Caturday 5/25/13

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If you are my boyfriend you might be thinking: Surely Katie has gotten rid of some of the animals she collected last week. And as my actual boyfriend knows all too well: you are wrong.

With my roommate out of town and all five animals in our apartment in my care, I think this is about the closest I’ll ever get to living on a farm. I’ve been up since 6:30 this morning cleaning litter boxes (times 4), cleaning and filling food and water bowls (times 8… Ralph and Weaz share), walking dogs (times 1, thank god), rubbing bellies (times 5… everybody’s on board with that one), and so on.

Adam asked me what I wanted to do today and my response was as crazy as they come: “I just need to vacuum up the hair of 5 animals and clean all the litter boxes and do all my laundry again because I just realized I’ve been washing my clothes with fabric softener for the last month and I’ve picked up a lot of stray animals. I thought they felt really soft. The clothes…” Happy Saturday!

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In case you’re not up to speed on all the creatures living under my roof, meet my zoo:

Ralphie (AKA Big Momma): Ralph is the boss and don’t you forget it. She drinks out of the kitchen sink and weighs approximately as much as a small tank. She thinks she is actually a lion so don’t tell her she’s not. I found her on the streets five years ago and kept her after she gave birth to five babies in a laundry basket in my lap. You really don’t part ways after bonding like that.

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Weasel (AKA The Rocket Scientist): One of Ralphie’s offspring was Weasel, the runt of the litter and my induction into true cat lady-dom. As soon as Weaz was born I knew I was keeping her in addition to Ralph, bringing my total to more than one and securing my fate as a cat lady at 22. I’m going to put this bluntly: Weaz is not all there in the head. Mitch and I have decided that she has one of those minds so brilliant she can’t function in society. Like an Einstein. But a cat. You follow?

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Tilly the Two-Legged Cat (AKA Nubs): Tilly is a recent addition (as of a week ago). She has no front legs but this didn’t stop her from viciously attacking a grown man. It was all fun and games (and seriously hilarious) watching her take Adam down, but when she went at me the other night I cried like a child. The thing about Tilly is she’s not a bad cat. She’s actually very affectionate and calm when she’s just with me. (She still kind of hates Adam.) When one of the other zoo residents comes into the picture, though, she goes nuts. And being the helicopter mom that I am, I had to dive in and thwart her plot to attack Weaz. I’m not writing her off, though. I think Tilly is largely misunderstood by former owners and foster parents. Without front legs to protect herself, I think she overcompensates with her teeth and I can’t blame her for that. So long as she doesn’t feel threatened she’s fine. Still, I’ve come to the sad realization that Tilly is probably best suited for a one-pet household. But–I repeat–I don’t think this makes her a bad cat. (Don’t tell Weaz but Ralph has expressed on multiple occasions her desire to live in a one-pet household.) I’m not bailing on her, no chance. But I do think she would be happier in a quieter home, and I’m not going to force her into my zoo just because I think she’s cute.

vscocam1559Joey Donut (AKA Reckless Endangerment): I found Joey last week hunkered down on the center line of Tyvola with cars zooming by on both sides. I created a serious traffic hazard by slamming on my brakes and was promptly rear ended. Both cars were fine and the other driver was surprisingly cool about me being an idiot and Joey is safe now so all is well with the world. Do NOT tell Weaz but Joey is the cutest kitten of all time. (I don’t know what Ralph was like as a kitten but I suspect she was a close second.) Her full name is Joey Bag O’Donuts (thank you, Adam, for that), but I’ve taken to calling her simply Joey Donut. She is the cutest animal on the planet. (Do not judge my tie-dye shirt; I’ve been cleaning litter boxes since 6:30 this morning.)
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Wedgie (AKA Terrified of All Cats): My roommate’s dog Wedgie is terrified of all the cats. Terrified. And he seems to be more scared of one-pound Joey Donut than any of the others. Just look at the horror on his face…

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And that’s the zoo.

Adopt a Pet

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“You know how when a couple has a baby and it totally interferes with their relationship?”

Adam is eerily calm as Joey the highway kitten pounces on him from behind a mountain of sheets at 6:30 in the morning. This following a scarring (literally and figuratively) attack by Tilly the two-legged cat and the emotional trauma of making him bond with Toby the stray dog and then promptly hand him off to his new family.

Nope. I have no idea what you’re insinuating here.

So the deal is I currently have four cats in my house. Ralph, Weaz, Tilly the two-legged cat and most recently: Joey (like Dawson’s Creek because she’s a girl) the highway kitten.

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I found Joey hunkered down on the center line on Tyvola with traffic zipping by on each side. Ignoring my mom’s lifelong advice to never risk a human life to save an animal, I slammed on my brakes and was promptly rear ended. Naturally. Try explaining to someone that you just created a serious automotive hazard in order to rescue a stray kitten.

The other driver was surprisingly cool and didn’t stop me from sprinting barefoot (had to toss the heels aside) down the side of the road to see if the kitten was still there. She was. With trucks speeding by inches away from her. When the traffic finally broke I ran into the street (barefoot) and snatched her up.

