Monday, 13 September 2021

Loose Ends

I left you dangling on the cat litter issue so here is an update.

Thanks to all your comments, I had a few suggestions to try. Not all brands are available near me, but I found two clumping clay litters.

The first one I bought turned out to be scented. There were so many things to read on the box, the fact that it did not expressly say "unscented" escaped me. Scents are one thing Lucy cat is sensitive to, so I tried it with Meredith cat only. She aggressively sniffed it over and over, got it up her nose and sneezed and coughed. I left it for a day, thinking she'd get used to it and stop sniffing it, hence stopping the sneezing and coughing, but that didn't happen.

So I put it in an old dishpan and set it in the closet where the dead mouse smell is still lingering. I don't like just covering up smells but I thought maybe, just maybe, the litter would absorb the odour instead. Still working on that.

In the meantime, I bought another clumping litter which I made sure was labelled "unscented". 

Meredith cat did the same thing - sniffed aggressively, sneezed, etc. Over and over. It was pretty dusty, and tracked terribly. Both cats used it once, then ignored it.

After a couple of days I surrendered and put it in the compost, which is how we are instructed to dispose of kitty litter here. Which is a whole different post; maybe some day I'll tackle that.

Then I checked into wood pellets online, because I couldn't find them locally, and read that if they are not specifically made for cats the wood can contain essential oils that are poisonous to cats. You are apparently supposed to check with the manufacturer of horse and small pet bedding pellets to make sure they've sufficiently kiln-dried the pellets to reduce the oils to an acceptable level. Since I already have enough to worry about, AND since I have zero trust in manufacturers telling me the truth, AND since I'd have to order online exclusively, I decided not to go any further with that option.

In the meantime, I was able to find more of the new style Yesterday's News litter at my local Wal-Mart. 

And because I had already spent the better part of $30 on litter I couldn't use, I have to confess -- I bought it. Because as bad as it is compared to the original pellets, I do prefer it to the clay litters. And I suspect it will be available on a long-term basis, as this is the second batch I've found at the local Wal-Mart. Hopefully our grocery store will start to carry it, too, so I can pick it up easily with my weekly groceries.

This puts me in a bit of a quandry, though.

When the manufacturer emailed me asking for my address so they could send me some coupons for the new Yesterday's News, I told them I wouldn't be buying any of it so I wouldn't need their stinkin' coupons. I did not actually say "stinkin'", but I thought it, loudly. 

I know there is no way for them to know if I'm buying their stuff or not, but I was still planning to reply to their final email to me, which was exceedingly polite and apologetic but ultimately useless.

I do believe in giving credit where credit is due, and would like them to know I at least appreciated their extreme politeness, but how can I do that without also telling the rest of the story -- which is (1) that they gave me misleading information and (2) that although the new product sucks, it doesn't suck as bad as the other products I have tried?

Which is also complicated by the fact that one of the clay litters I tried is another of their products, so that's awkward.

I'm thinking I'll take the coward's way out and just not bother writing back.

*****

I also left you dangling on the dead mouse smell in my closet. Sorry if you didn't want reminded but I don't like to leave loose ends and I'm constantly doing so.

The smell is still kind of there, but I've boarded the hole in the wall back up and along with the pan of (clean) kitty litter in there, hopefully absorbing some of the smell, maybe I can put everything back in the closet soon. I really hope so, because if the house caught fire right now and the firefighters had to get in to the room where I'm storing all the closet stuff, they'd never make it.

*****

If you're also wondering how things are with my mother, that's going to take a whole 'nother post. If you're not wondering, that's okay because it's going to be a whole 'nother post and you can just skip it.

*****

It's time for some funnies. I'm returning to photo memes, because the Charlie Berens video didn't go over awfully well with about fifty per cent of readers. I wonder if it might be partly a language problem. As I replied to some commenters, part of what I like about Berens' humour is his use of colloquialisms, which don't translate easily to other countries, even English-speaking countries. And he does talk fast and has an accent. I realize it just might be a difference of taste, as well. But I have found in the past that videos from other countries are harder for me to follow due to the accents and in-jokes, so I'm hoping that's all it was for Charlie's humour too. I do aim to please, here!

I hope these pictures translate better :)

 

 






 

And some Dear Diary cat funnies:
















Aaaaaand ... bringing us back full circle ...



Have a good week, my friends.




