Christmas presents opening – Alfie style
Moving to a new country/city and starting a new life there can be exciting / scary / fun / unexpected / difficult / a good choice / a bad choice / refreshing – depending on who/what you’re following (or running away from). It’s something I think everyone should experience at least once in their lives. Or in my case several times – four, to be exact. But this blog is not about me, but about Alfie. So let me stop rambling and get back to Alfie’s London Welcoming…
So after travelling for ages (read about my Amsterdam-London trip with Alfie in my last blog post), we finally arrived in London. I had read countless tips about bringing your cat into a new house (to share in another blog post). So I was prepared for a 2-4 week adjustment period, starting with him getting used to one of the rooms, then slowly introducing him to other areas of the house.
Well let me tell you something… This cat is UNSTRESSABLE (yes Dr. Spell Check, I know this is not a real word, but it should be, as it describes Alfie so accurately)!
Here’s what happened. We get into our new place, put the cat carrier in the spare bedroom (which was full of the familiar boxes he so much loved in Amsterdam), open it, and…
… off he goes
…exploring the view
.. and then… checking out the rest of the house
…and finally feeling at home
10 minutes. That’s all it took for him to settle in his new home. I could not believe it. I told you – this cat is UNSTRESSABLE!
Have you ever moved to a new place with your cat? What was your experience? Let me know in the comments below, I would love to read about it.
… And the award for the longest blog post title ever goes to… today’s blog post. Thank you, thank you! Now back to business 🙂
In one of my earliest posts (link>>), I shared with you a mini-list of reasons why I chose to have a Birman. You might wonder now to what extent Alfie actually is like that, because you know what, with cats, as with people, what you see (or read, in this case) is not always what you get. So, let’s see if Alfie lives up to the Birman hype…
* “Birmans are affectionate and sweet natured” – Yes, yes, yes! Alfie really is very affectionate. He loves sitting on Andy’s chest and treadle while purring loudly while Andy rubs his tummy. It’s their little morning routine.
* “Birmans are people oriented cats. They are always pleased to see you and they love following you around.” – Oh, so true! Alfie ALWAYS follows me around the house, even if I’m only going downstairs to get my phone. He always wants to know where I am, and what I’m doing, which brings me to the next one:
* “Birmans are extremely inquisitive” – Definitely! Alfie is seriously the most curious cat ever. He ALWAYS needs to check things out, be it grocery bags or my guests’ shoes. Anything new has to be explored:
* “Birmans are dog-cats” – No! Actually, yes… sometimes at least. I’ve never had a dog, but I think Alfie does act like one sometimes: always runs to the door when he hears my key in the lock, then waits for me at the door meowing, sleeps outside our bedroom door (ready to come in the second we unlock the door), and sometimes plays fetch. I even managed to teach him a trick (check out the video here>> ).
* “Birmans hold conversations with you”- Yup, that’s him again! I love our little talks when I ask him silly things and he never fails to answer with a shorter meow (yes!) or longer one (no! or maybe!).
* “Birmans are friendly and playfully outgoing” – Hm… not too sure about this one. He is not really THAT friendly, especially not with people he’s never met. He’s not the kind of cat that comes over to headbutt you and rub his face against your feet. Also, he is quite playful, but he also loves chilling out on his throne.
* Birmans have wonderful purr machinery. Picking up your Birman or a pat on the head will mostly start the purr running. Some Birmans like to sit beside you and will purr softly for hours.” – Aha, yes again! It really takes the tiniest little bit of attention to get Alfie purring. He’s got the most calming purr ever. Soooo relaxing! Love it!
*”Birmans are easy to groom, brushing once a week is enough”- Gotta disagree on this one. He won’t let me brush his tummy, so his belly fur mats like crazy and it takes patience (which I don’t have) to catch him in a relaxed enough mood to cut the mats.
*Birmans love to help with all household tasks and it is not unusual to find them in the ironing basket when you are ironing” – or may I add sitting on the laptop when you are working or try to chew your pen when you are writing. Yes, I recognize this one as well!
So, let’s see… he scored 7.5 out of 9. He’s definitely a true Birman!
