Janette's Cat Book Blog

Cats in the Hats - Shelter cats masquerade as pop culture icons

I highly recommend looking at this article, "Shelter cats masquerade as pop culture icons," on the Mother Nature Network site to see the fun way shelter cats have been photographed as "pop icons" to make them even more interesting and irresistible to potential adopting families or individuals!

Bravo to the photographer Shaina Fishman and costume maker Ryen Blashke for their "Cats in the Hats" series! Here's one of Shaina's cool pictures to start you off; yes, it's none other than Harry Potter Cat!

National Cat Day!

Glad I have my special cat, Tristan Jinx, and my two wonderful dogs Finnan and Keira shown in this summertime picture. It seems appropriate and right to me to honor cats on National Cat Day which is October 29. Cats are some of the funnest members of our families after all -- they sure love to play with us and without us! Check out these short clips of cats in our lives at USA Today's article "National Cat Day in 19 GIFs"!

These are the special American days for all pets:




Fully-illustrated cat book coming out soon!

The complete set of illustrations for In Defense of Cats! is almost finished in a beautiful digital format thanks to my very computer-savvy brother, David. Each image was first carefully hand-drawn by my talented mother, Rose Dean. We expect to publish the fully-illustrated book online in time for the year-end holidays! In the meantime, put on your best English accent and get the inexpensive text version below with a few pictures to read to the kids and cat lovers in your family! No one has been able to resist the charms of the fun cat character, Sir William, so far who was named after the extraordinary English writer, William Shakespeare!

With one click, you can help the Animal Rescue Site!

I couldn't love my shelter-adopted pets more.  Like me, you can also help shelter animals who are not yet adopted by visiting the Animal Rescue Site.  They are affiliated with the Greater Good site and help pets nationwide.  Just click their logo for their site and gift store! They have great pet-related gifts for the holiday season and all year long!

Cat book author Janette and her rescued doggies (First Christmas together - Lake Tahoe 2007)
Did I rescue dogs Finnan and Keira (and new cat Tristan) or did they rescue me? Both are true!

National Cat Day & Other Fun Days for Pets!

InDefenseOfCats.com celebrates April 11: National Pet Day!

Days to celebrate your furry (and feathered and scaly) family members! 




For more info, visit PetDayUSA.com.

Beloved Cat: Once Mortal Enemy, Now Immortal Friend

We humans have a unique relationship with cats, and our beloved domestic felines come from one of the most powerful and deadly lines of predators to ever walk the earth.  If you are a cat lover or are intrigued by cats, I believe you will enjoy my new poem written in tribute to them which I named:

Love and Love Again

Beloved Cat, Magic

Magic rescued with a damaged tail.
Cat Book Author's Beloved Cat, Magic, with his vet-fixed tail.
My beloved young cat, Magic, passed on in mid-August 2012. I had adopted him as a feral stray in October 2011.  He was such a fun and social cat who loved my two dogs and his new life in Carson City (and inspired my later tribute to all cats in his memory).  Much as I tried, Magic would not remain in the house and snuck out fast-as-lightning whenever the dogs were let out or when I went out.  At first, he would stay in the fenced yard with the dogs.  

With time however, Magic was soon up on the wooden side fence enjoying his new catwalk. Then, he began starting to walk up the driveway to greet neighbors out walking their dogs who were amazed at his friendliness toward them and their dogs.  I worried, though, that he would get hit by a car or taken by a coyote with his new roamings so I worked hard to keep him inside.  Unfortunately, he got out again and surprisingly snuck under the wrought iron gate in my wonderful next-door neighbor's yard where he knew two huge huskies, Vivian and new (but big!) puppy, Thunder, lived.  He must have wanted to play with them and vice-versa, but Magic got his neck broken because they were MUCH bigger and stronger than my two dogs whom he usually played with.  All of my adjacent neighbors cried about Magic's passing, and I never got over it for he was so precious to me.  I wish he'd known that he'd "gotten too big for his britches," as they say! (Magic's original story "A Black Cat of My Own: Magic the Kitten" is also on this blog site.)
Beloved Cat, Tristan
Cat Book Author's Beloved Cat, TristanAs autumn and Halloween approached closer and closer (near the time I'd found and rescued black cat Magic the year before), I only missed and grieved for Magic more and more.  I was grateful for and appreciated my remaining dogs, but the gaping hole in my heart for Magic would just not heal; I missed having a cat so much.  I then decided I would try to adopt another cat again, an indoor cat this time who would be more content to remain safe at home.  That same week, I went to the Nevada Humane Society in Reno which is a no-kill shelter and saw over 200 cats!  Naturally, I couldn't help but look for a cat just like Magic (7 pounds), but they were all quite different in looks and personality.  Then in one room, I saw a familiar shade of black and shade of eyes: beautiful green.  Opening the steel enclosure, I reached in to pet and pick up a black panther beauty (named Oscar by the shelter) who unshyly leapt into my arms and snuggled into my neck with the loudest purr I'd ever heard.  I then tossed a toy on the floor, and he leapt down to happily play with that, too.  Eleven years old and twelve pounds(!), he was one of the oldest cats there.  I'd only planned to get a cat between two to six years-old so that he or she would be settled down and not as playful to avoid trouble.  However, I felt an immediate bond with him and decided to adopt Oscar that very night (September 21). 
Cat Book Author with Halloween Creatures (2012)I renamed Oscar with the Celtic name Tristan (and later added appropriate middle name Jinx!), and I am so happy I chose to 'love and love again' despite the risk of heartbreaking loss.  The humane society told me that Tristan had been found about two months earlier outdoors as a stray.  Happily, Tristan loves his new home and, while interested in what's happening outside, he does not try to get outside.  He must have lived indoors most of his life as he knows how to open cupboards, use his cat scratching post, hide in reusable grocery bags, and snuggle under the covers; despite his love of toys, he is fortunately leaving the Christmas tree and ornaments alone!  Tristan is also content to play inside and hang out in the bay windows and by the sliding glass doors where he can watch the birds in the trees, the desert cottontails that sneak in the yard, neighbor dogs Vivian and Thunder, and his own dogs Finn and Keira.  He has gotten out once and led me on a bit of a chase -- ending with his hiding under the deck -- but he came right in when I thought of shaking his favorite cat food. ("He knows which side his bread is buttered on!" Inside, not outside!)  
New Beginnings Make Happier Endings
Handsome cat Tristan Jinx (11 yrs. young!)It is now just two months since I have had Tristan, and I believe he is here to stay as long as his body will let him; many years, I hope, as his teeth are in great condition and he is very playful.  Therefore -- every day that I am lucky enough to have him -- I will love him as part of the great chain of life that makes Planet Earth such a special place, and then love the next one whose path serendipitously crosses mine.  Both my parents and I recommend rescuing pets whenever possible at local shelters because they have always been such great treasures found that we would never want to part with.

