Showing posts from January, 2012

Cat White Spotting Gene

The cat white spotting gene is also called the piebald gene and it is not limited to cats i.e. it is the "white spotting gene". The piebald horse or painted horse is perhaps the classic example of its effect. These are bicolor horses and the bicolor cat is a very well known cat. The calico cat also carries the white spotting gene. The white spotting gene works with any color so you will see black and white cats, tuxedo cats, calico cats (white, orange and black), tabby and white cats, grey and white cats etc. All of then carry the white spotting gene. Solid and white cats are bicolor. The amount of white fur is very variable. The tuxedo black and white cat has a limited amount of white fur on the chest and lower limbs, while the Turkish Van is almost all white with the classic inverted "V" on the forehead and around the ears and a pigmented tail. Sarah Hartwell kindly licensed her diagram of the various levels of expression of the piebald white spotting ge

Denver Animal Shelters

Here are some (all?) Denver animal shelters and associated organizations mapped. I hope this proves useful and accurate. Please tell me if there are problems. You can see a map containing almost 4,000 USA animal rescue organisations on this page . If you click on the flags you'll see some details. This map is a Google Beta product so please be patient if something goes wrong.

Google Plus One under fire already

26th Jan 2012  - Europeans will be given the right to delete information that has been collected by Google under proposed legislation. This was announced by the European Commission on 25th Jan 2012. We are told that Google and Facebook will be subject to tight limits on the amount and kind of information that they can hold on their members. The legislation is set to come into law in about 2 years time provided of course that it is passed by the European Parliament after being ratified by member states. It makes sense though because there is no regulation of the internet or hardly any. This allows the biggest internet sites to do as they please to their advantage. This worries ordinary people and chimes with the recent Occupancy protests across Europe and America The existence and success of Google Plus One (+1) depends on the collection of personal information, the likes and dislikes, of individuals who go online. This news must cast doubt on the long term viability of Google'

Which country loves pets the most?

I'll tell you the answer on this page. First, I don't really like the word "pet" but have used it in the title because that is what the general public are more likely to search for rather than "which country loves cats the most?". My research comes from Google's excellent statistics in relation to this website, which is mainly about cats. So, I'll tell you which country, or more accurately, the people of which country are most interested in the domestic cat. As people worldwide like cats and dogs in about equal measure the figures should also apply to dogs and therefore pets generally. One factor that might bend the figures is language. This site is in English and some countries speak English as their first language. However Google translation is pretty good these days. If we take a sample size of say 100 people from across the world who come to this website, 67 of them would be from the United States of America. And about 15 of the people would

Declawed Cougar

This is a heartbreaking video of a declawed cougar. His name is Kona. He is crippled by the declawing. I can't watch it except for the first seconds. What can you say? To think a person did this to this beautiful animal. Cougars are one of the world's greatest jumpers. Kona can barely walk! It is a simple case of what I call "the human condition": ignorance compounded by arrogance. It is this that results in what you see in this tragic video. And, you know, there are an estimated 2,000 or more captive cougars in Florida and most are declawed. Because people like to keep a cougar as a "pet". Cougars are not meant to be pets. I guess they see a nice cougar cub that has been stolen from their mother in the wild and the new owner's first thought is "let's declaw". Horrendous isn't it?. Then the cub becomes an adult and their second thought is, "let's get rid of it". These people don't think.

Cat Breeds That Stay Small

There is only one cat breed that stays relatively small as an adult: the Singapura . That is under normal conditions. However, any breeder can, through selective breeding, breed small cats or big cats or cats with certain types and colors of coat. The popular teacup or miniature cats are not cats of a certain cat breed. They usually look like miniature chinchilla traditional Persians, however. Breeders of purebred cats are limited to what they can do because there is a breed standard to follow. This is a document that sets out guidelines as to what the cat should look like. Behavior is also referred to occasionally. I think that you might find that the concept of miniature cats - adult cats that look like kittens - is frowned upon my some people in the cat fancy because it is unnatural and may be unhealthy. However, not all the breeding practices of purebred cats are healthy. It could be argued that breeders of mainstream purebred cats don't have a right to be critical of

Picture of Cat Hissing

This is a picture of a cat hissing. It has to be, judging from the demeanor of the cat. The photographer does not say that the cat is hissing, however. This is probably one of the best photographs of a cat taking up an aggressive stance that I have seen. Photo by Hannibal Poenaru We know that hissing is intended to deter or see off an aggressor and it is a defensive measure. It is intended to mimic the snake's hiss . This has evolved over eons. It appears that animals recognise that the snake is dangerous otherwise there would be no point in mimicking the snake. You can see the ears starting to flatten too. This is to protect them in an ensuing fight. Cats ears get damaged in fights . This particular cat could be a purebred. She looks a bit Burmese or Burmilla and she looks clean and cared for indicating a house cat rather than a feral or stray cat. The teeth and gums are in good condition. She is probably quite young. The eyes sparkle. The picture was taken in France

Desensitising the baby to the cat allergen!

