Captain's Cabin

Pirate Lord of the Platinum Coast
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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Pop culture main reason Calif has Chihuahua crisis

I have write about this before, but from the Associated Press:

LOS ANGELES – California has more Chihuahuas than it can handle, and it has Hollywood to blame.

There are so many Chihuahuas at shelters in Oakland, they have started shipping the dogs out of state, said Megan Webb, director of Oakland Animal Services. They have sent about 100 to Washington, Oregon and Arizona, she said, "and as soon as they get them, they are ready for new ones."

Chihuahuas make up 30 percent or more of the dog populations at many California shelters. And experts say pop culture is to blame, with fans immitating Chihuahua-toting celebrities like Paris Hilton and Miley Cyrus, then abandoning the dogs.

The problem appears to be specific to California — shelters elsewhere would love to share the wealth, said Gail Buchwald, senior vice president overseeing the ASPCA adoption center in New York City.

"We never have enough supply for the huge consumer demand for small dogs," she said.

One of Webb's biggest problems is a lack of money to fly the dogs to other states. Buchwald said she would be happy to help.

"Nothing is outside the realm of possibility here. We have a supply-demand isssue," she said.

Chihuahuas are the most popular breed of dog in Los Angeles, so it makes sense it is the most abandoned breed, said Madeline Bernstein, president of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles. In Oakland, some days, they get 10 of the 5-pound dogs a day, Webb said.

The problem is so bad that shelters all over California that were built for big dogs had to remodel to accommodate the little guys.

Among the reasons for the glut is the breed's popularity in movies like "Beverly Hills Chihuahua" and as celebrity pets, said Dave Frangipane, senior coordinator for Chihuahua Rescue of Beverly Hills. A cute puppy can grow up to have adult health problems or become protective and aggressive.

There are less glamorous reasons, too, like the high vet bills Chihuahuas can bring. And the biggest spikes in California Chihuahua populations are probably due to puppy mills and backyard breeders, Buchwald and Frangipane said.

Chihuahas are cute, but vulnerable, Frangipane said. "People think nothing of kicking a small, yappy dog. And they can be abused by people of all sizes. A toddler can snap a Chihuahua's leg in a second," he said.

On a side note, my bean is going to see the doktor to day to see if and when they can fix her leg. She has been very sick and have something wrong with one of her leg, she has hard time walking. Please purr for her to get better soon.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

8 Wonderful Holly Day Cat-ditions

Get me outta this mess

Do you have favorite holly day traditions you celebrate with your humans? Many of us do. Cats are an important part of the family and many of us are included in holly day plans. In some cases, cats are an integral part of the holly day.

I'd like to share some holly day traditions with you and even learn about some of your favorite traditions so that we can share them with other cats that are developing their own traditions.

1.Hang Cat Stockings. Why not? If your human has a stocking, you should too. Many of the cats I know have stocking each year that are proudly displayed in their homes. Most pet stores sell some adorable designs.

2.Go See Santa. How about a photo of you and your human with Santa? This also makes a great holly day card. This works with cats that do well with going out.

3.Blessing of the Animals. Find out if there is a local event in your area. Check your local paper or pet store bulletin board.

4.Make Some Cat Treats. Help your humans make some cat treats! You get to snoopervise and be master sampler as well. Make extras to share with your cat friends.

5.Quiet Time. Spend a little quiet time with your human. Even an evening when you helping to decorate the tree or just listen to some holly day music is often a welcome time for you to enjoy your human's company.

6.Bandana. Some cats like to be dressed (most don't) but most will tolerate a simple holly day bandana. How about dressing up with a special holly day-themed bandana?

7.Plan Something Special. A very sweet tradition for many Cats is to do something nice for people that have been nice to you. That may be sending a special card or buy a small gift with your mouse money.

8.A Little Eggnog. Maybe while your human is enjoying some wonderful holly day eggnog, you can be treated to some cat-approved creamer. There are different manufactures of products such as "CatSip".

And don't forget to look under the tree on Christmas Day, especially if you have been a good cat as Santa Claws will leave a present for you!

Now it's time for your holly day tradition. Please leave a comment and let me know if you have any holly day traditions you like to share with your humans!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Myth Monday - The Candy Cane


A candy cane is a hard cane-shaped candy stick. It is traditionally white with red stripes and flavored with peppermint or cinnamon (also known respectively as a peppermint stick or cinnamon stick); however, it is also made in a variety of other flavors and may be decorated with stripes of different colors and thicknesses. The candy cane is a traditional candy surrounding the Christmas holiday, particularly in the Western world, although it is possible to find them throughout the year.

In its early form, the candy cane began as a simple white stick of sugar for children to enjoy - there was no "cane" shape or stripes to speak of. While it is uncertain where the first canes originated, it is clear that by the mid-17th century, if not earlier, its use had already become widespread across Europe. These sticks were made by confectioners who had to pull, cut, twist, and (in later years) bend the sugar sticks by hand, making it a time-intensive process. Candy cane production had to be done locally, since they were easily damaged and vulnerable to moisture. The labor and lack of storage combined to make these candies relatively hard to get, although popular.

The cane shape

The distinctive "hook" shape associated with candy canes is traditionally credited to a choirmaster at Cologne Cathedral in Germany, who, legend has it, in 1670 bent straight candy sticks into canes to represent a shepherd's crook, and gave them to children at church services. The shepherd's staff is often used in Christianity as a metaphor for The Good Shepherd Jesus Christ. It is also possible that, as people decorated their Yule trees with food, the bent candy cane was invented as a functional solution.

(There is a modern allegorical tradition that reinterprets the candy cane's shape as a "J", standing for Jesus Christ. The stripes are said to represent his sacrifice, with the red being blood, and the white being purity. However, there does not seem to be any historical information to support any claim that the cane was originally made with this allegory in mind.)

Christmas usage

In Europe, candy canes were used to decorate Yule trees along with other items of food. In North America, the first documented example of the use of candy canes to celebrate Christmas occurred in 1847, when a German-Swedish immigrant by the name of August Imgard hung the candy canes from the branches of a Christmas tree. Christmas cards from the following decades show Christmas trees decorated with candy canes, first white canes, then striped ones in the 20th century. This then spread to the rest of the continent, where it continues to remain a popular Christmas tradition.

Candy canes are primarily used as a decoration for Christmas trees. This is done by using the "hook" shape of the candy cane to hang them on branches of the Christmas tree. A single tree can have many candy canes.

Red stripes and peppermint flavor

The stripes are made similar in fashion to a barber's pole, with the red stripes twisting around the white stick of sugar. These signature stripes did not become part of the candy cane until the 20th century. It is uncertain who first started using the stripes, but evidence of their use only appears after the turn of the century. At around this time, candy makers began using peppermint as a flavor.[12]

Mass production

Bob's Candies was the first company to successfully mass-produce and distribute candy canes while preserving their freshness. Lt. Bob McCormack began making candy canes as special Christmas treats in the 1920s. That decade also saw the company's use of cellophane as a wrapping to keep moisture from damaging the candies, and by the 1950s, they were using a candy cane machine invented by his brother-in-law Gregory Keller to mass-produce them. These two inventions made it feasible to mass produce, ship, and distribute candy canes. The following years saw further refinements in packaging and design to protect the candies from being broken, making it more practical to store them and ship them for longer periods of time.

Candy Canes are a seasonal treat for human children. They should not be given to Cats or Dogs or other companion animals as they can splinter easily and stick in a windpipe, causing aphexiation and death. They only sort of Candy Cane you should get for the Holly Days is the ones that have cat nips in them!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Myth Monday - The Northern Lights

Northern Lights

Auroras, sometimes called the northern and southern (polar) lights or aurorae (singular: aurora), are natural light displays in the sky, usually observed at night, particularly in the polar regions. They typically occur in the ionosphere. They are also referred to as polar auroras. In northern latitudes, the effect is known as the aurora borealis, named after the Roman goddess of dawn, Aurora, and the Greek name for north wind, Boreas, by Pierre Gassendi in 1621.

The aurora borealis is also called the northern polar lights, as it is only visible in the sky from the Northern Hemisphere, the chance of visibility increasing with proximity to the North Magnetic Pole, which is currently in the arctic islands of northern Canada. Auroras seen near the magnetic pole may be high overhead, but from further away, they illuminate the northern horizon as a greenish glow or sometimes a faint red, as if the sun were rising from an unusual direction. The aurora borealis most often occurs near the equinoxes; from September to October and from March to April.

The northern lights have had a number of names throughout history. The Cree people call this phenomenon the "Dance of the Spirits." In the middle age the auroras has been called by sign of God (see Wilfried Schröder, Das Phänomen des Polarlichts, Darmstadt 1984). Auroras can be spotted throughout the world. It is most visible closer to the poles due to the longer periods of darkness and the magnetic field.

Auroras are the result of the emissions of photons in the Earth's upper atmosphere, above 80 km (50 miles), from ionized nitrogen atoms regaining an electron, and oxygen and nitrogen atoms returning from an excited state to ground state. They are ionized or excited by the collision of solar wind particles being funneled down, and accelerated along, the Earth's magnetic field lines; excitation energy is lost by the emission of a photon of light, or by collision with another atom or molecule:

oxygen emissions
Green or brownish-red, depending on the amount of energy absorbed.

nitrogen emissions
Blue or red. Blue if the atom regains an electron after it has been ionized. Red if returning to ground state from an excited state.

