Struggling With Play Time

calicosrspecial

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Wow, that makes my day!! I am so glad he is doing well AND he and Ember are doing well. Laying with you together???? LOVE IT!!!

I totally agree with you (which is not a surprise).

So true. But you are using the time to protect yourself and others AND accomplish things. So it sounds like you are doing really well. Good job!!

Yes, that is so true. People are driving less. I don't go on facebook but that is really good to hear. I love to hear animals are coming back to some places. Some doctors believe that pollution is a factor making Covid 19 worse. Maybe with less pollution more people can make it through it? Maybe we can focus more on the environment going forward.

You are busy!!! I admire you for doing all that!!! It will come back. Just take care of yourself and your mom and get through this and it will all come back. Don't forget your own animals to practice your photography. A good time to spend more time with them also.

I hope so too. Moms and wives do a pretty good job keeping hubbies in line. ;) Let's hope.

It will happen again and if we all do it now and social distance we can get back sooner. Good, I am glad you will get a lot of singing!! :) Well deserved.

I am so glad it came in!! Whew. Did you not order dry food? Or is it backlogged as well? Hahahaha, ummmmmm, I think it is popular. Good try. I am guessing since you are on an auto-refill they take care of you better.

Yes, as more info has come in it sure has gotten more scary. Men are more likely to die vs women it is believed but that can be due to bad habits of smoking and drinking and eating poorly. Smoking is a bigger risk factor. They are thinking younger people that are vaping are more at risk. Lung disease, heart disease, diabetes, cancer survivors, those with immune system issues. In Italy the majority of death were from older people with 3 risk factors. And polluted air areas are a risk factor. There is a belief that those on anti-inflamms could be more at risk so they suggest using Tylenol to deal with the fever. But all this could be subject to change as the data is not enough and robust enough. They are still trying to figure it out. Just take it serious and act like you are at high risk to just have extra protection. In NYC some like 20% of the hospitalizations are of those under 44 or 49. I am glad you and your mom are taking it serious. It is really important. The world needs you two!!!

I hope her business is more immune and/or has the wherewithal to get through it. Hopefully the govt can bridge the gap and help keep people in their jobs. It is more important than ever. I feel terrible for the people in the airline industry, hotels, restaurants, gig workers, etc. It is heartbreaking. A lot of people can't afford an emergency $500 bill so losing their income can be devastating.

That is good. Just steer clear of other people. Stay at least 6 feet away or maybe even more.

Yes. So true. Awwwww, Stella is loving this.

You are welcome and thank you. We are in isolation. So hopefully with that and doing the groceries or anything from the outside right we should get through it. Hopefully we all do get through this soon. It is going to get sadder before it gets better. :(

:) Thank you. I do really try not to ramble.................................
 

Animal Freak

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I might've spoken too soon. No, things really are better. They just had a little problem last night because we left some crescent rolls wrapped in aluminum foil on the stove. Ash (I'm assuming it was him, it usually is) got it off the stove and managed to open it open. I heard Ember hissing and spitting when I was trying to go to sleep.

Yes, we're getting some stuff done. We don't actually have a ton of extra time during the week since we both still have our normal stuff to do, but more time over the weekends. Sometimes it's hard to get motivated though.

Well, I try not to put too much faith into what I read on Facebook, but I think it was briefly on the news as well. It would be nice if we could be a bit more compassionate about the environment.

No, I didn't get dry food. We just got a bag of the UR food from the vet for the cats and they don't get much. I always get, like, a 14lb bag for Stella and she gets 2/3 of a cup a day, so it lasts a while.

It seems like there's a lot that can make a person a "high risk," which is really frightening. Unfortunately, pretty much everywhere is polluted. Us not being so active has helped. Well, we definitely didn't start off taking it so seriously, but we've had to become more cautious, especially as this has been killing younger people.

It's certainly going to be hard for a lot of people, but we'll all pull through. It does show how everything affects everything else and how easily our economy can be brought down though.

I'm sure we're all in for some hard times before it gets better, but hopefully it doesn't have to get too much worse.
 

calicosrspecial

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I am guessing Ash is feeling much better then......... ;) Cats.

That makes sense. Well, at least a little is getting done. Yes, motivation can be difficult. :/

Hahahaha, from what I understand you are wise to question what is on facebook. Yes, on reputable news channels it can be trusted more. I wish so too. The progress over my life has been great in some ways but worse in others. Hopefully your generation can improve it.

Ahhhh, then that is pretty good service.

:( Yes, it is a nasty virus. Even for healthy people they say it is horrible. The best thing to do is not get it but whether that is ultimately possible who knows. Just have to do our best to try to stay safe. Early on the info wasn't as informative given the lack of knowledge etc so I think a lot of people took it more lightly. The good news is now people are taking it very seriously which should help protect us all.