What is your cat like? Very curious to see your replies 🙂
I decided to write today about a topic I have a very strong opinion about: declawing cats. I think declawing is one of the most horrible things you can do to your cat and anyone who cares more about their cat than their carpet / furniture would never have their cat declawed. And those who care more about the furniture than the cat, should never get a pet in the first place. In many countries here in Europe it’s actually illegal, as it’s considered mutilation.
Emotions apart (which is pretty much impossible when I talk about cats), declawing involves amputation surgery and is more complicated than you may think. It requires the removal of the last bone of the cat’s toes (as the claw adheres directly to the bone). Serious surgery means serious & painful recovery (during which the cat still needs to go about their daily business: run, scratch in the litter box, …).
Claws are there for a reason: defence (especially if it’s outdoor cat), catch prey, aid for climbing, exercise (they stretch their muscles using their claws), balance, or mark territory. So if you’re even considering declawing, think how you would live without half of your fingers.
Still, how can you keep your cat’s claws manageable? By clipping them or using Soft Paws (claw caps for the front claws). T trim Alfie’s front claws – I find this video super informative with lots of great tips: link!. As Alfie’s not as calm as the cat in the video, I always trim his nails when he’s sleepy.
What’s your view on declawing?
Alfie, you know I love you and can’t be genuinely angry at you. But why of why are you even trying then?
One last thing before I go. If you haven’t heard about this iPad app, you definitely have to check it out (link!). I’m now even more excited about getting my new iPad. Anyone tried it yet?
It took two of us… moving half of my house (aka Alfie & all his “stuffs” as my Italian friend would say) was not something one can do by herself. The “stuffs” included toys, food (bowls), scratching post & mat, litter box, catnip, water fountain, cat repellant spray, and most importantly, the cat in the box. OK, “half of my house” was an understatement, but hey, ho, Alfie was going to spend 3 whole days in a completely new place. I hoped he would not miss me too much and he would enjoy my friend’s place. Actually… I secretly hoped he would miss me a little bit.
What I really love about Alfie is that he’s super easy-going. I mean, look at him, he immediately felt at home… maybe too much at home…
Alfie TV… a new channel in the UPC offer…
Alfie, you cannot bite the people taking care of you. This will have direct implications for your food supply, my dear…
After 3 days away, Alfie has finally returned back home. I am happy to report he still remembered me and gave me the best treat ever: endless cuddles and purrrrrs.
Successful weekend break for both of us… checked!
Oops, I did it again… went for a weekend break and arranged with my lovely friends to cat-sit Alfie. This second time was more extreme: it involved moving Alfie & half of my house (meaning all Alfie’s stuff) to my friends’ place. I’d love to tell you all about it now, but that would mean less time playing with Alfie (who has just returned home). And if there’s one thing I would give up blogging about Alfie for, is… Alfie himself.
So you’ll have to come back soon to hear the whole story 🙂
p.s. here’s a glimpse of what Alfie was up to at my friends’ place…
The fact that I come from Transylvania does not imply I should have a vampire kitten, thank you very much….
… or does this double canines situation simply mean that my kitten is teething?!? Do cats even teethe?
After a fair bit of research I found out that kittens do teethe, starting at 4 months, until they are about 7 (when their grown up teeth are fully grown). Adult cats have 30 teeth: 12 incisors, 4 canines, 10 premolars and 4 molars. Baby teeth rarely shed with roots so, you may see rootless crowns lying on the floor. Because it’s very common for kittens to accidentally swallow their baby teeth, don’t expect to find too many. Actually, I only found one: (I wonder if kids get the Tooth Fairy, do kittens get the Tooth Mouse?)
Does teething hurt kittens? Cats have quite high pain threshold, so teething won’t bother them too much unless they get a gum infection (you would notice bad breath and a very red line across the gum line near to the teeth). If you see that your kitten is bothered by teething and starts chewing things, you can give him a fluffy toy, straws!, or hard cat food to chew on. Never ever feed them bones, as the bone shards can cut their stomachs open. I also gave Alfie a Philips Avent baby teether – thanks my dear friend Pravini! He was scared of it in the beginning and now he just ignores it, so no success there…
OK, I know what you’re thinking: Seriously, Oana, a baby teether?!? Slap some sense into me, please!