Shear Bliss

Living with a Siamese cat, an Irish Setter dog & umpteen Bengal cats & kittens

Thursday, July 05, 2007

More On Food

Really Bengal cats are not normal cats. Please don't let anyone convince you otherwise. They do do things that some 'normal' cats do - but they also do things that a 'normal' cat wouldn't dream of doing.*

Ding, short for Pudding, is approximately seven months old. I hand reared him from just before two weeks old as his mummy didn't want anything to do with him. So I guess that sort of makes me his mummy. Accordingly, he believes that anything I eat is suitable for him.

So, to add to the list of odd foods eaten by Bengals - which includes crisps, bread, cake & advocado - we now have banana (loved so much that Ding will jump up & try to snatch it), boiled potato, cucumber & chocolate.

Though to be fair, the older Bengals also seem to like cucumber ... chewing it at any rate. Cucumber isn't much use after it's been perforated by teeth, it goes very soggy. (Sweet potatos fare a little better as you can cut off the bit where the fangs have been).

* I'm probably being unfair to cats, it's probable that most 'normal' cats also have at least one odd trait. They also may retrieve, walk on a lead, come when called, sing, talk while they eat, eat weird foods .... however they probably won't possess all these odd virtues at once.

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Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Death by Crisps

Okay, I will admit that a cup of coffee & a packet of Cheese & Onion flavour crisps eaten in bed is not really the best sort of diet. But you wouldn’t expect it to result in death – not unless it was a lot of mornings & a lot of packets of crisps.

However, the obviously tantalising aroma of the cheese & onion proved too much for Cuthbert & he stuck his head inside the bag to savour all the last little driblets. Amazing, he could get his whole head in. Unfortunately, once his whole head was in he couldn’t get it out. Walking backwards at high speed didn’t dislodge it.

He headed out the door backwards & as I rushed from under the covers I heard the steady bump bump bump of a cat falling down the stairs. Crisp bag still on head, Cuthbert decided to reverse tactics & walked forwards, I caught up with him just after his head thudded into the wall.

Okay, I could have rushed & got my camera & let the poor little bugger wander around in confusion for a few minutes more & got a very funny photo that I could share – but I’m glad I didn’t. When I peeled the crisp packet off his head, his ears were very pink (not just embarrassment, I’m sure). He looked a bit sheepish for a while but accepted a cuddle before scrambling off to have a good wash.

I don’t think the moral of the story is not to have a crisp flavoured breakfast – rather it might be to dispose of the empty bags very carefully. I’m not sure if he would have asphyxiated without attention – but I’m glad that I didn’t have the chance to find out.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

A Breakthrough

Marmaduke, the little orange elf, a four-month old Bengal kitten has always been a fussy eater. He's consistently refused to eat dried kitten food (or even dried cat food) of any variety offered - even mixed in with tinned kitten food, he'd notice & refuse his food.

So, I just have to share the breakthrough, tonight for the very first time he tucked into a meal of dried kitten food. I have no idea why he decided to brave the crunch but am highly delighted.

Meal times were getting a bit problematical. I feed three dried meals a day & one wet meal (either tinned kitten food, chicken or fish). With Marmaduke getting all wet food, the others have realised that they were missing out. So they started to shadow Marmaduke & I, making it virtually impossible to sneak a wet meal. Even if I was sucessful, I'd brave a range of dirty looks. Fortunately, no body decided to take it out on Marmaduke.

So - just a posting to say hooray!

PS I've had a bit of a problem posting the photo - but it's finally up there at the start of the listing. Marmaduke is on the right - just behind Maisie, his sister. As you can see Marmaduke is just a little bit smaller - I think that this is because he hasn't been eating the dried kitten food as have his sisters.

Friday, April 28, 2006


This is Apollo.

Do you see what I mean about the glum expression? His little mouth curves downwards in discontented lines - no little smile for the camera.

Actually not sure if he is looking so much as glum as horrified at being photographed.

He is terribly sweet really. He likes cuddles. He likes playing. He has a gorgeous golden orange hue & great spots. He's just not got a particularly happy face for a Bengal kitten... I'm sure though that he will grow into his looks & become a very handsome, golden Bengal cat.

Sitting Down to Eat

This is Stormy feeding her five Bengal kittens.

Ever since they've been tiny, she's sat up to feed them. I regret not having the camera handy when they were smaller because invariably Stormy would sit on her bum & slouch backwards, legs & arms splayed on either side. Five little babies snuggled into the milk bar. Stormy would then drop off to sleep, her head lolling forward - almost as shown in the photo - but about five times as amusing to look at.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Stormy's Five Bengal Boys

Bengal Kittens

Meet Stormy's babies ... oh, looks like you won't be able to see the photo at the moment as there is a problem with the upload page.

