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Showing posts from April, 2021

A hint of Harrison Ford in the face of Nutmeg the then oldest cat who died at 32

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The snarl on Nutmeg's face is one aspect of it which provides me with a hint of Harrison Ford but perhaps my imagination is running riot. The photograph was taken when he was 31 but he lived for an extra year, approximately, dying at the ripe old age of 32. He died of heart failure after being taken to a veterinarian with breathing difficulties. His death was reported in the news media on 14 September 2017. His owners were Liz and Ian Finlay of Gateshead, Tyne & Wear, UK. The Harrison Ford snarl is probably dye to teeth issues!  A hint of Harrison Ford in the face of Nutmeg the then oldest cat who died at 32. Photo: Reddit. Mrs Finlay said at the time: "I feel as though my heart has been ripped out. He was a huge character who was dearly loved." Cats are living longer thanks to better medical care, better nutrition and better monitoring of cat welfare although of course these benefits are not universal. It depends where you live and it depends upon how good the cat

Pet puma kept in a one-roomed apartment in Moscow

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MOSCOW, RUSSIA-NEWS AND VIEWS: It is reported by RT.com that the owner of a one-room apartment bought a mountain lion because he was getting bored. He lives in the south-west of Moscow. He calls the cat Hercules. We are told that the two have bonded. He likes the attention that he attracts to himself when he takes his mountain lion for a walk.  Pet puma kept in a one-roomed apartment in Moscow He has become a local celebrity in the area. Some passers-by admire it and are in awe of a puma on a lead but not everyone is happy including a pop singer and reality television show contestant Vika Daineko who is shocked.  The man walks his large, domesticated wild cat across the way from her apartment. She wants the man and his cat banned from the area and is in the process of collecting signatures on a petition to achieve that goal. She is also going to take legal action it is reported. She is scared for the area's children. The Russians like their cats. There are some amazing cat breed

Cat-eye thread lifts have gone viral on Instagram but is it a good thing?

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Instagram influencers in conjunction with high profile female celebrities such as the model Bella Hadid and the Kardashian sisters are fuelling a viral trend which is encouraging followers - of which there are millions - to go for a "cat-eye thread lift". So what is it? You may well know if you are one of those Instagram followers but to many people they will be a mystery.  My cat with upward slopping eyes (slightly). Photo: MikeB. Bella Hadid with cat eyes. Are they genuine? Photo: Getty. It is a minimally invasive plastic surgery operation in which a dissolvable thread is placed under the skin in the corner of the eye which allows the surgeon to lift up the area at the corner of the eye to give the appearance of a cat eye. For me, having some knowledge about the domestic cat, there is a weakness in this because not all cats have eyes with slope upwards at the outer edges. I think that it is a false presumption to say that they do. Some do, like my cat but others don'

Alec Baldwin and wife Hilaria buy a Bengal cat for daughter Carmen

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NEWS AND VIEWS: So what is the big deal about the title to this post? Carmen, the Baldwin's daughter expressed a wish to adopt a cat companion from the age of 2. The trouble with satisfying that perfectly good request is that Alec Baldwin is allergic to cats we are told by his wife Hilaria. So they had a dilemma. Another dilemma that they had is that Hilaria and Alec Baldwin speak up for animal rights and support PETA. Alec Baldwin and wife Hilaria by Bengal cat for daughter Carmen. Photo: Twitter. They probably discussed, quite extensively, adopting a rescue cat from a rescue organisation as this would support PETA and support the idea that if people want a new cat they should always go to a rescue centre first.  But the cat allergy problem scuppered that objective, they thought. So they decided to buy a Bengal cat from a breeder. Hilaria, we are told, did a lot of research and discovered that the Bengal cat is hypoallergenic meaning that the cat does not produce the allergen,

Terrifying moment Siberian tiger in China rams into car and knocks over farm worker

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This video confirms that the Siberian tiger exists in China. If it does exist in China it has to be right up at the north-eastern tip of China near Vladivostok in Russia. The specialists are not sure if this tiger had wandered across from Russia because the area above Vladivostok is the prime area where the Siberian Tiger is found. There is a very precarious popution of Siberian tigers of around 540 as at 2017 . But this will be an estimate. It might be inaccurate. Politically they want the number to be climbing. I don't believe we can trust the figure. Terrifying moment Siberian tiger in China rams into car and knocks over farm worker. Screenshot. This was an interesting story because this large Siberian tiger was on the rampage in a village and you get that distinct impression in the video. The people who encountered the tiger were terrified. The animal saunters across a field and attacks a woman farmworker, Li Chunxiang, but simply knocks her down and then carries on rather u

