Furry Bambino Foster Academy

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With great sadness, we report that our beautiful little tortie girl Samoa went to the Rainbow Bridge on Monday, October 24, after a brief but severe bout of pneumonia. We are still in shock as it seems just yesterday she was bounding up and down the stairs. We greatly appreciate the purrs and purrayers from family and friends.

Samoa came into our life in April of 2015.  She was rescued by a dear friend from Slavic Village, along with her four kittens, whom we named Ginger Snap, Peanut Butter, S’mores, and Thin Mint.  S’mores is the only girl and her tortie markings look just like her Mom Samoa!  Ginger Snap is an orange tabby, Peanut Butter is white with orange tabby markings, and Thin Mint is solid black. This first photo is from our first meeting with Samoa and her 2-day old kittens. The second photo is just a week later, and her kittens have grown so much that they look like they are smothering her tiny 7-pound body.

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In addition to her own litter of four kittens, Samoa cared for four “Cowboy Kittens” (Cassidy, Clementine, Harlee, and Sadie) for a few days until their Mama Mae West was rescued, and could resume her motherly duties. Mae West was particularly elusive, and now resides with a dear friend.

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No sooner than Mae West began nursing her four Cowgirls, than a 2-day-old kitten abandoned by his mother was found in the Waterloo neighborhood. We named this kitten, Snickerdoodle, and he was readily welcomed by Samoa into her little family. Snickerdoodle is mostly white with orange tabby markings, and closely resembles Peanut Butter, so he really looked like part of the family!

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Finally came the “Charlie Angels” kittens.  Although Jaclyn Fluff, Farrah Fluff Major, and Kate Fluffson did not resemble Samoa or her own babies, they were also lovingly accepted by Samoa and treated as her own. The three black and white tuxedo kittens were rescued from the home of dear friends who have their own little feral family in their garden. By rescuing the tuxie girls, the hope was to give them safe and loving indoor homes, so they were rescued as young kittens close to weaning so they would be easier to socialize.

Samoa was a good Mom (and surrogate Mom) to a total of 12 kittens … patient with her kittens’ antics, and training her babies how to be Good Cats.

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While confined to the “back kitten room” (back bedroom), Samoa gradually became comfortable with Sue and would allow Sue to pet her on rare occasions. Samoa would rub against Sue’s legs and was pleased to accept treats. However, Samoa was still easily startled and would hiss loudly when Sue or David moved too quickly or without advance notice.

The orange marking over her left eye made Samoa appear as if she was always raising her left eyebrow at us, as if to ask “What now?”

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Over time, after Samoa raised her babies and they started to get adopted, we let her into Gen Pop (gave her full run of the house) with The Furry Bambinos.  Samoa was still a foster with us, and would hide when we needed to take her to adoption events.  Finally, David stated the obvious as we rode to the third consecutive adoption event without Samoa because we could not catch her.  “We may have just adopted our eighth Bambino.”  Shortly thereafter, we discussed it over dinner and concluded that she was happy here with us.  “Let’s just adopt her.”  And that’s how Samoa officially became a Furry Bambino, in early 2016.

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Samoa (aka “Shmo”) fit in with The Furry Bambinos very easily.  She seemed content to be the low girl on the totem pole of the cat hierarchy.  She stood in the background and didn’t seem to care if she was the last one to be fed treats.  She never started fights, and always used the litter boxes.   She regularly helped the other Bambinos on “Bird Patrol” and “Squirrel Patrol” from her favorite position in one of the “tubes” of the cat furniture.

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She also liked to explore.  A few times a week we could guarantee hearing a loud “thump” coming from the basement.  It was usually Samoa landing on the washing machine after jumping down from exploring the crawl space under the family room. She would emerge with her whiskers covered in cobwebs, then dash off upstairs.

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For a long time, she would only eat breakfast by poking her head out from the chair covers in the dining room.

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But over time, Samoa became more comfortable and would eat out in the open.  During our morning feeding routines, she began to occasionally brush up against David’s legs, and he got so he could stroke Samoa across her head and back after giving her a food dish.

