Aby-a-Day – 10 Juni: Another trip to Min Veterinär (Thursday Things)

If you are a regular follower, you know the story behind Angel’s eye. You may also remember we took Angel to Angell Hospital to see an Dr. Biros, an opthalmology specialist.

Back then she was diagnosed with open chronic inactive keratitis with corneal scarring, a result of her early Feline Herpesvirus that took her left eye as a kitten.

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So, this morning Angel and I took the long bus ride to Min Veterinär.

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“Wait, what? I was just here yesterday!”

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She waited in her carrier for the doctor and her assistant to come in.

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First they put some drops in her eye to dilate her pupil.

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Then the lights were dimmed.

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And the doctor shone a light into Angel’s eye to examine the cornea.

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Then we decided to check her blood to see if there was anything systemic going on.

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First, of course, we had to shave her leg.

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Tomorrow is her 14th birthday, and I don’t think she’s ever had her blood tested. Even without any eye problems, it’s a good idea to see if there’s anything else we need to worry about.

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And then we were done.

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She was a very good patient.

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Then, we had to wait for the bus back home.

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We had just missed one bus, so we had a 14 minute wait for the next one. I let Angel out to get some air.

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She was good, and went back into her carrier when she was finished exploring (not that there’s much to explore at that bus stop).

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When we got off the bus at home, I let her out again. She walked part of the way…

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…and rode part of the way.

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After two trips to the vet in two days, we were both happy to get home.

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Apparently, her previous open chronic inactive keratitis has been activated. The doctor prescribed Dexmethasone drops, so hopefully that will deactivate her keratitis.

Aby-a-Day – 3 Juni: How I spent my birthday (Thursday Things)

Björn asked me what I wanted to do for my birthday. I said, “go to the second-hand store and to eat at Max (Sweden’s best burgers)“. And so we did.

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Björn gave me a Schleich Bengal (I collect Schleich cats)…

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…a paint-by-numbers kit and some vintage cat books.

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At the second-hand store I scored a beautiful Egyptian cat statue (which Lorelai was quite taken with)…

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…and a Rosa Ljung ceramic cat.

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But the BEST thing we found was when we checked out a new pet store in town, Dogman. There I found FREEZE-DRIED Vaisto cat food (I have been wanting to give Angel freeze-dried instead of raw, but couldn’t find it in Sweden), some dried chicken treats, and an interesting duck “cat sausage” that I am hoping Izaak will eat, because it will be easier to travel with that than with frozen raw food.

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AND we found 1kg bags of frozen chicken necks! We had been buying Vaisto Mush necks in 800g bags, but they’ve been in short supply lately, and these are much better (and cheaper). Zak, as you know, LOVES his necks! All in all, not a bad birthday.

Aby-a-Day – 27 Maj: In case you were wondering about Dashiell outstide…(Thursday Things)

As you may remember, Dashiell isn’t as confident about being outside.

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But he does seem more comfortable when he’s with the other cats.

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So when Alfred started to run down the hill, Dash kind of followed him.

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I mean, okay…Dash walked down the hill, he didn’t run.

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But the fact that he went on the hill at all is a huge step for him!

Aby-a-Day – 21 Maj: More of Izaak running (Thursday Things)

I absolutely love watching Izaak run.

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It’s so different from the way the Abys run.

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It’s bouncier, somehow.

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I’ve also noticed he has a tendency to curl up his tail as he runs, while the Abys’ tails are either straight up or straight out.

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Zak’s got a swagger to his stride that the Abys just don’t have. They’re more about the speed.

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And then Zak slows down to a businesslike trot.

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He’s clearly a cat on a mission.

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Earplane 1Z44K is taxiing down the runway after another successful flight.

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After the successful landing, he is met by his faithful groundcrew.

Aby-a-Day – 13 Maj: Watch the Birdie! (Thursday Things)

Yesterday, I showed you our new neighbours, Randall and Beth, a pair of European Pied Flycatchers. They are very interesting little birds. And not only have we never seen them in our område before now, but we have had that little birdhouse up for three years and no bird has ever shown any interest in it until now.

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But Beth and Randall have moved right in.

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They appeared on Tuesday, so we named them after the characters on This is Us.

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They rarely, if ever, land on the ground, so they are fairly safe from cats. But that didn’t stop Randall from doin’ a heckin’ concern when we went outside with the cats this afternoon.