Oxygen is a little unusual in terms of its return to ground state, it can take three quarters of a second to emit green light, and up to two minutes to emit red. Collisions with other atoms or molecules will absorb the excitation energy and prevent emission. The very top of the atmosphere is both a higher percentage of oxygen, and so thin that such collisions are rare enough to allow time for oxygen to emit red. Collisions become more frequent progressing down into the atmosphere, so that red emissions do not have time to happen, and eventually even green light emissions are prevented.

This is why there is a colour differential with altitude; at high altitude oxygen red dominates, then oxygen green and nitrogen blue/red, then finally nitrogen blue/red when collisions prevent oxygen from emitting anything.

Auroras are associated with the solar wind, a flow of ions continuously flowing outward from the sun. The Earth's magnetic field traps these particles, many of which travel toward the poles where they are accelerated toward earth. Collisions between these ions and atmospheric atoms and molecules causes energy releases in the form of auroras appearing in large circles around the poles. Auroras are more frequent and brighter during the intense phase of the solar cycle when coronal mass ejections increase the intensity of the solar wind.

Seen from space, these fiery curtains form a thin ring in the shape of a monks tonsure.

(I wonder why you only see them by North Pole. Now I know.)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

More people list dogs and cats on Christmas lists

Associated Press A poll shows 52 percent of pet owners plan to buy their animals a holiday gift — up from 43 percent last year.

Gus and Molly, a pair of German shepherds, Rosie the bulldog and Zoe the cat will get treats and playtoys, "the good sturdy stuff," said owner Norm Authier, 50, of Long Beach.

"We have always done this. We don't have any kids so we spoil our dogs," Authier said.

The bounce in pet gifts is expected despite the fact that fully 93 percent of Americans say they'll spend less overall or about the same as last year, according to a separate Associated Press-GfK poll.

The poll found that six in 10 of those who own only dogs planned on shopping for their pet for the holidays. Forty percent of those with only cats planned to pet shop.

Sawyer, a 9-year-old Labrador-border collie mix, will get something special because he was born on Christmas Day, said owner Pat Brown, 74, of Beloit, Wis. He can also look forward to his two favorite homemade snacks—popcorn and ice cubes.

Plush holiday-themed toys are very popular with pet owners, as are candy cane-shaped rawhide chews, said Jessica Douglas, a spokeswoman for the PetSmart pet supply store chain based in Phoenix, Ariz.

Popular clothes at this time of year include a Santa suit, a Mrs. Claus dress and reindeer costumes. A lot of boots are sold to dog owners in cold weather states. Bling-wise, collars and leads are popular.

"Some ID tags are decorated with sparkly embellishments and they can be personalized so it's not just for looks," she said.

According to the poll, 62 percent of female owners said they would probably buy their pet a gift, while just 40 percent of the men said they would.

Janet Rowlands, 53, in Tulsa, Okla., is planning a Christmas celebration for 29 people and pets, including her four dogs. Jack Russell and rat terrier Boodroe, 7, is the only one who steals gifts from under the tree.

"He sees it as part of the fun," Rowlands said.

According to the poll, 59 percent of owners say pets are only a minor consideration when picking out holiday decorations, even though 14 percent reported that their pets have gotten into the decorations before.

There are no cranberries, popcorn or gingerbread men on the tree at Erica Peterson's home in Vass, N.C., because of Logan and the starfish, an ornament she and her husband got on their honeymoon.

On his first Christmas with the family, Logan, a male Labrador-chow, knocked the tree over and everything went flying so he could get to the starfish—apparently because it smelled fishy to him. All edible or scented ornaments were banned.

This year Logan will get a big butcher's bone, while Peterson's female Maltese named Bubbles, 13, will get rawhide sticks made like candy canes. Both will be wrapped and put under the tree.

Last year, Debra Jensen's Labrador named Nightmare and a German shepherd-Siberian Husky named Ticia got stockings with dog treats in them. This year, because her husband recently lost his job, there may not be a stocking, but there will still be treats—they can count on leftover ham.

"The dogs are our only children. I love my babies," said Jensen, 55, of Tulsa, Okla.

Pat McCauley figures his 4-year-old Shih Tzu named Crystal can survive the holidays without a present.

"I'm not going to buy the pet anything," said McCauley, 54, of Princeton, Ill., "I have a daughter who is 17 and she will buy the pets something but I surely wouldn't in any way, shape or form buy my pet a Christmas toy."

McCauley may sound like a Grinch, but he concedes buying pet gifts is not the most ridiculous idea he's heard.

"If I just had a pet by myself and my daughter wasn't around, I'd buy it one or two things a year, like a ball or a tug," he said.

The poll was conducted Oct. 1-5, 2009, by GfK Roper Public Affairs & Media. It involved telephone interviews on landline and cell phones with 1,166 pet owners nationwide, and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.9 percentage points for all pet owners.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

24 Yorkie, Maltese dogs seized from Lehigh Acres puppy mill adopted

Fort Myers News Press

All 24 of the Yorkie and Maltese dogs who were seized from a Lehigh Acres puppy mill have been adopted from Lee County Domestic Animal Services.

People started lining up for hours before the shelter opened at 11:30 a.m., said animal services spokeswoman Ria Brown, and within 40 minutes they had all found homes.

Most of nearly 30 animals seized from a puppy mill in Lehigh Acres this week are available for adoption now from Lee County Domestic Animal Services.

The animals – 25 dogs and four cats – were found living in squalor in a shed at 1606 Monroe Ave., according to spokeswoman Ria Brown. The discovery was made after the division received an anonymous call on Tuesday, Nov. 17.

The property is owned by Jess and Kathleen Holden, who were not charged, according to Brown.

They agreed to surrender the animals due to their inability to provided proper care and housing as required by county and state laws. Rather than petition the courts for custody and file charges Animal Services determined that it was in the animals’ best interest to accept their surrender so they could be properly vaccinated, de-wormed and treated for any other problems immediately and placed into appropriate permanent homes without delay. LCDAS will conduct regular checks to ensure that the owners never attempt to house animals in these conditions again. Charges will be filed for any future violations.

The Holdens told authorities they have been breeding and selling dogs for 25 years and moved to Lehigh in April of 2009.

The animals were found in cages inside a 200-square-foot shed. Conditions included poor ventilation, feces and urine on the floor and in the cages, flies and maggots on some of the food and feces.

The animals included 24 Yorkies and Maltese, one German Shepherd, and four cats. They have been examined, received veterinary care and were bathed.

Animal Services’ kennels open are open from 11:30 am to 3:30 pm Monday through Saturday for adoptions. The shelter is at 5600 Banner Drive, Fort Myers, next to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office off of Six Mile Cypress Parkway. View all animals available for adoption at or call 239-533-7387 (LEE-PETS) for further information.

Cape Coral police dog retires after nearly decade of service

Zuke steps down over arthritis

Cape Coral Daily Breeze

Zuke the Police Dog A senior member of the Cape Coral Police Department retired Wednesday, but the officer is a little different from his fellow co-workers: He stands on all fours.

German shepherd "Zuke," a trusted member of the K-9 Unit, is settling down to a normal life after nine years of service due to arthritis in his hips.

Zuke went out in grand fashion, though, getting a send off at City Hall from dignitaries including Mayor John Sullivan and Police Chief Rob Petrovich.

"This is an impressive record," Sullivan said. "He has a long history of battling crimes on many different levels."

Among Zuke's accomplishments:

- 461 narcotic searches.

- 273 narcotic arrests resulting from the searches.

- 224 tracks for criminals and missing or endangered persons.

- 67 apprehensions.

- 139 public demonstrations.

- Four stops in one month resulting in the seizure of more than 600 grams of marijuana.

- Tracked a suspect which led to the capture of a child rapist.

Born in 1999 in Czechoslovakia, Zuke's registered name is Vicko Z. Krkonossko.

Zuke has had two handlers during his time at the CCPD.

His current handler, Officer Jason Matyas, said the much loved and highly trained dog will spend retirement at his home with his 3-year-old son, Aiden.

"He gets to hang out with his new handler now," Matyas said. "He'll hang out and watch the house when I'm not there."

Monday, November 16, 2009

Feline Fun Fair draws cat lovers to the Cape

Cape Coral Daily Breeze

The first Feline Fun Fair was held at Four Freedoms Park this past weekend attracting cat lovers to the information and adoption-packed afternoon.

The event was hosted by Cape Dog Bakery & Cat House owners Lou and Anita Simmons and Cape Coral Parks & Recreation.

The Simmons recently added the Cape Coral's Cat House addition to their shop, which jump started a foster program with Lee County Domestic Animal Services at the Cape Dog Bakery.

"We always have kittens for adoption with Lee County Domestic Animal Services at the bakery," Anita said.

The Feline Fun Fair was held this year to help the Platinum Coast Cat Fanciers Association get the word out about their group and ultimately let individuals know about their Breeder Assist Program, along with the annual cat show that is held in July.

The association had long hair exotic cats, which are similar to persian cats, at the fair that were up for adoption.

The Platinum Coast Cat Fanciers Association, a local club, is apart of the Cat Fanciers' Association, which began in 1906 as the world's largest registry of pedigreed cats.

The local club currently has 13 members. They meet every fourth Wednesday at Mel's Diner in Fort Myers. The club encourages anyone who loves cats to join and attend the meetings.

Deb Kuchler, cat consultant and director of the Platinum Coast Cat Fanciers Association said the club participated in the Feline Fun Fair because they wanted to get information about the Breeder Assist Program out to the public.

