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Showing posts from August, 2011

Siamese cat phenotype frequency is 1 percent of stray cats

Defining the laboratory animal: IV Symposium, International Committee on ...(1971) says this about the Siamese cat. I quote verbatim and claim fair use as it is educational and I am referring to a small part of the text while promoting the work. ( link to original page ) "Siamese on the other hand have been bred extensively. For instance, the gene frequency of the cat population at large in Paris (France) is 10 percent. That means phenotype frequency is 1 percent of that seen in stray cats. In Bangkok, the gene frequency is only 29 percent, and that is where they come from originally." Some definitions: gene frequency -- the frequency or proportion of genotypes in a population. "Genotype" means "the genetic makeup of a cell, an organism, or an individual". phenotype frequency -- "an organism's observable characteristics or traits".

Did the Siamese derive from a different species of wildcat?

Apparently scientists (Kratochvil and Kratochvil - 1976) produced a research document that suggests that the Siamese cat originated from a different species of wildcat than the other domestic cats except for the Persian. They argue that the domestic cat is derived from the wildcat Felis silvestris lybica (true, the African wildcat and in fact the European wildcat) and that the Siamese derived from another subspecies of " Felis lybica ". This is wrong it seems because they make reference to a subspecies of Felis lybica . There is no subspecies of Felis lybica . The full scientific name is as mentioned Felis silvestris lybica . However the African wildcat is also bundled together as one species with the Asian wildcat ( Felis silvestris ornata ) and it is possible therefore that the Siamese cat derives from the Asian wildcat as the eastern boundary of the range of the Asian wild cat is nearer Siam now Thailand than that of the African or European wildcat. The Siamese cat come

Siamese Cats and France

It appears that the first Siamese cats were introduced to France by the French ambassador to Siam, Auguste Pavie. In 1885 he presented one to the Jardin des plantes (the main botanical garden in France). This has a similar flavor to the way the Siamese cat was imported into England (see Siamese cat history ). Source: The beast in the boudoir: petkeeping in nineteenth-century Paris By Kathleen Kete

Siamese Cat Story

Here is just one Siamese cat story. There are tens of thousands I am sure. It is 1955 or thereabouts. A boy of 2 (Christopher Loss) is slow to learn to speak due to complications at child birth. The family is given a purebred Siamese cat. Things started to change for the boy from that moment onwards. He learned to speak to the cat. The boy would grunt at the cat and the cat would purr in response. There is no doubt that the cat was content to receive the attention and company. Siamese cats are very sociable creatures. Eventually, the boy learned his first word, "kitty". The rest is history. The boy caught up in speech.  The Siamese cat was provided by Dayle Russell who works with disabled children. Dayle said that cats are great with senior people and kids who have special needs and/or are ill. She said that cats can work better than medicine.  Dayle bred pedigree purebred cats and used to give them away where appropriate. The story I have recounted is one example and a very

Altering the Color of Siamese Cats

We know that the pointing of Siamese cats is caused by heat sensitivity. The warmer the environment the paler the color. The extremities of a Siamese cat are cooler hence darker than the central part of the body. Reason For Siamese Cat Pointing To recap: at normal body temperatures the enzymes present in the Siamese cat are unable to produce melanin (a pigment) but at lower temperature the enzymes are able to perform their normal function and produce melanin. At the extremes of the cat the skin is cooler and so those areas have darker fur (pointing). When the kitten in born they are white because they have been in the warmth of their mother's womb. The pointing develops and is then fixed for that cat. On the basis that the paleness of body color and darkness of the pointing becomes fixed at a certain point in the kitten's development, it appears that it is possible to deliberately alter the color of an individual cat by adjusting the ambient temperature under which the cat is r