Some areas are more polluted than others. It is more air quality driven so it is more the eastern part of the USA that could be more at risk. Those areas with factories and downwind of factories etc it seems.

Yes, it is horrible. It is always the people that can least afford it that get hurt. :( Heartbreaking. Just good people doing their best it always seems. Hopefully, it can pass quickly and the pain isn't lasting.

:( Yes. Many financially. Many psychologically. Many both. It is going to be hard for many, many people sadly. But hopefully we learn from this and get stronger, better prepared, improve things. Hopefully it is a wake up call for the people, our leaders, etc. So that this never happens again to humans or if it happens the negatives will not be as bad. I am not sure I am optimistic but I hope that is the case. :/
 

Animal Freak

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Sorry for not replying. I just haven't been on my laptop much.

Yeah, Facebook isn't the best place to get your information, but it's the easiest way since I'm on there anyway and it's always showing me stories.

This virus was definitely taken too lightly in the beginning. We really didn't have enough information. Even now, it's all questionable and a lot of people still aren't taking it seriously. Many are, but there's still some issues. My mom keeps finding all the people who aren't though. And they're usually elderly people who should be high risk!

It's crazy how fast this virus is spreading though... And to imagine how many people haven't been tested...

Unfortunately, Ember's gone back to being a bit sensitive. We haven't had any major issues, but there's been some problems between her and Ash around food and once when I accidentally stepped on Ash's paw. I was hoping maybe the Gabapentin sort of "reset" things, but it seems the effects have worn off.
 

calicosrspecial

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It is ok. I totally understand.

So true.

Totally agree. I think now if people are listening to the right people (the experts) it is pretty clear cut. BUT not everyone is listening to the experts. There was a Pastor in Tampa saying it is basically nothing. It was really scary, irresponsible, and dangerous (for everyone). You are right, many people are taking it seriously. :( Your mom has bad luck. It is important to stay away from those people. Amazing it is elderly/at risk people not paying attention. It is an existential risk to them and to others. The media (for the most part) is trying to educate but if people are watching certain media or listening to certain leaders it is dangerous as the risks are not being communicated. It is frustrating. :( All we can do is educate ourselves, protect ourselves and try to educate others. :/

Well, this is how viruses spread. It is pretty much on target for the science behind it. That is why it is so important to take steps to mitigate the spread. If left unchecked it grows exponentially until it runs out of hosts/people. :( There are A LOT of people out there with the virus. Now, even if untested they (20% of them probably) will end up in the hospital so it will show up in the numbers even without proper testing. But extensive testing has to happen to understand the virus better. It is out there more than people in the middle of the country think. :/ It is not just a coastal situation and we are now seeing that in Detroit, Chicago, New Orleans, etc. We'll see it more in those places not taking it seriously. :( It doesn't care if a person believes in it or not. ( I just hope people take it seriously for their own health and for others. :/

Well, just try to reassure her and him. Make those positive associations. DO everything you can to diffuse any tension. Just the basic building blocks. Use food, love, etc. You can do it.
 

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It would be a life changer if I could build her confidence. She acts confident when nothing changes and doesn't have a problem letting me know what she wants, but she gets freaked easily and takes it out on the boys. Ash in particular. In fact, do you know why one cat would be more threatening than another? I mean, Ash is a big, scary cat, but I never imagined them looking at size or anything like that. A threat is a threat, big or small. But her mother always went after Frost and she always goes after Ash.
Okay hear me out. Let her kill something. Like, find a cricket (or something like that if you can stand it) and let her kill it. playing builds confidence because it simulates hunting-if you can't get her to play, let her hunt. OR you could buy a hex bug. These must be played with under strict supervision, and you'd have to give her a treat to make up for not being able to kill something, but you could try it. There's no formula for playing with cats-you gotta figure out what they like and hope they like it enough to play with you. And I think it's not merely about they exercise with them either, they will get it on their own one way or the other. But the mental stimulation play-hunting gives is very important.
 

Animal Freak

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Okay hear me out. Let her kill something. Like, find a cricket (or something like that if you can stand it) and let her kill it. playing builds confidence because it simulates hunting-if you can't get her to play, let her hunt. OR you could buy a hex bug. These must be played with under strict supervision, and you'd have to give her a treat to make up for not being able to kill something, but you could try it. There's no formula for playing with cats-you gotta figure out what they like and hope they like it enough to play with you. And I think it's not merely about they exercise with them either, they will get it on their own one way or the other. But the mental stimulation play-hunting gives is very important.
Thanks for the suggestion, but Ember is already a master of catching flies. I wish I could keep the bugs out! She's honestly the easiest to get to play as well.
 

Animal Freak

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It is ok. I totally understand.

So true.

