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January 28, 1997 I think Gracie Anne has nice dreams. Yesterday evening she was laying in the cat bed in the hallway, purring up a storm. She was asleep. She kept purring after I started to pet her. She has a wonderful purr.

I'm making definate progress with Red. He is coming to the top of the garage door to let me pet him. I only have to stand on a stool, not a ladder. He doesn't shy away from my hands so much. Especially when they have roast beef in them. Oooo, incentive. I also noticed that he is watching the food dish more often when other kitties are eating from it. And he watches from the top of the garage door. He's been up there a full six months on Saturday. I still can't believe it has been that long.

I saw Angus, an "out front" kitty Sunday morning. What a relief. I was worried something had happened to him. I am also thinking that one of the black cats that I feed in the morning in the yard behind my house is an unaltered female. She was being chased yesterday by this big old grey tom that has been around forever. I sure hope not.

Sunday we went to Disneyland for the day, thinking that no one would be there because of the Superbowl. Boy, we never seem to call it right. When we go up, I usually take my Disneyland sports bottle filled with water. I had it sitting there, ready to go out the door with me, when Georgie chased Lisa and knocked it onto the floor. Boo hoo, the lid broke. And they didn't have any at D-land. Wrong season I guess. We rode the train around and they are working on the Autopia in Tomorrowland. I saw the sweetest cat sitting alongside the little roadway. She was mostly orange and white and had a large black smear of fur on her back. *sigh* I see cats everywhere I go.

Earlier when I was here in the office, which is overcrowded anyway, I had seven cats. Ben, Pepper, Lisa, Gracie, Mickey, DeeJay and Bart. Full house. Bart insisted on me paying attention to him so I got out the nail clippers. Oddly enough, he wasn't interested in hanging around any longer. LOL!!


January 31, 1997 Gee, the last day of January. Where has the time gone. And I know its gonna get faster as I get older. Oh, well, I guess that means bad days will go quickly, too. *smile*

It was very windy Wednesday. The cats sure don't like the wind. They stayed in and watched out of the windows.

I also had a phone call that had the potential of becoming obscene. I thought it was someone that hubby worked with until he asked me what I was wearing. Of course I repeated that back to him and asked if this was one of those calls. He said yes. I said great, because I have star 69 phone service which means I can hang up and push *69 and call him back. Which means its easy for the phone company to trace. He said that wouldn't be very nice. (Oh, yeah, right, this guy knows nice?) So, I hung up and called the phone company just to find out procedure. I guess he tried to call while I was on the phone. I went outside to talk to hubby and tell him about it, when the phone rang. I let the machine answer it. Sure enough, it was my almost obscene phone caller and HE APOLOGIZED!!! *LOL*!! What a hoot that was. He said he wouldn't do it again. I bet not. I still chuckle about his apology. Guess he got a little worried.

The birds have started coming back to the bird feeders in droves. The cats are having a wonderful time just sitting in the window sills and watching the birds, chittering and chattering as they watch. I think the birds know they are safe as long as no cat is outside. But the fence isn't too far from the birdfeeders so the birds can get away quickly.

I worked on the backyard page Wednesday and yesterday. Everything has really been quiet around here lately, no health problems other than Benny's. Knock on wood.

Rusty peed on the couch cover last night. Arghhhh. I should know by now to walk him out to the garage to make sure he goes. It is so strange. I know how he acts when he is looking for a spot. He gets really wound up and sniffs everything and climbs over everything. I usually will pick him up and carry him out to the garage and dump him in the litter box. And he goes. and goes. and goes. But he won't do it unless I am watching. What a strange cat. Then he will go ripping into the house, very happy because he has done a good thing. If he could only do it by himself. And he is almost 14.

I made an appointment for Benny yesterday. So this morning we went to the vet. I think the vet was ready to cry. After all of the problems with Kirby and now Ben. He had told me before that he was ready to leave town because he couldn't fix Kirby. But Kirby got well, then Benny got sick. He took a urine sample and the results show no crystals, no bacteria, no white blood cells (infection) and perfect pH. But there was blood. Plenty of it. So, he is going to try something new on Ben. He is treating Ben with DMSO, something that is used in human cases of interstitial cystitus. He numbed poor little Benny's weewee and put the catheter inside of him to release the DMSO. Benny goes back next Wednesday for another treatment. I sure hope this one works. It has been so long now since we have had all cats healthy. Benny ran outside and is probably laying in the sun somewhere.