American vs European Attitude To Siamese Cat

There seems to be a difference is attitude between American (here, I mean North American) Siamese cat breeders and Siamese cat breeders in Europe including of course the UK. How to raise Siamese cats and kittens By Janine Connor refers to the criticism by European breeders and breeders "around the world" of the American breeder's desire to breed Siamese cats with an extreme appearance; meaning very slender and what a well known person in the cat fancy in America has called "rat-like" heads and indeed bodies. If you go to a cat show you can see what she means. I personally prefer the traditional (Applehead) appearance but I respect other people's views and desires. The question I wish to pose is, "Why do American breeders in general prefer the extreme appearance of the modern Siamese cat ?" I can only speculate and I would love some comments but don't expect to get them. We know that America is a consumer society par excellence. The food there

Siamese Cat Binocular Vision

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The Siamese cat is well known for a squint and a kinked tail. Both have been bred out by breeders over the years as they are considered "defects" but they are nonetheless part of this cat breed's heritage. The kinked tail in cat show competition is reason to disqualify the cat as I recall. There are colorful legends regarding the squint that are usually about Siamese cats who defended temples and valuables. The task was arduous and it caused the cats to develop a squint! The question on some people's minds is, "does the Siamese cat squint affect normal vision and particularly binocular vision?" Let's first say that it isn't just Siamese cats that have squints but they have a genetic predisposition to acquiring the squint. The cat below is not a Siamese but has a clear squint. Perhaps she is a Siamese mix (lynx point) Not Siamese but clear squint - Photo by fazen (Flickr) Cats have two eyes to allow them to judge distance and depth. Two eyes giv

Biggest and Smallest Cats

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We have a fascination with extremes. Maybe we are bored. Extremes provide excitement, something different. And so,  the world's largest or biggest cat  is a source of interest for many. People also like nice clean, black and white answers. Unfortunately almost everything in life is gray! People searching for the world's biggest cat are probably searching for one individual cat that is the biggest. That cat is probably a man made liger called Hercules . A liger is a lion to tiger  hybrid . People are also fascinated with creating different cat breeds etc. Hercules weighs about 900 lbs and frankly he looks overweight and flabby but he is certainly enormous; an animal from the age of dinosaurs. But the world's biggest cat could also mean the world's biggest cat species. That would be the  tiger  and particularly the tiger subspecies, the Siberian or Amur tiger. Or perhaps people are looking for the biggest domestic cat breed. That would be a  wildcat hybrid  called a

Hurricane Preparedness for Your Cats

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The underlying ethos and method of what to do for your cats when preparing for a hurricane or any impending disaster is to do for your cats what you do for yourself. If your cat is treated as a second level family member or even disposable (and some people do think like that), your cat will be in danger in a hurricane. I am thinking of hurricane Irene and Florida generally. I am told that Florida has on average four hurricane's per year. Is that right? That must be a factor why not to live in the otherwise sunny and desirable Florida. Preparedness seems to be the key factor. Getting in extra water and cat food in case these are not available for several days would seem common sense. Having a safe place to go to during the hurricane must be a priority. Apparently there are special shelters in Florida for people but not cats! That means setting up some alternative safe shelter to protect your cat during the storm. Perhaps your own shelter or a local veterinarian might have faciliti

Top Cat Breeds for Children

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People like the idea of finding a cat breed that is suitable for children and rightly so. I suppose we are looking at cat breeds that are mellow in character and able to put up with a child's boisterous behavior and perhaps the odd bit of mishandling. Catster.com have a page on the subject and they list one of the qualities of a suitable cat as "not territorial". Sorry Catster but all cats are territorial. It is just a complete misconception to think that a certain cat breed is not territorial. All cats, random bred or purebred, have the same form and fundamental behavior as wildcats. Wildcats are decidedly territorial. Also without wishing to be unnecessarily critical or argumentative, you will not find a lot of difference in character between the cat breeds. This is because cat breeders don't prioritise character and behavior or health. They prioritise appearance. And if they did try and breed a super mellow cat it would not work. If it did it would have happene