The rest of the time, Samoa usually kept her distance from us.  If we came within more than 24 inches of her, she would abruptly dash off to another part of the house.  She would sniff a hand extended to her, but we had to move slowly, or else risk a loud snake-like hiss of fear before she dashed off. There were a few rare occasions that Samoa would snuggle with Sue on the sofa.

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Samoa made friends with Panda Bear, our friendly tuxedo cat.  All the cats in the house, and especially our fosters and former fosters, love Panda Bear.  Samoa would walk beside him, brush up against him repeatedly, sleep beside him in the front window or on Sue’s legs on the sofa, and eat next to him.

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Sunny, Panda Bear and Samoa having a snack.

In Samoa’s last nights with us, we had her sequestered to a large cage in our family room so we could closely monitor her and care for her.  Panda Bear walked into her cage, and even in her weakened state Samoa reached her head over to brush against him.

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Samoa also had become a play friend for little Farrah Fluff (another new Furry Bambino, c. 2016).  Samoa and Fluff would chase each other the length of the house, back and forth, chomp on each other and bunny kick each other’s heads, and then dash off with wild abandon.  They both seemed to enjoy the play time.

On Sunday evening, the night before Samoa passed, Farrah Fluff reached a paw into Samoa’s cage to tap (maybe pet?) Samoa on the head, and then came around from another angle to tap her friend on the side.  Fluff was obviously checking in with her friend to see how she was doing.

We are so happy we chose to adopt Samoa.  We were honored to have been Samoa’s guardians for the relatively short time she was with us. We did our best to keep her well fed, safe, and happy despite her efforts to avoid us.

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We wish we had known earlier that she was ill.  Cats have a way of hiding their illnesses until it’s too late to save them.  It’s so frustrating to know we might have done more for her.  We had her at the veterinarian on Saturday, and by late Monday afternoon she was gone. Sue has the lyrics of the Hall and Oates song “She’s Gone” running on a loop in her head.

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It’s amazing that such a little cat could leave such a big hole in our hearts.  We hope that Samoa will be waiting for us at the Rainbow Bridge. When we get too close, she will probably dash off to hide.  So long as we see her there, that’s all that matters.

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Until we meet again, Sweet Samoa.  We love you!

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hi furriends!!  Meerkat here.  first of all, i want to purrsonally thank all of you for your kind birthday wishes for Panda Bear and me. it is so nice to hear from so many furriends on our special day.

as some of you may know, Daddy does a radio show on a local college radio station. he plays show tunes and sound tracks. the Tony Awards are awards that recognize excellence in Broadway theatre, and are on tv right now. which reminds me about Antoinette, a former foster kitteh here.

two years ago, on Sunday, June 13, 2010, a young kitteh showed up at our back door and applied in purrson to enter Furry Bambino Foster Academy.

of course, we accepted her application. Mom named her Antoinette because it was the day of the Tony Awards, which are named for Antoinette Perry.

initially when Mom saw Antoinette on the back porch, she thought i had gotten out! Antoinette bears a striking resemblance to me. don’t you agree? that’s me on the futon.

Antoinette has a gold flame mark on her forehead.

i don’t have a gold flame mark on my forehead, but Cookie does.

Antoinette was young, approximately 10 months to 18 months old. as we soon found out, ahem, she was strongly desiring a ManCat’s attention. loudly and repeatedly! not to worry, Mom got Antoinette an appointment for her ladygardenectomy just a few days later!

Antoinette was affectionate, but would abruptly swat at Mom and Dad (with claws extended) when she had had enough petting. Mom and Dad were concerned about how they would be able to get Antoinette adopted if she might swat at somebody!

in addition, Antoinette was VERY unhappy to be confined to the kitten room, but she hated all of us Furry Bambinos, so she could not have access to the rest of the house. she meowed out the front window to complain about her plight.

one evening, our next door neighbor and his girlfriend knocked on our door because they could hear Antoinette meowing. Tiger Lily, the girlfriend’s cat, was missing, and they asked if we had found a cat. the next door neighbor was a young big burly guy who worked at a fitness club. mom was worried what he might do about us having his girlfriend’s cat. (well, most of her anyway. heh.)

luckily they were just happy to have their cat back. so, Antoinette graduated from Furry Bambino Foster Academy and was “adopted by” (AKA “returned to”) the next door neighbor on Friday, June 25, 2010.

