Everything · Pictures · The Cats

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

It’s still been raining until yesterday, but at least today, the sun seems to try to come through. Another good thing is that the temperature went up a little bit, so it’s not feeling like fall anymore.

Samantha has been watching the street for a while now. Normally, the sun would be shining into this window all morning until midday, but she only got a little bit of sun when the sun was trying to come through for a few minutes. Though, watching the street is interesting either way.

2019 05 22 Samantha on the window
Samantha on the living room window

Thanks to the constant bad weather with it’s sudden changes, I’m having migraines almost every day. Today was no different when I woke up with yet another migraine. Thankfully though, the migraine was not severe. So I got up and took my Triptan medication for the migraine, made myself a cup of strong coffee and sat on the balcony for the fresh air. If I have a severe migraine, I go straight back to bed after taking the medicine, because I can’t bear anything else, but to lie still in the quiet darkness of the bedroom, with the window opened for fresh air.

With the cats on the balcony too, and the birds up and down from their feeder, it’s a great distraction until the medicine kicks in.

2019 05 22 Samantha and Murli
Murli and Samantha watching the birds

Sonic likes to sit just by the door inside when the weather isn’t good enough for his liking.

2019 05 22 Sonic and Samantha
Samantha and Sonic

Samantha jumped straight up on my chair while I took this picture ;-)

We were being watched as well, by a pigeon.

2019 05 22 Pigeon on the roof

We have about 3 pairs of pigeons come by every day, it’s always the same ones. And one of them likes to sit on our balcony for a bit, always on the same spot, which is a highlight for Murli, because she is fascinated by pigeons.

2019 05 22 Murli and pigeon
Murli

My migraine is gone thankfully, and I hope it will be a day without rain. It looks good so far!

Have a wonderful day everyone!

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

Spring is coming, cat sitting and Ralphs apartment in Spain

March 24, 2019
Samantha

This afternoon was warm enough to leave the balcony door and the windows open! I put up the protective cat net on the living room window as well! It’s lovely. The cats really enjoy being out on the balcony and getting some fresh air on the windows. Samantha took the chair for herself right away of course, and had a nap on it. But we have enough chairs.

Murli was out too, but first she had her nap on the stove this afternoon. Just like the other day, when I took the following picture.

March 21, 2019
Samantha and Murli

But after her nap and having some food, Murli got some sun as well.

I put our umbrella up on the balcony every day now, because it’s just so bright in the kitchen otherwise, which easily gives me migraines. But it’s lovely at the same time that it’s finally getting warm.

I just took these pictures before I started this post. The trees are blossoming and there are primroses and daisies and all kinds of other flowers on the lawn.

Samantha is doing a lot better now with her tummy. The chronic inflammation has gone down and she’s not throwing up (except for furballs sometimes) or having the runs.

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Samantha just before, waiting while I was preparing the kitties food. That’s how she sits and looks at me when it’s time for food. 

Murli is doing perfectly well too. Her mouth is healing without problems and she’s eating properly. The latest blood test results came back a few days ago and it shows that she’s doing very well. The thyroid meds are working and everything else is perfectly fine. But she’s going to have her milligrams for her thyroid medication reduced, since the blood test shows that it’s just slightly above the desired level now.

Sonic is still on his month long treatment with the tablets that help his immune system and he’s the usual happy boy he always is. His eyes aren’t as runny anymore and his nose is better too. But he’ll be getting some long term medication for his auto immune disorder after this round of tablets is done.

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Samantha and Sonic after they just woke up

In all, the cats are happy and doing well!

Also, we had an idea…

As many will know, I had to stop working because my migraines and my joint condition had gotten so bad, that I just could not do it any longer. That was in 2012. My day to day life feels so much better, but even with just normal household chores and/or grocery shopping, I reach my limits regularly. Because it does not take much for something to feel physically exhausting to me. Yet I still wonder if there is anything I can do. Now with Murlis quite expensive medication, I felt that it would be great if I could at least earn that little bit with SOMETHING.

