Published on November 2nd, 2015 | by Kristen Swain0
Christmas with our Kitties
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As the years have gone by and as I have grown older, I have grown to love our family cats more. We have two sweet fur babies, Sugar and Cotter. Both adopted far from babies, we never got to love on baby kitties, instead we gave our love to older animals. When we adopted Cotter, he was about 3 years old. He came with another cat, Shae, who was the loving-est cat ever. Shae passed on, but poor Cotter would never have been adopted without sweet Shae. Cotter is neurotic, skittish on his best days, totally afraid on his worst. He stays in my bedroom, rarely coming out during the daytime. When it’s dark and the house is quiet, is his best time. When you are alone in the dark room with him, he becomes the most loving, purring cat. We love him bunches, but it is frustrating to see the same cat who headbutted you seconds ago for attention, run from you like you are evil when the light is switched on. Cotter is about 17 now, and sleeps on my feet at night, I just adore him even with his neurosis. Sugar is our family cat who loves to be loved on and mostly the perfect kitty. She loves each of us, and spends her evenings switching back and forth from the girls to me to get attention.
With it being close to Christmas, I have been thinking of how much we love our kitties, and Christmas with our Kitties.I don’t splurge much on treats and toys for them, but I wanted to share our family tradition, creating and gifting to our favorite kitties on Christmas day. Christmas morning, the cats always come out to see the commotion, play with the ribbons and the wrapping paper, and just get general attention. It’s extra nice for them to have a little toy or treat so they can enjoy the fun too.
I went to Walmart and found a huge selection of kitty treats. These TEMPTATIONS® treats are one of our kitty’s favorites. I bought a nice big box of them TEMPTATIONS®CATNIP Flavor- with Chicken, Catnip and Cheddar Flavors. You can see, Cotter was trying to eat them out of the container. Seriously, our cats go wild over them! Walmart also had the TEMPTATIONS® Snacky Mouse, and I grabbed that to see if the cats would like to earn their treats.
These treats have only 2 calories per treat, so I don’t have to worry about them having a handful.
For Christmas, I make our kitties a gift basket. I make a basket for several reasons. I love that they can reach in and interact with the goodies. But also, I tried making a stocking for them, they almost knocked down a lot of decor trying to get into the stocking that was hanging. EEP! Funny thing, once I placed it on the floor, they were more frightened of it then wanting the catnip they were trying to get in the first place! So I opted for a basket this year to try to keep the destruction down. They will be a little bad anyway. Sugar chews on the branches of the tree, but mostly is content sleeping under the warm lights. Cotter can not be trusted to leave any fibre fill snow alone, he will nibble or eat it!
To create a basket- I added some pretty napkins, and placed in a package of small kitty toys, the TEMPTATIONS® Snacky Mouse, the box of TEMPTATIONS® didn’t quite fit inside, so it got to sit along side the basket.
I also added in a container of cat grass to grow, kitties need their greens. And two catnip presents I want to show you how to make.
Cotter (above) was in heaven smelling all his toys and treats. Sugar( below) wasn’t super happy to be wearing her Christmas bells finery.
When treats bring Cotter out of my room, that’s a good sign I found some great gifts for him!
He really wanted to get into that basket and love on the catnip presents.
He loves the TEMPTATIONS®, little bits of yummy goodness. I can feel good about giving him treats a couple times a day.
Want to make your own catnip presents? These are one of the best catnip filled toys I have ever seen. About 10 years ago, at the pet store, they sold catnip cigars. They were fabric logs filled with good catnip. Our cats just loved them. But at $7 a piece, I knew I could make them on my own.
These are easiest if you have a sewing machine. You can also hand sew them, I think it would be AWESOME to teach your teens some basic sewing skills ( boys too!)
Begin with one or two pieces of fabric, measuring about 5×9 inches. Each piece of fabric makes a pouch. I went with red and green since it’s Christmas.
Turn the fabric inside out so the inside faces you. Then fold in half.
Sew the bags, on two sides, the third side is folded so no sewing needed. This size they are about 4. 5 inches x 2.5 inches.
Do this with both bags.
Turn the bags right side out, then fold down the open edge.
Fill the bags completely with dried cat nip. One bag filled both my pouches.
Unfold the top, then fold the sides of the tip in, and down about three folds worth, kind of like folding down a bag of chips. Use a fancy stitch like a zigzag to close the bag with the sewing machine.
To finish, hot glue on a pet bell and a ribbon bow.
Catnip present all done!
Cotter absolutely adores these bags.
Look at the love on his face.
He is so happy he forgot to be afraid.
Ideas for Cat gift baskets for the holidays
- scratching post or boards
- catnip toys
- new food bowls
- bell,crinkle,sparkle, or noise making toys
- warming pad ( for older pets)
- cat greens/grass
- new bed
- favorite brand food
These are just a few basic ideas for you. I think our pets don’t immediately come to mind for gift buying during the holiday season, so don’t forget to add kitty to your holiday list. Because our pets won’t ever complain and they love they will give you in return is priceless.