February 3, 1997 Well, the weekend is over. Cats are happy. I can't believe so many of them are still in the house. Its after 8 am already. Bart is sitting with me and he is very happy. Purring and has his eyes half closed.

We went to the Price Club yesterday and I picked up a couple of new cat books. One is the Reader's Digest book. I found a couple of pretty interesting things, just glancing through it. One of them was about cleaning a cat's ears. Cleaning them actually makes the ear manufacture more wax. I told Brian this, because he is always going on about how dirty the cats' ears are and the more often he cleans them, the dirtier they get. Now we know why. He's pushing the on button. He, of course, gets disgusted and says he won't do it anymore. Okay.

When I fed the cats Saturday night, Georgie was very, very rambunctious. He ran from the garage, into the house, around the living room, into the dining room, into the tv room, into the garage again, touched the kitty door and started all over. Georgie, settle down.

One of the problems that I have had with Red, isn't actually with Red. Mickey wants to be up there, too. Well, Red tries to let Mickey know that this is Red's space. Mickey doesn't know from who owns what. He's our little Rodney King. Can't we all get along? Anyway, Mickey will come up to get loved, too, when I am petting Red. And I am afraid for Mickey, because he isn't the most graceful of cats. He took a bad tumble when he was a kitten and doesn't seem to have a good sense of balance with his back legs. I don't know if its a problem with the leg or he is just a klutz. Anyway, I just imagine Red chasing him away and Mickey falling to the cement floor because he slipped or lost his balance running away from Red. So last night Brian put some more wood strips up in the rafters, wider than the ones already there. Now, I won't worry about Mickey and the big getaway.

Sunday morning and this morning, Bobby came into the bedroom between four and five. He was crying. Yesterday, I got up and took him and layed with him on the couch. Petting and nuzzling him. After fifteen minutes he was ready to get down. This morning I took him into the bed. After only ten minutes he had decided that he had had enough and was very vocal about it. He would have scared anyone who didn't know him, the way he was carrying on. I just put him back on his blanket, the one with the heating pad under it. He curled up and went back to sleep. Otherwise, he is normal.

Benny is feeling better. Of course, there is still blood in his urine. That will take a while. But he seems more affectionate. He followed me everywhere first thing this morning. His urine output is greater each time. So, hopefully, the DMSO is going to work. I wonder how long it will take?


February 5, 1997 Its early Wednesday morning. Benny has another doctor's appointment this morning at ten. I hope the news is good.

Maggie has a new *trick*. She likes to play with the phone cord. She is able to get her claws inside the curls and she pulls up on it and takes the phone off of the hook. She thinks this is a lot of fun. When I chase her away from one phone in the office, she will go to another. And she just looks at me and smiles.

I haven't seen the cat I call "mama" out back since this weekend. I hope she is okay.

After much complaining by my husband, I followed through on my threat to sleep on the couch. He said fine he would sleep on the couch, too. Then when I woke up later, he was gone!!! He went to bed so I went and asked him why he left. He said that, once again, my snoring woke him up. hmmph. So, I went back to my spot on the couch. I had Lola by my head. Mickey was on my chest, Georgie on my legs and Gracie at my feet. Brian said nobody slept with him and I said "cause they love me more". So there. P. S. He said he got a great night's sleep. What does he know. (she said sarcastically).

Just for the record, that flock of wild parrots that fly overhead every morning drive me nuts. They are SO noisy. Neat to watch.


February 7, 1997 Well, here it is Friday already. Gosh, it just flies by, the time does. Yesterday I was notified by GeoCities that this website was chosen as a "featured page"!! Yay, that was really good news.

It looks like the DMSO is working on Ben. I checked out a website the other night and I have to find it and re-read it. It said that DMSO was made from woodpulp. Pretty interesting, I think. Whatever, if it helps him, I'm all for it. My vet was pleased with ther results Wednesday. He said there was probably 50% less blood in the urine this time.

