New Years Resolutions for Pets

KarmaSerenSandwichIt’s almost 2015, wow. A new year is a time for reflection on the past, and resolutions for the future. This year has been incredibly rewarding on the pet-writing front. I’ve published three new nonfiction pet books including COMPLETE PUPPY CARE and two short-tips guides, the sequel to my dog-viewpoint thriller HIDE AND SEEK, and produced/directed/wrote with my partner Frank Steele the show STRAYS, THE MUSICAL.

My furry crew has increased this year, too, with the addition of Karma-Kat. They tell me it’s a good time to take stock of the past year from a pets’-eye-view, too, and the year to come.

The Magical-dawg romped through the year and had only one “issue” with licking his paws nekkid. Thank goodness, the veterinarian’s prescription worked even better than expected and that has resolved. Magic is now eight but he shows little sign of slowing down.

Seren-kitty has reached the grand age of 17 and noticeably slowed down. This year she continued having problems with schnorkles. She sleeps more, her black mask has turned nearly solid gray, but the arrival of Karma gave her new energy and zest for life—first, staying out of his reach, and then making sure he knows she’s the boss. I pray that the years will touch me as lightly as they have my little Siamese wannabe.

Karma has grown from a lanky adolescent kitten into a hefty man-kat eager for a game of tag, chase and treats. He’s the delight of Magic, makes Seren grumpy, and keeps us humans laughing.
So here are New Year’s Resolutions from Magic, Seren and Karma with commentary by Amy.

MagicToyMagic: “I will train my humans to spend more time playing.”

Amy: He insists on fetch. All the time. I mean ALL the time! both inside the house and out. So I resolve to keep breakables out of tossed-ball-range, and use only the soft stuffed toys to cut down on household damage.

Karma: “I will train my humans to leave open the pantry door so I can help myself.”

Amy: He’s actually learned to open the pantry door himself, where he chews through packaging to spill dog food et al across the floor where Karma can taste. So I resolve to Karma-proof cupboards and offer only cat-healthy treats to (ahem) trim down his waistline.

Seren: “I will stand on table tops, hassocks and Amy’s lap and cry and yowl to get the (spit) Karma-Kat in trouble.”

Amy: She’s used to being the “only” cat and now must compete for our attention. I resolve to keep Karma and Magic otherwise engaged so that Seren can enjoy her teasing perch antics for as long as she continues to want to harass the other pets.

Magic: “I will kill all squeakers and chew sticky-out wrong parts on toys.”

Amy: He amputates teddy-bear ears, and SQUEEEEEKS toys forever to drive us crazy. I resolve to find a Magic-proof squeaky stuffed toy—been looking for years now.

Karma: “I will stalk and tease and pounce at Magic so he chases me—and makes the humans yell, what fun!”

Amy: Karma takes great delight in teasing Magic and getting him into trouble. I resolve to play interactive chase games with Karma each day to give him the exercise, attention and fun he craves and deserves.

Magic: “I will train Amy to play with the Frisbees—all 12 of them—ALL THE TIME!”

Amy: Magic obsessed over the Frisbees. He’s learned to catch and retrieve them, if Amy can throw them correctly. And yes, he’ll stack and carry as many as I throw. I resolve to keep a supply of fresh Frisbees handy for the times Magic loses them (or they’re stolen by coyotes).

Seren: “I will sleep more, hiss less. Except around the *spit* other cat.”

Amy: Seren’s blue bed rests on the dining room table under a stained glass lamp shade. Karma likes the bed, too, but it’s too small for him and he squashes Seren when he tries to climb inside, too. I resolve to invest a larger cat bed so Seren and Karma can maybe-sorta-kinda share.

Magic: “I will go for a ride forever!”

Amy: Magic continues his love affair with the Magic-Mobile. I resolve to give Magic a car ride at least every other day, pending good weather.

Seren: “I will train Amy there’s more to nine lives than paw-tapping and staring at a boxy computer-thing. Like catnip. And whisker-kisses.”

Karma: “I will train Amy that playing with cats is more fun than anything else.”

Magic: “I will train Amy that naps together are a good thing. So are tummy rubs.”

