Saturday, December 31, 2022

Cat ate 38 hair ties and survived

NEWS AND COMMENT: As reported in The State, a cat was abandoned with other cats by their owner when they moved away. And this particular cat was very ill. She was brought to an animal shelter run by the Charleston Animal Society. It is located about 9 miles north-west of Charleston and is a No-kill shelter with a hospital which cares for around 20,000 animals annually.


Sick cat after operation to remove 38 hair ties from her stomach
Sick cat after operation to remove 38 hair ties from her stomach. Image: Charleston Animal Society from video (screenshot).

This cat was therefore fortunate to end up at this shelter where she stopped eating. They x-rayed her and found a massive blockage in her stomach. Her stomach was completely full of ties. A domestic cat's stomach is quite small at about the size of a ping pong ball I am told. How do you get 38 hair ties inside a stomach that size!? It must stretch a lot.

The blockage constituted 38 hair ties which she had obviously eaten as if they were edible foods when in the ownership of the people who abandoned her.

The veterinarian who did the operation was very surprised to see that number of hair ties in her stomach. The associate director of veterinary care at the Charleston Animal Society, Leigh Jamison, said: 

"I've never seen anything like that."
The animal hospital was so taken aback by the finding that they took time to photograph the ties and here they are below.

The 38 hair ties removed from the cat's stomach
The 38 hair ties removed from the cat's stomach. Photo: Charleston Animal Society Charleston Animal Society

Fortunately, her intestine is were not damaged but the obstruction to her digestive tract caused fat to build up in her liver which resulted in a major health issue. She is currently being fed through a feeding tube.

They are keeping up her electrolytes to ensure that they are in balance and she is improving but she is not out of the woods yet, they report.

Comment: one doesn't want to criticise but for a cat owner to allow their cat to eat 38 hair ties and then abandon them is beyond careless. It is callous and cruel. The woman (presumed woman but it might have been a man) must have noticed her hair ties going missing. She must have seen her cat playing with the ties and eating them but did nothing about it.

And of course, it does bring to mind the dangers of hair ties and objects like them. Cats like to play with small, elastic objects. They are an ideal size as a cat toy. And as cat play is play-hunting, the end result is going to be eating the object if possible. And it is possible for a domestic cat eat a hair tie but of course they remain undigested in the stomach.

The obvious moral to the story is that a cat owner who uses her ties should make sure that they are not left lying around the floor or in any other place which is accessible to their cat. Obvious stuff. Nothing extraordinary in that statement (and it has been said a million times before) but if - as this person was - the owner is careless and doesn't care about the health and welfare of a cat you can end up killing your cat.

It seems purely fortuitous that this cat ended up at a cat shelter where there was an animal hospital attached. The story might well have ended completely differently and tragically but for that simple fact.

Here is a video which might or might not run! It may stop working. But if not great.

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Mother dresses as giant cat at school board meeting during bizarre ‘anti-woke’ protest

A woman at a school meeting makes a point about gender self-identification while wearing a cat costume. She wore the cat costume to make the point that nobody would say that she is a cat just because she wears a cat costume.

There is a video of her at the end of the article.

She was criticising a member of the school board who self identifies as a woman despite being a biological man. The man wears his deceased wife's clothes and lipstick and grows his hair a little bit longer than normal.

I don't think she's criticising the fact he wears his ex-wife's clothes as you can't criticise it but she's criticising the fact that he is on the school board and making decisions about the children while believing that people can self-identify on their gender.

Woman wears a cat costume to make her point about gender self-identification
Woman wears a cat costume to make her point about gender self-identification. Screenshot.

This is an enormously polarising topic. It is a very current topic. In the UK, it brings to mind Nicola Sturgeon, the first Minister of Scotland, bringing into law self-identification on gender.

She wants Scottish citizens to be able to self identify on gender which may produce a problem in terms of Scotland's relationship with England where people can't self identify.

Self-identification is part of the woke movement. And the woke movement itself is polarising. Many people agree with it and support it while others react against it.

