Wednesday 13 April 2011

Rhinestone Cat Collars

Here's a nice selection of rhinestone cat collars brought together on one page. They look particularly good on wildcat hybrids. I am thinking Savannah cats in fact, F1 Savannah cats in particular. Cat collars should be the type that release if they get caught as there have been cases of cats being injured and hanged by cat collars.

Cats can get feet and legs caught in them too. Please take precautions and chose wisely if you buy a rhinestone cat collar. They look classy on the right cat but there is a health issue. Collars can become too tight if the cat is growing up. This is another thing to factor in when buying.

Personally I wouldn't buy one but I respect peoples' choice and preferences as long as they are sensible and show concern for the cat as well.

Rhinestones are fake diamonds. They are made of glass, rock crystal or acrylic.

As for the Amazon UK market, I don't see rhinestone collars. One of the nearest to this type of cat collar is a glitter one!

Next are a series of links.

There are some really fancy Rhinestone Cat Collars at Here Kitty Kitty (USA market):

Fancy rhinestone cat collar perfect for a Russian Blue cat

See a full selection on this page.

The reason why this particular cat collar would suit a Russian Blue is because they have gooseberry coloured eyes and those eyes would go really well with the colours of these stones.

Pet Jewelry & Collars do some nice safety rhinestone collars in a range of 11 colours (USA market):

See their full selection on this page.

Next on the USA market I would like to introduce a Ragdoll cat breeder who sells rhinestone cat collars. They are called Willow Tree Rags and they have some great collars:

Cat collar from Willow Tree Rags.

See their full selection on this page.

What about the UK and India (India are a growing marketplace for people who are interested in keeping domestic cats)?

India is a source of low cost consumer goods much like China. So, although there is probably only a very small domestic market for cat collars there are a good number of manufacturers who supply internationally. One is Lotus Handicrafts who don't make rhinestone collars as far as I can tell but they do make customized collars to order.

Kingdom - Pet Collar
Designer on Flickr - click on pic.
As for the UK market, this has proved very disappointing. On a Google search I did find UK websites selling cat collars but it appears that rhinestone collars are not a favorite in the UK as none appeared!

It may be that the rhinestone is more a part of American culture resulting in the wide range on (north American market). Although originally, they were "rock crystals gathered from the river Rhine"1 in Germany.

Associated Pages:

1. Wikipedia authors.

Michael Avatar

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Tuesday 12 April 2011

Lynx Kittens Fight Each Other

Lynx kittens fighting
Photo by Joachim S. Müller (Flickr)

Lynx kittens of the same litter fight each other spontaneously and in a manner that is so violent that it can cause serious injury and even death. What is going on?

Anastasia Antonevich and Sergey Naidenko are conducting research into this phenomenon that goes far beyond simple sibling hard play and rivalry. These are serious unprovoked attacks by one sibling on another.

They have observed sudden attacks by one kitten on another. The mother has to beak it up. Injuries can be serious and include bites to the paw and neck. Sometimes limbs are broken and a cub is occasionally killed.

The fighting has been observed between 7 week old Eurasian lynx cubs (60% of time) and can go on for several days. "Almost all of the litters.." of the Iberian lynx fought in this violent way. The fights occur once but the hostility can last for several months.

The research investigates why lynx kittens fight each other so violently and how these fights affect the development of the cubs. They are not motivated by shortages of food.

Bobcats apparently also demonstrate sibling aggression. It is not known whether the Canadian lynx litters engage in these fights.

The fights occur in the wild and in captivity. My observations? Well I am not sure. It seems that the young lynx starts to prepare for independent survival at a very early age. When adult these siblings will have to survive in competition with each other. Perhaps the competition starts at 7 weeks of age for the lynx and the sooner one can dominate and even eliminate another so much the better for the winner.

See also rewilding of lynx wildcat.