Totally agree. I think now if people are listening to the right people (the experts) it is pretty clear cut. BUT not everyone is listening to the experts. There was a Pastor in Tampa saying it is basically nothing. It was really scary, irresponsible, and dangerous (for everyone). You are right, many people are taking it seriously. :( Your mom has bad luck. It is important to stay away from those people. Amazing it is elderly/at risk people not paying attention. It is an existential risk to them and to others. The media (for the most part) is trying to educate but if people are watching certain media or listening to certain leaders it is dangerous as the risks are not being communicated. It is frustrating. :( All we can do is educate ourselves, protect ourselves and try to educate others. :/

Well, this is how viruses spread. It is pretty much on target for the science behind it. That is why it is so important to take steps to mitigate the spread. If left unchecked it grows exponentially until it runs out of hosts/people. :( There are A LOT of people out there with the virus. Now, even if untested they (20% of them probably) will end up in the hospital so it will show up in the numbers even without proper testing. But extensive testing has to happen to understand the virus better. It is out there more than people in the middle of the country think. :/ It is not just a coastal situation and we are now seeing that in Detroit, Chicago, New Orleans, etc. We'll see it more in those places not taking it seriously. :( It doesn't care if a person believes in it or not. ( I just hope people take it seriously for their own health and for others. :/

Well, just try to reassure her and him. Make those positive associations. DO everything you can to diffuse any tension. Just the basic building blocks. Use food, love, etc. You can do it.
I'm getting really bad about responding to messages...

It's amazing how many people aren't taking this seriously. The dog forum I'm on is UK based and they have all sorts of rules of only going out once a day, staying local, not getting in the car and driving... I don't know of any rules like that in the US. In fact, it still all seems rather vague. I still take the dog out once or twice a day and my mom has been going with us after work since she's getting off early now. The park is busier than ever. The weather is getting nice and when we go in the evenings there's always people there. Most are good about keeping their distance and we're always careful about moving out of the way if they don't. I saw a beautiful (and giant) GSD yesterday. I always stay away from people with dogs because of Stella. He was an amazing dog though. And his owner said he was still a puppy! He looked full grown except one of his ears had a bit of a flop to it.

I've heard that this virus might be spreading to animals now. Not sure if it's true, honestly. There was something on Facebook about some tigers in a zoo being infected. My mom said someone she works with told her about a cat getting infected after it's owner tested positive, but I don't know the lady who told her or how she learned about it. That scares me more than anything though.

In other news, Ash is still doing well. We haven't had any fights lately and he definitely seems to be peeing more. And Frost bit me on the head last night. :headscratch: I don't know why. I was trying to sleep when he got in bed, started kneading me, then began sniffing my hair and ended up biting me. Not very hard, but it hurt a little.

We also had cats either mating or fighting the other night. I heard weird noises and all the animals freaked out. Ember and Ash were growling. My mom went out and scared the cats off. She saw one.
 

calicosrspecial

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That is ok. There is a lot going on...................

I know. It is crazy. I heard the streets in NYC today are busier than they have been. :( Ireland and the UK are much more strict. Most people are taking it seriously but those that aren't will ruin it for everyone else. The main thing is to stay the proper distance (6 feet+) and stay out of groups. Hopefully people are doing that. Sounds like a gorgeous GSD. Just be careful touching a dog as they could have virus on them and it could transmit. So make sure you don;t touch your face, wash your hands, wash your clothes, etc.

I am so glad your mom still has her job. I hope she gets through this.

Yes, I get updates from the Cornell Feline Health Center at the Cornell Univ Vet School. Last week they mentioned the first case of a household cat getting Covid 19. I believe it was from the owner. And yes, Tigers in a NYC Zoo appear to have gotten it from an asymptomatic zookeeper.

Here is the link to the Cornell site: Coronavirus Update

I am so glad Ash is doing better. And they are getting along. Great news. Hopefully he is past the threat and is well on his way to recovery. Yes, they will do that. He gave you a love bit or a groom. Happens often. :/

:( Yep, that time of the year. That could be a big reason for the trouble the cats were having. :/ I am guessing TNR is on hold everywhere. :(

Stay safe!!
 

Animal Freak

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It's sort of feeling like I'm the only person who's actually busier now! I have tons of homework.

The UK is definitely more strict than the US. There have been police hanging around the park lately after some kids decided to play basketball there one day, but they haven't done much about any groups walking or riding bikes. I didn't touch the dog that I saw even though I wanted to. I don't get that close to people with dogs, anyway, because of Stella.

So far we both still have our jobs. I don't think my vet can keep up with this if it goes on for too long though. They haven't even fixed their door that currently has no doorknob. They hook a lead to one of the knobs and threaded it through the hole so we have to pull the lead to open the door. :doh: I don't see how they can afford to stay open for long.

