Update on My Health

I have to apologize for not posting more articles this year.  I haven’t been very inspired to write, only to sleep.  If you’ve read previous posts then you know I have Lupus.  I feel like I’ve been doing a really good job taking care of myself and eating right, however, I’m still extremely tired.  After a visit to the Doctor I realized why, I also have Mono.  At least that one will go away eventually.  Lupus + Mono certainly does eat up any energy I would normally have to update my website or blog so please forgive me.  On a good note the cats are loving it.  I just lie in bed all day with them on top of me.   Hey, if I’m going to be sick, that is the way to go.  I really love cats.  I’m going to keep this short and sweet so I can go back to bed.  If you need to get a hold of me please e-mail, I seriously doubt that I can move fast enough to answer the phone.  Not to mention I’m probably sleeping and I can answer e-mails as I have the energy.  Thank you so much for your patients.

Lots of love!

Susan

Serengeti Savannah’s Switched To Raw Feeding

My cats want to eat everything I eat.  They come over and put their little noses in the air and sniff.  Generally, like just now, I let them sniff my apple and they realize they don’t want what I’m eating after all.  I get a “No, I’m good.” And they walk away.  Not with Juno, lol.  I’ll let her sniff the apple and she will take a bite.  “Don’t mind if I do, mom.” She says.  Juno will eat anything if I let her, just because.  She feels like if you are eating it then she should be eating it too.  Changing her diet is easy as pie and that is exactly what I did.  Well, as of 2014 I changed everyone’s diet.  Everyone went raw!  I’ve been meaning to for quite some time but it always seemed like such a big financial effort not to mention the amount of time it would take to prepare it etc…  After being sold on it weekly for about a year I finally gave in.  Again, it’s not that I didn’t think it was an optimal diet, it just seemed like a lot of time, effort and money.  And what if I was sick?  I’m sick all of the time.  Would I be able to keep it up?

Well after 3 whole months of feeding raw I’m so sad that I didn’t start sooner.  It’s so worth it.  I had read quite a bit about it before I did and I still didn’t really realize all of the benefits I would get.  First and foremost, the cats actually seemed happier and more chilled out.  The only way to gauge that it to really know your cats and I do.  I felt like it was the same as taking someone who was on a nutritionally complete liquid diet and then giving them a different nutritionally complete diet where they could chew.  I think the cats were just more satisfied.

The second thing I noticed was that the litter box was less smelly, significantly less smelly.  Before if the cats were upstairs and I had guests over, the guests would be able to smell if the cats pooped in the litter box.  Not the case at all with feeding raw.  I personally thought that was amazing.  Then I noticed their coats got softer.  I didn’t even know that was possible because they were so soft already.  Over time I have noticed their teeth are a little whiter as well.

So what about my fears?  Well, it certainly is more expensive, however, you get what you pay for.  I do believe it is a better diet and in the long run their health will be better.  I also hope that as I do this longer I will figure out how to save more money at it.  It doesn’t bother me though, I want the best for my cats.  For now I’m ordering off of rodentpro.com and I can get little chickens or rodents that are frozen sent to my front door.  It’s so easy to feed the cats.  I literally walk over to my freezer and get it out and they eat it frozen.  It is no different than going to the kibble bag and getting a scoop.  Really the only difference I found was that one day my freezer stopped working.  Luckily I found it quick so nothing thawed out and I have a backup freezer down stairs.

In the end, for me it ended up not really being much more planning.  I used to buy my kibble through a wholesaler so either way I had to plan ahead to buy cat food.  I wish I knew someone local to buy from, but I don’t.  Also, I’ve been very sick for the last 3 months and I still was able to keep up with feeding raw so it’s not hard.  Yay me!

So that is the first 3 months on raw feeding over here at Serengeti Savannah’s.  I will keep you updated as usual.

