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For the Love of Cats

Naomi’s Training Table

Team Meow Power in front of a quilt of mascot, Mr. Kitt. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi the cat and Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: On Sunday, October 4, the island will be aswarm with spandex-clad athletes competing in the Marco Island Fitness Challenge Triathlon. As supervisor here at For the Love of Cats, I have thrown our whiskers into the ring with my team “Meow Power”. The three-discipline event is comprised of a quarter-mile open-water swim in the toasty waters of the Gulf, a 15-mile bike ride through the island’s few hills and fewer dales, and a 3.1-mile run on the steaming hot white-sand beach. Survivors are awarded medals. I ... Read More »

Naomi’s “Meow Power”

Coach Naomi, thinking about the job ahead.

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi &Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: It’s official! My triathlon team has a name – “Meow Power.” A big thanks to all of you who answered last month’s call for team name submissions. The winning name was submitted by Claire Baumler, one of my volunteers. What do you, dear readers, think of a minor team name modification, something along the lines of “Naomi’s Meow Power?” I think this is only fair since I am responsible for thinking this whole endeavor up in the first place. Moreover, I have to whip my team of three into ... Read More »

Naomi’s Kittens and Triathlon Coach

Duchess (Port au Prince rescue)

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: I need to clear up any confusion among new readers who have come late to my wisdom-packed columns. I am, in fact, a cat, a one-time dumpster diving stray turned full-time resident here at For the Love of Cats, Marco Island’s no-kill cat shelter. I am, however, by no means your average house cat. For starters, I have my own newspaper column. Secondly, I am the shelter supervisor and manage a staff (remember, dogs have owners, cats have staff) of 70-80 volunteers who must heed my every request. And ... Read More »

Naomi’s April Woes

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By Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: Spring has pounced, we’re still in the paw-grip of kitten season, and sherpas packing fleas are pitching tents in our warm and radiant fur coats. Now let’s talk bikini season. Most felines, such as ourselves, eat way too many carbohydrates in the form of dry food. I don’t care how much your staff (as you may recall only dogs have owners; we felines have staff) pays for a bag of the good stuff, even if it’s $175 for an eight -pound bag. Cats don’t need to carbo-load like amateur athletes in ... Read More »

Naomi’s Up to Her Ears in Kittens!

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For the Love of Cats Naomi & Karina Paape Dear Fellow Felines: I’m up to my tortie ears in kittens! I’m talking lots and lots of kittens! Just the other day I was making my morning rounds – taking inventory if you will, and thought surely my eyes were deceiving me; so much so that I had to dig out my calculator. The numbers weren’t lying. Sometime in the early hours of a placid March morning, nine kittens appeared as if out of thin air. We – For the Love of Cats, Marco Island’s no-kill cat shelter – had recently ... Read More »

No Biting

Misty is all grey.

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: I hope you all had a terrific Valentine’s Day. I sure did. I was besieged with cards, treats, cat grass, treats, toys, treats, a fancy cat bed, treats, a designer cat tree, treats, and more treats. Mixed in with the hundreds of love letters, however, I ran across a few disturbing emails (yes, cats have email accounts; we just choose not to “reply”). It sounds to me like some of you have been biting your staff, the very hands that feed you, and without provocation. I’m not talking love ... Read More »

Naomi’s Christmas Fun

Roger

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Did all you boys and girls get what you wanted from Santa Claws, or did you forget to leave the milk and yummy treaties out on the hearth? Remember, Santa Claws is a true-blooded tortie like me who loves his treats. I had a very Merry Christmas with the kitty elves, the shelter kittens and shelter founders Jan and Jim Rich. I supervised Jan for days while she decorated the place. My job was to test Jim’s lionel train set, but I got pretty dizzy watching ... Read More »

Naomi Christmas 2014

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FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines, Now that I have — literally — Thanksgiving under my belt (boy, was that turkey and green bean casserole tasty), it’s time to talk about Santa Claws, elves, Christmas cookies (yummy smelling, but deadly for cats), stockings, tinsel, fake snow (what is snow by the way?), glass ornaments, those awful scented candles and, of course, that silly mistletoe your staff stands under in expectation that someone will kiss him or her. For you newbie felines experiencing your first Christmas, the joys of the day are many: dangling ... Read More »

Naomi’s Black Cat Lores

Nola

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: Happy Halloween! This is my favorite day of the year because I get to race and slither through the shelter like a wild cat, wielding my tiger-sized goody bag and collecting the annual toll I exact from my staff of 80 volunteers. It matters not whether it be people food or top-end cat food (none of that dry stuff, yuck!), just so long as it isn’t that dreadful tasting junk food dogs eat with such gusto. It goes without saying, but obviously I’m going to say it ... Read More »

Naomi’s Identity Crisis

Marissa and her kittens. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: My little tortie heart is crushed and broken. There is not a photo to be found of me in our 2015 Glamour Puss Calendar — for the second year in a row, I might add. Did someone forget to tell me I’ve been placed in the Witness Protection Program? There is, of course, the remotest of possibilities (very remote I might add) that I’m wrong, so here’s the deal. Anyone who’s been to Disney World knows there’s a great game whereby visitors are challenged to find “hidden ... Read More »

