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Just over 16 years ago, my good friend and co-worker Melissa walked out of her door to the sounds of a tiny one-day-old baby kitten mewing on her front step. The kitten, who she named Oden, was so small he could easily fit in the palm of your hand. That day she brought him into work in a shoe-box. Wanting desperately to help him thrive, she began nursing him with an eyedropper of milk. He was such a fighter, and for days she continued to do what she could to help this sweet little creature live.
And everyone in our office fell in love.
Melissa soon discovered that his cat family lived underneath her apartment, so she made a plan to retrieve them. When our little fighter Oden was about five weeks old, she pulled three more baby cats (and two feral adults) from beneath her home. She took the adults to be fixed and kept one beautiful white kitten Freya herself, while I ended up adopting the other two kittens who I named Zoe and Zachary.
Oden and Freya (above), Zoe and Zachary (below), circa 2001
I had never owned a cat of my own, and being single, living and working in Los Angeles those two kittens became my babies. Zachary was super relaxed and acted more like a dog, while Zoe, my tuxedo kitten, was the anxious typically-standoffish cat. She was nervous from the day I got her, and definitely wasn’t as friendly with others, except me of course.
At about three years of age, we discovered that Zachary had kidney failure and I spent a few years nursing him with subcutaneous fluid and special foods. It was soon after this time that I met John, got married and we moved to the Seattle area. On the trip up Zachary was very sick and passed away shortly after our arrival. We found another sibling for Zoe, a grey cat we named Cooper, and once again fell in love with a sweet dog-like cat. But at about two years of age, we discovered Cooper had FIP and he passed away too. These losses were so heartbreaking but through it all Zoe stood strong, healthy and sweet in her own little way.
Today it’s been 16 years and our senior cat Zoe is still as spry as ever and always our anxious little girl, a “fraidy-cat” except around me and John.
Living such a long life, what she eats is so very important. I recently discovered Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Zero Grain Food for Cats. Each wholesome recipe is made with real chicken or seafood. There are never any grains, artificial flavors or artificial preservatives, meat by-products, or fillers. This food contains essential vitamins, minerals and taurine for a tasty food for cats. For coupons up to $4 OFF Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® products, visit this link.
Right now Zoe is eating Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Zero Grain Food for Cats (Dry) Chicken & Potato Recipe. Chicken is the #1 ingredient, which provides essential nutrients to help support healthy organs and lean muscle mass. She loves it! (That tongue says it all.)
It also makes me feel good to purchase this food for cats because Rachael’s personal proceeds go to Rachael’s Rescue, an organization that helps shelter pets in need. To date, she has donated over $14 million toward food, medical supplies and treatments for animals.
In honor of Zoe’s 16th year, Ellie and I decided to make our kitty her own personalized bowls, and today I’m sharing how we did it. It was a lot of fun!
How to Make DIY Cat Bowls
What You’ll Need:
White Oven Safe Bowls
Permanent Markers in Colors of Choice
Tape (duct tape, masking tape and/or painter’s tape in varying widths)
Cotton Swabs & Nail Polish Remover (to easily fix mistakes)
Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Food for Cats
Use Varying Widths of Tape to Create Striped Designs.
First we used duct tape to tape a strip around the top half of the bowl. Then using permanent markers we colored the bottom half of our new cat bowl in red and blue. We then used tape on the sides to create stripes of different sizes. This made it easy for Ellie to also get involved with coloring the bowls. Tip! We found darker colors including red, blue and purple to hold it’s color best when baked in the oven.
Bake Completed Bowls in Oven.
Place dry bowls in a cool oven (do not pre-heat oven). Set oven to 350 degrees and bake with door closed for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, turn off your oven but leave the mugs inside until the oven cools down naturally. Remove cool mugs from oven and enjoy!
Note: These are not dishwasher safe as is and must be hand washed. Tip! There are “dishwasher safe” clear acrylic sprays available but they are not food safe, so if you use it make sure that you cover the inside of your bowls before spraying.
Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® wet and dry cat food varieties are available at a wide variety of quality retailers. We purchase ours at Fred Meyer, our favorite local grocery store where we shop every week so it’s certainly convenient to find. Find Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® products near you by visiting nutrish.rachaelray.com/where-to-buy.
Follow me on Pinterest, and pin these other cat craft ideas for later!
Pet Feeding Tip! I found the above stackable party water dispenser at Fred Meyer too, and it is a great option for easily serving fresh water every day, particularly if you have kids helping out with the feeding.
Check out these simple instructions for beautiful glass etching.
My mom made me this adorable decoupaged pet memory box. Isn’t it darling?! Check out how to decoupage photo memory gifts here.
Do you have a pet who would enjoy Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Food for Cats? Follow Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® on Pinterest for more great Cat Crafts!