Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Pet rentals

Joanna sent me a really interesting article, which I thought I'd share here.

It's about a company called FlexPetz - a company that lets you "rent" dogs for a certain period of time. It's geared to people who don't have the time or resources to keep a pet full-time, but still want to enjoy some of the benefits of having an animal.

An excerpt:
In early 2007, Marlena Cervantes founded FlexPetz, a pet-sharing service that allows members to rent out dogs for a few hours or days at a time. Since then the small business—the first of its kind in the U.S.—has expanded rapidly from San Diego and opened branches in Los Angeles, Manhattan, and, most recently, in London. The company's website lists plans to open soon in San Francisco, Boston, Washington DC, and Paris, France.

But in recent weeks, lawmakers have begun taking steps to ban a practice critics call emotionally harmful to the animals.

It's an interesting concept. What do you think? I'm not sure. I can see some positives, especially because I'm a huge pet lover and I've been in positions where I have been unable to own one (for example, in college - I missed having cats sooo much). However, I can also see the negatives - what type of emotional affect does this have on the pet? What's the focus of the company - making money or really providing the service? Who takes care of the dogs' vet bills and makes sure they are healthy? How do you guard against possible abuse?

It seems, though, that laws are being passed to prevent FlexPetz from operating in certain cities in the U.S. (like Boston, for example). It seems this might be the end of the company:
"In response to inquiries from NEWSWEEK about the effect the legislation will have on FlexPetz growth, CEO and founder Cervantes said that as a result of the recent legislation, she has decided to "shelve" operations in the US and London, and that each pet in all FlexPetz locations will be offered to a renter for adoption."

Interesting things to ponder. Thanks, Joanna!

A dog for a day? Lawmakers take action against "pet rental" companies

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Sunday, July 20, 2008

Slightly concerned

So either Lewis or Ebony or both have gotten into a bad habit of using the carpet as their litter box. It's gotten especially bad as the humidity has gotten worse. We have two litter boxes which we try to keep clean and yet they still seem to prefer the bathroom carpet. (Side note: Who puts carpet in the bathroom??? Bad idea!)

So I'm not sure what to do. At first I thought they were mad at us for going on vacation, like when we're gone for the weekend camping or chilling in some Outer Banks rentals, but now they seem to be doing it even when we're home. I wonder if they are getting less attention somehow? I used to be home a lot more before I started a new job 6 months ago. They do seem to walk around the house crying for no reason.

I'm slightly concerned, and my mom suggested I talk to the vet. I realized they are due for their annual vaccines anyways so I should take them in anyways. I hope they're okay. :-/

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

New Simon's Cat video

Here is a new video in the series:

I love this series. It seems that the author has spent time with Lewis. :-)

You can see the other two videos here:
Simon's Cat "Cat Man Do"
Simon's Cat "Let Me In!"

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Here Kitty Kitty

I'm the kind of person who enjoy creative craft-y projects. I also love sending cards out to people - birthdays, weddings, holidays, etc. Recently a friend of mine turned me onto stamps - a great tool for making cards, tags, decorating paper bags, etc. (Surprisingly, I'm not really into scrapbooking.) I received my set of stamps today, and one of the sets I got are some cat stamps:

Aren't they adorable? I tried to get stamps that would have a variety of uses, but the cat stamps are rather specific. There's only so many times you can send cards that say "happy birthday from the cat". :-) Oh well. They're so me. Any ideas of what I can use them for?

I love cat stuff. When I get my sewing machine, I'd like to start making cat-themed things for fun, and perhaps selling them on etsy or something. Maybe I can incorporate the cat stamps with that? Or I could just make and sell notecards? Ah the possibilities!

Now, I only need to find some beagle stamps... ;-)

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Couch potatoes

When my cats and I first moved to Atlanta, we settled in a nice little apartment. First I had the couch at a right angle to the large front window, and I put a small table in front of the window so Lewis and Ebony could sit there and watch the goings on outside.

A few months later I rearranged the apartment and put the couch in front of the window. That ended up being a mistake, because the kitties have a mind like a computer memory and learned something they have since never forgotten: the back of the couch is an awesome place to sleep. They never used to get up there before but once it became the Prime Spot for Window Watching, they soon settled themselves in and wouldn't move. About a year later, the apartment was rearranged again, and the couch came away from in front of the window. Since then, it has never been in front of the window, but alas - it was too late. Their favorite spot to sleep has since been on the back of the couch. It's great - they can see everything that's going on, be closer to our eye levels (especially when we're sitting), and it's comfortable to boot.

