Guest Star: Weebles the Wild

As someone actively involved in rescue I often come across animals in need and am sought out to handle animals others have found. Dogs, cats, puppies, kittens, horses, and mice have all found their way to my place. I generally adopt out as many as possible, keeping only those I’m unsure will find homes or be adoptable.

One of the last kittens I fostered stayed because he has a rare genetic condition called Congenital Hypothyroidism (it’s actually fairly common in humans and puppies, but kittens rarely live long enough to be diagnosed and are often misdiagnosed). Most veterinarians will go their entire career without seeing a case. All that to say of course a congenital hypothyroidism kitten would come my way. Meet Wee Baby Seamus!

He appeared to be a normal, if very weak, 4-week old kitten. The previous owner had waited at least 2 days (during which she had not been able to get him to eat or drink anything) to let me know he was not well. I assumed he was a runt that had not been cared for properly and after rushing the completely unresponsive little guy to a vet, we went home with subcutaneous fluids and vitamin supplements after a mad scramble by the vet to bring him around. The veterinarian, the animal rescue I work with (Southern Cross Animal Rescue – SCAR), and I all assumed he would be ready for life as a kitten in the rescue’s cat facilities in a few weeks.

Wee Baby Seamus (AKA: WBS, Weebs, Weebles, etc) was able to go to work with me and due to his precarious state, I fed him every 1-2 hours rather than the 3-5 I generally use with 4-week old kittens.  Having gone through such a long period without food or water I was not surprised that my new little friend was sluggish and slept the majority of the time.  In the next couple days a follow-up exam by the veterinarian was positive, he seemed to have pulled through and no longer needed subcutaneous fluids. We all anticipated a normal recovery.

After a week I started to have doubts. Despite constant nourishment, WBS was not very active. Even though he should have been about 5 weeks old (and kittens that young can vary a little, especially after such a rough start), he still seemed to need to feed every 1-2 hours. He was starting to try and crawl a bit but his joints seemed strange. His legs seemed to sink down behind his feet rather than sit on top of them as a normal cats joints align. He wanted to play but his little legs chased my fingers in slow motion. He spent the vast majority of his time eating or asleep, sometimes falling asleep mid meals. I wondered if the lack of sleep was making me a bit paranoid and the veterinarian thought he was probably a munchkin cat of some sort. His short little legs and pot belly made that feasible.

 

Weeks later WBS was finally able to eat wet food mixed with formula (as he should have been able to do much sooner). He even ate strangely, he would take huge mouthfuls, let most dribble out of his mouth as he tilted his head to the side and ground down with one side of his molars. I noticed his claws hadn’t grown out from the first trimming on the night I’d gotten him. The hair above his little nose was starting to look thin. His coat was rough and thin. I felt he did not look good and I knew he was not developing normally. He was so ridiculously adorable, but I was getting extremely nervous.

Luckily I had worked at a vet school and was active with a rescue run through the school and still had friends who worked/volunteered there. A wonderful vet tech who has a huge heart for cats watched Weeble on Facebook (he has his own facebook page and I regularly uploaded videos/pictures) and sent me a message to tell me she thought he had a congenital defect. I took WBS to the vet school (3 hours each way) and her initial diagnosis was confirmed. None of the veterinarians there had ever had a congenital hypothyroid kitten case. Weebs was “borrowed” by the vet school for hours as they ran tests and most of the internal medicine (or cat crazy folks) checked him out. Weebs had become a minor celebrity back home (people would come into the store where I was working and demand kitten time) and he received the same treatment at the clinic of the vet school. After the diagnosis, he was put on a thyroid hormone supplement twice a day, and the cat trapped in the kitten started to emerge! Below you can see the little Ewok start to look more like a kitten.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once his body started receiving the hormones it had desperately needed he matured incredibly fast. He started moving at a more normal rate (zoomies down the hallway were his favorite when he first figured out he could run), his joints solidified and he was able to walk/run normally (although he does have a gunslinger gait), and he was able to transition to strictly solid foods. Unfortunately, the diagnosis and medicine were too late to prevent being mentally stunted. Weebs is extremely unique, he responds to stimuli slowly if at all. Until you know what to watch for he seems to be deaf. He has OCD tendencies and a few strange neurologic symptoms.

