Category Archives: Senor Gato


Not the human trafficers across the Texas-Mexico border called coyotes, but the animal kind. City of Austin is telling neighborhood associations the animal kind are becoming plentiful and to watch out for them wandering into yards in search of food and water. And then preying on small pets let outdoors.

“Haze coyotes when seen,” a city news release says. “And always supervise small pets when outside. Hazing keeps these adaptable animals wary of humans and less likely to hang around. Yelling, waving your arms, spraying the animal with a hose or tossing non-edible objects near it will encourage it to leave.”

Shoot. And I thought the Californicator invasion was the main thing we had to worry about.

Via City of Austin


Cat ambition



The truth of house cats


Cat toys

This will be a recurring feature now that we have been adopted by a cat. We’re not naive enough to believe that we adopted him.

This first featured item, the so-called “famous” Bergen Turbo Scratcher (well it has had 3,468 reviews at Amazon, 85 percent of them 4 stars or better), has been a big hit with Senor Gato, our orange male tabby also known as Pumpkin.

We’ve also been pleased—especially as it only cost a third of what we paid for a carpet-covered scratching post he’s completely ignored for a month now. Not that the little white ball part of the gizmo is getting any notice, mind you, but he’s torn the cardboard scratch pad to shreds. When he isn’t doing that, and eating the cardboard shards, he likes to recline on the pad and snooze.

In the course of shopping for a replacement pad, I even discovered you can use a butter knife to pry up the old one which reveals that the opposite side is fresh and ready to go. Five stars for the “famous” Bergen Turbo Scratcher!

UPDATE: Forgot to mention the scratcher comes with a small baggie of catnip which SG seems to love. You sprinkle it on the cardboard. That might be the reason for the scratcher’s success in general and with with him.

I could pee on this


He could, indeed, but he probably won’t. Our Pumpkin is litter-box trained and content to use it, so long as it’s kept clean. But he has enjoyed discovering new prospects for observation, such as the roofs of our cars. The only thing missing is mice. Perhaps we should introduce a few.

Pumpkin’s Peripatetic Poop

I usually scoop the poop out of Pumpkin’s litter box into a baggie people use to clean up after their dogs. Then, if I’m not interested in checking to make sure he’s not in the garage before I open the door, I put the baggie atop the spare tire on the back of the CRV. Planning to take it out when I take the car out.

Forgot it (of course) this afternoon, so when I took Mr. Boy for his haircut, I noticed as we were cruising through the neighborhood the baggie was still there atop the tire. I figured it would blow off. Brisk wind today. It didn’t. Entering the freeway, I was sure it would blow off. It slid in between the tire and the back window and stayed put.

I forgot about it at the barbershop and didn’t notice until the CRV was back in the garage that the poop bag was still there. Finally disposed of it properly. A little amazed at how persistent Pumpkin’s peripatetic poop can be. Heh.

“Parachuting” cats

British anthrozoologist John Bradshaw in his 2014 feline science book Cat Sense reports how cats can survive falls from tall buildings and trees by performing an intricate midair ballet. Their “gravity-detecting” bio systems cause the forelegs and hind legs to rotate to point downward as they fall.

Then “…forming a ‘parachute’ by spreading all four legs out sideways, before adopting the landing position at the last minute. Laboratory simulations suggest that this limits the falling speed to a maximum of fifty-three miles per hour. This tactic apparently allows some cats to survive falls from high buildings with only minor injuries.”

Some cats also counter-rotate their tails fast, like a helicoptor, to stabilize their fall “…while the back is arched to cushion the landing.” Pretty clever, those cats.