Pets.

Sweet action for kids 'n' cretins. Marjoram and capers.
Marky Dread
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Re: Pets.

Post by Marky Dread » 28 Jan 2019, 10:15pm

Thank you everyone for the very kind words. Mac was a special boy and will leave a huge whole in my life. I miss him dearly and he's simply irreplaceable.

Thanks again friends.
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Dr. Medulla
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Re: Pets.

Post by Dr. Medulla » 05 Feb 2019, 2:08pm

Weird discovery that we read and have been applying. So, Luke continues to be a bit of a bully to one of our girls. Doing some reading on conditioning cats, the order that they are fed can signal pecking order. He'd been getting his bowl placed first because his spot was closer to the feeding spot. So the last few days, we've put down their bowls first and then make him wait 20–30 seconds. And he's been a lot more calm, even cowed around them, while the bullied one is gaining confidence around him. We're wondering now if we'd been inadvertently been sending signals to them all that he was favoured. He's also knows when he's getting sent to the cooler now. If one of the girls scream at him or I sharply use his name, he heads up there on his own. The little fucker looks stupid, but he's surprisingly quick to learn.
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WestwayKid
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Re: Pets.

Post by WestwayKid » 05 Feb 2019, 2:31pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 2:08pm
Weird discovery that we read and have been applying. So, Luke continues to be a bit of a bully to one of our girls. Doing some reading on conditioning cats, the order that they are fed can signal pecking order. He'd been getting his bowl placed first because his spot was closer to the feeding spot. So the last few days, we've put down their bowls first and then make him wait 20–30 seconds. And he's been a lot more calm, even cowed around them, while the bullied one is gaining confidence around him. We're wondering now if we'd been inadvertently been sending signals to them all that he was favoured. He's also knows when he's getting sent to the cooler now. If one of the girls scream at him or I sharply use his name, he heads up there on his own. The little fucker looks stupid, but he's surprisingly quick to learn.
That's interesting - but it definitely makes sense. I'm glad it seems to be helping. I used to think that cats were mostly solitary - and while that is true when it comes to hunting - they definitely have a defined group structure when it comes to everything else. We have 4 males: 14, 10, 8, 3 and they have a defined pecking order. I feed them at the same time - but the younger 3 all defer to the 14 year old. He always gets first dibs on dinner. Nobody challenges the 14 year old, but the 10 and 8-year-old will fight with one another now and then. The 3-year-old is very much the junior partner and very much acts the part.
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Re: Pets.

Post by Dr. Medulla » 05 Feb 2019, 2:59pm

WestwayKid wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 2:31pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 2:08pm
Weird discovery that we read and have been applying. So, Luke continues to be a bit of a bully to one of our girls. Doing some reading on conditioning cats, the order that they are fed can signal pecking order. He'd been getting his bowl placed first because his spot was closer to the feeding spot. So the last few days, we've put down their bowls first and then make him wait 20–30 seconds. And he's been a lot more calm, even cowed around them, while the bullied one is gaining confidence around him. We're wondering now if we'd been inadvertently been sending signals to them all that he was favoured. He's also knows when he's getting sent to the cooler now. If one of the girls scream at him or I sharply use his name, he heads up there on his own. The little fucker looks stupid, but he's surprisingly quick to learn.
That's interesting - but it definitely makes sense. I'm glad it seems to be helping. I used to think that cats were mostly solitary - and while that is true when it comes to hunting - they definitely have a defined group structure when it comes to everything else. We have 4 males: 14, 10, 8, 3 and they have a defined pecking order. I feed them at the same time - but the younger 3 all defer to the 14 year old. He always gets first dibs on dinner. Nobody challenges the 14 year old, but the 10 and 8-year-old will fight with one another now and then. The 3-year-old is very much the junior partner and very much acts the part.
This is totally new for us. Our girls are littermates—proper sisters—so they've always understood each other. Our previous two cats, male and female, were about a year and a half apart in age. The male was the older one and he was so laid back that he immediately accepted her and there were never any adjustment issues. Luke's interaction with the girls has varied. The one he originally intimated seems to have developed a peaceful coexistence with him, even sometimes sort of playing with him. But she doesn't walk around him with so much trepidation, tho she will still hiss if he gets too close. But her sister, who initially showed she was in charge, has since become his target. No idea what happened in either case for things to switch up. But, yeah, the feeding thing, plus the quick exile to the cooler, seems to be altering his assertiveness. The Boss also read about some drops to put in his food that are supposed to curb aggressive impulses, but it's on order and hasn't yet arrived. Dammit, Luke, we will break you!
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JennyB
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Re: Pets.

