Bissell Crosswave Review

Bissell came out with a new one! In this post, I will be reviewing the older model. And will compare the two using their site for reference.

Let me begin by saying how much I love my Bissell! It really is a game changer. You can watch the review here on youtube, if you don’t want to watch it, please read on.

What this machine does is it vacuums and washes your floor at the same time! If you are tired of being on your hands and knees scrubbing your floors, if you have kids, pets, a lot of foot traffic, just want clean floors….this is for YOU! It’s lightweight and easy to use and easy to clean. Buy it! I’m seriously in love with this machine. It has saved me so much time and time is something you can’t get back! It has helped my back, as in it got me up off the floor. I can now have clean floors without the stress on my back. Did I mention how much I love this?!

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Here it is in all its glory!

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Pretty!

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Easy push button for different surfaces.

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This button releases clean water.

 

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Only a few parts. Makes things nice and easy!

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All parts easy to put on and take out of machine.

This Crosswave vacuums and washes at the same time, saving me so much time and not to mention energy. (I know i’ve already said it! I’m just so excited about this machine!) It used to take me hours to wash my entire house floors. As the years went by, I’d have to break up my home into sections because it was getting difficult to scrub and clean for so long on my hands and knees. I’d been trying to find a better way. I tried many “tools”, mop, swifter, other types of things attached to a pole and nothing would clean the way I would, using my own hands. There had to be a better way and gosh did I find it! I know this sounds like a bad commercial, but seriously, this machine has given me time back not to mention I’m not exhausted from cleaning. My back thanks me. (I know I’m repeating myself! Haha)

Now if you have the “green” Crosswave; the original or if you have the new “purple” one; the Crosswave Pet Pro, you can’t go wrong. I haven’t used the Pet Pro yet and I no doubt will pick one up so I can show you the difference. In the meantime, from all that I’ve read, the difference that I can find are the bristles on the roller for the Pet Pro might be a smidge longer (could be because mine is worn) and on the Pet Pro there is a “pet hair” strainer. Both new features will fit on the older model and can be purchased through them! Way to go Bissell. Thank you for making something that can enhance the old model without having to purchase a whole new machine.

So this “fur/debris” catcher fits inside the container that catches all the dirty water. It’s like a strainer so you can easily pull out the debris and toss it in the trash and the dirty water you can dump down sink or flush down the toilet. I wouldn’t normally buy this as I don’t find taking out the clumps of hair by hand an issue, however I will, so I can review it for you at a later date.

The (maybe) longer bristles on the “new” roller is something I am very interested in, so I do see myself purchasing that even if I wasn’t reviewing it (I wouldn’t mind a new brush anyway). They also have two other rollers; one for wood floors and one for rugs. I’m going to definitely buy the multi surface roller and will probably succumb to the wood floor and rug roller attachments too, just so I can see how well they work. FYI, the multi surface roller that I have been using works perfectly for all the surfaces that I’ve used it on.

Again, kudos to Bissell for making new attachments that fit the older model. I wish the Pet Pro was the same color as the original Crosswave. I’m not fond of that purple on a machine I use so constantly it is like a piece of furniture in my house! Hahaha. Other than the color, I am a fan! Insert cheering here* woohoo!

You can check out more details on Bissell’s site here!

So, should you buy this? For me it was a no brainer. I’ve been using this crosswave going on two years. I think in the video I said I use it 2-3 times a week. I probably use it 3-4 times on average. Some weeks I’ve used it daily. Basically this machine gets used! A lot! And still running like a champion.

Got me up off my knees! Which…

Eased back tension.

Gave me back time! From the moment my eyes open, I’m on my feet doing something. The Crosswave saved me time! Lots of time! Time you can’t get back!

Two in one; vacuums and washes at the same time.

Eliminate multiple “tools”. This replaces many.

Easy to use. Maneuverability and size of this machine make it easy to move about my home.

Easy to clean. Simple and easy to clean the machine when done using.

Not a big cumbersome machine. Storing it in a small space is very doable.

Makes cleaning fun! Not as fun as eating chocolate cake or hiking with my favorite peeps, though I save time using it so I can have fun eating said cake and go hiking!

If you are teetering on if you should buy this, know that Bissell is donating up to $1,000,000 a year to BISSELL® Pet Foundation™3. That’s pretty awesome to me!

