Monday, January 31, 2011

Togetherness!

HUGO:

I am pleased at how quickly Ayla, Iza, and Marley are getting along!  Here they are in the cat tree together for the FIRST time...
They all seemed quite calm about it...
 Marley wanted to play with Ayla, but she just said "Don't push it"!
So he just relaxed...
The Big Thing called to me to come join them, but by the time I got there, Marley and Ayla had hopped down.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Easy Like Sunday

"Food is our common ground, a universal experience."  James Beard

Things continue to progress well.  Yesterday at dinnertime, Iza and Marley ate together (while Hugo ate some honeydew melon between them)...
Later that evening, with 3 little piles of dry crunchies on the floor, Ayla dashed in to get some.  Then left quickly...
THIS morning, Ayla reluctantly joined Iza and Marley for canned breakfast.  I made sure to offer her favorite (Evo 95% Chicken and Turkey).  Ayla stayed long enough to finish hers...
And, this afternoon, Ayla ate right next Marley!  I was surprised, She doesn't even like to eat this close to Iza...
They have been making progress on the cat tree, too.  But that's for tomorrow...

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Marley Updates, 2

AYLA:
Im not crazy about the new kid, but Im getting used to him.  He taps me when we pass!  Hugo says he is OK, Iza says he is OK, and The Big Thing says hes stayin,  So I guess I have no choice.  He IS kinna cute...

He likes ta crawl unner things like I do...
He got into my hidey-hole a couple times, but TBT hasnt got a good picture of that yet.

He likes ta sit on TBT's lap at the computer.  Iza doesnt seem ta mind being near him...
And Iza doesnt mind him on the cat tree with her...

She even gave him some advice on the best places ta perch and nap...
He is still gettin ta know us better.  Here, he is caught engaging in a cautious butt sniff.  Iza dint even know it, but I saw him...
He likes ta stay close to TBT cuz he gets lots of attenshun.  He sits on the chair near him...
Or takes a nap on him....

So he is settlin himself right in.  Well, I got used ta Iza.  I spose I'll get used ta Marley...

THE BIG THING:   I just noticed that we had our 75,000th visitor 2 days ago!  I am amazed.  Thank you all for coming to visit us...

Friday, January 28, 2011

Marley Updates

THE BIG THING:  First, Ayla and Iza are satisfied if I write about Marley for a FEW days.  They understand "new".  And Marley is learnin about the computer and "Being language" from Iza (who is really good with it).  Iza says that, from his progress, it might only take a week.  That's good news to me; I want the cats to take back their blog as soon as possible.  It's THEIR blog, not mine.  I am just an occasional visitor.

I have some glamor shots for Marley already.  He loves the camera (or is it that the camera loves him?) but he is certainly photogenic!

Glamor Shots...




We had the first whole day without any growls or hissing yesterday.  Ayla seems to have calmed down.  Iza and Marley were already getting along well.  The Ayla test came last night when Marley was nappin behind me on the chair as I watched TV.  Ayla hopped up on the arm of the chair and was surprised to see Marley there.  But she didn't hiss this time.  And she stayed there a few minutes.

That's not to say that anyone will be curled up with Marley real soon, but that WILL happen.  I look forward with confidence to getting a picture of all 3 curled up together some day.

They all ate close together last night at dinnertime.  Pictures of that tomorrow.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

About Marley

IZA:  OK, I wasnt sure about this new boycat at first, but we are gettin along pretty good.  He is playful like me!  Ayla isnt so happy about him, but thats HER problem.

Me, I like him.  We have tried out wrasslin.  He isnt anny good at it, but he'll learn.  He taps me on the side or back sometimes.  He isnt big enuf yet ta make a fair game of it.  TBT says "maybe a year".  But he is cute an he tries.  I could use some competition.  Ayla is just too small.  And he DID pounce me from the ottoman yesserday, so hes got potential.

I love the way he plays wif toys a lot like I do, an we did bat a ball back an forth a bit today.  The new kid is a "comer".  I'll know more over the next few weeks.

And I am happy to report that Ayla didn't hiss at him a single time today!

