come join me in my rants(?) about various topics. cats, writing, life, or that one game i cried over for three weeks, i officially announce my retirement as the feline queen and am now a clown. enjoy.
The Beauty of Poems
I never really imagined myself writing an article about poems. But for some reason, this was one of the first ideas that popped into my head when I wondered what to write next. Maybe this came from a certain game I’ve played recently; Doki Doki Literature Club. I know, I’m very late to the party. I just found out it was free, don’t blame me. This disturbing game isn’t so disturbing in the first act (apart from during the end, you’ve been warned). In fact, I enjoyed hearing about Monika’s first writing tip she gave me.
“Sometimes, when you’re writing a poem – or a story – your brain gets fixated on a specific point. If you try so hard to make it perfect, then you’ll never make any progress. Just force yourself to get something down on the paper, and tidy it up later! Another way to think about it is this: if you keep your pen in the same spot for too long, you’ll just get a big dark puddle of ink. So just move your hand, and go with the flow!”-Monika, from Doki Doki Literature Club
This tip inspired me a lot. Playing DDLC made me want to write again. No idea if that was intentional. The girls’ poems in Act 1 were actually really cool too. It was nice to see all the different styles of writing you could show in poems. Just like Natsuki said, not all poems have to be so sophisticated, you can keep it simple if you want.
I’ll be honest with you, I’m not the best at making poems. I have a bad habit of worrying about the smallest details. Whenever I do write one though, it helps a lot with expressing what I’m feeling. Poems don’t even have to make sense most of the time. That’s part of why I love them so much. If you’re into writing, but not poems, try writing a poem one day. Maybe when you feel more productive or just need to let out complicated emotions. Whenever you want, just try it. Write whatever comes to mind.
Half of this article was me ranting about Doki Doki Literature Club, sorry about that. Well, that’s it for this article. Have a nice day!
The Feline Queen
Your Cat Is Boss: Make Them Happy!
Most cat lovers adopt a cat with not only for their own personal gain, but to rescue another cat from the animal shelter, with the hope of opening up more room for another kitty. Of course, cats themselves are the main reason people feel the need to adopt one. Their charm may lure you in, once you’re at the animal shelter. When you do finally adopt a cat, everyone gets settled in, and now you’re happily living life with a new companion. But you’re not done yet. You adopted a pet, and now you have gotten yourself into a cat-lifetime long commitment. So here comes the hard part; how do you keep finding different ways to make your cat happy?
As smart and wonderful kitties seem, there are many things that domestic cats can’t do on their own. For example, now that we’re approaching the blistering hot days of summer, your cat needs its water bowl to be refilled more regularly, with it being fresh and icy to appeal to them. Your life can’t be perfect until your cat’s life is. Learning what your cat likes is trial and error, don’t expect to get it right on the first try. Below I will list some things you should consider looking into;
- Favorite food brand- Cats can be very picky eaters, so look for the food brand your cat is more willing to eat
- Favorite type of toy- Some cats are less willing to play then others. Maybe it’s because they prefer going after the toy themselves, instead of having a human tease them.
- Favorite toy- Once you’ve figured out what type of toy your cat likes, watch carefully as they interact with the toys of that category. Whenever cat isn’t in the mood to play, try using their favorite toy.
- Favorite schedule- As you most likely already know, cats sleep for around 18-20 hours a day. So it’s important to know when your pet feels like sleeping, eating, or playing.
- Favorite petting spot- This one might be the most important by far. It’s crucial that you know how your cat likes to be pet. This might seem like a joke, but trust me, it’s not. Some cats don’t even want to be petted!
Now once you have these matters out of your hands, try seeing if they’re effective! Cats might not help you with the house chores or save you more money, but they’re always around to make us feel better about ourselves.
The Feline Queen
All You Need to Know About Lions
Lions are one of the most well-known felines, and they’re distinct from the rest of the big cats. They’re more social since they live in a group with other lions called a pride. Their eyes also aren’t vertical slits like domestic cats. But enough of that, let’s get learning!
