Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Best Way to Spend a Sunday

Catchin' mousies!
(...actually, that's a Sukiroo Flipper - we love 'em!)



Sunday's Shelter Sweetie: Chad!

"Hello. I'll bet you're wondering what a handsome mancat like me is doing in a place like this."

"Actually, I'm kind of wondering that myself.

Not that it's bad here at all. Three squares and a nice cozy blanket.
But when the lady who took my photo opened my cage to say hello...

Oh my. Attention. Scritches, even.  Sheer bliss.

Is that what it's like in a forever home?
I can hardly wait to find out.

Please come say hello. Who knows? Perhaps we'll never have to say goodbye.
I'd like that, I would.

Yours with rumbling purrs,

Chad is extraordinarily sweet and desperate for some loving. If he sounds like he might be your furry soulmate, head on out to Great plains SPCA and tell them Chad sent you.

He's just one of the many adorable adoptables available at the Independence Campus of Great Plains SPCA.

Saturday, August 30, 2014


Here's your #DailyDoseofIndependence!

Isn't Goober a foxy looking boy?
Seriously, with that sleek, long nose, he resembles that trendy little animal, dontcha think?

Only foxes don't purr, or rub up against you and snuggle like this guy does.
And Goober is the kind of kitty who sets his own trends. Like nightly belly rubs in front of the TV while you watch your fave show.

Sound good to you? If so, he's waiting for you!

Goober's available for adoption today - along with literally hundreds of other kitties - at Great Plains SPCA in Independence, MO!

Film Class: Back Acting.

Of the many ways in which a scene can be blocked, back acting is possibly one of the more intriguing.

Spielberg used it famously in Schindler's List, when Oskar Schindler enters a club to ID various SS men. It can be highly dramatic. 

As the camera follows the actor, you rely wholly upon body language, subtle cues and the reactions of others to carry the story.

You can use a form of back acting in still photography, too.

What epic tale do you see woven into these three pictures?
Love and loss?
An attempt to comfort, summarily rejected?
A monumental case of halitosis?

Poor Maxie. 
(...or is he? The plot thickens!)


Friday, August 29, 2014

Memorial Commentathon

In Memoriam

Today we join with Sparkle's family - and all of us, her blogging family - to celebrate and remember her in the best way possible: by giving back.

Please visit and comment in her memory. 
For each comment a donation will be made to Tabby's Place. 

And for every comment you make below, we will make a donation to our great local need, Great Plains SPCA, in Sparkle's memory.

Thank you.


Fashion Faux Paws: Strike a Pose

Allie: There's nothing more Fashionable than knowing how to strike a pose.

Here, let me take a moment from my daily duties as Resident Hairdresser to show you my sassy, vogue style:

Of course, there's nothing more sassy than a peekaboo pose.
Remember to look coy for the camera while peeking!

We'll finish with another classic:
All Fashion Experts know the value of using color sparingly, and to great effect.

Lesson over - now go pose for the lens. Remember, the camera loves you!


#DailyDoseOfIndependence: Great Plains SPCA

Many of you have heard us talk about the dire straits of one of the shelters we support.
Here's the back-story:

Great Plains SPCA "crossed the line" last April - the state line, that is.

You see, the Kansas City metro area straddles the border of Kansas and Missouri, and last year, this Kansas-based No-Kill shelter took over management of the city shelter in Independence, Missouri.

And the Great Plains Independence Campus was born.

It's being run by many of the fabulous people we have known for years at Wayside Waifs, Allie's Alma Mater. And we couldn't be prouder of what they have sought to accomplish: turning a kill shelter into No Kill. Sometimes, we even refer to it as Wayside 2.0 - simply because we don't want you to think we've casually switched loyalties. Both shelters are No Kill, and both deserve our appreciation and support for jobs well done.

But lately, our focus has been on Great Plains, because quite frankly, right now their need is greater.

By the end of the first three months of operation, the shelter had already taken in the equivalent of a full year's worth of cats. And this is a shelter whose numbers had held steady for years and years and years, so this phenomenon was completely unexpected.

At their peak two weeks ago, they had well over 700 cats and the trend looked to top 800.

These little guys are lined up in hallways, stacked in offices - basically every available nook and cranny!

There is speculation as to what might be behind this, but no definitive answers. And to be honest, though the "why" behind the situation is important, especially for shelter management going forward, it doesn't do much to help the situation right now.

No, the only thing that'll help is adoption - and transfers to partner shelters.