See, the possibility of animals getting it scares me more than just about anything else. Seems like everyone is concerned about them being able to get it from the animals, but I'm more concerned about the other way around! I'd feel terrible if my animals got sick because of me. And I'm not sure how I could afford it if they all four got it.

Ash is still doing fine. I got some new calming treats and I want to say they're actually helping. Nothing major, no changes in overall behavior, but Ash and Ember seem calmer around each other. I've actually had them both on my lap or at least next to me a few times. Doesn't seem to help Frost though. I don't know what to do about him. He's driving me nuts. If Ember gets within three feet of him--whether she's the one who approaches him or he's the one who approaches her--he hisses at her. Frequently, he lunges and smacks her. He tries yelling at me sometimes too. Now he's even starting it with Ash! The other day he smacked Ash on the back leg and Ash look at him like he couldn't believe it before darting off just to have Frost grab him by the back of the neck. They stayed like that for a moment until Ash made a noise and jerked away, which, of course, caused Ember to jump in the middle of it.:sigh:

I did see a cat that was heavily pregnant the other day. She's usually a slender cat, so I noticed the difference immediately. So sad. There's already so many cats there. Now there's going to be so many more. And the shelters are going to be overflowing with kittens while we're still in the middle of this pandemic. I hope they can keep adopting them out, but I'd imagine it'll be difficult. They have a few litters of puppies that are getting close to being adopted out. I almost talked myself into fostering again, but then I realized I have four essays due in May that I hadn't even started. But the semester ends on May 13th and I do think I want to foster this summer.
 

calicosrspecial

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Wow. I am glad you are busy. I was a bit worried not hearing from you. Homework is good for once. Not only to learn but to keep people away from others. :)

Yes now but they were a bit too late. UK is having a horrible time with it. That is good that the police are trying to do something. Social distancing is the only way we will get this to peter out. I am glad you didn't touch the dog and stay way from people.

That is so good. I just hope you both can keep them through this. I know, it is so hard for small businesses. Hopefully the vet got help with the Paycheck Protection Program from the govt. Though not everyone could. It is so heartbreaking. People are under so much stress in every way. Emotionally, financially, etc. It breaks my heart.

Yes. I am not sure if the animals are at risk of getting so ill like the people. Something to watch. Let's hope it doesn't hit animals like humans. What I worry about is the health of the owners and whether they live and if they can afford to even keep their animals. I think that is probably the bigger risk than Covid to animals (and it looks like it hopefully dogs don't get it and hopefully it is not bad for cats - but I haven't see new research or info on it). If you and your mom don't get it (and let's hope you both don't) then the animals shouldn't. Just stay safe and make sure you protect yourself.

"I've actually had them both on my lap or at least next to me a few times." - WOW this is GREAT!!! I am so glad he/they are doing so well. Oh my, Frost. Well, hissing is just communication. Ideally we would not want it to happen but as long as it doesn't escalate into a true fight. The thing with Ash might have been a rough play thing. Just distract him to avoid any negative encounter. Try to make those positive associations and try to make them be as positive as positive.

:( Yes, sadly it is going to happen a lot. I can't do TNR now because if I would get Covid I will probably die. So I can afford the risk. A lot of us are in that situation so more cats will be intact and sadly bad endings will be large. But what can we do? It is just so heartbreaking and horrible.

Yes, I think you are wise. Focus on the essays and get through school then when you have time you can consider fostering. Sounds like a great plan to me.

I am just so glad to hear you are safe and you both still have your jobs. PLEASE stay safe. Social distance,, wash your hands, don't touch your face, clean surfaces etc. If we all do it hopefully we can save lives and the quality of life.
 
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Animal Freak

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Sorry, didn't mean to worry you. It's just every time I finally get a break from homework, I just don't even feel like thinking anymore. There's so many things I want to do, need to do, but I've barely had time to take care of Stella. I have been getting myself to draw a little pretty much every day though. Today is the first easy day I've had during the week in a while and that's just because my ethics teacher apparently decided not to assign anything!

I heard another country (Denmark?) shut down and started self-isolated after only one death from coronavirus and they're actually starting to reopen things again. Too bad more countries didn't do that.

I hope so. So far neither of our places of work have said anything about closing down since my work cut their hours down. I really don't think they can stay open if they don't get enough help from the government though. Honestly wouldn't be the end of the world if I lost my job as I don't make much anyway and could go to freelance writing, but my mom definitely needs to keep hers.

Well, my particular animals aren't at risk of being surrendered. Even if I did lose my job, I have enough money saved up that I could afford their basic necessities, though I would probably go to a cheaper food just to save as much money as I could. It would honestly be easier for me if dogs got it and cats didn't! At least I only have one dog. If a single one of my cats got, I'd imagine they'd all three end up with it. Ember would probably be the one to have few or no symptoms. That cat could probably survive the worst of viruses. I definitely don't want them getting this. The boys quit eating too easily and it's so difficult to get them eating again.