Post Script from Mom: When I tell this story to most people, they find it hilarious that I accidentally had the neighbor’s cat spayed. However, another volunteer in PAWS one-upped me and said “I spay my neighbors’ cats on purpose! If they let their cats outside and they have not been spayed or neutered, I catch them and have them fixed. They go missing for a day or two and then show back up fixed.”

Our now former neighbor let his house fall into disrepair (let the gutters fall off and left them off for several years as one example), quit paying the mortgage, and the house went into foreclosure. His house has FINALLY been sold at auction at a ridiculously low price, which has lowered the values of all the houses on our street. The house is currently being renovated by the new owner who we suspect will try to flip it.

So, yeah, we are REALLY glad that we got that cat spayed!!!  Would do it again, on purpose.

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Hello Furriends! Today my sister Caramel (AKA Ms. Floooooofs) and I are three years old.

We are just taking it easy today. Breakfast, then a nap pile. Feel free to join us if you like to nap! Here is a baby picture of us when we were itteh bitteh! This is taken three years ago today – the day we were born!

This photo was taken a few weeks later. Caramel is the black fuzzball, and I am in front serving as a pillow to my sisfurs. See how big my gold flame mark looked compared to my tiny little head?

Mom and Dad brought us some fun nip toys from Coventry Cats, including a new nip nanner!  Rumor has it there is a new Da Bird, but we haven’t seen it yet.  (We dedded our old Da Bird.)  Come on over to play and eat and nap!

Purrs,
Cookie and Caramel

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Back in 2009, someone (!) said there were “too many cats on the internet”!  Egads!  There is no such thing as too many cats!

So The Cat Blogosphere came together to change NO CATS DAY to MO CATS DAY and decided to celebrate every 09/09.

At present, there are 14 felines in the house.  You read that right kittehs, one-four, quatorze, catorce, XIV.  As you may know, there are 7 of us Furry Bambinos:

Padre (that’s me)

Panda Bear

Meerkat

Cookie

Caramel

Sunny

Sky

And we presently have 7 foster kittens staying here at Furry Bambino Foster Academy.

Jett (with sister Joan watching)

Panda

Domino

Louisa

Kurt

Brigitta

Marta

Louisa, Kurt, Brigitta, and Marta’s Mom Liesl is being fostered at our sister academy:

And, we have two outdoor feral kittehs who show up for dinner just about daily:

Mama

Daddy.  (We STRONGLY suspect that Daddy is Sunny and Sky’s biological father. Mom and Dad trapped him this summer and he got his hoohaectomy.)

And then there are all the fosters who have graduated from The Furry Bambino Foster Academy in the past year, since Mo Cats Day 2010!  I don’t know if I can count that high … it’s about elebenty squillion.

Dakota

This is Marigold, now called Mia by her adoptive family.

Rusty

Woody (adopted with Rusty)

Hunter (just look at those toes!)

Silver

Rico

Lilia (renamed Karen), adopted with Vitaly

Vitaly (renamed Jack), adopted with Lilia

Nadia, adopted with Bart

Bart, adopted with Nadia

Joan (renamed Lursa), adopted with Braveheart

Braveheart (renamed B’Etor), adopted with Joan

Friedrich (renamed Furball)

Gretl (renamed Teeka)

And last but not least, Ones Who Came Before: Clyde

… and Mohawk, AKA “Mo”, the Mo-iest Mo Cat of all!

Happy Mo Cats Day, everykitteh! Purrs!

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Hi Effurryone!!  ::waves paws excitedly::

Today is my first birthday!!!

And that means it’s Sky’s first birthday too!!

We do just about everything together!

We got borned together. Happy Mother’s Day,  Mama!

We got trapped together in the very same trap. We got to hang out in the kitty condo together (at first).

We got to stay at the Furry Bambino Foster Academy together.

We like to swarm Panda Bear together.

We got adopted together!

We nap together!

We beg for treats together.

We drink milk from Mom’s cereal dish together.

In honor of our birthday, we will be holding a Comment-a-thon! For every comment we receive on this post between now and next Sunday, July 31st at 11:59 pm, Mom will donate green papers to the Cleveland APL.