Tiger Habitat

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We have intruded upon the tiger's habitat for the past 100 years. We have squeezed the tiger from its habitat. We have given some of it back in the form of tiger reserves where sometimes you will be lucky to see a tiger. Tigers go missing in the reserves and are poached.  The tiger's body  is more valuable dead than alive. Students sometimes visit PoC for information about the wildcats. The tiger is the best known wildcat and its habitat is the most important aspect of all the topics that are associated with the tiger. Without space and a place to live in the tiger cannot exist. Students probably like to look for clear, black and white answers to questions about the tiger's habitat. For example, "What is the tiger habitat?" Answer: Jungle. No, that is incorrect. The tiger is, and has to be, very adaptable as to the kind of environment that it finds acceptable. The tiger has learned to live in the snow over 4,000 feet above sea level in the Himalayan foot

My 19 Year Old Lady Cat

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Nothing special. It is just a photo I took today of my old lady cat. She looks like a lady but a bit confused, which she is. You can see her bent back in the photo. She has had a bent spine for a long time in fact but it is more noticeable in this picture.

High value purebred cats have more behavioral problems than moggies

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Dr. Trevor Turner in this book Veterinary Notes For Cat Owners says that "owners" of cats are more likely to see him for cat behavior problems if the cat is a high value purebred cat rather then a random bred cat. Dr. Turner works or worked in the UK. The book was published in 1994. At that time he says that 8 per cent of British cats were purebred cats of recognised breeds. However, 44 per cent of the cats seen by him for behavioral problems were cats of a cat breed. 14 per cent were "first cross strains" and 42 per cent were moggies both long and short haired cats. Of the 8 per cent cats that were purebreds, 24% were Siamese cats . The large majority of these cats were seen for spraying indoors . 20% were Burmese cats . The biggest behavioral problem for Burmese cats was aggression towards other cats in the house (multi-cat households) and cats outside is allowed outside. 13% of the purebred cats seen were Abyssinians. The behavioral problem for Abyssinians wa

The Shocking Truth About The Feline Herpes Virus

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In the USA, the feline herpes virus (FHV) is present in 80% of breeding catteries according to a cat breeder who left a comment on this page:  Feline herpes running rapid in catteries across U.S.??  Her comment is sensible and believable and is in support of other comments on that page. She says that, "It would be almost impossible for me to purchase a high end titled show cat that hasn't been exposed to Feline Herpes virus....". A vet advised another American visitor to the page that 70 to 90% of domestic cats have the feline herpes virus. Obviously shelters are just as likely to have a similar rate of infection, perhaps even higher. I would expect similar problems in other countries, incidentally, but refer to the USA here because I have the information from American visitors to this site - thank you for it by the way. This information is useful because people ask, " How common is feline herpes? ". Answer: very common. Personally, I find the informatio

Housing Conditions Affect Domestic Cat Interaction

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Housing conditions affect the way the domestic cat interacts with his or her human caretaker(s): When there is one or two people in the home cats are more interactive and affectionate with their human companions compared to households with more than two people. When there is only one cat in the home the cat will spend more time interacting with the human caretaker than cats do in multi-cat households. Full-time indoor cats are more interactive with the caretaker/guardian but exchange scent (head butting and body rubbing) less than do indoor/outdoor cats. The extra scent exchange of outdoor cats is a sign of a need to greet having left the home and to re-mark indoor territory to ensure that it is friendly. A person initiating contact with a domestic cat will in general receive a reaction from the cat that is dependent on the age and sex of the person. A sitting adult women is more likely to elicit an interaction with a cat than a male child approaching directly. This is probab

Borneo Bay Cat Early Years

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The Bay Cat is the "world's least known felid". This mysterious wild cat is found solely on the island of Borneo. This wildcat is known from "about twelve specimens". You can see how rare and elusive this cat is. The quotes are from Wild Cats Of The World . Apparently there is a Bay Cat in the British museum. It was put there in 1856 and it was collected by Alfred Russel Wallace.  This stuffed Bay cat is listed as coming from Sarawack - that was the sum of the information available at that time. Sarawak is part of the island of Borneo. Wallace was "based in the town of Sarawak now known as Kuching". After moving about 55 kilometres east of Kuching he found the Bay cat. There was virgin forest there. He stayed there for 9 months. The current (at the time of this post) range or distribution of the Bay Cat is shown on the map below: Map Channels: free mapping tools The specimen of Bay Cat that Wallace had imported from Borneo was in poor conditi

