Category Archives: Animals

WATCH: Music scientifically verified to appeal to cats. No, really.

The world can be a pretty crappy place. But at least there’s this: Music engineered and scientifically verified to appeal to cats.

The cellist behind this has a Kickstarter campaign, and proceeds will go to animal shelters. So it’s for a good cause, too.

Cats on balconies

Here are a couple of cat-on-balcony photos for you to enjoy.

Lionheart probably misses the old place. There was no balcony per se, but the front door led to a small courtyard and he practically had run of the whole building.

At the new place, he’s not allowed to run free. The place is too big, it’s not allowed, and Glendale has some coyotes hanging around. But that’s not stopping Lionheart from perching on the rail and surveying his new kingdom.

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Sleepy time

Depending on Diphenhydramine (Benadryl and many over-the-counter sleep meds) to help you sleep too many nights in a row can give you weird half-dreams… You’re not fully asleep, you’re still halfway awake. It’s more like hallucinating than dreaming. And once you realize you’re hallucinating, your body tries to snap you out of it, and you learn a fear response to falling asleep that can stay with you for weeks. Melatonin and Calms Forte have the same effect on me after a couple of days.

I had one of those half-awake dreams where my dog and cat were alive again. Orson and Cecil were walking around the house, normal as anything, when suddenly I stopped and realized they weren’t supposed to be alive. “This isn’t right,” I said, as my brain began jarring me awake. “We die all over again every time you do that,” they said right before I jerked awake.

No more Diphenhydramine.

A cat’s problem with the Schrodinger’s Cat experiment

Lionheart lamp

Schrodinger’s Cat is the thought experiment where a cat inside a closed box is both dead and alive, and its condition is not determined until the box is open and the cat is observed by an observer.

But what about the cat’s perspective? Is not the cat an observer too? Are we both dead and alive until the box is open and the cat sees us? And hey, isn’t that damn cat meowing or something? C’mon, people!

(Lionheart says the observer is dead if there’s no cat food waiting when he gets out. And he left a little “present” inside for us to clean up.)

And be good to cats and dogs, because they’re pure…

I heard from so many people, not just on social networking, but when I talked about Cecil on the air, and so many of you responded. I thank all of you.

We love our pets so fiercely because it’s an unconditional love utterly devoid of falsehood. Our dogs and cats — and whatever kind of pet you have — are pure, in the deepest sense of the word. Their love is completely unstained. With people we have to negotiate minefields and baggage… I’m not saying that’s not worth it too, because loving people can be the hardest but most rewarding (and sometimes the most painful) thing… But with animals it’s all nonverbal, it’s pure, it’s all idealized simplicity that exposes where we are with absolutely no hiding.

Pets bring us back to the unadorned child inside all of us. So no matter how old we are we love them in the exact same way children love them. Is it any wonder that animal therapy helps so many people who are sick, or lonely, or facing death? A pet’s love reminds us that we can be as clean and carefree as a child again, that we can love as a child loves, no matter how old we are.