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Feral Cats 2: The Case of Happy Cat

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  This is a series of Caturday posts on the topic of taking in feral cats .  General information (from pervious posts): For a few decades, we have rescued feral cats. In fact, with only one exception, our "domestic" cats have been ferals that we brought inside to join other ferals, already domesticated, as part of a bonded cat family. Right now, we have five cats (alas,  Murjan , the single non-feral cat we had, died from cancer last fall), all of whom get along pretty fabulously. Of course, all of that is easier said than done, and the bonding took time -- lots of it. Here are some of the things we did to create our cat family, some of which is not at all typical of what others have done, but it has worked for us. We don't trap the feral cats at all; we win them over and invite them in. We do this by feeding them a distance from the house and walking away, then moving the dish closer and closer to the house and walking less and less far away, until they are eating at ou

Feral Cats and MSI Press Staffers (and Authors) Carl and Betty Lou

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 Murjan, born in Jordan, traveled to the USA when he was just a couple of years old. He is the only domestic cat among the six cats, but he quickly established himself as the alpha cat. He sometimes thinks he is human and likes soft and warm sleeping spots. Other times, he is certain he is a dog, likes to be walked on a leash, and rolls over to have his belly rubbed.  Murjan loves to communicate, especially having night time discussions with his human.  He will even listen to and obey little ones.   For many months,  Happy Cat hung out in the bushes, waiting for the other feral cats to finish eating the food that had kindly been set outside. Then, one day he became very ill, climbed the 17 steps to the Leaver front door, where he fell, exhausted. Betty Lou discovered him there, scooped him up, and took him to the vet. Happy Cat had a serious lung infection. Once healed, it was not safe to let him outside. That did not matter because he was delighted to have found a home and will not ve

Feral Cats 3: The Persistence of Snyezhka

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  This is a series of Caturday posts on the topic of taking in  feral cats .  General information (from pervious posts): For a few decades, we have rescued feral cats. In fact, with only one exception, our "domestic" cats have been ferals that we brought inside to join other ferals, already domesticated, as part of a bonded cat family. Right now, we have five cats (alas,  Murjan , the single non-feral cat we had, died from cancer last fall), all of whom get along pretty fabulously. Of course, all of that is easier said than done, and the bonding took time -- lots of it. Here are some of the things we did to create our cat family, some of which is not at all typical of what others have done, but it has worked for us. We don't trap the feral cats at all; we win them over and invite them in. We do this by feeding them a distance from the house and walking away, then moving the dish closer and closer to the house and walking less and less far away, until they are eating at ou

Feral Cats 5: Bobolink

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  his is a series of Caturday posts on the topic of taking in  feral cats .  General information (from previous posts): For a few decades, we have rescued feral cats. In fact, with only one exception, our "domestic" cats have been ferals that we brought inside to join other ferals, already domesticated, as part of a bonded cat family. Right now, we have five cats (alas,  Murjan , the single non-feral cat we had, died from cancer last fall, and Intrepid , closely bonded to Murjan, died three years ago from the same kind of cancer), all of whom get along pretty fabulously. Of course, all of that is easier said than done, and the bonding took time -- lots of it. Here are some of the things we did to create our cat family, some of which is not at all typical of what others have done, but it has worked for us. We don't trap the feral cats at all; we win them over and invite them in. We do this by feeding them a distance from the house and walking away, then moving the dish clo

Seeking Book Reviewers Who Love Cats

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Hello, My name is Sula, and I am the parish cat at Old Mission San Juan Bautista. My first book, Surviving Cancer, Healing People: One Cat's Story , came out a couple of years ago. I am very grateful for  everyone who read and reviewed my book. All five stars! That made me so happy. More recently I have written three more books, one after the other, on slightly different topics. Many people had written to me, especially om my Face Book page , and told me that they like my books, but no one has written reviews. Reviews really help to get the word out. So, if you would like to write a review in exchange for a free copy of one of my books, just contact my publisher: info@msipress.com . Here are the books that need to be reviewed: Christmas at the Mission: A Cat's View of Catholic Customs and Beliefs Sula the Cat does it again! Sula, parish cat at Old Mission San Juan Bautista, is a cat with a special mission: to comfort people in need. Every morning, she spends time