Cat Nutritional Disorders

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It is possible for cat nutritional disorders to affect the central nervous system: Low blood sugar - hypoglycemia - can lead to a "depressed level of consciousness" and seizures, possibly a coma. An overdose of insulin is one cause. See Feline Diabetes . Hypocalcemia - this means low blood calcium. The symptoms are like those described above. Thiamin deficiency - seizures and "when lifted up, cats often flex their necks, dropping chin to chest.." Reference: Cat Owner's Home Veterinary Guide . See Symptoms of Feline Diabetes . From Cat Nutritional Disorders to Home Page

Wild Cat Health Problems and Illnesses

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I am talking about "genuine" wildcats not feral cats. We more or less know that feral cats suffer from the same illnesses as domestic cats but more often and they go untreated and so often kill the cat and make their lives very miserable. But what of the genuine wildcats, cats such as the cheetah, the lion and for example the serval? There is nothing in the index of the best book on wild cats anywhere (see advert) about wildcat health problems and illnesses! Surprising. There is nothing on the internet that sits up and says, here is a list. I cannot find anything on a fairly decent search. The truth is we don't know. In fact we know relatively little about the wildcats except that our presence on the planet is killing them off and pushing them out. See also: Cat Colony Diseases From Wild Cat Health Problems and Illnesses to Home Page

Cat Dry Skin

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Three all natural treatments for cat dry skin are listed on this page. First though, I think people are making a presumption that their cat has dry skin because he or she is constantly scratching themselves. This is usually around the shoulders, neck and face (forehead near the ears). From personal experience I would not make that presumption. The foremost book on cat health does not refer to "dry skin" it its index. Sure, there are countless skin conditions that can cause itching and scratching but they are not cat dry skin problems and this post is about cat dry skin! I would deal with the obvious first. Check out your cat for fleas, and mites. If you don't have one buy a good flea comb (32 teeth to the inch) and have a good comb - of your cat! If you don't see a flea keep trying. Try all over the chin, face above the eyes, behind the ears, over the shoulders, down the back and at the base of the tail and do it very thoroughly. Take your time. Fleas can be s

Caring for a Siamese Cat

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Photo by anthrovik All the usual things should be in place for caring for a Siamese cat. What I mean is that a Siamese cat has the same basic requirements regarding care as any other cat, moggie or purebred - obviously. There is perhaps one additional factor: the Siamese is an interactive cat that likes to have close contact with his or her human caretaker/guardian. They are vocal and like to be heard! That means being around more than usual. A retired couple are probably ideal human companions. Or people over aged 55. Sorry if that sounds ageist. I have a page on how to avoid cat behavior problems, which is really about how to approach caring for a domestic cat. Click on this link to see it . It is a PDF file. It will load and look different to a standard web page.

Siamese Cat Allergy Information

I am not sure I have addressed this specific topic before so I'll do it again if I have! I have read a lot about hypoallergenic cat breeds and there is nothing on the internet that supports the notion that Siamese cats are hypoallergenic. Hypoallergenic means a lessened reaction by us to the cat allergen Fel D1 protein in the cat's saliva. I have a page on this subject that you might like to visit: Hypoallergenic Cat Breeds .

Range of Siamese Cat Points

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Here is a picture by Flickr photographer Chris Isherwood of his Siamese cats and an Oriental Shorthair (an associated cat breed). I have guessed (incorrectly on two occasions!) what type of pointing the cats have: Siamese cat types and one Oriental Shorthair One aspect of the cats that you can see clearly is the smooth single coat that lies close to the skin. This is typical of Siamese cats. It is in complete contrast to the shaggy long coat of the Maine Coon and the dense tight coat of the British Shorthair. Someone can leave me a comment to correct me! Go on, I dare you.

