Aby-a-Day – March 31: Easter egg hunt

For Easter. I found some plastic eggs for the cats to play with.


They’re actually pretty cool plastic eggs. Besides being leopard print, the pieces are attached and there are holes in them.


Those holes mean that if you put dry cat food inside the eggs, the cats can smell it.


The smell of food + wobbly rolling + enticing rattle = super fun play times for kitties.


Jacoby and Tessie were all over that action.


Jake did get a little frustrated when he couldn’t break them open right away, though.


Angel got some eggs, too.


Guess how long it took her to figure out that pushing the eggs off the cat tree opens them up pretty quickly?

Aby-a-Day – March 30: “Wind” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

This week’s Photo Hunt subject is “Wind.” But do they mean “Wind,” as in the movement of air, or do they mean “Wind,” as in to wind a watch? That’s the fun of the English language, I guess.



I got this little wind-up tiger from a street vendor in Chinatown for $3.



It’s supposed to do little somersaults, but it never manages to land on its feet after a hop.


It just lands on its side and twitches.


I guess that’s still fun to play with, though.

Aby-a-Day – March 29: Traveling in style (Fashion Friday)

To get to the show in Stamford, Jacoby and I took the Commuter Rail from South Station to Attleboro, and then caught a ride with Meg to Connecticut.


Jake really hates to travel enclosed in his bag. He’s an awesome traveler as long as he can see everything around him. That’s one reason he loves his stroller so much.


It was a chilly day, so Jake wore his Hug-a-Dog harness coat.


We were on a super-crowded train and weren’t even able to sit down, but as soon as I could I let Jake out of his bag. He just climbed up on top of our rolling duffle and sat there very nicely.


It was so crowded on the train he really couldn’t see much more than he could have seen inside his bag, but he was much happier to be out regardless.


However, as soon as a seat opened up, Jake was happy to move. I guess even those hard slick train seats are more comfortable than sitting on a duffle bag!

Aby-a-Day – March 28: Pole Dancing

When you go to a cat show, you’ll notice that each judging table has a scratching post on it. This is so the cats with stretch up and have a scratch so the judges can see the cats’ musculature and see their bodies move in order to better assess their conformation to the breed standard.


Most cats – and especially most Abyssinians – love to show off and scratch the post. This is Ataraxia Coatue – a relative of Cousin Toki!


Some Abys, like Cousin Taz’s nephew, Instincts Fire, take scratching the post to a whole new level.



Most cats just scratch the post. They don’t usually try to climb it.


Jacoby, however, never “pole dances.” He’d rather stand on the judge’s table and survey the audience.


Which is why, on Saturday in Gene Darrah’s ring, it was so funny to see Jake go up the scratching post like a regular Aby! Meg and I couldn’t believe it.


Apparently, neither could Jake. Look at his face! He seems to be saying, “What am I doing? I never do this!”


Evidently, Taz has picked up some bad habits from his cousin Jake.


As hard as Gene Darrah tried, Taz would NOT scratch the post.


But he did pose nicely. I think maybe they’re spending too much time together!

Aby-a-Day – March 27: Wordless Wednesday (“The perfect show Aby should feel like a cobra poised to strike”)


Aby-a-Day – March 26: “You see, kidneys don’t wear watches. Sure, gallbladders do, but it doesn’t matter, ’cause kidneys can’t tell time” (Cartoon Tuesday)

All that time Jacoby’s been spending in the hospital has gone to his head…


Background photo by mtsofan on Flickr; adapted under Creative Commons license.

Aby-a-Day – March 25: Ripping it up in Rippowam (Hipstamatic Monday)

A few photos of Jacoby at the show this past weekend. The show was held in the Sheraton Stamford Hotel, which has a lot of windows and natural light.


This panorama shot gives you a feel for how nice the show space was. The benching cages were in a ballroom off to one side (actually directly beneath where I was standing when I took this), so the benching area and the rings were more separated than they usually are. It was nice. And since it was so open, you could go up to the restaurant, the front desk, and other places in the lobby and still be able to hear the cats’ numbers being called.



It made for some very nice photographs.



The ceilings were very high – about two stories – and the top part of the space was all windows. It was almost like being outside. It really showed Jake’s colour off well.


