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For the Love of Cats: An A-to-Z Primer for Cat Lovers of All Ages
     

For the Love of Cats: An A-to-Z Primer for Cat Lovers of All Ages

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by Sandy Robins, Mark Anderson (Illustrator)
 

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Expressing the passion felt for pets using all 26 letters of the alphabet accompanied by rhymes, colorful illustrations, and informative text, this tribute to cats explores the feline obsession in a fresh and humorous way. Readers will enjoy fun facts about the intelligent, affectionate, complicated, and independent pets that curl up in laps and bound through

Overview


Expressing the passion felt for pets using all 26 letters of the alphabet accompanied by rhymes, colorful illustrations, and informative text, this tribute to cats explores the feline obsession in a fresh and humorous way. Readers will enjoy fun facts about the intelligent, affectionate, complicated, and independent pets that curl up in laps and bound through the house with elegant acrobatics.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"A beautiful book and you won't go wrong  purchasing it as a gift."  —I Have Cat 

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781600785818
Publisher:
Triumph Books
Publication date:
09/11/2011
Pages:
48
Product dimensions:
11.10(w) x 11.00(h) x 0.60(d)

Related Subjects

Read an Excerpt

For the Love of Cats


By Sandy Robins, Mark Anderson

Triumph Books

Copyright © 2011 Sandy Robins
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-60078-581-8


CHAPTER 1

In ancient times cats were worshipped as gods; they have not forgotten this. –BRITISH AUTHOR TERRY PRATCHETT


"A" IS FOR Adored

BY THE ANCIENT EGYPTIANS, ACCORDING TO STATUES AND ENTOMBED INSCRIPTIONS.


Unlike other domestic animals such as the dog and the horse, the cat is self-domesticated. It's history shows that it chose to live in close proximity to people and this relationship dates back 10,000 years to the first settlers in Mesopotamia, the area also known as the Cradle of Civilization, in the Middle East. During the New Kingdom Era in Egypt some 3,000 years ago, cats were so adored by ancient Egyptians that they believed that the common cat was the reincarnation of Bast, the goddess of the fertility, love, pleasure, and dance and protector of all evil. Felines were so revered that the punishment for hurting or killing a cat was death.

The smallest feline is a masterpiece.–LEONARDO DA VINCI


"B" IS FOR Breeds

IN COLORS RED, WHITE, AND BLUE. THE QUESTION TO ASK IS: WHICH ONE IS FOR YOU?


There are about 80 different cat breeds recognized around the world. Different cat registries independently recognize different breeds. In the U.S., The International Cat Association (TICA) recognizes 55 breeds while the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA) recognizes 41 breeds. Cat fanciers have their own "color palette" to describe coat colors. Red is commonly known as ginger or marmalade. "Blue" refers to gray. Lilac, lavender, and frost are all shades of light gray or dove gray. Chocolate is a dark rich brown and cinnamon is similar to the color of the spice. There is also special vocabulary to describe different coat patterns and shadings on the face (muzzle), paws, and tail. Learn more about the different cat breeds and their coat colors and markings at www.TICA.org and www.CFA.org.

As anyone who has ever been around a cat for any length of time well knows, cats have enormous patience with the limitations of the humankind. –CLEVELAND AMORY


"C" IS FOR Companion.

AS THE WORLD'S MOST POPULAR PET, CATS DEFINITELY ENJOY ALL THE ATTENTION THEY GET.


There are an estimated 600 million cats in the world. According to an organization called The CATalyst Council, cats are ranked as the world's number one companion animals. Currently American cat lovers tend to have two or more cats per household, an idea supported by behaviorists who believe that cats thrive on the companionship of both humans and other cats. The power of the purr has been recognized by the medical profession to have wonderful soothing qualities, aiding patients both young and old. Consequently, felines are becoming popular therapy pets visiting assisted living centers, hospitals, and children's homes. The Delta Society is a national organization that evaluates and trains people and their cats to become pet partners and arranges for them to do therapy work on a regular basis.

A man has to work so hard so that something of his personality stays a live. A tomcat has it so easy, he has only to spray and his presence is there for years on rainy days. –ALBERT EINSTEIN


"D" IS FOR Domain.

YOUR CAT OWNS YOUR FAVORITE CHAIR, WHETHER IT'S VACANT OR YOU'RE SITTING THERE.

