Aby-a-Day – August 31: When Jacoby Met Angel (Friday Flashback)

August is the month I met my husband, our anniversary is in August and we got Jacoby in August, and it’s Tessie’s birthday month. For some reason, though, August always makes me think of when Jake and Angel first met.


Angel really adored Jake when he first arrived.


Jake loved her at first sight.


I mean, she doesn’t really ever sleep with anycat. But she did with Kitten!Jake.


That’s why it’s so distressing that she hisses at him now anytime he comes near her.


Maybe someday they’ll be cuddle buddies like this again.

Abys in Need – Bugsy in Marin County (URGENT)

This is super sad, and very urgent, especially considering this guy’s age.

My best friend died last week and left her 12.5 year old Aby, Bugsy. Bugsy is presently at the Marin Humane Society, taken there by the sheriff after my friend’s death. He family has given me the authority to find Bugsy a home. I want to get Bugsy out of the Humane Society and I cannot keep a cat due to allergies. Like all Abys I have ever met, he is a great personality. And a beauty. However, you should know that he has a medical condition. He has some kind of kidney disease, diagnosed about a year ago. The Humane Society told me that if he had a medical condition that they believe makes him unadoptable, they will euthanize him. That directive could come any day, ergo some urgency.

Please email or call me. I would greatly appreciate any advice. I don’t want to see poor Bugsy die. He should still have some good years left.

How tragic! If I still lived in San Francisco, I’d be there in a heartbeat to pick him up! I don’t know if Purebreds Plus is aware of this guy, but I sent an email to the woman who fosters Abys (and who I got Angel from). I checked the shelter’s website, and apparently he isn’t up for adoption right now; at least, I don’t see him on their adoptable cats page. I also can’t find his photo anywhere, but it’s all happened pretty fast.

Poor old man. He loses his human and ends up in the shelter, all in one week. I hope he can be rescued. Please respond directly to Gail (415-979-9594) or gmmcmahon@comcast.net if you are able to help.

Aby-a-Day – August 30: Does she or doesn’t she?

I got this wonderful soft, floppy stuffed kitty and was amazed to see how closely its colour matched Angel’s fur.


For the record, it is incredibly difficult to find stuffed toy kitties with short hair that are solid mahogany or caramel brown with no white or tabby markings.


I was very pleased with this kitty, needless to say.


Angel…somewhat less so.


But she’s adaptable.

Aby-a-Day – August 29: Wordless Wednesday (Face off)


Aby-a-Day – August 28: No bad dreams allowed (they make you move too much) (Cartoon Tuesday)

One thing that Jacoby has adopted as his personal job is protecting me at night. He sleeps on or near me every night. This cartoon was inspired by him sleeping on me, as I posted yesterday.


I always sleep more soundly when Jake’s around.

(Click cartoon to embiggen, or you can view all cartoons in Slideshow mode on Flickr.)

Aby-a-Day – August 27: My night watchcat (Hipstamatic Monday)

Jacoby loves to sleep on me at night.


I don’t know what he thinks will happen to me while I’m asleep, but he’s there for me.


I know it makes me sleep more soundly.

Abys in Need: Fritz and Lily in Mystic, CT

As the rabbits say, “one cloud feels lonely.” Would you believe I got another email about two more Abys who need homes?

Here’s their story: “My sister-in-law had been sick and recently passed away. I have been taking care of her two sibling Abyssinians (one male and one female) for approximately two months. I go to her condo to feed them, which is approximately a 20 minute ride twice a day. She had made arrangements for them to go to a friends’ home, but I learned that that was only going to be temporary, so I decided to not move them twice. My husband and I are planning to take them to a no-kill shelter during the first week of September. However, our preference would be to find them a good home. They are 9 years old. The male, Fritz, is very lovable but the female, Lily, is extremely skittish, more so because her routine has been quite disrupted.

(This is Fritz – Isn’t he handsome?)

My son is extremely allergic to cats so I cannot take them. I do want to keep them together.

(This is Lily. She looks like a total sweetie!)

Lily is the skittish cat and not very affectionate with me but she has probably been traumatized by the loss of my sister-in-law. I know Fritz would be easier to place alone but I need to honor Charlotte’s wishes and keep them together. They are, and have always been, indoor cats.

