Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Mayor's Alliance Cats August 23 - Sunnie, Oreo, Smoky, Diego and Angel

I went again to do TTouch on the Mayor's Alliance cats through Tavi & Friends' TTouch-in-Rescue program.

The first kitty I worked on is the lovely little grey tabby kitten pictured below, Sunnie. She is as sweet as can be and came right to the front of the cage, as you see here. I picked her up and held her to do TTouch, as I wanted to avoid her getting loose in the room and hiding somewhere that would be hard to retrieve her. She really resonded to ear strokes and immediately began to purr. I did raccoon touches on her head and then chomp touches and clouded leopard down her body. She was extremely comfortable and cuddled into my arms.

Then I went to do TTouch on Oreo (pictured below) and her friend Smoky. Oreo was waiting for me at the front of the cage and was eager to be touched. I did TTouch on her in short bursts, giving her breaks, as in the past she has easily gotten over-stimulated and sometimes will swat as a result. Today there was no swatting or even a hint of it. She rubbed her head against me as I did TTouches on her head and ears, and then touches and strokes with the back of my hand down each side of her back. Smoky was sleeping at the other end of the cage and looked so comfortable, I didn't want to wake her up :)

Diego (below) was very receptive to TTouch and very relaxed and gentle, as usual. I did slow abalone touches down his back (these are touches using the whole hand). Abalone TTouches can be extremely comforting and these seem to be what he especially responds to. I also did some chimp TTouches on his head and body.
Tempo is very important when doing TTouch - slow touches are very relaxing and faster ones are more envigorating - and what one animal finds relaxing can be irritating to another. It can take some work to figure out what tempo is optimum. Pressure is also very important, and the "right" pressure varies from one animal to another as well. When I demonstrate TTouch on another person to show them what pressure I am using with the TTouches on their animal, they are often surprised at how light a pressure I am using.

Next I did TTouch on Angel (still picture directly below and then a video below that). You will see that I did a lot of zigzag TTouches on her, as she really responds to these TTouches. I also do TTouches around her head and mouth area, and some plain strokes with the back of my hand. She is such a sweet cat.

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