Happy “World Cat Day”

My cat Livia.

Livia showing off her Siamese Baby Blues

If you love your fur baby like I do. I’m celebrating with the rest of the world today “World Cat Day” with my precious fur-girl Livia! Tomorrow is Livia’s 10th birthday. Being a Siamese/Tabby mix (mother was tabby, father Siamese) she’s a loving but persnickety one! My family has nicknamed her “The Queen” because she is beyond spoiled! She is a life-saver and my ESA cat. My life would never have been as enriched the last 10 years with my loving, sometimes moody (moody and talkative, her Siamese traits coming out!) and aloof, but always is waiting for me when I return home, we are buddies. I remember first seeing her when she was only days old with her eyes still closed, just a wee thing, at 5 weeks, I took her home with me and that first night she slept in my hair and tried to suckle in my (now ex) husband’s arm pit hair! She and my senior cat, Socks, who was 16 then, took on the role of grandpa and they were instant friends and sometimes, I think she preferred to hang out with him than interact with us humans! At times, she got on his nerves, but it also brought out some youthful behavior in my beloved older fur boy! A year later when he died, at home, I was heartbroken and Livia missed him as well. But it is at this point, that she began to bond even stronger with me, and I became like her human mama and she my fur daughter. We are perfect for each other, for I am unique and a bit eccentric and have my mental moments! And she knows how to perform her duties well and will distract me or insist I remove myself from a situation or circumstance that is causing me anxiety and get me to set my attention on her, thus alleviating my level of being upset. As well, as she will alert me if someone is at the door or if there is an intruder or fire or other type of alarm going off. I owe my life to Livia and I hope I have shown her my appreciation. Which, I do believe Queen Livia knows she is valued and loved! ❤

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And you’d think she has dog DNA sneaked into her genes, for she always has chewed wiring and cords, she electrocuted herself chewing on Christmas tree lights many times and it didn’t stop her! (Yes, we tried using a spray bottle of water, and getting smaller trees that sit up higher, and did anything we could to try to prevent her being harmed). Thankfully, she has mellowed a bit with age with this, now she tends to chew my laptop cord where it plugs into my laptop, only when she’s right in front of me, as if to say, get off the PC mom, and give me your full attention NOW! For whatever reason, she has gotten better these last 2 1/2 years whilst living in central Illinois when it comes to chewing cords, it used to be a really terrible problem, in the past, I’ve had to replace many a mobile charging cord, and other PC related cables! She has adapted quite well to our new place and seems to adore our garden flat. She took the 9 miles move with ease and is happier than she was in the 2 bedroom house we lived in prior. Which surprised me, I thought, she would have preferred all that extra space, but she has windows to sit in, to enjoy “Cat TV” time (and we have wild bunnies, a few other cats, birds and a low-level flashing sign across the street tied to the Methodist Church the next street over, that all seem to catch her attention).

She isn’t scared when someone (others that live in our 80-year-old brick building, that has four 1 bedroom flats upstairs, and 3 garden flats, you get to via laundry room in the basement entry door at back of the building, the other 7 people who live here, walk by a window on occasion) being in a garden flat, our windows, though tall and large are only a matter of inches above outside ground level. Our building sits back away from the street with a lovely grass yard in front. I only wish the huge tree that sits in the front yard just outside the other garden flat on opposite side of front of building, was instead next to my flat! The fun Livia would have if I were able to hang my lovely bird feeder in a tree near my window, but alas, I’m in the corner that has drive-way to the car port parking for the 5 of us that get a parking space in back and parking for house next door, which my landlord also owns. But we can’t have it all, there are perks to my particular garden flat, it’s the biggest of the three, my kitchen is the largest and bathroom bigger by a bit, 2 of the 3 have a large long wall separating kitchen from the main living quarters room. I’ve been in all 3 garden flats and 1 is tiny. Tiny, tiny kitchen and appliances, less cupboard and counter space, all of his windows are very, very small, and it’s generally smaller except for the huge walk-in closest (that all 7 units in building all have) that runs along an entire wall and has TWO doors, one at each end of the room to enter it, it’s bigger than most house bedroom closets! I get the bigger garden flat, he gets the tiny one but his is always cool inside because it’s in back and never faces sun, the one next to me is same size as mine, but his flat is also much cooler than mine, due to the large tree and doesn’t face the sun on that side, and mine faces the sun ALL day so I’ll have to invest in air conditioning unit in late spring next year. For those that know me well, I’m a vampire, with insomnia issues, so I live in the flat that gets sun and bright light when it’s clear weather, so I have double sets of black out curtains and blinds to boot! But don’t worry, Livia gets to lounge in the kitchen window, which I do like light in my kitchen, so there’s no black out curtains in there. I’ll discuss the general and haunted history of my building in a different post. But I’ll give you this hint, the haunting presence has been experienced in the basement, in an area just outside of my flat front door, leading to laundry room. More information to follow for those interested in the paranormal 😉

