Sweet Mau

Mau is a pretty cute cat, though I might be biased. It’s now been about 10 days since his dental surgery and being toothless hasn’t negatively affected his quality of life.

“This bed is so cozy!”

Aaron and I have noticed that he has become more playful and bats both crinkle balls and plastic springs around the house. Mau’s favorite toy might be the laser pointer, however, as he chases after the red dot with more gusto and stamina than either Garrus or Charlie. It’s highly amusing and delightful to watch all three cats skitter about the house trying to pounce on the elusive red dot. If I can, I’ll record a video of a play session and share it here on Purry Home Companion!

“Mama, I found a box! It’s such a nice box.”

Look at these handsome boys! I couldn’t resist snapping a photo when I saw them lined up like this.

Garrus and Mau demonstrate their nightly ottoman sprawl. Mau recently adopted this habit of flaunting his fluffy belly like this. It’s not a trap. I repeat: it’s not a trap!

Mau is Sick

On Wednesday morning, we received an unwelcome present: cat barf. Mau had puked overnight. Sometimes cats puke and they occasionally cough up hairballs as well. It’s gross and you have to clean it up. It’s the unpleasant part of cat ownership. If it’s a one-time or occasional thing (especially with hairballs with long-haired breeds), it’s not usually anything to worry about. But Mau puked up his breakfast, and vomited three more times after that over the course of the morning. Normally he has no trouble chowing down on the wet food we give him. His stool was also looser than usual, another indicator that his tummy was unhappy. We have no idea why we became sick, especially since he’s been sequestered from Garrus and Charlie.

I emailed the Austin Pets Alive clinic, described the symptoms, and asked if we should bring him in for an appointment. The answer was yes, although Mau was not happy about this decision. That afternoon we put him in the carrier without much trouble but once inside he started crying. He has a most pitiful mew. In the clinic lobby he wanted everyone to know his name most emphatically. In the exam room Mau received intravenous fluids, since he was dehydrated from vomiting, and an injection of Cerenia to him less nauseated and hopefully stop the vomiting. We were sent home with a regimen. We’ll keep a close eye on Mr. Mau to check his progress.

A few hours after we returned home, Mau appeared to have decompressed enough to come out and ask for cuddles. He climbed into Aaron’s ask and was positively delighted to be brushed. There was much showing off of his tail, licking, and air biscuits.

Update on Mau

On Sunday Aaron and I took Mau to his vet appointment. He walked right into the carrier but once he realized Aaron shut the door behind him, Mau was decidedly upset about it. He complained a bit when carried and in the car but became quiet in the waiting room.

One of the vets looked him over and diagnosed him with severe gingivitis and multiple abscessed teeth. It is likely that he will have most, if not all, of his teeth removed. Because his teeth are rotting, that is why his breath smells like death. We just have to wait for a slot to open up so Mau can have his surgery. Also, judging from the age and condition of his teeth, it looks like Mau is older than I initially thought. Rather than being 10, he’s 15 years old! He is a sweet old man and a good houseguest.

He hid and slept under the desk after we brought him back from the vet. Poor guy.

On the bright side, Mau is eating wet food well. Both he and Garrus eat about 1-1.5 cans a day! It appears that since Mau was surrendered to the shelter in May, he has gained about half a pound of weight. We spend time with him every day, brushing him frequently and providing comfy laps and scritches. He is most grateful for any and all types of attention and responds by being most affectionate.

I also recently learned that Mau and his housemates came from a hoarding situation, which shed light as to why all three had significant dental problems. The oldest of the three went into foster care and recently passed away in his sleep. The female, also older than Mau, has one eye, if I recall correctly, and chronic bronchitis. When I gave the shelter director an update on Mau, she thought that he was lucky to be in our house. Aaron and I genuinely hope that we can help him get healthy and find a loving home in which he can live out the rest of his life, preferably most of it in someone’s lap and purring.

We think that Mau may be a Himalayan or possibly a Balinese cat! Look at that sweet face!

Mau did not want me to read my book (pictured on the desk) and instead wanted me to devote all my attention to him. After all, he takes lap time most seriously, even more so than Boudicca did!

OMG Kittens!

