Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Pillow Talk

Meows from Mudpie!

Over the past couple weeks I've found a new place to sleep at night - on Mommy's flannel pillowcase, wrapped around her head. Mommy loves it just as much as I do saying it gives her more ability to move than when I'm sleeping around her legs and feet, plus it's super cozy for both of us!

The other night she was able to snap a picture of me waiting for her to join me. You'll notice one of our Garfield friends and part of the pumpkin pillow we won last fall from the Four-Legged Furballs in the background.

Thankfully Mommy had already moved another pillow that resides on our bed. You'll never believe it. (Actually, you probably won't be one bit surprised.)

Can you imagine? He hangs out there on our bed all day and anytime I want to go in for a nap by myself, there he is.

Mommy says he could do anything on our bed he wanted to.

That's just being naughty, Mommy.

Do any other kitties enjoy sharing a pillow with their human?
Do your humans have any interesting pillows on their bed?

Monday, April 27, 2020

Kiss An Angel Good Morning #MewsicMovesMe

The theme of this week's Mewsic Moves Me blog hop is "angels" in song titles or lyrics.

I couldn't decide between two Conway songs this week so I'm using them both. Anyone surprised? This first one he wrote, and I think even non-country music lovers will enjoy it. Make sure you listen all the way through because there's a bit of a twist in the story at the end.

This song is likely to bring a tear to the eyes of most parents out there. No doubt Conway recorded it for his own children, 3 of whom are in the picture that accompanies the video.

I practically never use modern-day country songs in these posts, but this one is an exception.
My favorite line...I'd die for her and she lives for me.

I had the opportunity to meet John Michael Montgomery on his bus back in 1995 in Malone, New York. His brother Eddie, half of Montgomery Gentry, was the one who took our photo!

A country classic from 1985...

Do you have a favorite "angelic" tune?

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Spring Fling #CaturdayArt

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 Four-Legged Furballs!

Mommy's answers:

1. If I couldn't live in my country, I would live in England. I've always been a bit of an Anglophile.

2. I wish I had kept less stuff from my childhood. I think it's harder to part with now!

Mudpie's answers:

3. I would choose squeezies over just about anything else. Except Mommy. Most of the time...

4. Being loved by everyone doesn't matter in the long run (even though it's really nice!) Mommy thinks I hung the moon and that's all that really matters.

Friday, April 24, 2020

The Purrfect 10: Fascinating Facts About Hairballs (With Help From Scruffy Paws!)

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.

One of my most vivid childhood memories is coming home from grocery shopping with my parents, sitting down on the couch while wearing shorts, and landing on a freshly deposited hairball. To say I jumped up in record time would be an understatement, yet what cat mom or dad hasn't had a similar experience? 

In honor of National Hairball Awareness Day, which is observed annually on the last Friday in April, this month's Purrfect 10 features some fascinating facts about the bane of every cat's (and cat owner's) existence...

1) The scientific name for hairballs is trichobezoar. "Trich" is Greek for hair and a bezoar is any mass found in the stomach or intestines.

2) Cats are prone to hairballs because they're such fastidious groomers. Hairballs form when loose hair is swallowed and builds up in the stomach. Ideally it passes through the digestive tract and gets deposited in the litter box but sometimes it forms a mass that needs to be regurgitated. They don't end up looking like balls at all but instead become tube shaped when they travel through the narrow esophagus on the way out.

3) While cats are viewed as the most common culprits to suffer from hairballs, they are not alone. Rabbits groom themselves the same way cats do, but hairballs are especially dangerous because they cannot regurgitate them, making swift medical intervention important. Cattle are also known to accumulate hairballs but don't frequently vomit, so they are usually found after death and can be quite large.

4) Hairballs are most prevalent during the spring when cats shed their winter coats but removing as much excess fur as possible through regular brushing will help prevent them from forming year round. You can also assist your cat with hairball-fighting cat treats, increased fiber in their diet, a small addition of olive oil, pumpkin, or butter to cat food, and proper hydration.

