Kitteh contest: another entry

Although only three cats won prizes, every cat is a winner.  Courtesy of poster “Ein Sophistry”, heeeeeere’s Phoenix:

Meet Phoenix: Lilliputian of head, Brobdingnagian of belly, epic of tail. The contorted resting position and vacant expression seen here are entirely typical of this…eccentric feline (even without the reflection of the camera flash, his eyes always engender the impression—which his behavior seldom fails to reinforce—that there’s not a whole lot going on upstairs). We adopted him as a young kitten, tracking him down just a few weeks after we’d taken in his mother. We were hoping for a happy renewal of the parent-offspring bond, but they instead immediately set about vigorously trying to kill each other. The vet ultimately confessed that Phoenix was the only member of his mother’s litter she hadn’t eaten. Before he came into our care, he’d contracted a sinus infection, which left him with a permanently runny nose. Now, he sniffles and snuffles constantly, and snorts when he gets excited. This seems to have impaired his olfactory and gustatory senses as well, as he’ll eat anything he can fit into his mouth. He once swallowed a rubber door stopper, which had to be surgically removed to the tune of about $3,600 USD. Don’t let his innocuous appearance fool you; he’s given to run-by ankle bites and random attacks from above (though, fortunately, the sniffling tends to telegraph his strikes). He’s a handful to be sure, but he’s brought a great deal of fun into our lives. He’s one vereh speshul kitteh!

31 Comments

  1. still learning
    Posted December 21, 2010 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    LOL! What a character!

  2. MadScientist
    Posted December 21, 2010 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    Contortionist kitty. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a cat in that position.

    • Luh
      Posted December 23, 2010 at 5:45 am | Permalink

      You should see my ferrets, they appear to fold in half sometimes.

  3. Helen Wise
    Posted December 21, 2010 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    Completely wonderful story.

  4. Dominic
    Posted December 21, 2010 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    That’s a lot of dollars worth of cat. Isn’t it cheaper if you have pet insurance or are the premiums prohibitive?

    • daveau
      Posted December 21, 2010 at 11:52 am | Permalink

      Pet insurance is almost a complete scam. They will only cover healthy young cats up to 6 or 7 years. And, if you cat actually gets sick, that illness is dropped from the policy at renewal time. The only time pet insurance ever pays for itself is if your cat gets sick right after renewal. It might have been useful for Phoenix’s surgery or if your pet gets hit by a car or something, but it’s useless for prolonged care.

      • Posted December 21, 2010 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

        Actually, you couldn’t be more worng.

        At least, not as far as Pets Best is concerned.

        Tamar was 14 when I adopted her from a college girlfriend’s mother. The next business day, I enrolled her with Pets Best.

        Some months later, she developed a bladder infection. Bloodwork done as part of the diagnosis revealed that she was in the early stages of kidney failure.

        Pets Best paid 80% of the medical expenses for treatment over the next four years, including cremation this past summer. They never once gave me any trouble, they never questioned anything, they never raised my rates.

        All they did was give me the peace of mind to know that I could unhesitatingly give my sweetheart the best possible life I could.

        Baihu has promised me that he’ll do his best to stay in perfect shape for as long as he possibly can so that we can let Pets Best make enough of a profit off of him to cover the financial beating they took for Tamar.

        I can’t express how thankful I am to Pets Best (and, of course, to Dr. Carmen Bastek of University Animal Hospital) for all they did for Tamar.

        Cheers,

        b&

        • daveau
          Posted December 21, 2010 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

          We researched around 8 years ago. No one would take a 5 year old cat with asthma. I don’t recall Best Pets.

          We can afford to pay for all checkups, meds and procedures out of pocket, so no, we don’t actually need the insurance, it just would have paid for itself with Bryxie.

          Point taken, however, that if you can’t afford to take proper care of your pet, you shouldn’t have one.

          • Posted December 21, 2010 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

            As I understand, the pet health insurance industry went through radical reforms a number of years ago. Your experience was probably typical for the time, but things have changed very much since then, and for the better.

            Check out at least Pets Best, and see what your own vet has to say about them and their competitors.

            As with people, there are exclusions for pre-existing conditions. If you’ve got a 13-year-old cat who’s had asthma for at least the past 8 years, you might be stuck paying for the asthma out of pocket. But it might not be long before that cat develops kidney failure — it’s increasingly common in teenaged cats — and (good) insurance would more than pay for itself in such a case.

            Cheers,

            b&

            • daveau
              Posted December 21, 2010 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

              After taking a look at Pets Best, I concede that you’re probably right; I may be living in the past on that. Pet insurance was like property insurance, not medical insurance, and could be cancelled at any time for any reason, although that may just have been the State of Illinois.