I realized that I had not volunteered at the shelter recently because I had been preoccupied taking care of Boudicca for the last several months. With that in mind, I gathered up several cans of cat food that we weren’t using (Boudicca had not liked the brand or texture) and took them to the shelter for donation. Since their policy changed a bit, I filled out a couple of forms but once that was done, I was ready to go. After all, there were SEVEN KITTENS that were now in the adoption room. Obviously I had to visit them.

Such emphatic little squeaks!

I love black cats so I had to hold this one first. (I totally squeed with joy.) Note: s/he looks concerned because s/he got stuck on my shirt with those needle-sharp little claws!

Being this cute is most exhausting. Note: the all grey one was extra fuzzy-wuzzy. There may have been some swooning over this.

These tabby babies are being held by the cat volunteer mentor extraordinaire, Grandma Jean. (Everyone calls her this.) The tabbies had a lot to say about their nails being trimmed but they behaved well. Grandma Jean had little chats with the kittens in pairs so everyone received proper amounts of adoration. They also had lovely blue eyes but I couldn’t get a good photo because they were rather squirmy.

Day summary: I visited three adult kitties (see forthcoming post) and seven exquisitely cute kittens! Everyone got loved on, smooched, and babbled at, and I had the pleasure of rubbing some full kitten tummies too. I definitely came home on a kitten-high.

Adopt a Cat Month

Kitten season is here and so is Adopt a Cat Month! Did you know that more than 3.2 million cats enter animal shelters annually? Did you know that 860,000 cats are euthanized? Animals being euthanized due to lack of space and overpopulation makes me very sad, since this is a preventable problem. Spaying/neutering pets and catch-neuter/spay-release programs dramatically impact animal overpopulation issues in communities. If you want to add a fur person to your family, please, please consider checking out your local animal shelter or rescue group first. There are so many lovable cats (and dogs!) that deserve wonderful homes.

Moreover, this is Father’s Day weekend! Some shelters may run Father’s Day specials (read: discounts!) as well so be sure to ask about those too!

I’m so happy we adopted these two boys! I think they are quite handsome but I’m probably biased.

National Best Friends Day

Happy National Best Friends Day!

Take some time today to let your best friend and all your friends know how much they mean to you and that you appreciate and cherish their friendship! While you’re at it, pass along such warm regards to your pet friends too!

Ten months ago, Aaron and I fostered Garrus and Charlie. They had been introduced to one another at the shelter and immediately hit it off. We did not want to split them up and adopted them both. I might be biased but they really do have the cutest bromance under the sun. If one of them is at the vet or in another room, the other will search for his buddy (Charlie squeaks as he does this). They play games of chase, hide and seek, pounce, and batting toys around the house. Frequently we find them grooming or snuggling together, and it’s always adorable.

You can see why I bought them a dog bed. They need the extra room!

Hug Your Cat Day

Last night a storm blew through our area, filling the night with lots of lightning, thunder, and heavy rain. It knocked the power out for a few hours too. The storm’s noise and emergency weather alerts woke us up. Aaron went into the living room to get his phone and found Garrus lounging unperturbed on the ottoman. Charlie, however, was ill at ease and sought us out. It was a pleasant surprise to find, while partly asleep, Charlie eagerly searching for my hands and purring loudly when I started petting him. I sleepily hugged Charlie and he settled in my arms for about a minute, kneading, before leaving to investigate what rubs Aaron had to offer.

This morning I had an ottoman visit with Garrus. I was able to place him on my lap and give him neck and chest scritches, which he loves, as well as stroking his back and kissing his head. Cue the warm fuzzies when I heard him purring.

Hug Your Cat Day is a fun excuse to give your feline companion a little extra love. If your cat is not a cuddler or into being held, respect that. Instead try a play session, tasty treats, back strokes, and/or quality bonding time together.

We Will Snuggle Whether You Like It or Not

Several times a week, Aaron and I find a snuggle in progress. Sometimes Charlie and Garrus sleep next to one another while at other times, they snooze in a yin-yang circle or fallen dominoes. Frequently Charlie uses Garrus as a pillow, although Garrus does not seem to mind.

Earlier Aaron remarked, “You should come check out this snuggle.” In our house, snuggles are very serious business so I had to investigate. When I did, I laughed and had to snap a photo.

We don’t think Garrus was consulted before Charlie flopped on him. Nevertheless they slept like this for a while.

This was a couple of hours later. If you look closely, you can nearly see the z’s floating off of them.