Pride of Accomplishment

First things first – to answer Carisa’s question in the previous post:“Isn’t shedding season supposed to be at the end of spring, to lighten the coat up for summer weather?”

Answer: House cats shed a little bit year round, but they have 2 heavy shedding seasons, around the equinoxes. The shedding is triggered by the length of the day, not temperature as one might expect – otherwise, indoor cats wouldn’t ever shed, since their environment is climate controlled. In the spring, cats shed the warm undercoat and replace it with a lighter one. In the fall, cats shed the thin undercoat and replace it with a thicker one. Some believe that artificial lighting may trigger house cats to shed year round, but sunlight is different from artificial light (otherwise, why don’t you get a sunburn from a lightbulb? or why do people who spend all day in artificial lighting and not the sun end up with vitmain-D deficiencies?) and I am not totally convinced that this has a significant effect (but I can buy that it has a minor effect). If your cat is shedding heavily year round, then he or she probably has a medical problem that should be looked at in a vet’s office.

Aside from brushing cats, I have accomplished a lot in the last few days. A lot of things I wasn’t really sure were possible, for that matter. What is the world coming to?

I finished the baby dress a full day (more than 24 hours even) before the baby shower. Maybe it’s vain, but I really do like it when people take an interest in my work, asking questions that show that they aren’t just trying to be polite. I like it even more when someone brags that he, too, has a piece of my knitted work. It’s one of those rare times that I feel really good about myself, like I actually do something that others value. Both of these things happened at the baby shower yesterday, a good day for my self-esteem.

The dress, like many of my other projects, did not go perfectly. I didn’t really get one of the instructions in the pattern, and I ended up doing a 3-needle bind off with the seam on the outside. For the record, I didn’t know that wasn’t part of the design until I saw more instructions later. The pattern said “with right side facing,” which generally means right side facing the knitter. For the second sleeve, it said “with right SIDES facing” which means you should do what it tells you with the garment inside out. One letter screwed me up. By the time I got to the point where the correct statement was made, it was not worth fixing.

Endora has finally started gaining weight again. I tried feeding her anything she would eat. I gave her fluids twice a day. I even bought some Nutri-cal to make her gain weight. Nothing was working – the poor kitten just kept getting smaller. Finally, on Saturday evening, she gained 7g. On Sunday evening, she gained another 14g. When we pick her up, Endora no longer feels limp and vaguely like pudding. I am giving her a cocktail of Panacur and Amoxil right now, and I think that finally did the trick. I am giving it to all 4 kittens right now to prevent the spread of whatever that disease was and to clear up all their diarrhea.

Somehow, I also managed to stop the diarrhea that my 3 new bottle-feeders had when I got them. They are only on Amoxil, but they got better overnight – literally. They had nasty diarrhea all day on Saturday, but when they woke up Sunday morning , it was gone. I wish it were always that easy. Now that they aren’t covered in poop, I should get pictures of each of them individually. I’ll give more details about them tomorrow.

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