Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Lifesavers


Young Living Animal Scents Collection

This past Friday was the happiest I've ever been to own the Young Living Animal Scents collection. First thing Friday morning, well before dawn, we let the dogs outside and fed them. Then, while I was rushing to get the kids on the bus, I heard a sort of shriek. I thought it came from outside and wondered for a second if it was one of the dogs, but dismissed it, telling myself it must have been our bird. A few minutes later, however, our dogs were banging themselves into the door, clearly all upset. When we let them in we saw our Spitz had a big bloody welt on his back. I inspected it and didn't see any teeth marks, so I didn't think it was a bite, but I can't imagine what else it could be. By that time the sun was coming up so it was light enough to see. I walked around the yard looking for what might have happened but I couldn't find anything. I put the kids on the bus and then came in to see what I could do for the Spitz. Our kitten was spayed last month and I had mixed up some PuriClean wash and a MendWell and InfectAway roll-on to care for her incision. I still had a lot left, so I was able to quickly clean the wound. Then I applied the roll-on to help boost healing. Two hours later, other than the oily patch of hair, there was no sign of the welt. The dog has been fine ever since. I was so glad I had the oils on had and that I had some pre-mixed for emergencies! Little did I know, I would be even happier about it as the weekend progressed.


Our sick cat

On Friday night our neighbor who works in animal rescue posted a plea for help because she said a litter of Himalayan kittens had been abandoned and needed homes immediately. When I was a teenager we had a Himalayan cat who had kittens. My husband took one of the kittens. Since we both had Himalayans, and they were very sweet cats, so we both have a soft spot for them. So even though we hadn't been thinking of getting another cat we called and asked to see the cats. Saturday morning we got up and went to the Humane Society and found out it wasn't a litter of kittens abandoned, but 12 former show cats. A woman bred these cats and showed them, but then she died and her husband stopped taking care of them. It looks like he just put them in a pen outside for a while. Finally he took them all and surrendered them to Animal Control. These are older cats, so if they hadn't been purebreds they would probably have been put down, but since they are obviously valuable, Animal Control asked if the Humane Society would take them.

When we saw the cats, I have to admit I quailed at the thought of taking one. They were all sick with coughs and running eyes and noses and they were absolutely filthy. These are cats with long, long hair, and nearly all of them were caked with red clay and feces. Their coats were horribly matted, too, almost felted in fact. I just couldn't stand the thought of leaving these formerly pampered cats there without at least helping one, though. It was as if a bunch of princesses had been dumped on the street! We chose the friendliest one, who ranked just about in the middle of the pride in terms of filthiness, and who was the only one to have already been spayed. Since we took one before they were groomed they gave us a deal on the adoption fee. We figured we would have to hire a professional groomer. We brought her home and told our teenager we got him a tribble, since she's just a ball of fur. Our youngest looked at her and asked, "What is it?". Since we already have the kitten named Oreo, the kids named this one Snickers.


Homemade Pet Products

Saturday night, however, I started petting Snickers and brushing her and found she loves to be brushed. Now that I have observed her more, I think the only time she ever was held was during grooming. She was clearly groomed a bunch; she's a pro at it! I decided to try to clean her up myself and figured I could call a groomer if it was too much of a challenge for me. Since I grew up with a Himalayan and we have a Sheltie and a Spitz, extremely fluffy dogs, I do have a lot of experience with long haired animals. I made cleaning wipes by spraying my PuriClean spray on paper towels an wiping her down with those. The PuriClean spray is about 2 cups of water, 1/2 cup of witch hazel, and 3 drops of PuriClean essential oil. It's super-diluted and gentle since I made it initially for a kitten, so I even used it on Snickers' face. Snickers tolerated that well, so I made up a de-tangling spray for her matted coat. This was half a can of coconut milk, 1/4 cup of witch hazel, about 1.5 cups of water, and three drops of PuriClean. I shake this up and spray it on the brush or the fur before brushing. It's a leave-in and cleans and conditions at the same time. I sprayed this all over Snickers' back and brushed her out. On Sunday I decided to try to give Snickers a "sanitary clip". This is where you shave the bottom, tummy, and insides of the legs to keep the animal clean or to clean up a dirty animal. Snickers needed this badly, and also had to be  shaved all under her chin and neck, where dirt and food had congealed in her fur and matted it irreparably. She could barely walk because she had huge mats on the soles of all her feet, so these had to be shaved as well. My husband I took turns shaving her and we gave her lots of treats and breaks in between sessions, and she tolerated it quite well. When we were finished removing the mats my son and I washed her, mostly on her underside, in the sink with pet shampoo (not homemade). Then we gave her a blow dry with the hair dryer.




The cat after cleaning.


Now that we can see her face, we see Snickers is a lovely girl. She still has a couple small mats here and there, but we are working on those slowly. Her cold is improving. I am applying a mixture of 3 drops each MendWell and InfectAway diluted in flaxseed oil (the same roll-on I used on the kitten and dog) between her shoulder blades twice daily to help her fight off the bug. Since she's a "plated-face" or "peeked face" cat she's prone to congestion and runny eyes, so I wash her face with a PuriClean wipe daily.

I am actually thrilled we adopted this cat. In fact, now I wish we'd taken more than one. If I'd known we wouldn't have to pay for grooming I would have! Snickers is one of the most affectionate cats I've ever known. She would like to just be cuddled all day. It's like having a living teddy bear, and she acts just like you imagine a teddy bear would if it were alive. She just snuggles and cuddles and purrs and purrs. She looks, in fact, just like the Princess Kneesa ewok plush I owned as a girl, except she's real! It's really nice because now we have a playful kitten (who rarely lets us hold her) and a lap cat. The kitten is not happy at all to have another cat in the house, but she seems to be coming around. We hope they'll eventually be friends. I doubt Snickers ever got to play much as a kitten. Sometimes she will look at a cat toy and kind of lift her paw, but it's like she doesn't know what to do. I also doubt she ever got much affection; I think that's why she came to enjoy being groomed so much. It's a good thing, because a fur ball like this needs a good brushing every single day!

You can buy the Animal Scents collection from Young Living or sign up as a member and get it at the wholesale price on my Web site. Now that I have this collection I can't imagine owning pets without it!

There will be nine more of these cats available soon from the Humane Society of Iredell County, NC, so please contact them if you are interested in providing one with a loving home.

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