Ash and Ember have been doing really well. Not saying it's perfect, but as close as we've been in years. I've even seen them playing together a little which is something I haven't seen in a very long time. I keep forgetting to give them the calming treats, but they've still been doing good.

Frost is still ridiculous. Sometimes he seems a bit better, but then he just picks up again. Quite frankly, I'm tired of his "communication." He's being a bully. He can't prevent her from navigating through the house. It's just not something I can sit back and let happen. It won't become a real fight because Ember won't stand up to him. She just tries to give him a wide berth, but it's physically impossible for her to get far enough away from him. He walks towards her and then hisses at her even though she'll just be sitting there minding her own business. She seems to be handling it better since I started giving them the calming treats, but before that I could see her confidence dwindling. She was avoiding him more, stopping when she saw him, walking in the other direction. She wouldn't be able to get to my room while he was in the hall (which he seems to hang out there quite a bit) and she gets anxious when she can't get to my room. And when she gets anxious she takes it out on Ash and we get thrown back into that cycle again. It's impossible to prevent these situations. This house isn't big enough for them to go anywhere without crossing paths and he's unpredictable. Sometimes he does nothing, sometimes she can get within a foot, sometimes she's still probably close to five feet away when he hisses. And I don't think the thing with Ash was play. Ash certainly didn't seem to think it was so fun. I've been with the boys for a little under nine years and that's just not how they play. Frost is usually the one to lay on his back.

It's hard. A part of me wants to be excited at the prospect of kittens running around (who doesn't love kittens?), but I'm well aware of what kind of life those kittens are in for. :frown: On a different (but not unrelated) topic, do you know about how long a semi-feral can live if given food, water, and shelter but still living primarily outside, hanging out on the streets, and living in a large group of cats? My mom and I were talking about it the other day because Old Tom really does like an old cat. My mom said she was surprised he could still mate at his age and I had to point out that we don't actually know how old he is. I know ferals don't usually live much more than four years, but this is a well-established colony that's been provided with food and some shelter as well as a fenced-in yard.

I am so excited that summer is coming and I'll be able to foster, but I'm so stressed the end of the semester is coming and I still have three essays to do and finals to study for! The essays aren't really a problem, but finals... Ugh. But then I'll foster! There's a littler I was hoping to get to foster (some of them have odd-eyes!), but I think I'm going to just miss them. They'll be old enough to leave mom in about two weeks I think and the semester ends in three weeks.

We will be safe! We ordered masks and they were supposed to have come Tuesday of last week, but they're still not here!
 

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Hi!
About Frost - it's escalating, so something's going on. He's been to the vet lately? If so and he checked out, can you do something to get him out of the house? Take him for walks, take him for car rides, something, anything , to give him a different perspective and a little mental exercise if not actual physical exercise (by going for walks).
 

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Hi!
About Frost - it's escalating, so something's going on. He's been to the vet lately? If so and he checked out, can you do something to get him out of the house? Take him for walks, take him for car rides, something, anything , to give him a different perspective and a little mental exercise if not actual physical exercise (by going for walks).
This has been a slow progression over several months. Ash was diagnosed with arthritis at six years of age, so that was my first thought when I noticed the change in behavior. I felt around on Frost for any tender places, found none, and put him on glucosamine (what Ash is on for his arthritis) for probably a couple of weeks with no change. He has been to the vet, but not for this though I have brought it up to the vet I work for who has had rather little to say. Frost went after he got very ill a little while ago and stopped eating. He saw two different vets at that time. When he went to the vet he got bloodwork done and some level was a bit high, but now I can't remember what it was. Thyroid? I'll have to find the paperwork, but the vet wasn't worried as she thought it was because it was a hard draw to get the blood. I do need to get his teeth cleaned though. I was told they weren't actually all that bad, but did need a good cleaning. I put it off because I had already spent hundreds of dollars on vet bills and different foods to get him eating again (and ended up spending a few hundred more not long after when both Ash and Ember started having problems urinated!). I wanted to get him in to get his teeth cleaned, but the other two decided they needed a turn going to the vet. Then Ash decided once wasn't enough and ended up going again!

I'd love to take him for walks. I think he'd greatly enjoy it once he got used to it. I even have a harness and leash. However, our backyard is tiny and is the dog's bathroom, and I'm terrified of taking them out front because there's always dogs running loose. Most are friendly, but I've no idea how they'd react to a cat. Our next door neighbor has a tendency to leave her dog outside unsupervised and he often comes over to our porch. I could perhaps take him to the park (people walk dogs there a lot, but very few off leash), but at this point I'm just not sure if I have the time. Once I'm done with school I should definitely be able to do so. I've been wanting to get back to doing training sessions with the cats too, but once again it's a time issue and especially doing it for three cats.
 