Michael Avatar

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Monday 11 April 2011

Tabby Cat Personality

Grey tabby British Shorthair show cat sleeping on grey litter at a cat show
Tabby British Shorthair cat sleeping on grey cat litter
in his cage at a cat show - Photo by Michael

There is no such thing as a tabby cat personality. There really can't be. The tabby cat is not a breed of cat  - see Tabby Cat Breed. The tabby cat is a cat with a tabby coat and this coat type is found on a large number of different cat breeds and is the most common type of coat for random bred cats (mixed breed cats).

The tabby cat coat is everywhere. The tabby coat is found on a large percentage of wildcats too. In fact nearly all the wildcats have tabby coats. If there are 500 million domestic cats in the world, about 300 million would be tabby cats!

It is absurd to think that these 300 million cats all have the same or similar personality and also odd to think that the type of cat coat also dictates the cat's character. Also if there was such as thing as a tabby cat personality the wildcats would have the same character as the domestic cats.

People also think that calico cats have the same personality. Calico cats are also not a cat breed. "Calico" is the American name given to cats with a totoiseshell and white coat. I don't think that the calico coat affects the personality.

It is possible that people search for tabby cat personality thinking that the "tabby cat" is a cat breed - it is not. It is a very ubiquitous cat coat, no more, no less. It is worth pointing out that the difference is personality between the cat breeds is quite small. Most are in the middle ground. There is a difference between the most static (e.g. Persian) and the most active (e.g Bengal) but most are in the middle.

If you would like to read more about the tabby cat coat and see a wide range of photographs of different types of tabby cat, please go to this page: CAT COATS TABBY.

Even if there was such as thing as tabby cat personality, the character of individual cats would have a greater impact on behavior. Individual cats have quite a wide range of personalities.

Michael Avatar

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Sunday 10 April 2011

Feeding A Stray Cat

I am feeding a stray cat and I am becoming frustrated and irritated. I'll explain why. About 3 years ago he walked into my life through the back door cat flap. He was skinny, underweight and very light. He was athletic and adventurous. And he was and is unneutered.

Today, he is a bit overweight, less athletic, lazy, demanding food that he does not need while giving me ringworm and massively itchy skin because I am allergic to him (see cat allergen Fel D1). He is on my bed about a yard from me as I write this and I itch. He has also acquired two cat abscesses through fighting over territory that I have fixed by trips to the vet.

All my life I have never been allergic to cats. But I am to Timmy, the name I gave him.

stray cat
Timmy - the man after eating 5 sachets of cat food.

He gives me ringworm because he carries the fungus although I can't see it on him. Perhaps he just carries it and transmits it. It seems like that. It means that when he comes up to me in the early hours of the morning for food, I have to put on trousers as he rubs against my legs and delivers the ringworm that way. Or he head butts my arm and gives me ringworm there too.

I have two domestic cats, Binnie and Charlie. Binnie is about 19 years of age and Timmy's presence makes her insecure. That is another downside. Charlie is OK with Timmy but all in all there are a pile of downsides and irritations but I love him and cannot "get rid of him", however you do that. Because I have no idea really how to stop him coming in.

I could put in an electronic cat flap and put activating collars on Binnie and Charlie. That would stop him getting in. But, I don't want to do that because Timmy relies on me now and it is a big complication. Also, it is my fault, entirely. I have created this dilemma.

And this post is about "the dilemma". When you can't turn your back on a cat in need you create for yourself a potential dilemma because at some point in time you have to stop.

And that time has come for me. I have had one cat for many years. That is about fine for me. Then I took on my mother's cat, Charlie, after she died about a year ago. I don't want to care for a third cat who gives me diseases and raids my wallet.

That said Timmy does not stay. He comes, eats, sleeps and goes to where he came from if there is one place. God knows where that place is. I have seen him cross the busiest of main London main roads. One day he'll get hit. But he has survived thus far. That is another downside - the worry.

