Monday, December 31, 2007

What the heck can I eat?!

So, Ketut asked what I eat. I started to reply to her very kind words to the last post. It seemed more appropriate here, because I'll have more room to, well, spread out.

Way back in 2005, I fell head over tail for a weight management food, which is high carb, as we know now. Maybe it's because I was depressed (my brother and I had just been abandoned). Maybe it's because we had to live with new cats (four of them!!!). Maybe it's because it was so darned tasty. Whatever the reason, I was hooked. It's sad, now that I think about it. I got up in the morning, ready at the bowl. The girls filled it, never knowing they were feeding the monkey that climbed on my back.

Fast forward to 2007. In two years, I gained more than 10 pounds! They tried moving the bowl up higher, I just learned to climb up onto the table.

But you know all of this (or you'll scroll back to the beginning of this blog and catch up).

Now I'm on "kitty atkins." I eat roughly three ounces of high-fat, high-protein moist food originally developed for diabetic cats. We all eat moist food three times a day. In the morning, Jess mixes in about a 1/4 tsp of fiber with my food because I'm a little, erm, bound up. Everyone else gets all-day access to a high-protein kibble called Innova Evo. At night, Marlene will give me a 1/4 cup of the kibble in my own little bowl. The monkey isn't happy. The monkey wants a bigger bowl.

Sometimes I'll stand next to my small bowl and stare up to the counter where I know, I just know, the big bowl of kibble is sitting. I look at Jess, then at the empty bowl, then back at the counter. If that doesn't work, I'll put my paw in the empty bowl. "Please, sir, can I have some more?" I'm not proud of it, but it works. One of them will cave and give me a little handful. (Jess says it's a "happy handful." I'm not sure what she means, but it makes me happy.)

That's what I eat. Or what they give me to eat. If I had thumbs...

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Someone call Kirstie Alley!!!

Faithful fans, friends, family, just call me Fatboy Slim!

Jess and Marlene hauled me down to the vet and got me on the scale. Jess thought I'd be happier if she carried me rather than put me in the carrier. I think she was mistaken, but that's neither here nor there. I think she just wanted to show off her yoga muscles. She put me in that damned harness which kept me from bolting up the stairs (yes, even one of my girth can bolt when properly motivated. See the dog incident from a few months ago).

Sorry, I know you're waiting for the magic number but I have to lead up to these things.

So she carries me out the car, while Marlene carries Doonesbury in a carrier. He's also due for a weigh-in, but he's trying to put weight on. He's 16, hyperthyroid, and has a dodgy tummy or something. They've been squirting steroids down his throat for a month. Jess carries me down the block, trailing "yes it's a cat, a big fat cat" comments in her wake, and into the vet's waiting room. Thank Bast there were no dogs waiting there! They brought me back to the scale and plunked me down and...'s killing you, isn't it!

29.7 pounds!!!

::the crowd goes wild::

Thank you! Thank you!

I have so far to go, but I'm really proud of my progress. My belly measured 28 inches this morning. I can't remember what it was before, but I hope it's smaller. They tested my pee again and I'm still healthy. The vet says I can only have 1/8 cup of kibble from now on and she wants me to get on a treadmill. I kid you not. Marlene says she'll walk with me. Jess says "good luck with that!"

Thank you, again, for your love and support!


ps: Doonesbury gained almost 2 pounds in a month!

Sunday, October 28, 2007


Mosby, a grey and white cat, sitting on the floor tiles.
Oh, so much to tell you people. The girls keep adding new things to my world. I sleep through most of it. So long as they don't change my food, I'll survive.

They changed the kitchen. They put down a new floor (something called Marmoleum). I helped out where I could, of course, holding the tools and telling where the white tiles should go. It really came out quite lovely. Jess says their friend Tim did all the work, but I get credit for providing the screwdriver.Mosby holds the screwdriver He also suggested the paint color and helped paint the walls. Truth to tell: If Tim hadn't helped, those boxes would still be sitting in the corner of the kitchen, blocking my view of the food.

