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It’s mid January on the Court and it seems the cats are confused.  We’ve been experiencing warm weather with the temperature running 10 or more degrees above the usual 53 degree day time high.  When I say they seem to be confused, I mean they are starting to shed some of the winter fur.  This usually comes in March, 2 months from now.  Usually at this time of year they rarely go out and sleep most of the day.  This month they have been spending most of the day outside, coming in to for a quick meal and heading back out; behavior more typical spring time behavior.

The Big Guy has started to loose some of the golden mane he grew for the winter.  It’s still quite full but he’s lost some of the fur on the bottom of his neck.  The young female coon has lost some of hers, as well.  While these two have left a few clumps of fur on the carpet (and anywhere else they happen to be), the real problem is with the other Maine Coon.  He’s started to leave piles of fur everywhere.  We’re not talking about a few hairs here and there; we’re talking about clumps of fur.  I’ve probably vacuumed up enough fur in the last week to spin yarn for a sweater, a XXL cable knit sweater.

Because it’s warm out, the Oak Court Cats are spending more time outside.  There seems to be a direct relationship between the amount of time spent outside and the amount of food consumed.  As they’re more active, they are eating more.  I’ve been putting out 2 to 3 of the 5.5 ounce cans a day along with a pound of crunchie munchies.  A month ago the five of them last maybe half that much.

We’re watching the weather forecast closely as the warm weather is not going to last; we’ll be cold pretty quick and the cats will not be ready for it. They’ll be camped out around the heater again.   While I enjoy sharing my house with the cats, I’m not looking forward to the cold again and having to share my blanket with them again.

Later

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It’s winter on the Court and the cats have adjusted to the cold weather.  The court is in the San Francisco Bay Area so our winter isn’t as bad as winter in Buffalo or Montreal.  For us a nightly low of 35 is miserable and a day time high of 55 is just about as uncomfortable as we want to be.  Winter discomfort  is relative to where you live.

The cats are as affected by the cold as we are.  Missey just doesn’t like to leave the bedroom during the morning hours; here she can crawl under the blanket and stay warm.  Ok, she’s getting on in years and, as an indoor cat, she doesn’t grow the thicker winter  fur anymore.  Precious the Predator doesn’t develop a thicker coat either and will spend her days under the same blanket as Missey.  I believe she left a wake up call for April 1.

The maine coons, however, seem to thrive in the cold.  The Big Guy’s mane is gold with black

The Big Guy's mane

stripes and is probably an inch longer than the rest of his fur.  It is also much softer than his regular fur, as well.  One of the other coons, a female, also has developed a mane this year.  She spend a few hours a day outside in the yard in the cold air and her coat is much thicker than it was in October.  The Big Guy spend quite a bit of his day outside and depends on the extra fur for warmth.  Come April, when he starts to shed, the house will be covered with hair.  I may just chase him around with a shopvac for a day or so to get most of the shedding over with.

The court cats spend their evenings on or under the bed covers, occasionally strolling about the house searching for something to ‘investigate’, like a shopping bag or a newspaper. Yeah, newspaper.  Seems they have taken to shredding it while tossing the pages around the living room.  Last week they went through the entire Sunday paper, including advertising supplements, in about an hour.

I’m looking forward to the warm days when I can toss them outside when the get the kitty-crazies again.  Until them I’ll put up with indoor games.

Later