Speaking of Benny, he is such a little pixie sometimes. Today, I heard somebody try to keep opening the bathroom cupboard door. I went to see which kitty it was and Mickey was sitting in front of the door, looking quite innocent. I admonished him and shooed him out of the bathroom. Then Benny happened to poke his head out. Of the closet. "Benny, get out of there", I said as he knocked stuff over and out.

Which brings me to another story. This morning when I went into the kitchen, some little cat rascal had opened the small closet door underneath our oven. There were lightbulbs on the kitchen floor, pushed out of their storage area. hmmmm. I put them back and firmly shut the door to the closet. Minutes later, while I was reading the morning paper, I heard an odd noise, something unfamiliar connected with a kitty toy. I went to see what it was. I hadn't picked up all of the light bulbs and Lonee and someone else (who ran) where playing with it. Oh, what fun these guys can be.

Georgie kept getting yelled at last night. I guess he was feeling very aggressive and chasing everybody he could. We tried a time out and then gave him some catnip to mellow him out. Brian didn't know that some of the cats like to eat catnip. Georgie is one of them. He was picking it up with his paw and licking it off. I guess it worked. He did calm down.


February 9, 1997 Boy, did I have the most awful nightmare the other night. I think Brian's obsession with cleaning up after the cats is getting to me. I dreamt that he (Brian) killed all of the cats, but two, by breaking their necks. Lola was one of the two and the other one was a fast runner. I was afraid (in the nightmare) that someone would find out what he had done. Sometimes dreams can be so real and was I happy when I woke up and Rusty was in my face. Brian thinks I'm mean for having dreamed it. Yeah, like I did it on purpose. I told him if he wasn't so darn obsessive lately, that I probably would have never even dreamed anything so awful.

We decided to get Annie her own litterbox for the bedroom. Since she continues to poop on the floor in the master bathroom and in front of my dresser, why not get her her own litterbox? At least she can cover it. Guess what? I think she forgot what a litterbox is for. She pooped in front of the dresser again, not 3 feet from the box. Maybe I'll take the lid off during the day. Its possible that she feels trapped inside, not knowing if someone is waiting for her to come out. (Georgie, bad cat.)

We finally purchased some nail clippers made specifically for cats. What a dream to use. Just like a knife on soft butter. A lot easier than the dog clippers mom gave me, or the human clippers of Brian's. I was actually in pursuit of claws last night.

When I was almost done clipping Bart's claws, Lonee actually came up to me on the chair. She rubbed up against me and curled up in my arms. I slowly slid my hand and then my arm under her little body and VERY slowly picked her up. I held her for the longest time in my arms. She just purred and would lift her little face up to mine to be kissed and rubbed. It was great. I wish she wasn't shedding so much though. I felt like I had just been bestowed the greatest privelege known to mankind. A cat's love.

Speaking of Lonee, this morning when I went to open the door to let the cats out, she was in the rafters and was having a hard time coming down. I think she forgot who Red is. She would hiss at him when he came too close to her. Problem was, I was trying to show her the easiest way down, which is also where I feed Red. So, he thought he was going to get fed, and she was getting upset. I ended up climbing the ladder to his normal spot and he ran over for hugs. This left her avenue of descent open and down she came.


February 12, 1997 Well, Ben had his appointment Monday morning for his third treatment of DMSO. It really seem to be working. Last week I did a lot of surfing trying to find any information that I could on the use of DMSO for interstitial cystitus. I left email at alot of places. And I even got mail from a vet (JazzyDoc) that read about my problems with Benny right here on my website. I received mail giving me Dr. Stanley Jacob's (a people doctor) phone number for information. I called that Monday morning and left a message. He called me back (wow), told me had just finished an hour-long national question and answer radio show (WOW again) and I told him a brief description of the problem. He said "have your vet call me, DMSO is great for use in cats". So, I printed all of the information out and took it to my vet. He wanted to read it then and there. I think because of JazzyDoc's letters, he represcribed the Elavil. Now, Benny is on 5mg twice a day for a week, then down to once a day. I will admit, he certainly isn't straining. Not that I have seen. I am keeping all paws crossed.

Yesterday, when I was finished with my shower and I opened the door to get the towel, Lonee was standing in the hallway watching me. Another first. It is amazing how she is so slowly becoming like the other cats. We will be watching television and she will run in chasing George. Or she will WALK out into the garage, where she use to run. Its obvious that she is losing her fear of us, little by little.