The Cape Dog Bakery & Cat House hosts a Breeder Assist Program once a month for the Platinum Coast Cat Fanciers Association.

The Breeder Assist Program was started to help breeders seek help in situations that may be out of their control. The program helps by providing advice, food, physical assistance and placement of cats for those in need.

She explained that they also attended the fair because they did not have enough money to put on a cat show this year in Fort Myers, which they hope to start up again in 2010.

"Even though we do pedigree cats, we have rescue cats in the show," cat fanciers association member Becky Shields.

"We are not just pure breed people. We are feline people," Shields said.

Pine Island Animal Rescue had seven kittens between the ages of eight to eleven weeks old and some adult cats for adoption during the Feline Fun Fair.

Kathryn Markham said she wanted to attend the event to find homes for all the kittens she brought.

"We are hoping all these kittens will go today, so we can take more animals in," she said, since the shelter is currently at their capacity with the number of animals they can accept.

She said the Pine Island Animal Rescue has been in existence since Hurricane Charley hit Lee County. The shelter rescues animals that have no home and takes in animals that people drop off at their facility.

Markham said they are currently in desperate need of food donations for the animals.

For more information call 239-826-8093.

CatNap Manager Daryl Davis also had a table set up full of information for the Coral CatNap Inn and Coral Veterinary Clinic, P.A. during the fair.

The Coral CatNap Inn opened their doors in 2001 to provide a cat boarding facility for those who leave town and need someone to look after their animal.

She explained that they have enough room in their Coral CatNap Inn for 24 cats at one time. The Inn is $15.50 per day.

Davis said all cats that are boarded at the facility are required to have up-to-date rabies vaccination, a FVRCP vaccination and a bordatella vaccination.

Grooming services are also available, he said.

The services they offer include a bath, nail trim by clipping, comb out, ear cleaning, blow dry, sanitary clip, neat feet, belly clip, shave down, lion cut, which leaves the head and tail hair long, and a Santa clip, which is a body thinning and shaping cut.

Lee County Domestic Animal Services volunteer Vicki Conn also had a table set up at the festival to encouraged people to donate food for their animal food pantry.

"We supply food for those who would otherwise surrender their pets," Conn said. "We try to keep pets in their homes."

She said the food pantry is in desperate need of cat food, dog food, canned foods for both cats and dogs and cat litter.

"The basics is what we really need," she explained.

Cape Coral resident Barbara Hagan said she heard about the first Feline Fun Fair by reading the list of events in the newspaper. She said the festival sparked her attention because she is a cat lover.

Hagan said she currently owns one cat who is 14 years old.

"Cats are wonderful and when you get older they are the least demanding," she said.

Hagan strolled from one table to the next, checking out all the cats and gathering information that sparked her interest during the festival.

"For the first year, it is very nice," she said.

Hagan said she would "absolutely come next year" if the festival is held again.

"It got me out to discover something new," she explained. Hagan said she had recently moved from Fort Myers to Cape Coral.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Sticky the cat found wrapped in duct tape

Humans are very twisted. However, I can assure you this twisted story have a happy ending ...

A cat that was wrapped in duct tape and then dumped in a north Philadelphia woman's yard was later discovered covered so tightly from paw to tail in industrial-strength duct tape that she could not even walk.

Law enforcement officers brought the cat to the local Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PSPCA) shelter, where it took an hour to sedate the cat and then cut the tape off of her fur. They were able to successfully remove the duct tape and the cat, nicknamed "Sticky," is now doing well.

"She's doing great. She is really happy and playful, which leads us to believe she came from a household. 'Sticky' didn't even lose much fur when vets removed the duct tape," said Liz Williamson of the PSPCA.

"Sticky" is not available for adoption yet because the PSPCA is giving the owners some time to step forward and claim her.

The PSPCA wants to get to the bottom of this and find out who would do such a sick thing to an innocent animal - and I'm sure all pet lovers feel that way, too. They are offering a $1,000 reward to anyone who provides information leading to a conviction of the person or persons responsible. No arrests have been made and so far authorities don't have any useful leads. If you have any information about who may have done this, please call the animal cruelty hotline at 866.601.7722.

Hopefully, those responsible for harming this loving animal will be punished for their cruel actions.

If you want to see " Sticky the Cat," check out the video below. It shows how she looked when she was found and how great she looks now. Bravo to the woman who found her and to the rescuers who saved her!

Sticky the Cat

Believe me when I say, I do not know why anyone do such a thing to nice tabby cat like this. It is very sad. Who every do this should be wrapped in duct tape, neck to toe and thrown in holding cell for 48-hours, no food or water. See how they like it. Then we take half their skins off when we remove tape. Serve them right. Also need to be neutered so they do not breed more stupid humans.

Pet abuse is way too common. Do you know what to do if you suspect animal abuse?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Hero cat help save abused child

As you know, October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Again, I change the color of my blog to purple in support of this cause, which very special to me.

Today I want to tell you story 'bout a special cat named Oreo. Oreo belong to 9-year-old Beth* who was being sexually abused by her stepfather. No one knew...except Beth and her cat.

Oreo would bravely lie outside ehr door and night and hiss whenever her attacker appeared. In tryng to protect her, the loyal black and white cat also become victim of violence as he brutally kicked out of the way.

Beth finally have her day in court, but there problem. Oreo could not testify for his owner. Or could he?

Prosecuting attorney Allie Phillips have an idea. She take Oreo to be examined by a veternarian. The results were chilling. Sure enough, poor Oreo had sustained injuries constistant with being physically abused.

When the prosecutor submitted the veterinarian’s report to the jury as evidence showing a pattern of violence in the home, Beth’s allegations gained credibility. In a way, Oreo was able to testify, convincing the jury that the traumatized little girl had been telling the truth.

Beth’s stepfather was convicted and received a long prison sentence. Meanwhile, Beth and Oreo were finally able to experience what every child and animal deserves: a safe home.

There is a often a link between violence to humans in homes and violence to their animals as well. American Humane Society have a new program called "The Link" which help to give animals like Oreo a voice in unmasking and preventing abuse. You can read more bout this program HERE.

It is good that Beth's story have a happy ending. I would be much better if other stories reach a happy ending too.

Help break the silence. You can find out more bout Domestic Violence at the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence and find out what you can do to help!

(*This is a true story. However, the child’s name has been changed to protect her privacy.)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Travelin' Tales Tuesday

As you probably realize by now, the little humans have returned to this place they call "school". Mz. Ginger is an inner-city Kindergarden teacher in Broward County and every year, she tries to get 100 post cards to share with her class by the 100th day of school.

This year I thought we get a bit of an early start on the project. So if you could please send a post card to Mz. Ginger from where ever you are, that would be so pawsome of you! The kids really love seeing places they've never been, and may never get a chance to go to.

Here is the address to send the postcards to:

Ms. Brown's Class
Greynolds Park Elementary
1536 N.E. 179th Street
North Miami Beach, FL 33162

Of course, getting more than 100 postcards would be pawsome too!

We cats made the difference last year, and we can do it again this year! So please help and send your postcards!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Special Halloween Treat!

Halloween candy is absolutely forbidden for cats – lollipop sticks can get stuck in a throat and candy wrappers can cause an obstruction. But the feline in your life likes a treat, too, so here is a recipe that is healthy for your feline companion – and tasty, too.

Makes 18 treats

1/4 cup warm water
5 tablespoons parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons soft margarine
1 tablespoon cod liver oil
1 cup white flour
1/4 cup soy flour

Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.

Combine water, cheese, margarine and oil.

Add flour and form a dough.

Roll to 1/4 inch thick and cut with cookie cutter.

Bake at 300 degrees on an ungreased cookie sheet for 20-25 minutes or until cookies are lightly golden.

This recipes is for a special-occasion treat for your cat. it should not replace meals and should be offered sparingly.

If your cat has food allergies or special dietary requirements, check with your veterinarian before offering them.

If your cat is on a special diet, you may consult with your veterinarian and obtain a canned version of that diet. Often the canned formula can be rolled out, cut into shapes and baked. Most treats bake at 350 degrees F for 12 – 20 minutes or until firm to the touch.

(Special thanks to for this great recipe!)

Thursday, October 8, 2009

TV on Thursday

Very cute video of Stanley and his woofie friend.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Nearly Wordless Wednesday

Schizophrenia: I has it!

I not speaking
I not speaking to myself!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Weekend Cat Blogging # 226

As you know, it is coming up on that time of year again - the holiday known as Howl-N-Scream where the humans get dressed up and go house to house looking for candy. I would not mind the dress up part if they would give me Temptations when I go house to house, but I do not like these Snickers bars everyone seem to hand out.

I was thinking though, what should I dress up as this year if I decide to go looking for treats. reported in a recent article that the most popular costume search right now is for Michael Jackson.

Searches for the costume, which generally includes tight black pants, a leather jacket and, of course, a glittering glove, have gone up more than a 1000%, according to to the company.

Other popular dead celebrity costumes include Farrah Fawcett, Ed McMahon and infomercial pitchman Billy Mays.

Heath Ledger-inspired Joker costumes, as well as the Dark Knight, may also reappear this year.

Meanwhile, diehard Twilight and True Blood fans have breathed new life into classic vampire attire, and reality celebs John and Kate Gosselin will likely be well represented on the trick or treat circuit.