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The cats, however, were mostly oblivious to the bird couple above.

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Mostly.

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Izaak noticed their movement at some point whilst we were outside.

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He watched them flying around for a bit.

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But I think he knew there was no chance. We will have to be careful when we take them out after the fledglings emerge.

Aby-a-Day – 6 Maj: Cat Scanner app (Thursday Things)

Yesterday in one of my Facebook cat groups, someone posted about an app, Cat Scanner, that claims to identify what breed your cat is from a photograph. So of course I had to try it out.

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It worked great with the Abyssinians.

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It even identified Angel correctly.

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And it got Markis pretty well, too.

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I was disappointed with how it did with Tessie. I was expecting perhaps a Burmilla…but I guess at least it could tell she’s a tortie?

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And then…there was Izaak. Complete and utter fail. I was expecting a Singapura to be a fairly easy ID…at worst, maybe a Burmese or Aby…but a Bengal!? Seriously? Well, you know I clicked that “Am I right?” link to tell them they weren’t. And the explanation was…the app only really works with FIFe-recognised breeds.

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Um….what!? Singas have been recognised in FIFe since 2014…SEVEN YEARS!

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Which, naturally, I felt the need to tell them. Haven’t gotten a response yet, but I can’t wait to see what they say.

Aby-a-Day – 8 April: Siberian Tigers at Borås Djurparken (Thursday Things)

This is the last installment of the series about the big cats at Borås Djurparken. This week, it’s the Tigers’ turn.

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Unfortunately, unlike the other cats, the Tigers were…underwhelming.

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But at least we got to see them at all. We did not get to see the African Wild Dogs or the Wolves at all that day.

Aby-a-Day – 1 April: Adult Cheetahs at Borås Djurparken (Thursday Things)

Continuing >the series about the big cats at Borås Djurparken. Last week, I focused on the Cheetah kittens, and this week we’ll look at the adult Cheetahsthey have at the park.

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I don’t remember how many adults there were in the enclosure; I think there were two adults to the several kittens. I think it may have been two mothers with their combined litters.

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Interestingly, the adult Cheetahs didn’t really interact with the kittens all that much.

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They just walked on past the kittens, staying in their own bubble.

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I love this shot. You can see the muscles in the hind legs; they are like coiled springs. The power of the Cheetahs' speed is obvious.

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The park also had an informational Cheetah display with information on wild Cheetahs’ territories and life styles.

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There was also an articulated Cheetah skeleton. You can really see how big their carnassials compared to the rest of the skull.

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Cheetahs are the only cats whose claws don’t retract. But look how heavy and thick their claws are – they give them excellent traction when they’re chasing down prey.

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Still, as interesting as the insides are, looking at the outsides of the Cheetahs is a lot better.

Aby-a-Day – 25 Mars: Cheetah kittens at Borås Djurparken (Thursday Things)

Continuing the series about the big cats at Borås Djurparken (which, admittedly, I totally forgot about last week). This week, I have a little more about the Cheetah kittens they have at the park.

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It was a little hard to tell how many kittens (I refuse to call baby cats “cubs”) there were; I think there were four or five.

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I’m also not sure how old they were.

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Compared to the mother Cheetah, I would say they were a few months old.

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They were wicked cute, though.

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Most of them were lounging out in the open. Look at this guy, just chilling.

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One interesting thing I did not know about Cheetah kittens is that when they speak…they chirp like little birds!

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I love Cheetah kittens, with their fluffy fur.

Aby-a-Day – 18 Mars: Lorelai in a box (Thursday Things)

Last weekend, we had a little box of various cheeses. The box was pretty nice for putting little things in, so we put it on the kitchen table.

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And sure enough, a little thing ended up in the box.

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Lorelai loves to chew on her claws.

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I think that’s why she hates it when I clip them for her.

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“I can do my OWN nails, Mom!”

Aby-a-Day – 11 Mars: More about the Borås Lions (Thursday Things)

Continuing last week’s post about the Lions, I’m sharing more of the big cat photos I took at Borås Djurparken. This week, I have a little more about the Lionesses and Lions at the park.

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The Lions have a house they can shelter in.

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The Lion and a couple of Lionesses wandered over to the house and jumped in.

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…And then this happened.

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Afterwards, they just all hung out like it was just business as usual.

