Hi everyone and a very warm welcome to the new subscribers who hurled themselves through the catflap to escape the torrential downpours we lucky folk in the UK have been having recently. Plonk the cat on your lap, grab a tipple of choice and enjoy.

The Christmas story/poem competition is now closed.  It was a unanimous decision that ‘Carlo’s Christmas’ by Lynn Schiffhorst was the winning story and Petal Knee’s poem: ‘Kitty’s Christmas Dinner’ was the winning poem. Danny Boag’s story ‘What a cat wants for Christmas’ received a special mention from the judges.

Well done to the winners.  They will each receive a signed copy of Jem Vanston’s book ‘A cat called Dog’.

Lynn and Danny’s stories and Petal’s poem will all be published on the website in time for the Christmas update. Thank you to everyone who took part.   

Heads up for the 6th annual shelter shiver which our good friend, Ed Kostro, is taking part in. He says: ‘My next money raising event for a good cause.  Rebecca joined me on The Mutt Strut and at Taco Fest serving beer, but she says ‘No Way’ on this one – Bummer!

Please donate if you can, and please pass this along to anyone who you think might make a donation.

Thanks!

Ed’

http://www.firstgiving.com/ALIVErescue/6th-annual-shelter-shiver

I know the subscribers to the Mewsletter will rally round for a good cause so do click on the link and click on Ed’s name.   Thank you!!

Happy belated Thanksgiving to those who celebrate this day and Dezi and Lexi – the very special service cats who help their Mommy, Audra, have written a really good piece about what Thanksgiving means to them.

You can read it here:

Giving thanks every day

MOST POPULAR CAT NAMES 2014

The Cats Protection carried out a survey to find the most popular cat names for 2014 and they are as follows:

1.      Poppy
2.      Charlie
3.      Molly
4.      Willow
5.      Oscar

On the Home Page if you click on the link it will take you to a Cats Protection page showing all sorts of different names which you may find interesting!

Also on the Home Page is a very interesting piece written by top cat behaviourist, Vicky Halls, called Understanding our cats: Friend or Foe.  Do read it and let me know your thoughts as many of you (as I once did) have multi-cat households.

AMAZING CATS

I think most people are familiar with Hamish McHamish, the wonderful ginger cat from St Andrews, Fife, in Scotland?  My Internet friend, Patrick Roberts, has a really great website called www.purr-n-fur.org.uk and he graciously allowed me permission to publish Hamish’s story on the daily mews website.

Hamish McHamish  

As this is the centenary year for the First World War, Patrick has meticulously researched stories and anecdotes of cats ‘working’ on the front line.  Please do go to his website:

www.purr-n-fur.org.uk and check out the stories, they are really fascinating.  

BOOK QUIZ

There is still time to enter the book quiz – get your answers to me by 10th December please.

Book quiz

BOOK REVIEWS

Cooking for your cat by Sophie Klein is a really sumptuous looking book which immediately Casey decided to sit on! Perhaps that’s cat-speak for ‘cook me some of these delicious meals right away, human!’

Here’s the link:

Cooking for your cat

I receive a lot of cat books which take me ages to wade through.  So I am always hugely grateful when anyone reads a cat book and writes a review for me.

The Christmas Cat by Melody Carlson was reviewed for me by Ellen Pilch, of Massachusetts, US.

Tigger: Memoirs of a Cosmopolitan Cat by Susanne Haywood was reviewed for me by Penel Ashworth (of Squirt’s Scribblings fame and Squirt’s own book: Reservoir Cats)

CAPTION COMPETITION

As with the book quiz, there is still time to enter the Caption Competition.  Please send your entries – up to 5 captions – to me p.dewberry@ntlworld.comby 10th December.

Caption competition

The winning caption will win a signed copy of ‘Learn to Speak Cat: the latest mews’ by Anthony Smith.

CAT QUESTIONS FOR SQUIRT

Casey was concerned at his inability play with toys and his complete ignorance of what he was supposed to do that he secretly wrote to Uncle Squirt for his advice. As always, Squirt gave Casey the benefit of his extraordinary wisdom and sound common sense.

What is this thing called play?

CHARITIES AND RESCUE CENTRES

This year is the centenary year for the start of World War 1 but few people realize that this year is also the 75th anniversary of the start of World War 2.  Cats Protection began life in 1927 to try to help people to look after their cats properly but the war years were to take a tremendous toll on all pets.

In the autumn 2014 issue of The Cat – the Cats Protection quarterly magazine – Louise Mudd has written a heart-stopping account of what life was like for cats and how The Cat magazine tried to help.