The secret footage of the N.R.A chief's botched elephant hunt

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I have written about this on another website so I won't repeat myself. In any case there is a video to watch and my thanks to The New Yorker. I have not watched the video. I can't watch this sort of video not because I'm squeamish, far from it, but because I don't think it is good psychologically to watch these sorts of videos. The images tend to stick in my mind and they return to me in idle moments which is upsetting. LaPierre the NRA chief stands over the elephant he so inepty tried to shoot dead. Screenshot. Wayne LaPierre is the name of the man that you see in the video trying to shoot this bush elephant which he fails to do despite trying several times. One of the other people there, a guide, actually dispatches the elephant because this inept, hopelessly inadequate man cannot even do that successfully. On his watch, the NRA has descended into apparent chaos with claims against embezzlement by executives and the organisation has filed for voluntary bankruptcy a

The straight answer about the Scottish Straight cat

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I am going to be quite blunt. I think, however, I am being fair. The Scottish Straight is a normal-eared Scottish Fold. And because the Scottish Fold is a normal-looking cat except for the ears which are folded to the skull, the Scottish Straight looks like any other cat including random bred cats.  The Scottish Straight has lost the only thing which distinguishes the Scottish Fold from all other cats and because of that I don't see the point of trying to sell them to customers. The Scottish Straight is an accident or perhaps they are better described as an inconvenience because they have to be bred in order for the Scottish Fold to be healthy. Scottish Straight kitten. Photo and breeder: Елена Тюкачева. This is because breeders have to outcross to a non-folded eared cat when creating litters of Scottish fold cats. They cannot create homozygous cats because when you do that the genetic mutation creates abnormalities in other parts of the body such as the vertebrae and the feet. 

Cats and dogs have been as important as human family members during the pandemic

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A survey conducted online about the human-to-cat (and dog) relationship threw up the following information. The survey was conducted by the dog and cat well-being business Paws Group. 70% of dog and cat owners believe that their companion animal helped them with their mental health during lockdowns during the Covid-19 pandemic; 70% of children also benefited, according to their parents, from living with a dog or cat during the Covid-19 restrictions: 61% of owners used their companion animal for comfort during the pandemic; Of those cat and dog owners who are married or living with a partner, 67% said that their companion animal was just as important for their well-being as their human partner; 49% agreed that talking to their dog or cat is easier than talking to a human family member; 47% felt that their cat or dog might suffer from separation anxiety when the lockdowns end; 38% agreed that they would like to take their cat or dog to work in the future (I guess this has come about beca

How do I know if my cat has a cold?

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This is an easy question to answer, at least at a fundamental level, because the symptoms of a cat cold are very similar to those of a human cold. Veterinarians call cat colds "upper respiratory infections" or URIs. So you only have to think about people when they are suffering from a cold to recognise one in your cat. Remember, though, that cats cannot catch colds from us and vice versa because the viruses that cause cat colds are not zoonotic.  How do I know if my cat has a cold? Recuperating. Photo: Pixabay. So what are the symptoms? Well the symptoms from the herpesvirus last from 2 to 4 weeks and include sneezing and a discharge from the nose. There may be conjunctivitis in the eyes (pink eye) which is a secondary bacterial infection and possibly corneal ulcers if the disease is untreated. There might be drooling from the mouth and a fever. Pneumonia is rare from this disease and your cat is likely to be lethargic. The symptoms from another well known virus causing

Does your cat circle the food bowl as if scavenging from a dead animal?