My Cats Help My Lupus

It’s on days like today where I forget my husband’s name, where I put the car keys and if I even ate today that really get me down.  Everyone tells me that they are forgetful too, but they aren’t, not like the brain fog I get from Lupus.  Sometimes I just sit there and can’t remember what I’m supposed to be doing at all.  I know there is something, I just don’t know what it is.  Generally I have to make a list of what needs to be done, or I don’t remember for weeks.  And then there is my cats.  They may as well be my nurses.  They constantly follow me around the house making sure I’m okay, at least that is the way it feels.  I’m supposed to be the one taking care of them but sometimes I feel like they are the ones taking care of me.  Licking my face when I’m sad, lying on my chest when I sleep, giving me head butts, playing with me when I’m alone, meowing at me as if we’re having a conversation, giving me kisses with their noses.  Maybe we are taking care of each other.  Sometimes I can’t get out of bed.  My joints swell up and I can’t move, and my cats don’t leave my side.  I’ll wake up and have cats lined up and down my body while I sleep.  I really need to have someone take a picture of that someday.

I do believe they make my Lupus easier.  There is actually studies out there that show that the cat’s purr is very healing to sick people.  According to an article in the Dragon’s Guide Newsletter, Scientists have determined that a domestic cat usually purr in the range of 25 to 40 Hertz (Hz).  Research has demonstrated that exposure to a frequency of 25 Hz increases bone density by at least 20%. Veterinarians, say that if you put a cat and some broken bones in the same room, the bones will heal. This may also explain why cats rarely suffer bone or joint related diseases, including hip dysplasia, arthritis and ligament problems, or bone cancers.  Purring also seems to open up a cat’s air passages, thus reducing the incidence of respiratory problems. The respiratory difficulties often associated with heart disease are rarely found in cats, and all breathing problems a cat may have are quickly alleviated when the cat begins to purr. A story in the New Zealand Veterinary Journal (1973) described a dying cat who was having so much trouble breathing that its vet was considering euthanasia. However, once it started to purr, it began to breathe normally. Purring seemed to open its air passages.

Psychologist Dr. June McNicholas of Wales found that cats provide considerable emotional support during the early stages of spousal bereavement and woman with breast cancer which leads me to believe that any ailment you actually do a study about, you’re going to find that cats help with it.  Could that be said about any pet?  I’m sure it could.  Pets are members of our family.  My cats are part of my soul.  I love them so much that how could I not feel healthier when they are loving up against me?

Savannah Cat Myths

After reading some crazy misconceptions people have on the internet about Savannah cats I decided to write about the truth.  Then I found this perfect article already written about it.  I love this!

http://svrescue.com/home/savannah-cat-myths/

Clipping Kitty’s Nails

Whenever I get a new kitten I start clipping their nails as soon as I can.  Kitten nails are especially sharp and you really don’t want to be scratched by them, even on accident.  They are also learning how to jump and balance and so they put their claws out often.  The sooner and more often you clip them the more your cat will get used it and not fight you.

http://savannah-cats.com/amazon-shop/  The Perfect Cat Nail Clipper!

I’ve found that the optimal time to clip kitty’s nails are during a nap.  I slide my sleeping kitty onto my lap and chest and lift up her paw.  Extend one claw at a time by pressing on the back of the knuckle.  Push the fur back so that you can clearly see the difference between the pink and white in the nail.  Use one hand to hold the nail and use the other hand to hold the clippers.  Slide the part of the clippers that cuts all the way up the white part of the nail to the outside of the pink part.  Do not clip the pink part or your cat will bleed.  Leave enough room between the pink and the white part so that when the clipper goes through the nail it isn’t touching any of the pink part.  If you do this often the pink part will reside and you will be able to cut further down the nail.  Once you are finished with one nail move onto the next one quickly.  Cats with an abundance of patience are hard to find.  I always do the front paw first because they are the most important to my lifestyle.  If my cat gest impatient and I’ve only completed the front ones, I’m okay with that for now (until the next nap he he).

 

What do you do if you cut the nail too short and it starts bleeding?  Put a little flour on there.  It will absorb the blood and help stop the bleeding.  Your cat will have a bad taste in her mouth after that though so you will really have to keep up on the clippings to show her it’s not a bad thing.  You won’t need to clip the nail you cut too short though for a while.