A fight for survival  

FELINE FITNESS

Also in ‘The Cat’ there was a really interesting piece written by Esther Newton.  I tracked her down (what did we do before Google!!!?) and she very kindly gave me permission to use it on the website.

The healing power of the cat

FRANCES GILLOTTI

For several months now, Frances has been illustrating Teddie Tumpkins - the latest brainchild of Carol Lake – and I thought it was about time that you all got to meet her.  So do check out her new section and link up with her on Facebook. 

 Frances Gillotti

Frances has an online shop where you can browse and buy her amazing artwork:

www.etsy.com/shop/ArtByFrances

KITTY BITS

Casey is not renowned for his exuberance and when I made him a couple of catnip toys (fish shaped) he was totally nonplussed.  His little friend – and doppelganger that I’ve named Gibbs (after a character in NCIS) came round to play a while back and showed Casey what to do.  Now Casey spends a least a particle of a second playing and licking one of the fish – whichever one is to paw.

They are so quick and easy to make you could easily knock up a few for all the kitties in your family and the kitties of the neighbourhood and using left over scraps from other furnishing projects means they’re virtually free to make.  Stuff them with Farmer Ed’s Organic Catnip (see review for contact details) and you’ve made a lot of felines very happy.

Catnip toys

Also on the subject of making something for your cat for Christmas, how about a nice new bed? My thanks to Stacy Mantle of www.petsweekly.com for her permission to use this article.

This cat bed is the cat’s meow!

LINKS

Mike in Canada sent me this link of Grumpy Cat’s 13 reasons why cats hate Christmas

Why cats hate Christmas

OTHER MEWSINGS

It’s well-known that Winston Churchill was a cat lover and Steve Ainsworth has written a brilliantly informative and interesting article which was in the autumn issue of The Cat magazine.  Steve very kindly gave me permission to use his article – for which I’m hugely grateful.

The few with a mew: Churchill’s cats

SQUIRT’S SCRIBBLINGS

The irrepressible Squirt is a wow on Twitter and joins in with lots of events with his ‘anipals’.  Why don’t I let Squirt tell you all about it himself!

A little bird told me …

TRAVELOGUES AND HOLIDAY MOGS

Some people are fortunate enough to go on holidays a couple of times a year and Carol Lake is a serial cruiser; she loves going on cruises.  But her holiday trips do have a purpose.  Before she goes, she researches the ports and places the ship will dock at and then she goes in search of the animal charity shops and colonies of luckless felines.  Armed with a bag or pockets full of cat kibbles she gives each little kitty a handful of treats as she goes on her way.

This is an occasional series of articles that Carol has written about her ports of call, the charity shops she visits and the kitties she meets. 

The Ark

You may remember in the Scratching Post, Marian sent a link (see below) showing how to get a cat to go into a circle. Did anyone try it?  I do have a hula hoop and I did try it out on Casey and at first he just sat outside of it but then he sat inside!  Glenda in Somerset (UK) sent me some pictures of her cat Oscar sitting in his ‘circle’.

Trap a cat in 3 easy steps (Marian’s link)

Casey and Oscar ‘encircled’

CRUELTY TO CATS JUST GETS WORSE

I’ve heard of some awful stories recently and I could cry at the savage way people treat animals.  This little cat was thrown from a moving car; thankfully the act was witnessed by the Blue Cross personnel and they found the kitten a new loving home:

Thrown from a car

This next story beggars belief.  Please sign the petition because Facebook have to take responsibility for the content that is uploaded.  There is a video link attached to this piece but I urge you DO NOT WATCH IT – you will be very upset and traumatized.  Please sign the petition and voice your anger at the perpetrators of this heinous crime in no uncertain terms.

http://linkis.com/forcechange.com/1327/QC3HQ

And that just about wraps up this month’s Mewsletter.  There won’t be a Scratching Post as I’m planning to put out a Christmas Mewsletter just before Christmas – there will be a veritable feast of delightful Christmas stories to give you the feelgood factor as you enjoy your Christmas dinner!

I welcome your feedback; good, bad or indifferent so don’t hold back – tell it like it is.

Until the next time take care and keep safe.

Love

Pauline – Editor in Chief

Casey – Editor in Chief’s Assistant and Marvelling at the Delights of Catnip Toys – homemade or otherwise!

xx

A Cats Purr

"Cats make one of the most satisfying sounds in the world: they purr ...

A purring cat is a form of high praise, like a gold star on a test paper. It is reinforcement of something we would all like to believe about ourselves - that we are nice."

Roger A Caras

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