Friday, July 5, 2013

Firework Fiasco

Yesterday, here in America anyway, was Independence day. Everywhere people set out their grills, had picnics (That is, if it wasn't raining a monsoon as it was here in Georgia), spent time with family and friends, and probably watched fireworks--maybe even setting some off themselves!

"You're not planning on setting these off inside . . . are you?" - Finny

Yes, people love fireworks. And why not? They are excitingly bright, colorful, and festive. Other than the noise, they're great! That's just the problem though for pets, especially cats. As people, we understand that those huge explosions in the sky are harmless (to us anyway--the atmosphere takes quite a poisoning from fireworks), but the noise is terrifying to our little furry friends.

"Is it safe to come out now? Is the boom-boom gone?" - Finny

Since there's no way to prevent fireworks on special holidays, the best thing we pet owners can do is help protect our cats and keep them calm during firework shows. There are many sites out there that provide insight on how to best do that, but I found two particular articles to be the most helpful.

Two days ago, posted an article entitled "Dogs and cats may fear noisy fireworks." The article encourages pet owners to keep their pets inside during fireworks because scared animals are more likely to run away from home. It's difficult to re-catch animals when they are scared, so it is better to just keep them inside so they can't escape and get lost accidentally.

Wikihow also has an article on the subject. They've compiled a list of 5 steps and tips to help keep your cat calm during fireworks. Most of the steps consist of keeping your cat away from the fireworks so that the sounds won't be so loud. Good ways to do this are:

  • Close doors and windows to decrease the firework sounds.
  • Put your cat in the most sound-proof room of the house (this is usually a bedroom or some other place they like to hide).
  • Play calming music and talk gently to your cat to ease their nerves.
  • Pamper your pet. Make your feline feel like royalty by bringing them treats and creating a special area just for them to hide in.

If these tips don't help, there are more drastic measures you can take to help calm your kitty. For extremely-jumpy cats, you can talk to your vet about getting some tranquilizer pills, which should help to calm them down.

Another idea, which Finnegan is a huge fan of, is to give your cat catnip. Supposedly, the cat will be so entranced by the "kitty drug" that it won't even notice the firework sounds.

Just remember: even if none of these ideas work, don't get angry at your cat for being scared. Treat them gently and remember that cats' hearing is five times better than a humans'.


Monday, June 10, 2013

Mother's Day and Father's Day Cat Humor

Yes, this post is late to be about Mother's day, and it's too early to be about Father's day, but you know how cats are--they do everything on their own time schedule!

Finny actually slept through Mother's day and is planning to probably sleep through Father's day as well.

In honor of all cat moms and dads, Finny has searched throughout the Internet's vast collection of cat humor to present you with today's holiday treats. First of all, to all the cat mothers out there...

Image from the article "A Mother's Day Poem from the Cat"

"And most of all, remember we love you!" - Sammie

Sammie and his mom.

Also, Finny would like to give an early shout out to all cat dads.

For some unknown reason, there are many men who just don't like cats. Maybe they had a bad experience with cats, or maybe they just haven't met many cats in their lives. Whatever the reason is, it's just a fact of life that many men prefer dogs to cats.

However, there are a select group of men who love their cats; these are the wonderful cat dads we would like to honor today. Finnegan discovered this article that he would like to share. It's called "20 Cats Who Got Ties for Father's Day."

Don't you dare put me in a tie...

Happy Mother's day and Father's day to the great cat parents of the world!


Monday, May 13, 2013

Kitty Quiz

How much do you know about cats?

National Geographic made a quiz called the Cat Quiz, which tests the taker's knowledge about felines. The quiz is composed of ten questions about general cat trivia

 If you're a devoted follower of this blog, some of the posts should help you answer a few of the questions. If you'd like to see how you score, you can take the quiz here.

Finnegan would like to share that he took the quiz, and scored a 100 percent, of course. He is a cat himself, after all!

Tuckered out after taking the quiz, Finny takes a nap on my backpack.

So, how well do you know your cats? Your quiz results might surprise you.


Saturday, April 13, 2013

Protect the Strays?

As Finnegan was surfing the web today (of course he really surfs the web--he loves Facebook!), he and I discovered an interesting story in the Yahoo! news.

