Jackson Galaxy Spirit Essences: Peacemaker

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I am always trying to find ways to make my fur children get along better- new toys, changing eating arrangements, litter box arrangements, even a few separation periods with slow reintroductions. Nothing really made any noticeable difference until now!

I received my Peacemaker in the mail about a 2 weeks ago and immediately began spraying it everywhere. It is recommended to add a few drops to their water bowl and food, and take a few drops in your hands and rub their bodies with it several times a day. Admittedly I am not following the recommended frequency, I dose their food with each meal (2 a day), and they get at least 2 body rubs a day but even this small effort is making a sizeable difference.

HOW IT WORKS

Spirit Essences are made to work with cats and dogs, so this is a great product with different kinds of animals. Our dog, Duke, is really sweet and loves the cats but I decided to put it on him too to see if it would improve the relationship he has with Coheed. Coheed seems to be more receptive to Duke than usual!

These Spirit Essences are each designed for different purposed but the over all feeling I get is that it calms down whatever undesirable behavior the animals express. I believe this works on 2 separate levels. Firstly the essence itself does have a clamming effect on the animal, giving off a smell that instinctively tells them everything is fine and secondly by having these essences on both animals it supplies a familiar sent they personally identify with.

In their minds, they smell the essence when I rub it into their fur and they think “Hey this smells good, and Mommy sure is giving me some good loving’- I feel good now!”. At each meal (the cats also have adjoining bowls) they smell the essence again, so now they think “I smell the goodness again and this time it smells like food too!”. Once they both begin to eat “Oh hey! Brother/sister smells like the goodness too!” The positive reinforcement they get from the essence in combination with the food is a huge convincing factor for me. The more the animals can associate an essence with food (or loving attention) the more receptive they will be to each other when they smell the same essence  on their sibling. Spraying the entire home helps to encourage them to keep this state of mind no matter where they travel. Spraying often helps to keep the essence fresh and the results strong.

 

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(Above left: Taz and Coheed, Summer 2012 Above Right: Coheed and Duke, Winter 2013)

 

MY RESULTS

I love them but my cats are kind of assholes! Taz has always been a bit of a bully to Coheed but now that he is bigger than her he will initiate a fight just as often. There was a brief period when Coheed was a few months old that they played nicely and snuggled well but ever since then its felt like they just tolerated each other. Now I feel like they are beginning to enjoy being in the other’s company.

I was a bit skeptical when ordering. I couldn’t believe that flower water could make a noticeable difference in their attitudes but I figured if it only helped a little that it would be worth it. The first few days they seemed to fight less often- I haven’t heard a hiss or growl in nearly 3 days now and that is huge!

I’m a believer now! I know these will come in handy when we move again and I’m so glad to have these tools to transition them with!

 

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Decoding Cat Behavior

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cat (Photo credit: Kenny Teo (zoompict))

Cats can be the most confusing creatures. But I hope that this can help shed some light on your cat’s curious antics.

Play Time Biting-

They want to play but end up attacking your hand. I believer there are 2 reasons for this: 1) they are over stimulated by your method of playing and see it as an attack, 2) they are responding to your hand with their natural instinct to play ‘kill the prey’ it’s the kind of playing you would see between two young siblings and is not intended to cause any damage to the playmate.

I think more often then not people think they are playing gently with their cat, in a way that would get the soft bite response when in reality their methods are most often in the first category. I see my husband doing this a lot with our fur children, one of whom tolerates his rough play and the other attacks or runs off faster than a bullet.

Look for cues from your cat to determine where they are emotionally. Pinned back ears, dilated eyes, hunched body are indicators that your cat is being overstimulated. Instead approach them calmly, point your finger at their nose and allow them to rub your finger first. Some cats are also easily over stimulated when they are rubbed from head to tail so only go about half way down their back while petting.

‘Chirping’ Meows-

Have you ever heard your cat make repeated quick small meows? That’s actually a cat’s natural response when they are hunting birds! My cats so this quite often from their cat condos in front of our living room window and even in response to a feathered toy! They do this to mimic bird sounds, which is believed to trick real birds into coming close enough for them to pounce on. It’s quite adorable and one of my favorite cat behaviors.

Cat Grudges-

With a dog you can rub their nose in the carpet with they poop in the house but if you do this to a cat you will have a lifetime of poop on your bed ahead of you. Cats process memories differently from dogs. A dog remembers that pooping the the house makes their owner upset but a cat remembers the same action as their owner is mean to them. Sometimes they will develop a grudge just because someone smells different!