The cages in the judging rings were drenched in sunbeams, which a lot of the cats seemed to really enjoy.



Jake included, of course.


Of course, the sunshine was so nice that it was a bit difficult getting the cats out of the cages to be judged! They just wanted to stay in those lovely sunpuddles.


Judge Rachel Anger told Jake and the audience a story about Ancient Egypt.



She said he looked like he should be on a barge in the Nile with Cleopatra and Marc Anthony.



Jake, of course, gave her his best Egyptian poses.


I think he rather liked the idea of being fanned by servants with palm fronds while floating along on a barge…


The fun thing about Hipstamatic is the randomness of the photos you get. And, I think Hipstamatic has a bit of a sense of humour, too…

Strollercat strikes again on the Red Line

So on the red line train from Quincy Adams, I let Jake out of his carrier for the ride. He sat on top of my rolling duffle looking out the window up til Andrew, where I put him back in the bag since I didn’t think it was safe to let him ride across the street on the duffle.


I was in the first car, as that’s where the elevator is, and as I’m getting off the train at Broadway, the driver has his head out the window, checking the doors and all, and he says to me, “Where’s the cat?” I guess he’d seen him through the window between stops.
I held up Jake’s bag and said, “Oh, he’s in here. It’s safer for crossing the street.”
“I was watching him, he’s a cool cat,” the driver said.
“You know this is Strollercat?” I asked.
He did a sort of double take and said, “He’s the one that was in the paper! I THOUGHT he looked familiar!”
“Yep…you had a celebrity in your train tonight!”
“I did! That’s awesome!”

And then I got on the elevator and he went on to South Station, but it made my night more than it already was.

Aby-a-Day – March 24: Jake’s the best and he has a rosette to prove it!

Jacoby and I spent this weekend in Stamford, CT at the Cats Incredible CFA show.


He’s the #10 Aby in Premiership in the country right now, and he needed some points to solidify his position.


I was really interested to have him judged by Lois Jensen again; you may recall that it was in her ring that Jake earned his last nine points to become a Grand Premier.


And she did use him in her final. And as she walked from cat to cat, awarding her rosettes in order from tenth place to first, it got more and more exciting. And then:

She not only finalled him, but she gave him Best Cat in Premiership!


Best. Cat show. Ever!

Aby-a-Day – March 23: “Flow” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

This week’s Photo Hunt subject is “Flow.”


We have a Pioneer Pet Stainless Steel Teardrop Fountain, so fresh water is always flowing at our house.


We have a still water fountain in the bedroom, but the moving water seems to be much more popular. We have it away from the eating areas since cats prefer not to drink where they eat.


Which makes sense; how often do you see a lion eat her kill next to the watering hole?


The cool thing about this fountain is cats have a choice of which water they can drink. A cat can either drink the running water that pours down the chute…


…or they can drink the still water from the reservoir.

Aby-a-Day – March 22: You’re soaking in it (Friday Flashback)

Jacoby has always been a great help in the kitchen.


Even from a very young age, he was always right there, ready to lend a helping paw whether it was needed or not.


Here he is helping with the dishes.


Not sure what I would have done without his assistance!


Funny thing is…he still does this, almost four years later.


I guess it’s true what they say: Dishes are never done!

Aby-a-Day – March 21: He rocks in the treetops all the day long

During a break at the Sturbridge cat show (aka the Blizzard show), I took Jacoby out for a little walk.


In the hallway we discovered the most wonderful thing…a cat tree display!


These were very tall trees – taller than I am, so I’d have to estimate them at around 8′ tall.


Jake loved them. I think he was disappointed we didn’t bring one home. One of these trees might fit in our apartment…maybe…but it would never fit in our car!


And I don’t think Jake would be happy with just one, either…

Aby-a-Day – March 20: Wordless Wednesday (Homing instinct)









Aby-a-Day – March 19: Luck of the Irish (Cartoon Tuesday)

I know St. Patrick’s day was two days ago, but I couldn’t resist.


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

Aby-a-Day – March 18: Second-class accomodations (Hipstamatic Monday)

I don’t always take Jacoby’s stroller when we go out.


Sometimes, when we’re not going to be out long or we’re in a hurry, he’ll travel in his Sturdi Incognito carrier.