There are two types of lions. African lions are found in Africa, while Asiatic lions range throughout Asia and Europe. They live on the open savannah, African plains, scrubs, grasslands, open woodlands, and the Indian Gir Forest. Lions prefer to make their homes under shady trees (Usually Acacia trees of Africa). It’s only when the lioness wants to give birth to her cubs, she will find shelter in a den. Lionesses move away from the rest of the pride and take refuge in dens to protect their young ones.
There are about 30 lions in a pride, and males and females both have separate roles. There can be up to three males within a pride, and a dozen or more females depending on territory and how much prey there is.
Male lions have the vital job of guarding and marking the border of the pride’s territory. When the lionesses are out hunting, they also help protect the cubs. Male lions let out a roar that can be heard from 5 miles away! This noise tells other nearby prides and male lions to stay away! It’s ordinarily heard after sunset.
A lioness’s role in the pride is primarily hunting and taking care of the cubs. Lionesses work together when they are hunting prey, including zebras, wildebeests antelopes, and a few other large animals that live in the area. Lionesses are essential in a pride.
When young male lions reach a certain age, they leave their pride and find another one to take over. Female lions never leave the pride they were born in, except for when they move to a den nearby to have cubs.
According to the IUCN Red List, the lion is stated as vulnerable. One of the reasons the lion is vulnerable is because of a lack of habitat. Humans also hunt down lions to keep them as trophies, for medical beliefs, or to protect their farm animals from them. Asiatic lions are slowing dying out, while African lions are a bit more common.
Lions are majestic and beautiful creatures. We have to take care of them like we take care of other animals.
The Feline Queen
Felines are fascinating to learn about, and cougars are one of them. So in this article, we’ll be learning about this feline.
Cougars aren’t as threatened as other big cats. (Tigers, leopards, cheetahs, etc.) Around 30,000 cougars exist in the American West. There can be 1-7 cougars ranging in about every 38 miles. Male cougars tolerate several females within their home range. The IUCN Red List marks cougars as ‘Least Concern’ as of April 2014, but sadly it’s numbers have been declining. Cougars range from Canada to Patagonia, South America. They can be found in areas varying from the desert to thick forests. Cougars prefer to live away from humans, in dense vegetation or cover to stalk prey and raise young. They may leave an area is something disturbs them, but they’re still very territorial. A male’s territory can range from 50 to 150 square miles!
Next is the cougar’s appearance. An adult male cougar weighs around 60-80 kilograms and 240 centimeters in length. An adult female cougar weighs smaller than a male, approximately 40-50 kilograms. An adult cougar’s appearance includes a tawny brown color with white around the muzzle. They also have a tail of the same color with a black tip. When still cubs, cougars have spots on their pelt.
Cougars have a lifespan of 8-13 years in the wild. The females reach sexual maternity in about 1 1/2 years. They come into heat regularly during the year but the females normally only deliver a litter every 2 or 3 years. Cougar cubs are born defenseless, with their eyes closed. They have spots on their pelt that fade as they get older. Cougars nurse their young for around three months, but the cubs are still reliant on their mother until they’re two years old. A male cougar will kill any kitten they find on their own, even if they’re the father of the kittens. Sadly, an average litter only ends up having one cub survive to adulthood. Even a grown-up cougar has a low chance of surviving a long time. A cougar living in the wild has a life span of 8-13 years, but a captive cougar can live up to 19 years.
Like the other felines and big cats, cougars are carnivores. They seem to prefer to eat deer and other animals that are a similar size but will also hunt animals like squirrels and rabbits or mice and birds. Cougars rarely hunt mammals like moose and elk as they risk getting injured more gravely if they try to attack such a large animal. A cougar usually lies hidden in wait and then leaps out and tackles their prey. Once a cougar has their prey grasped, they will swiftly maneuver toward the animal’s head and bite its neck. With smaller animals, a cougar may bite the dorsal side of their neck to provide a quick death but larger animals are gripped on the throat and strangled.
I hoped you liked learning about cougars!
The Feline Queen
3 Wild Instincts The Domestic Cat Still Has
Cats act like mini panthers a lot of the time, and sometimes they do crazy things you think are done for no reason. While some of those weird things are done for no reason (Or no good reason), there are very interesting cases in which you might like to find out about. Let’s get started!