 

The more often you do it the less the cat will fight you.  Again though, it depends on their moods.  I wouldn’t grab my cat when she is hyper and expect her to sit still while I clip her nails.  I also wouldn’t clip her nails in a situation where she feels vulnerable.  She loves my German Shepherd for example, but I wouldn’t clip her nails with the dog in the room.

 

After you clip the nails make sure you give a good rub down as well and show your love.  Clipping nails should always involve lots of love to leave a really good impression with your cat.  You don’t want her to run when she sees you coming with clippers.  It’s also a good idea to play with her paws and nails when you’re not going to clip them, just so she gets used to it.  You may need to schedule your clippings on your calendar at first so that you don’t forget.  Whatever works for you, just keep it up and it will be something simple for both you and kitty.

My Sweet Virgo-Libra-Dog-Savannah Cat<3

I love Astrology!   I’m not a guru and I’m not familiar with all of the signs, but I have found in my personal life that when I meet someone for the first time and they are the same sign of someone else I know in life, I can immediately tell.  Finding out what sign someone is and researching their sign gives a lot of information about them, more times than not people really tend to follow much of what their sign says.

I decided to read up on my Queen Juno.  Juno is a Virgo.  Well, Virgo on the cusp of Libra.  So I started reading about Virgo cats.  What did I find?  Virgo cats are shy, finicky about their food and ultra-cleanly.  Um, that does NOT describe my cat.  Juno loves everyone!  She doesn’t necessarily like to be held by everyone, but if you come through my door and sit down it’s only a matter of time before she’s on your lap grooming your arm hair or meowing loudly at you if your move from her comfy position.  She will eat ANYTHING she can get her hands on and though she is really big into grooming, she doesn’t always do the best job at it.  Definitely not a perfectionist in the grooming arena.  She does feel that grooming is her responsibility though.  Everyone in the house gets groomed by her daily, especially the dogs, oddly we don’t see a lot of hair balls but it may be due to the fact that we do a lot of brushing ourselves.  I went on to read that female Virgo cats are very attractive, WELL THEY GOT THAT RIGHT, lol!  Some of the traits are just straight up Savannah traits so I can’t tell if they are Virgo cat at all like loyal, dexterity that is above average, won’t stand for a dirty litter box or water bowl.  I didn’t feel like the Virgo cat really captured Juno’s full personality and I though hmmm, Savannah cats have a dog personality in a lot of ways, so I looked up the Virgo dog.  Now also realizing that Juno is only a few days away from being a Libra I looked up Libra dog as well.  What I got if I fused the two was an absolute perfect description of Juno.  So, courtesy of www.PetHoroscopeFree.com, here is Juno’s horoscope.

Juno seems to want nothing but to help others. Often seen cleaning or grooming the other animals in your house, she also will encourage sick ones to eat. She prefers the comfort of her small family and enjoys the company of a companion; she should (and did) come with a sibling. She will not be happy unless you are available 24 hours a day. Ready to serve you, she will herd animals as well as children from harm. Never standing for dissension, she will be the one making sure everyone gets along. Fighting is not allowed – the world is too beautiful and has many things to explore. She will be the first to alert you to any hidden danger often sensing when a storm is brewing. Pacing and attention getting schemes will allow you to be aware of changes coming your way. Always watchful even when asleep – one eye is observing all before them. She is tuned in to the whole family. The true socialite, she does everything right to please you and become number one in the household. She is a very social animal and is the life of the party. She appreciates aesthetics and enjoy a daily dose of grooming. She likes to try to outsmart you, and often is seen making up clever games as she goes along.

I love my sweet Virgo-Libra-Dog-Savannah Cat!  I’m so privileged to be her mom.