Famous Siamese Cats

This is a list of famous Siamese cats from Wikipedia. I have changed the links. Real: Jason - Seal-point on BBC TV's Blue Peter  Lalage, owned by the writer Anthony Burgess, taken by him to Malaya. After a long life she died in Kota Bharu, just across the border from Siam  Marcus, briefly owned by James Dean, was a gift from Elizabeth Taylor. Marcus was named after James Dean's uncle, Marcus Winslow, who along with his wife took care of Dean after his mother died.  Misty Malarky Ying Yang, pet of Amy Carter, daughter of US President Jimmy Carter  Nemo, travelling companion of British Prime Minister Harold Wilson  Shan Shein - White House cat owned by Gerald Ford's daughter, Susan.  Fictional: Ayesha, Erik's cat from Susan Kay's novel Phantom  Bimbo, a Siamese kitten in Enid Blyton's Bimbo and Topsy  Lumpy and Non-Lumpy, the cats from The Chronicles of Gonorrhea  In Garfield: The Movie, Nermal is a Siamese cat, unlike in the comics where he'

Blue British Shorthair Show Cat

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Yep..another blue British Shorthair at a cat show it seems to me. He looks so smooth. His coat is crackling with crispness! The coat of the British Shorthair should be dense and the best cat coat of all to stroke. Blue Brit SH - Photo quatre mains on Flickr

Lilac Pointed British Shorthair

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Lionel in Snow - British Shorthair cat (white with lilac points) , a photo by steviewonderous on Flickr. His name is Lionel and he is a lilac pointed British Shorthair cat. He looks magnificent in the snow. Although the British Shorthair is well known for its blue (grey) coat the cat associations allow a wide range of coat types and pointing is one of them. I find that there is a very fine differences sometimes between blue pointing and lilac pointed. Lionel looks like he has blue pointing!

Silver Classic Tabby British Shorthair Kitten

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I think I have shown a picture of this really nice looking cat before. This time the coat is more visible. This is a classic or blotched (as opposed to a mackerel - striped) tabby coat. The background is silver. Silver tabby British Shorthair - Photo by warper See a page with lots of pictures and explanations on the tabby cat coat .

Balinese Cat: A Longhaired Siamese Cat

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The title pretty much says it all. The country Bali has nothing to do with the cat. It is just a nice name. The CFA treats this cat breed as a Siamese cat. This tells you that from cat association to cat association there are differences in regards to definitions which causes confusion amongst the public. Cat fanciers don't mind as they do it for themselves! Seal Pointed Balinese cat - Photo copyright Helmi Flick The photo on this page is protected by copyright ©. Violations of copyright are reported to Google.com (DMCA). The Balinese cat can be a traditional cat or a modern contemporary cat. The former is more cobby and normal while the latter is slender and abnormal - provocative stuff. See cat body types for more on that. Read about Balinese cat history and the Balinese Cat in more detail. The Balinese cat is shown in the pointed category, in all divisions.

Javanese Cat another relative of the Siamese

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The Siamese cat has an extended family. There are several cat breeds that could almost be Siamese cats but are not treated as such by some cat associations; the CFA being one such association. One breed of cat that is closely related is the Javanese. In the United States, it is a longhaired modern Siamese cat (called the Balinese cat by some associations) with non-standard pointing. It is sometimes described as an Oriental Longhair that is pointed. The Oriental Shorthair is another related cat. The Javanese is a very elegant cat with a wonderful plumed tail. Please remember that the body conformation of the cat in the Helmi picture is oriental meaning slender. This is the body of what I call a Modern Siamese. There are traditional cats that are more normal in conformation. Javanese cat photo - "4Ever"- copyright Helmi Flick The photo on this page is protected by copyright ©. Violations of copyright are reported to Google.com (DMCA). The non-traditional points are: cream lyn