We're trying to do our small part by following in the footsteps of the blog, Sebastian the Sensitive Soul, whose owner, Amy Palmer, instituted the #DailyDoseOfIndependence tradition on Facebook.

We're posting there, too. But we'll also be reposting about these eminently adoptable cats right here on A Tonk's Tail, as well.

So without further ado, we present to you today's Daily Dose of Independence: Harvey Dent.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Look Both Ways Before You Cross...

Mommy always says to look both ways before you cross...

What? WHAT?!? It's not a street!

It's just the stupid front porch.

One of only two successful runs for freedom this summer, lasting a grand total of 15 minutes, until she returned me to my indoor prison managed to catch me. After using that stinky ol' flashy box on me.

Seriouslies. You think she would let me do anything fun, like visit the neighbor squirrels?



Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Innocent?

Oh yes. He looks innocent enough....


Wednesday's Waif: Linden

"Thanks for taking a moment to read about me! My name is Linden, and I'm a very friendly and sweet black kitty with amazing green eyes."

"I came to Wayside as a stray. I'm talkative, too. If you come to Wayside to meet me, I will probably greet you with a hearty "Meow!" However, I won't be in the Cat Adoption area. You see, there are lots of cats in there, and I can't stand other cats.

Maybe another cat was really mean to me once -- I can't put into human words what happened -- but I don't like other felines at all and actually scream when I see them. So I need to go to a home where I'm the only feline family member.

But I have such a great personality, I'm all the cat you need. I love attention (from people!) and I will let you know how much I enjoy your affection with headbutts and my great purr that sometimes sounds like a coo.

The Felineality testers here say I'm a Sidekick. That means I'm moderately brave in new situations and I love the company of people. If you take me home, most of the time I will want to be right by your side, keeping you company. But I'm also capable of entertaining myself, too, should the need arise.

If I sound like your kind of cat, please come to Wayside and ask about me, Linden. One of the great staff members or volunteers can take you back to meet me. I can't wait!
Love, Linden"

Linden is available for adoption at Allie's Alma Mater, Wayside Waifs.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

'Toon Tuesday Doodle

Toon Tuesdays feature animal (and sometimes human) humor created by the peeps over at Shoebox Greetings (a tiny little division of Hallmark) - where our mom works, too!

I Has a Sads.

Hullo. My name's Alexander.
Yeah, I know I probably look a bit long in the face.

It's not that I don't appreciate being warm and dry and having food in my belly. I do, honest!

But... I hear stories. Stories about a place where humans will cuddle you and give you chin scritches and belly rubs. Some place called "home."

And, oh, I don't know. Maybe I'm a bit of a dreamer, but I long for that. Yet I look around me and I see cute kittens, and literally hundreds of other cats in exactly my predicament and I worry.

I worry.

Won't you please come out and meet me? I promise to keep all your secrets and be loyal to you - just you - forever til the end.

Wistfully yours,

Alexander is waiting for you at Great Plains SPCA, Independence, MO.

Monday, August 25, 2014

GUILT: you're doing it right. 
Don't worry about me.
I'll just sit here, all alone.
On your clean clothes.
Waiting for you to come home.
I'll be all right.  


Sunday, August 24, 2014


Maxwell: Dood, that's exactly how Mama says she feels, after making it through these past two weeks!

(light saber duels to the death - with crayons, we might add - blew up a microwave, sent a film editor to the hospital. We'd say film at 11, but the editor is, uh, otherwise occupied!)

But we digress. We join our show, in progress: 

Faraday: Kitties! Are you getting your exercise in?

Determination. Keep going, Squeaks!  You can make it to the top! We're rooting for you!

Allie: Hmpf. I notice there are no "summit" shots....

Faraday: *sigh* eeeeeeveryone's a critic. 


Sunday's Shelter Sweetie: Mary Lou

"Hi, Mary Lou here!

There's a volunteer here who's been a good friend since I first arrived. She always sings an old Ricky Nelson song ("Hello, Mary Lou...") to me when she visits. Most of the time I roll over on my back and beg for head rubs. Sometimes I even meow along. There are other times, though, especially when it gets to the line about "mine forevermore" when I stalk into the small side of my kennel and refuse to be lovey.

Maybe it is because no one so far has wanted to make me theirs 'forevermore'. And honestly, I am really tired of living in my little condo."