Then Ralph said I should be a cat sitter, since I am good with cats, including cats that don’t know me, and I just love everything that has to do with cats. I did think about it before, but I thought there are so many pet sitters/cat sitters, that I would not have much of a chance without official cat sitting experience.

Still, if there is something I can do and that I can do really well, then it’s dealing with cats. I can do it physically and should not reach my limit, even if I had to visit a home with cats once or twice a day. It’s just a bit different and does not require a long stretch of strenuous activity, and does not cause stress. Even if I do get a migraine while visiting a home to care for cats, then I just take my medicine and let it work, while I sit down to pet the cats, or brush them, or play with them, without having to move around a lot.

Anyway, I thought why not. It’s not going to hurt to try. So I used my FB account to make a page for myself, offering cat sitting for Graz. You might have seen it in my sidebar already. It’s in German since it’s for my local area. But I’ll put 2nd description on it, that will be in English, since there are also a lot of English speaking people living in Graz.

What I noticed so far, and expected anyway, is that people looking for someone to feed / care for their cats in their absence, are asking specifically for someone experienced in that job. I mean I’d be really picky too if I would look for someone coming into my home while I’m not there, to take care of my fur-babies. That person would have to be really trustworthy and nothing but kind to the cats.

So we will see what happens with that adventure 😄

And another thing…

Ralphs apartment in Spain still needs to be sold. After nothing really happened with people wanting to buy it, we knew we needed to do something. So the first thing I did was to create a blog to show case the apartment, since ads usually have a limit on photos and text. Maybe some sites where I can put up ads will allow me to link to it. It will probably take a while, but it would be such a relief for Ralph if the apartment is finally sold.

That’s it for now 😊 The kitties and myself wish you all a lovely Sunday! It’s already past 9pm here, so I’ll be off to bed in a bit.

Love and hugs, Natascha and the cats 😺😸😽

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

February 28, 2019 – All Cats to the Vet!

Hello dear friends!

The time flies by as fast as usual… or faster even than last year? We’ve been doing just fine and are still enjoying our life together with our cute little family.

We both got worried about Sonic though, because he became really sniffly and his eyes were running. He really had trouble getting air through his nose. So I made an appointment with our Vet Lady to get him checked out. And after Sonic, I planned to get Samantha checked out properly as well, since she started having days where she would be throwing up for a few hours and then have the runs. It would usually last for less than a day and then be fine again for a bit. Though recently those bouts happened more often, therefore she needed to go to the Vet too.

Murli had already been to the Vet towards the end of 2018 and got diagnosed with Hyperthyroidism. Since then she had to get a tablet once a day to get it sorted out, which she will have to get for the rest of her life. Murli was doing very well with it and it was obvious she’s feeling great. The second thing with Murli is her teeth problems. She started having problems with her gums and teeth, and had to be sedated to get the worst sorted out in 2016.  In the fall of 2018, she lost one fang.

On to the details of the recent Vet visits…

Sonic
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He got that bandage after blood was taken, just to stop any more bleeding. We took it off soon after.
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Sonic with his little bandage that he got after blood was taken from this leg. We took it off soon afterwards.

On Monday, February 18, 2019 I nervously wrapped Sonic in a blanket to pick him up and put him into the carrier. Once in the carrier, I freed him of his blanket so he could move. Instantly I felt so bad, because he really was meowing so loud, wanting to be let out again. But it had to be done, and so I quickly went outside with him, waiting for the Taxi to come.

Thankfully the Taxi came quickly and we arrived at the Vet a few minutes later. Sonic had stopped meowing as soon as I was outside with him and he remained quiet the whole time we were sitting in the waiting room, which wasn’t very long.

Ralph and I had anticipated that Sonic would be really difficult to keep still on the table, because he is usually so frightened that he tries everything to get away and run off. Though, none of that happened. The Vet was able to lift him out of the carrier with no problem at all. He kept still, not trying to flee at all. He was just looking around a little bit. Even his heart rate was completely calm and his muscles didn’t feel tense either. The Vet was able to check him out properly without any problem. He was fine as she carried him off to be x-rayed in another room, and he was fine when he came back. Even during the blood test, he didn’t even flinch, and even closed his eyes. When everything was done and the carrier was put back on the table, he got in all by himself. It was the most amazing thing that he remained as relaxed as he was.