Purrsonally, I go for more traditional costumes such as a witch or a vampire. Tabby brofur like the witches, he is afraid of vampires. So maybe I will go as vampire - but not a sparkly twilight one - because I do not like those books.

Although a Dark Knight costume maybe not be bad and would go well with my black furs. What you think?

One cat who do not lack for costumes is Daisy. She has many. Sometimes she even let them speak for her!

Anyway, I know I get late start for Weekend Cat Blogging, but at 2:00 pm on Sunday, I only have two submissions. So this going to be very short round up!

One hopes my fellow house panther, Luna, at Cat Synth is having better turn out, even though she is having computer problems. Happily, teknikal support send over nice bi-color cat to fix. So Luna can take all important cat nap!

Cat of Nine Tales did not submit this post, but it is the story of Snafu and it is a good one. If you have not read, you should certainly do so.

I am having snafu at my house too, as I need to have good brushing but we cannot find my furminator. Tabby brofur not like the furmintor...I think he hide it! My bean have combed me, but it not the same as a good furminating!

Another thing I like is a good roll in the dirt. So does Meowza. Of course, once you do that, you have to give yourself a good grooming.

Vincent is doing some rolling around over at Judi Mind Over Matter

Patchouli, the daredevil kitty is up high over at Sidewalk Shoes!

The Island Cats are not so enterprising, as they take it Easy on Sunday.

Oh No! Most terrible news! Sam Black and Mr. Tigger have run away from home. Please send lots of purrs and purrayers that they will find there way back soon! I do hope they not trying to come and visit me! That is long trip from Texas!

That pretty much do it for Weekend Cat Blogging #226. We not get lot of submissions, very sad. If you need more cats, Luna has the big Ferris Wheel turning for Carnival of the Cats, while Sam Black and Mr. Tigger are hosting Bad Kitty Cats Festival of Chaos - and boy are they ever bad kitty cats today!

Also I wish to remind you that earlier this week, I report on the HAPPY Bill. This very impurrtant bill in the House would allow pet caregivers to take a credit on their tackes, much like the child care credit. We wish to urge all humans to write to their representative in support of this very impurrtant bill!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Weekend Cat Blogging!


I am so sorry I am late getting this up. I have been busy digging in these boxes here, trying to decide what I want to be for Howl-N-Scream. Perhaps you can help me decide. What are you going to be this year for Howl-N-Scream?

Please a comment and let me know. And happy Weekend Cat Bloggging!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

HAPPY Bill would allow Pet Care Deduction!

From the Naples Daily News:

Pets could soon pay for themselves if a bill that allows owners to deduct the cost of caring for their animal’s passes.

If approved, the Humanity and Pets Partnered Through the Years (HAPPY) Act would amend the Internal Revenue Code to allow a tax deduction of up to $3,500 per year for pet care expenses, including veterinary care, according the House Resolution 3501.

“I think it’s great,” said Stacey Huber a veterinarian at Animal Oasis Veterinary Hospital.

Huber, who learned about the bill through a reporter, said veterinary care has gotten expensive for people and, many times, pet insurance doesn’t cover some of the expenses.

If approved, Huber said this tax deduction could help pet owners who have pets that have illnesses and diseases and need long-term treatment.

The tax deduction could be nearly as much as a deduction for a child.

Last year, a taxpayer could claim a qualified child, who is 19 or under 24 and a full-time student, as a dependant for $3,500. In 2009, the deduction will climb to $3,650, according to IRS spokesman Mike Dobzinski of Plantation.

“I don’t think most Americans spend as much on pet care as on child care,” Huber said.

As people are trimming their expenses now, Huber said the bill could allow people to do preventative care for their pets more often, such as dental cleaning or blood work.

A typical flea prevention and heartworm medication supply for a year costs about $200.

Pet owners would be allowed to deduct all their pet care expenses for all of their qualified pets, according to the bill. Qualified pets would have to be legally owned, domesticated and alive, according to the bill. Exceptions include any animal used for research or owned or used in conjunction with a trade or business, according to the bill.

U.S. Rep. Thaddeus McCotter, R-Mich, introduced the bill on July 31. It was referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means.

McCotter could not be reached for comment. Neither could Rep. Connie Mack, R-Fort Myers or Rep Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Miami.

Pet owners know how expensive medical care can be.

Naples resident Nancy White supports the bill because it could possibly offset costs for her domestic American shorthaired 16-year-old cat named Happy.

“I think it’s a good idea, as long as people don’t abuse it,” White, 63 said.

On average, if Happy doesn’t get sick, White spends about $300 a year for his check-ups. But, when he does get sick, the bills increase.

“In today’s economy, I think that people have to make a choice between their pet and themselves,” she said.

After hearing about the bill, several pet owners at the Rover Run Dog Park at Veteran’s Park on Immokalee Road said they would support it.

“It would be nice,” Michaela Henning, 32, said.

The East Naples resident said she doesn’t know if she spends $3,500 a year on her 14-month-old Jack Russell terrier named Vito but she said expenses quickly add up. Henning estimated spending about $2,000 a year on food and veterinary expenses.

Henning added that instead of a tax deduction, she would prefer to have another dog park in Collier County.

Marc Carestia, 22, said a tax deduction could be a good thing but he could see it being abused.

The East Naples resident has three dogs, an 11-month-old Boston Terrier named Skittles; a 3-year-old Catahoula mix named Candy and Rocko, a 2 1/2 year old Doberman mix. He estimated spending an average of $1,500 to $2,000 on his pets, if they remain healthy without needing additional medical visits.

Alan Grosshart, a veterinarian at Petsmart in Naples, said he has seen many pets being left behind and euthanized because of the current economy and would support the bill if it could prevent that from happening.

“What I would like to see is more affordable pet insurance for pets,” Grosshart said.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Sarah the Cheetah, Fastest Mammal on Earth

From Yahoo Buzz....

Cheetahs always win.

Usain Bolt may get his share of million-dollar jackpots for being a world champ sprinter, but he's got nothing on 8-year-old Sarah. The Cincinnati Zoo's cheetah ambassador just beat the 2001 land-speed world record for mammals.

A male cheetah in South Africa covered 100 meters in 6.19 seconds. Sarah didn't beat that just once, but twice: She first clocked in at 6.16 seconds and then 6.13 seconds—which, by the way, bested Bolt's August sprint by more than 3 seconds. And that's from a girl who has been in captivity pretty much her whole life.

Sarah's feat helped call attention to the species' endangered numbers. According to the zoo, the spotted felines' population has dropped from 100,000 back in 1900 to about one-tenth that number. Cincinnati has been doing its part to nurture more cubs than anywhere else. Not so coincidentally, the zoo was home to another record holder: Moya, who died this past January, held the title for a year before his brother Nyana (over in South Africa) snagged it. Now Sarah's got bragging rights.

She may not rest easy for long. Zaza, an 8-year-old female in South Africa, will be throwing down the gauntlet over in South Africa when the weather clears up, either later this month or in early October. Meanwhile, here are two videos of Sarah's sprint—a quickie AP version and the Cincinnati Zoo's longer one.

Click here to see the Video!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

World's oldest dog dies in NY at 21 — or 147

From the Associated Press:

NEW YORK – A wire-haired dachshund that held the record as the world's oldest dog and celebrated its last birthday with a party at a dog hotel and spa has died at age 21 — or 147 in dog years.

The dog, named Chanel, died Friday of natural causes at her owners' home in suburban Port Jefferson Station, on Long Island.

Chanel, as stylish as her legendary namesake, wore tinted goggles for her cataracts in her later years and favored sweaters because she was sensitive to the cold, owners Denice and Karl Shaughnessy said Monday.

The playful dachshund was only 6 weeks old when Denice Shaughnessy, then serving with the U.S. Army, adopted her from a shelter in Newport News, Va.

Along with her owner, Chanel spent nine years on assignment in Germany, where she became adept at stealing sticks of butter from kitchen countertops and hiding them in sofa cushions in the living room, Shaughnessy said. She also liked chocolate, usually considered toxic to dogs, Shaughnessy said.

"She once ate an entire bag of Reese's peanut butter cups, and, you see, she lived to be 21, so go figure," Shaughnessy added.

Karl Shaughnessy nominated Chanel for the title of world's oldest dog after noticing the Guinness World Records book had no record.

Guinness World Records officials presented Chanel with a certificate as the world's oldest dog at a Manhattan birthday bash hosted by a private pet food company in May.

Chanel loved the party, especially the cake, which had a peanut butter flavor and had been made for dogs, Denice Shaughnessy said.

Chanel exercised daily and ate home-cooked chicken with her dog food, but good care wasn't entirely responsible for her long life, said her owners, who attributed God.

"Dogs are God's angels sent here to look out for us," Denice Shaughnessy said.

A dog from New Iberia, La., named Max, is vying for the record of world's oldest dog. Owner Janelle Derouen said Max marked his 26th birthday on Aug. 9. She said Guinness World Records officials were reviewing documents to authenticate his age; a Guinness World Records official in London didn't immediately answer an e-mail from The Associated Press requesting confirmation of that.

When asked the secret to her dog's long life, Derouen said she was shocked he's still with her.

"I have five kids, and all my kids are grown and gone," she said. "Now my grandkids are playing with this dog."

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

If you could talk...

What would you say? That's what most cat caretakers want to know. Given the gift of speech, what would their cat say to them.

A recent poll shows that 17% think that we would say "I Love You." Of course, we do say this, each in our own special way.