However, despite all of that, Weebles is always happy. He’s filled with wonder, everything is always new and exciting. The slightly crazed (or high) expressions below are the way he watches everything. Someone walking across the room is fascinating and fun. Going up and down stairs is one of the best parts of his day even though he does it multiple times every single day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

<- He got sucked into the couch and couldn’t figure out what to do about it. So he just stayed there until I finished taking pictures and laughing.

I never adopted WBS out because I was scared that his new owners would not be compliant with his medication and he must have that medication to survive. He requires blood tests and veterinarian visits to make sure his dosage is correct. He can never go outside. We are currently in the middle of an adventure to get him integrated with the rest of the animals in the house. It’s a constant adventure and is very often frustrating, but he is the most fun. Everyone loves him (well…except for the other animals at this point) and he keeps us laughing. He’s a great example for the kids (and adults who have perhaps forgotten) that different doesn’t mean less.

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Adventures of Oliver & Nubia – Sleep Disturbances

Hi everyone,

We are back for the sixth installment of The amazing adventures of Oliver & Nubia!

Today’s is all about a typical night in the live of our two little felines… Oliver happily asleep dreaming of juicy mice not expecting that his sister has over plans for him and our bed!

 

“Teatime” with Nubia and the Natural Pet Box

Hi everyone,

It’s your favourite black cat Nubia here today! As you may know Oliver is lazy when it comes to testing toys nowadays so it’s always gotta be me trying them out… : o

Nubia: Human! What is wrong with this? The box isn’t open! How am I meant to open it with my three paws. 😮

Nubia: Right this is better! Now let’s see what I can find in here. 😀

Nubia: Of course since humans quite slow at laying out toys… I had to dig it all out of the box! This particular box is called Natural Pet Box and contains ethical products all the way. 🙂

Nubia: Each box comes with this handy little note telling you more about it’s content.

Nubia: AND I was so glad that my annoying brother wasn’t here today… I got to have all the fun with the toys. 😀

Nubia: And I LOVE the smell of natural felt toys… they are tasty. 😉

Nubia: After all this playing it was time for a snack… I was a little suspicious at first BUT quickly realised that these treats smelled strong for a reason! They are absolutely lip smacking delicious… I almost took of my human’s hand LOL.

Nubia: What we love the most about these pet boxes is that you can get a bestseller box with pre-assembled options or make your own box! Boxes start at as little as £10 with reasonable postage cost or even free if you order £25 or more of goodies for your feline companion. And if you order by the 31st of July you can get 10% off by using the code WE10

Nubia: Got an extra special day? Your cat’s birthday? Well they’ve got cat birthday boxes as well! 😀

Nubia: Right I am all exhausted now. ;o And since my brother is nowhere to be seen I may just eat all of the treats on my own!

Signed by,

Her Meowjesty Queen Nubia the Disturber of Peace

Purrsday Poetry: Night Muse

Hi everyone,

Please find below the latest entry in Purrsday Poetry by Mollie Hunt:

Night Muse

In night
I wander,
purposeful
stealthy
sleek
black
cat.
In shadow
I follow
I lead
I wander.
My eyes glance up
to star-filled dark.
I wander.
Grass beneath my paws,
dust beneath my paws,
wood beneath my paws,
rug beneath my paws,
I wander
home.

Mollie’s Website: http://www.lecatts.wordpress.com/

Mollie’s Amazon Page: http://www.amazon.com/author/molliehunt

Mollie Hunt’s Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/MollieHuntCatWriter/

If you would like to enter your own poems for Purrsday Poetry don’t forget to email info@katzenworld.co.uk

Never miss a post again by signing up to our Newsletter! 🙂

Thanks,

Marc

Cat-astrophe strikes for trapped cats

From intrepid moggies and fearless felines the RSPCA is on hand to rescue cats who have got themselves into a tight spot!

