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Rare Pairs

I heard one of the funniest stories about crazy animal pairings last week, right up there with that infamous elephant and dog story. (If you haven’t seen this, finish reading this blog first, of course, then grab a hanky and get ready to laugh and cry.)  The story I heard was also spawned by a rare pair such as that.      

Unusual BFF's-Simon and Cottontail

 

Every Wednesday, I take the SPCA Tampa Bay Pet/s of the Week on WQYK and WILD radio stations and on the Studio 10 daytime program to help get them adopted.  Last Wednesday I brought Cottontail the rabbit and Simon the guinea pig and their back story is seriously precious. This unusual pair was brought up together and are best friends. They live and travel in the same cage and in the first 15 minutes I spent with them I watched Simon burrow his tiny furry head into Cottontail’s side and fall asleep, THEN Cottontail used her teeth to pull a blanket over Simon like she was keeping him warm. I about died from the adorableness. (Is that even a word? If not, it totally should be.)   

So while the totally awesome twosome and I were hanging out in the radio station’s lobby, one of the employees approached me and when she heard about Cottontail and Simon’s rare friendship she told me she had an even crazier tale to tell.  She has an 8 month old Doberman puppy and his best friend is, (drumroll please)…a frog. How hilarious is that??        

Could this be your dog's next best friend??

 

 She told me it started a few months ago when she woke up to find her puppy had a new addition in his crate in the form of a sleeping frog. Thinking the  reptile had seriously wandered off course from her backyard, through the open sliding glass doors and through the crate’s bars, (and had gotten seriously lucky that he hadn’t become breakfast for the Doberman,) she shooed the little guy back into the yard and didn’t give it another thought.   

 That is, until the next morning when she discovered the same strange scene. This continued for a couple of weeks.  She’d put the frog outside each day but he’d unfailingly show back up each morning, either in the crate, in the dog’s food dish, and once, even on the landing of the staircase like he was headed up to their bedroom for a little snuggle. At first, she was just puzzled and a little amused, then she remembered hearing about some kind of toad that was poisonous to dogs, and she got pretty freaked out.   

 That’s when she got serious about the relocation process and had her husband take the frog several yards down to drop him off. Can you guess what happened next?  They then took the frog a whole block away, (do you know just how far that distance is for a frog??) but that persistent little bugger still found his way back somehow and was waiting next to his best friend to greet them the next day. At that point, she gave in. She did some research and determined the frog wasn’t the poisonous kind and considering the lengths he was willing to go to be with her puppy, she figured what was the harm? Sometimes there’s just no standing in the way of BFF’s.   

So cute! Sweetie grooms his buddy Louie

 

That story got me thinking about the various pairings-up of my animals. Unfortunately, none of my pets are BFF’s or really even FF’s. They basically just all tolerate each other, but occasionally I’m happily surprised to see two of them chumming around.  The cutest coupling is Louie and Sweetie.  Since he spent his first few years as a feral cat with very little interaction or affection, Sweetie takes forever to warm up to anyone, two-legged or four-legged. So the first time I  stumbled upon Sweetie purring contentedly while Louie licked and groomed his head, I freaked out and took about a hundred pictures. I took double that number when I discovered the tables had turned and Sweetie was the one doing the grooming on Louie. They don’t do it very often, and sometimes it devolves into a catfight, but it still thrills me every time I catch them cuddling up.   

Louie's cleaning fetish means he sleeps in the sink!

Louie must be a stickler for cleanliness because another pairing I’ll run across from time to time is Louie and our dog Maho.  When they’re not chasing each other for fun or struggling for the second in command position of power in the house, (Rhett being, of course, the long-running, undisputed head of the household,) Maho will suddenly decide that Louie’s crazy long hair needs to be tamed by her doggie tongue. Louie will lay there for a good minute, meowing sweetly while Maho laps at him like he’s a peanut butter bone.  But after that first minute, Louie’s tolerance takes a nosedive and his meows get increasingly more annoyed until they become more of a warning signal that he’s about to unleash his paws of fury.  Maho usually takes no notice at all and keeps right on licking until the inevitable happens and she takes an actual ‘lickin” from Louie.    