Oriental Shorthair: Cousin of Modern Siamese

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The Oriental Shorthair in the USA is a close relative of the modern, oriental body shaped Siamese cat. It is has the same slender body shape but under cat association breed standards breeders are not confined to color pointing and certain colors. It seems that anything goes in respect of the coat color and pattern. You just keep the "canvas" (the body) the same! I am talking like a cat breeder/fancier now. Click on this link to see and read about the Oriental Shorthair cat . And see two more articles that refer to the Oriental Shorthair. Chocolate self Oriental Shorthair kitten - Photo by  demented-pixie

Large Blue British Shorthair Cat

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This is a great picture of a blue British Shorthair cat because the cat is gorgeous and a blue British Shorthair show cat and secondly the photo allows us to scale this cat because he is being held by a person. Large Blue British Shorthair Cat - Photo by Tomi Tapio This is a large Brit SH. Not all Brit SHs are this large. This leads me to the subject of how difficult it can be to provide information on the weights and sizes of cat breeds. I have a page on that subject: Largest Domestic Cat Breed , but at least one person has challenged my information. The truth is that there will be breeders who breed large versions of a breed and in some countries the size might be smaller and there are differences between individual cats naturally. Then there is the natural difference between male and female cats. It becomes complicated. All I know is that this boy is big and beautiful.

British Shorthair Characteristics

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Here are just three physical characteristics as specified by the CFA breed standard relating to the head area as set against a show cat who is in a cage sitting in his litter for emotional comfort (smells like him). British Shorthair breed standard nose, head and eyes - Photo: by Daisyree Bakker

SureFlap

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The SureFlap is a cat flap (sometimes called a "cat door" in the USA) that I have been thinking about. As you might know I have two cats, one very old and one with three legs - I am a kind of cat nurse! I love it though. They both like to go out into the garden. They never travel more than about 20 yards from the cat flap. I am confident that they are safe. But, the cat flap is an open invitation to stray cats and what I call time share cats. Time share cats are cats who like to spend time at various homes in the neighborhood. This is probably because they are not completely satisfied with their actually home! That can be for one of several reasons. The most common is because the person is not there much and there is a shortage of food or the food is poor and yours is better. I have had a few time share cats and one is affecting my quality of life. I call him Marty and he wears a bell. He comes in late in the evening after I have put down night food for my cats. He wa

Siamese Cats Wool Chewing

A condition called Pica (eating non-nutritional items) and which includes wool sucking is said to be more prevalent in Siamese and Burmese cats. Read more about Pica .

Siamese Cat Genetic Anomalies

I have an extensive page on genetic diseases in purebred cats. But on this page I would like to refer to page 91 of The Cat, Its Behavior, Nutrition and Health where it mentions that the Siamese cat as a cat breed, has the following "associated disorders": Hyperesthesia syndrome - rolling skin disease and possible seizures and self mutilation. Intestinal adenocarcinomas: mammary tumors - forms of cancer, unusually high in Siamese. Hydrocephalus - excessive spinal fluid accumulation - autosomal recessive gene causes it. Congenital heart defects  - more common in Siamese than other breeds. See more at Siamese Cat Health Problems .

Siamese Cats and Feline Diabetes

Linda P. Case in her book The Cat, Its Behavior, Nutrition and Health   says on page 350 that "there is some evidence that Siamese and Burmese cats might be at a higher risk for diabetes..." She qualifies that by saying this figures might be distorted by the popularity of the Siamese cat and therefore more Siamese being treated for the disease.

When Do You Euthanize Your Cat?