So I called a Taxi again and arrived back home in no time. As soon as I entered our building, I could feel Sonic starting to move in the carrier… He knew he was home, even though we weren’t in our apartment yet.

I instantly sat the carrier on the bed to let him out, and I tried to film it as well:

He was really such a brave little boy!

About two days later we got called with the results. Turns out it was like the Vet thought anyway… He’s got an autoimmune disease which causes his symptoms. He got medicine for it now. Nose drops that are to be given as needed, in case his nose blocks up again and he got tablets that are strengthening his immune system, which he has to get for a month. Since I can crush that tablet, I just put it over his dry food, right at the top. He doesn’t mind it and eats it all up without a problem.

Still, we will have to see how he is doing and he might get more medicine later on if it’s not improving enough.

Samantha
Samantha in the carrier
Samantha in her carrier

We had already planned to get Samantha to the Vet next anyway, but after she had a really bad night of her throwing up repeatedly, I made an appointment for her the next morning. On Saturday, February 23, 2019 I packed poor little Samantha into a carrier and hung it around my shoulder and got on my bicycle to bring her to the Vet. The reason is, I am just as quickly at the Vet as I would be with a Taxi, it’s free and most importantly, and I usually feel really really uncomfortable with the Taxi drivers, who mostly bombard me with all kinds of questions, and often get very personal, or worse.

Anyway… Samantha always meows when she gets put into a carrier and she does NOT stop. Or rather, it will be quite a while before she stops. I recorded her meows on my way to the Vet. I was talking to her the whole way from leaving home to the Vet. She was looking at me the whole time while meowing. I felt so bad!

Below is a video I recorded as we were leaving the Vet. Just imagine the same pleading meow from that video going on the whole 10 minutes of our trip to the Vet and me constantly talking to her, responding to each of her meows. Poor little girl…

After we arrived at the Vet Samantha got quieter. Though, there was another cat in the waiting room, a boy. If he meowed, Samantha did as well. If Samantha meowed, he started again too. Those two went back and forth like that… Once we got called in, Samantha seemed a bit more calm. She didn’t struggle on the table with the Vet and was just as brave as Sonic. Though her heart rate was a bit quicker. She was checked out and everything was looking really good. She had perfect teeth, and according to the Vet, seemed like a much younger cat, because she was in such good shape. Except for her poor bowels though, which appeared to be having a problem. Samantha got a shot of vitamins and antibiotics.

When it was time to go home, and she was put back in her carrier, Samantha started meowing again… She did the whole way home. I did not film our way home and just left my camera in the bag. I just have a short video of her while we were outside near my bicycle, shortly before leaving for home.

Yesterday morning we got the call with all the results from the blood test, which confirmed the suspicions that Samantha has chronic inflammation going on in her bowels. Otherwise, the blood test results for her were perfect. No other problems at all.

Today I picked up Samantha’s medications at the Vet. As soon as I got back home, we tried to give Samantha the first tablet halve. I put the half in a bit of meat spread, made a little tiny ball and put it in her food, as that always works with Murli. But Samantha’s tablet probably has a smell to it that she can detect right away and so she ate everything BUT the bit that contained her tablet. Ralph held her while I opened her mouth and put the tablet in. I tried it with food and treats first, but she ate everything BUT the bit containing the tablet.

Next, I tried to put it into a little treat. But again, she ate everything BUT the tablet. So we decided we will just have to put it into her mouth… Which is something neither of us wants to do and I’m always getting really upset having to force anything with the cats. Though it could not be helped, she really needs the meds. So while Ralph held Samantha, I opened her mouth and put the tablet (still wrapped in a bit of meat) into her mouth and then closed it. Thankfully she swallowed it. I was so worried she would hate me now… But she doesn’t! She still gives me head rubs and everything. Unfortunately, she has to get those tablets twice a day… Oh dear.

