CFFC: Torties and Calicos are Beige and Black

Torties are mostly black and beige…

?????????????????????????????????????

although sometimes they have a little white, too. Calico cats are white with black and beige splotches…

Tam makes friends with this friendly calico cat.

Both torties and calicos are mostly female! Something in their genetics links these colors with gender. Rare is the tortie male – although occasionally it happens!

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge – Colors that start with B.

 

Advertisements

Traveling Cat Companions

Sometimes I let my cat, Hazel, write this blog, but today I’m taking over so that not ALL  the pictures are of her!!

When I was a kid, we had dogs, but we also had cats, at my insistence! The first cat companion I had, we got from my aunt in Arizona, who had a litter of Manx kittens. Apparently my aunt came for a visit, I don’t remember, bringing the kitten with her. So he traveled all the way from Tucson, Arizona! We named him Kirry, which means “kitty” in Manx.

 

w/Kirry

Kirry in his last years, sitting on the lap of Mrs. Gregus, one of his favorite people. Mrs. Gregus took care of him in his old age. By that time, Kirry was almost blind.

 

The second cat, half Manx as it happened, that I had for an extended period was when I had moved in with my Brazilian boyfriend in L.A. (He later became my first husband.) He looked at her eyes under the seat of the car and said they looked like jewels, so we named her the Portuguese word for jewel: Jóia.  She was very affectionate toward us but skittish around others. When we moved to Brazil, we took her with us, so she was truly a traveling cat companion!

Joia

There are 2 pics that I scanned together. L: Joia is outside and wants to come in; R: Joia sleeping with my husband, Fernando, and my baby son, Jayme

Hazel, our “tortie” 6 1/2 year old cat companion, hasn’t traveled much. She’s an inside cat because there are foxes and coyotes that venture into suburban yards from the nearby forest preserve. She spends a lot of time on window sills, watching “Kitty TV!”  However, we are thinking of renting or buying a camper to travel around the country in, and in that case, she’ll become a traveling cat, too!

Here’s Hazel playing with her current favorite toy!

20170429_224942

20170429_224958

Ailsa’s Travel Theme: Animal Companions

CFFC: My bed and chair

When the humans who adopted me came to the shelter, it was lucky that I was spending time in the office! My bed was on a chair and a human started petting me and scratching around my neck.  I closed my eyes and purred contentedly.

Katy with Hazel at CARE shelter

The female human couldn’t make up her mind which cat to adopt. I don’t think she’d even seen me!  But the male human who had been petting me said, “I want this one!”

The female human looked over at me, seeing me for the first time. She came over to pet me too. They talked to the people at the shelter who told stories about me that the humans liked – about what a good mother I had been, and that made them sad – that I had been in the shelter a long time, after all my kittens were adopted, one by one. So that day, these humans decided to adopt me and take me to live with them!

Hazel playing and scratching

Now I have my own piece of furniture – this scratching post! Whenever someone comes home, I greet them and go immediately to  this spot, where I rub against the scratching post. See, it’s mine!! 

There are things I like attached to the scratching post, too: the carrot is full of catnip, which I sometimes rub against or lick, until I feel VERY content!  The leather string holds the carrot in place – the male human tied it there, and I can play with the ends that hang down. The red ribbon was left over from Christmas. I think I destroyed it, because it’s not there anymore.

The table and chair behind my scratching post belong to the humans, supposedly. The table is definitely within my territory. And the chair is mine whenever I decide to sleep on it!

Meow!

Hazel

 

CFFC: Furniture

 

 

CFFC: Legs and Feet

My cat Hazel loves to sleep on or between people’s legs! In the winter, she prefers a cozy, warm blanket to be covering the human’s legs.

20150119_203612

If she’s very content, she’ll take a cat nap with one leg stretched out.

IMAG1397

Sometimes she needs to have her claws clipped! Two people (at least) are required: one to hold her down and one to use the clippers.

IMAG2799

Legs & paws are also used for stretching

IMAG2641 (2)

 

and for playing.

IMAG2644

IMAG2656

DSCN8247

Cats are natural contortionists!

CFFC: Legs & Feet

WPC: Dinnertime

Meow! I’m Hazel and I love dinnertime – that is, HUMAN dinnertime!