32 comments:

  1. The song of our people is one I have OFTEN heard. And it is impossible to either sleep through or ignore.
    Indeed many of the Dear Diary entries could have been written by or for Jazz.
    Huge sigh on the kitty litter front. For you and for the cats.

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    1. Maybe Jazz IS writing those diary entries ... do you ever check your computer history? *cue opening music from Jaws*

      You're so right about not being able to sleep through or ignore cat meowing. They have perfected the wake up call.

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  2. Looking forward to a 'nother mother post.

    I haven't seen those 'Dear Diary' cats before.

    Cat litter doesn't seem to be like pet food where you don't have to cater to the fussy eaters as animals do not starve to death if food is available, but the repercussions of cat unhappy with its litter could be very bad.

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    1. The wrong litter can be very bad indeed. I put the trial litter in just one of the pans available to both my cats, so they could clearly state their preference :)

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  3. It must be frustrating to no end about the kitty litter. We often use baking soda to absorb smells. It does work well but I don’t know if it would help with dead mouse.

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    1. I think the only thing that really helps with dead mouse is time :)

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  4. Love the cat cartoons! 😂

    "If you're also wondering how things are with my mother, that's going to take a whole 'nother post. If you're not wondering, that's okay because it's going to be a whole 'nother post and you can just skip it."

    Hey...if you need to talk, talk. I have a mother too.

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    1. I do need to talk, as much as I don't like to. Stay tuned. And maybe you'll tell me about your mother in the comments!

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  5. the second meme took me into your position at once and i felt that situation is critical as pet looked quite serious oh my .

    i hope the cats get used to you latest litter box .and hope that wasted new litter box proves useful if it lessens the smell at least .
    i hope that you put everything in closet so God forbid any emergency can be resolved immediately .

    yes i always have your mother in my mind because her behavior resembles to mine when she was in her last living year (sigh)
    i would like to learn how is she doing and if she stepped back from her demanding behavior specially going out for shopping or driving .
    i enjoyed memes though i found them little less funny may be it is because of my low iq .
    keeping you in thoughts and prayers dear Jenny !
    please keep taking great care precious friend!

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    1. I will try to bring folks up to date on my mom. It's becoming stressful again and I think if I write about it I might see solutions I would otherwise miss.

      Don't worry about the memes, baili. They are not to everyone's taste! It has nothing to do with IQ at all; it has to do with cat behavior and are probably funnier if you live with a cat and see their behavior up close!

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  6. I do often wonder, when I'm picking up Olga's poo, if she wonders what on earth I'm up to!

    I may have told you this already, but I used to buy a kind of litter called Feline Pine, made of wood pellets. It was pretty fantastic and the pellets turned to sawdust with use. It tracked much less than the clay, which was a tracking nightmare.

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    1. You mentioned Yesterday's News but not Feline Pine. Maybe I'll reconsider that avenue now that I have a product name to work with. I find the choices online to be overwhelming!

      Yeah, what do animals really think about us picking up their poo, I wonder?!

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  7. Thank you for the updates. It's always great to hear from you whatever the subject. I do hope the situation with your mother is at least a bit better.

    Sorry to hear about all the litter problems. I guess my cats do okay with the litter I use because it's all they have ever used and they are used to it so they don't like other litters. As to whether or not to write the litter manufacturer back, I would say that is up to you personally. You certainly don't have to write them. If it would make you feel better then you could just write thanking them for their kind letter. You could say that you are now using their pellet litter because it is all you can find made like that. You could still add that you and your cats much preferred the previous litter and hope they will consider bringing it back. I think it's important for them to know their customers don't like the new change. You can enclose your address with your signature but you may not get coupons sent to you. My feeling is that they likely will get many complaints from other cat parents and sometimes enough customer response can make a difference.

    Your funnies translate perfectly and I love them! The first three especially are regular occurrences in our household. Every time I scoop the box they look at me like I'm stealing from them!

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    1. I'll think about your suggestion for a letter to the company - the thing is, I've already said that (in my first email!) so I would be repeating myself. But maybe it wouldn't hurt to make the point again, and it would give me a chance to comment favourably on their polite approach.

