HelenEdith's Blog

The minutiae of my life, plus website updates and book reviews

Posts Tagged ‘kittens’

What a set of teeth Rolo is showing off

Posted by HelenEdith on January 8, 2010

Rolo yawning

Last time Rolo yawned when I had the camera handy, I managed to cut off one of his ears (in the picture 🙂 ) when he tipped his head back during the yawning process, but in this picture, I managed to capture the yawn as near to perfectly as I think I will ever manage!

I think this picture is the cat equivalent of the horse laugh pictures you sometimes see! 😆

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Monty is a neat little cat

Posted by HelenEdith on January 7, 2010

Monty is a very neat little cat. He tends to hold his appendages in neatly rather than sprawling.

Monty sitting down neatly

He looked quite satisfied with himself in that first picture. In the second one, his tail isn’t neatly curled around himself, but is describing an arc behind him. He’s also got a bit of green-eye, which is the cat equivalent of the human red-eye. I must get out my super duper new flashgun instead of relying on the pop-up flash on my camera!

Monty sitting down neatly, but with his tail arced out behind him

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Rolo and Monty are becoming long pussycats

Posted by HelenEdith on January 6, 2010

Rolo and Monty continue to grow. When they stretch out, they are now a considerable length. Rolo tends to be an expansive cat, and can cover a lot of duvet when he puts his mind to it!

Rolo stretched out for a sleep

He did put his head up to take an interest in my photographic activities.

Rolo still stretched out for a sleep but with his head up

Monty also watched sleepily.

Monty stretched out for a sleep

He never seems to occupy quite as much space as Rolo, but he’s happily stretched out here.

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Playing with the light cord

Posted by HelenEdith on January 3, 2010

Both the cats love playing with the bathroom light pull cord. Monty has been able to do it since he was quite small, but it took Rolo a little longer as he didn’t get the idea of hanging on to the tie-back with one front paw and using the other front paw to bat the pull cord around.

However, now he’s bigger and better balanced, he has no trouble with the game, and can be seen here getting ready to launch himself at the dangling pull cord.

Rolo eyeing the pull cord for the bathroom light switch

The next picture shows the game in full swing! 🙂

Rolo playing with the pull cord for the bathroom light switch

Considering how often Monty has played with this pull cord, it’s surprising that I don’t also have pictures of him doing this. I will have to lie in wait for him!

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An important milestone for our pussycat boys

Posted by HelenEdith on January 2, 2010

Monty and Rolo playing with a loose piece of pull cord

The last day of 2009 was a significant last for our pussycat boys, as it was the day when they went to the vet to be neutered and microchipped.

Their operations were originally scheduled for 7th January, 2010, but over Christmas, their playfighting started to get a bit serious, and it seemed wise to take action before they found out how to mark their territory as well as indulging in stalking one another and trying to assert their dominance.

So last Thursday, they got put into separate cat carriers (a first for them, as they were small enough to fit in one carrier last time they needed to go in one) and they went to see Laura the vet. She performed their pre-op checks at our local clinic, and said that she could still hear Monty’s hear murmur, but only very faintly. She also looked in Monty’s mouth and confirmed that he no longer had any retained deciduous teeth, which made things simpler. The one surprise was when they went on the scales: Rolo was 3.2kg and Monty was 3.3kg! This is the first time Monty has ever been bigger than Rolo! He doesn’t look bigger, partly due to his dark colour, and partly because he is a neat cat rather than a sprawling cat like Rolo, but I’ve noticed when I pick him up that he’s solid.

Rolo miaowed piteously about being confined to the cat carrier, but when Laura wanted him out for his pre-op checks, he didn’t want to come out. Monty, who is very inquisitive, came straight out of his carrier!

They were transported over to the ParkVets Footscray Animal Hospital so that Laura could use the facilities over there for their operations. She phoned us up once their operations were complete and they were waking up and told us that all had gone well.

They were transported back to our local clinic and we went around to pick them up at 5:15pm – where we found them wearing perspex collars! They had both decided to lick their operation sites, and so they had to be collared. Monty, in particular, had gone a bit mad, and was looking a little inflamed, but Laura said that she was happy with him and he could go home.