THE BIG THING:  I don't know a lot about Marley's past, and I probably never will know the details.  I know that he grew up in a shelter and seems to have gotten good vet treatment.  He seems to have been born about August 16th and first received shelter vet care in October.  He was adopted out about Christmas Day as a gift at a PetsMart.

My own vet gave him a A+ on his physical condition.  He's been neutered.  He has had only dry food all his life, but is adjusting to our premium canned foods both well (digestically) and enthusiastically.  I've been giving him the poultry stuff Ayla and Iza love, but I have fishie flavors left over from LC's days and I will start trying him on those next week.  If he likes them, he will get more.  If not, we will stick to poultry flavors and the other cans will go to a shelter.

He went from the shelter to a very nice and loving lady here in my small town.  He was her first cat and she discovered (sadly) that she was VERY allergic.  So she sought a better home for him.  There were 2 interested parties for adopting him.  I'm sure the other one would have been good too, but I convinced her I was the better place.  I AM persuasive...  ;)

He is named after Bob Marley, a musician.  I don't know him well, but I know "of" him.  But it's a nice name regardless.  I might change it after some discussions with him, but probably not.  "Marley" sounds cool.  And there are good possiblities with the name.  "Gnarly-Marley".  Or if eating cat grass. "Barley-Marley",  Or if riding a motorcycle, "Harley-Marley".  LOL!    Ok, I'm lame with names...

Good thing, too.  Ayla and Iza got their names from the book 'Clan of the Cave Bear'.  The male names sound too weird.  "Creb".  "Brun".  "Durc".  Time to find better names.  I think "Marley" is a good one.

Sorry I couldn't get any pictures that applied to the post.  I used up all the vet pictures yesterday.  Some tomorrow on the cat tree...

REMINDER!  Hugo The Traveling Hippo needs a new place to visit. 
He comes with a note/photo book, souvenir pouch to add too, and toys and treats for the hosts...  Contact us if you are interested in having Hugo visit you.  He is a great visitor and converses well with both kitties and Beins!

Two Things

THE BIG THING:  Busy, Busy...

First, yes many of you were correct.  Marley had his first visit to our regular vet.  I wanted to make sure no appropriate shots were missed, I wanted my vet to give him a good looking-over, and I wanted to get his previous medical records recorded.

I tried to take pictures of Ayla and Iza's vet visit last year, but (spookily) the camera recorded no pictures.  This time they came out!

Now, Marley isn't ready to start posting himself (Iza has taken him under paw and is teaching him this stuff as best she can but it will take some time).  Fortunately, I was there at the vet and can help.  So I will speak for Marley...

I got put in the PTU and droven off to a vet.  I've seen them before...
Beins just walk and talk around ya like ya really arent there...
 I got pulled out of the PTU (TBT did it, and gently).  He grabbed my back haunches together and slid me right out.  That was actually nice.  I've been pulled out worse.

The table was COLD and TBT made me stay on it.  I squirmed my best, but I couldnt get off.  For a Being with only 2 arms, he seems like an octopus!  I was REALLY unhappy...
Then they took me away to a room.  They shoved something up spot #13!  And they stole some blood.  Undoubtably for bad reasons. 

Then Dr Jeffrey came out and held me.  He is very nice and I calmed down a bit. He told me he hadda do some things I wouldnt like, but that they were good for me to have a long healthy life.  I dint like those things, but a "long healthy life" sounds like a good deal!
He asked fer a better picture with me.  He cares...
Here Dr Jeffrey is listenin ta my heart.  It was werkin good.  But I'm keepin my tail end covered.  I dont wanna another probe up my butt!
 The assistin lady had a hard time keepin me on the table...
But he brought me HOME.  I was worried about that, like, ya know, mebbe I had failed a test at the vet place.  Apparently, I passed all the tests with flying colors.  No fleas, no mites, not worms, and Im vaccinated against everything but asteroids!  I go back in 2 weeks for some other shot (BAST), but TBT says I'm safe fer a whole YEAR after that.  A year is almost FOREVER!  YAY!

I turn it back over to TBT:

THE BIG THING:  Second, Hugo the Hippo says he has had a great time visitin here and marveled at the entry of a new kitty, but it is time to plan his next journey.  Any interested hosts, please contact us.  Our email is in the banner, or leave a comment.  There is cool stuff that travels with Hugo.  Souvenirs about where he has visited.  A notebook of letters and photos.  Some guidelines about his visit.  Toys.  Treats.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Cats are Fascinating!