It’s a comfortable carrier and he doesn’t mind it much as long as it isn’t closed up.


The problem is, while it’s very well-made, it’s not all that stable.


If Jake shifts his weight, he rolls the whole thing over onto its side.


Apart from that, it’s a great bag. There’s a lot to be said for cat carriers with pockets that hold 8½x11″ paper.


I have to be really careful about setting his carrier down on a table or other raised surface, because he could topple off onto the floor!


And it will be awesome to take on a flight; when it’s all closed up it looks like a regular bag, not a pet carrier.


If only it would just stay upright!

Aby-a-Day – March 17: Just a little neighbourhood parade

It doesn’t happen very often, but Boston’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade was actually held on St. Patrick’s day! And since we live at pretty much ground zero for the parade, we had to go join the party.


It was kind of chilly – and really windy – so we didn’t stay out long.


Just long enough to meet some people and spread a little St. Patrick’s Day cheer.


Jacoby’s always so popular when we go out.




This couple in particular really fell in love with him. I didn’t get their names, but they were happy to hold Jake for some photos. He was a little cold, so the woman cuddled him to warm him up.


Good times, grass skirts and all!

Aby-a-Day – March 16: “Footprints” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

This week’s Photo Hunt subject is “Footprints.”







I found these in Gillette‘s parking lot. I’m sure that they were left by one of the welder’s cats.

New Gooby Comfort Harness

People always ask me to recommend good cat harnesses. Jacoby has a lot of different harnesses for different situations, but one of my absolute favourite brands is Gooby. They make some great harnesses (Like the Gooby New Freedom Harness that Angel is wearing in this photo), and now they’ve come out with a new design!


The Gooby Comfort Harness is described on their website as a “comfortable X design [with a] wider opening for neck to eliminate choking. No-choke comfort harness. Most pressure goes to the chest.” It;s basically a vest-type harness with less vest, so it’s almost all straps.

I think it looks like it would be amazing on cats! I’d buy one to try it out on Jake, but he has so many already…

If you’d like to try one out, you can purchase them from Golly Gear, BaxterBoo, or the omnipotent Amazon.

Aby-a-Day – March 15: It’s not easy being green (Fashion Friday)

Here in Boston, St. Patrick’s Day is kind of a big deal.


But Jacoby is ready for it.


He’s got his clover lei and his flashing LED shamrock necklace…


…and his St. Patty’s sun-hat…


Well. I found it on Etsy, and I thought it was cute…


…but the brim is a little too much. It’s more like blinders! And if there’s anything an Aby hates it’s not being able to see everything.


But the hat does have some uses.



It makes a great cat toy!

Abys in Need: Louis in Greensboro, NC – Back with his Breeder!

This super-sad story came through the Adopt-an-Aby email list this evening:

I have an Abyssinian Male, 9 yrs old, very typical Aby, vocal, loving, great with kids that I need to find a new home for. We are located in Greensboro, NC. If anyone is interested in giving him a stable forever home, please contact me. Vet reference required.

I just had my first child, am a single mom, and staying with a family member. I have had Louis since he was 6months old.
He is very unhappy! My brother is making me keep him in a semi-heated (barely warmer than outside) sunroom. He has dogs in there as well. One of the dogs is large Border Collie, male, unfixed, he has shown aggression toward Louis, and I am fearful for his safety. It is a very bad situation. I wish I could afford to get my own place again but I will probably be here for at least the next year or so. I need to find Louis a loving home where he can be cared for better than I can right now. This breaks my heart. I am very desperate at this point and need to find something ASAP.

Poor Louis! I don’t like the sounds of that dog, or that sunroom…Abys hate to be cold! There’s not a photo of him right now, but if I get one I’ll pass it along.

If you can help this poor guy, contact Jessica Cecil by email, or phone her at 336-255-0012 or 404-422-7688.

EDIT: Good news! Our friend Selina, who also lives in NC, told me:

I just spoke with Jessica and Louis has been taken back by his breeder!!! She told me that someone had reminded her that she did have a breeder contract & it probably said that the breeder would take the Aby back. So apparently he is back with his original breeder (who she located on Facebook – and who told her that, last night, Louis slept with her daughter!)

So he’s out of the sunroom, away from the dog, and living the good life with his breeder. Hurrah!