All cats are, by nature, territorial. They have what's called a home range and a territory. A cat's home range is the area in which it is allowed to roam and, if allowed outdoors, can include quite a large area of the neighborhood. Its territory is much smaller and considered to be a safe environment with a plentiful food supply. So the food bowl is the very core of a cat's territory. Cats use scent messaging to stake their claim to an area. This is done in several ways; by rubbing up against an object using the scent glands on their paws or by chinning — rubbing the side of the mouth against an object. They do this to "claim" the people they love, too. They also use spraying urine and leaving feces as a method of leaving strong messages to other cats.

E is also for the Earth's vibrations, which a cat can feel before an earthquake is about to happen.


"E" IS FOR Events,

LIKE CHAMPION CAT SHOWS. SOME LOVE THE PAMPERING MORE THAN YOU KNOW.


Cat shows are held around the country every weekend. Whether it's a local, regional, or national show, the competition is fierce. Cat owners will spend hours grooming their cats at home beforehand and continue the grooming process right up until the moment their cat is presented to the judge. In America, most cat shows are held under the umbrella of The International Cat Association (TICA) or the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA). Each has its own rules for judging and awards. However, from a spectator's viewpoint, both TICA and CFA organized events are set up along similar lines. Rows of cages (the benching area) house the feline participants waiting to be judged in a number of show rings, each presided over by a judge and a clerk to keep a record of the proceedings. The judging in the various rings goes on concurrently. Cat shows are often two-day events.

My cat's breath smells like cat food. –RALPH, THESIMPSONS


"F" IS FOR Finicky

ESPECIALLY FOR FOOD. BUT IF A CAT TURNS ITS NOSE UP, DON'T THINK IT'S RUDE.


While cats are obligate carnivores, they sometimes have a palate for unusual tastes and will come and investigate the fruit and yogurt you are eating — or even your spaghetti Bolognese. Sometimes they appear to be turning their noses up at the food in the bowl but in fact they are "taste-scenting" their meal. There's an opening behind the nasal cavity that opens to the mouth called the Jacobson organ that allows them to taste-scent their food. To do this, the cat adopts a grimacing expression that appears as if it's turning up its nose in disgust. It's important to give each cat specially formulated foods to meet its specific dietary needs.

When I play with my cat, whok nows whether she is not amusing her self with me more than I with her. –MONTAIGNE


"G" IS FOR Games.

CATS LIKE TO PLAY A LOT WITH PAPERS AND STRINGS AND WHATEVER YOU'VE GOT.


Cats love to play games. Those that have an indoor lifestyle need to be compensated with lots of mental and physical stimulation in the form of toys and games. The pet industry has devised lots of wonderful playthings and activities to keep cats busy and, at the same time, hone their natural instincts to hunt. Engaging in play is a wonderful way to interact with your cat and establish a strong human-animal bond. Wands with fluttering objects on the end are excellent action toys. Distraction toys are those that will keep the cat engaged when home alone, for example a special track with a ball that spins around. Comfort toys include anything soft and cuddly for the cat to hunt and then carry around and possibly sleep next to. If you have a collection of toys, keep changing them around to keep things fresh.

Cats in the wild hunt at dawn and at dusk when small mammals are active.


"H" IS FOR Hunt.

CATS ARE BORN WITH THE SKILL AND WILL CARRY ON STALKING 'TIL THEIR PREY IS STILL.


Cats have a natural instinct to hunt and fish. They play games around the home, tossing things around as if they are fishing or pouncing on things as if they are hunting real prey. It's their natural instincts at work in a domestic setting. The cat's hunting behavior is a classic sequence of stalking its prey silently and patiently before pouncing on it and playing with it to tire it. This is essential because cats are solitary hunters and need their prey to be in a submissive state so that they can finally move in with a kill bite to the neck.

Read the directions and directly you will be directed in the right direction –DOORKNOB, ALICE IN WONDERLAND


"I" IS FOR Identification.

IN CASE THEY GET OUT, IT'S A TICKET BACK HOME — THAT'S WHAT IT'S ABOUT.


Cats get lost for a variety of reasons, from escaping through an open door or window to suddenly finding themselves stranded as a result of a natural disaster. Proper identification is a lost cat's ticket home. A microchip is the only form of pet identification that is permanent. It's a good idea for a cat to wear a collar and a tag, too. Cats that are out of their safe environment instantly go into survival mode and go silent to protect themselves from predators. Even the friendliest cat won't necessarily come when called. Depending on the cat's personality, they can remain close to home or travel within a five-block radius and hide for weeks. The best way of capturing a cat is with a humane baited trap.

