Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Why We Don't Write Cruelty Posts

If you're wondering why I haven't written a lot about Cole the Tuxie Cat, or the other cruelty cases I've come across, here's the explanation.  Marg: there are no horrible pics or descriptions, just a nice picture of Guido!

Those of you who don't live in Malaysia may not realise that this blog supports Katz Tales, a newspaper column that I write for The Star.  When I started writing it back in 2006, I had two overt aims: to entertain and to help new cat lovers understand their pets better.

The 800 word article is always about my cats, and there's a sidebar of facts and information.  I knew that many cat lovers here kept their pets in cages (to keep them safe and clean) without inoculation (because animals aren't people so they don't need them) and a host of other popular misconceptions, so I was hoping the sidebar would help those kitties get a better deal.

I also had two covert aims: to persuade those who tolerate cats to love them, and to persuade those who hate cats to tolerate them. 


As I think that you catch more flies with honey,  Katz Tales is a "feel good" column where I try to make people laugh (at me mostly) and by sharing how wonderful it is to have pet family.  I don't write about cruelty - unless it's the way Au and his colleagues manipulate their servants.

Sometimes I get flak from people who think I should highlight abuse cases.  My friends sometimes poke at me for never writing about the occasional cruelty cases I help out with and the strays I feed, neuter and medicate daily. 

I've explained it's partly a philosophical and branding issue but I have to confess it's partly selfishness too.  I already get lots of email saying, "I just rescued 6 cats, when can I drop them at your place?" and I don't want to have to keep explaining that I'm not a rescue centre, a living saint like some of my rescue pals, or a bottomless well of ca$h.  Also, cruelty cases break my heart, and I'm not one of those Teflon people who can just shrug stuff off.

So as an exception for once I'll tell you now that Cole the Tuxie cat is fat and happy and totally healed.  I tried to take his picture yesterday but he keeps rolling onto his back so we'll have to wait till Saturday when his mummy can hold him up for a nice pose.  And that cat down the street who was attacked with boiling water a few days ago seems to be healing thanks to the meds our vet gifted me with.

And to make you all smile, here's Guido!  He's giggling because he's had breakfast AND trashed the living room.  He's one kitty who's living the good life and I'm hoping that Katz Tales helps some others to do the same.

PS to read two free Tales published in The Star newspaper, check out Scoop Moves In and Scoop Fakes An Illness, and click on Our Books to download How Boris The Cat Was Reunited With His Family, a free PDF download. If you buy the book, Katz Tales, also listed under Our Books, 10% goes to Friends Furry Farm charity.

41 comments:

sully86 said...

au and target: good to hear they are doing fine.

BeadedTail said...

We're glad the kitties are doing well! We know cruelty exists and don't need to see it to feel horrible about it. We're sending purrs to the kitties to keep getting better!

Katnip Lounge said...

I know how you feel. It's the same reason I don't post about cat blogoshpere passings, illness, etc. I want to have a cheerful space in my life.
I think your philosophy for changing folks, just a little, is great! And realistic.

Mr. Pip said...

I definitely understand. I think humor and positivity are sometimes more effective tools for change than harsh reality.

Your pal, Pip

Cheysuli and gemini said...

We are glad he is doing well. We quite like the brand you have created. Cruelty posts can be so very sad.

i am missmobilicious said...

"... I'm not a rescue centre, a living saint like some of my rescue pals, or a bottomless well of ca$h"

-- is exactly my thoughts.

it's tiring to explain that even though I take care of my two adopted used-to-be-stray cats does not mean I apread myself thin on that and will/can handle more, and when i don't do it only means I am less of a kind feline lover.

It has always been very lovely to know your cats and be in an awareness through your way of writing - with much humour about how we are the servants of our cats and how we absolutely gets manipulated by them in almost every way.

Looking forward to many more updates!

Spitty-the-Kitty said...

Sometimes I think writing about the happy aspects of having kitty companions is the best way to open up some hearts and minds. While I don't know the story of Cole, I am glad to hear his story had a happy ending XOXO

Cat-from-Sydney said...

Aunty E,
Spot on! We subscribe to your feelings too. Though I did let off steam somewhat over the Petknode episode. purrr....meow!

fatimatuzzahra said...

love d pic :)

The Chair Speaks said...

Our human agrees with us that you are doing great and should allow whatever words affect you. Our human loves Guido's copper-coloured eyes! Purrs!

Old Kitty said...

Me and Charlie love that you use words to bring a little cheer in this dark dark world!

Hugs and purrs to Cole and all those other kitties who are recovering!

Big hello to Au, Target and giggly Guido! Take care
x

Mango said...

I like your philosophy. Help people to love cats and they will naturally advocate against cruelty. I have stumbled over some photos on some blogs that have been burned into my brain forever and they don't make me want to help more, they just make me frightened. I doubt the ignorant people who need to be hit over the head about animal cruelty are reading your articles anyway, so why not appeal to those on the fence who just need a nudge into better appreciation for all animals.

Good for you.

Mango Momma

Fuzzy Tales said...

I missed Cole's story, sorry, but am glad he's got a happy ending. Or beginning. :-)

Frankly, I have enough struggles of my own, with enough dark thoughts weighing me down, that I really don't want to read about a lot of cruelty cases. It's not that I don't care deeply, or am not horrified, or don't want to help--it's what I can endure, emotionally. And I'm not thick-skinned, either, not "Teflon." I struggle enough with depression, I don't want to read things that burden me down even further.

Brian said...

I agree, there is plenty of sad and sharing the happy is the best!

Gattina said...