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Perhaps my cat is unusual but I don't think he is. There is one aspect of him which is a little unusual in that he was raised for the first six or so weeks of his life as a feral cat by his mother in the urban environment of West London. Therefore perhaps he has a little bit more of the wild in him than is typical of domestic cats.  Picture: MikeB. He behaves like a North African wildcat. Nonetheless, he sometimes likes to circle a food bowl when I put the food down as if he is gingerly and cautiously approaching the carcass of an animal that he has found in the wild and which he wants to scavenge from. He is unsure about food in the bowl even though he has been fed it countless times before. He sniffs the food carefully before consuming it. This is also part of an instinctively cautious approach to feeding which must be a throwback to his wild cat ancestor, the North African wild cat. It is another reminder that domestic cats are a whisker away from their wild ancestor. Doctor

Man feeds the cat of the woman he raped and strangled to death

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NEWS AND VIEWS-TURKEY: Allegedly a man fed the cat of the woman that he had raped and strangled to death before waving to security cameras as he left her apartment. Photos: Newsflash. Eray Hakver, 24, met his girlfriend Cennet Tuba Tokbas, 22 (see above) , at her apartment in the Turkish province of Denizli on November 10 last year. They dated for two months. They were having sex when he allegedly choked her to death. It is then reported that he fed her cat and left. He then called his mother to tell her that the woman might be dead. She was a final year art student at the Pamukkale University. His mother called the police and reported her son. He repeated what he told his mother to the police. He said that she did not resist. His DNA was found under the woman's fingernails which suggested that the woman had tried to fight back in contrast to what he said. Investigators believe that it was a planned attack because of his calm demeanour throughout. It's alleged that he is pre

Cat love - squishy face

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There is almost nothing more that I like with respect to cat photography than these sorts of photographs where that is a lot of love in the human-cat-relationship. This looks like a young woman or girl with her cat companion. I expect that it is set up with the photographer telling the girl that she might like putting her cat over her shoulder to see if it creates a nice photograph, which absolutely does. A lot of pleasure is given both ways in this sort of relationship. Photo: Reddit.com.

Cat behaves like a defective robot when drinking from a tap

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What is going on here? We know how naturally gifted domestic cats are at drinking from a faucet, and how much they enjoy it, so what is happening? This is a most peculiar video. The cat is being stimulated to drink water because the water is dribbling down the side of his face but he has not positioned his mouth correctly! It's as if his drinking action has been triggered by the sound of water flowing from the tap and it does not matter whether water is going into his mouth or not. It is like a mechanical triggering action.  Cat behaves like a defective when drinking from a tap. Screenshot. You would have thought that he would only drink if there was something to drink: if there was water going into his mouth. Perhaps this tells us something about domestic cat mentality and behaviour. It gives the impression that domestic cats are more stupid than we give them credit for but I normally say the exact opposite, namely that they are smarter than we think they are. This cat is behav

Bodega cats make great pictures

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Admittedly the photographers are pretty good but Bodega cats make great cat pictures. Why is this? Firstly, they are working cats. People like to see domestic cat earning their living sometimes. It makes them more useful. They are doing more than just entertaining and keeping a person company. Working cats are an asset and Bodega cats keep down the mice and rodent population in these corner shops of which there are about 10,000 in New York City. Bodega cat insists on equal rights to human customers. Photo: Facebook Although the authority in New York City which is charged with standards of  health and hygiene object mildly to their presence because they present a potential for food contamination. But I do not think that people care that much and it seems that the law is unenforced. There is a fine apparently of $300 but as I understand that there is an equal fine for the presence of rats and rodents in stores. Net result: the cats stay. And I am sure that customers like them, at leas

Coffee cat is amazing

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Well, this is the best example of a coffee cat that I have seen. There is a habit among the creative people working in coffee shops to draw a cat on the top of the coffee but this goes several steps further as you can see. And the biscuits are a nice added touch. There is nothing more to say. Oh, except I don't know if it is real or photo-editing but it looks real. And I think it was created by @VanillaCherie (Twitter). Coffee cat is amazing. Photo in public domain.

