Goodbye to Maple

maple-remembrance

Remembering Maple, created by Nicole

I just received the news from my friend Carolyn that Maple lost her battle with, most likely, lymphoma.

Maple was a dilute tortie, rescued as a kitten by Carolyn’s daughter Nicole. We will miss our sweet, gentle cousin-kitty, but her image will live on in the many products she modeled for Carolyn’s website and the many photos of her I used in designing ads and brochures for Carolyn’s company, My Three Cats & Co., Inc. Though she was quiet she was very playful and silly, and I loved her very roundness, not fat, but thick plushy gray and peach fur and a rather blunt nose and rounded whisker pads. And she was always very quietly happy.

Nicole designed the lovely tribute, above.

Near the end of Maple’s life, Carolyn contacted a hospice veterinarian to visit Maple at home and make further recommendations for care beyond what Carolyn’s regular veterinarian had offered. I have never used one, but know a veterinarian who offers this service, Dr. Nancy Ruffing of Gentle Journey Veterinary Hospice, and suggested that she call Dr. Ruffing to help with Maple’s care and to be available in the case that Carolyn would need to choose euthanasia. And because Dr. Ruffing deals almost exclusively with end-of-life issues, she may have more pertinent suggestions for Maple’s care and comfort, which she did.

When your cat, or other pet, is struggling with a chronic illness or simply nearing the end of its life, consider the possibility of finding a hospice veterinarian in addition to your regular veterinarian. Managing end-of-life issues yourself, even if you are skilled, can be exhausting physically and mentally, and many veterinarians don’t offer in-home euthanasia. The hospice veterinarian, as with Maple, can help with managing day-to-day care and comfort near the end, and knowing that they can visit your home if euthanasia is necessary can be a great comfort to you to know, and much more comfortable for them when the time comes.

So we will remember our beautiful cousin Maple, and send our good thoughts to Carolyn’s household.


Maple

dilute tortoiseshell cat in cat bed

Maple in the Woolies Bed.

Here is Maple a few years ago modeling a Woolies bed; she is now 17. I saw this lovely dilute tortoiseshell kitty tonight, and she seems to be holding her own. We’ll have to see how she does.

She belongs to the owners of My Three Cats & Co., Inc., my longest-standing customer for design and illustration. Over the years she has modeled many a product this company carries, happily trying out new toys and treats. She’s as sweet as she looks. Let’s wish her health and comfort, and her humans too.


Help FosterCat Even More Through My Three Cats

my three cats logoMyThreeCats.com will donate $5.00 to FosterCat when you place an order!

MyThreeCats.com and The Studio of Bernadette Kazmarski have partnered to create a wonderful opportunity for you to help homeless cats.

In addition to bidding on the print, you can shop at www.MyThreeCats.com and trigger an instant donation to FosterCat, Inc.  For each and every order you place at www.MyThreeCats.com now through May 1, 2010, MyThreeCats & Co., Inc. will donate $5.00 to FosterCat, Inc.

Once www.MyThreeCats.com has received your order, you’ll receive an email confirmation of the donation.

There are only 7 days left to this special offer, so please act now!

_________________________________________________

photo of pink plate with daisiesMy Three Cats & Co., Inc. is one of my customers for design, photography and promotion. In fact, they are the longest-standing customer for my commercial art business—we’ve been working together for 12 years!

From the very beginning, it’s been the company’s philosophy to find the best products for your cat in value, durability, safety, nutrition and fun.

From the beginning, my own philosophy has been to work with customers whose product or service I used, supported or believed in so that my work could further my goals for the world. I think this worked out just fine between me and My Three Cats.

Please visit their page in the “graphic design and illustration” section on my website at My Three Cats to see some of the work I’ve done for them.

Happy shopping, and thanks for supporting both one of my customers and FosterCat at the same time!


Peaches Says, “Thanks for all the good wishes, they worked!”

photo of cat on table

Your 42 minutes is up.

Well, I think I lost a few days in there, but at my age I don’t really care about time, except for when it’s time to eat, which is still every 42 minutes.

But I felt pretty bad for a while there. My mom kept waking me up and looking at me and smelling my breath, and then she’d follow me around and watch me in the litterbox—please! some privacy for a dignified older kitty! Then we would go into the kitchen, and I would get up on my counter to eat but I just felt crappy and even though I was hungry nothing tasted good. Then I’d go back to sleep some more, but I wouldn’t get any peace because mom would wake me up again.

Even before this I’ve had some bad days now and then. My tummy would gurgle and I’d throw up everything I ate, and it would be really hard to do, you know, number 2. I always thought that was the way it was supposed to be because I was 15 when I came here and it had been that way for years, even with my other mom when my sister was still around.

But this mom would have none of it and let me out of the room here but left my sister in so she could watch just me. I thought I had gotten used to my sister pushing me around and stealing food, but no one did that here and finally I could eat a whole meal and use the litterbox without anyone chasing me in the middle of…you know. Wow, I really started to enjoy mealtime and not worry so much.

cat peaking over blanket

If you don't get up I will dig you out.