Have you ever noticed your cat rolling around on the floor? This movement is called the ‘Dirt Roll’. In the wild, cats use this as a form to mark their territory. Cats have scent glands on the pads of their paws, on top of their heads and in the cheeks. So when they roll around, they’re spreading their scent. Of course, that may not be the case. How do you know what they have in mind? Examine your cat closely. Where are they doing the dirt roll? If it’s on a new piece of furniture, then the cat is probably marking it. Or, your cat may be rubbing their cheek on the floor. Since a cat’s cheeks have scent glands, they also can be marking their territory.
Another reason your cat may do the dirt roll is that they’re just playing with a toy. More specifically, a catnip toy. Or anything else that has to do with catnip. I’ve noticed my cats rolling around after sniffing a catnip leaf. It’s pretty cute, to be honest.
This one’s common, all cats do it. Scratching! When a cat scratches their nails on a rough surface, like a scratching post or even your couch, there can be many reasons behind this. First, your cat might want to mark their territory. Cats have scent glands on their pads, so that suggests that when a cat scratches their nails, they’re telling all of the nearby cats to stay away!
They also might be trying to relieve stress. Just like you might start doing a hobby to soothe yourself, cats can also work on their “scratching” hobby.
The last reason is that cats are cleaning their nails. Sometimes they get dirt and grime in between their claws. Cats can also loosen a nail layer, eventually making it fall off, and this allows a sharper, newer, and cleaner layer to appear. This would be something very useful in the wild because they need their claws for almost everything, from catching their prey to defending themselves. Although this instinct can get very annoying sometimes (as in, your kitty deciding to use your couch as a scratching post), it reminds you that cats can be just as wild as a tiger!
This last instinct is all about cats hiding their pain, even if they know you could help. In the wild, cats have enemies. If they were to meow in pain, the cat’s enemies would hear and try to attack the vulnerable feline. The cat instead covers their hurt and keeps on going with their life. So when a cat realizes they’re in pain, they don’t let you know straight away. But good cat owners know the signs of a sick cat, so you should be able to tell if your cat is sick or not. In case you need a reminder, here are some signs you should watch out for if you suspect your cat is in pain:
- Sneezing or coughing
- Loss of appetite
- Bigger appetite
- More skittish than usual
- Other behavioral problems
Unless there has been a change in the household, you should bring your cat to the vet if you think your cat is acting strangely.
I hope this was helpful to all the cat owners out there!
The Feline Queen ❤️
Why Won’t My Cat Eat?!
Oh no! Your cat, who usually has a big appetite, has stopped eating! Don’t worry, here you’ll learn why your cat stopped eating, and how to fix it!
As you may know, cats are a bit like humans when it comes to personality. They can be sassy when they’re angry, and friendly when they have missed you. But sometimes cats can be very picky. This may be part of their personality completely, or maybe they’re just mad because you forgot to fill their food bowl up. So if you happen to find yourself forgetting to feed your cats, only to see that they won’t eat at all, they’re probably annoyed with you. This has happened to me a few times, and I always just make sure that they have food available and leave them be. By the next day, everything will be back to normal!
Another thing that’s happened to me is my cats getting bored of the same brand or flavor. The brand of cat food I use has multiple flavors, so my cats don’t get too fussy.
Since there are many reasons your cat might be acting a bit “picky”, here’s a list!
- Your cat might be feeling stressed
- Your cat might have just had a vaccination
- There are new people in your house
Of course, in some cases, when your cat doesn’t eat even after you’ve tried everything, it could mean your cat is sick. And there are some serious illnesses that include ‘not eating’ symptoms. But don’t panic! Before you bring your at to the vet, try looking for some other symptoms that may show your cat is sick. Have your cat suddenly begun losing weight? Is it throwing up, sneezing, or coughing? If it is, bring your cat to the vet as soon as you can!
Hopefully this guide helped you!
The Feline Queen ❤️
Learning All About TNR (Part Two)
Hmm…where were we? Aha! We had just finished talking about the materials you need in order to execute TNR properly.