Q and A

How much can you clean before having to dump the tank? On the Bissell site, it says, “700 sq feet”. Just so you all know, dumping out the container isn’t a big deal. Seriously simple and easy and fast.

What kind of surfaces can you use the Crosswave on? On the Bissell site, it says, “Sealed wood, sealed laminate, tile, and linoleum as well as area rugs!” On my video I say I even use it on my carpeted stairs and in the garage. I would also use it on a room that had carpet, but I’m not telling you to do that! 😉

Do you need to vacuum first? I vacuum sometimes before I use the Crosswave, but it isn’t necessary. I have a lot of furry four-legged family members. I vacuum anywhere from 2-4 times a day and I Crosswave a lot during the week.

Thank you sooooo much for popping in here At-Kokos-Place! If you have this machine, I’d love to hear your thoughts and if you have any more questions, please mention them in the comment section and I will get back to you as soon as I can.

Have a happy day and happy cleaning!

Hugs and Peace,

Koko

If you know someone that this post would benefit, please share/follow. I so appreciate you and thank you in advance! 

 

 

 

 

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Repurposing An Old Cat Tree

 

IMG_2516Breathing new life into something old…My first instinct is how can I fix it. Tossing stuff out and buying new is always easier, but not always easier on the wallet, and besides that, I don’t always find the “new” better than what I already have. They just don’t make things like they used to. All too often I find that statement is so true. Though in this case, my cat tree is nothing special and yes, you can find this style and probably better, but my cats like it and that’s most important. So I’m going to spiffy this one up.

Before I show you what I did, remember when I made a cat tree/bed out of a wooden spool? You can see it here… That was when I found out how much they really liked to scratch on sisal. Which is why I chose to use sisal to freshen up this tree instead of wrap more carpet around it. I may do carpet again another time, but I have a few rolls of sisal, so sisal it is! Here’s what I did…

Supplies:

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one old cat tree

sisal rope

hot glue gun

glue sticks

scissors

vacuum

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Vacuum the tree really well. I usually get to it about once a week to help keep the hair down in the house. If I didn’t vacuum the house a few times a day, it would look like I live in a “hair” house! Ack!!!!

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Cut/trim off any strings or carpet strands. See the hair? That’s because I had helpers while trimming, hence the need to vacuum a lot! Good thing I can vacuum the cats too. I put on the brush attachment and go at them. They actually like it! 🙂

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I really let this tree go! You know, “Oh I will get to it later?”…

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After trimming loose parts, I hot glued down carpet parts that have loosened. (That’s Evan the dog. He is one of the sweetest pups I’ve had the privilege to have in my life. He’s got the most unique fur. I will feature him in a post one day. He’s so cool, he has his own instagram!)

Depending on how your tree was originally made… I found the carpet was stapled along the seam. That’s fine, but if the cats scratched it loose around the stapled part, then the whole carpet piece was loose. I cut parts of the carpet off. Later on, I realized I could have left it. Either way I found it worked whether I left the carpet loose or cut it off.

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Choose a good place to start. I hot glued at the beginning of the sisal rope and then as I wound the rope around I added more hot glue. I wanted this good and tight as I know my cats and they really, really love to scratch on sisal. 

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Here you can see I decided to cut off the carpet. I didn’t see the sense in leaving a little piece here and there, though I doubt it would have made a difference under the sisal. BTW, that’s Chaz. My helper for the moment. 

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Chaz didn’t move at all. I guess he found what I did interesting.

Find another section that needs sisal and keep on hot glueing around and around and around…

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and around…

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That’s Spencer at the top this time and Eva peeking through! One more leg to go…

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The last leg! Finally.

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Done!

Easy project. This did take longer than I expected. I think having “helpers” added to the time, but I wouldn’t have it any other way!

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This time, at the top, is Sherlock. Aptly named as he is our most curious cat! And Chaz who is always good for relaxing “down at the club”. 

Tree looks much better! The best part is, the cats are happy to use it!

Tips:

Hot glue is HOT so be careful. You can use a chop stick or a screw driver to hold the sisal in place for a few seconds as it dries.

