Sharing my life and love of cross stitch. Thoughts about this and that.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Henna & Oscar

Henna turned 19 last week.She came to live with me as a maybe 6 week old kitten my neighbor's teenage daughter rescued from a microwave at a party she attended. !@#!@# !!! Once she reached adulthood, she's never been particularly lovey dovey, never wanted to be picked up or held for more than a few seconds at a time, and takes great exception to most other things these days, but for a cat over the age of 90 she's in pretty good shape. And though she has a "galloping" heart rate, she's not on any medications. That's remarkable!! She's weighed as much as 11.5 pounds resulting in reduced calorie food for years. Now she's somewhat underweight, so I'm trying to get her to eat as much as possible.

Happy 19th Birthday, Henna! (taken 7-15-15)
I figured Oscar was one of the local ferals when he showed last summer. I may have seen him even earlier than that, but I'm not for sure it was him. He started coming inside during the fall to eat and use the litter box. (Feral? Litter Box??)  I slowly got him used to me, such that when he showed up injured in early January, I simply picked him up and put him in the cat carier - no muss, no fuss. which is when I exclaimed "You've been handled before!" Realizing at that moment he wasn't a feral but likely someone's long-missing pet. To the vet's amazement, he tested negative for FIV, etc, but surprisingly wasn't micro-chipped. He'd been hanging around and/or in my house for at least 6 months. He needed treatment and since locating an owner anytime soon, if ever, wasn't an answerable question, I paid to have him stitched up and while he was under sedation, neutered. Three days later, he dropped the still a bit distant behavior and suddenly began to rub against everything in reach and purring like mad. That abrupt behavior change was really interesting to watch. He'd suddenly decided I was his and this was home. I did look for ads re missing big gray-blue cats for a while, but he'd been around so long by then if there was a missing notice, I couldn't find one. He's smart enough that if he was from around here he'd have long since found his way home. When the stitches were removed, I had him microchipped with my info. I originally thought he might be a Russian Blue since he has that unmistakeable blue grey coloring, but wrong color eyes, and he was already too big. I started researching other big blue cats with gold eyes and wooly fur and discovered and now and absolutely convinced he's a CHARTREUX. Mostly if not pure bred. How a  Breed still relatively uncommon in America ended up a stray on my windowsill I'll never know. In January he weighed 14.1 pounds and the vet said he was a bit too thin. A month later he'd already gained 2 pounds and in May he weighed 18.1 pounds. The vet said he'd be better off at 16 pounds. He's now up to 19.1 pounds. GOOD GRIEF!!  Since he's not outside 24/7 running it off, Oscar definitely needs to go on a diet!

Oscar January close-up -14.6 pounds

At the Vet's in May - 18.1 pounds! He's gained another pound since then.
Watching it snow in February

Again, I am convinced he's a Chartreux. His eyes are gold, He's got the distinctive wooly fur and at 16 to 18 pounds is the right size. And then there's the quiet trilly meow also particular to the breed. However, when he REALLY wants out or attention, he can get quite loud and insistent. If he's just announcing, it's the trills. But mostly he WANTS OUT. At times he runs to every window and tries to find a way. I've discovered that's usually linked to an urgent need to go potty, despite the fact he and Henna share 2 litter boxes. A couple of times he's left me a present - I guess because when he couldn't get out he didn't have time to make it back to the litter box. I am NOT happy about that! To get out he jumps in and out of the windows over my bed (once on my shoulder - it's like getting hit by a falling bowling ball, and for a long time bit my toes and grabbed my leg with all 4 paws. That was until he bit my heel while I was asleep and I inadvertently kicked him with said bitten heel right in the face. I apologized profusely but still feel awful about having done so. He did get the message and hasn't bit the back of my heel since. And when I say NO or make an irritating squawk he does quit the nipping and capturing. He also knows the word "stay" and no longer ALWAYS tries to get out the front door when I leave. Keeping him inside when I get home is another matter. His present favorite game is to flop on the floor and TRY to attack my feet as I step over him (after a belly rub, of course), just not as robustly as before. His favorite sleep position is flat on his back legs fully splayed. Silly, beautiful cat.


After years of putting it off, I suddenly need to have cataracts removed ASAP. Because I have small pupils and other issues, the surgery is going to be more complicated and take longer to perform and heal from than normal cataract surgery. Provided something doesn't come up in the mean time, first eye will be toward the end of July and the second toward the end of August. Because of the glaucoma, the eye surgeon will also be implanting a tiny stint in each eye. I'm told I will never know it's there. For years I've been telling myself, and those who feel compelled and entitled to scold me for continuing to put it off, that I'd rather see blur (which I am an expert at reading, by the way) than run the higher risk of cataract surgery. However, now because of recent faster growth of the cataracts that impacts on my glaucoma issues, it's more like I'd rather run the risk of cataract surgery than go blind from glaucoma. As I've already had 2 previous laser procedures done on both eyes that had no effect whatsoever on the pressure, I rather doubt this will either and I'm advised that more surgery may be well necessary in the future.  I am quite nervous and NOT happy about any of this!! So if you are so inclined a small prayer or kind wish would be appreciated.

The new Prairie Schoolers are out, but sadly with the news that after 32 years Pam and Nancy are retiring and these are their final releases. All good things ......