The girls also brought home a new housemate. Meet Beyonce, the Rat. Beyonce was purchased by National Geographic for a documentary about cobras. Black and white ratShe was supposed to be a cobra's dinner, but he never took her up on it (not even after 2 days in the cage!). Maybe he's kosher. Whatever the reason, I have suppressed my instinctive desire to squash the little thing. It's not easy. She's pushy! She insists on climbing on me and grooming my tail. What is the world coming to, people? What's that line from Thornton Wilder? "The whole world is a sixes and sevens!"

Just about everything else is changing but me. I don't think I've lost any weight, but then I'm afraid to look. Now that it's cooled off, Jess says we're going for walks again. yipee freakin' skipee.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

I want to talk about declawing

I'm declawed. My brother and I were declawed at a pretty early age. I really can't remember what it was like to have claws. I'm sure they were handy, though (if you'll forgive the pun).

I'm grateful that I don't remember it. I don't mind if people touch my paws. I don't really have any residual pain from them. But they look awful! Do you know what they do when they declaw a cat? A lot of people think it's like removing a fingernail or something, but it's much more involved. It's really an amputation.

Gruesome details follow, scroll past if you're squeamish.

First they knocked my ass out. Damned good thing, too. Then they sliced open the pad of each digit and removed the first knuckle on each one. See, our nails are actually attached to the last bone in our paws. In order to remove the claws, you have to remove the whole bone! Gruesome, no? Thank Bast for short memories.

Then they sew us back up, wrap our paws, and let us sleep off the drugs. Here's where I'm really grateful for the short memory, because the recovery is really, really painful. For weeks it hurt just to put my paws down. Litterbox? Oh, forget it! We had to pee in shredded newspaper. I still refuse to bury my deposits. Is it because I remember how much it hurt back then? Who knows.

We learned to walk again, but it hasn't been the same. I don't walk the way I used to. Cats walk on their claws. Didn't know that, did you? I can't stretch the way I used to, either. You know, that full-body stretch? Man, I miss those (I think).

Anyway, I'm ok, for now. There's a chance I could develop arthritis and back problems. There's always a chance my litterbox habits could be more deeply affected (Jess and Marlene have promised that nothing will happen to me if I pee outside the box).

If you have cats and are thinking about having their toes removed, I beg you to consider otherwise. They'll regret it a lot more than you.

ps: There's another procedure called a tendonectomy. It's even worse. I shudder to think about it!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Red Door My Feline Fanny!

Today my family thought it would be fun to take me to the spa. I can tell you, I was more than ready for a massage after all of the working out I had been doing. A nice, gentle rub down, maybe work out the kinks in my quads and delts. Perhaps a light meal and a Tuna Smoothie in the cafĂ©. Jess and Marlene’s idea of “spa” seems to be more torture than “happy ending”.

It all started with us not even leaving the house (while I am not fond of traveling in the box, I rather thought we would be going to the masseuse). So I figured they must have hired someone that does house calls - how simply lovely that I would not have to go anywhere!

But then Jess picked me up and brought me into the bathroom. Then she put me into the gigantic white box with glass doors and got in with me. I had no idea what she was up to.

Imagine my horror when she turned on the shower and aimed the horrible wet stuff at me! I’ve checked the tags, people: Cats are Dry Clean Only! I tried to get as far away from it as I could, but I was trapped in the space.

Before I knew it she was using the long, windy tube to douse me with the foul stuff, then she poured baby shampoo (I kid you not) and really rubbed it in (one should always ask permission before one starts rubbing a guy all over like that!). She even scrubbed my, ahem, you know.

It seemed to go on forever. I can tell you I had a lot to say about this shabby treatment - she is no Sven!

Finally I was released from this torture chamber and allowed to run away. My brother tried to help me get the foul stuff off me (very kind of him as I cannot reach everywhere) but it took hours before I felt myself once more. Luckily this shame was only shared by family!