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And then, several minutes later…

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…He did it again!

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I’m not even sure if that’s the same Lioness.

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Although, I gotta say, those two creepers watching are…interesting.

Aby-a-Day – 4 Mars: Lions at the Borås Djurpark (Thursday Things)

Continuing last week’s post about the Lionesses, I’m sharing more of the big cat photos I took at Borås Djurparken. This week it’s the Lion.

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Isn’t he handsome?

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I’ve always been fascinated with Lions’ manes. No other male cats have them; I mean, sure, tomcats have jowls and other cats have heavier neck fur, but no other cats have the manes Lions do.

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Have you ever wondered why that is?

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Since Lions are the only cats that live in large groups, they are also the cats that fight each other the most often. The Lions’ manes evolved to protect their throats, so when the males fight, it’s not as easy for them to land a fatal bite on each other. Also, the size and colour of the mane conveys strength to rivals and health and virility to the females.

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Although this guy doesn’t look like much of a fighter. He looks more like Izaak when he’s snuggled up sleeping next to Dashiell or Alfred.

Aby-a-Day – 25 Februari: Lionesses at the Borås Djurpark (Thursday Things)

Continuing last week’s post I’m sharing more of the big cat photos I took at Borås Djurparken. This week I’m sharing one of the most Aby-looking cats: the Lionesses.

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See? Just like Abys.

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This is about a ton of cuddle puddle.

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Always room for one more!

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I love the one using her sister as a pillow in the back.

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Finally, one girl decides she wants to go on walkabout.

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They even walk like big Abys.

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I just love watching them…I took a lot more photos of them than would really fit into one post. In fact, I’ll be posting the boys next week.

Aby-a-Day – 18 Februari: Eurasian Lynx at the Borås Djurpark (Thursday Things)

Back in 2019, we went to the Borås Djurpark. They have a marvellous collection of big cats, and I took a ton of photos. And…I am just now getting through them all. I’ll share them on Thursdays for the next few weeks. They have Lions, Tigers, and Cheetahs, but I am going to start out with the one cat native to Sweden: the Eurasian Lynx

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We were extremely lucky to have gotten to the Lynx area just as they were being fed. The zoo is very much about enrichment of the animals’ lives, so feeding the Lynxes involves hoisting a hunk of meat ten feet up a tree so the Lynx can climb up and get it.

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This Lynx leapt up the tree so quickly, even my fast camera couldn’t capture him in midair! These two photos are sequential, that’s how fast they are.

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It was interesting to watch the Lynx work out how to get the food.

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Honestly, it was very reminiscent of the cats approaching their daily chicken necks. Even though they know what it is, they spend some time sniffing it before actually taking a bite.

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Then a little lick and nibble…

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…and then, the grab.

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GOT IT!

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I wish you could see the meat in his mouth…typical cat, head turned the wrong way.

Aby-a-Day – 11 Februari: King Kong (Thursday Things)

A few months ago, Dashiell started over grooming himself. We think Lorelai being in heat may be stressing him out on some level, although their interactions are fairly normal and they play chasing games along with Izaak and Alfred every day.

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He started in on his belly. I tried giving him Amitriptyline (which I had on hand for Angel in case she has urinary issues), but the process of catching him and getting the pill down his throat once a day seemed to only cause him more stress, which seemed to defeat the purpose. Same with spraying his belly with Bitter Apple, plus I ended up getting the stuff on me, too (FWIW, it really does taste vile).

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I also tried the ThunderShirt, but he just over groomed parts of his body the shirt didn’t cover, like his arms.

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After careful observation, I determined his over grooming wasn’t likely caused by internal belly pain (when Tessie over groomed her belly, it turned out she was constipated and she was trying to make it feel better), especially after he started in on his arms. Out of ideas, I asked on my new Facebook Aby/Somali group, and several people suggested I try Zylkene, which is given as a powder in food. Dash’s licking lessened after a week or so, but it didn’t stop completely.

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Zylkene takes a few months to really take effect, according to other Aby owners who have used it, so I added the cone of shame, which he tolerates quite well. He isn’t able to reach the places he was over grooming, but he can wash the bits he needs to. I put his cone on upside-down, like a cape; Dr. Natalie at South Boston Animal Hospital suggested that for Tessie, so the cone would bother her less and to avoid whisker fatigue. He’s been wearing the cone for a few days now, and I think we’re finally getting some results!