Another 12% thinks their cat would be asking for a lap, or (11%) petting, (10%) a sample of human food, and (10%) a treat.

Most of the attention getting categories all fell together.

Myself, I am usually asking for a treat, or to go outside. Tabby brofur is asking to fed, to left alone so he can sleep, or to go outside.

Mostly we would not be saying "I love you". That reserved for special occasions, not everyday chatter.

Here is the results of the poll:

* I love you 17%
* Sit down so I can get on your lap 12%
* Give me a nice petting now 11%
* How about a little of whatever you are eating? 10%
* How about a treat? 10%
* Shut up and feed me 8%
* Let me outside 7%
* Don't mess with me or I'll bite/scratch you 5%
* Why do you work so much? 5%
* Not so loud - I'm napping 5%
* Hurry home - I gotta go 1%
* Go to work so I can nap 2%
* Other: 7%

While we are not the sort of animals to go chatting around on our blue tooth headsets like humans, or even flapping about singing like birds, we do communicate quite well.

Body language is our biggest tool as we make only a limited amount of vocal sounds. Tail signals, posture and other factors display our moods and our messages. Trust me, few caretakes mistake our meeting when we say "FEED ME".

Learning our other signals just takes a bit more observation. We are always very clear and concise about what we are saying.

So while you think we are wordless creatures, we really are not. Just not quite as chatty as say...a lap woofie.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Save Money, Give me treats!

It seem like everyone these days is looking to save money in one way or another. Dr. Jon and the staff wrote an article giving tips to save money on pet care during this recession.

If you haven't read it - go to 9 Tips to Save Money on Pet Care. It has some good tips.

One way to save money is to spend less on cat treats. Some pet owners spend a LOT of money on treats. (But then, we are good cat, cats and deserve lots of treats.)

Here are a few tips on how you can minimize what you spend on treats while stilling have the pleasure of giving treats:

1. Feed less treats. You don't have to stop feeding them but consider feeding less. Treats are fun to give but there is nothing in them that your cat needs. Cat treats are similar to a candy bar or snack for us. We might like it but we don't need it.

2. Smaller treats. Instead of feeding less frequent treats - break them up in smaller pieces and feed smaller treats. (Try this with my Temptations and I break YOU into smaller pieces.)

3. Make your own treats. One way to cut costs and have fun is to make your own treats. I'll even share some great cat treat recipes with you. These are easy to make and all natural so you know exactly what is in them.

Homemade Cat Treats Recipes
Healthy Cat Treats
Homemade Cat Treats for the Senior Cat

Remember that I will be happy to taste any treats you make before you give them to your own cat! I take my taste testing service very seriously, so you know I will give you good recommendation if you make your treats right!

Monday, August 24, 2009

An update on our Internets

As you know, we have problems now for like last two months. Well, Friday night the computer die. So bean have to reformat the WHOLE thing and then put everything back on it. She is still putting things back on it, but...

We now have working internets again and can go visit blogs like we could not do before. We also have three (!) working internets browers - Firefox, MSIE and Opera! So I am furry pleased by this.

Thank you for putting up with us while our internets not working. So we could get to post more now!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Dyed Dog Days of Summer

First there was painted cats. Now from the people who bring you contaminated pet food come another fashionable trend - Dyed Dogs.

People in China are turning to their pets to relieve the stress of their fast paced lives and also to replace the children they cannot have. Couples in China are limited to one child each.

The Daily Mail reported that "In the town of Wuhan in central China's Hubei province, pet owners are taking their beloved dogs to grooming parlors where the poor creatures are not just given a shampoo and cut -- but a full-on, multi-colored fur job."

You can also get a pawticure for your pooch, and I don't think they are using soft claws for this!

There has been a nearly 500% increase in pet spending from 1999 to 2008 in China. Ironically, the country recently drafted proposed legislation on animal cruelty -- China's first such law. Penalties under the proposed law include a monetary fine of up to 6,000 yuan ($877) and two weeks imprisonment.

No word yet on whether tie dying your doggie considered cute or cruel in China, but Boulder, Colorado has put its foot down. Last year, a woman was fined $1,000 for dying her poodle pink -- in honor of breast cancer awareness, the woman claimed. (The matter was later settled out of court.)

China has also undertaken strict measures to control its animal population — it will become compulsory for data chips to be implanted in pets so that owners can be found if their pets are found abandoned. I wonder if this includes woofies who run away from home on purpose?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Dog hailed as hero for guiding rescuers to owner's body

From Reuters Life!:

SYDNEY – A mongrel has proven that dogs really are man's best friend when he helped rescuers find the body of his owner who was killed in a car crash in Australia.

Moja, a small mixed breed, was in the truck with his owner Henry Drew when it crashed off a highway in Queensland and landed in dense shrubs.

The animal sat by Drew's body, which was hidden by trees, barking incessantly for two days until a farmer went to investigate the cause of the noise.

"If it was not for the man's dog, he may not have been found for some time because his truck was completely covered by trees and our helicopter couldn't see it," a spokesperson for AGL Action Rescue told Reuters.

"This bloke heard the dog barking, it was literally sitting by the man's side," the spokesperson said.

Drew had been reported missing by his wife after he did not answer his mobile phone. Rescue helicopters worked with police to search for the him until the farmer called.

I am sorry it sad ending that the woofie's human died in crash. Cats have stayed by their owners too and help them, but we can't bark and our meows not really that loud.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Survivor Sam the Koala loses fight for life

A very sad story this morning from Rueters:

SYDNEY (Reuters Life!) – Sam the Koala, who won the hearts of the world when video footage of her rescue from Australia's deadly bushfires six months ago hit the Internet, died on Thursday after losing a second battle for survival.

The badly burned koala, filmed drinking from a volunteer fire fighter's water bottle, became a symbol of hope for the survivors of Australia's worst ever bushfires that killed about 173 people and destroyed more than 2,000 dwellings, leaving 7,5000 homeless,

But just months after her rescue from the fires in the state of Victoria, Sam was diagnosed with cysts linked to the life-threatening disease Chlamydia that has ravaged Australia's koala population.

The four-year-old koala was to undergo surgery on Thursday to remove the cysts but John Butler of the Morwell Vet Clinic discovered that Sam had severe changes in her urinary and reproductive tract that were non-operable.

"Unfortunately Sam has been put to sleep. It's very, very sad," Peita Elkhorne of TressCox Lawyers told Reuters on behalf of the Southern Ash Wildlife Shelter.

"It was so severe that there was no possible way to be able to manage her pain."

The debilitating illness Urogenital Chlamydiosis affects 50 percent of Australia's koala population altough it is not known how koalas have come to be infected with the bacterium.

(Reporting by Pauline Askin, Editing by Belinda Goldsmith)

I cannot help but wonder if this disease is related to the hole in the ozone layer over Australia.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

"Gidget" the Taco Bell woofie goes to bridge

From OMG! news on Yahoo!:

Gidget, the famed Chihuahua who appeared in Taco Bell ads, died Tuesday at the age of 15.

Karen McElhatton, Gidget's owner, tells the dog was with her trainer, Sue Chipperton, watching television when she began making "strange noises" and suffered a stroke.

Before the dog's death, "She had a good day and was running around as normal," McElhatton tells "We're happy that she was very well off right until the end."

Gidget -- whose "Yo Quiero Taco Bell" spots debuted in September 1997 -- also had a cameo in Legally Blonde 2, in addition to appearing in other TV spots.

We enjoyed working with Gidget, and she will be missed by many," a Taco Bell spokesperson tells Us in a statement. "Our deepest sympathies go out to her owners and fans."

The dog had an exceptionally happy life, her owner says.

"She lived like a queen," McElhatton tells Us. "She had a great life. We're very sad. She's a wonderful little dog."

McElhatton tells Us the dog will likely be cremated.

Adds McElhatton: "She was old. Of course, we were hoping she'd be around for a few more years, but if you have a dog that lives that long, you can't really complain."

This has not been a good month to be a celebrity - either human or canine!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

NYC teen admits to leaving kitten in oven to die

From the Assoicated Press:

NEW YORK – A New York City teenager has admitted that she failed to let a kitten out of an oven after a friend put the animal inside and left it to roast to death.

After pleading guilty to charges of animal cruelty and attempted burglary on Wednesday, 17-year-old Cheyenne Cherry confronted a row of animal activists outside the courtroom. Cherry stuck out her tongue and told the activists that the kitten named Tiger Lily was "dead."

Authorities say Cherry and a 14-year-old friend ransacked a Bronx apartment before putting the cat in the oven, where it cried and scratched before dying.

The 14-year-old was charged with aggravated animal cruelty and burglary in the May 6 incident.

Cherry will serve a year in jail under a plea bargain.

A year? A year? This girl should be put in oven and roasted to death as well. She obviously has no remorse.

People are very sick and this is just one example of it. Pook kitten. Stay well over the bridge. We will think of you often. You are a martyr to our cause!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Pet Airways takes off!

Next time I wish to go visit my furriends, I do not have to take road trip. Now I can fly first class!

The Associated Press reports that Pet Airways has left the runway!

Pet Airways will fly a pet between five major cities — New York, Washington, Chicago, Denver, and Los Angeles. The $250 one-way fare is comparable to pet fees at the largest U.S. airlines.