In the end, I do admit it was nice to feel so clean (though I will never admit that to my people). I just hope I don’t have to do it again any time soon!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

I did promise, didn't I

Jess held me to my promise. On a cool June evening, she trussed me up and took my picture. I am not happy about this, people. Look at me. And the lead is pink, fercryinoutloud!

I'm a cat, and a declawed one at that. What makes her think I want to "explore" the alley. That's what she keeps saying: "C'mon, Mosby, don't you want to explore?" No, I want to sit on my fat ass and watch Oprah.

So she picked me up and carried me out into the alley. As soon as she put me down, I bolted back in. As far in as that hell-pink tether would let me.

Jess seems to think that if she can get my brother Stoney to go, I'll be more confident or something. You know what, Stoney's a great guy, but he's the active, outdoorsey type. You know, the guy who's always inviting you to go kayaking or rock climbing or antiquing (if he could a) drive, b) talk, and c) go out without human supervision). He's all about this "going for a walk" thing. He even likes the alley cats.

Well, once Jess carried me out for the second time, I took the opportunity to eat some grass, walk about 15 feet, and pee in a wildly inappropriate place. Stoney chatted up the black cat for a while, rolled in the gravel, then took in the sun. I was more than ready to go in after about 15 minutes, so I headed back to the gate.

I will give Jess credit for trying. Each trip out like this lasts a little longer. I did check out more of the grassy area by the Reverend's car, so I guess I accomplished something.

I'll also give Jess that she takes the harness off before she lets me back in the house. I just don't think I could take the other cats seeing me like this.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Is it really walking if you have to carry me?

Jess got me a harness. She delights in pointing out that it's a medium sized dog harness. I really don't like it. It goes around my neck, across my chest and back, and under my arms. It's mildly humiliating. I feel slightly better when my brother Stoney wears his. Somehow, he manages to walk out of one side and get his front legs tangled. Jess has to stop him and redirect his paws, each time saying "I just don't get how you manage to do this!" Cracks me up.

Jess took us out yesterday. She straps us in, then opens the back gate. The Alley Cats take this as an invitation to walk it, eat my catnip, and mark everything they can get their faces on. I was determined to defend my turf, so I plunked my fat butt down and refused to move. Jess is much bigger than me, though. She picked me up and carried me out into the alley. All 30 pounds of me. So demoralizing. At least it's the alley. Only the Alley Cats and Stoney can see me.

Then there was the dog. I was fine with the cats and the grass and the interesting smells, but I draw the line at canines! The neighbor dog started barking and running and I literally ran out of my harness! I have never been so frightened! I've also never moved so fast. Exercise is all well and good, but a guy could have a heart attack!

I really should put some pictures of me up here. You probably want to see me in the harness. I'll see what I can do.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

A little play goes a long way

I've rediscovered playing.

It sounds simple, silly even. I'm an inactive guy. I love lying around, snuggling, sleeping, etc.
That's part of why I've gotten so big. You only burn so many calories while sleeping. Yes, cats sleep up to 18 hours a day. But when you spend the next 6 hours eating, there's not a whole lot of opportunity for exercise.

That's changing. I like play. I have to remind the girls that I want to play. Usually it's late at night and I know they're getting ready for bed, but that's when I get my second wind! Jess gets the laser pointer out and I chase it for about 10 or 15 seconds. That gets my heart rate up. Then we play with ribbons, strings, feathers, her hair, whatever dangles, for a good 5 to 10 minutes. I'm usually on my back, feet up, belly spread. It's not pretty, but no one look attractive when they're really working out. (Jess has threatened to take pictures of this. I've hidden the camera in the hopes she'll forget.)

Every little bit helps.

Monday, May 28, 2007

mmmmm carbs, oooohhhhhhhh

When I first moved into my new house, I was introduced to something called "weight management" food. I gathered that one of my new roommates had packed on the pounds in his earlier years, so now everyone was eating this stuff.

This is quality food, don't worry. They use good ingredients, for the most part. But they also use corn, wheat, soy, and rice. Have you ever seen a cat eat corn? Ever wondered if he should make the switch to whole grain? Would you offer a cat tofu?

