Unglamorous me update

My allergies started bothering me again and I’ve done some nibbling on my furs. It’s mostly limited to the inside of my left thigh, which you can you can see in this unglamorous photo. I’ve also nibbled a little spot from beneath my tail, but it’s not too bad.

Mom called the vet and he said it’s hard to know what’s causing my allergies to flare up.

Mom thinks I react to chicken and fish, so I’ve been eating food that doesn’t contain those ingredients. But since I eat a commercial cat food and not prescription there’s always the possibility that there’s some unlabeled chicken or fish in my food.

There could also be some allergen in the air that’s causing me problems.  Who knows!  Grrrr!

The vet said it was okay to give me some oral steroid again. It’s taken a long time to grow back my furs and I don’t want to feel that miserable again, or look like I did a year ago! I’ll never have all my tummy furs back, but we’re trying to keep all the furs on my legs and tail.

I’ve been on medications for 12 days and my nibbling has stopped. Mom is going to try giving the medication every other day, and check with the vet to get his recommendation on how to proceed. Steroids are not a good long-term solution, but it might be necessary to keep me from chewing my furs off.

For those of you who are experienced with steroids, Raven is getting 1/4 of a 5 mg prednisolone pill. I think that’s a fairly low dose but I’m going to try every other day and hope it keeps her allergies in check. 

Posted in Health | 32 Comments

Unglamorous Litter Box Update

Due to my allergies, Mom has been reluctant to change anything in the house, including the brand of litter I use. But she’s fed up with the current brand and decided to try a new cat litter.

Out with the old – Dr. Elsey’s Precious Cat scoopable

We’ve used Dr. Elsey’s Precious Cat scoopable litter for years, but it doesn’t seem to work as well as it used to.

Clumps never get really hard or dry. Clumps that are against the side or bottom don’t come off the pan, and getting them off makes a sticky mess on the scooper and lots of broken pieces in the litter pan.

It’s so dusty that Mom refills my litter pan outside. She sets up a big fan to blow across the litter stream as she pours from a foot or two above the litter pan.  A noticeable coating of dust blows onto the ground around the litter pan. Even after that, there’s plenty of dust in the bathroom.

Mom read some online reviews and other have made the same criticisms about Precious Cat litter. Maybe the clay is coming from a different area or it’s being processed differently. Whatever the reason, it’s not what we want in a litter.

What we want in a clay litter

  • Hard clumping & easy scooping
  • Unscented
  • Reasonably low dust

In with the new – Fresh Step Ultra Unscented

After reading some reviews, Mom decided to try Fresh Step Ultra Unscented litter. She used Fresh Step years ago and liked it, so we’re giving it another try.

Mom bought a 25 pound box on sale for $9.99.

She poured the entire box into a litter pan and was amazed at how little dust wafted up. She did it outside, just in case there was lots of dust, but there wasn’t any. This is a litter she’d feel comfortable pouring inside the house.

As for clumping, this litter is making harder & drier clumps that are easier to scoop. So far, only one of my pees was against the side of the pan, but it came off easily. Hopefully that continues.

I think this might be our new favorite litter and Mom will have to buy more while its still on sale.

Posted in Product reviews | 11 Comments

Welcome back Coco Puff

Neighborhood kitty Coco Puff came to my patio this morning. She (or he) surprised Mom and was all the way up on the step to my sliding door where I lay and watch over my backyard.

When Coco Puff saw Mom, she went behind a planter on the patio and decided to do a bit of grooming.

I was in the front room, but I heard mom talking to Coco Puff and came to investigate.
Mom told Coco Puff she can stay as long as she doesn’t upset me. We enjoyed looking at each other for a while until Coco wandered off.

It’s forecast to be 110 degrees here today (already 92 at 11 a.m.), so Mom put a fresh bowl of water on a nearby door step for Coco. Coco was brave and went up to investigate, but didn’t drink anything. That’s good….Coco probably has lots of water around the neighborhood to drink.

I hope everyone has a safe Caturday. So many areas of the U. S. are battling rain, floods, fires, and heat! There’s a big fire about 80 miles north of us and we’re getting a lot of smoke. Between the heat and smoke, I’m missing out on my open window time! But fall is coming and the weather will be milder soon.

p.s. Mom got a pretty good look at Coco Puff’s nether regions and didn’t see any obvious boy bits. Mom suspects Coco is either a girl kitty or a neutered boy.

Posted in Neighborhood animals | 24 Comments

What eclipse?


Mom says I’m not allowed to look at the sun, so I couldn’t see the eclipse. All I noticed is that my sunpuddle got very dim.  We had about 80% solar eclipse in Northern California.

Raven with the eclipse

Mom used a Chewy box to make an eclipse viewer.  It’s like one of those “pinhole” viewers, except you use a pair of binoculars to get a bigger image.

Eclipse viewer using binoculars

Dad was at work, where someone set up a telescope to view the eclipse. He got this neat photo through the telescope.

Partial solar eclipse image

I hope you all enjoyed the eclipse, or at least had a great Monday!

Posted in Cat antics | 21 Comments

My Kitty Wellness Exam

Monday is usually a great day for me because Mom is home and I get extra window time. But today she took me to the vet for my wellness exam and rabies vaccination. I tried hiding in my carrier as long as possible, but eventually I had to come out.

Mom told the vet she thinks I’ve been eating more and have lost a little weight. After the vet did his usual poking and prodding, he gave a good listen to my heart and felt my neck for any signs that my thyroid gland might be getting enlarged. I’ll be 13 this year, so I’m getting to the age where “senior” diseases like an overactive thyroid start showing up. He thought everything was sounding and feeling good and told mom to monitor my weight and and heart rate at home. Being desperate for food or having a pounding heartbeat would mean I need a recheck.

I had a little setback on my allergies and I’ve nibbled some fur off a back leg. That means no treats (potato chips, butter, ice cream) and no backyard adventures and lying in the grass.

Since I’m doing so well on a particular brand of food, the vet said it’s a good idea to stock up. We have a 6-month supply but will add a little more to the pantry. He said IAMS veterinary diets was recently bought out by Royal Canin and they’ve had to switch many of their patients’ food.

Even though Mom forgot to bring my hidey blanket and I got a shot, it was a good vet visit and I got a clean bill of health.

And we got to see this adorable painting that was in the exam room.

Tomorrow will be a better day. Dad will be home with me and he won’t take me to the vet!

I hope you all have a fantastic week.

Posted in Health | 22 Comments