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Maybe even a short car ride - it might not seem like it would do much, but if you can have a window rolled partway down and just sit in the car in a park for a few minutes, just the two of you, it might do wonders for him to hear and smell all the different things, (and you too :hugs::heartshape:)
 

Animal Freak

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Maybe even a short car ride - it might not seem like it would do much, but if you can have a window rolled partway down and just sit in the car in a park for a few minutes, just the two of you, it might do wonders for him to hear and smell all the different things, (and you too :hugs::heartshape:)
I'm not sure I'll be able to do it every day until I'm done with finals, but I can try to at least start getting him used to going out and getting in the car. I let him out of the carrier once after a vet trip (while we were stopped and I kept him with me) and he was really curious. A bit nervous, but definitely curious.
 

calicosrspecial

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Sorry, didn't mean to worry you. It's just every time I finally get a break from homework, I just don't even feel like thinking anymore. There's so many things I want to do, need to do, but I've barely had time to take care of Stella. I have been getting myself to draw a little pretty much every day though. Today is the first easy day I've had during the week in a while and that's just because my ethics teacher apparently decided not to assign anything!

I heard another country (Denmark?) shut down and started self-isolated after only one death from coronavirus and they're actually starting to reopen things again. Too bad more countries didn't do that.

I hope so. So far neither of our places of work have said anything about closing down since my work cut their hours down. I really don't think they can stay open if they don't get enough help from the government though. Honestly wouldn't be the end of the world if I lost my job as I don't make much anyway and could go to freelance writing, but my mom definitely needs to keep hers.

Well, my particular animals aren't at risk of being surrendered. Even if I did lose my job, I have enough money saved up that I could afford their basic necessities, though I would probably go to a cheaper food just to save as much money as I could. It would honestly be easier for me if dogs got it and cats didn't! At least I only have one dog. If a single one of my cats got, I'd imagine they'd all three end up with it. Ember would probably be the one to have few or no symptoms. That cat could probably survive the worst of viruses. I definitely don't want them getting this. The boys quit eating too easily and it's so difficult to get them eating again.

Ash and Ember have been doing really well. Not saying it's perfect, but as close as we've been in years. I've even seen them playing together a little which is something I haven't seen in a very long time. I keep forgetting to give them the calming treats, but they've still been doing good.

Frost is still ridiculous. Sometimes he seems a bit better, but then he just picks up again. Quite frankly, I'm tired of his "communication." He's being a bully. He can't prevent her from navigating through the house. It's just not something I can sit back and let happen. It won't become a real fight because Ember won't stand up to him. She just tries to give him a wide berth, but it's physically impossible for her to get far enough away from him. He walks towards her and then hisses at her even though she'll just be sitting there minding her own business. She seems to be handling it better since I started giving them the calming treats, but before that I could see her confidence dwindling. She was avoiding him more, stopping when she saw him, walking in the other direction. She wouldn't be able to get to my room while he was in the hall (which he seems to hang out there quite a bit) and she gets anxious when she can't get to my room. And when she gets anxious she takes it out on Ash and we get thrown back into that cycle again. It's impossible to prevent these situations. This house isn't big enough for them to go anywhere without crossing paths and he's unpredictable. Sometimes he does nothing, sometimes she can get within a foot, sometimes she's still probably close to five feet away when he hisses. And I don't think the thing with Ash was play. Ash certainly didn't seem to think it was so fun. I've been with the boys for a little under nine years and that's just not how they play. Frost is usually the one to lay on his back.

It's hard. A part of me wants to be excited at the prospect of kittens running around (who doesn't love kittens?), but I'm well aware of what kind of life those kittens are in for. :frown: On a different (but not unrelated) topic, do you know about how long a semi-feral can live if given food, water, and shelter but still living primarily outside, hanging out on the streets, and living in a large group of cats? My mom and I were talking about it the other day because Old Tom really does like an old cat. My mom said she was surprised he could still mate at his age and I had to point out that we don't actually know how old he is. I know ferals don't usually live much more than four years, but this is a well-established colony that's been provided with food and some shelter as well as a fenced-in yard.

I am so excited that summer is coming and I'll be able to foster, but I'm so stressed the end of the semester is coming and I still have three essays to do and finals to study for! The essays aren't really a problem, but finals... Ugh. But then I'll foster! There's a littler I was hoping to get to foster (some of them have odd-eyes!), but I think I'm going to just miss them. They'll be old enough to leave mom in about two weeks I think and the semester ends in three weeks.

