Saturday, May 27, 2017

Beachy Caturday Art

Meows from Mudpie!

Since this weekend is the unofficial start of summer and lots of you will be hitting the beach, I went over to Dreamscope and chose the Seaside effect for my Caturday Art project. I brightened it up even more in PicMonkey to make the colors really *pop* and then added a frame.

Blue is probably Mommy's least favorite color, but on me she thinks it looks divine!

Visit more artsy kitties at Athena's Caturday Art blog hop!

And now our weekly answers for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and McGuffy's Reader!

Mommy's answers:

1. My idea of roughing it is no WiFi. I *am* a blogger, after all.

2.I never get sick of talking about cats. Is there anything else worth talking about?

Mudpie's answers:

3. My youth is being spent loving life in a forever home, as every kitty's should.

4. My “golden years” are hopefully still many years away!

Friday, May 26, 2017

We're Members of the Kitterati!

Earlier this month we wrote about the Cat Rescuers documentary Kickstarter campaign which is now fully funded. As a matter of fact, the original goal was exceeded by more than $10,000 enabling the film to get finished faster and into the hands of people helping cats!

We were also offered the opportunity to participate in a feature on the film's website called Kitterati where they interview influencers in the cat industry about the importance of cat rescue.

We were happy to share our thoughts and so excited to see it published earlier this week. Interested in reading it? We thought you'd never ask!

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Bloodline: A Witch Cat Mystery by Vicki Vass Blog Tour

From the publisher: Fleeing from the witch trials in Salem, Terra Rowan finds herself in modern day Asheville, North Carolina. A dark spirit from the past hunts this last witch of Salem. With the help of the ladies of the Biltmore Society, Terra must discover the secret within the forest to preserve the bloodline.

This is not one of the cutesy witch cozies that are so popular today. It's a complex novel rich with history taking readers all the way back to the Salem Witch Trials of 1692. Beginning as Terra Rowan flees through the woods with witch hunters on her trail she seeks shelter in a cave and drinks a potion that her friend Elizabeth guarantees would save her. It turns her into a cat, and now 325 years later she is still trapped in the feline form and living in Asheville, North Carolina. As a cat Terra is able to communicate with Mrs. Twiggs, owner of the Leaf & Page shop, as well as a mysterious young girl named Abigail who is on the scene when Terra's dear friend, homeless man Lionel, is murdered in the alley. As the story goes back and forth between past and present the connection between Terra and Abigail deepens and when evil descends upon modern-day Asheville the coven faces it's greatest challenge in centuries.

The gothic atmosphere of this story is chilling and each character is well-developed and intriguing. The rare moment of levity comes in the form of Pixel, Terra's familiar who is also a cat. He serves his purpose as a witch's familiar but also has very cat-like qualities that are just adorable. His pure innocence is heartwarming and the part he plays in the climax of the story is riveting. Bloodline is a paranormal mystery unlike any I've read before and it stayed with me long after the final turn of the page.

Guest Post by Author Vicki Vass

Who doesn’t love cats? I do. Two years ago for my husband’s birthday, we adopted two shelter kittens, Pixel and Terra. They are now my writing companions, either helping me type by walking across the keyboard or laying on it. I have often wondered what is in their heads as they invade my space.

This curiosity of mine grew stronger when we brought our Australian shepherd puppy, Atticus, home last summer. Both cats had grown up with a dog. Our previous Australian shepherd Bandit was 12 when we brought the kittens home. Bandit was inclined to ignore the kittens. Often preferring to sleep the day away.

However, Atticus was not so inclined. True to his herding nature, Atticus enjoyed chasing the cats around the house. They, however, were not having it. They decided to fight back in their own way. Terra constantly plotted and Pixel became her willing accomplice. She brought treats to the puppy as if paying homage to him. Instead these treats were meant to have dastardly effects. There was a water bottle cap, a sock, a screw and many more items. She would drop them by his nose and then sit back watching him, waiting for him to eat it. I would rush around, pulling items from his mouth, watching her to make sure she wasn’t giving him treats.

I never thought they would become the friends they have. Now that Atticus is a year and has calmed down, I have occasionally found them sleeping together. But then we brought another Australian shepherd puppy, Tracker, into the house. Tracker loves to chase the cats. We are constantly pulling him off the cats. Terra has returned to her favorite pastime—bringing him treats—a sock, a screw, a bottle cap—whatever she can find. I was continuously fascinated by her devious nature and how willing Pixel is to support her endeavors.