A healthy cat can jump five times its own height.


"J" IS FOR Jump;

NOTHING'S OUT OF BOUNDS. JUST WATCH THEM LEAP IF THERE'S A HOUND AROUND.


Cats are natural jumpers and this innate agility allows them to escape out of trouble especially when being chased by predators. Sadly, through lack of exercise and bad diet, many cats are becoming couch potatoes; 40 percent of the feline population suffers from obesity. This impedes their ability to jump out of harm's way. However, as they age, even slim cats loose their ability to jump on to their favorite couch or bed. Help them maintain their independence by placing some pet steps alongside their favorite snooze zone so that they can access it on their own at all times.

No matter how much cats fight, there always seems to be plenty of kittens. –ABRAHAM LINCOLN


"K" IS FOR Kittens.

AND WE KNOW FULL WELL, WHEN IT COMES TO CAUSING CHAOS, THEY CERTAINLY EXCEL.


All kittens are born with their eyes shut. Their inherent sense of smell and touch enables them instinctively to find their mothers and suckle. By the time they are two weeks old, their eyes have opened and their fur has begun to fluff out. At three weeks old, they are strong enough to begin walking about and continue to grow quickly. At four weeks, their ears are upright; they can stand properly with their little tails in the air. At six weeks old, they are very alert, their inherent curiosity becomes apparent, and they begin to take interest in small toys and everything around them, climbing on things and falling off. The great feline exploration has begun! Ideally, a kitten should be around 12 weeks old when it leaves its mother.

L is also for label. The first three ingredients listed on a food label offer the most importance nutritional information.


"L" IS FOR Lucky.

IT'S ALSO FOR NINE LIVES, SURVIVING DEATH-DEFYING FEATS, AND IMPOSSIBLY HIGH DIVES.


Some believe the origin of this expression dates to ancient times when nine was considered a lucky number because it is the Trinity of Trinities. Feline resilience to injury led to the idea that cats have more than one life and thus the number nine seemed suited to describe a cat's survival rate. In terms of the laws of physics, a cat stands a greater chance of survival if it falls from a higher place than from a lower place. Any falling object, after traveling a certain distance through the air reaches a final speed, or "terminal velocity." Thus a cat falling from a higher floor, after it stops accelerating, spreads its legs into an umbrella shape, which increases the area against which the air must push and increases the friction, thus slowing its fall.

Cats are mysterious folk. There is more passing in their minds than we are aware of. -SIR WALTER SCOTT


"M" IS FOR Movie stars

OF A FELINE KIND. SLEWS OF REAL CATS AND CARTOON ONES QUICKLY COME TO MIND.


When it comes to feline movie stars, there are many A-List contenders such as Snowball, the beautiful Persian that graced the lap of James Bond's archnemesis Ernst Stavro Blofeld in several Bond films including From Russia with Love and Diamonds Are Forever. In the Austin Powers spoofs of this famous series, a Sphynx cat named Mr. Bigglesworth accompanies his alter ego Dr. Evil. Garfield, the orange, lasagna-eating, Monday-hating tabby created by Jim Davis appears in more than 2,600 newspapers worldwide. This cartoon cat has spawned a merchandizing empire and also made several full-length feature films. When it comes to movie star cartoon characters, the list of funny felines includes Tom with his sidekick mouse Jerry and the lisping Sylvester with his most famous expression, "Sufferin' succotash!"


(Continues...)

Excerpted from For the Love of Cats by Sandy Robins, Mark Anderson. Copyright © 2011 Sandy Robins. Excerpted by permission of Triumph Books.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

Sandy Robins is an award-winning pet lifestyle expert and a popular TV and radio guest. She is the author of Fabulous Felines: Health and Beauty Secrets for the Pampered Cat, and her work appears regularly on MSNBC.com and in various magazines. She lives in California. Mark Anderson is an illustrator whose work has appeared on the back cover of National Geographic, the New Yorker, and Time and inside the Atlantic Monthly, BusinessWeek, Harvard Business Review, Outside, and many other periodicals. He is the illustrator and designer of Triumph Books' popular For the Love of . . . series. His rescued-in-a-rainy-park cat Mary is often one of his inspirations. He lives in Chicago.

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