Category Archives: Vazra Photos

A comparison of two cats

This is an exercise in betterment identification as recognized through fur.

Do you remember the first photographs I posted of Vazra?  They’re here.

For the sake of comparison, especially to identify how much better he is after his capture, here is one photo from that set along with a new photo of him (captured at the same time as this video).

Both are linked to hi-res versions.  Doesn’t he already look better, and this long before his coat refreshes based on a stable environment and proper nutrition?

First, the before:

Vazra sitting on the fence (144_4452)

And now, the after:

Vazra sitting by the door (150_5073)

His first weekend

A close-up of Vazra (150_5063)

I am amazed with the ease of Vazra‘s integration thus far.  There have been no significant fights, although there has been a bit of hissing and growling, not to mention a few swings here and there.  He will generally growl if someone sneaks up on him while he’s sleeping or trying to rest.  He has only hissed at Kako after she hissed at him.  Other than some swings at her in self-defense, he only initiated a few swings at Grendel because I’d already worked him into a fit by brushing him (he likes being brushed until I have to take his belly, chest, and the bottom of his hind legs by force).

I expected more from The Kids.  Not that I’m a glutton for punishment, you understand, or that I wish all manner of feline violence upon this household, but this is their territory and their home.  He’s the invader.  Yet there has not been a single prominent altercation since his arrival.

Still, I like to think my parenting skills are expert and robust enough to have instilled tolerance and respect in each of them, and therefore I am worthy of praise and adoration.

Of course, one need only look at Kako to understand how absurd that premise is.  She hits me if I point at her.  No, I’ve never abused her.  In fact, she’s always been Daddy’s Girl.  She just doesn’t put up with anyone’s bullshit.  And to her, any opinion contrary to hers is bullshit, so you see where we go from there.

Despite her claim to divinity, and irrespective of the presence of four cats prior to his capture and adoption, Vaza is just an easy-going, laid-back kind of cat.  That helps tremendously.  But it doesn’t solve all of the problems.

The Kids are comfortable, confident, and collusive.  They are the master predators in this home.  They know it.  Remarkably, they are so comfortable in their supremacy that they have been suspiciously receptive to the introduction of another adult feline.  A kitten would be a different story, but an adult?

And yet here we are.  Vazra has not been isolated since his original food and water restriction overnight when he got home.  Aside from that, he has been free to do as he pleases.  This has not disrupted sleep (any more than he already did, mind you, but not for the rest of The Kids).  It has not altered how anyone acts.  Treats have not been suspended.  Lap and shoulder time have not disappeared.  Where we sit, rest, and sleep has not changed.  Play has not been altered.  Kisses are still kisses.  Snuggles under the covers are still a part of most sleep periods.  Life goes on.  It’s amazing.

Jenny mentioned recently she’d like me to manage any future cat integrations she required.  The thought scared me to death.  I had tremendous fear about Vazra’s arrival.  For the entire time I worked on capturing him, I cringed at the thought of bringing him inside and dealing with the perpetual aftermath.  Adult cats are set in their ways, and all cats like structure and predictability.  What in the world caused this group to be so accepting of a new member from the very first day they met him?

This is unnatural.  I couldn’t appreciate it more.

Oh, and he already has a favorite sleeping spot when he’s not with me on the couch or floor, in the bed, or at the desk.

Vazra sleeping in his favorite place (150_5083)

And here’s Vazra

As promised, here are some photos of Vazra.  What you’ll notice throughout is the condition of his fur: terrible.  While I can honestly say he looks better now than he did just a week or so ago, the knots are still there, not all of which are obvious, and what they’ve done to him is horrific.  There are places where a knot has rolled back through his coat and ripped out all the hair in the process, essentially leaving a racing stripe of bare skin in its wake.  Those spots are now starting to grow back in, but the knots remain intact — and I mean several of them spread over his entire body, as well as what I can’t see on his tummy and under his legs.  This is why it’s imperative for me to get him to the vet for grooming.  Knots like this are extremely painful.  Imagine having your hair pulled 24 hours per day every day as it slowly rips itself out of your head; imagine those knots tracking across your body as they slowly entangle every bit of hair around them; imagine anything that touches those knots causes the pain to increase manyfold; imagine losing your protection from the elements as your hair rips itself out of your body in more than half-a-dozen places simultaneously.  That is Vazra’s current existence.

The first one is of him sitting on the fence after enjoying some dinner and a whole lotta lovin’.  If you click on the photo, you’ll see a high resolution version that makes it easier to see one of the large knots in his fur.  It’s on his right side just in front of his tail (in this picture, that would be just above his tail).  That’s the knot that literally stripped all of the fur off of his right side.  That’s why it looks so ragged and disheveled; the fur is just beginning to grow back in, but the bald spot (literally his entire side) is still quite visible.

Vazra sitting on the fence (144_4452)

There’s always time for a bit of something to eat, right?

Vazra having some dinner on the patio (144_4445)

Here’s another one of him eating that was taken from the other side.  Again, click on it for a hi-res version that better shows the enormous knot and stripped fur on that side of his body.  What you see is the knot there at his ass end and the nearly exposed skin along his entire side.  The knot apparently started just behind his neck and has worked its way to the opposite end of his body by ripping out all the hair along the way.  Major ouch.

Vazra grabbing a bit to eat on the patio (144_4446)

Here’s one that shows one of the knots on his neck (the black ball in the center of the picture).  Again, click on it for a closer look.

Vazra looking out from the patio (144_4450)

And one more of him sitting on the fence.  A mockingbird saw him and flew into the tree to taunt Vazra and, should an opportunity present itself, attack him as well.  That’s why Vazra’s looking up into the tree, a position he held for some time after this photo was taken while he and the bird decided just how far they wanted to take this.  Eventually, even though the bird continued mocking him from the tree, my new feline friend lost interest, jumped down, and went on about his business.  The mockingbird chased him as you’d expect; Vazra just ignored it and continued on his way.

Vazra sitting on the fence watching a mockingbird in the tree (144_4451)