"How do you get this webcam to work?"

Why was the story interesting to Finnegan? Well, here was the title of the article: Fur Flying in Florida as Cat Lovers Push Law to Protect Strays.

The article talks about a proposed legislation in Florida that would create cat colonies to protect stray cats in particular areas. The idea behind this legislation is TNR, or "trap, neuter, release," as Becky Robinson (co-founder/President of Alley Cats Allies) calls it. Instead of trapping and killing stray cats, the cats would instead be vaccinated, fixed, and then released back into the wild.

We think this would be a great idea, but some people (particularly the environmentalist lobbyist in Tallahassee, Florida) are against the idea. They think that the strays should be put down because they "are a murderous menace to Mother Nature."

Finny's disapproval face.

Of course, though, they might have a slight point (see Kitty Murderers).

Finny is just wondering . . . shouldn't environmentalists care about all of nature--including the animals in it, particularly cats?

The reason Finnegan is so attracted to this article is because both he and his "brother" Samwise were both strays at one time. Sammie was born out in the wild and wasn't adopted until he was a few years old. Finnegan, on the other hand, had a family at one time, but they abandoned him and he lived as a stray until he found me, Rebecca.

Just think about this: if all strays were captured and put down, neither Sammie or Finny would be here today. Thank goodness for rescue owners and other people who have pity on stray cats.

All in favor of saving strays say, "Meow!"



Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Hey, Diddle Diddle, the Cat and the Fiddle

Many songs, rhymes, movies, and stories associate animals (particularly cats) with music or musical instruments. This is funny because, according to Charles Snowdon, Hilldale Professor of Psychology and Zoology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, animals don't enjoy human music.

Sammie doesn't appreciate the iPod music.

Pet owners seems to think that their pets like the same music they do, but this is not the case. Studies show that humans like to hear things within our vocal and acoustic range. Animals are the same way, and they enjoy their "species-specific music."

Natalie Wolchover from Discover News writes that, "To animals, human music falls into that grating, unrecognizable category. With vocal ranges and heart rates very different from ours, they simply aren't wired to enjoy songs that are tailored for our ears. Studies show that animals generally respond to human music with a total lack of interest. With this general rule in mind, Snowdon has worked with cellist and composer David Teie to compose music that is tailored to suit them."

Snowdon and Teie are currently working on composing music specifically for cats. The songs they have composed can be bought online at Music for Cats.

Maybe Finny and Samwise need some cat music to listen to. They certainly don't like our music!


Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Little Beggar

Most people think that dogs are the beggars of the domesticated pet world. Yes, dogs do have those large sad eyes, and can even be taught to beg for treats on command, but in my experience, cats are just as guilty of being little beggars to get whatever they want.

Exhibit A: Finnegan Chase.

Whenever I walk into the kitchen, he immediately begins to lace between my legs and cry for attention. He displays this frantic behavior usually before dinner, but he will beg for something to eat even after he's just finished a meal.

Doctors Foster and Smith explain to frustrated cat owners how to prevent cats begging during meal times. In their article, How to Deal with Cats that Beg, they state five ways to prevent cats from begging and to reduce begging behavior of it's already become a habit.

1. Make sure the cat has already been fed before you sit down to eat your meal.

2. Don't feed the cat from the table or any other eating areas.

3. Move the cat to a different place while you eat.

4. Don't leave food sitting out, even if it's wrapped.

5. Use a training device on the table to teach the cat that it is off limits. The article lists three Fosters and Smith training products that they suggest cat-owners use (X-Mats, Tattle Tale, and a Bridgeport Stoneware Feeder).

I think it's time for Finny Cease Begging Bootcamp, no? Gotta love the little beggar though.


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Kitty Murderers

Every cat is a little hunter at heart. Even Samwise, with his lazy sleep-all-day attitude occasionally gets "the rips" and runs around the house wanting to play and attack his little, toy goldfish.

Finny: "I want to play with the goldfish too..."

In a study done by the University of Georgia, it has been discovered that cats spend most of their nights hunting down small animals. This will be no surprise to people who own cats. Cats love to hunt down and play with little creatures like birds, rodents, and lizards.

