(Nicki keeps her eye out for her morning dove and pigeon friends) I received an email from One lucky Duck today . Attached was an offer:10% of proceeds from all pet product sales would be going to several animals related causes. The motivating factor behind this offer is a rather wonderful adoption story -along with lovely photos of lucky Leon Quinn . Sweet.
There is a new member in our family:meet Maxx. He is 6 years old, rescued from a shelter , loves women (and is learning to love men), and looks like a horse when he trots here and there.
Also: Inky the wonder cat's brother "Toughie" has had surgery on the lumps on his head . Happily they were just cysts . Things got briefly complicated when Toughie decided to rip out all of his stitches - risking infection. A second surgery was done to clean his wound and stitch him up again and he is healing well-with the help of a radar dish collar.
(Photos of Toughie to come)
Perhaps the best news of today came from Fred of "One Bark At A Time": his photos of wonderful dogs can again be found online in his newest blog "Pound Dogs" . It was such a nice surprise to see this good friend of animals had come back to life, so to speak.
On a down note, Fred's dog Rocky is doing poorly. What a year 2010 has been.
With all that has gone on this year, personally, professionally and globally, we are chomping at the bit to get out of 2010 and into a better 2011 ASAP. The happy holidays and New Year can not come fast enough!
Sandi has watched the clean up action from the bedroom window and I can tell you-neither she nor Nicki is a fan of the load noises made by all the machinery required to turn decades old trees into inch sized pieces of mulch.
Sandi thinks the kitchen should be open 24-7. The vet has warned her that her weight IS an issue but she has yet to associate her love of eating with increased inactivity and weight gain. She covets her sister's food and this has made Nicki somewhat frantic around food. I have tired to find ways to feed them to avoid this -with little luck.
Lately Sandi has taken to chasing Nicki whenever she gets the chance but Nicki is nimble and has found that jumping to high places ends things quickly. Her favorite new spot is on the VERY top of my desk.
Sandi then retreats to the kitchen and if I happen to be there she does all she can to try and get my attention so that I may understand just how much she really wants to be fed. Again.If it appears that I am not caving in to her demands Sandi stands up and hangs on my clothes with all of her weight. She has ruined quiet a few pants and skirts that way. She is lucky I love her...
Lola's owners did an amazing job of blanketing the neighborhood with signs when she went missing. The signs are in color and there was a reward offered. Queens Crap did it's usual great job of getting the word out about Lola. And telling the story of how she was "found". The store in question is rather new to the neighborhood and you get a funny feeling when you walk by it-day or night. They have their dogs in baby cribs...I thought this was strange until my sister-in-law told me other stores do this too.
Here is the interesting thing:Lola's signs are still up, weeks after the fact-all over the place-on every corner's lamp post. I kind of like to think they are there as a reminder to whoever took Lola/sold Lola/ bought Lola/returned Lola/pocketed the reward.
This is not the first time someone has put up signs saying someone has taken their dog & as a life long resident of this area I have begun to wonder what has become of the lovely neighborhood I grew up in...
Both Nicki & Sandi love to chit chat. Usually this happens when they are left in a room alone and I am elsewhere, working . Suddenly a plaintive cry can be heard. Usually, I go in search of them,as, in theory, I want them to know I hear them and care about what might be going on. Both cats have a habit of reacting with surprise when I approach-as if they had no idea I was home and are really happy to see me. The interaction often ends with a kiss(which they hate-see Sandi's reaction from earlier today-not her happy face!) or a scratch behind the ears or a toss of their favorite toy.
Ever since they were kittens they have also done this sort of thing right after bed time and the lights are out . Too often it happens just as I am about to fall off to sleep-just as I have hit that edge of blissful semi consciousness. I think they are "saying" :Where have you gone? Why are the lights out? Aren't we getting fed again? Can't we play? The particular meow they make sounds so sad & lonely that I have always pulled myself out of the nice, warm bed to see what was up. I figure it is part of the responsive agreement we have.
Maggie joined the family for Mother's Day and Jean taught her to "find the treat". It reminded me of those guys one used to see all over the seedier parts of the city, years ago. They would set themselves up on cardboard boxes and lure in passers by with the chance of making a few bucks. I always knew to pass quickly as rumor had it pick pockets worked the crowds that gathered. NO chance of that here. Just lots of fun to be had!
Sandi just found this pot of daisies to be too much to resist and tried forcing her face into the stems. Not sure why she did that but boy was it funny to watch. Happy Mother's Day Mom!
From all of us!
P.S. The back story to these photos : I woke up at 4a.m. this morning and tried reading in an attempt to lull myself back to sleep. Sandi & Nicki were thrilled to have me up so early and stuck right by my side , leaving only to inspect the daisies. The first photo is of Sandi, as the sun rose and the birds began to awaken and sing.
