Aby-a-Day – 18 May: Splish splash, I was taking a bath (Fashion Friday)

One of the first things I do when bringing home a new kitten is to give them a bath. I know that may sound strange and a little non-intuitive, but it was actually something Sherry did when she brought us Jacoby (and which I wish I had taken photos of). She said it ensures that the new kitten doesn’t introduce anything to the resident cats from the cattery, it reduces the kitten’s “different” smell, and it distracts the kitten from being homesick at all. Ever since Jake, I have done that to every new kitten we’ve gotten, and it seems to work like a charm.

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So I introduced Lorelai to the cats and apartment, clipped her claws and popped her into the laundry room sink. I hadn’t gotten any Jerob Parisian Purple shampoo yet, so I had to make do with their Snowy Blue, which I use on Alfred and used on Logan. I certainly wasn’t going to wash her with Jake and Angel’s Mahogany Gold!

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First, I got her completely wet.

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Then I turn the water off and lather her up. Jerob shampoos should be diluted, and I usually add some of the De-greasing shampoo as well, to clean up the oils from hands petting their fur.

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Never put soap on a cat’s face though. I don’t lather beyond the ears.

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(Pause while all of you go Awwwwwwwww…)

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After she’s good and clean, it’s time for the rinse cycle.

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It is essential to make sure your cat’s fur is completely free of shampoo, or the fur will be dull and sticky.

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When you’re sure you’ve gotten out every last bit of soap, rinse one more time.

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After we’re all rinsed, it’s time to dry off.

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I use microfibre pet towels, and they really do suck up a lot of water.

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Finally, a little playtime with big brother Freddy…and the bath is forgotten.

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“Bath? What bath?”

Aby-a-Day – 13 May: Lorelai’s mother Kajza (Happy Aby Holidays)

While Sweden won’t celebrate Mother’s Day for another two weeks, today is Mother’s Day in North America, and since that’s where my mom is, today’s the day I think of.

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But my mom isn’t an Abyssinian (or a Singapura), so here is Lorelai’s mother, S*Primuz-Zezam Kajza.

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She is a very lovely blue Aby.

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Her half-sister (Rory’s aunt) was entered in the show, but Kajza was in the motorhome with Rory and her sister, Maya.

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Kajza was there to say goodbye to her two daughters.

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They were too busy playing to pay much attention to Mom, though.

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I wonder if Kajza misses her girls. I would say that Rory misses her mom…

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but, you know…she really doesn’t seem to miss her old life at all! She assimilated so quickly it’s like once she got into the carrier, she never looked back.

Aby-a-Day – 11 May: Remembering Gun-Hee (Friday Flashback)

Lorelai has been with us for a week now, and it’s like she’s always been here. She’s feisty, trusting, playful, curious and just…perfect. Jacoby growls at her, she doesn’t care. She pushes Angel and Jake away from their leftovers if she’s still hungry. She holds her own with Alfred even though he’s nearly 10 times her size. She’s had no litter box issues, no eating problems…nothing. She just integrated herself right into the cat family.

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Kind of like another Aby kitten I know. Gun-Hee was a lot like Rory. Jake, Freddy and Logan were somehow not as easy. They all had giardia as kittens, and, I don’t know. It just felt like it took a lot more work managing those three as kittens compared to Rory and Gun-Hee.

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We got Gun-Hee on 15 December 2006, the day before he turned three months old.

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We tried to keep him separated from Tessie, Kylie and Patrick when we first brought him home. That lasted about five minutes. He would have none of it. The older cats were…not the most welcoming at first.

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Gun-hee didn’t care.

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He just stood his ground.

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For some reason, Patrick was his particular favourite. Patrick was still missing Harri, who had died four months earlier.

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Gun-Hee eventually wore him down.

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He loved Patrick.

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Kylie was the closest to him in age (she was only 17 months older than him), so they also became friends rather quickly.

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Tessie was a little slower to thaw.

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But Gun-Hee eventually melted her, too.

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He also loved the floor-to-ceiling cat tree in my old apartment.

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He loved being on the top, epsecially.

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Rory takes on that same floor-to-ceiling cat tree and, if she falls off, she just climbs back up. As I am typing this, she’s at the very top of it, trying to touch the ceiling. Gun-Hee was like that, too.

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Another thing they have in common is shoulder-riding. Neither Jake, Angel, Freddy or even Logan have ever been able to stay on a shoulder. Jake is particularly bad at it; I say it’s like he has magnets on his feet that are the opposite of the ones on people’s shoulders and he just can’t stay on. It’s nice to have a shoulder-riding kitten again.

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And Gun-Hee could be cuddly, too. Just like Rory. It’s a little eerie how much she reminds me of him.

Aby-a-Day – 6 April: Alfred’s father (Friday flashback)

This is the fourth installment of posts about Alfred’s family. I was lucky enough to get to meet both of his parents, all of his littermates, and some other relations as well. Today we meet Alfred’s father and his cousins. Last week’s post is here.