Murli
Murli in her carrier
Murli in her carrier at the Vet
Murli in her carrier
Murli in her carrier at the Vet

Towards the end of last year, Murli has been to the Vet a couple times and like I wrote before, she was diagnosed with Hyperthyroidism. She’s been on medication for it since then and is doing very well. She gets her tablet every morning with her food. I use chicken meat bread spread and put her little tablet in it, forming a little tiny ball. Then I just put it on top of her food and she’ll eat it all up. It has been working perfectly and she didn’t have any side effects either.

Aside from her Thyroid, she’s in really good health. Well and her teeth problems. I will bring Murli to the Vet again soon, to get her blood test done, to check on how the medication is working and if she needs a change in her dose, and to decide what to do to take care of her teeth. I don’t want her to be in pain, but I am really worried about her being put under anaesthesia. But thankfully we have a really wonderful Vet, who will only do what is necessary, with the least risk to Murli.

For now, we will just have to see how all of them are doing. Hopefully, the medications all work for Samantha and that she can gain some weight again.

There is a lot more that I need to write, and there are more photos and videos to post. But this post was just for the cats and it’s already really long!

Thank you all for reading and still coming by, despite that my updates have been so far apart. Hope everyone is doing well, and their furbabies too!

Lots of love from us all ❤️️❤️️❤️️

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

Happy New Year!

Hello everyone! We hope you’re having a nice New Years Eve and that your holidays have been great!

Ralph, the cats and myself are just having a relaxed holiday really, with just being home with the cats, having good food and cake. Of course the cats also get special treats ;-)

Samantha and Sonic are still curled up and asleep. Only Murli is walking around at the moment. They’re all relaxed and happy. Thankfully, with the windows and backdoor closed, it’s not that noisy and the bangs sound distant. It will get loud around midnight though, but we’re not right in the middle of the city, so there’s not that much going on. I’m very glad for that, as it’s horribly noisy right in the city, with constant bangs and fireworks and festival tents with loud music going till 5 in the morning. I enjoy not having to deal with that anymore so much!

Could not be happier to be together with Ralph and the sweet cats in our home. And it’s amazing to me that this is now our 2nd New Years together (since Ralph came to Austria in September 2017). I’m looking forward to every day of our life going forward. Every single day is a lovely one with our little family and I’m so thankful for that.

May the new year be a peaceful and happy one for all of us!

Lots of love! Thank you, each and every one of you, for commenting and visiting my little blog, despite the fact I wasn’t very active this year.

How is New Years where you are?

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

Oh no, the summer is almost over…

… and I haven’t even been posting since late spring!

Hey dear friends! Yes, it’s been a really long time, shame on me. Though, there wasn’t really a day I haven’t been thinking about many of the friends I made through this blog, and about how much I miss to post. Especially, I sometimes would just like to write little everyday blog posts, to remember them and to share them with you. Maybe that’s how I should do it, so it’s just a part of daily life. Even if I have days with migraine, I could still do something little. There are so many of you and other bloggers, who have so much more to deal with than I do, and they still post constantly.

Almost a whole year with Ralph in Austria

Anyways, the months just raced by since Ralph and I got married and we would like for time to go a bit slower. Maybe it’s because we’re just really happy! In addition, it’s almost a year now that Ralph, Samantha and Sonic arrived in Austria! It was way past midnight on September 16, 2017 that I picked them up at the airport in Vienna. Since then we’ve been together every day and enjoyed it all, except for crazy bureaucracy of course…

On October 4, it will be a year that we’ve been in our apartment, our home!

Bad weather all year

It was a rather rainy spring and summer, with the temperatures way below of what they normally are. So it was a big difference for Ralph, coming from the lovely warm southern Spain to southern Austria, where it started off as a very cold and rainy fall late 2017, then turned into a very very cold and snowy winter that lasted till March, and the spring and summer were like I said rainy and too cool. That whole year was nothing like it normally would be here. Hopefully, it will be back to normal next year…

We also had a couple bad storms in the early summer. One afternoon, I just barely made it into our building, when the hail started falling behind me, with hailstones as big as golf balls… Another storm came through the same month, and the storm wind ripped off flat metal roofs, big trees fell and even the tree in our garden is now just half of what it was.