5) Kittens aren't as likely as adult cats to have hairball issues because they have less fur and don't groom themselves as thoroughly. As cats age they become more adept groomers and therefore more proficient at removing fur from their coats with their tongues.

6) Some cats are more prone to hairballs than others. Long-haired breeds such as Persians and Maine Coons tend to form them more frequently.

7) Cats have developed a digestive tract that can handle normal amounts of fur without a problem, so don't assume that all coughing and vomiting is caused by hairballs. If your cat is frequently displaying symptoms, and especially if a hairball doesn't present, other medical issues such as asthma, allergies, cardiac disease and intestinal disorders should be investigated.

8) Innocent as they seem, hairballs can cause serious health problems. If you notice the following hairball symptoms, be sure to contact your veterinarian, as they could indicate that a hairball has caused a potentially life-threatening blockage: 
  • Ongoing vomiting, gagging, retching, or hacking without producing a hairball
  • Lack of appetite
  • Lethargy
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
9) The word bezoar traces back to the Persian pahnzehr, which means "antidote." Introduced to Europe from the Middle East in the 11th century, ground-up hairballs were reputed to cure poisoning, epilepsy, and the plague. They were even set in gold during the Middle Ages!

10) In 2012 a long-haired British cat named Gemma underwent surgery for a suspected tumor that was the size of two cricket balls. It ended up being a 5″ wide hairball weighing 7.5 ounces that looked like a newborn puppy!

Long-time readers of our blog might remember that when Mudpie was diagnosed with asthma shortly after I adopted her, I initially placed the blame on hairballs even though none ever materialized. Thankfully her asthma is extremely mild and I can't even remember the last time she coughed, but I try to stay on top of any hairball issues that may develop so if her asthma symptoms flare up again I'll know the difference.

We recently received a bag of Hairball Be Gone treats from Scruffy Paws. These treats, just like all Scruffy Paws products, are carefully made of only the best natural ingredients, right here in the USA. Not only are they formulated to help with hairballs, but they're also packed with fur & skin supporting nutrients such as Lecithin for hydration, Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids which help keep the GI tract healthy, Biotin for healthy skin & hair, plus Zinc, Cranberry Powder and Psyllium, all of which further support your cats skin, hair and urinary tract health. How pawsome are treats that not only assist with a specific issue, but also contain vitamins & minerals to aid in overall health too?

It's also important to note what these treats do NOT contain: NO mineral oil which blocks nutrient absorption and disrupts normal digestion, NO diuretic herbs which can dehydrate your cat and reduce skin moisture leading to an increase in hairball formation, and NO laxatives or lubricants that disrupt digestion.

Mudpie would like to add that they're super tasty too! I give her a couple treats each day broken up into smaller pieces, and I always get an "is that all???" look

We'll be writing more about Scruffy Paws and some of their other supplements in an upcoming post, and in the meantime we encourage you to visit their website. While you're there be sure to check out their blog The Knowledge Base. They've been posting some really informative articles about cats and COVID-19.

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Scruffy Paws. I am being compensated for featuring this content but we only share information we feel is relevant to our readers.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Wet Wood & Window Whiffies #PetPhotoFails

Meows from Mudpie!

This month we're running our photo fail a couple days earlier because we have a sponsored post scheduled for Friday. Feel free to link your bloopers up today, tomorrow, or on Friday as usual!

Today's photo fail has a story behind it. Back on Halloween night (which seems like a century ago), we had a really bad storm here in Vermont when about 4" of rain fell in just a couple hours. All that water caused the wood on both the back door and my favorite bathroom window to swell horribly. For weeks after the storm Mommy had to slam the back door every time she left the house so it would latch properly. Eventually the door returned to normal, but my favorite window was another story.

Not only did the wood swell so much my window became impossible to open, it also froze completely shut once the winter weather moved in. Mommy was worried sick that she was never going to be able to open it properly again and started thinking it was completely ruined and would need to be replaced. On more than one occasion she was able to lift it an inch or two, but never more than that.