Now we’re gonna discuss how to actually do it. Ok, so first, you gotta set your little trap up. I recommend doing TNR during dusk or dawn, as that’s when the cats are usually most active. But that isn’t necessarily required, so don’t push yourself.
Most humane cat traps have a pressure plate inside and have the doors close when stepped on. This is why you need the bait to lure the cat inside. Place the cat food inside and set up the humane cat trap so it’s door is open, but make sure the pressure plate works, first. There’s usually a manual in case you help setting the door up. I recommend placing the trap in a place where you’ve seen the cat the most.
Next, you just have to wait! Stay close enough to the trap so you can see the feral cat and get to it quickly if it gets trapped, but far away enough so the cat doesn’t get scared away by your presence. If you accidently trap a cat that has already been neutered or spayed, trapped a pet cat, or a completely different animal, release it and keep waiting.
Once you have finally trapped trapped your kitties, approach the cage (be careful, and DON’T open the door!), and put your blanket over the cage. This will help calm the feral cat. If the clinic you planned to go to isn’t open yet, bring the cat to your home until the clinic does open. If the clinic is open, bring the cat to your car and head to the vet. If you’re doing TNR in any cold seasons, make sure your car is warm enough. If you’re doing TNR in the hotter seasons, make sure your car is air conditioned. Don’t leave the cat alone in the car!
Your finally on the last step! Drop the feral cat off, and come back later. (sometimes the clinic will lower the cost of the surgery, or even make it free if you explain to them that you’re doing TNR, or you’re working with a TNR organization.) The vet will most likely call you once the surgery is done. Usually after the surgery, the clinic will keep the cat overnight. However, if they don’t have enough room you may need to keep it at your house overnight.
At last, the day has come to release the feral cat. Go to the exact same spot you trapped the cat, and release it! The feral cat will most likely bolt out of the cage, and you’ll officially have done TNR! Congrats!
I hope this article has encouraged you to do something to help the cats, and if you do, good luck!
The Feline Queen
Learning all about TNR
I mention TNR quite a lot in my articles. That’s because it’s such a simple way to help save the cats. But now I’m gonna dive deeper into this topic.
As you may know, TNR stands for trap-neuter-release. It’s when you trap a cat, you bring it to the vet, the vet makes sure the cat can’t mate, the vet gives the cat it’s vaccines, the vet cuts off the tip of their ear, and the cat gets released back to where it was found. Simple! But what about the specifics, such as when’s the best time to do TNR, or what materials you need. I’ll be covering all of this here.
To begin with, you have to investigate. How many cats are there? A whole colony? Only three or four? This is important because you’ll need to know how many humane cat traps you’ll need. Also, are you sure they’re feral? As around the neighborhood if you’re not certain. If the cats are feral, take a closer look at them and see if the tips of their ears are missing. If this is the case, that mean that they’ve already been through the TNR process and should be released if you catch them.
Once you’re sure you want to do TNR, you’ll have to make some preparations. First, set up an appointment with the clinics you’ll be going to go to have the cats neutered or spayed. Some clinics do the surgery for free if they are aware you’re doing TNR. Keep in mind that once you trap your cats, if the clinic you’re going to isn’t open yet, the cats will need to stay overnight at your house, either put in the bathroom or other extra room you have. Do you have the required space for that? Remember, the more space or rooms you’ll need! If the feral cats stay at your house, don’t enter that room unless you want to check in them and don’t let them out of the cage.
The materials you’ll need in order to trap a feral cat are pretty easy to obtain, you can most likely find them in a pet shop or your local market. To begin with, you will need bait. There are two main types of cat food that have their own pros and cons.
First, there is dry food. Dry food usually come in large quantities, which may be helpful if you want to spay a whole colony of cats. Dry food can also last longer than wet food. But it’s smell isn’t as strong and some cats may find it unappetizing.
The other main food is wet food. Wet food has a very strong smell and you can buy a specific amount of cans or just the whole box. But wet food doesn’t last as long and can sometimes be expensive. You can choose whatever you think is best when trying to trap a feral cat.
The next two things you need are a humane cat trap and a blanket. A humane cat trap is a type of cage that has a door that closes as soon as the pressure plate is stepped on. It’s great for doing TNR. The blanket is used to be draped over the cage so it will calm the cat. The number of humane cat traps, food for cats, and blankets will depend on the number of cats you want to trap.
