Raven and her box

Mom had out the sucky monster and asked dad to pick up my box so she could vacuum under it, so he put it on top of the scanner on his desk. I’ve had this box since December 2008 when I came to live here. It’s special because Dad wrote my name on it. I haven’t been in my box in months, but since it moved, I had to check it out.

Raven in her box on the scannerIt was a little wobbly up there so I decided it might be more comfy to relax in my perch.

Raven going to perch

Mom told Dad he better hold on to my box so I didn’t fall.

Thanks Dad!

Posted in Cat antics | 16 Comments

My non-furry dilema

Last September I posted about being a “naked” kitty because I had been chewing the fur off my belly, legs, and tail. I went to the vet and he was pretty sure it’s an allergy of some sort. He gave me a shot of a steroid and we hoped that whatever I was allergic to would go away when winter came.

Winter came and went and I’m still trying to make the back half of my body into a short-haired kitty. Basically, any fur from my belly-button down my back legs, to the tip of my tail is a target of chewing & licking. Mom took me to the vet on Friday and asked if my fur removal could be a response to abdominal pain. Our former kitty Felix had small cell lymphoma and the first sign he was sick is that he developed a bowel obstruction due to severe constipation. I need a laxative twice a day to help prevent constipation, and Mom wondered if I could have early bowel disease, which could cause discomfort and be the real cause of my fur removal.  The vet said it’s possible I have some degree of bowel disease because it’s very common in adult cats but he doesn’t think pain is involved in whatever is going on.

There’s no easy way to figure out why I’m biting my fur off. The vet suggested we move from our current home in the valley to our mountain or coastal  home so that I could be in a different environment and get away from environmental allergens. That was kind-of a joke….we don’t have another home!

Since we can’t move to our nonexistant other home, he also suggested we could try different foods like venison, rabbit, or duck for a month at a time to see if that helps. I’ve already had all fish eliminated from my diet. I’m not the most adventurous eater, so changing my food is not going to be easy. And since we don’t know what I might be allergic to, it’s just a guess as to which food might be better for me.

After a long discussion, we decided another steroid injection was the best way to go for now. It should give me relief from both allergies and any bowel inflammation. Being on steroids comes with risks, so it’s not the ideal long-term solution. But I also don’t want to be miserable and keep chewing all my fur off.

Here I am sniffing my first new food, rabbit (sorry to all you pet bunnies out there). It smells funny and I gave it a little taste but spit it out. Beef & buffalo smelled awful and I wouldn’t even taste it. Maybe the lamb will tempt me, but I doubt it. I love my chicken food!

Raven sniffing a new food

While at the store buying me some new types of food, Dad knew I wouldn’t be happy having my mealtime routine changed, so he bought me a new “hat”. Dad and I have a game where he puts things on my head and calls it a hat. I’ll let it sit there until I turn over or get up. It’s one of the silly games we play.

Raven with yellow toy on her head


Posted in Health, Random musings | 29 Comments

Plot Boiler – Book Review

Here’s book review #2 for today.

Plot Boiler book image

Plot Boiler is the 5th book in Ali Brandon’s A Black Cat Bookshop Mystery series. Darla is coordinating a neighborhood Fourth of July block party where, you guessed it, someone turns up dead. I was surprised that it took 125  pages before the dead body made it’s appearance since the book is just shy of 300 pages long. This didn’t make the book any less enjoyable, it was just something that caught my attention. The first part of the book sets up various characters and lines of suspicion, and the story progresses quickly after Livvy is found dead (no spoiler there as it’s on the back cover). All the characters in this series are interesting and it’s enjoyable to follow their lives. We also get to see more of Roma, a little Italian Greyhound who belongs to one of Darla’s young employees. Roma isn’t Hamlet’s favorite bookstore visitor, but I hope they become better friends as time goes on. Hamlet is an engaging kitty character. He’s a typical cat with “catitude”, but he’s also intelligent, observant, spunky, and enjoys walking around the neighborhood on a harness.

Four paws up for Plot Boiler. Hopefully it won’t be too long before the next book in this series is available.

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Pouncing on Murder – Book Review

Mom took today off because I need to go to the vet later this afternoon. While I enjoy sun puddles and naps in the closet, she’s going to post two more book reviews while she kills time before tormenting me with the carrier, a long car ride, and a visit to the vet. Actually, my vet is really nice and very gentle, but I’d rather not visit him.  We’ll give you an update later this weekend about my health. It’s nothing critical, but mom has some concerns about the underlying cause of my continued determination to remove my lower-body furs and wants to talk to the vet about it.

Pouncing on Murder book image

Pouncing on Murder  is the 4th book in Laurie Cass’ A Bookmobile Cat Mystery series, where Minnie and her cat Eddie are on the road again in the library book mobile. Of course there’s a murder that needs to be solved, and Minnie and Eddie are sure to play a part in catching the killer.

After reading Arsenic and Old Books by Miranda James, which does’t have a lot of “chatter” about the characters’ personal lives, I realized that the author of the Bookmobile Cat Mystery series provides much more back story about the main characters and the inhabitants of the little town where Minnie & Eddie live. I tend to read those parts fairly quickly, but others may really enjoy that aspect of these books. In Pouncing on Murder, there are some significant changes in Minnie’s personal life, and hints at more changes to come.

I want to give this book 4 paws up, but there’s a critical element at the end of the mystery that didn’t make sense to me. So, I have to hold back just a bit and give 3 paws up & a little questioning mrreow.

SPOILER ALERT — If you want to know what happens at the end of the book that confused me, click the image below to read the text. Click your browser’s back button when you’re done reading it.

Spoiler alert

Posted in Book review | 5 Comments

Arsenic and Old Books – Book Review

Arsenic and Old Books by Miranda JamesMom read another really good book this week. It’s titled Arsenic and Old Books  and it’s the 6th (and newest) book in Miranda James’ A Cat in the Stacks Mystery series.

Mom likes Miranda James’ writing style. It’s easy to read and flows well. Unlike most other cozy mystery series, the main character is a man, Charlie Harris. Most books of this genre have female lead characters, and it’s nice to get away from “girl stuff” and read about a guy – actually, a southern gentleman. Charlie and his Maine Coon cat Diesel make a wonderful pair, and Diesel is seamlessly woven into Charlie’s daily life.  It’s easy to tell that the author knows her kitties. Diesel has a charming personality and I won’t be spoiling anything by saying that the author does not let Diesel eat chicken that’s been cooked with onions or cookies that contain raisins.

There was one minor element of the story line that was fairly obvious to us, but it didn’t detract from the story as a whole, which kept our attention until the end.

The book concludes with a short story When Charlie Met Diesel . Like all perfect human-cat matches, Diesel chose Charlie! :-)

We give this book 4 paws up.

Posted in Book review | 16 Comments