HUGO:  Really they are.  Every place I travel to has cats (and sometimes other animals) of different colors, personalities, and numbers.  I love getting to know each of them in the short time I visit.  Ayla, Iza, and now Marley are no exceptions!

One of the more fascinating things about cats is THE FRAP (I've learned that stands for Frenetic Random Activity Period) at sundown.  Now, Ayla and Iza have been rather calm since I've arrived, but I think they were just trying to keep to their best behavior for a guest.

Last night, with Marley loose in the house,  FRAP finally broke out.  The Big Thing assures me it is normal for them too.  I WAS wondering...  We all had dinner about 5 PM.  At 5:30, they all went nuts (well, not TBT, although he says he sometimes participates).   

Iza and Marley suddenly started to "wrassle".  It was all in good fun, but cats ARE pretty aggressive about it.  I assume it is a predator thing because they all seem to involve attack and chase activities.  Anyway, they wrassled very briefly and Ayla jumped OVER them, and they all seemed OK about it.  Then, all of a sudden, Ayla, Iza, and Marley were ALL charging about the house, up and down from floor to chair, to floor, to cat tree.  Then back and forth along the hallway.   And batting toy mice as they did so...

It only lasted about 10 minutes, then they were all just sitting around licking their furs.  It was sort of like the Grand Finale at a fireworks festival (I saw one of those in, um, July?).  FRAP never ceases to amaze me; QUITE impressive! 

Ayla and Iza were in the bedroom grooming each other...
 Marley rested in the TV room under some protective shelter...

Iza and Marley are getting along just great.  Ayla is not so happy.  She confided to me later that she is really very conservative and hates it when "things change".  And TBT mentioned that, when an intruder cat comes up on the deck, Iza just watches it but Ayla hisses at it.  So I guess Ayla has "issues".

I'm just glad she is fine with ME.  She is great in conversation and has a wider knowledge of the world than Iza does.  Iza, on the other leg, is very friendly and playful; the kind of friend you would be happy to just sit around with and chew riverplants by the bank.  I'm not sure about Marley yet.  He seems playful but also watchful and self-controlled.  My guess is that he will be the Alpha Cat soon.  Iza will be surprised...

Well anyway, today Ayla was using the sisal rope to scratch her claws and invited me to join her (not knowing that Iza had made the same invitation before realizing I don't have their kind of claws).  But I DO have a part that can stand some scratching...


OOOOHHH YYYEEAHHH.......

And the other end is good too...

WOW!  That stuff is better than tree bark!  I need to get some when I return home eventually.  At least most cathomes have some...

Whoa!  What's this?  TBT just put Marley in  a "PTU" (they call it) in the Noisy Machine and drove off!  I better post this and wait to see what happens...

More next time!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Marley Meets Ayla and Iza

THE BIG THING:  Well, I decided it was time for everyone to meet this afternoon.  I'm continuing to write for everyone today; Marley can't and Ayla and Iza are pretty upset.  I don't know WHAT they might say!

So, I opened the Mewsroom door.  Instead of Marley coming out, Iza ran IN!  She stared at him, flattened her ears, and gave him a low growl... 
Marley reacted calmly.  I guess growing up in a shelter, he was prepared for that sort of thing.  More about that tomorrow.  After that, Iza jumped up on the old cat platform and glared at him.

Marley sauntered into the bedroom, then into the bathroom where Ayla was at her usual perch on the windowsill.  She didn't growl at him, she HISSED angrily!  Several times...
He sniffed around a few seconds, then wandered back out into the bedroom, only to come face to face with Iza suddenly.  She did a full POOF!
She backed up and decided to play Door Warden, one of her favorite tricks to annoy another cat... 
Marley had to wait there patiently for her to leave.  I went to the kitchen and rattled the treat jar after a few minutes.  Iza came in and I gave her a few.  Then I went to the bedroom door and rattled it again.  Ayla  came out, stared, hissed, then jumped over Marley.  That's one of HER favorite tricks...

So Marley was free to explore the rest of the house with me following him around.  I don't think Ayla or Iza are going to get physical, but it's good to be careful.  Marley DID stay pretty close to me on his own.   At least HE is reacting calmly...

