Pet Tips 'n' Tales©
Cat Napping in Bird Feeder
- Here Birdie-Birdie -
Max gives the terms "Take-out Dinner," "Fast Food," and "Dinner on the Run" new meanings! Max, a 6-year-old neutered male, is smarter than most cats and as you can see, he hopes he is smarter than most birds! Max is lucky to be alive because he was found abandoned on a country road as a kitten.
After work Kay was focused on driving home along the long, winding country road. She was anxious to get started on her ranch chores with their 100 beef cows and calves. Out of the corner of her eye, she spotted something beside the tall, wild grass on the highway's shoulder.
"I stopped, backed up, and there was a kitten!" explains a shocked Kay. "I mean in the middle of nowhere! There were no houses for several miles. I was instantly angry. Someone had cruelly dropped him off to starve. This nightmare often happens out here. People drop off cats in farming areas assuming a farm can support them.
Times have changed; many of the farms in our area are owned by residents who are retired, unemployed, or on assistance. They are struggling to pay their taxes. Many no longer have animals or can just barely support their animals. There is no way they can be financially responsible or burdened with another pet. Barn cats are often left fending for themselves. And here was another one needing a human's help."
Kay climbed out of her truck, walked toward the kitten, and a whole new version of the game of hide-and-seek began. "He ran and hid, crouching down in the tall grass.
Luckily for the kitten, I was faster and more determined than he was. Imagine someone leaving this helpless baby to starve! I caught him, and then saw three more kittens. Try as I might, I could not catch them. I even went back the next day, but I could not find them. The kittens were probably some other animal's late-night snack. Thinking of them still haunts me today.
When I climbed back into the car, I lay the kitten on my chest up by my neck. He cuddled and I talked to him on the drive home. Maybe this has something to do with his habit of still thinking he should fit up there today.
When I first arrived home with him as a kitten, we were already 'maxed out' on pets, so we named him Max. He is a full-grown cat now but when I am in my favorite chair, he still loves curling up and sleeping on my shoulder and he is now far too big! He also loves sleeping on the computer's mouse pad. Somehow that seems fitting.
My husband admits that Max is on the spoiled side. But so are we. When we ask for a kiss, Max gives us his Eskimo-kitty version and rubs his cold, wet nose on the tip of our nose.
After we've been away from the ranch all afternoon, Max comes running over to us just like a dog, and he acts like he really missed us. We have seven other cats, and none of them has ever done this. Because they are cats, we don't expect they ever will either," laughs Kay.
Last winter, a beautiful orange tom cat mysteriously arrived at Kay and Andy's ranch. Another case of dumping. None of their neighbors has cats. This makes one wonder about the intelligence of humans. How much education will it take for us to learn that neutering or spaying are so necessary and that dumping is so inhumane?
Digesting petroleum products seems like an oxymoron. There are products available at pet and feed stores etc. that contain enzymes which help support normal and healthy pet digestion.
Cyndi, a Tips 'n' Tales reader in Mena, Arizona, volunteers at For the Sake of Animals Shelter. "We've given the homeopathic remedy Rescue Remedy to shelter cats and dogs when they're scared of car rides to the vet for their neuter or spay appointments. If the animals show signs of fright, a quick drop or two either in the mouth or on their ear usually makes the trip more enjoyable for all involved. It appears to relieve their stress.
Shoot, even our son uses it for an almost instant relief from an anxiety attack. Recently, we gave my son's cat Rescue Remedy before his car ride, and the cat rode fine for the first time."
**The above information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
Mary Ellen & Miss Wings Pet Tips 'n' Tales Newspaper Columnist
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