Back to my cat with a wee bit of dog DNA! She also will chew mouse holes in all or any type of my clothes, so no clothes can ever be left out, all must be in closet, dresser, hamper with a lid, etc… (she even will chew holes in Levis, thick towels, anything from undergarments to just shy of a rug!). in all fairness, she didn’t begin this behavior of mouse-chewing clothes until she was 5 years old and the vet said it was directly related to stress, maybe due to having to move a few times but mostly likely it was because she had never been exposed to the torture that is fleas, as she was a Las Vegas cat and fleas cannot survive in the desert. And when I needed to move back home to San Diego for personal life circumstance reasons, a neighbor’s cat ran inside my apartment on last day we were moving things in, and unknown to me, dumped a bunch of fleas inside! Poor Livia, I didn’t notice until a month later when she was covered with fleas and they were all over in carpet, etc..They had not bitten us (my boyfriend, Kevin, at the time or me, for fleas prefer an animal host) which is why I had not noticed right away. She, being a very sensitive cat, I used only the kitten formula of the flea killing toxic crap (I hate putting toxic chemicals on my cat!) liquid applied on back of her neck/upper back. The fleas all ran to her face 😦 I used some natural powders and a spray on the carpet and on her (I did my research, they were not herbs that are harmful to cats, it was cinnamon based and the other citrus based, so no harsh or harmful herbs, which I mention this because a few years later, I used an all “natural herb based product” on her that claimed it was safe for cats, that caused her to froth at the mouth and it almost killed her! 😦 Luckily, I was able to wash most of it off of her in time and she made it through that horrible experience, but that happened later in Montana). These products I used this first time she ever experienced fleas smelled very good to me, but cat’s have a powerful keen smelling sense, so she didn’t love it. I kept applying the powder to the carpet, let it sit, then vacuüm it up, trapping the fleas and eggs in the vacuüm bag along with the natural flea killing powder. I can say that Livia was feeling better within a few days and a month later, there was no sign of a flea anywhere and we never experienced that again while in San Diego. The vet mentioned this most likely caused her change in behavior, and began her chewing my clothes (or his clothes :-p in earnest) for it was a very, very stressful experience for her. She is indoor only and even now, living in the mid-west, in an area where fleas thrive from late spring, through the hot, humid, and sometimes rainy summers, until it cools in October, and she has not had one flea on her in our 2 1/2 years in Illinois! 🙂

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I feel that pets, ESA and other service animals are like children, you make a life-time commitment to that animal to take care of its needs for the life of the animal. I have very little sympathy for people who drop off animals at kill shelters, move and leave them behind, drop them off somewhere, leave them locked outside, all because they just don’t want to have a pet anymore, or it’s inconvenient. I find this behavior selfish and right up there with abuse. I couldn’t work with the policing agency that investigates animal abuse and abandonment cases, for I’d want to subject them all (the perpetrators) to the same treatment they inflicted upon their precious pets, or just straight out hang ’em high or shoot ’em dead, old west style, frontier justice! So, yeah, not the job for me, I couldn’t handle what they see, I commend them for being able to do that job. I would never abandon my fur baby! And I even have made provisions that if something were to happen to me and I was no longer upon this earth, that a beloved family member has promised to take her in and give her the love and care she deserves.

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