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Both cars were fine so we let it go but did exchange information so I texted the other driver later that day to apologize again. I’m not saying I condone reckless driving to save kittens but…

I took her to the vet and they said she is “remarkably healthy considering her circumstances.” I LOVE her and if I didn’t already have two-and-a-half in the apartment… I’d keep her. (Adam cringes.)

Just LOOK at her playing with her mouse.

Want to adopt Joey?

If you are in or around Charlotte and are interested in adopting Joey, you can reach out to Halfway There Rescue for an adoption application. I believe there is one person already in line ahead of you, but in case it doesn’t work out you can go ahead and get in line.

Joey is female (despite her name… Adam named her), 1.5 pounds, healthy as can be, litterbox trained, received her first round of vaccinations, and has a sweet, playful disposition.

It doesn’t end there. Some very kind dog rescuers emailed me yesterday asking if I could help get the word out about Charlotte, a beautiful lab mix currently in foster care but in emergency need of a permanent home or she’ll be shipped off to New Jersey on Friday.

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Charlotte is a lab mix (probably some boxer), 10-11 months old, house trained, crate trained, spayed, vaccinated, good with kids (lived with a 5-year-old child), good with other dogs, disinterested in cats. She is a little scared of males so probably has a bad history. Charlotte was found abandoned as a puppy and has been tossed around from shelters and fosters.

Charlotte Best Closeup

Charlotte and Friend

Let’s save this sweet dog the stress of getting passed from place to place and find her a home here, appropriately enough, in Charlotte.

Want to adopt Charlotte?

Charlotte was pulled from the shelter by Lulu’s Animal Rescue in New Jersey so I assume a formal application process will go through them, but you can reach out to me if you’re interested in seeing her and I can connect you with her foster: katierlevans@gmail.com.

That does it for my stray animal collection this week. In the midst of all the madness, we celebrated Adam, Weaz, and Ralph’s birthday on Monday with carrot cake cupcakes. I tried to give him Joey but he said no. Rude.

The man is in need of some serious dog time. At least he still has Wedgie… who is basically a cat.

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Oh! And I almost forgot to mention… My brother proposed to his girlfriend (an animal rescuer extraordinaire) and look how he did it:

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Those are her three rescues plus his black lab. Love.

Caturday 5/18/13

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“Yeah, I have two toddlers that nap from noon to 2 and that’s when I shower so… Come over around 2:30?”

I was working out a visitation window with the woman fostering a two-legged cat that I HAD. TO. HAVE. Motherhood is a level of selflessness I can’t quite wrap my head around. Personal hygiene limited to when the kids are sleeping? No gracias. All the stray cats in the world, though? SIGN ME UP.

I know what you’re thinking: Really, Katie? Three cats? At 27? Should we go ahead and order you a muumuu and some house slippers?

No. Because Tilly the two-legged cat brings my total to two-and-a-half. Plus, she landed in my life as a result of rescuing a puppy so that’s got to count for something. It happened like this…

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Tuesday around lunchtime Mitch busted up in the apartment on a rampage about some irresponsible ass abandoning a black puppy in the dog run at our complex. (We don’t take kindly to irresponsible pet owners.) We went out to investigate and learned that maintenance had called animal control. I knew that if they picked him up the skinny, filthy, mangey little guy would never make it to the adoption floor. Unfortunately little black mutts are a dime a dozen and if they don’t look adoptable, they have a high likelihood of being put down.

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I intervened and claimed ownership to buy him some time. Knowing I had absolutely no idea what to do next, I called my brother’s girlfriend for backup. Sarah runs a non-profit animal rescue called Halfway There (in her spare time… By day, she’s a school psychologist). She offered to take Toby to the vet and cover all his expenses to be neutered and vaccinated. Second chance!

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In the process of getting Toby transferred to the vet, Sarah nonchalantly mentioned she had a two-legged cat in need of placement. A TWO-LEGGED CAT? Surely she knew this would consume me until the cat was in my possession.

I tried to let it go. I really did. But the thought of that nubby little creature in need of a place to stay drove me insane.

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After several texts to Adam and absolutely no rational thought whatsoever, I decided to go get her.

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Her name is Tilly and as far as I know she was born without her two front legs. I say she’s left-handed because that is the longer of her two nubs, but there’s not much there. Her previous owner surrendered her under the explanation that she was aggressive and wouldn’t use the litter box. Only one of these two statements is true and Adam learned that the hard way. More about that later.

She has a special accessible litterbox with a lower step up to make it easier on her and hasn’t had any accidents at my house or at her last foster. Tilly may be a handicat, but she gets around just fine. Mo’ legs, mo’ problems. No legs, no problem.

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Poor Adam gets the Boyfriend Award of the Year for putting up with me this week. The day I picked Tilly up was the same day Toby was ready to be retrieved from the vet. So with a total six animals–Ralph, Weaz, Tilly, Oliver, Diesel and Toby–in our care, we were kind of living in a zoo.

