What Is Normal?

Newt has been behaving … oddly. Nothing to be alarmed about – quite the opposite, in fact.  Been trying to articulate what, exactly, is different about him.

As near as I can explain, he’s been acting like a normal cat!

To clarify, not so much “Newt normal” but normal normal, if that makes sense.  Not the “starving, must eat all the things hyena”, not the “heat-seeking, burrowing, little limpet”, not the “predictable, must have my normal routine” Newt.  Just … behaving like a normal cat.  (Well, as “normal” as a cat can be LOL)

He’s eating, but not huge quantities – acting a bit finicky, but not a mild hunger strike. He has been playing more than usual, with newly discovered toys, not just his preferred old favorites like Ball and Bouncy Bee. He has also learned a couple of new Scare Mum tricks, chief of which is to jump on top of the two large plastic yarn bins on top of the bookshelf, and perch precariously while regally surveying his domain.

I can almost hear him roar “I am the King of Yarnia!”

Well, at least until he decides to hang halfway off the ledge, rolling and writhing and preening while begging for head butts and belly rubs. Then he’s just simply ahhhhdorable.

It’s an odd feeling, finding a new normal. After four years of being hyper alert to every flick of a whisker, knowing so well all of his oddities, predilections and propensities, to discover that he is currently NOT acting in his normal fashion, but in what seems to be a new normal? Vaguely unsettling, but to be fully enjoyed – once we get over the shock, and adapt to the newest version of Newt normal.

In fact, just the other day, both Cat Daddy and I were marveling that he actually has been looking more like a cat these days, instead of our darling little half-grown adolescent kitten. His fur is sleek and glossy, his white markings are the whitest and brightest they have ever been, while his black spots are a rich, glowing ebony. Eyes have been a very light amber, and we haven’t seen his inner canthi in months. And his face seems to have filled out some more – more adult-like, and less kittenish. Oh, he still has that adorable little half-grown look about him, but he looks truly like a real cat.


Strange, how living with a liver shunt kitty makes you truly appreciate “normal” in all its wondrous variations – even when the “new” version of normal causes an initial alarm. 


Weird Little Cat

Newt’s been doing well. I, on the other hand, seem to have succumbed
to some nasty little bug – ahhhhh CHOO! Not sure if it is a cold, a
weird sort of flu, work-site-locations-are-filled-with-germs-itis, or

So, trying to continue my pro-active efforts at self care, I took the night off right after work, and went straight to bed to try and sleeeeeeeeeeep. In my quest for comfort, I
was migrating from sleeping spot to sleeping spot, accompanied by my
ever-present guardian Pookie Bear.

At first I was touched by his seeming
concern for my well-being.  I kept dozing off as he was circling round
and round me on the bed, like some sort of feline shark – stopping to
stare at me quizzically, nose-to-nose. This was of course, after we had to play a gentle round of Pouncy Fingers each and every time.  I was then repeatedly awoken to the
sound of his little meeps and trills while he was walking on my head – again, circling slowly – round and round and round, stopping to pat my face and meep in my ear.

It was only after I finally migrated to The Newt Nest that he grunted happily and immediately settled down to sleep. 

Harrumph! It wasn’t concern for MY well-being that was causing his behavior; it was his annoyance at having to try to get comfortable in a place not of his choosing.  Brat!

Like several of the liver shunt kitties we know, Newt does seem particularly set in his ways, and has definite routines.  Was interesting to see how something as seemingly simple as where to nap upset his delicate sensibilities.

What a sweet, silly boy, no?

My How Time Flies!

Eeek, had not realized it had been so long since posting an update! My apologies.

All is well here in Newtopia, and like so many owners of cats with liver shunts, we have been celebrating the good days as they come.

We had some concerns about six weeks ago, where he had a moderate episode, followed by a couple of mini episodes. Primary concern was that for a brief time he was not interested in food or water – always a bit disconcerting, but even more so now that we have been supplementing his food with soup, to help address the prior issue of urinary obstructions. We are quite lucky in that most of the time, Newt has no problems
eating. He doesn’t go on extended food strikes like a few other shunt
cats we know, and he’s never refused food for a long enough time that it
became truly worrisome.

He made it through just fine. I, on the other hand, may have aged another couple of years!

He is still enjoying his kitty cocktails, taking his herbal medicine on his snacks, and doing wonderfully well. In fact, we do think he’s gaining a bit of weight – Fat Boy Newt is FAT!  Due to take him for another urinalysis to see if the pH levels have adjusted back to normal.

He’s adjusted better than I have to my new schedule. Cat Daddy is doing his customary amazing job of taking care of my little Pookie Bear (and of me, too!). Things were pretty hectic for the last couple of months, but finally seem to have settled down to a dull roar – for now.  In fact, be proud of me! I actually took my own advice for a change hahaha and have been implementing some changes to minimize stress and engage in self care activities. Yay, me!

I actually took an entire day to go shopping with friends at the wool festival last week. I didn’t buy any sheep wool (why would I, when I have all that lovely chiengora to spin?) but I did indulge in some stunning copper-colored mohair.  Newt was doing rude things to it while helping me examine my purchases.  I’ll see if I can get you a picture.

Any guesses why I selected a copper color?

So, that’s why I haven’t written anything. Nothing really to report. Boring is GOOD, when owned by a liver shunt cat.  I haven’t forgotten the request to post the “recipes” for his kitty cocktails, and will also try to get you a current pic soon – as soon as I can figure out how to do so in a manner that is not “boring!”