Category Archives: Pets

New Banner Photo

I updated the photo at the top of this blog. Before, it was the three kittens of the J team. Now it’s the same dog bed, but it’s being shared by our 60 lb dog, Mandy, and our 24 lb cat, Jinx. Jinx is a lot older here, you can tell by his orange cape.

Mandy sharing her dog bed with Jinx, the very bold cat, both taking up about the same amount of space on the bed.

Yes, that’s the exact same cat, Jinx, above on the right, and below on the right. He was 99% white as a kitten, with tiny orange hints on his face, ears, and tail. His Siamese bloodline means his cape appears after age 1, and darkens over time. One of my old cats, Spooky, was siamese, but he wasn’t a “flame point”, he was a “seal point”, more grey than orange.

Right to left, Jinx, Jitter, Journey – the J Team

Yes, Jinx was nearly ALL white as a kitten. He stayed that way up until he was about a year and a half old. His orange cape developed slowly over the next two years, and is darker now where it first developed, down from his shoulders through his spine, but spread quite far down the sides. He looks Orange when lying on his belly, and white when lying on his back.

The J Team’s mother was a friend’s wife’s cat. She didn’t know kittens were at risk of getting pregnant at age 6 months, so she hadn’t yet been fixed when she got pregnant. Rosie was a sweet, under 10 lb white and orange female. Since Jinx is so huge (24 lb), and both Jitter and Journey are larger than Rosie (12 & 14 lbs), we can assume the father was larger than Rosie, and Jinx’s cape reveals his Siamese heritage.

If that ever happens to you, a friend’s cat gets pregnant, and you want a great set of cats, adopt two (even better, all) of the kittens. They will get along much better long term, but I guarantee you their personalities will vary in ways you can’t imagine. Especially if you have an older cat, because adopting a lone kitten means at least one older cat will become a target to get pounced upon, and hunted, and chewed endlessly. I’ve seen it.

When you adopt siblings, they are already used to playing with their siblings, so when an older cats rejects their playful pounces, they aren’t as offended, they just instead play only with their buddies. Sometimes the older cats enjoy the kittens, at least, at first. But as long as the sibling buffer exists, that older cat relationship will endure longer, with both of them. It takes a lot of pressure off the older cats, especially the ones that have a problem with the kitten’s existence.

But please adopt responsibly. If you can’t afford $200 yearly vet bills per animal, you really can’t afford a pet. If you aren’t able to commit the next 25 years to maintaining your family’s needs, you don’t deserve the opportunity to adopt one now. Maybe adopt an older animal from a shelter, before they can euthanize it.Pets aren’t disposable items, no one else will adopt them if you get tired of one and dump them at a shelter. 80% of adult animals left at shelters get euthanized. Sad fact.

Individual Personality Traits

People usually react surprised when I mention we have six cats and two dogs. Six cats is too many, I’m the first to admit. I probably should have stuck to just the first two, but I love all of them so much now, it’s hard to imagine being without them. The three youngest are siblings, and they are just the sweetest cats you can ever imagine. They’ve never known a single hostile person or animal, one that didn’t like them, and they are as forward and friendly as you can imagine. The workmen who stop by are always impressed with Jinx. Jinx likes everybody.

I realized something this morning. Jitter and Journey, the two orange sisters, share a number of traits in common. Neither one likes to be still when being petted. Both of them will walk across your lap, or next to you, over and over, rubbing up against you, letting you stroke the fur on their backs as they pass. There are times they’ll curl up in my lap, but that comes later, after the purr-engine has been thoroughly warmed up.

Their much heavier brother Jinx, he’s not like that. He likes to climb into my lap (or convince me I should pick him up) to get petted. Jinx is the loudest purrer I’ve ever heard. You can hear him from across the room, if the TV isn’t on.

I treat my lap as “first come, first served” as far as kitty cuddles go. Lately, Jinx has been the first one in my lap in the evenings, and Squeak is starting to look upset. Jitter has also lap-blocked Squeak a few times. Peanut never seeks laptime, but he will allow you to scratch his neck while sitting on your lap, if you pick him up and carry him over to your chair. He never stays long, so don’t worry, it’s not you.

Sparkle and Jitter are always competing for high score in the “cutest & sweetest girl cat” category. Both of them have perfected the huge watery eyes with a sad kitten “mew!” that will melt your heart. Sparkle, at 9 lbs, the smallest cat in the house, doesn’t take guff from anyone else. Jinx, Squeak, Peanut, Mandy (the 60 lb mutt), they all suffer “the death of 1,000 whacks” she likes to dish out if someone gets in her way, or maybe just annoys her by walking past. She rarely gets frisky enough to try that stuff with us, it’s usually just the other animals. It’s a domination thing. She wants to be thought of as the queen.

Sparkle also hates to be rubbed on her belly, but the little vixen will roll over on her back on the bed, and expose her belly for anyone to touch. If you see this, think twice. She’s like a little bear trap – put your hand on her belly, and you’ll have four claws and a mouth on your hand before you know it. If you can resist touching her, she’s usually quite sweet.

The difference in weight between the six is astounding. The three girls are all lighter than the three boys, Sparkle, Jitter, Journey are 9, 12, and 13 lbs, Peanut, Squeak, and Jinx are 14, 16, 22 lbs. When a 16 lb cat climbs onto your stomach in bed, you know it. But when Sparkle climbs up on top of me, she’s immediately recognizable because her lighter footsteps don’t hurt at all. I like it when she falls asleep while laying on top of me. I’m pretty sure I couldn’t sleep of Squeak curled up on top of me. Squeak usually curls up on my side, Journey between my ankles, Jinx with one paw draped over my leg, like he’s a 70 year man holding up the bar.

The Best Ever Day

I wanted to write about the best moment ever, I just had. I work an odd shift, okay, 3rd shift, from Thu night thru Mon night. So my two nights off are Tuesday night and Wednesday night. Those days, I tend to fall asleep much earlier than usual. Most nights, I’ll sleep 9:30am-7:30pm, but on my mid-week weekends, it might be 4am-4m, giving me even more time with my wife.

Today, I woke about 3pm, after more than 9 hours sleep. I came to realize I had all six cats on the bed with me. Such a magical moment. The cats were littered about, Sparkle, my tiniest girl, was welcome on my lap, Squeak, my best bud, was close against my left side, Jitter was within arms reach on my right side, with Jinx and Journey curled up between my legs. Of course, Peanut was way off on Kim’s side of the bed, avoiding anything remotely resembling cuddling.

Peanut is kind of a bully!

Yesterday, I witnessed Peanut chase Squeak around and out of the room. Peanut was definitely the aggressor.

Then, today, all three boys are sleeping on the bed together in the spare bedroom. Not touching, but pretty close together. Who knows what Squeak says to the other boys. Maybe he’s sarcastic.

Jinx appears to be aware that he is the heaviest cat in the house, and has been confronting Squeak, and forcing him into rough play.

Source: Jinx is kind of a bully! – Whistl