For owners the big difference is service. Dogs and cats will fly in the main cabin of a Suburban Air Freight plane, retooled and lined with carriers in place of seats. Pets (about 50 on each flight) will be escorted to the plane by attendants that will check on the animals every 15 minutes during flight. The pets are also given pre-boarding walks and bathroom breaks. And at each of the five airports it serves, the company has created a "Pet Lounge" for future fliers to wait and sniff before flights.

The company will operate out of smaller, regional airports in the five launch cities, which will mean an extra trip for most owners dropping off their pets if they are flying too. Stops in cities along the way means the pets will take longer to reach a destination than their owners.

A trip from New York to Los Angeles, for example, will take about 24 hours. On that route, pets will stop in Chicago, have a bathroom break, play time, dinner, and bunk for the night before finishing the trip the next day.

Amanda Hickey of Portland, Ore. is one of the new airline's first customers. Her seven-year-old terrier-pinscher mix Mardi and 2-year-old puggle Penny are taking their first flight soon.

Hickey said the service was a welcome alternative to flying her dogs in cargo when she transplants them from her soon-to-be Denver home to Chicago to stay while she and her fiance travel to Aruba to get married.

"For a little bit more money, I have peace of mind," she said.

It was a stressful experience in a cargo hold that spurred Alysa Binder and Dan Wiesel to start their airline. Their Jack Russell terrier, Zoe, flew once in cargo and Binder said they worried about how the dog was doing, but were unable to check on her or get information. The couple soon started looking for a better solution.

"One time in cargo was enough for us," Binder said, walking through an airplane hangar as Zoe trotted in front of her. "We wanted to do something better."

The company, which will begin with one flight in each of its five cities, is looking to add more flights and cities soon. In the next three years, Binder hopes to fly to 25 locations.

The two say they're overwhelmed with the response. Flights on Pet Airways are already booked up for the next two months.

But today, the first flight for the husband-and-wife team's Pet Airways, the first-ever all-pet airline, took off from Republic Airport in Farmingdale, N.Y.

Betsy Saul, co-founder of, which has ranked the pet-friendliness of airlines for three years, said she's excited about the expected impact Pet Airways will have on pet travel across major airlines.

"The entire industry will stretch because of Pet Airways," she said. "It's a challenge that says 'let's make this (experience) better for pets.'"

Among the big U.S. carriers that offer pet services, AirTran, Spirit, Southwest and JetBlue only allow pets to fly in the cabin. Most U.S. airlines charge between $100 and $125, but Delta and Northwest charge $150 for cabin trips. AirTran is the cheapest among big carriers at $69.

Now, all I have to do is decide where I want to go!

PeeEss: For those that have suggested Google Chrome, we are running a Win2000 system and they do not make Google Chrome for that version. That also why we can't upgrade MSIE. We kind of stuck. I do not know Firefox's problem. I work fine and now suddenly it do not.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Cats Do Control Humans, Study Finds


If you've ever wondered who's in control, you or your cat, a new study points to the obvious. It's your cat.

Household cats exercise this control with a certain type of urgent-sounding, high-pitched meow, according to the findings.

This meow is actually a purr mixed with a high-pitched cry. While people usually think of cat purring as a sign of happiness, some cats make this purr-cry sound when they want to be fed. The study showed that humans find these mixed calls annoying and difficult to ignore.

"The embedding of a cry within a call that we normally associate with contentment is quite a subtle means of eliciting a response," said Karen McComb of the University of Sussex. "Solicitation purring is probably more acceptable to humans than overt meowing, which is likely to get cats ejected from the bedroom."

They know us

Previous research has shown similarities between cat cries and human infant cries.

McComb suggests that the purr-cry may subtly take advantage of humans' sensitivity to cries they associate with nurturing offspring. Also, including the cry within the purr could make the sound "less harmonic and thus more difficult to habituate to," she said.

McComb got the idea for the study from her experience with her own cat, who would consistently wake her up in the mornings with a very insistent purr. After speaking with other cat owners, she learned that some of their cats also made the same type of call. As a scientist who studies vocal communication in mammals, she decided to investigate the manipulative meow.

Tough to test

Setting up the experiments wasn't easy. While the felines used purr-cries around their familiar owners, they were not eager to make the same cries in front of strangers. So McComb and her team trained cat owners to record their pets' cries - capturing the sounds made by cats when they were seeking food and when they were not. In all, the team collected recordings from 10 different cats.

The researchers then played the cries back for 50 human participants, not all of whom owned cats. They found that humans, even if they had never had a cat themselves, judged the purrs recorded while cats were actively seeking food - the purrs with an embedded, high-pitched cry - as more urgent and less pleasant than those made in other contexts.

When the team re-synthesised the recorded purrs to remove the embedded cry, leaving all else unchanged, the human subjects' urgency ratings for those calls decreased significantly.

McComb said she thinks this cry occurs at a low level in cats' normal purring, "but we think that cats learn to dramatically exaggerate it when it proves effective in generating a response from humans." In fact, not all cats use this form of purring at all, she said, noting that it seems to most often develop in cats that have a one-on-one relationship with their owners rather than those living in large households, where their purrs might be overlooked.

The results were published in the July 14 issue of the journal Current Biology.

(Note: we are sorry we have not been online much, be we still cannot surf blogs because Firefox crash every time we go near Blogger. We needs help!)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Woofie Wednesday and Wrascally Wabbits

A couple of news stories today. The first one from Rueters, is about a dog who did his duty, even after being shot.

BERLIN – A dog in Germany shot by a drunken man with a gun took swift revenge by biting off the end of the man's nose, authorities said on Monday.

Police said the armed man was snooping at night in the yard of a house in Stadtlauringen in northern Bavaria when he shot the Bernese mountain dog from point-blank range.

Before collapsing, the dog leapt at the 39-year-old man and bit off the end of his nose, a local police spokesman said.

Bleeding profusely, the man called police and was taken for treatment in a nearby hospital. His motives for being in the yard were unclear, police said.

Doctors removed a bullet from the dog's shoulder and discharged [him] from a clinic after an operation lasting several hours.

Now that is what I would call a GOOD Dog! He probably deserves a whole box of treats. Do they have Temptations for woofies? If not, what kind of treats they get?

Meanwhile, in Rio Rancho New Mexico, the Associated Press reports that A New Mexico woman with an affinity for rabbits has run afoul of the law after her rascally pets started multiplying like, well, rabbits. Rio Rancho police said Monday that Nancy Haseman was cited under an ordinance that allows five pets per household after an animal control officer found 334 bunnies hopping around in her yard.

The officer spotted the animals last month after a neighbor complained about rabbits eating her garden.

Haseman says her husband rescued a rabbit 12 years ago after a neighbor abandoned it, then the couple began rescuing more bunnies.

She says they kept the males separate from the females, but the males hopped the fence and things got "out of control."

Haseman says the couple hoped to help the animals.

Rescue groups have found homes for about half the Haseman rabbits.

That's lot of eastern bunnies! What? They in the west? Oh well, then that a lot of western bunnies!

(When the western bunny come bring treats? No one tell me 'bout this before. Needs investigating!)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Tail Talk Tuesday

Once again, I have more "tales" that people believe about cats. Are they true or not?

1. Cats should have a litter before they are spayed.

This is not true. Cats that have a litter before they are spayed are not better for it in any way. In fact, spayed cats are healthier and have eliminated the risk for life-threatening uterine infections.

2. Street cats are always healthier than purebred cats.

This is not true. Both purebred and "street" cats can be unhealthy. Both can have diseases, however, many mixed breed "domestic" cats do not have many of the genetic diseases common in purebred lines.

3. All cats prefer canned food.

Some cats do but some cats will only eat dry food. I purr-fur canned myself, and so does tabby brofur!

4. Cats cannot be trained.

This is not true. Cats are very smart and can be trained to do tricks.

If you do not believe me, watch this crew of performing cats down at sunset in Key West...

Not to mention, look at how well they have that human trained to do stupid tricks!

5. Cats like tasty food.

Cats have poor taste buds and eat primarily based on their sense of smell. Trust me, if we had good sense of taste, grooming would probably not be so pleasant for us!

6. Cats will let you know when they are sick.

This is not true. We generally are very good at hiding that we are sick. This is a survival instinct, as we do not wish appear vulnerable to "prey". Often by the time we show you that we are sick, our disease or condition is quite advanced.

7. Cats don't need heartworm prevention.

This is not true. Cats can get heartworm disease, even indoor cats. Heartworm disease is spread by mosquitoes, which can come inside.

8. Cats don't need litter box trained – they naturally know where to go.

There is a natural instinct for many cats; however, not all cats understand the litter box concept. Usually a mama cat will teach her kittens. A feral cat, that has never used litter box before, might need to be shown how to use it.

9. Cats are happier and healthier when they are outdoors.

This is not necessarily true. Many cats - myself included - are happy being outside at certain times, especially when the weather is good. However during bad weather – we would all prefer to be inside. But cats are defiantly usually not healthier when outdoors. The average lifespan of strictly outdoor cats is estimated to be approximately 1 year of age; indoor-outdoor cats about 3 – 6 years and indoor only cats have an average lifespan closer to 13 – 15 years.

I am indoor-outdoor cat but I am very street wise and and have lived much, much longer than average indoor-outdoor cat.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Florida Cat Killer Arrested, Charged

18 year old Tyler Hayes Weinman was arrested and charged with the killing mutilating of cats in two South Florida communities.

He is charged with 19 counts of animal cruelty and improperly disposing of an animal body and four counts of burglary related to the deaths.