The last thing you’ll need is tarp. You use the tarp to line the room and cage if the feral cats stay at your house.
TNR is a simple operation yet it includes so many small details. Due to this, I will separate this topic into different parts, so you don’t have to end up reading a whole book. Stay tuned for Part 2!
The Feline Queen
What Does “No-Kill” Actually Mean?
If you’ve ever gone to an animal shelter, you probably think you know what a “no-kill” shelter is. But it’s not. Well, at least if you think that “no-kill” shelters mean they don’t kill animals there. Wrong! So what does it actually mean? Let’s find out!
The Asilomar Accords are kinda like a guidebook to animals shelters. They tell you the definitions of terms that have to do with animal shelters. Now, you probably know that in “kill” shelters they euthanize cats that are unhealthy. Most people may think, that’s sad, luckily “no-kill” shelters don’t do that! But how do The Asilomar Accords define the term healthy as? Let’s take a look. According to The Asilomar Accords, the term healthy is described as…”all cats and dogs eight weeks of age or older that, at or subsequent to the time have manifested no sign of a behavioral or temperamental characteristic that could pose a health or safety risk or otherwise make the animal unsuitable for placement as a pet.”
Wow. So so far we know this: “no-kill” shelters also kill kittens under 8 weeks and unfriendly cats, like feral ones. Since many people are unaware, they’d think; oh, I found this feral cat out in the streets, but don’t worry, I brought it to a no-kill shelter! Or they might think; I live in a no-kill city, so they don’t need my help! But that’s not true at all.
What about the term treatable? Does it help the “unhealthy” cats’ situation? Treatable is defined as…”who are likely to become “healthy,” if given medical, foster, behavioral, or other care equivalent typically provided to pets by reasonable and caring pet owners. ”
Now that just confirms suspicions about the kittens. Kittens take much more energy to take care of than other pets and do not count as “treatable”. Unless taken in by a foster family, a kitten under 8 weeks wouldn’t last a day in an animal shelter. But it isn’t the shelter’s fault. It just doesn’t have the time and money to take care of the kittens.
All of the animal shelters need YOUR help. Without any foster parents, so many kittens and feral cats could get euthanized. Foster isn’t even that difficult, or complicated. So support your local animal shelter, kill or no-kill.
Inspired by Kitten Lady at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-iUjy243-Fs
The Feline Queen ❤️
Should Feral Cats Be Kept in Homes?
Many people make the mistake of adopting a street or feral, cat. But is it really a good idea?
I bet you’ve seen at least two feral cats in your street. Maybe you even feed them. But they are not meant to be pets. Most of the street cats you’ve seen are not friendly. They usually run away if you try to pick it up, or pet it. But there is a difference between a street/feral cat, and a stray cat. A feral cat is a cat that has had very little or no contact with humans. Unless they are socialized by fourteen weeks of age, the cat is officially feral. A stray cat is a cat that was abandoned or lost by their owner. Basically if the cat has had enough human contact to be used to them, they’re stray. Stray cats can usually be put in animal shelters, but don’t expect them not to be a bit timid. After all, they’ve probably had a hard life.
In my articles; “World of Cats”, (http://thefelineuniverse.com/world-of-cats/) and “Saving the Felines!” (http://thefelineuniverse.com/saving-the-felines/) I mention TNR. I’m eventually gonna dig deeper on that topic later on. But TNR is an amazing way to make sure that the feral cats living in your area are healthy and happy. If you didn’t know what TNR was, then here’s the answer: TNR is a process where you trap a feral cat, bring it to the vet and have it neutered or spayed so it can’t have kittens, and then returned to where it was found. After TNR it’s safe to feed them without being scared of producing more kittens.
The more feral cats that don’t go through the TNR process, the more cats that are born and end up being feral. Even if a feral cat ends up being neutered or spayed, there are still many hardships or living in the wild. But feral cats will not be happy living in an animal shelter. What they consider freedom is not what pet cats consider freedom. Feral cats are also usually either aggressive, timid, or, both.
The Feline Queen ❤️