The study was done by using kitty cams, small cameras attached to the cats' collars. The cameras recorded everything from the cats' point of view and showed researchers what exactly it is cats like to do all night. This is how they figured out that cats like to kill--a lot!

What is fascinating is that cats don't kill because they are hungry. In fact, the cats only ate 30 percent of the animals they killed, brought home 21 percent, and left the rest of their victims to rot on the ground. Cats kill things because they play them to death. Literally.

Cats also make an average of 2.1 kills per week, which adds up fast considering that there are 86.4 million house cats in America alone, and that doesn't include strays.

Male cats have proven to be more avid hunters than female cats, UGA also discovered. Finny agrees with this statement.

"I'm a great adventurer!"

If you are interested in viewing any of the kitty cam footage, you can do so at their website.


Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Anniversary: A Cat Success Story

In two days, my husband and I will be celebrating our "seventhmonthivesary," which is our way of saying "We've been married for seven months, so we're going to celebrate!"

I've been threatened by our family members, who grow tired of our monthly celebrations, that once we hit the one year anniversary, we'll have to stop our monthiversaries, and I'm sure we will. It's just been so exciting to celebrate every small step we make together as a couple.

Married couples aren't the only ones to celebrate anniversaries--cats have anniversaries as well, especially Emma, a library cat.

Picture from

This year on February 4, Emma celebrated her 10th anniversary at Lyme Public Library in Connecticut.   In 2003, Emma arrived at the library and instantly became part of the family. Her previous home had been the local animal shelter, so on her anniversary the library accepted gifts of cat and dog food, toys, and other pet supplies to be donated to the shelter for other pets like Emma who were without a home.

An article on The Lymes Patch about Emma says that she has had country-wide visitors. She's also been featured in Cat Fancy magazine, the book Working Cats of Southern New England, and has her own page on Lyme Public Library's website. Emma also has a twitter you can follow.

In August, Finny will have been with me for two years, and this October, Finnegan will celebrate the first anniversary of his blog. He looks forward to celebrating these anniversaries with you!

This is my party outfit!


Wednesday, January 30, 2013

More Pets, Please!

Cats love to be petted--no one will argue with that. The question is . . . why do they like it?

"More pets, please!"

AvoDerm, a premium cat and dog food company, hosts a page on their website called "Why Do Cats Do that?" which attempts to explain many of cat's behaviors. One of the questions they answer is our question of the day: why do cats like to be petted? Their answer is fairly simple: "To your cat, petting feels a lot like licking. when you pet your cat slowly and gently, she knows you are taking good care of her. You are showing that you love her!"

Mother cats lick their kittens to clean them. kittens grow up associating the sensation of being groomed with their mother's tender care. When you pet your cat, you are giving them that same motherly love. This is why cats purr when they are being petted--they know that you care about them and it makes them happy.

Gently pet your cats often--let them know just how much you love them.

"Why did you stop petting me?"


Monday, January 21, 2013

Feeling a Little Pukey

This past week, Finnegan was feeling very sick. For about three days, he couldn't keep food down; he vomited multiple times throughout the day. I wasn't sure what was making him sick, and was considering taking him to the vet.

He moped around the house, wanting to be held for extended periods of time, and slept nearly all day. By looking at his face, I could tell that he just didn't feel well at all.

Cats get sick for many different reasons. talks about some of the causes and treatments for cats when they vomit. The most common reason that cats get sick is because they swallowed something that irritated their stomachs, like hair, grass, or bad food.

Webmd explains that it is normal for cats to vomit a time or two if they eat something that makes them sick. The site also warns cat-owners to take their pet to the vet if it vomits for more than a few days or too many times in a row.

You can oftentimes tell what is wrong with your cat by determining the way your cat is vomiting. Webmd identifies five different types of vomiting to watch out for in cats because they can indicate a more serious problem.

A type indicated with a * means that if your cat presents this sort of vomiting, get your cat checked out immediately by a veterinarian.

1. Persistent vomiting: Suggests the consumption of indigestible substances such as grass, hairballs, or spoiled food. Could also be a sign of infectious enteritis.

2. Sporadic vomiting*: Has no relationship to meals and leaves the cat looking haggard and listless. Suggests liver or kidney disease, worms, digestive track diseases, or (in older cats) an intestinal tumor. 