You'll enjoy this picture of a baby using the family cat as a pillow. The cat is a brown/gray mackerel tabby and the child is Caucasian! I read somewhere that it is healthy for a child to be exposed to allergens as it helps to desensitize the person. It provides some protection in later life. And there is no doubt that when this child grows up he or she will like to keep a cat. Which brings me to the next point. It is during childhood that we can learn to love cats or be frightened of them. A bad experience or bad teaching from parents can leave the child with a fear of cats . A lot of people are frightened of cats to varying degrees. This is usually due to a lack of understanding or knowledge about the domestic cat. Once the person gets to know and relate to a cat the perceptions change for the better. The fear of cats can result in an abuse of cats .

Hurlingham Club, London, England

Hurlingham Club, London, England , a photo by broadsurf on Flickr. Nothing much to do with cats but I go here once a week normally on the invitation of a friend and we play scrabble. It is a bit unreal for me but makes a nice break from reality. It is very English. If you live in Arizona or the mid-west of the USA this is almost the opposite! It would be wonderland for cats though. The whole house and grounds are enormous and worth hundreds of millions of pounds but at one time a medical doctor lived here. It was his home. They were different times although today (2012) doctors get very well paid in the UK! They couldn't afford this though.

Do foxes attack cats?

Foxes don't attack the domestic cat, normally. This comes from my personal experience and from information on the internet. It actually makes sense too. I am incidentally, writing about British foxes in Britain. The British fox, in this instance an urban fox, is the size of a medium-small sized dog. My friendly fox getting up close to me. Photo by Michael at PoC He is a very handsome fox. I look after him in a minor way. I put out cat food that my cat does not finish. This is sensible recycling, I think. There is no waste. Although I don't think a fox should eat too much cat food as it is probably too rich. I think this fox is no longer frightened of me. Although he is very cautious but as you can see he approaches to within a foot of my camera! He actually looks pretty fit. Most foxes around here die of a kind of mange that strips off their fur and they die of hypothermia I believe. The issue of whether a British fox would attack a domestic cat probably comes down

Three Legged Cat Picture

This is another picture of my three legged cat, Charlie. It is nothing particularly special except that he is very good at reaching up and grabbing objects because he likes to get into the meerkat position. You can see him raised up onto two legs grabbing some string I am dangling in front of him with his claws nicely out. Love those claws. Of course one reason why the picture looks a bit strange at first glance is because he has no right foreleg. Being a black cat this is not immediately apparent.

Picture of Beautiful Mountain Lion

This is a camera trap photo of a puma. The photo has been refined a bit by me. For some people it will be just another mountain lion picture but I think it is a bit special. Camera trap photo by USFWS Headquarters Firstly, it is "real". This is a wild mountain lion going about his business. I think that adds credibility to a photo over the well composed captive cat photos. Secondly, you get a very nice sense of the grace and power of the mountain lion. Such a beautiful cat and so sad, for me, that it is still hunted (with dogs). The mountain lion is a very classy jumper, one of the best amongst all the wildcats. You can see where that comes from in the muscular hind quarters. One day, hopefully before it is extirpated (totally destroyed) in the wild, people will stop shooting at the puma for fun. I know that sentence will annoy the hunters and shooters. However, it is uncivilised to shoot a wild animal for pleasure. We have moved on. Well some of us have. See mou

Cat Song

You can dance to this one. Debbie is cute. I liked it, which may surprise people. I didn't like the cats dressed up though. But I liked the song and Debbie crying when she says it. I say, "says it" because I think she is talking and some software converts that to a song. The software is called "Songify it" or is it a YouTube video creator - don't know and don't care. I am an innocent when it comes to this sort of thing. Debbie really likes cats. She gets emotional about them which I like. It makes life harder though because there are millions of unwanted cats.

Why did the crow provoke the cats?

