Aby-a-Day – 27 Januari 2020: A kitchen mystery (Mischievious Movie Monday Mystery)

So the other day I walked into the kitchen, and the cabinet above the refrigerator, where we store the dry food we give Angel as a treat, was open. And the bag was…somehow…on the kitchen counter. Pretty sure it was Alfred, but he tried to frame Dashiell for the crime. For some reason, most of the photos I took were “Live Photos,” so here they are as a short YouTube video:

Aby-a-Day – 15 Juli: Do they miss us when we’re gone? (Monday Mystery)

Do our cats miss us when we’re gone? Alfred and Angel are used to us going away, I was particularly curious how Izaak and Lorelai would react to our being away, since usually when we go off on a trip, they come with us.

roryhome_7943

Hero the London Lion which I had seen in a shop in Covent Garden, but we were too tired and hungry to go in and look at him. Later, after a rest and some food, I wished I had stopped and gotten the “Lion in a British jumper” because he was wicked cute!

roryhome_7944

As luck would have it, I found him at the airport as we were leaving!

roryhome_7945

I introduced Hero to Rory…but she didn’t seem very impressed.

roryhome_7948

“Really mom? Really? You left us ALONE. For a WEEK. Without taking us with you! And you bring this thing back with you?

roryhome_7946

“Look at me. My eyes are bigger, and I am way cuter!”

In the end, I am not sure if Rory missed us…or the fact that we take her outside to run.

zakhome_7931

Meanwhile, the moment we walked in the door, Zak was yelling for his chicken neck.

zakhome_7932

After he had demolished it, we sat on the sofa and I gave him cuddles. At first, he seemed happy I was home…

zakhome_7933

…but then…

zakhome_7935

…I think he remembered how much mommy kisses him.

zakhome_7936

zakhome_7937

I have a deep suspicion that he didn’t miss the kissies.

zakhome_7938

But he did miss me.

zakhome_7940

So much so that he is clearly contemplating his escape from my dastardly clutches.

Aby-a-Day – 17 Juni: The nose knows (Medical Movie Monday)

This happened two summers ago. Jacoby was acting like he had something stuck in his nose or throat. I checked his mouth to make sure a string or something hadn’t gotten caught under his tongue, but there was nothing there. The way he was acting reminded me of when I’ve gotten a grain of rice stuck in the back of my throat in my nose; Jake was coughing and snorting in the same way.

jakegrassnoseIMG_9230

This is what he was doing (click the photo to watch the video in Flickr). We were growing cat grass on the balcony that summer, so I suspected that Jake might have inhaled a blade of grass and gotten it stuck in his pharynx or nasal passages.

jake-plantnose

So we went to the vet, and they flushed out his nose and checked him out. They noticed some irritation, but didn’t find any grass or plant matter. They prescribed antibiotics, just in case.

jake-yarrow

After we got home, however, I found what looked like some dried, clear cat barf on the floor in the room Jake ate in. But it wasn’t like a regular hairball or food barf…it was a tiny leaf! I had been right – Jake did have something stuck in his nose! He just managed to get it out by himself before the vet appointment.

yarrowgrass_7479

So, I did a little research and discovered that it was a small leaf of Yarrow! I only know Yarrow from the Warriors books (the medicine cats use it, and there’s a cat named Yarrowleaf in the more recent books, but I had no idea it was growing in our lawn! Because they mow once a week, it never gets a chance to grow tall or flower.

yarrow_7526

This Yarrow plant is entwined with a bicycle rack, so it misses getting mowed. This is what it looks like when it’s allowed to grow. Jake must have accidentally inhaled the little leaf when we went outside – he loved chewing on the grass, and the yarrow is mixed into the lawn. It was an interesting mystery, and I’m glad I was able to solve it.

Aby-a-Day – 1 April: Looks like we’re going back to Jönköping (Medical Monday Mystery)

Siiiiggghhh… And we had been doing so well, too. Jacoby has been on his treatment plan for several weeks, and he had been gaining weight nicely. But in the past week or so, he’s been…not himself. Less eager and excited about food, sleeping in unusual places (like the radiator bed, which I don’t think I have ever seen him in before), and just…not being himself. Most concerning, the last time I weighed Jake on 16 March, he was up to 4.8 kilos…and yesterday, he weighed 4.3 kilos.

jakeradiatorbedC06302

So…I called Min Veterinär this morning to leave a message, and then, completely by coincidence, Anicura called me an hour or so later. I made an appointment with them, just in case…and, when Min Vet called me back, we discussed it and decided it would be better to take Jake back to Anicura since they have all his recent treatment records. So it looks like Jake and I will be riding the rails to Jönköping this Friday.

Aby-a-Day – 21 Mars: Bathroom mystery (Thursday Things)

Alfred, it seems, is always up to something.

freddybathroomC06099

This is his newest thing. He sits in our bathroom. He’s not sleeping, he’s not grooming…

freddybathroomC06101

…He’s just sitting there on the rug.

freddybathroomC06102

I have no idea what he’s doing. Probably plotting how to take over the world. Or how to break into the cabinet where the food is kept. One of those.