Nicki & Sandi got quite the scare yesterday evening when they heard we had stopped by the animal shelter (on the way home from the doctor -just making sure my wrist was not broken-a long story...) . They heard a story about a very small dog named Maize and a kitten with no name and no brothers or sisters -both in need of a home. While the dog is out of the question as our apartment building does not allow dogs...the cat is another matter. (Ely is convinced we could dress up this small dog to look like a cat and as it is an older "Mill Rescue" this dog is quite amazing in the it does not bark at all so barking would not be a problem-until Sandi attacks him for invading her territory and eating her food...)
The real reason we stopped by the shelter was to see what was going on as Ely's friends are interested in adopting a dog. And there are many to choose from right now. We also found out the yearly adoptathon is going to be held onMay 1-2, 2010. I went last year with my uncle, aunt & cousin and that is where they found their beloved Maggie. It sounds as if pre-registration might be an ideal thing to do now if you are planning on adopting during this marathon weekend as things were very hectic last year and doing the paperwork & calling the references can take some time . We also heard -consider this a rumor as we could not confirm it-that pre-registration means you will get a $10. credit towards adopting. If you do go in to pre-register this weekend , please stop by and say "hello" to the small black kitten, the pudgy Chihuahua named Maize and the black dog to her right and tell all 3 we would have taken them home but for Sandi and our building 's tough pet rules.
(About above photo : side profile of Maggie/2 of my current favorite postage stampsand our latest favorite postcard picked up in a Barnes & Noble bookstore during the famous Cape Cod -50th birthday weekend)
Sandi LOVES it when I change the sheets. She is somehow able to sense when I am about to change the bed sheets ( much as I now try to be very quiet about it) & in she bounds , leaping for the bed before I am even able to get the sheet on.
Pretty much since she was a kitten we have then gone on to play hide & go seek. (or peak-a-boo) I theatrically ask "Where's Sandi?" as she hides beneath the sheet,motionless and almost invisible. All of the sudden, Sandi skits out, happy as a clam. Best of all are the sheet ghosts she likes to charge after. (Sheet ghosts appear when you lift the sheet up, get it air borne and then allow it to gently float down. As the sheet settles Sandi attacks the remaining air pockets as if they contained mice or fluttering birds. ) This routine never gets old for Sandi and she would go on for hours -if only I would play along for that long.
Needless to say, Sandi has forever changed the way I will think about sheets.
P.S. Just a word of caution: if you are thinking of trying this with your cat-beware of one thing: make sure to cut your cat's nails before you do this . We were once playing with a very nice set of sky blue sheets when all of the sudden I heard this sound... : the sound of tearing cotton as Sandi's nails dug in just a bit too deep. And each time the sheet is washed, the tear grows just a bit. (It is a pretty sheet so I haven't yet had the heart to toss it out...)
I once read that a bored dog is a bad dog. The theory is that animals that are bored will get in trouble out of necessity, just to have something to do. (I think that is true of people too. ) With cats I do think you have to give them new challenges , toys and activities or they do shut down socially and they even age faster.(Like people do to, both mentally and physically) Boxes are the best fun around and they are free. I am lucky in that both of my cats tend to love new things and new challenges. If you take a box and cut a hole into it VIOLA! a new toy of sorts. Things get even more interesting as each cat trys to claim the box for their own or plays hide and seek with the other...
2 new lost signs in the neighborhood this week:rain had faded one. If you have seen either "Max" -please call their owners and help them make their way home. I ran into 3 wonderfully civic minded young girls who were gathered around the cat sign with concern written all over their faces & I told them I'd be posting it on my blog in hopes of helping in some way. (not sure they knew what a blog was!) They were hanging up signs of their own-hand made mini posters about being good to trees and turning off lights when you are not using them. I told them to keep up the good work as Earth Hour 2010was just around the corner. They had taped the signs to trees & I asked their permission to photograph the signs and post them on my blog for all to see. When I returned the next day with my camera all but one of the signs had either been removed or had blown away. Too bad. The world could use more "love trees!" & "Be nice to trees!" signs...
What an exciting year 2009 was for Nickiy & Sandi! Filled with the usual things plus a visit to the vet's to get shots for the first time in 4 years -boy were we shocked by THAT experience! 2010 promises to be just as wonderful-minus a vet visit-& we are awaiting Inky's arrival-when he has healed enough to go out for visits-and have been told he is the mirror image of Nicki! (Minus one leg, of course!)
As a family, we wish all of God's creatures, great & small, the best of New Years! We sincerely hope 2010 is a turning point for animals everywhere, for how they are treated and cared for .
As Mahatma Gandhi said:
"The greatness of a nation and it's moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated."
& Immanual Kant stated:
"We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."
We hope men & women everywhere live up to these standards in 2010 by treating animals with kindness, love and understanding.