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I was at the veterinary clinic again the other day. My  geriatric  lady cat (Binnie) had cystitis. I can diagnose  cystitis . I think it was caused by not feeding her plain microwaved fish plus added water. The fishy soup that I usually give her helps to keep her urinary tract flushed out, which helps to stop the formation of bacteria. I had stopped buying fish because I couldn't get it online anymore from my usual supplier - the oceans are being fished out. Anyway we are fixing the cystitis (antibiotics and fishy soup!). Binnie is very thin these days and has a lump inside her the size of an orange, I am told. She must be about 19-20 years of age but I am not sure because I rescued her off the street 18 years ago. I mentioned to the vet that I think about her dying and that it upsets me. I am constantly waiting for it, I said. She made the point that few cats just die at home. Most get to a stage with their  health  where the quality of their life prompts us to consider eu

Siamese Cat Sapphire Blue Eyes

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The Siamese cat should have "brilliant sapphire blue", eyes (Gloria Stephens). Here is a nice picture by Flickr photographer by thelittleone417 of those sapphire blue eyes. I don't know if this cat is purebred or not but the eyes are pretty damn good:

Flame Point Siamese Cat Sabrina

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Sabrina 1 , a photo by ltshears on Flickr. A really nice looking, pretty, female, flame pointed Siamese cat. The flame point (red or orange pointing) is an interesting looking cat and people are attracted to this appearance. I have another page on the Flame Point Siamese cat . They are called "red point" as well. The eyes should be a brilliant sapphire blue. The Siamese cat is recognised in the pointed category of cat associations, in all divisions, in all pointed colors but at the CFA only the classic colors are recognised.

Admire Our Cat's Claws

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I know a lot of people might think me a bit mad but I like the cat's claw. I admire it and I actually play around with my cat's claws sometimes! People who are a little fearful (or plain scared) of cat's claws will find my attitude strange. All the members of the Carnivora have claws. They are meant to be sharp to make them effective in catching and holding prey. During prey capture, the claws are extended from their relaxed and retracted position, and dug into the skin of the prey. This enables the cat to cling on to the animal. The toes of the cat can then be closed in the same way that we close our hands around an object. This has the effect of driving the claws further into the prey. I know this sounds a bit gruesome but it is natural. Once the claws are well dug in, escape for the animal is very difficult. Claws also assist in grooming and scooping up water (some cats do this), kneading, climbing and stabilizing the cat when jumping to a new position. Cats cl

Seal Point Siamese Cat in Thailand

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This is an interesting photo of a Siamese cat in Siam - well it is called Thailand now but does this cat give us a clue as to what the original Siamese cat looked like before being picked up by the English cat fancy in the late 1800s. The picture was taken where the marker in this map indicates: View Larger Map This is the photo: Seal Point Siamese Temple Cat in Thailand You can see that this cat is not oriental in shape but mid range moggie shape ( semi-cobby ) and a little fat actually! Cat breeders in the USA justify breeding very slender cats on the basis that the shape is what the Siamese cat was like in Thailand - rubbish obviously. Or if they don't try and justify selective breeding in that way they are clearly breeding cats that are unnatural and unpopular with the public. You can see the tabby banding on the forelegs. This cat has, it seems, an element of tabby pointing about him (lynx points).

Siamese Cats and Film Stars

Because the Siamese cat was considered very exotic and special for the first 70 years of its life as a cat breed it is not surprising that a number of film stars kept Siamese cats or a Siamese cat. You can read about them on this page . All of the film stars are from a bygone era as is the exotic nature of the Siamese cat. It is now a popular mainstream cat breed. It is the wildcat hybrids , particularly the first filials that have taken over the role of exotic cat.
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Pyewacket is the Siamese cat witch's familiar in the film Bell, Book and Candle. It is a fine film starring Kim Novak and Jimmy Stewart. Pyewacket is a name for a witch's cat going back to the time of witches: I have a page on the film Bell, Book and Candle .