Then one day early last month the temperature hit 60 and she became determined to open the window for me come hell or high water. (Her words.) She grunted, groaned, and uttered more than a few HBO words, but eventually she got the window open and I was more than ready to hop right in...even though there was still snow on the ground!

Obviously the photo she took to capture my first window whiffies of the season (which had been all too uncertain just moments before) leaves a lot to be desired, but the most important thing is the window now opens normally and I've been enjoying it daily ever since! Thank Cod Mommy has super-human strength! MOL

That's our blooper...let's see yours!

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Monday, April 20, 2020

Meet Mister Mo

Mondays are usually all about books or music here on our blog, but today we decided to do something different and introduce you to a friend of ours.

For the past few years I've been feeding a kitty outside that I named "Mo" because he looks so much like Morris. He has always looked very well cared for so I've never worried that he didn't have a home, he's just a neighbor kitty who likes to stop by for a snack each night. (I just wish I knew where he lived!)

Here's the thing about Mo - he's incredibly skittish and even after feeding him all this time he's never allowed me to touch him or even come near him. I'm expected to drop his food out the door, and then close the door immediately, thank you very much. He always comes after 8PM once it's gotten dark and waits for me to look for him from under the car where he can't be seen by passersby.

Things started to change the past couple weeks though as the days are getting longer and Mo is starting to arrive when it's still light out! He has even started to wait for me in the driveway as opposed to under the car, and then come down to the back step while I'm preparing the food! He still runs when I open the door, but I feel like I'm making progress in gaining his trust.

These pictures aren't great because they were taken through the door, but isn't he adorable? While I named him Mo after Morris, in these pictures he makes me think of Puss in Boots from the Shrek franchise.

Strangely enough, while Mudpie can't stand other animals in her yard, she watches Mo with fascination! She's never really reacted to his presence and has even watched him eat through the door. Maybe she feels bad that he's such a nervous wreck and is trying to tell him he has nothing to fear here?

We hope you enjoyed meeting our little friend Mo. Cross your paws that one day I get to take a picture of him while he's actually allowing me to pet him!

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Caturday Art

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 Four-Legged Furballs!

Mommy's answers:

1. I can't wait for shops besides pharmacies, big box and grocery stores to reopen after the quarantine. I especially miss browsing Christmas Tree Shop, HomeGoods and TJ Maxx.

2. I am in no hurry for restaurants to reopen after the quarantine, only because I rarely if ever eat out. I certainly want all restaurant employees to be able to get back to work though.

Mudpie's answers:

3. These days, content is my default mood. I know the world is a crazy place right now but Mommy and I are together and that's all that really matters to me.

4. Have I ever told you I like maple walnut ice cream? I think I may have mentioned it ages ago but Mommy had forgotten until the other night when she had some and I sat at her feet waiting for a taste.

Friday, April 17, 2020

Tortoiseshell Cat Appreciation Day

Over the past 13 years I've been the lucky mom to a trio of torties. To say I think these feisty, unique cats are one of God's most beautiful creations would be an understatement. I love everything about their sweet souls and tender hearts, tortitude and all.

Nowadays there's a national day set aside to celebrate just about anything you can think of, and for the longest time I've been wondering when someone would get around to creating a Tortoiseshell Cat Appreciation Day. As recently as a few months ago I started thinking about trying to get something started myself, possibly this summer on Mudpie's Gotcha Day.

Thankfully my tortie-loving friend Ingrid at The Conscious Cat got the ball rolling in designating today as Tortoiseshell Cat Appreciation Day in honor of her dear Ruby's Gotcha Day.

For anyone interested in reading about my history with torties, it can be found in my article A Decade of Tortitude: The Magic & Mystique Of My Heart Cats, which won a Certificate of Excellence from the Cat Writers Association a few years ago.

Since this is a day to turn the internet brown, tan, gold, black, cinnamon, and every tortie color in between, we thought it would be the purrfect time to share once again the very special legend explaining how they got their unique colors, loosely translated from the Spanish version.