Out of their antics grew the main characters for my new series, Bloodline: A Witch Cat Mystery. Both Terra and Pixel play major roles within the story, which crosses the line between reality and paranormal, spanning generations of time and space.

And, within this story, place plays a major role. My husband and I have traveled to Asheville, North Carolina, a lovely community surrounded by the Blue Ridge and Smoky mountains. The fog from the mountains provides an atmospheric quality to the town, often engulfing it and giving it its own mysticism. In the downtown area, are various tea shops, healing stone stores and advertisements for witch circles. I wanted to draw on all those images for this book so this book truly combines paranormal, mysticism and slight versions of alternate reality. I hope I do Asheville justice within its pages.

I also wanted to bring to light some of the ancient remedies that were used within the mountains by the local healers. I spent time researching and reading about these fascinating treatments and share some within the pages of the story. In future books, I plan to share more.


About the author: Vicki Vass traded in her reporter’s notebook to pursue her passion of writing cozy mysteries. Her Antique Hunter series was a finalist in the 2016 Mystery & Mayhem contest. Bloodline is the first book in the Witch Cat Mystery series.

Vicki has written more than 1,400 stories for the Chicago Tribune as well as other commercial publications including Home & Away, the Lutheran and Woman’s World. Her science fiction novel, The Lexicon, draws on her experience in Sudan while writing about the ongoing civil war for World Relief.

She lives in the Chicago area with her husband, writer and musician Brian Tedeschi, son Tony, Australian shepherd Bandit, kittens Terra and Pixel, seven koi and Gary the turtle.

Author Links –

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Purchase Link – Amazon

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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Purrfect 10: Things To Know About Microchipping Your Cat

We love reading and researching anything and everything about cats, and wanted to find a fun and unique way to share the interesting facts we learn with you! Since top 10 lists are very popular in the blogosphere, we created The Purrfect 10 as a way to present 10 educational or fascinating tidbits about a wide variety of cat-related topics, everything from health issues to cat breeds to famous felines.

There's nothing much more terrifying than the thoughts of a beloved cat or dog going missing. Even indoor pets aren't immune from getting lost because accidents can and do happen to even the most vigilant pet parent. While a tag providing your phone number is great, collars can fall off or be removed, which is what makes the addition of a microchip so important.

In honor of National Chip Your Pet Month, May's edition of The Purrfect 10 features what you need to know about microchipping your cat...

1) A microchip is a small computer chip containing information linking you to your cat. It's about the same size as a grain of rice and comes enclosed in a glass cylinder.

2) Inserting a microchip takes only a few seconds and can be done during a routine vet visit. No surgery or anesthesia is required although if your pet is already under anesthesia for a procedure such as spay/neuter it can be done at the same time.

3) The microchip is inserted subcutaneously (under the skin) between the shoulder blades using a hypodermic needle. It's no more painful than a regular vaccination although the needle is slightly larger.

4) Kittens can be chipped as young as 5 weeks old although the health and stability of the cat is the most important factor in determining when to go ahead with the procedure. Most shelters wait until 8 weeks old (and about 2 pounds) before inserting the chip.

5) Microchips are not tracking devices but rather radio-frequency identification (RFID) implants that provide permanent ID for your pet. They also don't require a power source like GPS. The chip is activated when a shelter or veterinarian waves an RFID scanner across a cat's body where the microchip is embedded. The scanner activates your pet's unique ID number that is used to retrieve a pet parent’s contact information from the pet recovery database.

6) The most important part of a cat's microchipping is registering the device with your contact information so you can be notified when your lost pet is found. At this time, there is not a central database in the U.S. for registering microchips; each manufacturer maintains its own database. Fortunately, microchip scanners display the name of the microchip's manufacturer when the microchip is read. There is also a Universal Pet Microchip Lookup website maintained by the American Animal Hospital Association which identifies the registries a microchip is enrolled with. Remember to keep your contact information up to date whenever you move or change phone numbers. Since more and more shelters today are implanting microchips into every animal that's adopted, make sure your new pet's microchip number is included in your adoption paperwork so you can get it registered in your name.

7) While a microchip is permanent identification, it is not recommended to take the place of a collar and ID tag. When a person sees a cat or dog with tags it's obvious they belong to someone. With a quick phone call your pet is back home where she belongs. A microchip requires that someone take the extra steps to bring the animal to a vet or shelter to be scanned, if they're even aware of microchips in the first place. Wearing both gives your pet the best possible chance of getting home safely.

8) A microchip is designed to last for the entirety of your cat's lifetime because it is composed of biocompatible glass that will not degenerate over time. Since they require no power source and have no moving parts there's nothing that can wear out or need to be replaced. It's still a good idea to ask your vet to scan it during yearly check-ups to ensure that it's functioning as it should.