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Toby spent one night with Adam and his dogs while I tried to get Tilly adjusted to life at Caturday headquarters. (You can see Ralph and Weaz’s bewilderment upon meeting her here.)

Adam fell in love with Toby in just one night and I got a little nervous we were going to end up like some kind of really jacked up animal version of the Brady Bunch but with no Alice to clean up all the poop.

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So I launched into Operation Adopt Toby to find him a real home. Within an hour of posting his information on Facebook, he had a waiting list three deep.

Yesterday we handed him off to my friend Kacy and her family. Adam was kind of a disaster but we knew he was landing in a happy, loving home. I started crying in the checkout line at Marhsall’s when Kacy sent me pictures of him settling in with her kids. Look at him with his new brother and sister:

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Toby was in a new home. Tilly was slowly but surely warming up to my crew. Things were looking good.

Adam: Do you think Tilly can get on the bed?
Me: Definitely not.
Adam: No, I think she probably could make it.
Me: I’m telling you that cat cannot jump onto the bed.
Adam: Let’s go to Home Depot tomorrow. I’ll make her a ramp.
Me: Oh my god… Yes. It should have carpet.
Adam: Well obviously.

That’s the conversation we had just a few short hours prior to Tilly launching like a MF two-legged torpedo onto the bed to attack Adam. Turns out she can definitely get on the bed. Cancel the ramp.

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In her defense, it had been an overwhelming hour of introductions to Ralph, Weaz, Wedge and Adam, and I think Tilly’s intention was to go for Weaz, but Adam just happened to be on the bed when she got up there. Adam feels differently.

Now, I do understand that Adam suffered legitimate wounds and a loss of blood at the hands (errrr, nubs) of a cat I insisted on bringing into our lives, but THIS IS ONE OF THE FUNNIEST THINGS I’VE EVER SEEN IN MY ENTIRE LIFE.

You’ve really never lived until you’ve seen your grownass boyfriend scream in terror under the attack of a two-legged cat. The whole ordeal only lasted about 30 seconds but there was screaming and hysterical laughter and my sad attempt at getting all four animals locked away into separate rooms. All because of a two-legged cat we thought couldn’t even get on the bed. Gaze upon this fierce predator…

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HAHAHA.

When all was said and done we convulsed with uncontrollable laughter. I have been such a helicopter mom, keeping all the animals away and making sure Tilly is taken care of. Turns out Tilly takes shit from no one. She took down a grown man last night. I think she’s gonna be just fine with Ralph and Weaz.

Ralph is fine with it because the more cheese I feed Tilly, the more cheese she gets.

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Weaz is like DO NOT WANT.

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To round out this, the most epic of all Caturdays, here is Weaz’s doppleganger:

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Tilly may not stay with us forever. I refuse to force her into a situation where she’s uncomfortable and stressed just because I think she’s cute. Also Adam is now scared of her. (HAHAHA.) But I also think these things take time so we’ll let her see if she wants to settle in. If not, I think a loving pet-less home (in Charlotte so I can see her) would be a great place for her. So if you’re in the market for a two-legged cat (that can definitely get on the bed on her own), just keep her in mind.

If you are in the Charlotte area and looking to adopt, please check out Sarah’s rescue Halfway There.

ALSO… Ralph, Weaz and Adam have a birthday on Monday. Send them presents.

Caturday 5/11/13

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We interrupt this regularly scheduled Caturday to introduce you to your new favorite cat: Princess Monster Truck.

She’s a real live cat in Brooklyn, which means she’s real and hip.

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WE LOVE HER AND YOU DO TOO.

She was born that way, yes, and is the poster child for cat rescue. Her super cool owners found her on the street and couldn’t leave her there. They are awesome.

You can find her Instagram here.

You. are. welcome.

Caturday 5/4/13

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So. Yesterday I wore a cat-print dress, and a 15-pound tub of kitty litter exploded in my trunk. This clearly sucks (the explosion, not my awesome dress), but if you want to talk silver linings I’m now thinking about starting a mobile litter box service with the aftermath. Or at least making a snazzy Pinterest DIY portable litter box tutorial with stupid sparkles on it…

Tired of scooping poop? Sick of your house smelling like poop? Gonna literally kill someone if you step in one more pile of kitty litter when you step out of the shower? Wish your cat could just frigging poop into a receptacle that then drives as far away from your house as possible?

HAVE WE GOT A SOLUTION FOR YOU.

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portable litter box

That’s not even the best part of yesterday. My hard drive also crashed. Like a damn lead balloon. I bought a new one (obviously, because I can’t function without a computer) but made good use of my six computer-less hours by watching Dr. Oz and painting my nails red. It was a big day.

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Without my knowledge, Ralph and Weaz launched a Caturday photo contest on twitter.

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After reviewing dozens of entries, they decided to feature one favorite:

This is Boo dressed like Catman.

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If you have a cat you want to feature on #CATURDAY, you can submit photos to @ralphandweaz.

They also wanted everyone to know that the results of their brother Wedgie’s DNA test finally came in and it’s official:

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