Post by JennyB » 05 Feb 2019, 4:17pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 2:08pm
Weird discovery that we read and have been applying. So, Luke continues to be a bit of a bully to one of our girls. Doing some reading on conditioning cats, the order that they are fed can signal pecking order. He'd been getting his bowl placed first because his spot was closer to the feeding spot. So the last few days, we've put down their bowls first and then make him wait 20–30 seconds. And he's been a lot more calm, even cowed around them, while the bullied one is gaining confidence around him. We're wondering now if we'd been inadvertently been sending signals to them all that he was favoured. He's also knows when he's getting sent to the cooler now. If one of the girls scream at him or I sharply use his name, he heads up there on his own. The little fucker looks stupid, but he's surprisingly quick to learn.
That's so fascinating. They really are intuitive little fuckers, aren't they? Keeping my fingers crossed that this newfound calm continues.

It's nice that they aren't like hamsters or betta fish, who will fight to the kill. I know this because I am now an expert on both Syrian Hamsters and bettas.
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Re: Pets.

Post by Dr. Medulla » 05 Feb 2019, 4:38pm

JennyB wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 4:17pm
It's nice that they aren't like hamsters or betta fish, who will fight to the kill. I know this because I am now an expert on both Syrian Hamsters and bettas.
Fish are crazy. When I was in jr. high, the science room had a fish tank and we were fishing out (ha ha) bodies every few days because they'd go after each other. Fish: The Communists of the animal world.

Also, because I've never captured Luke's dumb face (he always looks normal in photos), I finally realized how he often looks up at us:
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Like, seriously. Mouth down, all pupils curving downward.
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Re: Pets.

Post by JennyB » 05 Feb 2019, 5:54pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 4:38pm
JennyB wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 4:17pm
It's nice that they aren't like hamsters or betta fish, who will fight to the kill. I know this because I am now an expert on both Syrian Hamsters and bettas.
Fish are crazy. When I was in jr. high, the science room had a fish tank and we were fishing out (ha ha) bodies every few days because they'd go after each other. Fish: The Communists of the animal world.

Also, because I've never captured Luke's dumb face (he always looks normal in photos), I finally realized how he often looks up at us:
Image

Like, seriously. Mouth down, all pupils curving downward.
Too cute. There really isn't anything much cuter than a cat with fully dilated pupils.

Our new betta tried to commit suicide on his first day home. Fish really are crazy.
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WestwayKid
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Re: Pets.

Post by WestwayKid » 06 Feb 2019, 12:31pm

We confine our cats in the kitchen/basement at night because they have a bad habit of waking up the kids (and us). It's not too bad for them - they have the run of the basement and the kitchen - plenty of space to play, sleep, eat, whatever. Anyway - our kitchen has one of those sliding wooden doors and I keep it closed at night by latching it with a hook & eye clasp. It's about 1:30 in the morning last night and I wake up and sense the presence in the room. I sit up and squint in the dark and there is our 3-year-old cat (Joe) sitting at the foot of the bed - staring at me. I get up and put him back in the kitchen and get back into bed. I was curious as to how he got out - but not curious enough that it couldn't wait until morning. I'm back in bed - trying to get back to sleep - when I hear him start working on the door. He had figured out (by dumb luck I'm sure) that if he pounded against the door with his paws that he could knock out the hook as it had become loose in the door. When the hook pooped out he could then use his claws to slide the door open enough to let himself out. Damn cat is clever! I ended up letting him stay out for the rest of the night. I figured he deserved to be rewarded for his hard work!
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Re: Pets.

Post by Dr. Medulla » 06 Feb 2019, 12:47pm

WestwayKid wrote:
06 Feb 2019, 12:31pm
We confine our cats in the kitchen/basement at night because they have a bad habit of waking up the kids (and us). It's not too bad for them - they have the run of the basement and the kitchen - plenty of space to play, sleep, eat, whatever. Anyway - our kitchen has one of those sliding wooden doors and I keep it closed at night by latching it with a hook & eye clasp. It's about 1:30 in the morning last night and I wake up and sense the presence in the room. I sit up and squint in the dark and there is our 3-year-old cat (Joe) sitting at the foot of the bed - staring at me. I get up and put him back in the kitchen and get back into bed. I was curious as to how he got out - but not curious enough that it couldn't wait until morning. I'm back in bed - trying to get back to sleep - when I hear him start working on the door. He had figured out (by dumb luck I'm sure) that if he pounded against the door with his paws that he could knock out the hook as it had become loose in the door. When the hook pooped out he could then use his claws to slide the door open enough to let himself out. Damn cat is clever! I ended up letting him stay out for the rest of the night. I figured he deserved to be rewarded for his hard work!
We have a similar problem. We can't keep our bedroom door closed because Zoë learned long ago that if she stretched and pulled on the handle, the door would open. And if we put something heavy in front so the door can't be pushed, she just keeps banging away at the handle. Thanks for learning the wrong stuff, bozo.
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Mimi
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Re: Pets.