And in case you’re wondering about those towels, Björn found them in this Etsy seller’s shop a couple of years ago. We thought they looked like Abys…so of course we ordered a set!

Aby-a-Day – 2 Januari: Wordless Wednesday (Caught in the act!)

freddycabinet1

Aby-a-Day – 24 September: What’s with the tail, Lorelai? (Monday Mystery)

The other day, I was doing stuff around the house, watching the Red Sox play the Indians in Cleveland (they won, by the way), when, suddenly, Lorelai jumped onto the coffee table all puffed up.

rorytailC01931

I have no idea what was out there. I looked out the window, but I couldn’t see anything.

rorytailC01934

She went to the window to see what it was, tail still a-puffed.

rorytailC01936

I will probably never know what triggered her.

Aby-a-Day – 30 July: Mars Liv 1980’s bronze cat statues (Miniature Monday)

One day Björn and I were at one of our favourite second-hand stores, and we came across three very interesting bronze cat statues from the 1980’s. The detail was rather marvelous on them, and they were quite solid. Of course, I couldn’t leave them behind. All three are signed by Magnus G:son Liedholm, who, we discovered, is well-known Swedish metal artist.

catbronze85C08466

All of the cats have “MARS LIV” and a year on a separate bronze plate. The oldest is dated 1985 and is a rather plain standing cat.

catbronze86C08473

The next one, dated 1986, is a stretching cat.

catbronze86C08474

I love that the two front paws are not together.

catbronze88C08469

My favourite is the third statue, dated 1988, with a cat rolling playfully onto its back. I love the one paw in the air!

catbronze88C08470

No matter how hard we Googled, we could not find out what “Mars Liv” is or was. But we did discover that there is at least one other statue out there, a sitting cat with several kittens (?) inside. It also appears that they used the same cats for different years and also multiple cats for the same years; we found the standing cat also dated ’83 and ’84, the lying cat dated ’84, and the stretching cat dated ’85. I wish I could discover what they were made to commemorate, because they are just so wonderful.

catbronze88C08453

But you knew I couldn’t get through a post without a little help…

rorycatbronze88C08455

Oh, hello, Lorelai.

rorycatbronze86C08477

What would I ever do without you, Rory?

Aby-a-Day 30 April: Jacoby’s mood swings (Medical Monday)

Last week, Jacoby and I went to the vet to check out his sudden shift in attitude.

jakevetIMG_3102

Now, those of you who have followed Jacoby’s career know that he is fine in any situation.

jakevetIMG_3104

And, most of the time I have known him, he has been bulletproof. He’s been through some stuff with me, and he survived it. But lately, he’s been pacing and yowling and growling, and also lashing out at Alfred and Angel. When I clipped his claws, he growled at me the entire time. He never growls when I clip his claws!

jakevetIMG_3107

But the last time we went to the vet, he needed to wear this almost-muzzle just to draw a blood sample!

jakevetIMG_3105

Jake growled and hissed throughout a completely normal examination. His growling and hissing is so…wrong. The vet palpated his body, and she decided he has some soreness, but his bloodwork was completely normal. She has him on Metacam for 20 days, so we’ll see if that helps.

This angriness in Jake is so unlike him…I hope he gets over it.

Aby-a-Day – 25 March: The Case of the Buried Bowls (Cinematic Sunday)

When Alfred and Logan joined our family, they ate together in our guest room, also known as the Kitten Room. This was because I didn’t want the big Abys eating the high-calorie kitten food, and I wanted to give the older cats a little break from the rambunctious kittens.

toysinbowlsIMG_E0298

Every time I went to let them out and collect the bowls, I would find them covered in a pile of toys. Both of them will make the motions of burying old food by scraping the floor around the dishes, so I couldn’t be sure who was doing it.

logantoysinbowlsIMG_0283

Logan would usually follow me when I collected the bowls, but he seemed almost as mystified as I was. He didn’t give me any clues as to whether or not it was him. So finally, I set my camera up on a tripod, started it up, and left it running while they ate. The original video was 23 minutes long, so I edited out the times that no cats were in the shot and nothing was happening. Even after clipping the boring bits out, the video is still almost 6½ minutes long!

So, if you don’t want to watch it in realtime, here is a sped-up version that takes half the time.

Either way, mystery solved! It’s Freddy, although Logan helps. And Freddy still buries his bowls, even now that he’s over a year old. He’s been eating on his own in the Kitten Room, and when I come to collect his dish, I always have to dig it out from underneath a pile of toys.

Even funnier, it seems to be a family trait. Freddy’s older half-sister, Hera, also covers up her food bowls when she’s finished eating!