Stormy has five babies, five spotted Bengal kittens, just four weeks old & beginning to grow their teeth.

I was going to name them after types of weather, thinking predominantly of winds - however, I noticed that one little one had a line down the centre of his tummy in the middle of all his spots & started referring to him as Ceasar. Another little one has a face that glints with pale gold & he became Midas. His much more golden orange brother is now Appollo & a little darkie became Nero. That just left the problem of what the final kitten would be known as. He does have the sweetest face. After much dithering & calling out names to see if he would twitch or respond to any by looking at me, he has ended up as Adonis.

Different people have different ideas about what is cute & sweet & lovely - wonder, if when you see the photos you'll be able to identify Adonis. Apollo will probably be the easiest to guesss - with his golden orange face & his very glum expression. Ah well, a treat in store - hopefully.

These little guys currently have two Mums. Stormy's sister, Sunny has two babies, just six days old. Stormy & Sunny are in the same room. Stormy is no longer the possessive constant mother that she was in the early days - where any touch I made on the kittens was rapidly washed away so I didn't contaminate them. She's more happy to sit & watch them now than to curl up with them & nurse them. So, last night, whilst they were screaming at their watching Mum for food Aunty Sunny came along & carried them off. They dwarf her little babies.

I've tried carrying the boys back but if they cry & Stormy doesn't instantly go to them, Sunny steps in & retrieves them, gives them a quick top & tail & top-up.

I wonder if that was a smirk I saw on Stormy's face?

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Actually Guilty as Charged

I've just discovered something.

After deciding that I had been blaming the dog unneccessarily, she & I have been fellow sighers over the various mishaps & bits of rubbish that have been appearing from out of the bin & into the house. It's almost like a shared raising of eyebrows, along with a big sigh. I then gently carress her head & mutter something like 'cats, eh?' & she wags her tail.


I've got a new bin. Well, actually it's about three months old now. A large grey plastic thing with a domed top with a sort of push-up lid set into the dome. The idea of the dome was to stop the cats sitting on it & the lift up lid bit to stop them opening it & helping themselves ... though I really fail to see the appeal of potato peelings, I do actually understand their desire to lick the tins clean. The new bin worked fantastically for weeks. No more rubbish on the floor. No more raiding. Wonderful.

Then it started again.

I have now caught the culprit in the act. I wish that I had a photograph to share the indisputable evidence. Tilly the dog. Tilly, in whose mouth butter would not melt. Tilly the previously falsely accused. Tilly caught. Caught wearing the bin lid because she had put her head through the push-up lid. She looked so ridiculous.

I almost feel like re-creating it for the camera for posterity .... but will that negate the telling off she received? Will it make her think that I am encouraging her to go a-raiding?

.... but I'm so tempted!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Bad Kitty

I'm posting the url of the Bad Kitty List so that I will never forget where it is. So that I will never feel that I alone have Bad Cats.

I must go & re-read it ... wonder if anyone else's cats have invented a new sport, or changed their colour to white with the handy application of a full bag of flour, or possibly another cat somewhere also enjoys chewing potatos, cucumbers, bread & bananas ... oh yes, & tea bag boxes?

It is rather fortunate that they are able to make up for their bad ways in other more good ways. I'm just going to sit & think what those good ways are ....


I've been blaming the dog for stealing things. Blaming the dog only.

Now I just wonder if she has actually only been looking after things for me. Keeping them safe. Saving them from perforation by tiny teeth. Keeping them in one place. Helping me to find missing things.

I'm sure that she wasn't responsible for depositing a tub of aspirins, a candle tea-light & my son's razor in the cat's basket. Though for sure she had something to do with the tin of corned beef & my slipper that were keeping warm in beside her when I returned this evening. If she is only being helpful, I do wish that she had looked after the special tea bags (green tea & vanilla sounded wonderful) that I had bought.

I'm not sure that I am going to get to try the special tea. I can't help noticing that though it is still on the kitchen worktop where I left it (serves me right for not putting it away - though what difference that might have made as the monsters can get into the cupboards ...) it now has many tiny holes & there is a generous sprinkling of leaves around the packet.

At least, I suppose, tonight nobody raided the larder cupboard. I still shudder to remember how much mess one jar of yeast extract made - at least when they knocked that out of the cupboard they didn't also pour flour over the floor like they did the previous week.

I have bought some child locks. The one on the fridge works perfectly. No more chewed cucumbers, no more tongue marks in the butter, heaven. The one for the cupboard is not so good. It's bought but not fitted ... I can't work the child lock bit!

Maybe I'm just not feeding them enough.