Later, I was sitting in the chair and noticed he was under it, grabbing at anything within reach.  My shoes got batted a few times.  I waited with the camera aimed at a squiggle.  He found it.  The claws of death dragged it under...
 So I dropped another squiggle.  He found that one right away...
A few minutes afterwards he was on the move again.  He got up into the cat tree for the first time.  I was surprised.  When he was exploring yesterday, he seemed floorbound, not getting up on anything.  I thought maybe he disliked any heights.   But he went right up this time.  Maybe it was the rattle ball I tied there for him (he lady who had him said those were his favorite toys).  He DID go straight for the rattle ball...
He hopped down, wandered the living room, and went back to the tree.  This time he played with a toy at the middle level...
The next time he went up on the tree, Iza was there.  They both just stared for a while.  One low growl from Iza, then they both sat quietly for a few minutes...  
Then both hopped off in separate directions.  Iza and Marley will get along fine.  I just put out dinner and Iza and Marley both ate peacably in the kitchen.  Ayla came in, hissed and went back to the bedroom.  She will be the one Marley has to win over.

I brought her dinner to her in the bedroom.  No sense in giving her anything to feel resentful about.

BTW, Hugo decided to watch everything from the safety of a bookcase shelf.  Wise Hippo...

Monday, January 24, 2011

Marley Update

THE BIG THING:  Well, things aren't going perfectly, but it could be worse.

Marley spent the whole day and night Saturday in the Mewsroom, where Hugo and I joined him for company often.  Marley was quite comfortable with Hugo, but he was unsure about me at first.  So I would bring a book in, sit in the center of the room, and just let him get used to me (and taking pictures).

I was pleased when (after several visits) he came over and rubbed against me.  I stroked him a few times.  Skeeter, LC, Ayla, and Iza simply hid for a couple of days at first.  So this is actually a very positive sign.

He stayed by himself quietly that first night and Sunday morning.  He is handling canned cat food just fine.  Yay!  Sunday afternoon, I noticed that Ayla and Iza were napping in the bedroom, so I quietly closed the door.    That allowed me to carry Marley around the upper floor of the house for a while, so he could see, sniff, and listen.

I would stand in the entrance to a room and let him look around for a few minutes, then move to the next.  That went along about 15 minutes, and I brought him back to the Mewsroom and more food.  Don't want to overwhelm the little guy.  We did that twice more on Sunday.

The last time, I did the tour with Ayla and Iza loose.  I would let him see them from a distance, then a little closer.  Iza offers a low growl, but seems curious.  Ayla hisses and runs!  Sometimes when she passes the closed door, she hisses under it.  My guess is that Iza will accept Marley a lot sooner than Ayla does.

I went back and checked to see how Ayla reacted when Iza first arrived here.  Apparently Ayla hissed for 5 days before accepting that Iza wasn't going away.  So there will be a few more days of that.

This morning, I let him walk around (with Ayla and Iza in the bedroom).  The basement door was closed (way too many places for a worried kitty to hide).  He enjoyed exploring quite a bit...

He seemed fascinated by the plant soil smells...

He enjoyed crawling through tight spaces that were previously Ayla's exclusive domain...

When I spun the ball in the ring toy, he ran right to it and played there almost 10 minutes...

He crawled into Ayla's hidey-hole under the cabinets, but the picture was SO blurry I deleted it.  He will be in there again, and I will get a better picture.

We even sat down for a few minutes.  He's not QUITE comfortable with that yet, but I can tell he liked  it...
Its hard to get pictures of a kitty who doesn't stop moving!

Back in the Mewsroom to calm down.  He ate some more canned food, with Hugo as company...

Hugo reminded him that it may been awkward for a few days, but the other kitties would accept him eventually.  Hugo said "I've talked to both of them for a few days and they are really quite nice.  They are just surprised at your sudden appearance, that's all". 
Marley thanked him and gave him a smooch...
So Hugo tried his hand (um, tongue ) at grooming.  I don't know if he was very good at it, but Marley was appreciative...
Then I introduced him to the electronic squeaky mouse.  He LOVED it!
Tomorrow, I think I will let them all meet freely (under very close supervision).