9) In rare occasions microchips can migrate (although since it's inserted under the skin it can't travel to any major organs), so shelters and vets will scan a lost cat or dog’s entire body to check for a microchip. A microchip will also show up on an x-ray, so that's another way to look for one.

10) Cats that are microchipped are more than 20 times as likely to be returned to their owners!

Is your cat microchipped?

Monday, May 22, 2017

Tortie Shorties on Mystery Monday

Welcome to this week's edition of Tortie Shorties on Mystery Monday!

We hope you enjoy our choices.

From the publisher: Blorange tabby Max and ragamuffin Dooley are on the case again. This time a world-famous reality star has been found murdered in her own bed, and it looks like the crime just might be terror-related. The Kenspeckles, stars of the well-known reality show Keeping Up with the Kenspeckles, are in town to film a new season of their show, so the case soon turns into a complete media circus, with the Kenspeckles insisting the entire investigation is filmed for their show. Odelia Poole, Hampton Cove’s premier reporter, teams up with Detective Chase Kingsley to catch the killer, but with cameras filming their every move, and every Kenspeckle a suspect, they’re not making a lot of progress. Good thing Odelia’s cats Max and Dooley can sneak around undetected, tracking leads and hunting clues. But first they have to pacify Shana’s French Bulldog Kane, who just might be in possession of the clue that breaks the case. And they have to outsmart Chase’s black tabby Brutus, who has his own reasons to find the killer. Will Max and Dooley solve the case? Or will Brutus beat them to it? And will Dooley finally get to first tail with Harriet? Find out in Purrfect Revenge, the third installment in the funny cat mystery series The Mysteries of Max.

Tortie Shorties Review: It's no secret how much I adore this series and I couldn't be happier about how quickly the stories are being released. This third book takes place in the cut-throat world of reality TV when Shana Kenspeckles is beheaded in her family mansion. There's no shortage of suspects in a house with as much drama as the crazy Kardashian family. Once again Odelia and Chase team up to work the human angle, while kitties Max, Dooley, Harriet and Brutus do a little undercover investigating of their own...and just who do you think ends up with more successful results? Along the way there's trouble in paradise for lovebirds Brutus and Harriet, while Brutus and Max are forced to make an unlikely alliance. It's almost like a mini kitty soap opera and I just can't get enough.

From the publisher: 

A dead mayor.
A wacky aunt.
An uppity millionaire romance author.
And a town full of explosive secrets…

It’s one headache after another for witch and cafĂ© owner Ginger Westbrook.

When Mayor Penelope Ashby rolls her car off a driveway and into the ocean, everyone in the small, sleepy seaside town of Broomfield Bay, Oregon is shocked.
Everyone but Ginger’s Aunt Vivian, who “saw” the grisly death coming long before the unlikable mayor plunged into the Pacific.
But when it’s discovered that the death may not have been an accident, accusations start flying and Ginger and Vivian find themselves smack dab in the middle of a modern-day witch hunt.
Because strange things are afoot in Broomfield Bay this summer, and it will take all of Ginger’s powers – supernatural and otherwise – to keep the small town’s pitchforks and torches at bay.

Tortie Shorties Review: When Mayor Penelope Ashby's car goes off a cliff everyone comments on the treacherous roads surrounding her home, claiming they were an accident waiting to happen. But when it becomes apparent the crash was no accident, her brakes were cut, cafe owner and witch Ginger Westbrook is thrown into the thick of things thanks to the long-running feud between the mayor and her beloved Aunt Viv. Penelope certainly made more than one enemy in town, especially during a meeting of her exclusive book club where members were unwillingly locked in her home all night. When Vivian is arrested and is as nonchalant about it as can be, it's up to Ginger to be the responsible adult and find some answers.

Every character in this new series is so richly drawn and complex, especially newly-separated Ginger reuniting with childhood sweetheart Eddie (and the loads of history between them) to the quirky, carefree Stevie Nicks fanatic Vivian. Of course every good witch needs a cat, who in this case is orange tabby Lindsey Buckingham, and there's even a mysterious broom that plays a key role in the outcome of the story! The ending features a twist I never saw coming, perfectly setting up the second book in the series which can't come soon enough for this reader!

Disclaimer: As members of the Amazon Associates affiliate program, if you click on our links and buy something Mudpie gets a little money for her piggy bank! I bought my copy of Purrfect Revenge, and Ginger of the West was sent to me by the author.