In Memoriam: Murjan Leaver

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  Murjan went over the rainbow bridge tonight after a valiant three years of fighting lymphoma and with such indomitable spirit that even on Sunday, after his hydration, he jumped down from the chair he was on, certain that he still had the springing power that he has always had. But he fell and landed on his side. Clearly, he hours were numbered.  His last days and hours were so typical of cancer patients. (Check the MSI Press website in a few weeks; there are plans for a cancer resource page for people and animals -- those questions that one can never find an answer to in spite of how much time you spend on Google; the tentative page name is Carlr's Cancer Compendium. And check out the book on cancer by Sula, Parish Cat at Old Mission ) First, the chemotherapy stopped working. Then Murjan lost interest in food, then in drink -- and then his spirit left his body. Just like his owner, MSI Press graphic designer, Carl Leaver, a month earlier. Murjan was born in Jordan and moved to S

Cats and Cancer

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  A couple of months ago, in a Cancer Diary post, we shared the ways in which cats get cancer. When our first two cats, Intrepid and, pictured above, Murjan, came down with cancer (small cell lymphoma), one of which died within four months and the other which lived an additional 2.5 years, we were in shock. We were aware that cats could get cancer because of our experience with MSI Press author, Sula , parish cat at Old Mission.  But then it really hit home and in big numbers.   First, Intrepid and Murjan .  Then, two other cats have since been diagnosed with cancer.  Happy Cat beat skin cancer, after only one round of freezing it off his nose.  Snyezhka is now a one-year cancer survivor at the Animal Cancer Center in Monterey, Califonia, where she sees Dr. Teri Arteaga, who is also Sula's vet oncologist.  That totals 2/3 of our 6 cats! Different cancers, different cat backgrounds (all are adopted street cats), different cat breeds. No idea of causes, either, but clearly no cat i

From the Facebook and Internet Pages of Sula, the Parish Cat -- and MSI Press Author

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Hi, I am Sula, the Parish Cat. In honor of Caturday, I am going to invite you to join me on my Facebook Page  HERE   -- I have almost 800 friends now; you can be my friend, too, if you like read some blog posts about me HERE   -- all kinds of information: who I am, pictures of me, information about my book, and more: go discover! read the interview that Mudpie conducted with me when my book, Suriving Cancer, Helping People: One Cat's Stor y first came out HERE   -- it was fun; I think you will like it see  the stories about me on the Internet (from local newspapers, Guideposts Magazine, All Creatures Managzine, and more) read reviews about my books; you can a list of the reviews here Christmas at the Mission Dia de Muertos Easter at the Mission Saints I Know Surviving Cancer, Healing People: One Cat's Story Tale of a Mission Cat read some excerpts from my books HERE And, for some immediate reading pleasure right here, this is the Canticle of Sula that Stacy Gentry, my care pro

Excerpt from Surviving Cancer, Healing People: One Cat's Story (Sula, Parish Cat at Old Mission): I Am Not Alone

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Excerpt -- I Am Not Alone (photo by Kaleena Scargill) Some of the people who form a big part of my mission struggle with cancer. I do understand them—their fears, their pain, their sometimes-sadness. I feel those things, too, at least as much as a cat can feel. I know that God made humans to have even deeper feelings and a greater range of feelings, and I am glad that some of those feelings include loving animals because it is through that love that I can connect with them and bring them the message of God’s love. I have to tell you about one of my special friends, Loryn. She understands me because she had cancer, and I understand her because I had cancer—the same way Cody and I understand, support, and love each other. Maybe it is better if I am not the one to tell her story, though. Maybe she should tell her own story. I think you will find it more interesting that way. So, here is what she wrote for my book about her experience: Over seven years ago, I

Calling Cat and Book Lovers Everywhere: Free Books for Online Reviews

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Love cats? Like to read good books? Like to read good books about cats? Have online sites where you can post reviews? We need you! We are looking for reviewers for our wonderful cat books. All have received top-notch reviews, but none have received LOTS of reviews. We want to bring these good books to more readers. That takes more reviews. If you are willing to review any of the following books, we will be happy to send you a free copy. Contact editor@msipress.com. How My Cat made Me a Better Man Books by Sula, Parish Cat at Old Mission: Christmas at the Mission Dia de Muertos (in Spanish) Easter at the Mission Saints I Know Surviving Cancer, Healing People: One Cat's Story Tale of a Mission Cat Intrepid