"Luckily, I got a chance to take a vacation from shelter life and am just back at the shelter relaxed and refreshed. It was sweet! I got to live with another volunteer who had an extra bedroom all for me! I was in heaven with so much space. I got to look out the windows and see people pushing baby strollers down the street; watch joggers go by with their dogs; and even get to hear the ice cream truck coming down the street.

I'm quite social actually. My foster mom says whenever she was in my room hanging out with me that I always want to be near her. I don't usually sit on her lap, but lay between her legs or curled up next to her hip - close but not smothering her, and I'm purring away.

I don't need to be held all the time like some cats, and foster mom can have her hands free for crafts or reading. I hadn't been much interested in toys, but am getting fond of a cute little plastic cat with a fish on a wire that's got a roly-poly action. I also like my ball toy and chasing mom's tape measure when she's sewing. I may not have been exposed to toys during my formative months, but I'm catching up now. Love those rolly balls that whiz by too!

I love being brushed with my own little pink brush. It has a soft side that I love having rubbed on the top of my head and down my back, but especially on my cheeks. I like being petted and having my cheeks rubbed with a human hand too, though sometimes I can gently nip if it's too much of a good thing. I don't break the skin or leave a scratch, just my way of saying "enough already!". I do it less and less as I'm getting to know my frequent visitors. I've got them trained now so that if they see my dirty look, they stop unless they're not paying attention.

I don't like other cats for some reason. People think I'm afraid of them and at the shelter, it's even a bit worse seeing so many. I didn't like my foster mother's cats either and they're nice to me. One especially wanted to be my friend, but I had to say "no, thank you". I'm really going to need to be your only kitty. Is that okay with you? I promise to give you so much love and attention that you'd think you had a whole pack of friendly kitties living with you.

I like it here but I want my very own person or family. I want to be able to follow my human around and see everything that's going on and not be bothered by other animals. There's a great big world out there I want to explore and so far, I've only gotten to see a little piece of it. Sadly, I've spent half my life in the shelter so am more than ready to see much much more. Would you be willing to share your world with me?

I promise to be yours forevermore.

All my love, Mary Lou"

Mary Lou has been waiting a very, very long time for her forevermore at Great Plains SPCA, Merriam. And - til the end of August - she can go home with you for free. All fees are waived!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Photohunt: Engage

Maxwell and Faraday, right before they engage  
in a riveting match of Rock - Paper - Scissors. 


Friday, August 22, 2014

Fangs on Friday

Uhh..."slapstick fangs"?

Dood, seriously. What up with the expression?        ;-) 


Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Loss of a Friend

Sometimes images speak where words fail.

We cannot begin to express the depth of our caring for both Sparkle and her human. For more than a decade, Sparkle brought wit, compassion and wisdom to readers, and was instrumental in the rescue and rehoming of countless animals in need.

We join with many others today, reaching out to a friend, honoring her work and her talents, and sharing her sorrow at her loss.

Janiss, Sparkle will always live on, in our memories. Our hearts. 


I'm watching you.

Nothing gets by the watchful eye of this glam girl.

Except maybe for the bratty little brother waiting, off-screen, to pounce.

Film at 11.

We have a winner!

The winner of the pre-release version of the book Catification by Jackson Galaxy and Hauspanther's Kate Benjamin *and* the cool kitty lunch bag is...

               Manx Mnews!



Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Earnest.

We can't thank you enough for your understanding 
as our mom struggles with a pretty intense workload 
and a looming (next week) deadline. 

We promise we'll be visiting as soon as is humanly (and feline-ly) possible! 


Wednesday's Waif: Everett

We're not sure exactly why Everett is still at Wayside. He's stunning, sweet and very eligible!

Everett is a purebred blue-point Himalayan. He's 3 years old, and he was transferred in from another shelter that was out of space. He's pretty shy (which might be part of the reason he's still here). But he's been very affectionate and chatty with our human!

We sure would like to see him find his forever home (before our mom brings him home to ours!!).

Everett is available for adoption today at Allie's Alma Mater, Wayside Waifs.


Urgent News Flash:

Remember Great Plains SPCA? You know, the other great shelter we support? The one we sometimes like to call Wayside 2.0, since many of the same great Wayside staffers are now over there?

Just yesterday, Great Plains SPCA and the city of Independence, MO released a news report stating that the MO Department of Agriculture visited the shelter and put a moratorium on the number of cats they can hold. NO MORE CATS.

They are overfull - waaaay beyond capacity - with over 700 cats in the system and 400 in that one building alone. 

