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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Yarn Along + Cats in Northern India

Princess Panchali playing with a mouse I made
Today I'm linking up to the Yarn Along for the first time in a long time to tell you about the toys I've made for my kittens.

Cats a rare pet in India. Actually, pets are rare in India. According to Creature Companion, a pet magazine in India, only 4% of Indian households have a pet of any kind. And according to the Times of India, of the households with pets, only 2% of those have cats. Yep, cats are in only 2% of 4% of households here! So we're super rare!



The unpopularity of cats here was very surprising for me... but that in itself was no surprise. Why would I be prepared for cats to be so rare here when in America, cats surpassed dogs at the most popular pet years ago?
56% of Americans are pet owners, and 30.4% are cat owners. So one in three people in America are cat owners, and here it's less than 1 in 1000. This is mainly due to superstitions, plus feral cats are easily killed by the packs of feral dogs that are everywhere here, so it's not like there's tons of stray cats wanting to be adopted.

Which is why it's been really hard finding cat supplies for our pretty kitties. It's hard enough getting litter and cat food, let alone toys!

Hence my handy crochet hook! My mom suggested I make the cats toys, a brilliant idea. After all, cats and yarn are a classic combination, right?

She told me on the phone how to make toy mice. She said just make a small ring, then go around making a tube, then reduce to make a nose. Then you stuff it, then pull tight the starting side, leaving some yarn as a tale.

And it works well and is easy!

Vex playing with the dangly toy in the cat tower.
I also have made one more toy for the cats, part of a bigger project- their cat tower! I made them a cat tower by taping boxes together, and then taping them on an end table in the living room. I punched a hole in the top of the main box and pulled the string of my dangly toy here through, then wound it around the front, then through the hole a few times, then tied it. Then I put tape over it. This makes it strong enough to stand up to tough punishment as the cats dangle from it and try to tear it down. (I know I could probably make it a lot prettier covering it in wrapping paper or fabric, but the truth is I have neither right now, and the cats don't care.)

As far as books go, I've been reading free ebooks like crazy on my Nook, mainly romances. I'm currently reading a Christian novel called "The Calling of Emily Evans." It's good thus far.

I've only made the dangly toy on the tower and two mice so far, but I'll probably make some more mice here and there. I'm not making a ton because I STILL haven't found a yarn source here in India, despite being here seven months. I'm told I might be able to find it in Delhi, but I rarely get to Delhi and no one is telling me exactly where to find it, so I haven't bothered. The yarn I'm using is yarn my dear older sister sent me in a care package. Isn't that awesome?

Still, my cats need toys... if only to keep them from playing with things they shouldn't! So I'm also trying to think what other kinds of toys I might be able to make. Any ideas?

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