They are in Mystic, CT. They both have had their vaccinations as well as exams within the last few weeks. I took Fritz to the vet and had a mobile vet came to the condo yesterday for Lily. They are also both up to date with their rabies shots. Fritz is a little overweight but they are both healthy. I have all their papers, and I believe the name of the breeder is there as well (their breeder no longer breeds and will “beat the bushes” for them to be adopted). They were born in June, 2003.”

9 years old isn’t old! Tessie just turned 9 this month! If you would like two Connecticut Abys Leslie Acquaviva lsacqua@gmail.com

I Can Has Cheezburger – Return of the Cleocatra Shirt!

This doesn’t happen very often, but I Can Has Cheezburger is offering a reprint of one of my favourite T-shirts:

You may recall, I posted about this a year and a half ago, when it first came out. I love this shirt so much; it’s just so perfect for an Aby slave person.

Get the reprint of “Your Offering Pleases Me” for $15 including shipping now! They’re closing orders on September 3rd, and they may not bring it back again.

Abys in Need: Two females in Lansing, MI (Plus one)

I got this email last night from one of my Aby mailing lists:

“I own a feline blood bank. We obtain cats from various different situations, screen them for infectious diseases, isolate them and eventually use them as blood donors until we can find them a forever home. We received a call about a year ago regarding an Abyssinian cattery whose owner died. We took in four adults hoping at least one would be a type B. None were and only one, despite good nutrition, treatment for several GI parasites and good husbandry, is large enough to act as a donor. One has found a new home but we still have two
females we need to place. They are both very nervous and shy but do seek attention. We do not have much information on age but one is probably closer to 7 or 8, the other 3 to 4. They are not particularly attached to each other but, they both get along fine with other cats. We spayed both and they are current on vaccinations.”

There aren’t any photos of the two girls, and I don’t know what colour they are. But if you’re interested in giving one or both of them a forever home, contact Kathleen Edsall, DVM – Nine Lives Blood Services
Work Phone: 517-367-6050, Cellphone: 517-410-3350
Email: kathedsall@yahoo.com

Just after I posted this, I got another email about another Aby in Lansing:

Lansing, MI – Adult female Abyssinian. “Needs loving home. Adult female (small, only 6 lbs) Abyssinian. Rescued and ready for a forever home. Spayed and up to date on shots. Needs quiet home. Gets along with cats. Don’t know about dogs. Very nervous cat but seeks affection. Prefer home experienced with Abyssinians.”

There was a note on this: “Note: I don’t know whether this is one of the Abys from the bloodbank listing or not. She might be.” There also isn’t a photo on this Craigslist ad, and if you’re interested, email: mtgvj-3212365934@comm.craigslist.org.

Aby-a-Day – August 26: Cats can’t see shades of red

Currently, we have our dining room chairs lined up against a wall (the table they go with is in storage). On these chairs, we have a row of cat beds. There’s an old Siamese print bed that used to belong to Harri, there’s Kylie’s pretty pink princess bed, and there’s the leopard-print bed that’s large enough to hold all the cats, along with a blanket and a retired memory-foam bathmat.


It never fails to make me laugh when Jacoby chooses, of all the possible places we have for cats to sleep, the tiny pink princess bed. It’s nice to see a cat who isn’t afraid to embrace his feminine side.

Aby-a-Day – August 25: Angel of Mercy

Angel, too, has her own relationship with the vet’s office.


While she’s (still!) skittish at home much of the time, she tends to blossom in the vet’s exam room.


Maybe she feels safer in a small room with closed doors; she also tends to perk up when she’s closed up in the bedroom.


Tessie doesn’t even faze her.


I wonder if Angel’s experiences as a kitten with her eye and her URIs has given her a certain familiarity with vets’ offices that gives her an odd sense of confidence when she’s in one.


Whatever it is, she marches about like she owns the place.


It’s really fun to watch.


Angel is a really interesting little cat in general. I wish I knew more about her first year, but her records are sealed. I’d love to know what lines she’s from though.