We will be safe! We ordered masks and they were supposed to have come Tuesday of last week, but they're still not here!
I just worry......... Totally understandable. I can understand, I have been there before. That is cool you do have some time to draw. And that will help with stress so good in many ways,

Totally agree. New Zealand really reacted and I think they supposedly haven;t had a death (though it may be because they didn't test and assumed it wasn't Covid). But the lessen is, social distancing is a good defense. Some people can;t sadly but that is why it is important for us to do it to save them hopefully.

Yes, it is really important for your mom. Just today we learned that we now have 26.5M people who have lost their job in the last month or so. It is devastating, heartbreaking. Those people have families, small or no savings, etc. If we all social distance and remove this virus so it is more manageable then we can get people back to work. But everyone has to do their part and the govt and those individuals who can needs to help those people get through this and adjust. Hopefully, your mom and her company can get through this. I hope people are thinking more about other people nowadays. All the selfish stuff needs to stop and we need to think of and help others.

Yes. Hopefully we never need to think about the virus and our animals. If we stay healthy so should they. But we need to be careful and wipe down packages etc as well. I think you should subscribe to the Cornell Feline Health Center updates. You might enjoy it.

Awwwww, that is awesome!!! Rarely is it perfect but if they are playing together it is really, really good!!!

Yep, that is common the way Frost is acting. I think sometimes they just view it as a way of playing/having fun. They like to push the limits, get a response. It isn't like he wants to hurt her since he isn't attacking but he likes to annoy and get a reaction. As long as it is "just" hissing and Ember stays confident then it is manageable. Keep trying to distract and make a positive association and positive encounter. Having Ember as confident as possible is the best way to handle it.

Yes, ideally there would be no kittens in the wild as it is a hard life even with food and water. So to your question. The lifespan of a feral is very uncertain. Some kittens don't make it for a variety of reasons. Those that do it depends. Busy streets, predators, access to clean water, good food, parasites, etc. I think the average age is 5-7 years BUT that is a guess for your colony. It is best if they have clean water, food, safety from predators, humans trapping, bad people, etc. Ideally every cat should be at home and in the house only. Indoor/outdoor cats have a lower life expectancy. I have guy that comes around and I think he has been around for about 10 years. I THINK he was the father to one of the ones I have indoors now. He is tough, only eats with me once in a while. Not sure if anyone else is feeding him or if he is living off animals/hunting. But he would be the exception. I lost one of mine at age 7. Not sure if she got into poison or what. One day she was fine he next day gone. No trauma (car). So Old Tom is not unheard of but is lucky. And sometimes they do look older than you think. I wish I could take all the ferals in. I have seen hawks and owls take cats away, coyotes, etc. It is heartbreaking. But all we can do is give them the best life we can. We can only do the best which is give housing, food, water. We can't do much more. :(

Oh yes. I always loved the end of the school year!!! Of course those pesky finals and papers. But you can handle it. Just work hard now. If I could you can. Then fostering!! FUN TIMES coming. I am sure there will be other pups.

Just be careful with masks. Masks tend to protect others from you rather than you from others. So make sure you stay social distanced, wash your hands all the time, don;t touch your face. The tough part of masks is they move and we tend to want to adjust it and bring our hands to our face which is risky. So make sure they fit well and don't move and then don't touch your face. It is really important to stay cautious and disciplined. Don't get a false sense of security. Just be careful and smart and stay in as much as possible and away from people as much as possible.I just want you and your mom to be as safe as possible.
 

Animal Freak

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Well, there's always homework that I could (and probably should) be working on, but it gets way too overwhelming to work on schoolwork constantly. I have to make time to do other things. But with no ethics this week, I'm able to get stuff done for my essays and still don't have to rush or work constantly.

Hopefully we'll at least learn to react a bit faster in the future. Now we have to worry about a second wave that could be even worse than the first! I sure hope it doesn't get much worse.

It is sad to see so many people lose their jobs. And the businesses that may not be able to reopen. To be honest, I'm surprised the vet I work at was able to stay open. If the building is anything to go by, they can't exactly be making much. They do a lot of heavily discounted stuff for the shelter and seem to do free work for people a lot. I wasn't charged for a few things. I think my mom's company will get through it one way or another, but just not sure if that way will keep her working if this goes on too long. She's the newest hire and mostly takes the burden off of other people.

I'll have to subscribe to them. I definitely want to do as much as I can to keep my animals safe.

I've been really happy to see Ember and Ash interact peacefully. Ash still sometimes seems unsure if he's completely safe with her, but he seems to be learning that she isn't going to do anything to him.

Ember really wasn't staying confident though and, honestly, I'll admit I'm a bit protective over her. She's the smallest, the only female, has always been sort of the "newcomer" to them, she comes off as a bit dainty, and she's so sensitive. I hate seeing her think twice about walking to a certain area because he's in the way. I don't think I can bring myself to say it's just communication and leave it at that. He's preventing her from being as confident as she could be.