              We have a new kitteh coming from Bryxie’s breeder, and I will look into it again for him. Thank you for the tip.

              • Posted December 22, 2010 at 7:38 am | Permalink

                You’re welcome. You can repay me…by supplying more details about the new kitteh!

                Cheers,

                b&

        • Dominic
          Posted December 22, 2010 at 8:43 am | Permalink

          A good age for a cat though. A friend brought two cats over from Malta when she moved to London. Neither one is in the best health but they keep plugging on defying the years. Another friend in Australia had a farm cat that got feline AIDS & lived with a permanent open wound on her side. She kept it clean by frequently licking it, poor thing.

        • Luh
          Posted December 23, 2010 at 5:54 am | Permalink

          Pet Plan in the UK is a great provider too. They do cover older animals, though the premium is higher for obvious reasons. They also do lifetime policies, so illnesses are covered for life, and not for 12 months or until renewal like some policies(watch out for those ones!). You won’t find a company who will insure for existing conditions, unfortunately. They also can pay vets directly, if you’re in a position like us and can’t afford to make sudden large bills on your budget, even knowing the company will reimburse you, it’s incredibly handy. I’ve worked as a vet nurse so I know how crazy bills can get. A serious RTA requiring surgery can get to 3 grand in a few days easily.

          We pay about 45pm for a 7 year old german shepherd, and that covers 12k per illness per year – for life.

          Our previous dog was diagnosed with Cushings at the age of 8, and lived with medication until she was 7. The meds at the time cost around 100 a month, the insurance paid out for all of it until she died. We worked out that the company actually paid us back what we had previously paid out in premiums – and more, and that was on the meds alone, not including all the blood tests she had to monitor her condition. Good times C:

          • Luh
            Posted December 23, 2010 at 5:56 am | Permalink

            That should read that our dog with cushings lived to 17* Woops!

    • Posted December 21, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

      On the subject of value and premiums…Pets Best covers regular checkups, vaccines, dental cleanings, and that sort of thing. And the annual premiums aren’t that much more than the amount you should be spending on such things, anyway.

      Think of the premiums as budgeting for routine care, with a nominal amount added on for catastrophic insurance.

      If you can’t afford health insurance for the animals you care for, then you can’t afford to care for them in the first place.

      Cheers,

      b&

      • HP
        Posted December 23, 2010 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

        My kinsfolk and I in complete accord! PetsBest number 1 for cat, dog, or etc. assurance! We are having now,You go to.

        • HP
          Posted December 23, 2010 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

          Ooh, I just realized I posted my “double-reverse secret anti-Turing test” comment under my real name. It was a joke!

          I’m getting banned, aren’t I?

          • whyevolutionistrue
            Posted December 23, 2010 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

            No.

            • Diane G.
              Posted December 24, 2010 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

              Literally LOL!

  5. Posted December 21, 2010 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    That contortion just cracks me up. His spine must be made of silly putty.

    • Diane G.
      Posted December 24, 2010 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

      Absolutely! I’ve never seen anything like that!

      Super cat, & super write-up, too.

  6. daveau
    Posted December 21, 2010 at 11:38 am | Permalink

    It looks like your kitteh is broken. Hail Phoenix!

  7. sasqwatch
    Posted December 21, 2010 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    Cirque du Kitteh

  8. Posted December 21, 2010 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Broken Kitteh Is Broken!

    • Posted December 21, 2010 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

      Nah– cats can spin all the way around. Just like Barbie…

  9. Posted December 21, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

    If Phoenix were a member of any other species, I’d take one look at that photo and be certain that he’s just come to a tragic, painful, and violent end.

    Knowing he’s a cat…it’s obvious that he’s just laid back, relaxed, chillin’ out, and gettin’ comfy. His masters are demonstrably performing their tasks adequately — which is high praise, indeed.

    Cheers,

    b&

  10. Reginald Selkirk
    Posted December 21, 2010 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    Dowsing expert accuses cats of untruthfulness

    • daveau
      Posted December 21, 2010 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

      Wow! The rest of that article is completely reasonable. How could he be so wrong about cats?

  11. Posted December 21, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    Beautiful kitteh!

  12. Michael
    Posted December 21, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    Cyborg kitteh. Zee eyes!

    Kitteh: “All your stairs are belong to us!”

  13. Posted December 21, 2010 at 10:38 pm | Permalink

    What a *gorgeous* tail! And plenty of long hair, I see, in various colors to coordinate with whatever you’re wearing… ;-))


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