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The tree right after the storm
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Close up of the broken tree branch
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The broken off branch lying behind the tree and another branch of the tree is just dangling on the right

The photos in the following slideshow show the damage of that storm in the park near our home. It looked like this all over Graz though.

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The Cats

Murli had her birthday on August 17! She turned 13. Since Ralph doesn’t know the exact date of Samantha and Sonics birth date, I decided to make August 17 the birthday of Samantha and Sonic as well. All three got special treats and food all day and the next.

Unfortunately, by the end of August, I noticed Murli had her little tongue out slightly all evening and didn’t close her mouth completely, but I could not see anything, and she was eating normally too. The next morning I saw that her lower left fang was leaning all the way to the left. It was obviously loose, as it wasn’t like that the night before. We had no idea what was going on, or how it happened. The only thing we could think of was that she might have had an accident while jumping. Murli acted completely normal, was not in any pain, as she kept eating without avoiding one side.

But it had to be taken care of so I called our Vet Lady to make an appointment for Murli.

Murli at the Vet to have her tooth sorted out
Murli in her bag, not happy to be at the Vet

We took a Taxi to the Vet, as it was a bit of a distance from home. As long as Murli is in a carrier she’s fine and not upset. She only gets upset the moment she smells that she’s at the Vet, poor little girl… She wasn’t allowed any food all morning, due to the possibility of sedation.

The Vet and I rolled Murli all up in a blanket to keep her still while she was checked out. The tooth was very loose, and the Vet said she’ll see how Murli reacts and if there is any resistance she will have to be sedated. But Murli didn’t even flinch, it didn’t seem to hurt her, and the tooth was almost falling out by itself. Apparently, Murli must have had toothache a while ago, for quite some time, as the root of the fang had already dissolved. I was quite shocked hearing that, as Murli never acted strangely all these months. She always ate normally, her tail was up all the time and never gave any reason to worry. Normally I notice any little change in her and know when something isn’t right, just not this time.

In addition, the Vet also did blood work, and the results were perfect, except for her liver values, which were slightly elevated. So she got tablets for that, which I give her once a day (she loves them, as they taste like treats). Murli has always had problems with reacting badly to all kinds of cat foods. There isn’t much that she won’t throw up or the the runs from and it was like that since she was a kitten. She has some great food though that she is doing fine with. She also loves anything with milk… Icecream, cream, yoghurt etc. But I now take extra good care that she won’t eat anything except her own food, as anything else could be a reason for the elevated values.  In a few weeks, I’ll bring Murli to the Vet again, for another blood test. Then we’ll see if anything has changed. So we’ll see.

There is a difference now, after the tooth is gone. Murli seems to be really relaxed and even more happy than before. So she must have been in pain in some way before, even if she didn’t really show it, or act like she was. It’s quite obvious now with how relaxed she seems. I feel so bad that I had no idea anything was going on with her. The tooth looked even normal before, you would have never guessed anything is wrong with it.

Poor girl!!!

Murli after the Vet
Murli right after the Vet

A few hours later after we’ve been at the Vet, Murli was really happy and having a good stretch up on the fridge <3

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A little later the same day and she was feeling great! 

As for Sonic and Samantha? They are doing purrfectly fine! We thankfully have gotten some sunny weather now, so the three of them catch up on getting some sun on the balcony.

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Murli (left), Samantha, Sonic (right)
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Samantha and Sonic
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Samantha and Sonic

Especially Murli and Samantha are out on the balcony all the time. Lets hope we’ll have a sunny and rather warm late summer and fall, would be nice!

Currently

As of now, I’m writing on another post, and I want to try to post a lot more, even if it’s just tiny little posts or pictures. Documenting life, our life with the cats and whatever else.

Ralph and I want to do a couple things for our apartment. Make it really pretty and get all the lamps and pictures up. It’s lovely already, but there are still some things left that need to be done. I’ll take pictures of it for sure.

There’s also a really weird neighbour that I want to write about…

I think I’ve rambled on for long enough now…

Have a lovely rest of the week everyone! Much love from Ralph, the cats and me!