We took the collars off to feed them, and Monty flatly refused to wear his again! 😯 He purred while I put it on, but as soon as I let him go, he did a Houdini act on it. The first time, I thought I couldn’t have tied it tight enough, so the second time I tied it as tight as I dared. He still managed to get the perspex part over his ears and was then in danger of choking himself. I didn’t try a third round with him. Rolo accepted his collar back on and lay down and went to sleep.

However, they woke up later and got into a playfight and I think Rolo may have scratched Monty – or maybe Monty’s inflamed nether regions were already sore. Anyway, I noticed that he was bleeding – not badly but just leaving blood where he sat down. I was a bit concerned, so phoned the vet and spoke to the evening duty vet, who turned out to have been present during their operations. She said not to worry, and just to keep an eye on him.

In the morning, Monty was much better, and neither of them seemed to want to lick themselves obsessively in the wrong place, so the collars did not last the recommended 48 hours. Monty, of course, had refused to stay in his, and I’d actually taken Rolo’s off before we went to bed, as he was running into things with it on and I thought he was more likely to get trapped by the collar than lick too much. As they were fine in the morning, I think I made the right decision.

Each cat has a patch of shaved fur on his right leg where a catheter was inserted during their operations. The catheter sites looked somewhat angry when we got them home, but now they just look like bare patches of skin. It will take about 6 weeks for their fur to grow back.

They were a bit subdued the day after their operations. They had a game of “scamper scamper”, but tired themselves out and went to sleep on our bed. They did the same thing again today, but seem almost back to normal now.

The picture was taken today and showed them playing with an old length of pull-cord. They have carted it all over the house. I thought it was in the kitchen, but it turned up on our bed.

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Oh no… Retained deciduous teeth

Posted by HelenEdith on January 2, 2010

Monty yawning and showing one of his retained deciduous teeth - an upper canine

The other day, I noticed a mark on Rolo’s fur and wondered if he’d hurt himself, but could find no trace of a wound, so I decided to look at Monty, to see if Monty had anything wrong with his mouth and could have left blood on Rolo. I didn’t find any sore spots inside Monty’s mouth, but what I did find was that his canine teeth were doubled up.

His new adult teeth had come through without his baby teeth falling out! As such teeth are jammed together, this can lead to the adult teeth growing in the wrong direction; and the overcrowding can result in food getting stuck between the teeth, so it is not a good thing.

Monty, along with Rolo, had a 7th January appointment for neutering, and I wondered about delaying it to see if nature would take its course, but in the end, the neutering appointment had to be brought forwards, rather than delayed.

Fortunately, Monty got rid of the excess teeth within a few days of my noticing them, so the vet didn’t have to do anything in his mouth while Monty was under anaesthetic. That was a relief, as I didn’t want to put Monty through an unnecessary dental procedure, but nor did I want to leave the problem untreated and potentially have to subject Monty to a second anaesthetic.

Rolo didn’t, to my knowledge, have any problem at all with his adult teeth. He yawned expansively and showed me his dental arrangements very comprehensively!

Rolo yawning

I wanted to get a picture of Monty’s mouth from that angle, but he just wouldn’t face me to yawn! Rolo has done it a couple of times when I’ve had a camera ready, though.

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A young tennis fan

Posted by HelenEdith on September 3, 2009

Monty is becoming a tennis fan...

Monty is becoming a tennis fan...

Monty has taken a shine to the tennis on TV. If he’s on my lap, he watches alertly and his head moves as the ball travels across the screen. However, what he really likes to do is get up really close to the action.

Here he is watching Samantha Stosur and Vania King, but as his Mummy’s Australian, he should have done more to help Samantha Stosur to win! (She didn’t. 😦 )

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Life with Rolo and Monty

Posted by HelenEdith on September 3, 2009

Monty on Stephen's lap

Monty on Stephen's lap

Rolo and Monty are settling in really well. They’re becoming tearaways who love chasing up and down the stairs and around the hallway. When they duck into the kitchen and switch from carpet to lino, they need full opposite lock as they drift around the corner!

When they wind down, if I’m not sitting on my spot on the sofa, they like to occupy it. I think I should take that as a compliment! Here is Rolo in occupation. He looks a fraction worried, which isn’t his natural expression. He’s a very self-possessed little pussy-cat. It’s usually Monty who can look a little worried.

Rolo sitting on my spot on the sofa. I am honoured!