Let's be honest, here. I have sharp little teeth designed to rend flesh from bone. Open a cow's mouth or, heck, open your own. See those big, flat molars? Those are designed for grinding grain. Now look in my mouth (ok, that's not my mouth). Pointy, vicious little renders!

I need meat. Meat, meat, meat. And sometimes grass. But mostly meat. And bone. And fat. I don't need chips, bread, or pasta.

But I do love them so. That's my problem. I love carbs. Jess has this big tub of food she gives to the stray cats outside. It looks like kids cereal! Everytime she opens it, I can smell all the corn. I stare at the tub, hoping a nugget or two will bounce to the floor. Oh, sweet temptation!

Everyone in the house now eats a high protein dry food that contains no grain at all. It's good and crunchy, but not nearly as satisfying. I like it and I ask for it as much as possible (I don't always get it, but I ask).

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Fat. Healthy, but Fat

I'm huffing my way up the stairs to the litterbox. I have to stop half way and rest. Then I have to stop at the top of the stair and rest. Then I have to rest at the litterbox. This is a dream? Right?

Nope. I thought there had to be something wrong with me (besides my prodigious belly) so I had them take me to the Vet. I admit it, I hate getting in the carrier. It scares the shit out of me. I'm sure I'll never get out or, when I do, I won't know where I am and they'll leave me again. I know, I know. I'm safe and the girls have promised never to leave me. I still squawk in the carrier.

Jess complained the whole time about carrying me in the carrier. "Geez, Mosby! I hope I can make it to the car!" ha ha. I'm not self-conscious enough yet.

The trip was mercifully short but as soon as the carrier was open, I was in a weird place with people poking me. Without so much as dinner first! Everyone kept popping in to stare at me. Truthfully, I was so freaked out about being at the Vet, that the attention was the least of it. It bothered Marlene a lot, though.

The Vet prodded, massaged, felt, and listened. She drew blood (three tries, thank you. I've got three bald spots now!). I tried to maintain some dignity in all of this: I refused to give them a urine sample. Ha! Of course, two days later I found Jess holding a little dustpan under my ass while I peed in the box. At least I made her work for it.

But guess what kids: I'm fine. My thyroid levels aren't low. My red and white cells are fine. There was no sugar in my urine. I'm fat. But I'm not sick.

Now I'm on Atkins. I kid you not.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Hi, my name is Mosby, and I'm a carb addict.

My name is Mosby. I'm 8 years old and I've always been a big guy. Even when I was young and fit I was tall and hefty. I didn't have to work at it, I just played with my brother and did the stuff you do when you're young. And I ate whatever they put in front of me!

I was comfortable and happy in my home, even when they had me and my brother declawed (I'll get to that in another post). Then, seven years into what I thought was a great relationship, my world turned upside down.

My people, the ones who raised us and loved us, abandoned us. We found ourselves homeless and living in rescue (better than the shelter, yes, but still not home). By then, I was up to 18 pounds. I was hefty, but I could still play and get around easily. But this, this upheaval, left me shattered. Like many of you, I turned to food.

Food made me happy. Food made me feel better. Food didn't go away. So I ate.

We went into a foster home with loving people and interesting roommates. There was always food there, too. This time it was "weight management" food. Great! I thought. It's light! I can eat as much as I want! So I ate. A lot.

Before my foster family knew it, I'd packed on nine pounds! They moved the wonderful food so I had to climb to get it. I climbed. I ate. I ate a lot more.

The nice foster people adopted me and my brother after a year. They're wonderful, kind, gentle, and really care about us. They're very worried about me. I don't move around well. I breathe heavy. I'm constipated. They tried other foods, but what I really want is kibble. They're nice, they give me a few pieces with every bowl of moist food. But my wonderful food, my constant companion, is out of reach.

I'm on a diet, kids. I'm not happy about it. But I really have no say. We went to the doctor, ran all kinds of tests. More on that in the next post.