 

Savannah Cats Talk Back

One of my favorite things about my cats is that they talk back.  I’ll have to get it on film one day.  If I had a dollar for every time I said what I am going to catch on film I’d be rich by now.  I have big hopes though, lol.  I’ve always heard people talk about their spouse or other person asking them why they talk to their pets as their pets can’t talk back.  I beg to differ, mine talk back just fine.  I’ll ask Juno if she wants to go down stairs and she’ll meow and stand up.  If I ask her how she’s doing she’ll just meow.  As long as I keep talking she meows in the pause, it melts my heart.  It also makes me feel like she understands me.  If I ask her if she’s hungry she will meow and run to her food bowl.  Don’t tell me animals can’t understand us, I certainly think they do.  But Juno knows too much, I’m glad she can’t talk to other people, who knows what beans she’d spill, lol.  Who really ate all of the ice cream or took a nap instead of doing laundry, not me that is for sure, wink wink.  It would be nice to know what really happened when I came home to both dogs and Juno playing in the back yard together.  Cute but, who opened the door?  Apparently Fang did, lol.  Now we have to lock the doors so the dog doesn’t let the cat out.  They work in a team.  The more agile cat knocks things down and they get into it together on the floor.  Maybe that is the payment for the dogs letting the cat out.  At least they work as a pack.  Who knows, they probably wouldn’t snitch on each other of they could talk.  I’m certainly glad they love each other so much.  I love my little fur family!

The eHarmony Video Bio Still Makes Me Laugh!

I attempted to post this video right when it came out because it made me laugh so hard, but I couldn’t figure out how.  As many of you know, I’m not so savvy with technology.  I make my buddies Justin and Souter do most of my tech stuff.  Anyway, I have figured out how to add it and it still makes me laugh so here it is.  I hope it brightens your day!

Yes, I’m aware it runs over into the menu on the side, lol, but I just don’t know how to do anything about that.  Let’s go with it people!
P.S.  I’m very glad cats are not electronic!  Well, I don’t find the electronic ones appealing at least.  I like them furry and warm with their whiskers and noses and OMG, I’m just like this girl LMAO!  I do love this video.  Enough talk, time to watch.

P.P.S.  I think this girl looks like my sister.

The Truth About Savannah Cats

Yahoo article: http://shine.yahoo.com/author-blog-posts/house-cats-bred-wild-animals-sell-35-000-142500274.html

I often laugh at the less than newsworthy articles that come out on Yahoo.com, however, this one is about me and mine. I snickered at first when I began reading it but then as I continued to read the outright lack of fact being written about my breed I thought about how many people were reading this article that honestly didn’t know the truth who were going to believe what this article had to say. And then I got sad at media. I mean, we’re lied to every day and we know this, but this one hit close to home for me. So, here I go, line by line, explaining the truth about Savannah cats.

The article was right about one thing, Savannah cats are a hybrid of a domestic cat (a tabby cat to be exact) and an African Serval. And yes, they are very popular. That is because they have a gorgeous “wild” look to them yet they are indeed domestic. It’s like having a wild cat in your house, except it isn’t wild, AT ALL. I feel like the author is confusing “wild looking” with “feral.” A “wild looking” cat has fur coat with a golden back ground and black spots whereas a “feral” cat is a cat who lives on it’s own and doesn’t come in contact with humans thus is mean. Savannah cats don’t run around and attack everything, well, except my son’s Webkinz stuffed animal cat, lol. But mostly she just ran around with it in her mouth like it was her baby.

Moving on, the author said “ African wildcat that weighs up to 50 pounds and eats everything from birds and hares to deer and gazelles.”

LOL, what? Valley Stable Exotics writes on his website that an adult Serval weighs between 18lbs. and 44lbs. on average, with the female being slightly smaller in overall size. An adult Serval stands approx. 24″ at the shoulders and is close to three feet long. Even Wikipedia states that female Servals range from 15 to 26lbs and male Servals range from 20 to 40lbs. Where does the author get 50 lbs from? And they eat deer and gazelles? I guess it is possible, but if they’re going to quote Wikipedia on this one they maybe shouldn’t have left out the beginning and ending of that sentence which states that they have been seen taking down a deer or gazelle but over 90% of the Serval’s prey weighs less than 7 oz, yes 7 oz. They really like birds, fish, frogs, you know, little things. I laughed when I read that. You know what mine eats? Kibble. Yes, Blue Buffalo Wilderness to be exact.