3. Vomiting blood*: Indicates bleeding between the mouth and small intestines.

4. Vomiting feces*: Suggests an intestinal obstruction or peritonitis

5. Projectile vomiting*: Suggests a complete blockage in the upper gastrointestinal tract that might be caused by hairballs, tumors, or small objects. Brain diseases such as a tumor, encephalitis, and blood clots, also can be an indication.

If you ever have a question about the severity of your cat's vomiting, always seek help from a vet. Vomiting can also quickly lead to your cat becoming dehydrated, which is also a serious problem. 

Webmd also explains how to treat your cat at home for normal vomiting. If your cat is only vomiting and does not show signs of any other serious problem, you can easily treat it at home. After the object that is bothering your cat's stomach is expelled, it is best to withhold food for a few hours to allow the stomach to rest. If your cat is thirsty, you can give it some ice cubes to lick initially and then a few sips of water after its stomach has had time to rest. If the vomiting has stopped after a few hours and water is being tolerated well, you can offer some food to your cat. 

Thankfully, Finnegan's little stomach bug passed and he suddenly got better yesterday. He feels a lot better now and is back to being his silly, wild, lovable self.


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

My Mommy Says I'm Special

Many people forget that humans are not the only creatures that have physical and mental disabilities. Some cats are born with special needs or become disabled because of accidents.

There are a few internet kitties who have become famous because of their disabilities, like Lil BUBLittle Bear, and Samwise Chance. Yes, Sammie. Unlike Lil BUB and Little Bear, who's disabilities are mostly physical, Samwise's affect his health, personality, and little cat mind.

Sammie as a stray.

When Sammie was first found, he had been living approximately two years as a stray. He was severely underweight and was infested with worms. Just a month or so after Elizabeth rescued him, he began suffering from an impacted bowel and an upper respiratory infection--both of which would have killed him if he were not taken immediately to the vet. It took many months and multiple trips to the veterinarian to make Samwise healthy again after being living on his own for so long.

Living "in the wild" also caused Samwise mental trauma. He is very skittish and seems only perfectly comfortable around his "mother" and savior Elizabeth. Samwise also rarely acts cat-like. He only meows under great duress, cannot climb (although he has very long claws), and rarely plays. Most of the time, Sammie merely sleeps. Even though he doesn't act much like a cat, Samwise does have one very strong quality: he is sweet.

Samwise also has a few various problems that are associated with nervous disorders, such as involuntary nystagmus.

Tabby's Place is an adoption center, hospital, and cage-free facility for cats that have disabilities or are considered "not adoptable." Through their website you can sponsor a cat, adopt a cat, volunteer, and more. There is also a Tabby's Place location to visit in New Jersey, if you happen to live in that area and want to check them out.

Another rescue shelter for disabled pets is Pets with Disabilities is located in Maryland, but their website allows visitors to make donations, learn more about disabled pets, and adopt pets. Unlike Tabby's Place, which is exclusively for cats, Pets with Disabilities has cats and dogs. is like a Craig's List for disabled pets. Users can list disabled animals they have that need new owners or animals they found that need a forever home. Although this site is good, I do ask you to be wary about posting animals on there that you want to find a home for. Just like you can't trust everyone on Craig's List, you can't trust all the people that use the site--they might not love your special pet like it needs to be.

Sammie requests for you to always remember that every pet needs love--no matter what.


Monday, January 7, 2013

It's Here!

Finnegan Chase: Siamese at Large is finally here! Today, the blog-inspired book published live at

The full-color interior book is eighty-two pages long and contains all the 2012 posts from this blog and a few sections that have original content that can only be read by buying the book. Some of the original content includes pictures of Finnegan and Samwise that have not been posted on the blog.

You can find more information by reading this previous post about the book, checking out my website page, or . . . by buying it!


Thursday, January 3, 2013

Buy Finnegan Chase for your home!

No, the actual cat Finnegan Chase is not for sale--but items featuring images of him and his book are!

Rebecca Jane's author store on Cafepress now has a section of Finnegan Chase memorabilia. Currently, there are only a few items listed, but more are in the process of being designed.

Please support, the ever-growing in Internet popularity cat, Finnegan Chase by checking out his store and his book Finnegan Chase: Siamese at Large, once it is published.