The teen, whose parents are divorced, lived in both of the communities where the killing occurred. Evidence seized in the case includes the finding of cutting tools in his room, evidence of scratch marks on his body and the use of a tracking device on his car which puts him in a close proximity to the scene of many of the killings.

An arrest report shows Weinman was arrested for marijuana possession and driving with a suspended license on May 15 in a separate incident, just days after authorities said their investigation into the cat killings began. He was also twice arrested as a juvenile, but authorities have not released the details of those cases.

Some people feel he is innocent and is being railroaded by the police...but certainly, the fact that the killing were limited to the two communities in which he lived and occurred during the time he was living in each, is pretty damaging circumstantial evidence.

In most cases, the bodies of the cats were left in plain sight for their families to find - near their homes, on sidewalks, in the front yards, sometimes even on their doorsteps. Despite the arrest, there have two more kills and police suspect the teen may have an accomplice. As such, the evidence in the case has been sealed by court order.

One pet owner, Donna Gleason, said her family cat, Tommy, was "partially skinned" and left dead in her yard.

"Part of his skin was missing underneath ... and part of his legs," she said.

Cats are being urged to stay inside until the person or persons responsible are caught.

If convicted, Weinman could face a sentence of 158 years in prison, State Attorney's Office spokeswoman Terry Chavez said.

"The cat killings weren't something I expected of anyone who's sane," said friend Vincent Warger, 18. "With him he was a nice guy. He was friendly. It's such a violent thing. I just couldn't see it happening from him."

Many people said similar things of Ted Bundy, a serial killer who is well known for his vicious attacks on humans in Florida. It is often noted that serial killers get their start by inflicting pain and suffering on cats before they move on to bigger prey.

Experts say cruelty toward cats, as opposed to other animals, can fulfill a deeper need for control. Cats, unlike dogs, can be more difficult to control. They don't come when they're called and are often more independent, said Dr. Randall Lockwood of The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and author of "Forensic Investigation of Animal Cruelty."

Currently the teen is under house arrest after being fitted with an ankle bracelet for electronic monitoring.

The teens father maintains his son's innocence.

He also expressed his condolences to pet owners who lost their cats. "We are cat owners ourselves. We love our pets," he said.

"We certainly understand the grief that other cat owners are going through, and we sympathize with them, but it is not our son," he added.

"We've seen him play with our pets for years and he's a great kid and he plays with pets and he's fine with them," he said.

This is also seen in serial Killer cases. Bundy for example worked as a crisis center volunteer, and was known for being quite popular and charismatic.

I doubt the police would have arrested this individual without a body of evidence against him. Hopefully, the person or persons responsible for these crimes are caught and are taken out of society at large, before they can move to killing humans.

Kitten discovered in Boston mailbox

I do not think this is what was meant by International Cat in Box Day....

From the Associated Press News Services:

Kitten in Mailbox BOSTON – Officials said a two-pound, eight-week-old kitten was dropped in a public mailbox in Boston and later found unharmed among envelopes and packages. According to the MSPCA Animal Care and Adoption Center, the kitten they're calling "Postina" likely was stuffed Friday through a small opening of the mailbox and dropped several feet below.

A U.S. Postal Service letter carrier discovered Postina on Saturday during a scheduled afternoon pick-up.

The MSPCA is offering Postina for adoption after several days of nourishment and a round of vaccinations.

Animal abandonment in Massachusetts is punishable by up to a $2,500 fine and 5 years in prison.

The MSPCA said there has been a 48 percent increase in pet owners citing financial reasons for surrendering their pets.

It cute kitten. I very happy it not hurt after being stuffed in mail box. What if someone had drop package on its head?

Friday, June 19, 2009

Diamond in a Box

Boxed Diamond

Here I am in box. I do not sit in box much, would much rather be up high. Now, if you put box up high, that would good.

Boxed Diamond

Oh no...what is that tabby brofur of mine up to now. Must go see! Later!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Woofie Wednesday Freebie

For those of you that have Woofies, my bean have made a mini-kit that you can get for FREE on her blog. It is called Patriotic Pup and it is furry cute:

Patriotic Pup Registered & Protected

You don't really have to be a woofie though to enjoy the kit. Their are five papers with bone and paw print motif, and while the bones certainly are woofie oriented, the paw prints can be used with cat too. And there is Uncle Sam's Hat sticker you can put on to make yourself look patriotic!

And the best part is, my bean make nice fireworks that do not go BOOM! and hurt our ears.

You also get 3 ribbons and 3 bows, 2 frames, 2 "Fireworks" flowers, 1 star curtain, 5 stick pins, 2 fireworks, and a flag sticker and 4th of July sticker, plus the Uncle Sam's Hat and two patriotic pup stickers.

And it free - because America is Land of the Free - so you just need to download!

Just go to Digicats to get the freebie!

And if you get your bean to dress you up with it, let me know so that I can seeeeeeeeee!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Tail Talk Tuesay

Today, I want to talk to you about some old wives' tales about cats. At first this issue confuse me, because I do not know of any old wives having tails. Horns and cloven feet, yes, but not tails - barbed, bobbed, or otherwise.

But then my bean laugh and say no, no, not THOSE kind of tails! So then it make more sense!

There are countless theories and ideas out there on cats and cat care. What should you believe? Is it true or is it merely an old wives' tale that has mutated as it has been passed along?

Listed below are several common cat myths, old wives' tales, and legends and the truth or lack of truth they contain.

1. Cats can suck the breath from a baby. – NOT true! Cats have no intentions or ability to suck the breath from a baby or anyone else for that matter. You should, however, be cautious of allowing a pet to sleep with a small child, in case of other inadvertent injuries.

2. Pregnant women should not scoop the litter box. – This has a lot of truth, but there is NO need to get rid of your cat. Toxoplasmosis is a parasite that a cat can carry without showing signs. This parasite, which can be acquired by handling their feces, is a concern for pregnant women because it can be detrimental to a developing fetus. While it is best for someone other than the pregnant woman to scoop the litter box, it is generally safe if scooped at least once every 24 hours. Pregnant women must also be cautious of this parasite when gardening and handling raw meat. Wearing gloves is best.

3. Cats cause schizophrenia. – This is NOT true! Pets are actually very helpful to the mental health of humans.

4. Cats can see ghosts. – There is no scientific evidence of this. We do have keener eyesight than humans, so we probably see things they can't and they think we are reacting to seeing a ghost.

5. If you have multiple male cats, they will spray and mark. – This is possible, but not necessarily true. Male and sometimes even female cats living by themselves will mark. Neutering before sexual maturity is the best way to prevent marking behavior.

6. Milk is good for cats. – A cat eating a high-quality food should not need milk. Cow's milk contains more lactose than a cat can tolerate, and will often cause diarrhea. If you insist on drinking milk, milk made for cats, such as Catsip, is best for you.

So now you know the truth about these old wives tales. Please note that no old wives were harmed in the writing of this article.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Preventing Heat Stroke

Another problem you might run into in the summer is heat stroke.

Heat stroke is a condition arising from extremely high body temperature (rectal temperature of 105 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit), which leads to nervous system abnormalities (such as lethargy, weakness, collapse or coma). Abnormally high body temperature (also called hyperthermia) develops after increased muscular activity with impaired ability to give off heat due to high heat and humidity or respiratory obstruction.

It is more common in dogs but can occurs in cats as well.

First of all, no pet - dog or cat - should EVER be left in a car unattended. Temperatures in vehicles can quickly soar past 120 degrees and will kill you.

If you much be kept in a PTU for any length of time, make sure you are in a well ventilated area at all times and out of the direct sun. If your human is uncomfortable in an area or room, than you probably are too.

Also, make sure you always have access to plenty of fresh clean water.

I do not like these Drinkwell Drinking Fountains they sell, because I do not like running water, but some cats do. If you are interested, Click HERE for a special offer from Pet Product Advisor and save $15 on A Drinkwell 360!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Summer Skin Care

Did you know you can get sunburned? If left outdoors too long, especially white cats or hairless cats, sunburns can develop. If left untreated, serious skin damage can occur.

There are 3 types of sunburns that might affect you:

1. Superficial partial thickness burns are similar to first-degree burns. Only the top layer of skin is involved. The hair (if present) may still be attached to the skin. The skin appears red and no blisters are seen.

2. Deep partial thickness burns are similar to second-degree burns. The surface layer and some deeper layers of skin are involved. Unlike in humans, these burns infrequently have blisters. The skin is red and some layers of the skin may be exposed.

3. Full thickness burns are similar to third-degree burns. The burn extends through all layers of skin and may even include tissue beneath the skin. Immediately after the burn, the skin may look like leather or the surface of the burn may appear white.

As expected, sunburn occurs in the summer months when animals at risk spend prolonged time in the sun.

White cats, thinly haired breeds and Sphinx cats are primarily at risk.

If you suspect you have a sunburn, veterinary care is recommended.

The diagnosis of a sunburn is based on the time of year and possible prolonged exposure to the sun. The skin will have characteristic signs of a thermal burn.

Blood tests are not initially necessary to make a diagnosis. Depending on the severity of the burns, blood tests may be done later to determine your overall health.

Treatment of sunburn is based on the severity of the burn.

Superficial Partial Thickness

# For these burns, the hair is carefully shaved from the burned area in order to ease treatment and better monitor healing.
# The wound is gently cleaned with povidone iodine or chlorhexidine.
# Topical creams such as silver sulfadiazine are quite effective in burns.
# Most superficial partial thickness burns can be treated on an outpatient basis with the remainder of treatment and care done by your caregiver.