“F1 Savannahs are at least 53% Serval.”

I don’t know why the author writes 53%. An “F1” is a Savannah cat with a Serval parent. That would make the Savannah cat at minimum 50% Serval. That is just simple Mendelian genetics.

“In New York, among other places, it’s not even legal to own a Savannah, unless it’s at least five generations removed from a wild cat.”

This statement makes it sound like Savannah cats are highly illegal when in fact they are legal in most states. The state legalities are always changing.  To keep up on that you can check my legalities page http://serengetisavannahs.com/legal_states.php.

The author goes on to quote “Big Cat Rescue” in their article. “We have had a bunch of them that were former pets. We have had to turn away many, many more because most of them cannot run free outside and have to have the same cages as bobcats and cougars.” It goes on to note that they all spray urine incessantly, they bite, and they “want to eat your other pets and they don’t care if it’s a German shepherd – they are going to be constantly looking for a way to take the dog down.”

I’m still shaking my head at this. Spray incessantly? They bite? I don’t even know where to start, no and no. They don’t spray or bite more than any other cat. Also, biting with any cat depends on how they were raised. They do LOVE to chew though. I get them chew toys just like I get my dogs. Speaking of dogs, I happen to have two German Shepherds. Juno my F2 Savannah cat, her best friend in the whole entire world in my German Shepherd, Rikku. They sleep together, groom each other, play chase, you name it. And if you look through my FB posts you will see Juno dressed up as Little Red Riding hood sitting next to my black German Shepherd, Fang. They went as Little Red Riding hood and the Big Bad Wolf. Fang could crush Juno with ease but she doesn’t because she is part of our pack. To think that Juno would “take down” Fang, well, not only is that physically impossible and out of Juno’s character, but it’s so utterly funny I literally did fall on the floor and laugh at that idea. I’m still laughing, seriously. Additionally, when my Serval is around my German Shepherds, he just runs. He will put up with them being in the room, he will walk over them when they are sleeping. He doesn’t really care that they exist, but when they want to play, he runs. And how are they putting a Savannah cat in a cage with a bobcat or cougar? The poor Savannah cat would be lunch.

I clicked on the link to “Big Cat Rescue,” it looks like that is where this author got most of their material for the article, that and Wikipedia. The very first sentence of the “Big Cat Rescue” article was the very last sentence of the author’s article which was “Allowing the private possession of wild cat/ domestic cat hybrids is like strapping a nuclear war head to the feral cat problem.” I thought it was a gimmick the author used to get more readers at first, but no, they actually wrote it. Why would anyone write such nonsense? Why is breeding Savannah cats in any way a nuclear effect of the feral cat problem? Wouldn’t all cat breeds share in this problem? The feral cat problem is a whole other discussion. I will say this though we don’t have a feral cat problem because of reputable breeders. Reputable breeders take responsibility for each and every cat that comes through. We spay and neuter the cats that are not meant for breeding programs before they even leave our catteries (unless the owner specifically asks for that not to be done). If you want to address the feral cat situation look at the crazy cat ladies breeding in their homes, look at the people who let their cats outside without spaying or neutering, look at the lack of regulation in order to breed a cat at all. There are many reasons but to blame a good breeder or a specific breed is just not right. There are certain breeds of cats for good reason. Every breed of cat is different and they all have their purpose. Savannah cats are not for everyone. If you like high energy dogs you will probably like Savannah cats because they act exactly the same way. My working line German Shepherd and my Savannah cat have almost identical personalities.

But wait, it gets better. There is a video at the bottom of the article on the “Big Cat Rescue” page. The representative in the video goes on to say how only 50% of house cats even like people. Yes, he said only 50% of the regular house cats even like their own owners. I’m beginning to wonder if this guy is a cat hater. Why would you say that? And where are these statistics coming from? Then he goes on to say that Savannah cats won’t eat cat food. Um, my Savannah cat eats cat food, so does my Serval. You know who told me to feed my Serval kibble? My Veterinarian who previously worked with the Servals at the zoo. What a generalization to say that Savannah cats won’t eat cat food. They eat what they are raised eating. Most of the Savannah cat community prefers not to feed their cats kibble, so the cats don’t eat kibble. That doesn’t mean that they can’t or won’t. And if the cat bites take into consideration how the cat was raised, don’t generalize that just because it’s a Savannah cat that means that it bites and won’t eat cat food. I’m laughing that I even have to address this issue with grown adults. Notice how the cat that appeared under your porch acts differently than the one you adopted at 8 weeks old, there is a reason for this.