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Freddy’s father is an absolutely stunning ruddy named SE*Maghreb’s Snusmumriken. Of course, his father’s awesome ruddiness is also part of the reason why Freddy is so dark for a black silver Aby.

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He is also a poser, like Jacoby. He knows how handsome he is!

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Snus is also super friendly, which has definitely rubbed off on our Freddy.

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He’s also brilliant with kittens. Which is lovely; not all tomcats are.

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Especially when the kittens aren’t theirs! These cute sorrel babies are actually Snus’ sister’s kits.

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It reminded me a bit of watching lion cubs play with the big male lion.

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Those cousins were pretty adorable, too. Either playing alone…

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(Hey! Be careful!)

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…or together.

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The cousins were also supremely adept at posing, just like their father.

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…Well. Mostly.

But it was so much fun and such a special opportunity to meet so many members of Freddy’s family! Not often you get the chance to do that.

Aby-a-Day – 30 March: Alfred and his mother (part three)(Friday Flashback)

This is the third installment of posts about Alfred’s family. I was lucky enough to get to meet both of his parents, all of his littermates, and some other relations as well. Today we’ll see a little bit of Freddy’s relationship with his mother. Last week’s post is here.

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While we were visiting Alfred and his littermates, Artemis, their mother, decided that Freddy needed to go upstairs to bed.

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Although she’s had several litters, Artemis seems a little unclear on the whole “carrying kittens by their scruffs” concept.

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She sort of carried him by his front neck.

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Of course, it didn’t help that Freddy wasn’t sleepy and didn’t want to go to bed upstairs.

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Okay, upstairs we go, little man.

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…A slight readjustment of grip…and we’re carrying, we’re carrying…

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Come on, you little brat…cooperate. Mommy needs…I mean, YOU need a nap!

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Mother knows best, after all.

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…And up the stairs she whisks him.

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Say goodnight, Freddy.

But what’s funny is, when Freddy wants to grab Logan by the scruff…he usually grabs him by the throat, just like his mother did to him. The only difference is, Logan doesn’t put up with it.

Aby-a-Day – 23 March: Freddy’s family (part two)(Friday Flashback)

This is the second installment of posts about Alfred’s family. I was lucky enough to get to meet both of his parents, all of his littermates, and some other relations as well. Today we’ll meet Freddy’s mom and littermates. Last week’s post is here.

Alfred’s mother, Artemis, is devoted to her kittens. She went from having a singleton, Beaver, to a very active litter of five. Five is a large litter by Abyssinian standards!

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Monitoring five kittens is a lot of work!

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Especially these kittens! At times, they seemed to fly around the living room!

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She took time to spend a little one-on-one time with each kitten. Here she feeds Freddy’s brother, Bertil…

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…until she decided he was finished.

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She also spent a little quality time with both her sons. Freddy and Bertil have a little cuddle, wash and snack with mum.

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His sisters were busy, too. Märta and Greta were very interested in me, my camera, and my phone.

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Meanwhile, Kerstin played on the climbing board.

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I wonder if fighting his siblings for a place at the milk bar is what made him so food-obsessed?

Aby-a- Day – 16 March: Freddy then and now (part one) (Friday Flashback)

Alfred’s story actually started on 21 March 2016, when his mother, Artemis, had a litter of blue silver kittens. Sadly, only one survived, a little boy named Beaver.

Karin, his breeder, posted endless photos and videos of him as he grew up. He was a charming, sweet little survivor, growing up without kittens his own age, just his mother, father and older sister. I fell in love with him and would have adopted him in a heartbeat …but he was already spoken for.

But then, last year in February, Artemis had another litter. And this time, there were FIVE kittens, and every single one survived! There were three girls (Greta, Märta and Kerstin), two boys (Albert and Bertil), and four of them were black silver Abys while Märta, was Ruddy. They were all named after characters in Astrid Lindgren‘s books.

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When he was five weeks old, Freddy met the love of his life…food!

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Freddy at six weeks, showing off.

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Freddy has always been a bit of a goofball.

It’s wonderful to watch your kitten grow up…I have seen photos of Jacoby’s littermates and siblings, and met his father, uncle and one brother, but I never got to see them all together. And I got to see Logan together with his sister and mother and several cousins, but I didn’t get to meet his father. Freddy’s the only one I’ve seen grow up from birth, met all his littermates (and also a half-sister) as well as his father and some cousins.

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We went to Stockholm when Freddy and his siblings were just seven weeks old. We got to play with them and watch them interact with each other…something I didn’t get to do with the others.

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Watching five kittens play in a house that’s basically set up as a kitten playground is a lot of fun!

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Karin had a ton of interactive climbing play areas for the kittens…

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…Like this hanging mesh tunnel from IKEA. I actually found one for our kitten room here…but Freddy pulled it out of the ceiling.

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Freddy has always liked to be on a high perch.

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It was so much fun watching the kittens play! I took so many photos…too many for just one Friday Flashback. So, come back next Friday for more of Freddy and his family!