Sisal can poke into your skin. I had to tweeze out a couple “splinters”. You can wear leather gloves. I just sucked it up! Hahaha. I don’t do well with gloves. Which is why I have to deal with poison ivy on my hands when I’m out doing yard work.

You can hot glue a section and just wrap the sisal around a few times and then glue another small section. You don’t really need to glue every inch as you go along.

If your cat prefers carpet, home improvement stores carry carpet remnants. Rugs are also great and you can buy them at places like Target. They are smaller and easier to handle. I’ve used a good razor blade knife (be super careful) and cut the sizes I need.

The sisal I used for this project I bought at HomeDepot a couple of years ago. I did a check and they still carry sisal. Make sure it’s all natural, free from chemicals. This one states:  Safe for use with pet toys like cat scratching posts. Natural fiber-twisted rope is biodegradable and economical. Home Depot also ships! Since this project used up the last of my stock, I will be getting more. Sisal is really handy and I use it for many projects.

We know how finicky cats can be, so I hope this gives you an option to redo a cat tree your kitty already loves!

You are FABULOUS for reading this far! And I thank you so much for doing so! I hope you have a purrfectly happy day!

Koko

Surfboard Storage

At the moment, we are in a landlocked state. That means, no ocean touching our state on any side. Sadly, not even within driving distance. One day we will be near ocean again. It’s not a dream, it’s a reality! Until then, I wanted to store our boards in a way to still remind us that we surf, we love the ocean, we still are in the game!

There are many ways to store/showcase surfboards. Here’s what I did…

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I got these cute dragonfly hooks. I used a stud finder to secure the screws into studs. The dragonfly hooks slips easily onto the screw. I bought these at Target.

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I then used ribbon to hang the surfboard on and then slip the ribbon onto the hooks. Simple!

 

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Here, I wanted this type of look. The wood adds a nice element and really ties the wood tones in this room. You can see the shelving unit I built here… You can see I kept the wood natural in the shelving. I knotted this rope because “Spencer The Cat” loves to play with the hanging piece! Picture of him can be found on my instagram! Though I do have a few felines, he’s one of the orange ones. Future post on all the abandoned critters that have found safe refuge with us coming… 🙂

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And speaking of wood tones… I think it goes well not only with the shelving, but it goes nicely with the “drum” nightstand you can find that post here…  🙂 See that bottom surfboard? That was made by Rusty himself!

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These simple hooks can be found most anywhere…Home Depot, Lowes, Target. They are around 3 bucks for two! Not bad.

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I used cotton rope to hang these boards.

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Oh hi! This is “Spencer The Cat”! He loves to sleep, take baths, and purr.

Surfer Magazine wrote in 2020 surfing will be an olympic sport! If you love surfing, whether you like to surf or just watch, this is exciting news! My family is super excited about this!

If you have surfboards, paddle boards, even light kayaks, this hanging system could be a fun way for you to store your equipment.

Happy Friday to all you AWESOME followers. Go find, be, do something that excites you!

Peace, Koko 🙂

 

DIY Cat Tree, House and Scratching Post

Spencer, King of everything!

Spencer, King of everything!

I was given a great spool. You know the giant spools electricians carry massive amounts of wire wrapped around? Well I was given one, and not gonna lie, the array of ideas that invaded my head of all the things I could do with said spool. This is what I came up with…

Cat tree...bed and scratching post. See they love it!

Cat tree…bed and scratching post. See they love it!

Off to my wood pile I went…

I went to my scrap pile and found some 1×6’s. It would do nicely to make the “lid” or rather the top to my kitty condo. I laid out three pieces of 1×6 boards and drew a circle using the “spool” as the template. You can use any size width wood and lay however many pieces it takes to get to the size you need. You could also use a piece of plywood and cut a whole circle instead of using the tree boards. But as I mentioned I wanted to use up my scrap wood. 😉

I clamped down each board and used my jigsaw to cut the shape.

I clamped down each board and used my jigsaw to cut the shape.

One more to go!

One more to go!

All cut out.

All cut out.

Finishing the lid, I used 1×2 to connect the three pieces together. I wish I had a kreg jig to make pocket holes. But this method works too. 🙂

As you can see I used a lot of screws!

As you can see I used a lot of screws!

I set the lid aside and started to assemble the sides. Again going to my scrap lumber pile I was able to find 1×4’s.