There is a new wave of animal training that fully believes in positive reinforcement, specifically in regard to dogs but I feel this kind of technique is even more important with cats to avoid ruining animal-human relationships. So when that friend your cat hates comes over, have them feed your cat treats, little by little they will begin to like this person.

 

Cat do all kinds of odd behavior that seem nearly impossible to understand (like running in circles- sideways) some are just hilarious and others are bothersome, regardless cats are hard to ignore.

Creating A Cat Haven Without Killing Your Furniture

(These are my kids Coheed and Taz)

My little fur balls of terror have given me quite the education on this subject. After years of struggling I finally found a balance that works for them and me.

Sharing a space with felines can be a challenge, specially while trying to preserve a level of style. Following these simple steps can help guide you towards a human/cat space balance that everyone can be happy with.

THERE ARE NEVER TOO MANY TOYS

Some cats have toy preferences, and these can change with age. Many kittens will be content with string but as they age they will need something slightly more stimulating. This was true for my cats, both were content with string as babies and now they each have their own preference. Taz is fetch driven with her toy choices and Coheed is sound driven. Taz has grown to love straws, hair ties, and stuffed mice- all of which derived from her love of fetch. Coheed also chases after the stuffed mice and hair ties but his toy of choice are balls with bells.

REWARD GOOD BEHAVIOR

Cat’s can be much harder to train than dogs. Dogs have a natural instinct to people please that we have literally selectively bread into them, cats however have a much more independent sensibility. Cats are much more likely to respond to positive re-enforcement because of this.

If your cat has a habit of clawing your couch even with their scratching post nearby try giving them rewards when they choose the correct item to kneed on. Finding a variety of rewards for them can also be a great tool. For some cats a food treat will be the best reward where others would prefer a good rub down or a toy. Providing a variety can help you determine which one means more to your cat and can help direct you to changing their behavior positively.

SENSITIVE SENSES

Cat’s are extremely clean animals. They are born with the desire to use a litter box, they understand that a box with loose gravel is a desirable place to relieve themselves. They prefer to drink moving water because it is reminiscent of a stream, where as still water in the wild is often stagnate and unsafe to drink. Because of this it is very important to keep their environment clean. Litter boxes should be cleaned daily along with water dishes to keep them appealing. If you have an automatic watering system make sure food or dirt does not end up in there as this will deter their desire to drink from it. Filtered water is also a good idea for cats, some chemicals used to filter tap water can actually build up in their systems and cause medical problems.

CAT PROOFING

Cat proofing your house is oddly very similar to child proofing your home. Tucking away cords and installing baby locks on cabinets are good beginnings for any cat owned human. This will not only save them from any medical issues but also damaging your expensive household items. This is another area where cat toys/furniture come in handy, by giving them things they can entertain themselves with they are less likely to look for their own ‘toys’.

REMEMBER WHY YOU HAVE THEM

I think the hardest part is understanding that having a cat comes with a responsibility to give them a happy life. Cats cannot be happy if they are not permitted to act like cats! If your biggest concern is about not having cat furniture because it does not agree with your aesthetic you have some soul searching to do. Cats need their own space to claw, scratch, and play on so unless you have no problem with them ripping your couch up you must provide them with cat furniture. Even if you cant afford the giant cat condos, a scratching post next to your couch can be just as effective so do your research and find one you can live with.

A cat’s natural instinct is to scratch and claw anything to keep their nails sharp and ready for a hunt. Scratching is also a frustration reliever for cats which is why they will tend to scratch more when their humans direct negative energy at them for doing so! By providing them with a space where that is permitted they will loose their desire to scratch the things that are for human use.

CAT HARMONY

Ultimately there are sacrifices you will have to make for your new family additions but those sacrifices will well be worth it! My cats bring me so much joy and knowing that I am providing them with a balanced home is as important to me as a balanced home for me and my husband!

Everything in life should be about progress

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I feel that no matter where you are in life you should strive to make it better. Mostly because if you can’t figure out how to make a good situation great then you’re sure as hell not going to know how to make a bad one suck any less.

Today’s stress will be tomorrow’s wrinkles if you don’t have the right anti-aging cream to fight them off. Or as how I think my husband would say “Today’s bull shit doubles tomorrow’s”- I think I like mine better.

I’m not entirely sure what I’m doing here, this is my first blog, but  I think I’m going to use this as an outlet of ideas and hopefully you can enjoy it as much as I do. I hope to make this blog about giving advice in the areas I am knowledgeable about which will be mostly hair and beauty, diys, and general being a cat-ladyness.

But like I said, everything should be about progress- so my plan for this blog today might take a new direction tomorrow, so I hope you will stick it our with me on this ride of life.