We hope you'll join us today in sharing your torties all over social media. The internet will be a much more beautiful place over the next 24 hours now that we've given them a day to take over the world! (Officially, anyways. Anyone owned by a tortie knows they already own their little corner of the world!)

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Unboxing April's CatLadyBox

The theme of April's CatLadyBox was Garden's what was inside!

Featured Cat Lady Artist: Karen Obuhanych

Garden Cat Outdoor Decor: While this would be adorable out in the garden or on a catio, this little kitty will most likely stay put in my living room. I want to enjoy looking at it year round.

Happy Cat Silicone Wine Glasses: Wine glasses you can fold up and put in your genius is that? Crazy about the colors too.

MEOW Hat: I don't wear ball caps that often, but when I do it must be cat-related. A fashionable way to wear your cat love with pride.

Wiggle Worms Wand Toy: This toy is like fishing for cats, complete with various colored worms for their batting pleasure.

Velvety Succulent Catnip Toy: Mudpie had this toy out of the box the minute I opened it!

Not a subscriber yet? Visit CatLadyBox today!

Interested in purchasing individual items from past boxes? You can do that too!

Disclosure: I receive a discount on my CatLadyBox subscription as a thank you for my monthly review. Regardless of compensation received, we only share information we feel is relevant to our readers.

Monday, April 13, 2020

Felines & Fools #MewsicMovesMe

The theme of this week's Mewsic Moves Me blog hop is ‘Fool’ song titles or lyrics. Turns out being a fool is a common theme in country music! Here are a handful of favorites...

We hope you enjoy our "foolish" choices this week...let us know if you have a favorite!

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Easter Art & Selfies

And now our weekly answers for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and Four-Legged Furballs...

Mommy's answers:

1. I am never without something to do. So much to do, so little time.

2. For Easter this year, I will be having a quiet dinner with my parents.

Mudpie's answers:

3. I would want the Easter Bunny to leave me a basket filled with SQUEEZIES!!! Did anyone honestly think I'd say anything else?!?!

4. When times get tough, cuddle a cat. We make everything better.

Hope everyone has a purrfect Easter, and we'll see you on Monday!

Friday, April 10, 2020

Catify Your Home Office #StandWithSmall

Over the years I've become a huge fan of Etsy, and because of that we've done many Etsy gift guides here on our blog. Thanks to their global community of sellers featuring a wide variety of one-of-a-kind handcrafted items and vintage treasures, I've purchased countless unique gifts, my cats have gotten lots of fun homemade toys, and my collection of cat-related trinkets has grown exponentially. (And yes, I've even managed to find a rare Conway item every now and then on Etsy!)

With many of us spending more time at home now than ever before, not to mention the surge of people working from home, we decided to put together an Etsy guide featuring items to help you "catify" your home office. Even if your lazy four-legged co-worker is getting tired of you constantly hanging around their house interrupting their routine, these fun pieces will always be there ready to lend you a helping paw!

Small businesses are counting on our support now more than ever. Let's do some shopping!

We hope you enjoy our picks, and don't forget, if you find something here you like and make a purchase using our affiliate links, Mudpie gets a little money for her piggy bank!

Monday, April 6, 2020

April Retro Country Rewind #MewsicMovesMe

Last year we premiered our mewsic feature "Retro Country Rewind," a look back at favorite songs that hit #1 during that month from 30, 35, 40 plus years ago. This year we'll be delving into #1 hits from 1970, 1975, 1980, and so on. Let's take a look at April for this freebie week in the Mewsic Moves Me blog hop...

35 Years Ago - 1985, Country Girls, John Schneider

40 Years Ago - 1980, A Lesson In Leavin', Dottie West

45 Years Ago - 1975, Always Wanting You, Merle Haggard

50 Years Ago - 1970, Is Anybody Goin' to San Antone, Charlie Pride

We hope you enjoy our choices this month!

Let us know if you have a favorite!