Sanding all the pieces…I had to sand quite a bit, to rid them of the dents and discolorations. After sanding the boards I used a chop saw to cut the boards the height I wanted the “cat house” to be.

I contemplated using “L” brackets to hold the boards in place while I screwed each 1×4 to the top of the spool, however I ended up just screwing them straight to the spool using two screws per board.

I screwed two screws per board from the bottom. See the "L" bracket? I removed it as I found it wasn't necessary and the clamps really didn't help much either! :)

I screwed two screws per board from the bottom. See the “L” bracket? I removed it as I found it wasn’t necessary and the clamps really didn’t help much either! 🙂

You can see from this pic that the boards are wonkie. Don't let that discourage you! It will all work out in the end! Promise.

You can see from this pic that the boards are wonkie. Don’t let that discourage you! It will all work out in the end! Promise.

After all the boards are screwed from the bottom, I put the lid on and began to move boards into place so I could screw down from the top of the “lid”.

The wonkie boards will come together...wait for it...

The wonkie boards will come together…wait for it…

I knew the screws would be showing. So I spaced them apart to be appealing to the eye!

I knew the screws would be showing. So I spaced them apart to be appealing to the eye! And see all the wonkie boards are in place as promised!

Onward!

To the base of the tree…I used sisal to give the kitties an awesome scratching feature! I achieved this by using hot glue and good rope. You don’t have to glue the entire base. You can glue a few inches, wrap the rope, glue a few more inches, wrap rope…and so on…Keep going until you’ve reached the desired look!

This is the rope I used. It's sisal; a natural fiber. There was no odor on the rope. I've bought sisal before via online and gosh was that a mistake! The smell was so awful that no amount of soaking it in any type of solution would get the stench out! I make a point now to only buy rope if I can touch it/smell it. This was from HomeDepot.

This is the rope I used. It’s sisal; a natural fiber. There was no odor on the rope. I’ve bought sisal before via online and gosh was that a mistake! The smell was so awful that no amount of soaking it in any type of solution would get the stench out! I make a point now to only purchase rope if I can touch it/smell it. This was from HomeDepot.

I started right under the sleeping quarter.

I started right under the sleeping quarter.

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My helpers!

Glue and wrap, glue and wrap.

Glue and wrap, glue and wrap…

Another helper...

Another helper…

I stained the whole thing with dark walnut left over from a flooring job I did.  I put three coats of water based poly after.

I stained the whole thing with dark walnut left over from a flooring job I did. I put three coats of water based poly after.

As you saw I stained the piece before I added the sisal. If I were to make another I would probably stain and seal beforehand. Though in the end, I was careful not to get any on the rope. This was an easy project that really didn’t take long at all. Maybe a couple of hours? The longest part was waiting for the stain to dry and the smell to dissipate.

The kitties really like it and this piece doubles as an end table! Remember the lamp shade I made? Here I staged the lamp on that. But since then, I’ve moved it about the room where ever an end table is needed!

This was a fun project and I was happy to create something for my furry friends. They really do like it and love scratching their claws on the sisal. I hope you enjoyed this post and it inspires you to make something for your pets too!

And as you can see...not just for cats!

And as you can see…not just for cats!

Please like, follow, and share, your support means the world to me. It really does! ❤

From my furry friends to yours…All the best, Koko❀

DIY Dog Bed Easy as 1-2-3

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Thinking outside the box can be really fun when creating pet beds. This one is made out of a bass drum.  (My son’s very first drum set when he was five!) He didn’t want to get rid of it so he donated it to my many causes…Stay tuned for what I’ve done to the rest of his drum kit!

So what I did here was simply take off one of the heads and added a pillow.  Her blanket was in the washer at the time, but you get the idea.  Lay something soft down and your pup will know what to do! Not only do I find all my dogs loving this bed (except for the great dane and that’s because only her head would fit), but the kitties love sleeping in it too!

This drum was lovingly refinished, sanded and stained by my son, to allow the natural wood to shine through. You did a fabulous job son!

It’s a conversation starter and looks very stylish anywhere in the home. Get creative…re-think…re-purpose!

What creative ways have you used in making pet beds? Please let me know what you think. Be sure to check back, I have plenty more bed ideas for your furry friends! Paws and kisses…Koko

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No More Kisses!