I agree with you ! why show atrocities ? those who do it don't read this blog and those who read it would be scandalized and would write their protests, disgust etc. But that doesn't help the cat ! I admire what you are doing, you know even here in our so said civilized country, some people still think that an animal is a thing to play with and then when it doesn't behave as they want, they just throw it away. Especially on the countryside. I always make publicity to spay the cats, there are still people thinking that a cat should have kitten at least one time before she can be spayed. What a nonsense !

Jacqueline said...

Those cruelty posts are just heartbreaking and the humans responsible should be punished greatly=it is soooooo sad they are not...Great news about sweet Cole=wishing him and all innocent animals a life filled with love and peace ...On a lighter note, Happy Mardi Gras, precious friends=Laissez les bons temps rouler!!!...xoxo...Calle, Halle, Sukki, Mommy Cat, Daddy Cat

Purrfect Haven said...

I am totally with you on this and love your analogy about catching more flies with honey - perfect. Like you, I try to do all I can to support and help animals in need but I recognise I am sensitive to suffering and have a brain that photographs these things and replays them in the night leaving me feeling distraught and powerless. I appreciate your philosophy and love your blog and all associated info :-) Love Helen, Darcy and Bingley xxx

Cheri said...

We always follow the saying - kill with kindness - niceness goes further than shocking or berating. I have always found with animals it is more about teaching others thru our examples. Kudos to you!

Cats of wildcat woods

Clooney said...

We likes you guys just the way you are...and enjoy hearing about Au's rost chikkun. Keep up the good work.

Tamago said...

Each of us has our own way and purpose for sharing stories. Your aims for your writing are wonderful.
This is such a cute picture of Guido with delightful smile! I love your "feel good" style :-)

Tillie and Georgia said...

We like the idea of presenting cats in a warm,loving atmosphere where they are safe and happy! We believe that this method will 'rub off' on people and they will begin to treat animals better :) Great job!
Purrs Tillie and Georgia,
Tiger, Treasure and JJ

GrammyMouseTails said...

I enjoy your positive posts & encouraging of all animals deserve a good loving home. I also want to thanks you for the positive thoughts & comments left while I am recovering from my cervical spine surgery :o) and I appreciate the kitties caring purrs too ! ~Faythe @ GMT

Cat Chat With Caren And Cody said...

I'm all about cheer......if I want "heavy" all of the time I can just visit my own life lol

Jan's Funny Farm said...

You have a kind heart. And we like your stories.

catsynth said...

It can be a difficult balancing act. Tales of cruelty are heartbreaking. We did write a bit about it early on when blogging, but over time we have to a similar conclusion about staying positive. At least when it comes to cats...

bichonpawz said...

We understand. Sometimes it's best to keep our blogs positive...there is so much negativity in the world! xoxo Chloe and LadyBug

Declan said...

Very well said. You're doing a fantastic job Deccy x

meowmeowmans said...

We understand completely, and feel the same way. It's one of the reasons we enjoy visiting you guys so much.

Photo Cache said...

we hugs you. keep up the good work

Emma and Buster

Milo and Alfie Marshall said...

We couldn't agree with you more. we know cruelty exists but seeing it visually doesn't help stop it, in fact it upsets mom so much she cries all day.
We abhor cruelty to animals and will always try to help them, stick up for them etc ~ but we don't want to see visual images.
xx

Kjelle Bus said...

Glad to hear that the both Cole the Tuxie and the other poor cat will be allright :)
Me and mom don´t do any post´s about abuse cases either for the same reason as you.
Sometimes I write about Animal shelters that needs extra help for one reason or other.
Me and mom wan´t my blog to be a happy place where you can come and hopefully get a good laugh or two :)

Splendid Little Stars said...

poignant subject. It's good to know that some animals not only survive but heal.
I like your approach.
Guido looks quite content!

Katie Isabella said...

I am most grateful for your kindness. I cannot read any posts or tweets hearlding cases of horrible abuse and cruelty. I will block both. I will remember each word and see each picture that I unwillingly-unwittingly saw till my last breath on earth.

I can't bear it..I protect myself from reading it or seeing it. That does not mean that I am unaware of it. Sadly I am VERY aware of it becuse of the media --and me not knowing what was coming, had to hear the first words or see the opening picture.

I think that is irresponsible of the media to foist that off on unsuspecting people as some will be copy cats and do the same.

I help animals in need every chance I can and can afford to. That is my way of contributing. I don't have to see innocent animals torutred. Sorry..got carried away. Delete it if it's too much.

The Purr Diaries said...

Its hard to get through every day if we're always thinking about the cruelty that goes on... :o(

Boo-Bah AKA Iris said...

I think we who love our animals know all too well that animal cruelty exists without reading about it all the time. Sometimes I think that the sicko's who read about it might get ideas!

Educating well meaning pet owners is really so necessary.

I have been so behind on blogging lately. I went back and read all of your posts that I missed. My favorite was reading Au's menu for that particular day! It's wonderful that he is doing so well.

Hugs
Iris

AttieCattie said...

hear, hear. we unnerstands how you feels.

Dianne said...

I know exactly what you mean
those of us who have ever rescued or adopted totally know what cruelty there is out there, we don't need to see it to know it

I think you do amazing things with humor and love

GRAÇA said...

I leave just a ronronzinho's friend
Kika ♥ ♥ ♥

GRAÇA said...

I leave just a ronronzinho's friend
Kika ♥ ♥ ♥

dusty cleo said...

Thanks for your entertaining and informative stories, Ellen.
When I adopted my Dusty 3 yrs ago, I was a clueless and worried cat owner. Katz Tales in The Star and Living under the velvet paw gave me invaluable advice in understanding my darling baby cat. Keep up the good work!

Sharon Wagner said...

I totally understand. Things like that just break our hearts.