Hi All!

I thought I had posted an introduction when my Tiger Lily had been chosen for Cat of The Day in May of 2009, but apparently I didn't as I don't see one here.

A lot has changed since Tiger Lily was COTD and I posted a few posts back in the May '09 time frame.

The biggest change is that Tiger Lily is no longer part of our family. She kept having repeated bouts of sterile cystitis, and after many vet visits, discussions, tests, attempting to change diet and do behavioral modifications, it was determined that Tiger Lily just was not meant to be part of a multi-cat household. It was the vet and the ultra-sound technologists professional opinion that the cystitis was due to stress, and from my husbands and my observations and sharing those observation, we all came to the conclusion that Tiger Lily just didn't get along with 2 of our other cats. So we made the difficult decision for US that she needed to find an only-cat home, for the good of her health and happiness. And so she went to an adoption center in Massachusetts where they would have kept her for her entire life if she didn't find the right family to want her. Luckily, Tiger Lily was only in the adoption center for about 2 weeks before she landed herself the right family to love her. I've had contact with her new family and Tiger Lily is doing real well. She was able to be taken of the amitriptyline (which I felt was robbing her of her personality and not helping with the stress), has had no urinary issues and is Queen of the home as the only pet.

Now, on to my introduction:
My name is Pat. I'm in my 50's, have had cats on & off all my life. I've been married for almost 30 years now. We live in a rural area of Southern New Jersey(USA) and have actively farmed our land when we were younger, including raising pigs and chickens as well as growing vegetables. I like to flower garden, I LOVE to take photos and share them, I am an avid Philadelphia Phillies Phan, like going to yard sales, enjoy creating photo web pages (I have several), love having a computer, love talking cats, and am a figure skating fan. My husband, Chip, and I never had any children so our pets have been our babies. I used to provide private child care in our home, but the children have grown and I was never able to find another family to bond with and provide child care for, so I'm totally unemployed at this time, as is my husband. The family I provided child care for is as much my family as my blood relatives, maybe more. Due to a 14 year age difference in the children, I provided care for this family for nearly 20 years! Coincidently, my immediate family is so similar to the family I provided child care for...the kids are half-brother & sister with 14 years age difference; my sister and I are half-sisters with 14 years age difference!

Our current pet family consists of:
Philly: A mostly black female, with white locket and "bikini" markings on her underside. I first heard her in, then snatched her up from, the woods across from our house in May of 2005. My vet estimated her birthdate at April 1, 2005, so she's approaching 5 years of age now. She's been on the slow side to become a people-cat, but since re-homing Tiger Lily, Philly's social skills are growing. She doesn't "hide" away in "her" room all the time anymore, likes to be out and about with the rest of the fam/furmily and is even beginning to bond with my husband whom previously Philly pretty much didn't want anything to do with.

Kit(ler) and Molly: My litter mate b&w tuxie sisters. Born in February of 2007 and fostered at my vets' small adoption center, we adopted them on April 30, 2007 after having lost our elderly Jack Russell Terrier, Aggie. Kit is an "in your face" kind of cat, but in a good way. She wants to be everyone's friend. She's very social and personable and has a huge flirty personality. She's a "look at me/love me/I love you" kind of cat. She got her name because of her little black mustache and her hissy personality...she's the only cat we never named ourselves. The vet techs who cared for her already named her Kitler and my husband liked that name, so we kept it but most often shorten it to Kit (or Kit Kit or Kit Kat).
Molly is pretty much the polar opposite to her sister, Kit. She is shyer and less extroverted, although she does have her times where she plays her own run-around-the-house games. She likes to join humans in the human potty room and give lots of head butts when the humans are on the potty, LOL! Molly had suffered an injury to her eye as a kitten, and came to my vets adoption center with the injury. Her eye doesn't look normal, but it doesn't seem to bother her much except in low-light situations. She does have some sight in that eye(left eye).

Piper: Piper is the baby of the family. She is one of Tiger Lily's kittens. (Tiger Lily's story can be seen/read here: http://cats.about.com/od/feralcatsre...ersey-Kitties/) Piper is a gray tabby with most of her secondary color being a very pale brown(or peach?) color. Her estimated birthdate is March 17, 2008. Piper gets along great with the other cats, especially Kit, who is like a second mother to Piper. Right from the beginning, as soon as I started integration, Kit and Piper hit it off well. Piper is rather unassuming, quiet...likes to sleep a lot, just like her Momma did. She does spend a bit of time "hunting" the Gremlins in the ceiling, though! I guess it's field mice getting in the house, but she'll get on the highest thing she can in the living room and watch the ceiling and cry at it sometimes. She also LOVES the laser light and likes to share "crunchies" with my husband. Whenever he gets a bag of crunchy snacks out, she comes running to sit next to him and he gives her a tiny tidbit of whatever he's eating.

We also have our Nellie, a pointer-beagle mix outdoor dog. She is now 16 1/2 years old. She's a great watch dog even in her older years. When the weather is extreme, which luckily isn't too often here in NJ, we bring her into the kitchen where Kit tries to be her friend but Nellie just isn't quite sure what the heck she is supposed to do with a cat!

So, I guess that is me in a nutshell! Looking forward to posting here more regularly and getting to know some of you.