Amy: I resolve to listen to my furry wonders. What about you?

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered–post in the comments. Be sure to visit my PetHealthyStore for paw-some products for your furry wonders! Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter. Stay up to date with the latest book give aways, kewl product offers, and appearances related to my  THRILLERS WITH BITE!

Why Tabby Wears An M–A Christmas #Cats Story

Maine coon, 1 year old, standing in front of white backgroundIt’s become a tradition on the blog (and in my PETiQuette newspaper column) to share one of my favorite Christmas stories. This touching legend, included in Complete Kitten Care, tells the story of a simple Tabby cat, and her gift on the very first Christmas day to a special mother and child. Enjoy!

Please be safe if you’re traveling. May your holidays be blessed.

And…here’s a video wish just for you and your furry family, too.

Why Tabby Wears An M

There was no snow that night in Bethlehem. Instead, the small cat watched a star-spangled sky from her perch in the window of a stable. She liked the stable, for it was a warm safe place to raise her furry babies, and the innkeeper sometimes left scraps out for her to nibble. Tabby wasn’t particularly distinctive, and most humans didn’t look at her twice. After all, her short gray/black fur was quite common. But Tabby’s striped coat hid a heart bigger than cats twice her size.

This night, though, Tabby was out of sorts, for she’d not been able to hunt and catch dinner. Travelers had poured into town for days, so noisy they disturbed decent cat-folks’ rest. Why, they’d even invaded Tabby‟s quiet stable, a place she had before shared only with other furry creatures. Tabby hadn’t minded the human couple—they were calmer than most. She’d left that morning for her usual rounds, but when she returned, the stable was packed with people.

From her perch on the window, Tabby watched the last of the strangers leave. She slipped from the window, and padded silently inside—and froze!

“Meewwww, meewww, meewww,” cried a tiny voice.

A kitten? Tabby’s ears turn this way and that to find the sound of the kitten’s voice. It came from the manger, the very place Tabby often made her own bed. A woman knelt beside the manger, intent on the small mewling that arose from within. Tabby was drawn by the kittenish sound, though she knew her own furry babies were grown to cat-hood. She tiptoed forward very slowly, and passed by a wooly burro, a warm cow, and all the other animals.

The woman looked up, and saw the striped cat. “Oh, little cat,” she murmured, “my baby cannot sleep, and nothing calms him this night.” She sighed, and turned back to the manger. “How grateful would I be to anyone able to bring him sweet dreams.”

And, as Tabby watched, each stable animal stepped forward in turn and tried to soothe the woman’s baby. But the kittenish sounds continued, and finally Tabby could contain herself no longer.

Quickly, she washed herself—paws, face, behind the ears, to the very tip of her tail (so as not to offend the child’s mother)—and then shyly stepped forward. She leaped gracefully to the manger, and stared into the face of the most beautiful baby (human or kitten!) she’d ever seen. He cooed and smiled, waving his tiny hands at Tabby, and she very carefully drew in her claws and settled beside him. Forgotten was her empty tummy; she could only hear her heart calling out to this sweet human-kitten.

And Tabby began to purr.

The wondrous cat-song filled the stable with overwhelming emotion. The animals listened with awe, and the child’s mother smiled as her baby quietly went to sleep.

The child’s mother placed her hand gently on the purring Tabby’s forehead. “Blessings upon you, Tabby-cat, for this sweet gift given to me and my child,” she said. And where she’d touched Tabby’s brow, there appeared an M—the sign of the Madonna’s benediction.

From that day forward, all proper tabby cats are honored with an M on their brow for the great service they performed that first Christmas night. And Christmas nights often find Tabby cats staring into the night, purring as they recall a very special child their ancestor once sang to sleep.

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Do you have a new kitten and need answers? Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, listen to the weekly radio show, check out weekly FREE PUPPY CARE newsletter, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter. Stay up to date with the latest book give aways and appearances related to my  THRILLERS WITH BITE!

#Pets Authors Panel: We Did It, So Can You!