This is a strange video in which a crow provokes and agitates two cats to the point where they fight each other. There is no doubt that the cats were into a territorial dispute anyway. But it seems to me that the crow pushes them both into fighting sooner and more viciously. These cats certainly fought hard and risked serious injury. The black cat is bigger and won the fight. We don't know what happened to the red cat. He may have been hurt. An animal only does something if it is to his or her advantage. So what advantage is there in having two cats fight over territory? I can think of only one right now having just seen the video. Cats attack birds as a prey item, as food. If there are two cats in one area the crow has two predators to deal with. If they fight each other, one cat wins and the other leaves the territory leaving one predator for the crow. The crow has an easier life on the assumption that he stays in the area which might be the case as he probably has a so

Declawing Cats In The UK

Although declawing of domestic cats has never been on the agenda in the UK (even before the recent introduction of the Animal Welfare Act 2006), the declawing of wildcats in zoos in the UK seems to have been carried out on occasion. I am referring to the declawing of lions and tigers at a British big cat sanctuary, Kamo's Zion Wildlife Gardens. This happened some time ago now; sometime, in fact, between 2000 and 2008. The person in charge of the park during that time was Craig Busch. It seems that he was responsible for ordering the declawing operations. The declawing resulted in two lions being injured because they could not grip on slippery surfaces and in England in the winter there will be a lot of slippery surfaces. These lions had fallen off boxes onto hard surfaced it appears. Also the declawing operation had left some cats in obvious discomfort - their gait was incorrect putting strain in other parts of their body - and the others, although looking OK, were assessed a

Cat Breed Selector

Click on the link to find solutions to selecting the cat breed that suits you and your lifestyle. This is a cat breed selector using Google presentation software. Cat breeds are nearly always presented individual and it is difficult to group cat breeds in categories as the information is not in one place. Now it is:

Picture of Alien Cat

Alien Cat This is a cat from another planet that walks on two legs, has alien eyes and is albino white! I'll let you try and figure what is going on....Enjoy.

Angry cat or irritated cat?

Here is a little animated photo that shows a cat biting a person's hand. What do you think? The picture comes from a website in which the person says that this is an angry cat. Just because a cat bites it does not mean that the cat is angry. The cat might be angry but often bites are in play or as a message. A gentle bite like this one is more likely to be a form of communication. I sense that the cat is a little irritated by the person's hand. The person may have deliberately provoked the cat's reaction for the camera. Cats that are a bit unhappy and/or irritated with a situation will tell you by biting in this way. It is about one third the normal strength. When an adult cat bites with genuine anger and aggression you'll know about it. It will really hurt. Clearly this person is not hurt. Alternatively, play involving gentle biting can turn to stronger biting as the cat becomes wound up. Note : I have published this picture believing it is in the public d

Picture of ginger tabby cat looking anxious in water

In one way I love the face of this cat but I am also worried for this cat. He or she looks very anxious. I don't know how she got into water. Was she put in it? It almost looks way because I don't think she would get in for the fun of it. Some cats don't mind water. Some even like it ( Savannah cat breed for example). But the majority of random bred cats don't really like water. This cat is in that bracket. That said, all cats are decent swimmers. Some are excellent ( tiger for example). It is a bit of a myth that the Turkish Van likes to go for a swim.

New Google Plus One search hurts small websites

Jan 17th 2012: This is not a moan, just a cold fact. I don't really care that much. But it is important. Recently Google decided to prioritize branded websites. In effect that means big websites. What I call the independents, individuals who build websites, were pushed back. That hurt millions of smaller websites. Google Plus One was failing (+1 button). No one used it. It didn't work properly either on websites. So, they decided to force people to use it. Google is the major search engine. A couple of days ago they attached Google Plus One to their search results. The idea is to encourage people to use Plus One. You can turn it off but people won't in practice. This will further erode traffic to the independents. Google are changing the face of the internet and they can do this because it is unregulated. Google regulate it. They are scared of Facebook and have decided that they have to step out of their own rules to force people to use Google Plus One as a social netwo