Rolo sitting on my spot on the sofa. I am honoured!

When they get tired, they love a lap, so here they both are in Stephen’s lap.

Rolo and Monty on Stephen's lap - with new paintbrushes to chew

Rolo and Monty on Stephen's lap - with new paintbrushes to chew

Here is Monty by himself in Stephen’s lap. This is a typical Monty expression. I’ve also managed with the help of my computer to bring out his striped nature. From a distance, he looks black, but he isn’t. He’s got more and more grey showing through and we think he will grow into a dark tabby.

Monty on Stephen's lap

Monty on Stephen's lap

I took another picture of Monty which I was going to include here, but it’s worthy of a separate post all to itself, so watch this space!

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Baby pussy-cats!

Posted by HelenEdith on August 31, 2009

Monty on the left and Rolo on the right

Monty on the left and Rolo on the right

Rolo and Monty joined our household on Saturday 29th August, 2009. Their mother is a cat who belongs to Stephen’s sister. We’d been thinking about getting a cat for a while, and we’d even done some preliminary tidying up and had some of the cat basics to hand, but we only found out that these two were going to be available a couple of weeks ago, and the house still isn’t ready for them!

We brought them home and put food out and let them out in the kitchen. It isn’t an ideal place, but it’s better than the alternatives. They spent their first 24 hours in there and they found a hidey hole at the back of the bottom shelf of the island bench. When we’d only had them an hour or two, we went in the kitchen, and they’d disappeared! That’s where they turned out to be. Phew!!!

It’s quite frightening to think that these two tiny balls of fur are going to depend on us for about the next 15 years. Stephen is an experienced cat owner, but I have not ever had sole responsibility for a cat; and the cats from my childhood didn’t face the dangers that these face, and therefore had a lot more freedom than these will, so we will have to work harder to look after them and keep them entertained.

Today we went shopping for a few more supplies and then we opened up some doors and let them out into the hallway and the living room. They loved it! They raced up and down the stairs and did some serious exploring under Stephen’s parka in the hallway; and then some more serious exploring in the living room. They managed to disappear again, but turned out to be asleep in a black bag which also contained a second-hand sat-nav. 🙂

Initially they weren’t all that friendly with us. They weren’t afraid of us: they just ducked out of the way when we went to touch them. However, we got them both to purr today; and I got Rolo onto my lap and kept him there with the incentive of a toy. I thought he’d lose interest and get off, but he lost interest and went to sleep! Monty decided that he was missing out and arrived in my lap, too. 😀 Eventually Rolo decided to get off and with the use of the same toy, we enticed him onto Stephen’s lap. Meanwhile, Monty slept on, and eventually I got stiff and put Monty into one hand and deposited him into Stephen’s lap.

Then I went out in the kitchen and cleaned out their feed bowl. They already seem to know that sort of noise after only being here a day 🙂 and they joined me in the kitchen, where I put them down the rest of a pouch of Felix chicken. I also put them down some Iams dry kitten food.

We wanted to shut them in the kitchen again tonight, but Rolo escaped into the hallway. I shut the kitchen door while I went and retrieved him; and Monty cried when he realised that he was shut in alone. When I came back with his brother, he decided to climb my leg! I’d better discourage that: It’s cute and only mildly painful in a just-weaned kitten, but it won’t stay cute for very long!

Rolo and Monty at play. Monty is on top. Doesn't he look fierce!

Rolo and Monty at play. Monty is on top. Doesn't he look fierce!

When we went to Stephen’s sisters place to look at these kittens, we thought that Rolo was the dominant one, but now we have them home, we think that Monty is. When they yawn, Monty appears to have more teeth through than Rolo does. Monty looks quite fierce in this picture of the two of them play-fighting.

Rolo is easy to photograph, but Monty, being dark, is more difficult. I’ve done a bit of work in PhotoShop to bring out his markings. We think that he might end up being silver with black tiger stripes, although right now he looks mostly black. However, he might be brown rather than silver. If the colour comes through reddish brown, we wonder whether he might be a she and not a he… 😕

They will need to visit the vet for their innoculations, so we will seek the vet’s opinion on Monty’s gender at that time. We’d rather that they’re both boys, but if they’re not, it will just be a little more complicated when neutering time comes around.

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