Cat microchipping is largely mandatory in Australia

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There are six states and two territories in the Commonwealth of Australia. I will call these non-federal legislatures. Of these eight legislatures, six have mandatory micro-chipping of domestic cats. The two that don't are the Northern Territory and Tasmania. Photo: Pixabay. Tasmania has mandatory micro-chipping of dogs but not yet for cats. Although cat owners are encouraged to have their cat microchip and sterilised if they are over six months of age. There are plans to phase in obligatory micro-chipping by amending the Cat Management Act 2009. The introduction of the law is planned to be at the end of 2021. As for the Northern Territory, although micro-chipping is not compulsory, it is compulsory if a citizen lives within the city of Darwin as part of the council's animal management by-laws. As I understand it, in each case where micro-chipping of cats is mandatory in Australia the law is triggered when a cat or dog is sold or transferred before the age of 12 weeks.  You

Cat food made with 92% sustainable insect protein

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About one year ago I wrote about my desire to see cat food made with insects . There are at least two compelling reasons why this is a good idea. Firstly, domestic cats eat insects naturally. Insects are on their list of prey items.  We've all seem them hunt and devour insects. Catit stand at an exhibition. Photo: Catit on Facebook. Dry cat food made with insects. Photo: Catit. They make plant-based cat litter too: Catit plant-based cat litter. Image: their Facebook page. Secondly the environmental benefits of farming insects to make cat food are well known. It is time to move away from conventional processes. Cat food is made from raw materials that are unsuitable for humans such as diseased or contaminated livestock, roadkill and I would argue also from euthanized companion animals at shelter s. That last point is not in any way advertised or discussed but, years ago, I confirmed that this happens. YOU CAN READ MORE ON THIS PRODUCT BY CLICKING THIS LINK. You want to avoid all

My cat instinctively lay down on a book to keep cool

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It was quite warm today. It was interesting to see that my cat Gabs lay down on a small book that was on my bed. He could have avoided it. It looks a bit uncomfortable. But he chose deliberately to lie on top of it. The only reason why he did would be because he decided that the book was cooler than the sheet. He just wanted to cool off and he obviously recognises that a hard surface is likely to be cooler than a soft one. It's a very small aspect of feline behaviour and slightly trivial in terms of feline knowledge but I think it is worth mentioning which is why I captured the image. I suppose that if it teaches us one thing it is that cats are probably smarter and more switched on than we give them credit for. My cat chose to sleep on this small book because he decided that it was cooler than the surrounding sheet. Photo: MikeB. In addition to finding a cool object to lie on in warmer weather, cats might lie on a book for the purposes of scent exchange. The book has your scent

Indoor cat likes to be carried around in a paper bag so owner tried it outside and it worked great

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PORTLAND, USA: I think that this is an interesting cat story because it goes to the heart of feline emotions and insecurities and it also demonstrates to us away around those issues. The owner said that her cat, Charlie, is a full-time indoor cat. In a rather eccentric way she found that he likes to be carried around the home in a brown paper bag. I don't think the colour is important but being inside a bag is important because the obvious reason why he likes it is the actual reason why he likes it, namely, that it provides him with a feeling of security. Indoor cat likes to be carried around in a paper bag so owner tried it outside and it worked great. Screenshot. I think, wisely, Seyoung Yeo, decided to try the method out when outside the home. Therefore, she took Charlie outside in a brown paper bag and made a video of it at the same time. I can't show the video on this page because I cannot embed the code into the page but I can provide a screenshot of the video from whi

Syndaver makes synthetic cadavers precluding the need to use the real thing

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In what I consider to be a major step forward in animal welfare, Syndaver is an American business which makes synthetic cadavers both animal and human which precludes the need to use the real thing to train veterinarians and doctors. It will also I hope in the long term preclude the need for students at schools to dissect domestic cats. Yes, this does happen and it does cause some controversy . Syndaver canine. Screenshot. Syndaver, I would suggest, is also a business that provides a stepping stone towards eliminating the need for animal testing. If anything can be done to prevent animal testing so much the better. Animal testing is about improving human health and it is naturally controversial. Science can create synthetic animals or parts of animals nowadays and I would hope that in the not too distant future these products will become sophisticated enough to close the animal testing laboratories. In the video you see a Syndaver synthetic canine but it could just as well be a feli

Should a domestic cat lick her wounds and why do they do it?