Goa Mining Destroying Rainforest

I am afraid China is at it again in league with corrupt officials in Goa. Their wealth and insatiable demand for iron ore that is required for their manufacturing industry is resulting in corruption in Goa which in turn leads to mining in prohited areas of rainforest and the forced eviction of homeowners. The forests of Goa are within the distribution of the leopard cat, a small wildcat that is the wild cat ancestor of the very popular Bengal domestic cat. Mining is an example of a major threat to forests. Another similar example is the forests of sub-Saharan Africa where they are being cleared not for mining but palm oil plantations. The forest of sub-Saharan Africa is the home of the African golden cat. There you have it. I guess it is nothing new to report as this sort of thing happens all the time especially where there is corruption in government. As mentioned it is not just wildlife that is losing its habitat and home, people are too. They are being threatened with rape and

Strange Cat Show Picture 1950s

Cat cruelty? This cat fancier would probably be stopped and questioned about the possibility of being charged with animal cruelty under modern laws if it happened today (2012)! I have never seen a person carry around a cat, purebred or not, like this - unless the cat is dead or it's China - sorry China but I have seen a cat being taken to market to be killed for meat being carried like this. The picture from Life Magazine 1 is of a Siamese cat breeder (I presume) carrying his Siamese show cats to the show in 1952. It is interesting on two counts. J.W. Blackford carries his Siamese cats to show Los Angeles cat 1952 (photographer unknown) Are you as surprised as me to see this? I don't think it is as bad as it looks but it is not good particularly from a breeder or at least someone who knows cats and is heavily involved in cats. It is not recommended for plainly obvious reasons to carry a cat like this. It could cause injury. These are show cats, purebred cats that

Declawed Lion?

This is a video of a lion pawing vigorously at a perspex window to try at get at a child, it seems to me. The interesting thing is this: there is no sound of claw against perspex. It is just the paw pads. Do they declaw lions in zoos like this? Is this lion declawed or is it me being too suspicious?

The Crazy Human-Cat Dichotomy

This really annoys me. On the one hand we have millions of funny cat videos. We have millions of funny cat cheeseburger pictures (pictures of cats with funny captions). Yet on the other hand we have millions of cats deliberately killed at cat shelters. We have millions of miserable, short-lived feral cats that should have been domestic cats. We really don't do it right, do we? We cannot have fun looking at cats doing what we consider to be crazy things and at the same to kill them in the millions. We shoot them in the USA and skin them alive in Asia. Funny cat videos are an abuse on that basis. If we had everything in order, no abandoned cats, no cats being killed at shelters, no abuse, no shelters in fact, then we would have a right to laugh at cats on a YouTube video. Until then we haven't. And Google are accessories to this ugly fact because their highly paid Ph.D. scientists who work at Google in their thousands decide what websites should be listed in a Google search a

When do kittens open their eyes?

ANSWER: Kittens open there eyes at seven to ten days normally. It can occur at 2 days of age and as late as 16 days of age. Genetic and environmental factors affect the time when a kitten's eyes open. These include: gender of the kitten; parenting; exposure to light; age of mother at the time of giving birth (parturition).

How to reduce cat allergies

How to reduce cat allergies? Here are ten tips: Male cats should be neutered. Male and female cats that are neutered/spayed have similar levels of Fel D1 allergen but unneutered males are the worst. Thinking long term, if a child is exposed to a domestic cat he or she has a lesser chance of being allergic to cats when older. There are resistant to it. Conversely adult people who are first time cat caretakers are less resistant (half as resistant) especially people with allergies to other substances 1 . Cat avoidance measures should be taken. This is rather self-defeating though. Keeping your cat out of the bedroom at night helps. You can more or less ignore stories of certain cat breeds being hypoallergenic . There are a lot of claims on the internet all of which are scientifically unsubstantiated. Use a HEPA filered air purifier. Use the best type of vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter. Wash your cat's coat once a week. I think this is not that practical to be honest. Wash

Old Style Siamese Cat

The "old style Siamese cat" is a purebred Siamese cat of moderate proportions or body conformation. The terminology "old-style" is one more of a long list of terms to describe the spectrum of appearances of the Siamese cat. At one time, pre-1950s, there was one type of Siamese cat and that was the same appearance as the original imported Siamese cats from Thailand. There is a lot of debate and dispute as to what the original appearance was and should be today. All this has caused confusion to people outside the cat fancy. You will read about: Traditional Siamese cats Applehead Siamese cats Classic Siamese cats Thai cats Old style Siamese cats Modern Siamese cats Contemporary Siamese cats and so on... Breeders of  the old style Siamese cat say that they breed the original appearance. The old style Siamese cat is also referred to as the Thai cat ( see photos above ). And the Thai cat is a registered purebred cat with TICA, a large cat association ba