Aug 292017

As hurricane Harvey whallops Texas and flood Houston to a truly remarkable degree, comparisons to hurricane Katrina are inevitable. There have been some deaths due to Harvey, but nothing – at least so far – comparable to the more than a thousand dead in Katrina. Plus, the Cajun Navy is there in force rescuing people… but I notice a lack of reporting about all the folks being rescued by the Antifa Navy. Maybe their efforts are being held in reserve…

Another difference: in Katrina, hundreds of thousands of pets were simply abandoned. Many died, many were re-homed. At the time I was puzzled… I can understand the panic that comes with having to pack up and split in a hurry, but leaving pets behind? OK, pets like fish and lizards I get, but abandoning cats and dogs? Nope. Just… nope. These creatures are, as I’ve said before, On Our Team. You don’t leave team members behind. A lot of it, I suppose, was due to rescue services not letting people take their pets, a situation that has fortunately changed: as I type this, a bit on CNN shows a fire department boat going door to door in a suburb (there’s a phrase you don’t read too often) collecting families… and their pets. A police officer was shown helping a family find their freaked-out cat, another family loaded their dog onto the boat. Good on all y’all.

The coverage certainly seems to suggest that Texans are doing a  better job of taking their pets with them when they leave.

Harvey and Pet Owners


List of animal shelters and rescues in the path of Hurricane Harvey

Plus: it’s interesting to see humans coming to the aid of *non* pet animals. A popular story ove the last few days has been that of a Coopers Hawk that took shelter from the coming storm in a taxi:

What’s spiffy is that the taxi driver took the hawk in and provided aid and comfort to this wild animal. See the updates on the guys YouTube channel. The hawk turned out to be injured in some way that prevented flight; after a few days it was transferred to the care of a wildlife center.




Where I live the chances of a flood are pretty slim. More likely are things like fire and earthquake and ashfall from supervolcanos. But I would *like* to think that if the time came to bail I’d take the time and effort to gather up the cats. Fortunately I’ve not had to put that to the test, but I’m reasonably sure that any disaster that gives me more than a few minutes warning is going to see me stuffing cats into crates.

 Posted by at 7:03 pm
Aug 162017

Yeah, this video is quite a number of years old, but it’s still a hoot. I’m pleased that the attempt at the end by the human to sow additional discord backfires.

 Posted by at 12:38 am
Aug 112017

Tonight while out at the far end of a walk several cats came out and were friendly. One is a pretty tiny mommacat with her kittens; but just a few days ago she had herself a great big belly, so I imagine there’s another set of smaller kittens out there somewhere.

 Posted by at 10:08 pm
Aug 102017

Junior was, as far as cats go, kind of an asshole. He hissed at me every time he saw me. He wouldn’t let me near him. If I tried to touch him, he’d try to swat me, claws out. He was terribly ungrateful even when I cracked open a cat of wet food for him.

Still, he was a cat.

Like the cat in February, he was hit by a car. Like that cat, I sat with him as he died. Unlike that cat, it was mercifully brief. And then I buried him in my back yard as he thunder started rolling in.

He was not *my* cat, he lived free in the world. But he is why *my* cats will, so long as I have anything to say about it, live safely indoors, for a long, long time.

Junior was the last of the outside cats around here. There was a time when my house was the center of attention for a *lot* of cats, always litters of kittens showing up. But now those days are done, and the world is a little less for it.

 Posted by at 8:02 pm
Jul 192017

Through the use of cats, humor and profanity, exurb1a explains the limitations that our brains put on understanding the universe… and how those limits might grow. There’s a good line about how our descendants might grow in capacity and learn things we alive now would be wholly incapable of understanding… “they couldn’t have gotten there without us, but they’ll get there without us.”

 Posted by at 11:16 pm
Jul 182017


Raedthinn chillin’ in one of his favorite spots, backed up by Fingers.

Fingers gazes with disdain down upon her subjects.

Buttons looks with dismay upon the unwelcome scene of the vet clinic

Speedbump looks up in befuddlement at, well, everything. He’s not that smart.

 Posted by at 1:27 pm
Jul 012017

A USAF film from the early 60’s showing some of the things the Air Force was doing to prepare for spaceflight. Parachute tests, ejection seats, various acceleration tests are shown. At about 3:30 several cats are shown in an aircraft doing zero-g maneuvers. The cats are obviously not happy about this. In general, taking cats along on a zero-g flight is something I’m not opposed to… humans living in space are undoubtedly going to take pets with them, and it’d be good to figure out what species can handle what. But the cats obviously are confused, having no idea whatsoever what’s going on… and the humans are having too much fun screwing with them.

 Posted by at 4:06 pm
Jun 192017

If you are a female cat, there’s no more desirable place to be than right next to or – if you’re ambitious – right on top of a big, fluffy male cat like Raedthinn. This, however, is a situation that Raedthinn rarely approves of, preferring to keep to himself.

 Posted by at 11:49 am
Jun 022017

The essence of maturity is not only knowing when to deny yourself, it’s doing so.

As an example, may I present this video of a caracal kitten making the oddest, cutest noise to attract its humans attention in order to feed it:

Now, what sort of inhuman monster looks at that and says to themselves, “naw, I have no interest in that beast.” But here’s the thing: caracal kittens grow up. And when they do and it’s time for foodening, you get this:

And you can see that this animal is *not* what you’d call exactly domesticated. There are several noises contained here that should be enough to convince a wise person that this is not a pet to keep. Not least of which is the sound of bones being *crushed.*

 Posted by at 8:29 pm