It is a well known fact that cats can get themselves stuck… a lot!

Whether scaling a 50ft tree with no escape route, squeezing themselves into tiny gaps, or falling down a hole they can’t get out of, some cats can get themselves into some very tight squeezes. 

They are naturally curious and inquisitive animals but some cats are better than others at navigating the hazards that may pop up along the way.

On average the RSPCA receives a call to its National Control Centre about a cat every three minutes and receives more calls about cats than any other animal.

New figures reveal that since the start of this year the RSPCA has been called to 2,819 trapped cats.

May and June had the most rescues with 606 and 611 respectively.

These figures include cats that have become entangled, ‘trapped up’, ‘trapped down’ or stuck in water.

The largest amount of rescues were cats ‘trapped up’ something with 1,488 in total from January to June.

Rescues can be a tricky business and requires specialist equipment to be able to safely free an animal from a tight spot without injury as well as avoiding a nasty nip or bite in the process.

RSPCA superintendent Tim Minty said: “There is a range of equipment needed for these particular rescues. The animal in itself will be frightened and its behaviour is most likely to be unpredictable because of the situation it’s in and the fact they don’t know the person trying to rescue them.

“Some standard equipment such as bitemaster gloves, eye protection and a grasper and restraining basket can all help with a cat rescue.

“Cats like height and so it’s very possible that our officers will need to reach heights themselves.

“Some of our officers have extendable ladders and nets which can reach to a first floor window and really helps in these situations – but sometimes we do need to ask the fire brigade for help if they are available.”

For more difficult rescues there are also water and rope rescue teams available who use a variety of equipment, for example extendable poles, pulleys, harnesses, and three types of inflatable rescue boats.

Some of the challenges cat’s face can leave some owners understandably concerned or worried about their safety.

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However, for most cats going outside is important for keeping them happy and healthy, explains Alice Potter, the RSPCA’s cat welfare expert.

She said: “Unfortunately we can’t always be there to supervise our cats when they are out and about to make sure they are safe but there are some steps we can take.

“Make sure your cat is microchipped and registered with your current contact details. Remember if you’ve moved home or changed your phone number you will need to update your details.

“Microchipping your cat is the most reliable way to identify them and gives you the best chances of being reunited if they become lost. If you decide to put a collar and ID tag on your cat it’s important to ensure the collar is correctly fitted and is a quick release type collar with a snap-safe buckle – other collars can get caught and cause nasty injuries.

“It can be helpful to have a consistent routine with your cat and to feed them their meals around the same time each day. This way your cat will know when to come home for food and can give you a chance to check in with them and make sure they are okay.”

There are also a few things that everyone can do to ensure there are less cat rescues needed.

Alice Potter added: “Cats can fit into small spaces and like hiding and sleeping in warm quiet spots. This means it’s important to always check that there are no cats in your garage, shed or conservatory before you lock it up.

“Likewise it’s important to be cautious with any bins or other places that cats might get in and become stuck.

“If you have any concerns or find a cat in distress, please contact the RSPCA on 0300 1234 999.”
Our pick of the top cat rescues in June:

  1. Albus, the three year old tabby cat, had become tightly stuck between an office building and an external wall in Coleridge Road, Hove, on Thursday (June 1).

The owner of the building called the RSPCA and animal collection officer (ACO) Julie Parsons attended to try and free the cat.

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She said: “Poor Albus was stuck very tightly between two walls with about a four inch gap. No one knew how he managed to fit in there in the first place.

“It took about three hours, working with East Sussex Fire and Rescue to create a huge hole in the wall to free him.

“He was struggling to breathe where he had wedged himself so tightly between the walls so time was of the essence.”

Just when it looked like Albus had used all up of his nine lives, one last tug saw the moggy freed and reunited with his grateful owner.

2. A plucky kitten which had got herself wedged 8ft up a chimney was freed after a four-hour rescue operation between the RSPCA and Merseyside Fire Service.