Feeding a stray cat, you see, can bring with it a lot of problems. Timmy gets the same high quality food as the others and demands it now. When he first turned up he ate all the left overs and rubbish. Now he wants boiled fish and prawns and looks at me plaintively if he hasn't been served it. And if he dains to eat cat food he can eat more than a person at one sitting - 5 sachets of 100 grams each! His belly swells up as if he is pregnant. He gets through a lot of what you see below:

cat food in boxes
Cat Food - don't buy Iams by the way
as they animal test

I can't afford him. I can hardly touch him. I need to get him to the vet to treat his ringworm and to be neutered. But I don't want the hassle, can't really afford it and in any case he hates being put in a carrier and I would hate to have his balls cut off.

Feeding a stray cat? Think about where you are going. It's a dilemma.

Michael Avatar

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Friday 8 April 2011

Diabetic Cat Food

Moonchild, diabetic cat at shelter
Photo by Taekwonweirdo

Diabetic cat food refers to cat food that is suitable for diabetic cats and which might avoid the use of insulin injections.

The food profile for diabetic cat food is:
  1. high-protein
  2. low-carbohydrate
This is because cats mainly metabolise protein for glucose rather than carbohydates thus the cat food profile mentioned is "more efficiently metabolised" and a help in controlling cat diabetes.

Cat foods matching this profile at the date of this post and in the USA are:
  • Purina DM Feline (Purina pet food is owned by Nestlé Purina®/Friskies who I am told conduct animal testing. This may colour your assessment in respect of buying this cat food.
  • Royal Canin Diabetic DS 44.
  • Science Diet m/d Feline.
  • {for the UK and Europe I would ask your vet but please direct your vet. The diabetic cat food should be as stated in the above profile}

Veterinarians don't generally recommend homemade cat food because of the risk of preparing it poorly and raw food contamination. But if it is prepared properly under tightly controlled hygienic conditions complying with all the rules of raw food handling it is the best cat diet in my opinion. See Homemade Cat Food.

Apparently some vets advise adding meat to purchased, commercial cat food. A1 Savannahs add raw chicken to commercially prepared cat food for their cats - Best Kitten Food.

Best Kitten Food! Photo by Michael @ PoC

But the picture above is not a recommendation that a kitten be solely feed raw chicken. That would be very wrong, please note as the diet would lack sufficient essential nutrients such as taurine and arginine.

Elizabeth M. Hodgkins DVM is one of those veterinarians who recommend that dry cat food should be off the menu even if your cat is not diabetic.

This is because the dry cat food manufacturing process demands the addition of a "carbohydrate source" to make what they call, "kibble". It is said to be unnatural for a cat to eat such large amounts of carbohydrates bearing in mind that they are carnivores (meat eaters) - Cat Food Recipe.

Obese cats are predisposed to diabetes. Obesity "reduces tissue responsiveness to insulin". Diabetes becomes difficult to control. Overweight cats should be dieted.

One of the classic diet cat foods is Hills c/d but this is dry cat food and not recommended by some vets.

I am sure a vet would help a cat caretaker create a diet for their cat. It depends on the cat and the vet!

Examples of blood glucose curves
The basic principle is to divide the cat's calorific use by the calories in the food. The figure should be more than 1. Diabetic cat food should be provided in more than one meal to avoid high blood sugar levels after eating.

Cats on insulin injections given once daily should be fed half the cat food when the injection is administered and half at "peak insulin activity" which is 8-12 hours later (based on the cat's "glucose curve" - see image).

A glucose curve is a graph that shows blood glucose concentration over a period of time (say 24 hours) after the insulin injection. Blood samples are taken from the cat and a test conducted on the blood. Bob Tucker discusses this in his article on treating a diabetic cat.

Cats on two injections per day should be fed half the daily cat food diet at the time of the injection.

Cats on oral medication should be fed small meals throughout the day.

All short quotes and all information for this article are from Cat Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook, Fully Revised and Updated. The rationale for claiming fair use of the quotes is that they enhance the sale of this book (twice advertised here) and they are short.

Associated Pages:

Michael Avatar

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