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I would argue that it is entirely natural for a domestic cat to lick her wounds but veterinarians object to it. After surgery there is a wound and veterinarians stop cats licking that wound by providing an Elizabethan collar. But nature dictates that domestic cats will naturally lick their wounds. It is what a wildcat would do. This is because there are both good things and bad things in cat saliva.  Firstly, licking alleviates pain. And it has a calming effect which is why cats lick themselves when stressed. Cat wearing a collar to prevent her from licking a wound. Pic: Pixabay. Secondly, there is a long list of substances in saliva which are beneficial to wound healing. You can read the full list on Wikipedia. I'll quote a short section: ' saliva contains cell-derived tissue factor, and many compounds that are antibacterial or promote healing. Salivary tissue factor, associated with microvesicles shed from cells in the mouth, promotes wound healing through the extrinsic bl

Jay Leno likes cats and lives with a black-and-white moggy

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For the record, as some people want to know, Jay Leno likes cats and he lives with a black-and-white moggy, which I'm going to suggest he adopted from a cat rescue centre but I might be wrong on that. I get a strong sense that he would do the right thing and adopt from a rescue centre. This is the because he is essentially a decent person. In any case, anybody who likes cats is going to be a decent person! As you almost certainly know he also likes cars. He likes cars and cats a lot, the both. Jay Leno and his cat. Screenshot from YouTube video. He may live with more than one cat but I have seen him with his black-and-white moggy in a YouTube video from The Ellen Show in which he discusses cats and particularly whether cats are smarter than dogs. He believes that they are but it was tongue in cheek. Over a period of time, Jay Leno made nine jokes about Asians eating cat and dog meat. He regrets doing that now. He thought he was doing no harm at the time. I have not heard these joke

Cat's Eye Nebula is a celebration of cat's eyes

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There is a nebula in space, millions of light years away, which is called the Cat's Eye Nebula. It is a beautiful, gaseous object that was first discovered by William Herschel on February 15, 1786. Although it is difficult to measure its distance from Earth, it is believed to be 3300 light years away. This means it would take 3300 years to travel to the nebula when travelling at the speed of light which is 186,000 mi/s or 300,000 km/s. The photograph is a composite image of three different images taken at different wavelengths. The images were taken by the Wide Field Planetary Camera-2. Cat's Eye Nebula. Photo: Wikipedia under CC license. Surprisingly to me, it's estimated age is believed to be 1000 years ± 260 years. Turning to cats! The domestic cat's eye is a beautiful object. There are two perhaps four things that come to mind, immediately. Firstly, we all know that there is a reflective layer behind the retina which directs light back onto the retina which in tu

Serval bites firefighter as he battles a blaze in Vancouver

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VANCOUVER, WASHINGTON, USA-NEWS AND VIEWS: a firefighter was bitten by a serval while battling a blaze inside a Washington home. The serval is an exotic pet for some people. It is a large cat. They are the size of a large dog. They are a wild animal and although exotic in appearance they make unsuitable companion animals in my honest opinion. This is borne out by the fact that many servals are abandoned to shelters or they escape their homes and our not infrequently killed outside the home. Serval playing with a white rabbit at A1 Savannahs in Ponca City, OK, USA. Photo: Kathryn Stucki. Around 2:40 PM last Sunday a fire crew from Clark County Fire District 6 together with the Vancouver Fire Department attended a house fire. As usual, they worked to extinguish the flames which spread, it is reported by The News Tribune, to the attic. Some of the firefighters went through the home looking for any companion animals or people to make sure that all was clear. One firefighter encountered

Lilac British Longhair kitten

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A nice photograph from Nathalie Bruyns of her lilac British Longhair kitten. He is a male born: Date of birth: 23/01/21. The British Longhair is a very attractive cat. It is very similar to the traditional Persian in appearance in my view. Very normal and balanced appearance which I like as I dislike extreme breeding. There is no need for it. The more natural look is more attractive and the cats are likely to be more healthy too. Click here to read and see more about this breed . Lilac British Longhair kitten.

Why do lions kill cubs?

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Male lions sometimes kill cubs. It works like this. A coalition or group of male lions take over a pride of lions. They kick out the other male lions, kill the cubs of the females and then procreate with the females to create their own offspring. They kill the cubs so the females become sexually receptive almost immediately. They need to do this quite quickly because another coalition of male lions will come in, in about two years or more, to kick them out. So they have to do it quickly to ensure that they protect their offspring. The objective of all this? The male lions want have their line of offspring, their family. Not all male lions achieve it. The bigger and the more virile they are the better the chance. It does not always happen that males kill the cubs of the females in the pride that they are taken over. The female might be pregnant and she can then disguise the offspring as the offspring of one of the takeover males. Or she might be able to hide an existing cub and then rai