Aby-a-Day – June 15: “Unknown” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

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

jakeangeloutsideC08601

So, here is a mystery for you. When we are INSIDE, Angel does not like Jacoby. He tries to play with her, and she hisses, growls and smacks him.

jakeangelunderC08602

But, when we are OUTSIDE…

jakeangelunderC08603

…Angel actually seeks out Jake’s company…

jakeangelunderC08605

…and his protection! Is it just the lack of a ceiling that makes her change her mind?

Aby-a-Day – March 7: Friends and Family at the TICA show

We had a wonderful surprise at the TICA show in Providence last weekend…we ran into our friend Matthew from the Mansfield show last August!

jakemattprovticaE_3538

Jacoby remembered him, too.

jakemattprovticaE_3536

Sadly, we didn’t see him until the very end of the second day, as we were packing up to go home.

jakemattprovticaE_3537

Still, it was awesome to see him again!

lewssonprovticaE_3484

lewssonprovticaE_3487

We also met this red Abyssinian named Eastwick Deja Reve of Khamsin. His father is Anubis Lew Zealand – Cousin Taz’s brother!

lewssonprovticaE_3481

What’s interesting is that his mother is from Finbheara – Finbheara Be Witched of Eastwick. I have been doing some sleuthing and I suspect that Angel may be from Finbheara and Abytopia.

lewssonprovticaE_3520

And it was a strange thing, because Deja Reve is a two-eyed boy, and Angel is a one-eyed girl…but his face really reminded me of Angel’s.

lewssonprovticaE_3523

This is an extreme zoom-and-crop, and it’s pretty grainy as a result, but doesn’t he look a bit like Angel in this photo? It definitely gives my theory that her mother is a Finbheara cat a little more credence!

lennieprovticaE_3527

Last but not least, I have a couple more photos of our friend Sparkle’s relative”Bones” (aka RW, NW SGCA Front Range Leonard H McCoy)!

lennieprovticaE_3528

His grandmother is Sparkle’s mother – Tajhara Tina Turner! They live on opposite ends of the country, but they’re only a generation apart. Isn’t that amazing?

Aby-a-Day – July 30: Things that go “bump” (and also “crash” and “bang”) in the night

Living with Abys turns you into a detective, a forensic scientist, and a very light sleeper. The other night, we’d all gone to bed and the house was dark and quiet when I heard a

CRASH!

from the general direction of the kitchen. It sounded plastic, rather than glass, so I wasn’t really alarmed. I reckoned it was just the plastic measuring cup we keep on the counter. But the sound continued, evolving into more of a BANGing, and sounding as though it was migrating from the kitchen towards the bedroom. Muttering words beginning with the letters W, T, and F, I got up to investigate and found this:

jakechickenpowderIMG007

Jacoby and Tessie went to the groomer’s this past Sunday, makes their own treats, including granulated chicken powder for sprinkling on top of food. I picked one up and tried it on their canned food Sunday and Monday nights, but they didn’t seem to be overly excited by it, so I skipped it the next couple of nights. And that’s what was being used by a hockey puck across the floors of our apartment.

jakechickenpowderIMG009

I have to apologise for the lack of photo quality on these; I couldn’t find a flashlight, so I used the flashlight app on my phone…which is actually a good thing, since if I’d actually had the flashlight there wouldn’t be any photographic evidence of this at all (and this becomes important later).

jakechickenpowderIMG008

The culprit was Jacoby, of course. (Who else could it possibly have been?) Doesn’t he seem proud of his accomplishment?

jakechickenpowderIMG010

I picked up the shaker container and put it back in the kitchen, carefully securing it in the little box we keep all the cat food additives and supplements in. Then I went back to bed.

In the morning I’m getting ready for work when I hear my husband say, “What is all this powder all over the place!? What happened?” And when I go to look, I see what he’s talking about; the shaker was back in the entryway, having somehow been separated from its cap, which was on the living room rug. The little wooden box had been knocked off of the counter and its contents were scattered all over the kitchen floor. And granulated chicken powder was everywhere!

chickenpowderIMG011

“Why didn’t you make sure the lid was on tight?” my husband asked me. “I DID!” I retorted. “In fact, I haven’t even opened it for days. I didn’t think they liked this powder that much, so I haven’t used it recently.”

“Then how did it get opened?” was his next question. And it’s a really good one, too. I have no freaking clue how it got opened. The lid on that bottle is a screw-top, and it’s smooth. I have no idea how anyone could open that thing without thumbs. Jake, either alone or with one or more accomplices, must have worked all night long on getting it open. Since there wasn’t any powder in the kitchen, and the lid was in the living room, it didn’t open on impact after being knocked from the counter to the floor.

I really need to set up some kind of motion-activated video camera to solve these sorts of mysteries.

Aby-a-Day – July 7: Water, water everywhere

Why do they prefer drinking out of my water cup over drinking from their own water bowls or from the running sink?

angelwatercupIMG010

That cannot be a comfortable way to quench your thirst.