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Review: Bite Me - A Memoir (Of Sorts)

Thursday April 17, 2014

Max Thompson is one of the most popular cats on the Internet. I have even had his blog on my blogroll for several years. Therefore, it is surprising that I found his latest book, Bite Me - a Memoir (of Sorts) strictly by accident. But who could ignore a book called "Bite Me" for long? Especially a book written by a cat.

Photo of Book Cover Bite Me, a Memoir
photo courtesy of PriceGrabber

It is difficult to write an objective review about a book such as Bite Me. The reader is thrust into the lives of real people and animals, and despite Max's often flippant observations, you can feel the real emotions behind them. I felt a particular affinity toward Max's human Mom, K.A. Thompson. As an "Army brat," I had been moved all over the U.S., and often felt the angst of leaving behind newfound friends, even pets. I guarantee one thing: when you read Bite Me, you'll experience some intensely emotional moments, along with loads of chuckles and LOL memories.

April is Heartworm Awareness Month

Thursday April 17, 2014

While heartworm disease in dogs has been around for over 100 years, it was first recognized in cats in 1921. In the United states, its prevalence is concentrated mostly in the southeastern coastal states, although it can be found in every state. Heartworm is transmitted by mosquitoes and can be found in many species of mammals, including humans, and is a potentially fatal disease.

Like some other people, I was not particularly worried about heartworm disease in my cats, thinking that it was much more prevalent in dogs. However, cats can indeed get heartworm from mosquito bites. Although the percentages are not available, the American Heartworm Society states that the incidences of heartworms in cats have increased over the years. Heartworm disease in both dogs and cats can be prevented. Coincidentally, yesterday, I picked up a one-month supply of Revolution (selamectin) for our six cats. Although our cats don't have fleas, several of them have ear mites, which are also targeted by Revolution. One of the most disturbing facts that I learned from the American Heartworm Society, is that heartworm is often diagnosed as asthma in cats. My Joey was diagnosed with asthma over three years ago, when we lived in an area with mosquito problems. Even more disturbing is the fact that although there are treatments for heartworm in dogs, there are no such treatments yet for cats. Learn much more about this serious disease from the American Heartworm Society.

Get Rid of Cat Fleas

Wednesday April 16, 2014

Have your cats become the local fast food hangout for families of fleas? Fleas are not only annoying, but they are nasty little critters that carry any number of "hitch-hikers" such as tapeworms and the Haemobartonellosis microorganism. I'm sure you'll agree with the importance of stopping flea infestations before they occur, for your cats' comfort and your own peace of mind.

With warmer weather, our cats are scratching more lately. But worse, a couple of them have ear mites, which are really bothering them. Although I can't find any evidence of fleas on them, it's past due time to treat them with the Frontline we have on hand.
Image © iStock Photo.

I do not personally recommend any flea powders nor flea collars for cats, and definitely not for young kittens. Nor should any flea control product labeled for dogs ever be used on cats of any age. In 2001, hundreds of cat owners lost their cats after using certain flea products containing either permethrin or methoprene. After hearing hundreds of specific consumer complaints, the EPA investigated the Hartz Mountain Corporation, manufacturer of a variety of pet products, including flea control products. Those unnecessary deaths underscored the necessity of reading and understanding labels, not only on food products, but also on flea and tick control products.

Cat Picture of the Week: Gimpy

Tuesday April 15, 2014

Gimpy is my choice for the second Cat Picture of the Week for April, 2014. After you've read his story, I'm sure you'll agree with my selection.

Cat Picture of the Week: Gimpy
photo © About.com Member archeologist

It's hard to imagine an inhumane monster who would dump a litter of helpless three week old kittens into a dumpster. But this particular litter was blessed by being rescued by a group of angels in the form of Feral Fanciers, then fostered by another angel called archeologist. Eventually the kittens were old enough to be offered for adoption, however, archeologist decided to keep Gimpy as her own. Gimpy will always need specialized veterinary care as well as constant help at home because of his rare type of rickets, along with megacolon. But he's in the very best home possible for his needs, and even the other cats rally around him. Read more of Gimpy's story, and learn how to submit your own special needs cat story and photos.