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“Come on Mom, my friends are watching!”

I guess she wanted no part of loving. LOL…It’s incredible to me how much I’ve come to adore this furry little monster.  She’s comical at times, cheeky at best, and loving when only when it’s me and her. If one of her adopted siblings are around, she doesn’t dare snuggle.  She’s off in some hidden place as if to say, “I want mom to myself”.

Today is Monday.  Labor Day here in the United States.  Everyone is supposed to take the day off.  It also signals the end of BBQ season.  In fashion it’s the end of wearing light summer suits for men and the white pants for women.  It’s an interesting custom, one which I don’t practice.  I for one BBQ year round and if I want to wear white in the winter, so be it.

I am off to the market for BBQ things.  I don’t know if I have ever barbecued on Labor Day before.  It just happens the whole family is home and it’s such a beautiful day, grilling just makes sense.  So to you all out there, I hope your day is BBQ beautiful and you are out enjoying it…..Koko❀ ✿ ❁ ✾

Juvenile five-lined skink oh my!

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Please excuse the dirty hands, two hours mowing and two more digging will do that.

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It’d make a cool tattoo if I were so inclined!

Found another friend in the garden.  I was turning my mulch pile and this awesome creature scurried out.  I was super excited and ran in to show my daughter to which she backed away without panicking too much and I convinced her to take a peek.

The brilliant colors really are amazing in person.  You know this a juvenile because it’s tail is so striking and the blue (sometimes purple) tail is so vibrant.  You know you’ve found an adult male by it’s orange or reddish head.  Females are a bit duller but will still have the distinctive stripes and color.

These guys are often found in grassy areas or around wood piles and decaying vegetation. (Makes sense me finding him in my mulch pile!)  They can also be found around rock piles (I have tons of that; literally.)

They like to eat insects; such as grasshoppers and crickets, spiders, earthworms, larvae, other lizards, and even mice!

These guys are diurnal which means they live on the ground.  (Fancy name; diurnal 😉  )

Since they lay their eggs from May to June; the babies will hatch between June to August, and finding this one near, I’ve decided to leave my mulch pile alone.  Mostly because I like a creature that eats spiders and mice.  Not that I’ve seen any mice, but spiders…they are everywhere.  I’m not afraid of spiders and will often take them out bare handed, however getting bit is another story.  When I get bit by one, it takes days of healing using a concoction I make.

FYI: Five-lined Skinks are NOT poisonous; though some say they taste bad so as to discourage being eaten!

Skinks are territorial.

Females lay 10-20 eggs…They are oviparous, which means, they lay eggs with little or no embryonic development inside the mother; like a bird; it’s eggs embryonic fluids and such are inside the egg.  The development of the animal doesn’t come from “stewing” inside the mom.

The females take care of the eggs.  If they need to warm up, she will lay out in the sun and then return to the eggs to warm them up!  If the air is dry she will cover the eggs with soil so they don’t dry out and if they are too dry she will urinate on them to replenish the moisture.

If the momma suspects a rotten egg; she will eat it for added nutrition.

They are not harmful to humans.

Hope you enjoyed learning about these colorful creatures.  I’m off to dig up potatoes!  Have an awesome day! 😀

A Game of Cat and Mouse…

I start my day with making my bed.  Simple enough, one would think.  What you don’t know is I sleep with a demon…”gasp!”  No, not what you think.  And I’m not referring to my husband; I’m referring to a tiny-colorful-furry-four-legged-minx of a demon kitty.  She is the tiniest of the seven.  Yes you read that right; I have seven felines, (for another time and another story).

So this demon is pretty much the only one who comes in my bedroom.  It’s a game to her, I think, to wake me up in the night.  Most of the time it’s because she’s lost her toy (a hairpin; her favorite thing in the world and I am NOT kidding! Erm, maybe besides me 😉 ) Or, she has forgotten where she last left me; in bed!  She will cry, and talk, and chirp, but sometimes if I am lucky, she finds me asleep, and she will snuggle down beside me, real close; like she is a part of me, and sleep like the sweet angel I know she can be.  If my breathing changes, she knows! If I open my eyes ever so slightly, she knows!  I don’t think she ever really sleeps.  I think she stays awake, and when no one is watching, she sharpens her horns she cleverly hides close to her ears.