I realize that I’m a Savannah cat breeder so many people may say that I have reason to disagree with the author, however, everything I’ve stated here is fact. Don’t take MY word for it either. Just because I wrote an article on the internet doesn’t mean anything. Review my facts. Look up the information on reputable sites and see for yourself. Look on my FB page and see the picture of my Savannah cat with my German Shepherds. Use your brain as well, could a cat actually take down a German Shepherd? If I have one important thing that I did want to get out to the world about Savannah cats is that they are high energy. And before you adopt any pet ever you always need to research the breed and what you are actually looking for in a pet. If you want a laid back cat then a Savannah cat isn’t for you, maybe a Ragdoll cat instead. Or maybe the Humane Society. I needed a companion cat at one point and that is where I got my black kitty Mosley. Education is always the answer. Do your research before you ever adopt.

Wait! Don’t Use That Plastic Container to Feed Your Cat!

I remember walking through PetSmart years ago and buying a cute little plastic container to hold my cat food in. It was perfect! It had a little clicky lever on the side so that I didn’t have to worry about the cats getting in, well at first. Then they figured how to get in so I had to keep the container in the pantry. Everything was great until I realized how cat food was made. Cat needs fat in their diet. In the kibble making process the fat is sprayed on last. The cat food bag is made to support fat being rubbed up against it. It doesn’t absorb any of the fat at all. However, plastic is porous. I was taking the cat food out of the bag and pouring it into this cute, non-scary-to-me, plastic container and leaving it there all month while I fed my cat. The fat was being absorbed into the plastic, much like you would notice when you put spaghetti sauce into a plastic container and you can’t ever get the color out. So the fat was stuck in the plastic. Now the fat collects bacteria. It also absorbs the nutrients out of the cat food that is still in the container. Not to mention the air is oxidizing the cat food. So now what?

All is not lost my little cat loving people. You don’t need to Freecycle your poor little cat food container. There is a simple answer to your cat food needs. Just keep the cat food in the bag and put the bag in the cat food container. YES! Angels are singing and a white light is shining on your cat food bag inside your cat food container. Also, invest in a chip clip. Then as you use your cat food you can roll the bag down and clip it. If too much bag gets in your way as you get low on food, just cut that bag down to size. Now the food is in the special made bag from the cat food company themselves, being kept away from porous areas and even air to the best of your ability. Yay!

BUT, what about when you feed your cat? Feeding out of a plastic bowl? Ahhhhh! My advice, use stainless steel. Here is a link to the bowl I use in my Amazon store.

http://savannah-cats.com/amazon-shop/

Water your cat in a stainless steel bowl too. Stick it in the dishwasher when you’re done to fully kill any bacteria on there. The heat of the dishwasher will kill whatever is on there. What if you forgot to wash the bowl and now it’s feeding time again? No worries. Wipe it down with a Norwex Enviro cloth.

http://media.norwexcs.com/Flipbook/USA_2013_Catalog/#/6/

It is a microfiber cloth infused with silver. It will kill the bacteria on contact and will NOT harm your cat at all. You are literally just getting the cloth wet with water and wiping down the bowl, nothing left on the bowl. Ahhh, finally you can rest at ease. All of these links are permanently at the top of this blog for when you need them in the future.

None of my breeders, vets, or stores where I bought pet supplies ever taught me about how using plastic wasn’t a good idea for feeding my cat. So unfortunately there are probably lots of others who don’t know as well. Hopefully this article helps people out there. Hugs!

P.S. Sorry guys, you will have to copy and paste the links. I know Savannah cats, not computers.