Oh and my Red Rafter. He has two place for loves now. His old spot at the top of the ladder and a new spot. He stands on the garage door ledge and I stand on a stool. He just loves to headbutt. Giving me that Red scent. He doesn't run off when the other cats come around either. He knows he's safe as long as I am standing with him. I chase the other cats away. I moved his food down another level. He knows its there. He will stand on the ledge and just look at it. It shouldn't be too long until he actually jumps down to eat it.

Annie hasn't pooped in the bedroom in two days. Hopefully, the litter box is doing the trick. She really surprised me yesterday. She came into the office and slept on one of the many towels we have laying around. Brian was amazed when he came home and saw her in here.


February 14, 1997 All of the cats seem to be doing well. Annie isn't pooping on the floor anymore. I think her "own" litter box is making her a little more secure. She is coming out from behind the bed a little more often. And she slept on the bed last night.

Lisa slept on my pillow and arm last night. That was nice. She doesn't do that much anymore.

Red is coming down a little more each day. He will look at the food bowl and then at me. I will leave the garage and let him make his own decision. I know he will eventually come down.


February 16, 1997 The other night I looked into the garage. Red was actually curled up on one of the cat climbers we have, not up in the rafters. *VBG*. More progress!!

Boy, did Benny ever get into trouble yesterday. He made daddy so mad, that daddy started swearing and I had to tell him to stop. Brian had a door on sawhorses that he is painting, part of our slow remodel. He is using a high gloss white latex paint, one that is easy to clean because of the cats propensity for marking their territory. So, this is the scene. Freshly painted white door, in the backyard, on sawhorses. Brian is in the back washing out the paint sprayer. What's a cat to do? Well, the obvious. Jump onto the wet door. There were little Benjamin pawprints all over it. There were little dirt prints and places where the paint was pulled up and ended on Benny's paws. Hopefully, the door will be alright. Brian immediately got a towel wet and rubbed all of the wet paint off and can start over again today. And as for Ben, daddy had to hold him while I trimmed the dried paint and the fur it was on, off of his little paws. He didn't know what he did.

Well, Annie hasn't pooped out of a box since last Sunday. The new litterbox was a good idea.

I had Lonee laying on my chest yesterday. She was very happy. Not a bit frightened.


February 20, 1997 Gosh, it seems like everything seems to be running smoothly. Nothing major happening, which is very nice.

Red actually came down another step for dinner last night. I wish he would just stand up to the other cats when they go up to him. I think they are just curious. We ordered KFC last night and had a lot of leftover chicken. I peeled the meat off of the bones (which immediately went out into the dumpster) and gave it to the cats. I gave Red a whole bunch. I think he appreciated it. Something else that I have noticed that he doesn't do anymore, is nip at my hand or fingers. He will smell them, but no attempts at biting anymore. That makes it more pleasant.

Something I have noticed about Lonee. She is quite the little beggar. When I am in the kitchen or eating dinner, she will come up to see what I have. "Hmmm, would this be good eats? Maybe if I look really sweet, she will give me some." Then if I move a little too quickly, she is gone. Soon to be back. She also follows me around now, although at a distance. Its the funniest thing.

Benny still seems to be doing okay. I haven't seen him straining or haven't found any bloody urine since his last DMSO treatment. I keep watching. Oh, and this summer he is going to get a haircut. I think we will go with the Lion Style. Then he will look like the Cowardly Lion in the Wizard of Oz. He can sing "if I were king of the forest".

Update on the litterbox in the bedroom. Annie hasn't used the bathroom carpet since the Sunday after we got the litterbox. And I know its related, but I don't know how, she doesn't spend nearly as much time behind the bed as she had been. YAY!!


February 21, 1997 Yesterday was a good day for the ferals and myself.

I sat on a chair in the living room last night and called Lonee, who was under the dining room table. She really came over to me!! She jumped up next to me and let me pet her and then she cuddled up on my arm and snuggled against my neck. Wow!! This is progress.

This morning, Red came to where the food is now, a step lower than last week. He waited for me to stroke his back and scratch behind his ears. He was fine until Mickey came up. Then he scampered back into the rafters. But still more progress.