Lola’s worried owner contacted the RSPCA after hearing the kitten making noises inside the chimney.

She had not long been adopted by her owner and, feeling timid in her new home, sought a place to hide – behind the fireplace.

“From there, she had somehow managed to climb inside the chimney – about 8ft up it,” said RSPCA Animal Welfare Officer Matt Brown, who went to rescue Lola from the house in Fairfield Drive, in Liverpool, on Friday (16 June).
3. A vulnerable kitten who used up one of his nine lives after getting stuck 20ft up a huge tree has landed on his feet – after bagging a new home with the firefighter who rescued him!

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It took 90 minutes to get to the little ginger puss who was buried deep inside a very dense tree in Bigby High Road, Brigg.

RSPCA animal collection officer Carol Smith was called to the scene on Tuesday morning (27 June) and requested the help of Humberside Fire & Rescue Service as the kitten was so high up.

She explained: “Due to his age and the height of the tree, I called in a local fire crew to help get to him.

“It took more than 90 minutes to get up to the tree and find him amongst the dense foliage. When they found him he was huddled inside a pigeon nest with some nestlings!”
To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit: www.rspca.org.uk/give or text LOVE to 87023 to give £3 (Text costs £3 + one standard network rate message).

Cats at The Bar: Daddy?

Hi everyone,

We are back for another cute entry in Cats at the Bar to help us all get over the hump day!

No, I am not your father. And no, you cannot have a drink

Have you got a cute photo to share? Let us know!

Never want to miss a post again? Click here to sign-up to our Newsletter

Thanks,

Marc

How to Get Sticky Substances out of Cat Fur

How to Get Sticky Substances out of Cat Fur 

If you’re a cat owner, chances are a time will come when your favourite feline gets into somewhere they shouldn’t, and returns covered in anything from oil to chewing gum! While it’s hard to prevent cats getting into sticky situations, there are a number of household remedies to make sure they get cleaned up properly afterwards. Read on for our top tips on removing sticky substances from your cat’s fur.

Oil and grease

The best solution for cleaning oil or grease from cat fur is a mild washing up liquid. Lather the soap into the affected area (undiluted) and then rinse your cat in a tub of warm water until the suds have all disappeared.

Chewing gum 

Any home with cats and children is likely to come across this sticky problem at some point. The good news is you can tackle it in the same way that you would remove chewing gum from clothes, by applying an ice cube to the gum; freezing can make it easier to gently pull out. If this doesn’t work, try massaging in some vegetable oil or another edible, non-toxic oil, and leave for around 15 minutes before removing the gum and then following the above tips to wash the oil away.

Glue or resin

If your furry friend’s been at the stationary drawer again, don’t panic – all the ingredients to remove glue from fur can be found in the average kitchen. Again, start with a natural oil, such as olive oil, and rub a little into the area for about 10 minutes (do it as part of a cuddle to make your cat a bit more cooperative). Leave for a further 10 minutes, then try to comb out as much glue as you can, being careful not to pull on the hair root. Finish by working in a small amount of peanut butter and leaving for another 10 minutes, before washing your cat with mild detergent, and rinsing thoroughly.

Household cleaners or chemicals

If your cat has a toxic substance stuck in its fur, such as petrol or household cleaners, try to prevent them licking themselves by using a collar or wrapping them in a towel until you can clean the area. Try to trim away the contaminated fur with hair or nail scissors, using a comb to pull the fur away from the skin. You can use cooking oil to rub away the substance if it’s a small area. After using either of these methods, wash your cat using a mild detergent and warm water.

Safety tips

  • If you’re dealing with a hardened substance that won’t budge, such as paint, it’s usually easier and more effective to cut away the affected fur.
  • Remember, your cat’s first instinct is to lick its fur, so don’t use any harsh chemical products to clean them, such as paint thinner. Certain natural oils are also poisonous to cats, including tea tree, eucalyptus and citrus oils.
  • If you think your cat has ingested any chemicals, call your local vet or RSPCA centre for advice.