Aby-a-Day – August 24: Get me a box of kittens, STAT! (Friday Flashback)

Jacoby’s most recent veterinary experience started me thinking about how close a relationship he has with our local vet. Of course, they are literally just up the street from where we live, so we’re neighbours, too. But Jake and the vet seem to have a special relationship that the other cats don’t really have.

jake 019

It might be because he and I went there for the first time on the third day after he came to live with us.


Even at the tender age of 3-1/2 months, Jake was fearless in the face of thermometers and needles.

He had a few memorable trips to see Dr. Natalie during his first year. Like the time he had Giardia (which, thankfully, there are no photos of). And we still talk about his neutering, when he woke up from the anaesthetic before 11:30 and promptly started shouting the place down demanding to be fed!


Yes, Jake definitely has a very special friendship with Dr. Natalie.


It was when he got his foot caught in the escalator at the Broadway T station, however, that Jake’s affair with the vet’s office really took off. When we came in that Saturday morning, Jake was so calm and so trusting he impressed the entire staff. He barely needed to be held down while his foot was cleaned and examined and his wound glued together and bandaged; he just sat quitely and let them fix him, never growling, hissing, or even flinching. He was amazing.


(This was also our first experience with the kitty painkillers. He’s had those little syringes so many times I’m starting to think he may be at risk of becoming addicted to prescription drugs!)


We had to go in several times following the initial emergency visit to have his wound checked and his dressing changed.


It was late October and chilly in Boston, so Jake also got to show off his wardrobe!




His foot healed well, and today the only reminder of the incident is a slightly thicker claw on one toe.


It was only five or six months later that Jacoby had his first urinary tract infection.


(This was highlighted with our first attempt at getting a feline urine sample.)


After all that, seeing the vet for his annual check-up and vaccinations was a cakewalk.


He tends to treat the waiting room as just another room he hangs out in, now.



He’s very comfortable and relaxed, unlike most cats in the vet’s office.


Heck, he’s more relaxed than I am when I go to see my doctor for my annual physical!


Interestingly, his calmness carries over to other veterinary hospitals. He’s just as happy in the waiting room at Angell Memorial, although he’s less familiar with it (thank goodness!). Of course, I’m sure his therapy training has something to do with his medical familiarity.


I also tend to bring him along even when he doesn’t need anything done, as moral support for the cat who is being seen by the doctor. It also reinforces that the vet isn’t a “bad” place. It’s just a place we go and it might smell funny, but it’s no big deal.



He sometimes calms the other cats during a vet visit all on his own. It’s really sweet to watch him do this.


Despite all he’s been through, Jake still really loves going to the vet.


So much so, he even has his own set of scrubs! Maybe someday he can become a veterinary office cat, and welcome the kitties who come in to see the doctor. Come to think of it, we could even start calling him “JD”…

Aby-a-Day – August 23: Take two syringes and call me in the morning

As you saw in yesterday’s post, Jacoby had his first X-ray taken this week. The reason? The urine sample I took in on Monday came back showing a lot of bacteria and a high white blood cell count, indicating a serious urinary tract infection. Dr. Natalie was concerned that he might have bladder stones, so I took him in to get an X-ray so we could see if he did.


The good news was, there were no stones in Jake’s bladder. But he still has a UTI, and we changed his medication from Clavamox to Baytril.


Jake was also prescribed some painkillers, since UTIs can be very painful. He’s taken these before, after his neuter, when he had his escalator accident, and when he had his other UTIs. However, I don’t remember the meds making him quite so loopy before.


He’s actually been really cute: the meds seem to make him very happy, and he purrs a lot. He also tries to headbutt me when I’m nowhere near him, and he ends up doing this sort of bob-and-weave manoeuvre.


Still, it’s good to know the meds are doing their job…he’s not in too much pain from his UTI judging by his actions!

Aby-a-Day – August 22: Wordless Wednesday (It’s what’s inside that counts)


Aby-a-Day – August 21: I’m gonna eat you, little fishy (Cartoon Tuesday)

Lately Jacoby has taken to going under the sofa* every chance he gets. I was telling my husband about it one morning when I couldn’t find Jake, so I shook his jar of dry food. He popped out from under the sofa, ate a piece of kibble, and then went straight back under again. “What is he doing down there?” my husband asked.


