The Crazy Cat Lady enclosure is nearing completion of Phase 1!
Let me give you the background here: In the past, all my animals have been rescues. With the exception of Happy, I didn’t know any of the birthdays of any of my pets. I never *really* knew how old they were.
Today, my friends, Mikey and Rupert are One Year Old.
One year of age is when you stop referring to felines as “Kittens” and you start calling them Cats. It’s their Cat-Mitzvah, people! I can’t believe how excited / happy I am today. It’s really funny, I’m rolling my eyes at MYSELF!
In the past, my cats Leo and Sunshine were indoor / outdoor cats. While we were living in Toronto, they were strictly apartment cats, but once we moved to the west coast, as both of them had been identified as “strays” at the SPCA, and both clearly knew about predators and staying close to home, they had free access to the great outdoors.
With Mikey and Rupert, not so much. They’re ragdoll cats. Their ancestors have not been outside in at least SIX generations, possibly longer. Ragdolls are bred to be sociable, compliant, and… well, soft. This makes them amazing pets.
But I would not give Mikey a shot in hell at surviving outside on his own. We have actual predators out here, people. Eagles prey on housecats. Wolves actively target them. So do adolescent cougars. I can’t let Mikey outside.
Rupert, I think, would fare just fine. He might fare a little too well. The neighbours have elderly cats, and apparently the other cats in the area are beating the oldies up. I wouldn’t put that behaviour past Rupert. I’m also certain that Roo would be an incredible hunter, given the opportunity.
If it were only Rupert, I’d probably start introducing him to the outdoors on a leash, and build up to supervised, off-leash backyard time.
But I don’t want to have to rush him to the vet after getting in a tussle with another cat. And I don’t want Roo to be the type of cat who used to come beat up my Leo. Roo, at times, is more like a mini bobcat or wolverine than a domesticated feline. I think he’s some sort of genetic throwback. With his people he’s incredibly demonstrative and affectionate. He follows us around and licks us like we’re his kittens. But there is something distinctly feral and dominant about him, despite his domestication.
This other side of him supervises his brother’s litter box use (one for pee, one for poop!) and howls loudly when I mention aloud, the possibility of one day, maybe, adopting another dog. “Noooooooooooooooo!” Rupert is anti-dog.
Thanks to my dear friend for sponsoring this outdoor enclosure project.
Rupert and Mikey will soon have safe access to the great outdoors via this laundry room window. The enclosure will contain this cat tree, and a pentagon-shaped surround of cedar with chicken wire panels. I call this “Phase 1” because I plan on expanding the pentagon in the future to include a cat garden and part of the lawn.
The panels stack to eight feet high, and come up just under the overhang of the roof. The top of the enclosure will have deer netting to keep the cats in and the eagles out, and I’ll probably cover the top and two sides with clear plastic during the rainy season, depending on which way the wind tends to blow.
So that is the Cat-Mitzvah update!
In other news, folks, I’ve been podcasting! I’m not always great about cross-posting episodes to the blog, but I can see from the numbers that at least 90 of you are downloading the episode as soon as it’s released, which means – YOU HAVE SUBSCRIBED! Thank you!
You have a new episode today, and two more coming next week and the week after! Next week’s episode features a super-special SECRET guest! We had a fantastic conversation. Today, I finished off talking about my parent’s weirdly occupied house and what we did to make that place habitable while they were living there. You can listen to that episode here:
If you would like to subscribe and get the Joyful Telepathy episodes the moment they’re released, here’s what you do:
With an apple iphone or similar product, open the podcast app. It looks like this:
Then within the app, search for Joyful Telepathy, or Kate Sitka. When you find my podcast, click on it and select “subscribe”.
That’s it! The new episodes will download on to your device as soon as they’re posted to joyfultelepathy.com
If you have an android / windows / other phone, then you’ll need to download a podcast app first. There are many of them, but to make things easy I suggest you download Stitcher to your device.
My podcast is already on the Stitcher network, so once you have the app, all you have to do is search for Joyful Telepathy or Kate Sitka, and subscribe!
If you would rather have a different app, you can still subscribe to the Joyful Telepathy Podcast. What you would need to do instead of searching for Joyful Telepathy or Kate Sitka, is instead search for this:
That piece of code that looks like a website address will tell your podcast program where to find the data for my podcast. It should automatically add my podcast to your listening cue and update it with new episodes.
In honour of Mikey and Rupert’s very first birthday, post a little comment if you like and I’ll read it to them tonight!