Enough about that – time to party! Make yourselves at home! We have noms, nip, niptinis, nap spots, toys, and brotherly love to share!

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Greetings, furriends! It is me, your Floofy Furry Bambino, Caramel, with today’s update on our second class of Kitten Season 2011.

Meet Joan, Jett, and Braveheart! Sisters Joan (back) and Braveheart (front) are huddled together in the kitten bed. Brother Jett is sitting next to the kitten bed. (Mom and Dad considered naming Braveheart “Blackheart” to be consistent, but thought that was too unkind. Plus, Mom hopes that little Braveheart’s name becomes self-fulfilling.)

That’s because Joan, and especially Braveheart, are feral. Presently, Joan is “semi-feral” and Braveheart is about 90% feral. Brother Jett is the most trusting of the three siblings. They were found in a cat carrier along with their three other siblings in a local park. Because all six kittens were all skittish, the litter was divided up between two foster homes to socialize the babies.

Soon after enrolling in Furry Bambino Foster Academy, Jett developed some weird lesions on the bridge of his nose. About the same time,  Daddy casually mentioned to Mom over dinner that (another PAWS volunteer) “Eileen called this afternoon, and said that the other three kittens in the litter might have ringworm”.

Mom stopped eating, and replied: “R-r-r-ringworm? Do you know what that is? It is SO contagious! Aaahhhhh! That must be what the lesions on Jett’s face are!!!” She fled the dinner table and immediately called Eileen.

At the time, Daddy didn’t understand how serious ringworm is. He thought Mom was just being melodramatic (again). A lot of people think that ringworm is a parasite because of the name. Actually, ringworm is a skin infection that is caused by a fungus, the same one that causes Athlete’s Foot. Its spores become AIRBORNE and it can spread rapidly, and the spores can survive a long time (like a year) outside the host.

So Mom and Dad removed Joan, Jett, and Braveheart from the kitten room and moved them into a cat condo in the garage. Unfortunately, Nadia and Bart got exposed to Joan, Jett, and Braveheart, and would need to be quarantined for 14 days to see if they developed ringworm, too. Luckily, Lilia and Vitaly had just gotten adopted, so they were not exposed.

Next time: Treating the feral threesome for ringworm! Good times, kittehs, good times.

P.S. Joan, Jett, and Braveheart are the 13th class in the history of Furry Bambino Foster Academy. Not that we’re superstitious or anything …

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Greetings furriends!

Well two more fosters have graduated from Furry Bambino Foster Academy – Nadia and Bart! Nadia is the grey tabby female and Bart is her black tabby house panther brother. They are half of The Gymnasts class of Kitten Season 2011.

They got adopted TOGETHER into a great family where they will have the best time!

We thought we would share some photos of the Little Lunatics (as Mom calls them).

They were in PetSmart for just 24 hours and had two different families apply to adopt them!

Nadia and Bart were the most “creative” kittens in the history of Furry Bambino Foster Academy. This is what they did to Nadia’s folder containing her medical records and adoption contract. (Silly Mommy left it out where they could get to it.)

Bart is the only kitten in the history of Furry Bambino Foster Academy to perform this stunt. Look at those Froot Bats on him!!

Redecorating is another Special Skill of Bart and Nadia.

All four Gymnasts were skilled climbers. Nadia demonstrates her talents on our cat tree in the fambly room.

Not to be outdone, Bart applies his climbing skills to our screen door in the fambly room.

They especially liked to climb people! That’s Bart on Mom’s hip.

This is Vitaly on Dad’s leg.

Nadia really liked to sit on Dad’s shoulder.

Or the back of Mom’s neck.

Wonder how she got there? Here’s how.

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The past few evenings Mom and Dad let Nadia and Bart mingle with us Furry Bambinos. I had a great time chasing them all over the house. I am embarrassed to admit that we had to take turns chasing them – they wore us out! Also, I had to tell Bart to stay away from MY prey – I don’t share my kills. Nadia is sitting behind me with her high beams on.

As you can see, Nadia … (photo taken by Mom’s friend Zhou Zhou)

… and Bart liked to do everything together. They will get to spend their lives together!

Next time, we’ll tell you about our new students at the Academy!