I think it’s probably something like this. I could totally see Jake as The Cat on Red Dwarf

(Click cartoon to embiggen, or you can view all cartoons in Slideshow mode on Flickr.)

*Although, I suppose since he’s Canadian, I should really call it a chesterfield, eh?

Aby-a-Day – August 20: City girl (Hipstamatic Monday)

The cats got a Cats Attack scratching post for Christmas last year.


I think it’s more of a hit with the humans than with the cats. I don’t think our lot care for corrugated cardboard as a scratching surface.


They do like to lie on the base of this post, though.


Which works out great for me, because it makes for a photogenic backdrop.

Aby-a-Day – August 19: “Oh what a thing to have done, and it was all yellow.”

Poor Jacoby had another minor UTI flare-up last week.


He’s fine, and we went to the vet and he’s got his usual medications to calm the spasms and kill the bacteria and everything’s fine, but since it’s been a while, the vet wanted to recheck his urine and sent us home with a little cup of plasti-litter to collect a sample.


Oh, goody. Because it was so much fun getting a sample the first time.

I was in the bathroom, studying the little plastic cup and trying to figure out a better way to get the sample when Jake sauntered in, heading for the litter box. I got a crazy idea and just stuck the cup in there under him while he was peeing.


And it worked! I couldn’t believe it. Only Jake. I swear, I have the only cat who will actually pee in a cup.

Aby-a-Day – August 18: Abys are clean and colourful cats

I never stop being amused by the way cats go through fads regarding napping spots and hiding places. One particular spot can be ignored for months and then, suddenly and for no apparent reason, it will become the hottest thing in the house.


Jacoby is a textbook example of the faddist cat. It’s funny to see him decide to revisit an old favourite or decide it’s time for a new one. He’s just inaugurated a new place: the coloured side of our laundry basket.


I haven’t ever seen him go in there before this week. Now he’s doing it every night.


It’s a pretty deep laundry bag, and it’s not easy to get in and out of, and let’s face it: it’s dirty laundry. It can’t be that nice a place to hang out.


Still, you have to give Jake credit: he only goes in the coloured laundry side, not the white side. I guess he’s leaving that open for Kylie.

Aby-a-Day – August 17: Stray Cat Strut (Friday Flashback)

I needed to call our vet today to get some prescriptions refilled, and was put on hold for a moment, where, to my delight, I heard their new hold music: Stray Cat Strut! Hoo boy, does that song bring back memories! Not only from high school, but also from the swing dancing revival of the late 90’s.

While I was listening to (and singing along with) the song, it occurred to me that I could find photos of Jacoby (who could be considered to be black and orange) to fit the lyrics…

Oooh, Oooh, Oooh, Oooh,
Black and orange stray cat sittin’ on a fence


Ain’t got enough dough to pay the rent
I’m flat broke but I don’t care


I strut right by with my tail in the air


Stray cat strut, I’m a ladies’ cat,


A feline Casanova, hey man, thats where its at
Get a shoe thrown at me from a mean old man


Get my dinner from a garbage can

Yeah don’t cross my path


I don’t bother chasing mice around
I slink down the alley looking for a fight
Howling to the moonlight on a hot summer night


Singin’ the blues while the lady cats cry,
“Wild stray cat, you’re a real gone guy.”


I wish I could be as carefree and wild,
but I got cat class and I got cat style.


I don’t bother chasing mice around
I slink down the alley looking for a fight


Howling to the moonlight on a hot summer night
Singin’ the blues while the lady cats cry,
“Wild stray cat, you’re a real gone guy.”

I wish I could be as carefree and wild,


but I got cat class and I got cat style.

That song’s always kind of bugged me though. It starts out with “black and orange stray cat” which is obviously a tortoiseshell cat, but the subject is obviously described in the lyrics as a male cat. Even in high school…

Aby-a-Day – August 16: The mancave

Jacoby has a SturdiShelter that we take to cat shows. We also keep it set up at home for him; it’s where he’s fed twice a day and it’s his personal fort. We call it his “mancave.”

mansfield-jakemancaveC03134 2

And this is why we call it that. The only problem is, he’s so comfortable in there he never wants to come out!