Rhett rarely pairs up with anyone...

 

...but he'd befriend Ally to take on a shared enemy.

 

And finally, even though Rhett rarely hangs out with any of his fellow animals, he would sometimes deign to pair up with his late sister Ally to take on a bigger enemy: The dog. None of the cats were thrilled when we brought Maho home as a 10 week old puppy, but as the two oldest and most set in their way of the bunch, Rhett and Ally were the most up in arms.  Sometimes it wasn’t enough for them to take her on one on one, so they’d gang up on her just to make sure she was well aware of their disdain.  It was quite comical to see Maho go flying by and a second later, Rhett and Ally running in tandem after her, hissing and howling and generally raising heck. 

  If you have any crazy animal couple tales to tell, we’d love to hear about them on the Adopt-a-human facebook page.  The page promotes the adoption of shelter cats and the more friends and interaction on the site, the more animals’ lives we can save!

Hug-your-Cat Day Winners!

Wow!  I’m well aware of what a crazy cat lady I am.  But I had no clue how many others are out there!  And crazy cat dudes too.  Hee.  Now, I’m just kidding when I call you crazy, but I’m totally sincere when I say I was so overwhelmed at how many awesome cat owners took part in our Hug-your-Cat day photo contest on our Adopt-a-human facebook page.  We had more than 60 submissions, all of them totally hilarious, outrageously cute or super sweet.  

And our cat owners’ friends came through in a big way, to vote and ‘like’ their favorites to get them to the top ten for final judging and the big prize.  In fact, we had more than 1000 hits in just four days as people got a good laugh and kick out of the funny felines you all submitted to our contest.  Our big thanks to Holley Sinn and Jerome Ritchey at Studio 10 who had the seriously tough job of picking the top three pictures and the ultimate winner.  (So send your cat hate mail to them. ha!)  Without further ado, here are the top three winners: 

beckett

Beckett in bed

 

One of my personal faves came in at #3 and falls in the totally hilarious category.  Beckett apparently needs a bit of a bigger bed because his current one is having a tough time containing his bulk.  At 27 pounds, Beckett is giving his mom, Kaaren Kane Page the evil eye in this pic, as if to say, ‘Really??? This is a bed for those anorexic size 0 cats! Not a big boned beauty like me.  Get with the program woman!”   At the very least Beckett, your mom won you a basket full of goodies from the SPCA Tampa Bay boutique and yes, we’ll make sure there are plenty of food goodies in there. Feel better? 

pirate

Pirate and Teddy

 

Coming in at second place, and at a very young age for such a big honor, Pirate the kitten!  Oh, and we must give props to Pirate’s teddy bear as well, since he sorta makes the pic, no?  We’re told by Pirate’s foster mom and the very skilled photographer of this shoot, Stephanie Monti, that Pirate wuv’ed his teddy so much and hated to be separated from him.  You can see the love in those amazing big blue eyes of his can’t you?  I’d say this totally falls into the outrageously cute category and it also won Stephanie and Pirate a cat basket of goodies. 

mama cat

mama cat and baby

 

And finally, (drumroll please) we have our winning photo, ‘Mama cat and baby.’  I can hear the oooohs and awwwwws already.  There’s just something so super sweet about the love in a mama cat’s eyes for their baby kittens.  And that kitty is soooooo tiny!  Rich Marker is the proud winner of this picture and this mama cat, and if he’s anything like me, (super softie) he’s also still the owner of that kitten.  

You’ll get to meet Rich and mama cat next Wednesday on Studio 10.  As part of top prize pack, Rich gets to show off his picture and his cat with me and Holley and Jerome, plus receive a SUPER size cat goodie basket from our SPCA Tampa Bay boutique.  Congratulations to Rich and to all our winners!  And thanks to everyone for taking part.  If you’d like to see all the pictures head to our Adopt-a-human Facebook page. The more people who become fans of Adopt-a-human and SPCA Tampa Bay, interact with us and spread our message, the more shelters cats that are adopted and saved.  You CAN make a difference.