Aby-a-Day – 4 Februari: Happy 4th Birthday, Alfred! (Thursday Things)

Today is Alfred’s fourth birthday! I can’t believe he’s four already. He was very excited about his “cake,” too.

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The candles, however, gave him pause.

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For about fifteen seconds.

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Freddy seemed about ready to eat his cake despite the flames, so I blew them out.

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Then he really tucked in. At least this year, no candles were eaten on Freddy’s birthday.

Aby-a-Day – 28 Januari: Izaak’s birthday present (Thursday Things)

Izaak turned three years old on Tuesday, and I got him a little black chirpy bird made by the same company that made the favourite, beloved chirpy mouse he got for his first birthday.

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He knew what it was immediately and wanted to play with it immediately, even before we pulled out the little plastic battery thingy.

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And once it started making noises…look out!

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Usually, Zak prefers light-coloured toys, but he really liked this little black woodpecker.

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It picked it up and carried it off. He loves to carry his mousies and birdies.

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Happy third birthday, little man!

Aby-a-Day – 21 Januari: Junie-Purr, Bugsie…and StarClan (Thursday Things)

After a day of joy…a day of sadness.

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Dashiell’s sister, Junie-Purr, had a singleton kitten five weeks ago. She was very sick with pneumonia during her pregnancy and needed emergency antibiotics. Then, suddenly, last Friday, Meg found Junie dead in her bed cuddling her kitten. She isn’t sure what caused it, as Junie seemed to be doing better, but she has sent Junie’s body to Tufts Veterinary for a necropsy to find out what happened.

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Yesterday, Bugsie, Dash’s little niece, started refusing to eat.

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Meg cuddled her and kept her warm and tried to get her to eat whilst watching the Inauguration.

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Later in the evening, little Bugsie seemed to be perking up a little. She cuddled Meg and they watched the Inauguration Celebration together. Then they went to bed.

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Unfortunately, this morning, little Bugsie was gone. She just wasn’t strong enough. Meg’s vet says it is likely she was damaged from the strong antibiotics the ER vets had to use to save her mother. Her little gut was not able to handle solid food, and her little bones were soft.

My heart has joined the Thousand, for my friend has stopped running today. Sleep well in Tuonela, dear, sweet Junie, with your beloved kitten Bugsie.

Aby-a-Day – 14 Januari: More snow, more fun (Thursday Things)

Since I posted last week, we’ve had a bit more snow here. I took the cats outside again on Tuesday; it was actually rather warm and the snow was perfect and not too wet or icy.

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Lorelai, of course, went pelting off into the whiteness.

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The boys, however, were less enthusiastic (and yes, I made Dashiell come out with us).

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Eventually, Alfred stretched his legs.

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Dash even took a little walk around the building.

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Izaak…was displeased.

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Rory, on the other hand, was playing with the snow.

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She was having so much fun out there.

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One cool thing happened, though. Watching Rory run, I saw some movement in the background. At first I thought it was Freddy, but it was a hare! I wish one of the cats had seen it, though. I’d love to see what their reaction would be!

Aby-a-Day – 7 Januari: Snow day! (Thursday Things)

So, as you saw yesterday, we finally got a little bit of snow.

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Alfred, along with Lorelai and Izaak (who haven’t been outside in forever) were eager to get out, even if there was snow on the ground.

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Rory, of course, burst out the door. She never seems to feel the cold at all.

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Zak was happy to be outside, but he wasn’t happy about the cold. He mostly stuck close to the building.

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You can see the difference in their happiness about being out.

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Freddy immediately went around back to check out his bush. There wasn’t much to check out.

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At one point, Rory couldn’t hold it in anymore, and she burst off in her signature flying joyful bound.

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Look at her go! It doesn’t matter if it’s cold and snow-covered or the hottest day of summer…she loves to run outside.

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Eventually, she came trotting back to the shelter of the building.

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“Well? Was it fun?”

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Freddy also took off in his goofy gallop, and Zak followed behind him.

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We didn’t stay outside for very long, because it was breezy and felt colder than the -2°C that it actually was.

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Markis was also outside enjoying the snow.

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As were the neighbourhood children. Despite there being barely enough snow to cover the grass, they were all out there sliding down our hill.