She lays in waiting until she knows I am awake.  Wait for it…wait for it…(This is the demon coming out in her.)…and then she pounces!  If I wiggle my feet she leaps like a rabid monkey and attacks my toes. Any slight movement and I turn into her prey.  She hunts me like a lioness stalking a rabbit.  Crouching down in position ready to make her move.

This is how I wake up when she’s in the room!  So I lint roll my bed.  Hardly any hair, but that is because I have this ritual of keeping things mostly clean; mostly.  Brushing teeth and doing my kick backs (gotta tighten those buns!), my little demon watches and waits.  I ignore her thinking that if I pretend she isn’t there, she isn’t really as adorable as she looks.  I sneak a peak, and between rep forty five; dang it, she caught me looking.  She falls on her back and chirps and lets out a meow only a mother could love.  “Okay, fine! I love her!”  I rub her belly with my bare foot and she clamps down like a ninja ready to do battle with Chinese stars for nails.

I finish brushing my teeth, bun muscles are burning from the repetitions, I pick her up, (ignoring the charlie horse that wants to rear it’s head because I didn’t stretch).  She wraps herself around my arm, mimicking a python squeezing its victim. She thinks she’s doing damage, but all she’s doing is making me laugh.

I am getting dressed and she is ready, as in, as soon as I open my closet she rushes in to hide.  (As if I didn’t see that coming!)  I toss on my usual; shorts and t-shirt and I call out to her.  I’ve got a long list of things to do and she can’t stay in there.  She ignores me because she has selective hearing; which she is quite good at.  In her next life she will come back as a kid, I know this because my human children suffer from the same selective hearing.

I look for a hair pin.  And I toss it, and out from hiding she comes.  Works like a charm, every time! She finds her hair pin and brings it back to me meowing and chirping with it in her mouth.  She’s a practicing ventriloquist.  How she can talk without moving her lips!  Astonishing!  I take the pin from her and save it for later.  She bolts. And it’s my turn to crouch down.  I peek around my bathroom sink and say, “Boo!”.  She crouches too and starts to sneak.  I run over behind the door and peak out and say, “Boo!” and she sneaks closer. This goes on until one of us gets close enough to pounce.

This is the game we play.  Silly albeit, but a game I look forward to, from the time she finally settles down to sleep, to the peak-a-boo game the next morning.  My little demon makes me smile.  And everyone should start their day with a smile.

Hope you have a smile kinda day!

Paws and kisses, Koko

Is Your Cat In Pain? Signs To Look For.

Cats are master disguisers of pain. How are we to know when they are in pain? What are the signs?

First off, I hope you know your pet well. If not, get to know her, after all you are her life line. You are whom she puts her trust in. You are the one that feeds her and grooms her and hopefully plays with her. You know her likes, dislikes, wants, and needs. You know things that make her jump; fireworks, rowdy kids, doggie that loves to chase her…

How about the new kitty you’ve adopted or the one you are fostering? How can you tell if she is in pain? Here are some tips in how you can tell if your feline needs more than love, food, and comfort.

What is the difference between being scared or outright pain?

Is your kitty suddenly running off to dark small spaces?
Is she wailing/crying for no apparent reason?
When you touch her does she shy away/bite at you/claw at you?
Touch her paws and move up each leg. Feel around her neck, down her spine, around her tummy. How does she react? (That was the way I had confirmed my kitties pain and what needed to be done.)
Does she seem abnormally tired/sleepy/not as active?
Any signs of discharge from eyes/ears/bottom?
Is she eating normally?
How about her facial expressions? Is she holding her ears back or in an odd way? Are her eyes glazed/sad-looking? (When one of my kitties was ill, I could tell by the look in his eyes. He had a sad hollow look. His whiskers sort of turned down. He was having some issues with his urinary tract…BTW; he’s completely recovered, yay!)
Look at how she walks. Is her back hunched? Does she hang her head low?
Is her breathing odd, too slow/too fast?
Is she pacing the room as if she can’t get comfortable; laying down only to get right back up?

Hopefully some of these tips will help clue you in on your kitty’s pain. Noticing the pain is the first sign in helping her get better. The signs will be there if you just take a moment to look. Paws and kisses…Koko