Well, I know these cats have food. I don't know if they're given water. I've seen a bowl, but haven't seen in it. They have to be getting water somewhere though. They have a good sized fenced in yard and access into an enclosed porch. They're in the middle of town, so relatively few predators, but it's a quiet town with few cars and speed limit usually around 30mph. I know cats do get hit and killed though. I do worry about ignorant kids, but most people tend to stick to themselves in this town. Unless the cats are actively doing something they don't like, I'd imagine most people would leave them alone. There are a lot of loose dogs, but I have my doubts that many of them are successful hunters. The cats are quite familiar with the storm drains and hide away in there frequently. Old Tom isn't a very large cat, but is a bit stocky. I don't think he'd be an easy one for a bird to take off with. I am guessing he looks older than he is. He has those squinty eyes and tilted ears that make him look like an old man who's seen everything bad the world could throw at him. I'm pretty confident he's the dominant tom. Thinking back, I'm not sure if there are many males sticking around. Can't be sure of course, but it seems like half the cats are tortoiseshells so unlikely to be male, and I can't say I've seen those big tom cheeks very often, but I'm no expert on the matter.

It's always great when school ends, of course. Finals are stressful. I've struggled with pretty much all of my classes at some point or another. Some have been a pretty much constant struggle. I'm hoping they'll be giving out study guides soon and the tests may have to be done online. I'm not sure what exactly they'll be doing about finals. I'm very excited about fostering though. I know it's difficult and there are parts of it I don't look forward to, but it is very rewarding.

Oh, I know. At least it offers some sort of protection. We all need to wear masks when we are out in public because you never know who could be asymptomatic or just not showing symptoms yet. If we all wear them then at least we can minimize the risk of spreading it. At this point we can't really base it off of who has symptoms because by then it's too late! I had trouble because we tried using cut up shirt sleeves as makeshift masks, but I couldn't get it to stay up.
 

calicosrspecial

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So true. It has been a long while since I went through that but I still remember. Balance is very good. Good to hear the load is a little lighter this week. Hang in there, you will get through it nicely.

So true. Yes, we'll probably have a rougher 2nd wave. HOPEFULLY the govt is better prepared and is honest about the reality. Fingers crossed. I saw a study from NY state that almost 14% of people had antibodies (meaning they were exposed to Covid). Now, the study is probably not the best (as it was on people visiting the grocery store which means it maybe had a skewed sample) but it suggests the virus was probably more wide spread than thought and started earlier. At least in NY state (NYC had I think a 20% rate). But we don't know if antibodies provide some protection (it may but we are not sure). Let's hope it does. A vaccine is what is really needed but it takes time. I think we will probably have more closures, more sadness, etc. But we need to prepare now to limit the problems.

It really is heartbreaking. Good hardworking people struggling. I hope we handle things better going forward and invest in our citizens more. Wow, the vet sounds really kind. I hope they do as well. I hope they get some PPP help. They sound like they do a lot of great things. It is people like that are true heroes. I hope your mom's company does get through it and she keeps her job. Sometimes being new (cheaper) can be advantageous. Of course, it can go the other way as well. Just work hard, do your best and all we can control is what we do. I'll pray for her.

I think it is interesting. And just maybe it will convince you to be a vet........................ ;)

It is wonderful. It is a process but as I always say "no negativity is a positive and builds confidence". Just keep trying to make their encounters as positive as possible and distract in a positive way as needed.

I hear you. It is very common. I had a girl I thought was dainty and "had to be protected" and I would catch her instigating chases etc. Sometimes it is surprising. Not saying Ember is the same situation. Just make sure you distract him to let her handle it a little better. As she gets more confident he will be less likely to think "bullying" will work. Use your instincts to diffuse the situation to build her confidence.

I am guessing people are giving water as well. It is interesting, mouse has the right amount of protein and moisture. So they could be having that in their diet as well. Old Tom sounds like a character. He is probably pretty good at defending his turf. not sure if he is neutered and the others spayed but that helps keep intacts from sticking around.

SO true. Make sure you utilize the resources to help you get through the classes. Everyone struggles at times but do everything you can to keep at it. Don't give up and work hard. You are obviously intelligent so just use every resource possible. I know it is harder not being "in" school now but chat and email with the teacher etc. AND it is harder when the subjects aren't as interesting but we have to have a base of knowledge and learn how to learn.

Fostering will be cool.

Totally true.It sounds like the asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic people really spread it (unknowingly). That is why wearing masks at all times and social distancing etc are so important. Yes, homemade masks are just not as good. Hopefully we can get to everyone having the better masks. The govt should be issuing them and getting companies to make them. A small investment to save lives.

Study hard!! Good luck on school!!
 
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