A few months ago we finally saved enough money to buy a new couch and loveseat. My thoughts were that with this new couch, which had a different type of back cushion, the cats would find a new place to rest.

Who was I kidding? Once they got over their fear of the new couches (really, why were they so scared of them?) they happily settled onto the back. And now they have pushed the cushion down enough that it's more comfortable and less attractive for us. Sigh.

I need to find something that will keep them off the back of the couch. I'm thinking that perhaps some tub mats with the suction cup side facing up would be good. I've also heard that most cats will avoid tinfoil. Or perhaps I should just not worry about it, because let's face it - cats will go wherever they please, isn't that true? We'll see.

Keeping an eye on the outside

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Sea turtles

So this past weekend, we headed to Hilton Head Island for a relative's wedding and to relax on the beach for a few days. We arrived to the condo after midnight, and since we were still wound up from driving, we took a nice walk on the beach before we hit the sack.

The first thing I noticed about the beach was how incredibly dark it was. There was no moon, and I could hardly see my hand in front of me. I thought it was odd until I asked about it the next day. Because of the sea turtles, Hilton Head has required there to be no light shining on the beach from the land between May 1st and October 31st. So all the waterfront hotels had to put up thick curtains or barriers in order to block the light at night. The reason they do this is to protect the sea turtles. The lights from the shore confuses the mama turtles as well as the baby turtles after they hatch, and they head towards the land instead of heading into the ocean. Since sea turtles are endangered, Hilton Head is trying to do everything to help the turtles get back to the sea as nature intended. I thought that was interesting.

A few days ago, I came across this video on CNN's iReport of newly-hatched baby sea turtles heading for the ocean. It made me smile and gave me all sorts of warm fuzzy feelings:

I wish I could witness some baby sea turtles myself! I enjoyed our stay at Hilton Head. These are the kinds of things you don't find when you do Las Vegas traveling. :-)

Now a word from Ebony

EbonyI didn't want Lewis to be the only voice on this blog so I thought I'd take a stab. I'm curled up right now in my human's lap, making sure what is being typed matches my dictation. I have to tell you a secret. A few weeks ago, I was finally able to get out of my collar! Finally, freedom! I know my human tells me that the identification tag on my collar will help me get home if I get lost, but I'm not worried. I'm very good when it comes to direction and I'm sure I'd be able to find my way back. The best part is that I managed to hide it in a place where my humans haven't discovered it yet! They are still stumped about its location. I saw them checking under the bed the other night, and I just sat there with a knowing smile on my face. If all goes as planned, my neck shall remain free forever.

In the meantime, I spot some squirrels through the window and I must go investigate. Catch ya later, chicas!

—posted by your guest transcriber,wine refrigerator

Friday, July 11, 2008

Now a word from Lewis...

DSC_3047Good evening all my fellow readers. It is I, Lewis, well kind human is transcribing for me this evening as I dictate from the top of couch. Tonight I want to talk about what moves you. What is your motivation in life? Could it be the little piece of string dangling annoyingly in your face? the intoxicating aroma of that wonder drug catnip? Or is it the same motivation as me: food. Yummy, delicious, food brought down from the sky and plopped on my plate at about the same time twice a day. Some people say you have to go out and get what you want...I say you have to annoy the ones who have the power until they give in. My favorite strategy is to lay right next to my human's head flicking my tail right in front of their noise. Well must go for now I think it might be time to eat again.

—posted by your guest transcriber, acne treatment

PetZoom...does it work?

Saw this on an "As seen on TV" commercial the other day. This is a grooming brush that is suppose to be as good as a professional groomer. The intriguing aspect of this product—besides the fact that it seems that any time it is used on an animal it induces euphoria or coma state—is that you are able to to quickly and easily dump the hair you groom. As I watched (and held back the urge to quickly run to the phone) I was wondering does this really work? So any one out there use PetZoom or something similar? Is it a buy or bust?

—posted by your guest, cheap life insurance

Firefox adopted by house cat...

