Fram & Sax News & Cat Care October 2016
01 October 2016
Date for the diary: 27 October 2016 is National Black Cat day; 24 hours to celebrate these sleek mini-panthers which are sadly often ignored in favour of their more colourful cousins. Look out for more information in the press and on social media. Able Seacat Simon was black (with some white) proving that cats can be brave, fearless, heroic and useful - whatever their colour.
News: Re-homing cats and kittens during the summer was a little disappointing for Fram and Sax CP, but as soon as the holidays were over things rapidly improved. The many kittens we were fostering have now gone to their very own homes as have several of our longer term residents. We are very grateful to all the adopters who came to us to find their new best friends.
Cat care: Destructive Behaviours: The idiosyncratic habits of felines are often what attract us to them! Occasionally though their behaviour can become destructive; scratching and clawing things they shouldn't, for example, or shredding curtains or a favourite item of your clothing. Scratching helps cats shed their claw sheaths. This means they are helping you take care of them, as their claws will need less trimming. Scratching also leaves a visible and chemical scent marker that identifies their territory. Cats that have access outdoors will use trees or fence posts to leave scent markers which proclaim their province.
The scent marking may continue indoors, too. Providing a satisfying alternative for your cat will discourage them from ripping through your precious household items. Try fabric or carpet off-cuts, bark-covered logs, stout wooden posts or sisal fibre. Once your cat has discovered these fun, easy-to-scratch objects, they’re less likely to go back to your furniture. Try out various locations for their scratching toys, trying both vertical and horizontal scratching posts. In the meantime, cover the areas you don't want damaged with smooth plastic or foil. Don't forget, if you are think that your cat is a little too destructive get them checked over by your vet to ensure there is no underlying medical problem.
Catology: The only cat to receive the PDSA Dickin Medal for animal gallantry, Able Seacat Simon was ship’s cat on the British frigate HMS Amethyst. Smuggled onboard in 1948 in Hong Kong, Simon quickly became the ship’s chief ratter, helping to manage the vermin problem that was rapidly damaging food supplies. After a particularly ferocious gun battle with Chinese forces during the Yangtze incident, Simon was badly wounded by cannon fire. He managed to crawl on deck and was rushed to the medical bay where his burns were treated and four pieces of shrapnel removed. Amazingly, Simon survived the ordeal and was awarded the Amethyst campaign ribbon for ‘behaviour of the highest order’. When he died in 1949, Simon was buried with full naval honours. Lots more detail and pictures of Simon and his maritime colleagues can be seen here: Able Seacat Simon & his friends