Post by Mimi » 06 Feb 2019, 7:22pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 2:08pm
Weird discovery that we read and have been applying. So, Luke continues to be a bit of a bully to one of our girls. Doing some reading on conditioning cats, the order that they are fed can signal pecking order. He'd been getting his bowl placed first because his spot was closer to the feeding spot. So the last few days, we've put down their bowls first and then make him wait 20–30 seconds. And he's been a lot more calm, even cowed around them, while the bullied one is gaining confidence around him. We're wondering now if we'd been inadvertently been sending signals to them all that he was favoured. He's also knows when he's getting sent to the cooler now. If one of the girls scream at him or I sharply use his name, he heads up there on his own. The little fucker looks stupid, but he's surprisingly quick to learn.
I tried this with mine. In the morning, Butters gets his bowl first just because of its location to the kitchen. Licorice, second. At night, I give them a little snackeral and put her bowl down first. I used to give it to him first, but after he kept beating her up, I read about the food thing while looking for answers. The first time I did it I swear it was like night and day. Cats are weird.

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Re: Pets.

Post by Dr. Medulla » 06 Feb 2019, 8:09pm

Mimi wrote:
06 Feb 2019, 7:22pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 2:08pm
Weird discovery that we read and have been applying. So, Luke continues to be a bit of a bully to one of our girls. Doing some reading on conditioning cats, the order that they are fed can signal pecking order. He'd been getting his bowl placed first because his spot was closer to the feeding spot. So the last few days, we've put down their bowls first and then make him wait 20–30 seconds. And he's been a lot more calm, even cowed around them, while the bullied one is gaining confidence around him. We're wondering now if we'd been inadvertently been sending signals to them all that he was favoured. He's also knows when he's getting sent to the cooler now. If one of the girls scream at him or I sharply use his name, he heads up there on his own. The little fucker looks stupid, but he's surprisingly quick to learn.
I tried this with mine. In the morning, Butters gets his bowl first just because of its location to the kitchen. Licorice, second. At night, I give them a little snackeral and put her bowl down first. I used to give it to him first, but after he kept beating her up, I read about the food thing while looking for answers. The first time I did it I swear it was like night and day. Cats are weird.
Seriously. As he waits and looks at the girls eat, inside I'm thinking, "Yeah, who's the alpha now, chump?"
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Mimi
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Re: Pets.

Post by Mimi » 06 Feb 2019, 9:03pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
06 Feb 2019, 8:09pm
Mimi wrote:
06 Feb 2019, 7:22pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 2:08pm
Weird discovery that we read and have been applying. So, Luke continues to be a bit of a bully to one of our girls. Doing some reading on conditioning cats, the order that they are fed can signal pecking order. He'd been getting his bowl placed first because his spot was closer to the feeding spot. So the last few days, we've put down their bowls first and then make him wait 20–30 seconds. And he's been a lot more calm, even cowed around them, while the bullied one is gaining confidence around him. We're wondering now if we'd been inadvertently been sending signals to them all that he was favoured. He's also knows when he's getting sent to the cooler now. If one of the girls scream at him or I sharply use his name, he heads up there on his own. The little fucker looks stupid, but he's surprisingly quick to learn.
I tried this with mine. In the morning, Butters gets his bowl first just because of its location to the kitchen. Licorice, second. At night, I give them a little snackeral and put her bowl down first. I used to give it to him first, but after he kept beating her up, I read about the food thing while looking for answers. The first time I did it I swear it was like night and day. Cats are weird.
Seriously. As he waits and looks at the girls eat, inside I'm thinking, "Yeah, who's the alpha now, chump?"
Heh. As he feels himself shrinking inside.

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Re: Pets.

Post by Dr. Medulla » 23 Mar 2019, 10:28am

The girls went in for their annual check-up and vaccine boosters yesterday, plus we decided to microchip them just in case they escaped (the way Luke came into our lives made us realize what a simple step that is). And Zoë went insane. She's always been loud at the vet (whereas Charlotte goes fully passive and regretful for whatever she did to us) but she was snarly and clawing (nailed the vet in the forearm). We figure it's combined stress of having this pain-in-the-ass brother disrupting her life and now this new stress. The vet gave us medication for the next time they come to the clinic, to pacify them. Me, I went into full middle-class shame mode that my kid has acted poorly in public and that she'll have that incident on her record.
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Re: Pets.

Post by Rat Patrol » 23 Mar 2019, 1:23pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
23 Mar 2019, 10:28am
Me, I went into full middle-class shame mode that my kid has acted poorly in public and that she'll have that incident on her record.
Yeah, mine had sedation orders for "behavioral infraction" on her record for over 8 years thanks to a multi-staffer biting spree during a single visit. I was mortified. I had to plea for them to put away the needle on every mundane checkup (while she growled and howled up a storm). I was so relieved when the record finally got expunged. :twitch:

Incidentally, she bit the tech nice and hard during her euthanization 18 months ago.
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Re: Pets.

Post by BostonBeaneater » 23 Mar 2019, 1:28pm

Buddy
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