My personal opinion is that the woke movement in general is a good idea because it supports equality. It supports people who are currently on the fringe of society when they should be in the mainstream. They should not be outsiders and regarded as unusual et cetera just because they don't have mainstream ideas or they have sexual orientation issues.

People should be sensitive towards people who question their sexual orientation. So personally I'm sensitive to the woke movement. But it can go to far.

However, I don't think it's a good idea to self-identify on gender. Especially with respect to kids. It is very easy for children to learn thoughts which are unhealthy for them. They might think that they are in the wrong body but it might be a temporary phase in their life. They are impressionable.

I believe that if society accepted more readily and more openly LGBTQ people as normal mainstream people then there will be no need for them to take steps to make a statement about themselves. They would just be part of society rather than feeling as if they are outside of mainstream society.

Bring them into mainstream society and I think this woke movement on gender self-identification would go away. There wouldn't be a need for it.

But that's a personal thought and my opinion. I don't want to rub anybody up the wrong way so if people disagree with me I accept it. But let's just say I'm sensitive towards people who want to self-identify as the opposite sex and I think that need comes about because of society's attitude towards them.

The news story

I like briefly to touch on the new story. The woman in the story and in the video is a Phoenix mother. Her speech went viral as she showed up to a local school board meeting dressed as a cat as mentioned.

The video was presented on the Lindsey Graham "Patriot Barbie" podcast. As you can see she was voicing her concerns about the "confusing message a member of the school board, who identifies as transgender, was sending to elementary-age children" according to the FOX NEWS report.

The woman states:
"This was a local school in my neighbourhood where there was a member of the school board whose name is Paul Bixler. He’s a man, he’s very clearly a man. The only thing he does to identify as a female is put lipstick on. He grew his hair out a little bit, and he wears his deceased wife’s clothing to school, to sporting events, to school events to fundraisers, school events in front of the children."
The man demands being identified in one of two ways either as Paul which is a man's name or Ms Bixler. And the woman states that he has a gender identity crisis. She adds that:
"Not only does he appear in front of the children and insist that the children define him as a woman, but he sits on the board and he’s making decisions for these children."

It seems that she wants him off the school board as he might affect some students into questioning their gender when it might be better if they did not. 

Do cats understand kisses?

For HUMANS kissing is a common way to express affection or greet someone in many cultures around the world. However, in some cultures, kissing was not a regular practice before European colonization. 

In these cultures, kissing was introduced by Europeans and did not have the same significance as it does in other cultures. Kissing can be used to express a wide range of emotions, including love, gratitude, compassion, sympathy, joy, and sorrow.
Your cat understands your kiss as an act of allogrooming from another cat. - MikeB
Your cat understands your kiss as an act of allogrooming from another cat
Your cat understands your kiss as an act of allogrooming from another cat. Image: MikeB

It is an intimate exchange. It is a practice that was created by humans for humans. We don't know the origin. Anyway it is irrelevant. This is about humans.

When we kiss our cat they don't understand the action as a kiss per se. You've probably kissed your cat before during moments when there is emotional warmth between you. Your cat will have learned that the act of kissing is a sign of affection, a bit like stroking their head. 

Cats don't understand kisses per se in the way humans do as a deeply intimate action. But they understand the affection attached to it provided there is affection attached to it! And it has been done often. This teaches your cat what it means.

That's about it on cats understanding human kisses. Except for this afterthought:

Allogrooming versus kissing

Petting your cat and stroking him or her is very close to the human kiss from the cat's standpoint. They interpret is as their mother or a feline associate (friend) grooming them. When a cat grooms another cat (allogrooming) cats understand this as a physical sign of affection. It is bonding.
Allogrooming is almost a feline version of the human kiss. - MikeB
Cat allogrooming
Cat allogrooming. A feline version of the human kiss?! Image in the public domain.

Allogrooming means licking another cat. The tongue is involved as it is in French kissing! You can see the association.

The cat may even understand the human kiss on their head as a allogrooming from another cat. If that was the case, once again they'd regard it as a friendly act which is very similar to a peck on the cheek from a dear friend.

There is a big overlap here between cat allogrooming and human kisses 😎. 

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