Then my sister was gone and my mom started feeding me all sorts of different food “to see what works for you,” she said. That was nice. I really liked everything, but anything with salmon was the best. I felt very special, and I could eat whenever I wanted, well, almost.

Still, I would have days when nothing agreed with me and mom would hover. I just wanted to tell her to leave me alone and I would be okay.

And that’s the way this started out. I was comfortable curled on mom’s lap and she seemed relaxed about it. I had contacted Eva about the job opening for an office assistant and it seemed like that was going well, and I was trying to keep it a secret. Mom was at her computer all day, Cookie was mad because I was on mom’s lap all the time so she walked on me, and I figured I would be okay again in a day or two.

cat on blanket

Will you please get up?

But it went on longer than usual. I knew I felt bad when Giuseppe tried to curl up with me on mom’s lap and I just didn’t feel like moving to make room, and he licked my face but I didn’t even have the energy to look up at him. About that time I started losing track of things and I knew I was really sick.

All I wanted to do was sleep, especially after mom and that lady that smells funny and the guy that comes with her were talking about “kidney failure” and all teamed up on me in the kitchen and tried to make me into a kitty sacrifice or something, sticking needles into me and filling me up like a water balloon. When I woke up later, I was really hungry and ate for the first time in I-don’t-know-how-long, and I felt a lot better too. Mom was so happy when I woke her up the next morning. I was hungry!

cat at top of stairs

The kitchen is this way.

But it didn’t last all day. Mom tried to do the same voodoo thing to me and I said there was no way I was going to put up with that again so she didn’t get too far with it. Later my mom pulled some stranger in off the street about whom she said something like “vet tech school graduate” and “glad to find her and she lives just around the corner” to help her but I stopped that before they were done too. I may only be 5.4 pounds, but I know how to fling all four paws at once and throw everyone off. Mom said that was probably enough and they talked about how kitties “had to get used to this”—as if we’d ever get used to torture like that! Enough torture, just bring on the salmon pate! I’ll eat already!

I started out okay the next day and got right back to work pushing papers around on the desk and walking on the keyboard, but by later on I felt crappy again. It was really dark and everyone else was sleeping and I heard mom on the phone telling someone that she really didn’t want to wait until the next night when she’d “have someone to help her”, and suddenly I was in a plastic carrier with a warm blanket and we were moving!

cat on landing waiting

I am losing patience.

I never did figure it out, but we ended up in a strange place with lots of lights that smelled like more things than I could figure out and we were doing the needle thing again. Many hands were petting me and telling me how cute I was and what a strong kitty I was to have lived this long and they were sure I’d be fine. I wanted to tell them they had no idea what I did all day, that I am one hard-working kitty! And at my age yet!

I think we had a little snack when we got home, then the next morning I sat on mom until she got up and this time I was good all day. In the evening the same stranger came around who had tried to torture me with the needle a few days before, but she and mom just talked and petted me, and then they petted everyone else and I knew I was off the hook.

cat on crochet project

Peaches keeps my crochet project from getting away.

So I got to eat some pretty good stuff, that pureed chicken in the little jar that mom feeds me off a spoon, and all sorts of salmon pate, even little bits of cooked real salmon and, most exciting, real raw meat, little slivers of salmon and venison that mom warms up in her fingers. Mom gives me this now and then already, and I can’t eat too much of it but I don’t need to. I feel supercharged after I eat it.

And I got back to work and worked all week, helping around the house and I don’t know if mom would ever stop dawdling upstairs in the morning if I didn’t coax her down. Mom kept an eye on me, and that was a problem because I could barely get back to Eva to tell her I was well again and we should get back to our interview thing.

Near the end of the week, though, I started to slow down again and mom kept pulling at the skin around my shoulders and frowning and saying, “Hmmm.”

peaches and Kelly on the butterfly rug

Peaches and Kelly

Then Kelly, who usually eats with me and curls up on the butterfly rug with me, wasn’t feeling well and I discovered she was upstairs in the bathroom. Mom called that stranger, who I guess isn’t a stranger anymore but this time she didn’t just visit, they did the voodoo needle thing again, both me and Kelly.

Maybe I really am getting used to it, and I also remember that after I had a nap and slept it off I felt really good, so I just put up a little fuss so they wouldn’t think I liked it or anything but I didn’t make them stop. Mom had me in a death grip against her chest, anyway, so I couldn’t even wave a paw, and she kept talking and talking which was really nice because she was warm and it felt like she was purring.

cats on desk

Dinner, now.

So now I’m waiting for dinner, and not only do I have to wait longer than usual but one of those annoying young cats is taking up her entire lap. The only good thing about them is that they are warm and soft and don’t mind when I touch them, not like Cookie or Kelly who can sometimes be prickly, but when I try to walk on him he squirms around and I land on the keyboard and mom picks me up and puts me back on her desk.

