside.  They put me down and let me start exploring.  Being little, this new home seemed HUGE!  There were all these rooms, and different smells.  I could smell that there were animals, like a cat and dog that had lived there before.  I spent hours going into each room and exploring.  Master and Lady showed me where my food and water were, and also they gave me a sandbox to use.  There was also this little doorway that I soon was able to learn that if I pushed on it with my paws, I could open it and get into the garage, which was a whole other world of smells and interesting things!
This was to be my home for the next 3 years.

Next up:  Transition from 'kittenhood'!