Did you miss the Google Hangout? Wanna learn about WRITING LIKE CATS AND DOGS? Here’s Yvonne DiVita, Doc Halligan, Lisa Erspamer and myself talking about publishing, how we wrote our books, and other writer-icity experiences! Enjoy!

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered–post in the comments. Be sure to visit my PetHealthyStore for paw-some products for your furry wonders! Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter. Stay up to date with the latest book give aways, kewl product offers, and appearances related to my  THRILLERS WITH BITE!

Dog-centric & Cat-astic Online Pet Shopping!

Did you know that a BUNCH of y’all shop online for your pets? Scroll down to see a very kewl infographic with some stats. Meanwhile, I wanted to share with you some of my new “finds” and recommendations for the fur-kids (and pet-loving peeps) in your life! Several of these can be found at my new home-away-from-home, and some even offer some free trials. How kewl is that?

For the next THREE DAYS (Weds, Thurs, Friday) these two books are FREE on Kindle, just in time for helping the pets get along with visiting grandkids. *s*

DogHatesDate CatHatesDate

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FountainAdvert

 

 

 

My Karma-Kat and Seren-Kitty are LOVING this fountain! And there’s still time to use the code to get it at a deep discount for the furry wonders and pet lovers in your life. For a full review and details, just click here!

 

 

KarmaLitterBox2Karma and Seren are both liking the Perfect Litter, a natural light weight product that’s also environmentally friendly– AND has a color-code change if the urine pH goes to high. The company will even give you a free one-month’s supply to try it out. For my review and more info click here, and for  the trial offer you can click here.

Cat-Litter-MatOh my CATS! how I wish that I’d had this litter mat years ago! It’s the Doggone Smart Cat Litter Mat and it catches/contains tracked litter better than anything I’ve ever seen. My review and details are here.

SwiPets_sm2Are you faced with a big-hairy-deal? especially at the holidays, guests don’t always consider fur to be a condiment like us pet-folks do, LOL! The SwiPets glove is a handy way to brush off the fuzz, and a great stocking stuffer for pet lovers. I keep one in my car, too. My review and details are o this page.

BarkGenie

Do you have issues with dogs barking, or cats wrangling? I’ve always been a bit suspicious of those “push button” answers but the Bark Genie actually does work in many cases. It’s an ultrasonic tone that interrupts the behavior. This may be the perfect answer for keeping pesky pets away from dangerous holiday decor. Check out more details at this link.

 

 

catleash DogLeash

I was sent free leashes to review from Lavian, and they’re spectacular. Soft, supple, made to last–a bit pricy, but hey! our pets are worth it! Click the pictures for a small dog/cat leash in red, or the large dog leash in black.

K9_DogTreats_lgNo guilt K-9 Fat Free Treats–these are Magical-Dawg’s new favorite and I don’t have to watch his waistline! Check out details and my review here.

Kaviar Equal time for the cats! Kitty Kaviar makes Seren’s purr rumble! Low fat and a great appetite stimulant for reluctant eaters. Learn more here.

NekoBirbug TeleRodPlaytime for the cats! Karma has a new favorite toy in the Birbug from Neko Flies. These make him LEAP and run with joy! The Telescoping Rod means you can extend your interactive reach for shy kitties that want some distance, or bring it near to you. Click the pictures to learn more.

And…I promised some statistics, so check ‘em out below, Furry fantastic, eh?

BlogPaws Holiday Pet Blogger Influence and Christmas Gift Spending

Cat Behavior & Dog Training Gift Books for Parents and Lovers

MERRY CAT-MAS & HAPPY HOWL-IDAYS! This time of year means visitors of all ages and your pets may object to these INTERLOPERS. These tips can help–and the books are FREE today (Weds), Thursday & Friday! Please share with anyone you think could use the help!

My Cat Hates my Date: Teach Cats to Accept Babies, Toddlers & Lovers

My Dog Hates my Date: Teach Dogs to Accept Babies, Toddlers & Lovers

CatHatesDateDogHatesDateI love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered–post in the comments. Be sure to visit my PetHealthyStore for paw-some products for your furry wonders! Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter. Stay up to date with the latest book give aways, kewl product offers, and appearances related to my  THRILLERS WITH BITE!