      I can just see your cats watching you scoop. lol

      Mine watch me like they're making sure the junior employee gets the job done right :D

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  8. The one good thing about dogs over cats...I never have to clean a litter box or worry about litter tracks over the floor. However, I do have to walk with the dog and collect all droppings on an individual basis. And woe betide the human who does not let them outside when it's 'time to go'. Hmm . . . suddenly a litter box is looking more and more desirable...

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    1. Yes, even with all the accompanying issues, I'm glad my pets use a litter box and don't need to go out in all weather! Although if they "go" when I'm asleep it can be smelly! (one cat doesn't cover her business - imagine a cat that does that!)

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  9. So, I just ordered 30 pounds of Yesterday News non-clumping litter for my cat and when I asked about it being discontinued, the woman said she had no notice of it being discontinued though there have been supply issues. Still available at Chewy.com and Amazon when I looked. Sending hugs.

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    1. That's weird! Maybe the company is just discontinuing it in Canada? I was told it was a supply issue at my grocery store but when I went on the company website it said it was no longer being manufactured. I hope you can continue getting it even if I can't. I'll check those websites again - thanks, e.

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  10. Those funnies, yes! That's the cats here. They were fussing over their bowls just a moment ago.

    It's sad that there aren't any other newspaper based pellet litters, it sounds like a great way to recycle the papers.

    Write about your mother, it can be cathartic.

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    1. I've always thought the newspaper litter was a perfect idea; too often there is no market or not enough market for recycled items. But to my knowledge Purina is the only company that makes it. It's definitely the only product we've seen around here. The discontinuation seems to be an issue of the pellets versus the crushed form; the company said there wasn't enough demand for the pellets.

      I want to write about my mom but I worry that I will not write with empathy. I am just so frustrated and tired of dealing with the problems alone.

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  11. The "Actual image of my cat leaving his litter box" is Littlebeast all of the way. There are white specks all up the side of the vanity, the door frame, and the refrigerator (which is just outside the door). I leave a damp sponge on the vanity to clean up after the rubble in his wake...
    Hope things with your mom work out better, and thanks for the update.

    -Doug in Sugar Pine

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    1. Why do cats roar out of their litter boxes like that?! It seems all too common a complaint! Good idea to keep that sponge handy. That clumping litter dries like a rock.

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  12. Aww, all those poor kitties. I'm glad I never close my bedroom door since Lola likes to sleep in or on my bed.
    I hope the dead mouse smell soon disappears.

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    1. You and me both, River - hah

      Some cats are very pushy when allowed to sleep with their humans. One of ours is like that - she would crawl inside your body if she could. I find it disturbs my sleep. Since the cats here need to be kept in separate areas, I sit with her to read, and then sleep with the other one, the one who keeps her distance but likes the distance to be not too distant :)

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  13. It's nice to hear from you again, even though it not so nice to hear about your cat litter problems. Eating one's own words is hard fare, I too would take the cowards way out here. Thanks for the funnies. I home your "mother-problems" will find a solution.

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    1. We call that "eating humble pie" or "eating crow" in English, and you're right, it's not easy :D

      I'm hoping that by writing about my mother problems I may stumble on a solution, because it's becoming very stressful again. Stand by for a post coming soon!

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  14. Sometimes it feels like life is nothing but loose ends. Some days I am willing to tie them up. Other days I just let them fly in the wind.

    Don't feel too bad about the $30 on kitty litter your felines won't use. Think about the $4k fence we put up in the backyard, only to have the dog decide he will wait for his Dad to come home from work each day and walk him around the neighborhood to do his business. One way or another, we are always picking up someone's sh!t, eh? :)

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    1. Now there's an unvarnished truth :)
      And I do feel better about the $30 now ... and feel for you with your fence!

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  15. I was hopeful that you would have had better luck with your litter dilemma. Sorry. And I would definitely take the coward's way out as well with the manufacturer. Have a good week too, jenny_o.

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    1. Thanks, Mr. S. And stay tuned for an EXCITING new instalment of the kitty litter chronicles, coming soon! The short version is that I found another newspaper pellet litter - yay!

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  16. "Why do you need all this poo?" - I'm still laughing!

    I'm sure the cat litter manufacturer doesn't expect a reply, so no obligation there. Particularly since it STILL isn't the product you want; even though you might end up using it under protest.

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    1. Yeah, I can't figure out if I want to thank them or if I'm just looking for an excuse to tell them AGAIN that the new product sucks :) Best not to write if it's just to do the latter ...

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