Cat Breed of the Week: Himalayan

Tuesday April 15, 2014

If Persians are the number one cat in popularity, the Himalayan color division has to play a large part in that favor. The Himalayan is a result of breeding Persian to Siamese, to retain the Persian type while adding the unique "pointed" coloration of the Siamese. A remarkable success, one would gather, from the large number of Himalayan breeders.

photo of Himalayan catThis lovely Himalayan is Sushi.
Photo Credit: © Melissa Miranda

About the Breed | Share Your Himalayan

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Alley Cat Allies' Tips for Kitten Season

Monday April 14, 2014

We're all aware that it's kitten season, but be careful about "rescuing lost kittens" until you're sure the momcat is not coming back. According to Alley Cat Allies, the mom may be out looking for food, and if you get too close to the kitten, mom may delay coming back, and/or the kitten may run and hide.

Photo of feral cat and her kittensActually, it may be dangerous to remove neonatal kittens (four weeks or younger) from where you found them. Kittens this young need specialized care, so unless you are a fully trained feral cat rescuer, it's best to just observe kittens from a distance. According to Becky Robinson, Founder and President of Alley Cat Allies, ""Ultimately you have to use your best judgment. Determine if the kitten is young enough to be socialized and fostered or adopted, or if she is old enough to be trapped, neutered and returned. If the kitten is not weaned, she will require bottle-feeding and round-the-clock care. To determine the age of a kitten, use Alley Cat Allies' Kitten Progression Chart."
photo © Alley Cat Allies

There are a number of other things you can do to help the cause of our serious cat overpopulation problem. Check out Alley Cat Allies' tips for more information. Then if you haven't already, spay and neuter your own pet cats. Remember that responsible caregiving of cats begins at home.

Cat Breed of the Week: Havana Brown

Thursday April 10, 2014

The Havana Brown is unique to gaze upon, and even more delightful to enjoy as a companion. Browns are very people-oriented and will often extend a paw to gain attention. With its charming manner and soft, gentle voice, the Havana Brown would make an ideal pet for a single person.

Susitnaladys Trudy of Mokolea AKA Trudy was featured on the Cat Fanciers Association's website under the Havana Brown Breed Profile, as the CFA National Best of Breed for 2001-2002 show season.
Photo Credit: © Diane Mounib, Mokolea Cattery

About the Breed | Submit Your Story

Cat Picture of the Week: Abby

Wednesday April 9, 2014

Despite the name and remarkable beauty of this week's Cat Picture of the Week, Abby is a male cat.

Cat Picture of the Week, Abby
photo © About.com Member Daliana Amador

Also, upon seeing Abby's photo, you wouldn't know of all the medical problems the poor guy has had since Daliana adopted him when he was about three months old. Raising a special needs cat is not easy. Daliana has spent a lot of time researching to learn as much as she could about Abby's various conditions. She wisely advises "don't take your cat's acting strange for granted, or as a sign of kitty being naughty. Obtain information on your own, because sometimes big issues are missed, and your cat depends only on you." Daliana practices what she preaches, and Abby is the living proof of her love and devotion. Find out more about Abby, and how to submit your own special needs cat's photos and story.

7 Reasons People Don't Like Cats

Thursday April 3, 2014

Since you voluntarily came to this website, you might be wondering "Why on earth would anyone dislike cats?" Although there are likely more than seven reasons why someone might not like cats, or even profess to hate them, this article covers what I consider to be seven main reasons. After you've read the article, please return here and vote in the poll.

Look at this sweet face. Could you imagine why anyone would dislike this pretty calico girl? Could it be that they are bothered with allergies to cats, so severe that they suffer disabling asthmatic attacks when even in the same house as a cat? Yes, that's one of the seven reasons. Read the list to discover six more.
Photo Credit: © Franny Syufy

Peaches, the Wonder Kitten

Wednesday April 2, 2014

This has to be one of the sweetest kitten photos I've ever seen. Peaches, the Wonder Kitten, was submitted to the Funniest Cat Picture Show and Tell.

Photo of Peaches, the Wonder Kitten
photo © About.com Member nspannos

Peaches was only about six weeks old when she was rescued from a kill center. She was in critical condition with a diaphragmatic hernia. She fully recovered after surgery, and is the light of her adoptive mom's life. Peaches is just as sweet as her photo, according to her mom.

See More Funny Cats | Share Your Funny Cat Picture

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