You will probably have to wear one of those nasty collars so you will not lick the effected area.

Deep Partial Thickness

# For these burns, hospitalization is necessary.
# Intravenous fluids are necessary to provide hydration and needed electrolytes.
# Daily wound cleaning with povidone iodine or chlorhexidine.
# Daily bandage changes.
# Topical cream such as silver sulfadiazine.
# If over 15 percent of the body is burned, skin grafts may eventually be required.

Home Care

Cats do not burn as easily as people. More damage may have occurred to the skin than you may be able to initially see, which is why you should seek veterinary Care. After diagnosis and initial treatment, daily treatment with wound cleaning and topical medication may be necessary.

Preventative Care

For cats at risk, apply sunscreen - yup just like a human - before spending time outdoors. As in humans, it is suspected that repeated sunburns may result in permanent skin damage and even possible skin cancer, especially in white cats.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Diamond on Safari

As you can see, I finally get my bean to make me new blog layout. She is very talented bean, but she have been furry busy of late.

She is now making these Digital Scrapbook designs such as the "Lion Hunt" kit she use to make this blog layout. In fact, she make this design.

AND there is good news! You can even get this "Lion Hunt" for free. But act quickly because it only free through June 14th. After that is goes in her store.

To get this kit, click on this link -->Lion Hunt Freebie.

Please note that this tagger sized kit which is good for making things on the internet and for smaller printing jobs, like making cards, up to 5' x 7".

Do not worry. The silly mane she put on me is not part of the kit, so you do not have to worry your humans put one on you. I even remind her that Lionesses do not have manes, but she ignore me.

I hope you like my new safari theme layout. Now this lioness is going to take cat nap. Hah!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Miss Diamond

(Tag done using the All Decked Out taggers kit from Digicats. Alpha courtesy of Free Digital Scrapbooking.)

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Tail Talk Tuesday

Kitty Cats

Today, I'd like to take a minute to appreciate one of our most beautiful features.... the Tail!

Your tail can vary in position from a graceful swirl around you as you sleep, an elegant lazy feather that floats behind you as you walk, or a perky straight antennae as you run to something with interest. It can also be a thrashing missile as you swish it back and forth.

Your tail is actually pretty amazing. Did you know that about 10 percent of your bones are located in your tail? That is right - up to 20 vertebrae! The vertebrae are enclosed by muscles that allow finely graded movements that lift the tail, move it from side to side, lower it or curl it around the body. Interestingly, the domestic cat is the only cat species able to hold their tail vertically while walking.

Like the cat, many animals use their tails to communicate with other animals. For example, the position of a wolf's tail can tell what kind of a mood he's in. A confident wolf holds her tail up high, and a frightened wolf holds her tail between her legs; a white-tailed deer shows alarm by flicking her tail; and horses flatten their tails between their legs when frightened and lash them back and forth when they are irritated or annoyed.

Likewise, your tail is a barometer of your feelings. A high vertical tail is a sign of happiness. If that high tail quivers from the base up, it indicates that you are really happy and excited. If that tail goes in the opposite direction and is tucked between the legs, then you are afraid or trying to avoid a confrontation.

Wagging your tail means various things, each wag is slightly different. Broad wagging, even whopping, indicates annoyance. You may be curled up next to your human enjoying a nice petting session when suddenly you decides that you've had enough. You will signal this to your human by swishing your tail up and down or its tip from side-to-side. If the human misses the signal, then you may bat at them with your paw, or worse, put the bitey on them, to make your point.

If you're really agitated, you will wag your tail rapidly back and forth from the base. This is a threatening signal to warn other cats (and humans) to back off. On the other hand, a tail that waves back and forth slowly and gently indicates that you're relaxed and happy.

Dogs are different of course, they wave their tails vigorously when they are happy, and slowly when they are tentative about something. No wonder it is so hard to get used to a woofie! We don't speak the same language!

Your may swish your tail when you're in hunting mode. By swishing your tail, you are trying to mesmerize your prey. Since you can't see your prey if it becomes still - our eye sight is geared to notice things in motion -- moving your tail initiates the slightest movement of your target, which you can then see. Mother cats train their kittens in the fine art of hunting by twitching the tips of their tails to provoke playful attacks.

Then there's that little tail flick, which involves just a quick movement of the tail. You may be resting at the foot of your bed and your human says your name and there it is - a little flick. Your eyes are closed and you appears to be sleeping, but you hear your name again, and there it is again – a little flick. That is to let the human know you hear them, even though you're pretending you doesn't. This is a movement of happiness and contentment. It means you trust your human enough to remain sleeping in their presence – and in our own way, we're letting the humans know that we hear them and that all is well.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Myth Monday - The Big Kahuna

Beach Blanket Bingo

Kahuna is a Hawaiian word, defined in the Pukui & Elbert (1986) as a "Priest, sorcerer, magician, wizard, minister, expert in any profession."

I am Cat Kahuna - Best of Cat Profession. At least in this house I am!

Forty different types of kahuna are listed in the book, Tales from the Night Rainbow. Kamakau lists more than 20 in the healing professions alone, including for example Kahuna la'au lapa'au, an expert in herbal medicine and kahuna haha, an expert in diagnosing illnesses.

With the revival of the Hawaiian culture beginning in the 1970s, some native Hawaiian cultural practitioners call themselves kahuna today. Others, particularly devout Christians, disdain the term. The word has been given an esoteric or secret meaning by modern followers of Max Freedom Long and Huna to emphasis a priestly or shamanic standing.

Many myths have grown up around kahuna. One is that kahuna were outlawed after the white man came to Hawaii. For the purpose of this discussion, it is useful to divide kahuna into 3 categories: "craft" kahuna, such as kalai wa'a, an expert canoe maker, and ho'okele, an expert navigator; "sorcerers" including kahuna 'ana'ana; and healers. Craft kahuna were never prohibited; however, during the decline of native Hawaiian culture many died out and did not pass on their wisdom to new students. As an example, when the Hōkūle‘a was built to be sailed to the South Pacific to prove the voyaging capabilities of the ancient Hawaiians, master navigator Mau Piailug from Satawal was brought to Hawaii to teach the Hawaiians navigation, as no Hawaiians could be found who still had this knowledge.

It is often said that the missionaries came to Hawaii in 1820 and made kahuna practices illegal. In the 100 years after the missionaries arrived, all kahuna practices were legal until 1831, some were illegal until 1863, all were legal until 1887, then some illegal until 1919. Since 1919, all have been legal, except sorcery which was decriminalized in 1972.

The first Christian missionaries arrived in 1820. The most powerful person in the nation, Ka‘ahumanu, did not convert until 1825. But it was not until 11 years after missionaries arrived that she proclaimed laws against hula, chant, ‘awa (kava), and Hawaiian religion.

As both healing and sorcery were based in prayer to the ancient gods, the kāhuna went underground for the next 30 years. During that same time, as a result of the high death rate among Hawaiians from introduced diseases, some died before they were able to pass on their wisdom. But many others quietly kept the traditions alive within their families.

King Kamehameha V came to power in 1863. He disdained the law and encouraged the revival of native practices. Many kahuna who had been quietly practicing came forward. On Maui, a group of eight Hawaiians founded the 'Ahahui La'au Lapa'au in 1866. They were not only kahuna, several were also members of the Hawaii Legislature. They interviewed twenty-one kahuna to compile a complete resource of prayers and remedies for the Legislative record. (These interviews have been republished in the book, Must We Wait in Despair? by Malcolm Naea Chun.)

In response to this and other initiatives, in 1868 the Legislature established a Hawaiian Board of Health to license kahuna la'au lapa'au. Kahuna practices including lomilomi massage and la'au kahea healing remained legal for the next twenty years. But the following year, "sorcery" was made illegal, and it remained illegal until 1972.

Both Kamehameha V and his successor, King Kalakaua, invited kahuna to come to Honolulu to share their wisdom. They compiled oral and written histories and documented the prayers, chants, hulas, and remedies for healings. Kalakaua convened groups of kahuna to consult with each other to preserve their heritage. This and many other moves by Kalakaua outraged the Christian residents. In 1887 they forced the “Bayonet Constitution” upon the King. The Legislature outlawed all kahuna practices, including "praying to cure," a law in effect for the next thirty-two years.

In 1919 the Legislature passed a law once again licensing kahuna la'au lapa'au to practice, and since then it has been legal to practice herbal medicine. The Legislature repealed the anti-sorcery laws in 1972 (well before the federal government’s Native American Religious Freedoms Act of 1979) and since then all forms of practice are legal.

In 2001, a licensing law was put in place which allows native practitioners to be certified by Papa Ola Lokahi and the community health centers (not the State). Some have come forward to be licensed, while others refuse to participate in what they see as fundamentally a Western process.

While all this legal maneuvering has been going on, many traditional practitioners have continued to practice as they and their ancestors have always done.

Let's Go Surfin' Now

The use of the term in reference to surfing can be traced back to the 1959 film Gidget, in which "The Big Kahuna", played by Cliff Robertson, was the leader of a group of surfers. The term then became commonplace in Beach Party films of the 1960s such as Beach Blanket Bingo, where the "Big Kahuna" was the best surfer on the beach. Eventually, it was adopted into general surfing culture. Hawaiian surfing master Duke Kahanamoku may have been referred to as the "Big Kahuna" but rejected the term as he knew the true meaning of the word.