Wikipedia is wrong in the first sentence on the Siamese cat

Wikipedia's first sentence on the Siamese cat is: "The Siamese is one of the first distinctly recognized breeds of Oriental cat." The word "oriental' in this instance means the slender body shape that cat fanciers describe as oriental. However, the Siamese cat is not meant to be oriental in shape . The cat breeders took it upon themselves to decide that the Siamese cat is meant to be slender but it is not. They selectively bred the Siamese over 50 years since the the mid-1900s to change the cat's appearance from a normal looking cat to one that is unnaturally slender. The oriental shape does not occur naturally anywhere. The original Siamese cats were not slender but of normal appearance or to use cat fancy language "semi-cobby" in body shape. So the Wikipedia authors have it wrong in the first sentence. They are following the pack. It was probably written by an American Siamese cat breeder, probably a CFA affiliated Siamese cat breeder. You cannot

Time for a Cat Association in India

I have just posted two articles about purebred cats for sale in India - here is one . They both relate to Siamese cats of course although Persians and Russian Blues are available and more perhaps. It is time to create a new Indian cat association to register these cats and record their pedigree to make them formally purebred cats. There is one of two things to do. Either start a new cat association in India or ask TICA - The International Cat Association - to open a branch in India. The Expanding Purebred Cat MarketPlace

Glittered Bengal Cat

Glitter is something cat breeders seek when breeding the Bengal cat. It is rather mystical it seems to me! I discuss this interesting subject on this page: Bengal Cat Coat Glitter . Essentially it is what it sounds it should be. The effect is caused by mica, a silicate crystal, in the tip of the hair shaft, apparently.

Bengal Cat History

Bengal cat history is about the beginnings of this breed of cat and the development thereafter. The development of the breed will be more or less the same as any breed of cat: selective breeding to refine and create an appearance that appeals while trying to preserve good health. The beginnings by Jean Mill are unique to the Bengal cat, of course. I discuss these topics on this page . Or you can go direct to Bengal Cat Origins - I am critical! What else?

Bengal Cat Anesthesia and Bengal Cat and Ketamine

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Well, it is hard to find specific information about the dangers of anesthetics to Bengal cats in particular. Anesthesia is dangerous to all animals including people. There is a chance that the cat will die during anesthesia. I heard while talking at a vets that 1% of cats die under general anesthetic. Bengal cat photo by Helmi Flick with her permission Please balance the pros and cons before agreeing to have your cat anesthetised for any operation. Dental cleaning comes to mind. The Cat Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook does not give a warning about Bengal cats under anesthetic. Neither does it mention Ketamine in relation to Bengal cats. However this excellent book states that thin cats without extra weight or fat should be accomodated in terms of the amount of drug used because they have an increased sensitivity. Bengal cats are firm and fit without fat, usually. This might be a factor. A visitor to my site says that Ketamine should not be administered to Bengal cats. Vets sh

Bengal Cat Magazine

There is one Bengal cat magazine that is probably the best known. It might even be the only Bengal cat magazine. The publishers are USA located. It is called "Bengals Illustrated". It is published four times yearly (once every three months). It comes in paper version and digital version (CD rom). Prices are reasonable and the photos and articles are outstanding. It is published by the International Bengal Cat Connection. Visit their website if you wish. This is the link  (shows back issues).

Genetically Engineered Bengal Cat

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Some people think that the Bengal cat is "genetically engineered" because they search for information about this subject. This cat breed is not genetically engineered on the standard definition of that phrase. "Genetic engineering" could be defined as "the direct human manipulation of an organism's genome using modern DNA technology". Photo: Helmi Flick. The Bengal cat is a simple hybrid. There are many breeds of cat that are hybrids. Most are domestic cat to domestic cat matings such as the Burmilla . These are breeds created by mating a cat of one breed with a cat of another breed. Cat breeds though are all one species of cat (the domestic cat - felis catus). There are some wild cat to domestic cat matings that occur naturally. The wildcat hybrids such as the Bengal and Savannah (and Safari ) are deliberate matings of wildcat with domestic cat, however. This though is not genetic engineering.

Marble Bengal Cat

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Window to my Desk , a photo by littleREDelf on Flickr. Here is a nice photograph of a marbled (or marble) Bengal cat. Nice clean photo and a beautiful cat. The cat looks young in this photograph.