But it looks like mom is getting up now and dinnertime looks imminent.

And I got get well wishes from Daniela and Eva and Ingrid and Amber and Marg’s Pets who sent us “lots and lots of purrs, 2 woofies, 2 Heehaws and 1 Baa” and Allia and Bogey from My Three Cats who always sends us cool toys and everyone else who wished me well and so many others, and it made me feel so good that everything seemed normal again. Read the comments in “Get Well Wishes for Peaches”. What’s a kitty to do without the internet these days?

I’ll be in touch Eva!

Read about what started it all in “Get Well Wishes for Peaches”.

P.S. Peaches’ mom thanks everyone too! Your support was just as important to me as it was to Peaches!


Can’t Break This Heart!

Hearrt Attack Catnip Heart

Hearrrt Attack Catnip Heart

When our cats will play with scraps of paper and chase their own tails I often wonder at the sense of purchasing toys for them. Watching them with a catnip toy is worth it, though! I also appreciate good craftsmanship and a toy that reflects a deep understanding of feline sensibilities and perceptions.

MyThreeCats.com, with Bogey as Chairpurr-son, is the longest-standing customer of my business for design and writing and also a business I patronize for goodies for the kids because the selection of toys, treats, furniture and more is so carefully assembled for quality, price and environmental/cultural awareness.

They carry Ducky World catnip toys, and this set of Hearrrt Attack catnip toys is one of the favorites in this household—aside from the fact that they are apparently filled with really good…stuff, I think they are also just the right size for a good round of pouncing, biting, licking, kicking and tossing.  And if red is indeed one of the colors cats can see, this would be hard to miss.

Aside from my cats’ appreciation of these toys, I am thrilled with their craftsmanship. Of the nine cats living with me now, only Peaches does not play with toys though she does rub her face on catnip toys left on the floor, but that leaves eight cats kicking the crap out of any given toy and I’ve never seen a Ducky World toy so much as burst a thread. And while cat toys are also designed with humans in mind, this set of hearts says “happy kitty”, “can’t break this heart” and best of all “lick me, bite me, bunnykick me”—they really understand kitty behavior!

catnip hearts toy ad

animated ad I designed for My Three Cats & Co., Inc.

Our friends at MyThreeCats.com have a special on these toys for Valentine’s Day—save over $1.00 on one toy, or get a free toy with purchase of any six toys! Take advantage of it until February 14, 2010, get your cats some quality toys they’ll really enjoy and give yourself a laugh every time you see it on the floor! At left is the ad I designed for MyThreeCats.com to run on their website and other sites for advertising. How good is that? Designing ads for catnip toys!


Shop in June and Make a Donation

logo_emailJune is Adopt-a-Cat month, and in honor of this distinction, MyThreeCats.com will offer a donation with every purchase you make on their website in June. Here’s how it works:

“All over the U.S., shelters are overcrowded with homeless kittens and cats, especially because many stray cats and pet cats aren’t spayed or neutered. If you own a cat who isn’t yet spayed or neutered, please take steps now to have this done by your veterinarian. If you have recently lost a cherished pet, or are simply thinking about adoption, we strongly encourage you to visit your local shelter. There, you will find many wonderful cats and you will be saving a life.

MyThreeCats.com is committed to helping this critically important cause. During the entire month of June, MyThreeCats.com will donate 10% of all sales proceeds to the Doris Day Animal Foundation , including all June orders you place with us. Please send all of your friends and family a link to MyThreeCats.com and ask them to place their June orders now. Happy Shopping!”

MyThreeCats.com is one of my customers for design work and I occasionally add to their blog BogeysBlogSphere, and the owners are friends of mine. I know they’ve always been generous with local shelters on behalf of their business, so click and shop at My Three Cats and know that your purchase is helping other cats.


Kitty Fingers

Giuseppe Stretches up the Wall

Giuseppe Stretches up the Wall

Read my blog entry—on another blog?! I’ve written a little “snippet” about how cats use their claws…

I’ve been working with My Three Cats & Co., Inc. for a little over 10 years in design, writing and marketing. When they added the shopping cart functionality I left their page design to someone else and now I just write articles and design print and electronic advertisements, which is really the fun part, anyway! They just set up a blog, so I’m going to send you there to read my entries at Bogey’s Blog Sphere and to check out their site, www.MyThreeCats.com. You may want to be prepared to do some shopping because they carry some choice tidbits for both cats and their people. I don’t let my kitties look when I visit the site because they’ll want every toy they see!

Make sure you check out “Cat Chat”, too, a catalog of four years’ worth of articles I’ve written for MyThreeCats.com.

I’ve also placed the URL for their blog at the bottom of the right-hand column on my blog, as well as the addresses to others’ blogs you might find interesting. Happy reading!