Naomi’s Summer Vacation

Armani.  SUBMITTED photoS

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: I feel the love. I know I was missed, that my absence was noticed. I even know that I missed my last deadline, but — for the first time in my life — I took a vacation! Imagine! Me, your most esteemed tortie and chief supervisor over here at For the Love of Cats, got into cars and boarded airplanes. I travelled as far south as Key West, an island where cats are revered, and as far north as Boston, where dogs rule. And yes, as one ... Read More »

Summer Grooming per Naomi

Armani

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear fellow felines: Well, here we are in the midst of summer, and you know what that means: flip flops and bikinis for your staff (remember, cats have staff, dogs have owners), plus lots of noise and water fights around the pool. And let’s not forget that unappetizing scent of sun tan lotion. How is a fragile feline to cope? How are we to get our daily 18 hours of sleep amidst such mischief and mayhem? I say let’s enjoy the entertainment and join the folks poolside. You know what ... Read More »

Naomi’s July 4th

Jessie

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines We are on the threshold of yet another Fourth of July celebration, the most frightening day of my life thanks to the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air and my own raw fear. As I write this, my nights are haunted by nightmares of “Caddyshack” level proportions. Like those poor, unsuspecting gophers, blown out of their subterranean, golf course housing, I head for shelter under a bed, abandoning my stake-out of the fridge. As if this weren’t enough to traumatize an unsuspecting feline, we have ... Read More »

Naomi’s Get Out of Town Cheat Sheet

Brewster

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines:  So my furry friends, it’s that time of year again — the time when our staffs hyper ventilate and reach for their glasses of wine at the Weather Channel’s merest utterance of any or all of the following words/phrases: tropical storm, hurricane watch, category 3,4 or 5 monster storm, cone of danger, predicted path of travel, and target landfall. And thus is launched what can only be described as “hurricane mania,” that heart rate inducing frenzy that compels our staffs (remember, cats have staff, dogs have owners) ... Read More »

Naomi’s Kitten Duties

Shyla’s brood of kittens looking as cute as can be. PHOTOS BY NADINE OUILLETTE

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net   Dear Fellow Felines: I am up to my whiskers in kittens! I’m not too good with numbers, but it looks to me like there are hundreds of them. They’re swinging from the rafters, climbing the walls, running, jumping, tackling, stalking, tumbling, sliding, pouncing and either standing in or knocking over their food and water dishes. And yet, For the Love of Cats co-founder Jan Rich assures me that there are only about 20 of these rambunctious creatures in residence. “Only,” she says! Can you imagine how much work this ... Read More »

Naomi’s Flea Woes

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FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: Kittens, kittens, everywhere kittens! We are in the midst of yet another kitten season, so my paws are full with these loving bundles of fur and fun. Several happy litters are hanging out in my kitty condos and wreaking havoc in my two romper rooms. And guess what? You too can get in on the action thanks to Naomi’s Broadcasting Network. My much anticipated “kitten cam” has gone live. That’s right. For the Love of Cats is now in the reality T.V. business. To check it out, go to ... Read More »

It’s All in the Coat

Shyla

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: It’s that time of year again — “kitten season!” And are we ever bursting at the seams with adorable little furballs. Our first two litters of the 2014 season were born right here at the shelter, giving us a total of 11 baby felines in the wink of an eye. For those who may have forgotten, the 2013 season delivered 176 kittens, all of whom found fantastic fur-ever homes thanks to all of the love showered upon them by my staff of 80 erstwhile volunteers. And, of course, thanks ... Read More »

Namoi’s Love Story

LIZZIE. PHOTOS BY STACEY DOWNEY

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net   Dear Fellow Felines: Whew! I’ve finally finished recording the Christmas cards I got in 2013. Can you believe there were close to seven dozen in all — one from each member of my staff of 80. And yes, I feel the love which is a good thing since Valentine’s Day is just around the bend. This is a very special day for us felines. It allows us to more accurately gauge how much we are truly loved, both by our staffs (remember, dogs have owners; cats have staff) and our companion ... Read More »

Naomi’s Christmas Wish Comes True

Samurai and Nero are thick as thieves.

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines:  Happy “Mew” Year! This is our 16th column together, a relationship that began on Dec. 14, 2012. I had no idea we felines had so much to share about the travails of living with our respective humans. Now to the happiest news of 2013: Kitty Santa Claws granted my one and only Christmas wish, and, at long last, I gained unlimited entree into shelter co-founders Jan and Jim Rich’s home. For nearly a year, I’d been trying to get my paw in the door, but was relentlessly repelled by ... Read More »

Christmas with Naomi

Sally and Franklin were sadly returned to FLC and are looking for a new fur-ever home.

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines We have a lot of ground to cover this time around. For starters, lets begin with you and your staff’s (again, I remind you that only dogs have owners; we felines have staff) resolutions for 2013: Did you meet said lofty goals? I didn’t think so. You just couldn’t lose those five to 10 pounds you hoped to drop could you, your diet having fallen to the wayside some time after Valentine’s Day? I have to admit that I also failed to maintain my diet goal this ... Read More »