All three of the kitties are still coming to eat at the house behind us. I have a sinking feeling the youngest is also pregnant. Not good. I was hoping this kitty was of a gender that didn't carry kittens.

Wednesday afternoon, I walked by the front door, (open in nice weather to air out the house) and there was a big fuzzy black cat laying by the screen. I had to go to the mailbox and I opened the door. The kitty ran out and lay by the side of the car. Didn't bother him a bit that I was there. I think someone up the street owns him.


February 24, 1997 MUDDY PAWPRINTS!!! Everywhere I look this morning are muddy pawprints. All over my desk. In the bathroom on the counter. On the white bathroom floor. (of course walking on the little rug is not an option, muddy pawprints always show up so much better on white.) And the culprit is the wonderful Benny.

For almost a month now, Bobby has been waking up in the middle of the night, walking around the house and crying. He seems to be fine after one of us gets up and stays with him for a little while. This morning Brian got up and couldn't find him. Well, Brian was in the bathroom and called to Bob. Then Brian tried to find Bobby in the hallways. No Bob. But, I still heard him crying. Bobby was in the bathroom looking for Brian. Brian brought him to me in bed and I held him for about ten minutes. Then Bobby decided that was enough, and with Bobby enough means let me down right now. Growling and hissing the entire time. Then he hopped back to his spot in the tv room, on his heating pad. We think maybe he is getting senile.

I think Ben might need another treatment. There isn't any blood that I can see in his urine, but his volume isn't great. I have to get a couple of other cats in for vaccinations along with all three dogs. I'll ask the vet about Ben then.

My Red one waits for dinner now. We will have to figure out a way for another step down. Last night I was petting Bart, the main reason Red hasn't come down yet, and Red at the same time. Bart just kept giving Red the eye. I told Red that all he had to do was give Bart a big smack and Bart would leave him alone. Bart is your typical bully. A real coward at heart.

I think not getting treats anymore is helping Lisa to lose some weight. She's still big, but she has more energy. She actually has wanted to play fetch a couple of times lately. And she has been going outside to chase bugs. Plus, she has been playing with the other cats at night.

Saturday, we got fourteen 30lb containers of cat litter. Brian dumped all of the old litter and replaced it with new. I can't believe how many of the cats started rolling in it. Maggie got there late. Someone had already pooped, but that didn't bother her. Oh, no. She still did the litter box roll. Stinky kitty!!


February 27, 1997 Well, its cold and windy and rainy outside. A winter storm blows through today with a possibility of snow in the mountains. I sit here in the warm house, Benny curled up on the keyboard, Georgie is standing on the typewriter looking out the window and Pepper is sleeping on one of the many towels in here, the one on the papercutter. Buddy has been refusing to be put into the shop at night, but he went willingly this morning. Poor guy was shivering. He has his own little "cave" with blankets and a cedar bed. The coffee is good and freshly ground. The music I am listening to is the MIDI file on Maggie's page. Satin Doll. I have always liked that song.

Tuesday night/Wednesday morning Lisa couldn't get close enough to me in bed. She actually laid across my neck at one point. She was very happy and she let me know by humming her little kitty tune in my ear. It was nice, but I wish her paws didn't smell like litter box.

Last night when we got the cats in, Lonee was outside. I clap my hands and say "kitties in" and this gets quite a few inside. Then there are the others that we have to catch and carry in. Well, Lonee ran to the side of the house where the cat door is. I chased Kirby up that way and there was Lonee. She didn't go inside at all. She was sitting on top of a cathouse being cute. When she saw me coming, then she went inside. I can't believe how much she is being like our other cats. It just makes me so happy.

Georgie seems to be losing some weight. Guess its time to get out the Droncit.

Red calls to me when he hears me talking. I tell him to come on down and come into the house. But he just meows at me. He is using the spot in the rafters where the litter box used to be as his current litter box. So, I have to use a litterscoop and dustpan to scoop up his mess. Another reason I wish he would get his furry behind down.

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lisaviolet is fifty something, married with no kids, takes care of lots of cats, likes taking photographs, loves Southern California weather and spends altogether too much time avoiding her responsibilities.

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