Petfinder.com features shelter animals and is a great place to begin one's search (and to also support with donations or gift shopping when one is able).  I even travelled to Texas to adopt my two very special dogs, Finnan and Keira, whom I found on that site, and they are priceless to me! One picture is all it takes sometimes for your heart to be moved into immediate action.
Cat Book Author's Top Ten Site
Cat Book Author's Top Ten Site

Five Tips for Raising Humane Kids

Be Kind to Animals awareness week is May 9-16 this year (2012) but it can be celebrated EVERY week, and the ASPCA has put out a fun activity guide that encourages making bonds with animals and includes Five Tips for Raising Humane Children.  The awareness week began in 1915 and was inspired by Dr. William O’Stillman, leader of the American Humane Association teaching humane education.
One of the tips is helping children post their acts of animal kindness on the "Kindness Counts" site created by the Sprout children's TV channel.  You can also help Sprout reach their goal of having 1 million acts of kindness by children (toward animals or any person) posted to their site.
Studies show that kids who are cruel to animals are more likely to become even more abusive to people and animals throughout their lives.  If you see any child hurting animals with relish (even small ones), nip that behavior in the bud early - and frequently - by stopping them, showing them your extreme disapproval, and explaining that cruelty can not be tolerated toward living creatures.  Even ants contribute to the health of our environment -- although they may not belong in the house and may have to be humanely dealt with (salt and cinnamon deters them while pesticide residues are often harmful to people, children and pets). If needed, here are more ant deterrents from Green Living Tips.
In addition, your protection of animals large and small will also show children that they deserve protection as well if anyone should ever try to hurt them!  Cruelty is never funny or something to enjoy.
Please share my blog post and this important ASPCA guide with your family and friends!

Mortal Enemy, Immortal Friend

Coming soon is my new poem "Mortal Enemy, Immortal Friend" for cat lovers that reveals the former dark side of our relationship with them!  Per my penchant for happy endings, it will end on a positive note.  I will be using the alternating rhyme scheme of an Elizabethan sonnet of 14 lines.
Update 01/15/13:
My new poem is now released for everyone to read on my website.  The final title is "Beloved Cat: Once Mortal Enemy, Now Immortal Friend" (click to read). I hope people like it!

My new poem "Spark" for idealists and humanists

While I admire many ethics in world religions and went to Christian churches as a child,
I am foremost a humanist.  I recently wrote a ten verse (aka stanza) poem titled "Spark" for idealists and humanists, and I hope it will be well received.  
Since childhood, I have found contentment in the great sense of humanity that shines throughout the works of William Shakespeare, so I decided to write my poem in the iambic pentameter metrical form that he often used.  Iambic pentameter poetry is pleasant to hear and recite, and I chose an "aabb" rhyme scheme for each verse.  Poetry is very enjoyable to write because it is creative and challenging, and I encourage everyone to try it.
Webster's Dictionary defines humanism as "1. A philosophy or attitude centered chiefly on the values, interests, and potential of human beings.  2. The shift to secular concerns that resulted from the study of Greek and Roman classics during the Renaissance."
It's very true that humanity's continuing departure from supernatural ideas has led to a greater sense of self-awareness and responsibility in our natural world of reality.  Now that we have come so much closer to that essential self-awareness, I hope we will use it to build better global societies that aim to better celebrate and enhance each human life on Earth.
I've published the poem on Amazon for 99 cents. The poem's first verse/stanza of ten is:
Oh Spark, made from your
  father’s guiding force
And, aye, your mother’s most
  fertile life source,
Of magic ‘lixir, you light up
  the Earth
Whenever you display love,
  peace and mirth.
To read the next nine verses, you can download the poem below; please kindly give it a review if you like it.  Thank you!

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