They need people who might be considering getting a cat for a pet  
not to shop for one, but to adopt

From them. Like, now!

Can you please pass the message along? 
Share in social outlets? 
Consider a donation to help them feed these poor souls in the meantime?

Thank you!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Funny But No: Koalas

Toon Tuesdays feature animal (and sometimes human) humor created by the peeps over at Shoebox Greetings (a tiny little division of Hallmark) - where our mom works, too!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Time for an Extreme (feline) Makeover Check-in!

Hello, feline weight-loss followers!
It's time for another look at our very own...

Since we last visited, our #TeamAllie girlcat has kept her game face on. She's stepped up her workouts -- always a good thing to include in any weight-loss program!

Check it out - our girl knows how to bust a move!

We've been keeping a Diet Diary - and Mom's even offered to keep her company:

And Allie's been enjoying a new taste sensation every day in the form of Merrick Purrfect Bistro Grain Free canned food. Yum-OLA!

Well, actually, Allie's been enjoying Purrfect Bistro, but Mom's had a bit of a problem.
Until now, she's never had to deal with plate poaching.

Impasse! Who will get the Duck Paté - Maxwell or Faraday?
 Until now.

Nah, we didn't think you'd be surprised, either.
Mister Pushy might have won dominance over that dish...

...but Maxwell scored one of his own!
Let's just say Allie's keeping a weather eye out for any theft:

Allie: "I'm watching you, boys!"

Weigh-in Time!

So how is Allie doing in the weight department? She's down another half-pound, at an even 13! We wouldn't exactly call her svelte yet, but she's getting there. 
(woo-hoo, get that pink bikini ready!!)

  Allie: Thank you, Merrick, for making my weight loss journey a delicious experience!

 News Flash!

We were very excited to learn that Merrick has teamed up with one of our fave shelters in the Midwest: Tree House Humane in Chicago. The kitties at Tree House are now eating Merrick branded pet foods, exclusively.

Merrick told us, "As Tree House’s exclusive feeding partner, Merrick will provide all of the meals to each resident cat, including Merrick Purrfect Bistro."

"From their first meal at both of Tree House’s Chicago Adoption Centers (Uptown and Bucktown) until adoption day, each Tree House cat will enjoy healthy, recipes made in Merrick’s kitchens with locally sourced USDA-inspected deboned meat, fresh produce and high-quality protein.

"Merrick uses no ingredients from China – all of the ingredients are fresh, regionally sourced in the United States and made in Merrick’s own kitchen."

Have you heard about Tree House Humane?

The first thing we love about Tree House is that their focus is on the care and placement of stray cats with special physical and emotional needs. Second, they strive to educate the public about proper and responsible animal care, and are committed to finding every healthy and treatable animal a home and they believe wholeheartedly in a No-Kill nation.

We thank Merrick for their kind donation, which goes a long way toward helping cats find their forever homes in the Chicago area.


FTC Disclosure: Our Extreme Feline Makeover series is sponsored by Merrick Pet Care, and we have received both food and a small fee to compensate us for each post. This covers the time it takes to take photos and write our progress reports. Every sponsored post on A Tonk's Tail will always reflect our honest and unbiased opinions. Merrick Pet Care is not responsible for the content of this article, and Grammy’s Pot Pie is not specifically formulated for weight management. This effort is part of an overall health and wellness regime for Allie. And a totally surprising and unexpected bonus for us: for Maxwell's health and wellness too! SCORE!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Not so easy Sunday ...?

We hope your Sunday's a bit easier than Allie's!

Faraday: Snooze ya lose!   *snicker*


Sunday's Shelter Sweetie: Nora!

"My story would be sad if it were not for the fact that it resulted in me getting brought here to Great Plains SPCA."

"I do want to share a bit of it though, so that my family to be has a little understanding of how I came to be here.

Me and my three kittens were dumped off in a carrier together by people who obviously wanted to make sure we were found and cared for.

Once here, we got the best of care. That has made it possible for us to each go forward to become loved members of a family that chooses us to join them.

I am ready to set out on the path to adoption, and hope to quickly find myself walking through my new home. My needs will be those of any other feline house companion, with the little extra condition that my fur will need a couple gentle brushings each week.

Ready to share all my love, I look forward to meeting you really soon!


Nora is available at the Merriam Campus of Great Plains SPCA, along with hundreds and hundreds of her shelter mates!