No folks I still have not found the first cat to use the browser Firefox (but I am still working on that). This is much, much cuter:

"A house cat nursing kittens adopts a baby red panda abandoned by its mother at the Artis Zoo in Amsterdam, Netherlands." --

Still don't believe it? Then head over to and check out the video.
—posted by your guest, furniture stores

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

1,000 words

This made my heart melt.

more cat pictures

Thursday, July 3, 2008

One more post!

We're headed on vacation tomorrow, to the beach. No, we won't be taking any animals with us. :-) The kitties will stay home and hold down the fort. A friend will be coming by every day to feed and snuggle with them.

This is the fourth time we've left them so far this summer, and I don't think they are big fans of it. We keep coming home to find, er, presents that we'd really rather not find. They seem to think that the carpet in front of the sink in the bathroom is an excellent choice that far exceeds the litter box. Sigh. Who carpets a bathroom, anyways???

Last time we almost ran out of cat food and didn't get a chance to buy more, so today I ran to Petsmart to make sure to have lots of extra. I was glad the kind I buy was on sale. So we should be all set. I just need to make sure to leave extra water - I forgot about that last time too.

For cat-sitting, we've worked out a good deal with a fellow cat-loving friend of mine. She has two cats and so we take care of each other's cats whenever we need it. That way, I don't have to worry about paying for a cat sitter, and neither does she. I used to make up a whole sheet of detailed info about how to feed my cats and vet info, but my friend is so used to it now that she doesn't need it. It's always good to provide a pet sitter with that kind of information, though.

Well I am off to bed and on to fun and adventure tomorrow! It should be tons of fun. I hope everyone has a great 4th of July!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


I have two more posts to write tonight! And then when I get back, I have to write 5 posts by Wednesday. :-/ I'm getting a little burnt out here so bear with me. I may have to resort to posting more cat poems. :-)

Yesterday I read a hilarious story in the news:
Woman Held Cat For Ransom After Losing Dog

So what do you do if Animal Control picks up your dog and lets someone else adopt it? Well, you kidnap that family's cat of course! (Wasn't that obvious?) An excerpt:

The dog was picked up by Animal Care and Control and held for five days before being adopted by Jutta Hollar and her husband.

Hollar told WPBF News 25 that they had the pup -- now named "Buddy" -- about two weeks when they received word that Urioste had stopped by Animal Care and Control looking for him.

Hollar said that she and her husband were considering returning the dog until they met with Urioste to discuss the situation.

"But she was very rude and yelled at us and treated us really not very nice," Hollar told WPBF.

She said that they decided that Buddy was staying put when Urioste threatened to sue them.

A few days after the confrontation, Hollar realized that the family's cat, Mitz, was gone from her usual outside spot. Hollar began to wonder where the cat could have gone when she received a phone call from Urioste.

"I was the used-to-be-owner, but I was wondering if you were missing a gray pussy cat. Because a pussy cat ran out in front of my car not far from your house and I saved its life. I almost ran him over. So, I was just wondering how you are enjoying Scooby, because I am enjoying your pussy cat while he is in his crate. You call it crate, I call it a cage. Have a nice day," Urioste is heard saying on a answering machine tape.

Greenacres police said that Urioste admitted to them that she had the cat and refused to give it back unless the Hollars gave her dog back.

My favorite part is "You call it crate, I call it a cage. Have a nice day." Heheh It takes all kinds, doesn't it?!

Halloween invitations

Dear Jera, part 2

Dear Jera,

Well it's been just about a year since we last saw you. I can't believe it's been that long. I still think about you and miss you so much!

We've been camping three times already this summer, Jera. We missed you especially on those trips. To me, you and camping just went together! You would have loved it though. We have been hiking each time, and we have seen some pretty spectacular sights. I can imagine you now, wagging your tail and grinning at the thought of another hike.

We also discovered about 5 miles of trail nearby, and we try to go every weekend. We wish you were able to be with us when we do that! Even though it's close to the city, it's along a peaceful river and under good tree cover so it's nice and cool. I see other puppies along with their owners, and wish you were there too.

I want you to know we haven't forgotten you. I wish you were still with us right now! I don't ever expect to know what happened to you or to ever see you again, but if it happens I will be thrilled. I hope wherever you are, that you are flourishing and being loved and taken care of. That's what you deserve, sweet Jera.

Your mommy,

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