I’m kind of bored with my own food, but there is always something that smells much better that my humans eat. So when I am hoping for a tidbit from their table, I sit in a very nice, polite pose, looking up at them. I sit up with my front paws together, very straight, and my tail curled behind me, like this:

20150116_180545

My begging expression is meant to entice my humans to give me something:

IMAG1310

Hurray! The male human is reaching down toward me with his finger – and something delectable is on it! I get nearer:

IMAG1312

He wants me to eat the piece of meat right off his finger, but I don’t like to do that. Please put it down on the floor, I say by looking down. He insists. I might bite you, I think. But he doesn’t give in (the female human always does) so I approach, sniff, take a tentative lick….then another, and finally the morsel is in my mouth! I chew, swallow, then I’m satisfied, so I walk away…maybe to see what’s in my own food bowl.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Treat

Meow! I’m Hazel, and I love party treats in fish and chicken flavors! All I need to do is sit next to my empty bowl and look up at my humans with eyes that say, “Please give me treats!”

20151031_143958Soon one of them is shaking the treats container and pouring them into my bowl.

20151030_223748Having my treats every day keeps me from going hungry between breakfast and dinner!

20151030_223639For human responses to this challenge, click here.

Hazel: our first month

I started this story in Jan. 2014, a month after we got Hazel. I didn’t realize I never published it! So, here it is:

I was a bit worried when Hazel continued to be skittish when we approached her. Sometimes she was playing “hard to get” but other times it was clear that she was just scared. A friend of mine got a new dog about 6 months ago, and she said it took him 2 months to get used to her household of 3 people and 3 other dogs. He wouldn’t bark – just make a barking gesture. But then one day, they heard him bark for the first time.

Although she purrs a lot when we pet her, Hazel doesn’t vocalize the way my other cats did. Maybe she doesn’t feel confident about meowing yet.I  read that Manx cats are known for vocalizing, so maybe that’s not what other cats do.

But Hazel isn’t like any other cat: that’s what makes her delightful and a source of surprise for us!

For example, she likes belly rubs. Most cats I know will turn over to expose their underside when I pet them, so I think they want to have their belly rubbed. But – it happens every time – within a second or two they are trying to bite me! Not Hazel – she really does like it when we pet her belly and will enjoy it for half a minute or so.

Another thing she does is sit by the dining room table when we’re eating and look up at us like a beggar, just like a dog! The difference is that when we offer her a tiny scrap, she sniffs it but doesn’t eat it. After examining it, she resumes the beggar look!

Hazel in her beggar position!

Hazel in her beggar position!

Hazel likes to be near us, just not necessarily with us. She wants to know what we’re doing but doesn’t want us to call the shots. She’s got “cat-titude” as those who know “torties” claim. At night she sleeps near the foot of the bed, but jumps off the bed and leaves after awhile. Eventually she comes back and finds a bent leg to lie next to.

She also runs back and forth a lot more than I remember my other cats doing. They all did some of this – they needed the exercise. But she seemed to be set off by one of us approaching her. In fact, when we read her papers that the shelter gave to us, it was recorded that she HAD been adopted before – last April, but she was returned because she was “too active.” Is this what they meant?

Then a couple of weeks ago I was at a family wedding, and talked to a cousin I rarely see. She’s had many cats in her lifetime, as well as dogs. She currently has two or more cats. I told her about how Hazel runs away from us, then seeks us out, then runs away again.

“Cats, just like dogs, like to play chase,” she said. I had never known that! Most likely, she’s trying to get us to chase her. So I play along with her – sometimes. I tire of this game far sooner than she does. But if she’s still feeling frisky, she’ll play with one of her catnip toys.

She’s starting to vocalize more and more! At the beginning, we never heard her meow. When she wanted something from us, she’d just sit there and stare at us. She still does that but she is now meowing – a very small one – when she wants food or wants us to play chase.

This morning was the first time she meowed to get us to play chase. After breakfast, we were upstairs again and she appeared at the top of the stairs and meowed that small meow of hers. As I made a gesture to approach her, she took off down the stairs and when I got down the stairway, she was hiding under a table! When she saw me, she took off again, this time into the sun room. I couldn’t find her because she had hidden behind a stack of bins, or at least I think that’s where she was.

This, and the fact that she crawled up and slept next to my chest early this morning, make me believe she is really acclimated to the house and trusts us now. She has been spending more time sleeping with us, but that is probably also because the weather is extremely cold here now.

Last night she even let me take a video of her while she was on my lap and Dale was petting her.

Bliss!

Bliss!

She is a source of entertainment and comfort for us and it’s great to have a cat in the house again! It’s been too long!