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Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2005 * Archive through October 25, 2005 * Brewing with cats < Previous Next >

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ahancbrew1
Member
Username: Ahancbrew1

Post Number: 107
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 143.183.121.1
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 01:10 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I just moved into a condo I have rented from a friend. I inherited her two cats. These are indoor cats and can't be left outside. The kitchen where I will be brewing has no door.

Are there any special concerns regarding cats? I don't plan on letting them in the kitchen, but they are quiet and sneaky.

Andy
 

Dan Listermann
Senior Member
Username: Listermann

Post Number: 1769
Registered: 03-2004
Posted From: 216.23.59.226
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 01:15 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

You might consider a very extended protein rest and rice hulls for an easier sparge.

Dan Listermann

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Skotrat
Senior Member
Username: Skotrat

Post Number: 1387
Registered: 04-2003
Posted From: 24.61.120.214
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 01:16 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hey now,

I have never had a cat that was remotely interested in bothering boiling liquid...

Now dogs on the other hand...

I would not worry unless you are open fermenting.

-Scott
 

ahancbrew1
Member
Username: Ahancbrew1

Post Number: 108
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 143.183.121.1
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 01:37 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Thanks Scott,

Dan I was planning on brewing with the male cat, he's orange and would add a good color. He also has strong legs which would give the beer a real kick:-)

Andy
 

Lilboybrew
Junior Member
Username: Lilboybrew

Post Number: 60
Registered: 03-2002
Posted From: 216.138.37.210
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 01:45 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

...(even tho' cats are not supposed to be able to taste sweetness) our sneaky cat likes to get into and lick DME...
 

Geoff Buschur
Advanced Member
Username: Avmech

Post Number: 975
Registered: 06-2004
Posted From: 205.174.22.28
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 01:56 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Spray bottle. When they get close while you are brewing just give em a squirt. If you get them wet enough they will spend the next hour or two hiding under the couch.
"I've been drunk for 14 years...my judgment isn't what it used to be."

~Woody Harrelson as Roy Munson in Kingpin
 

Tim Polster
Member
Username: Bassman

Post Number: 156
Registered: 11-2004
Posted From: 69.149.36.75
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 01:59 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I think the only concern would be hair.

My cats like to be around all of time and sniff everything, but don't ever disturb anything.

They do leave some hair around from time to time.
 

Graham Cox
Intermediate Member
Username: T2driver

Post Number: 256
Registered: 11-2004
Posted From: 68.32.244.96
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 02:37 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have three, one of whom is inside-outside while the other two are mostly outside. I also have a large inside-outside dog. I have never had a problem with any of them while brewing or fermenting. The one cat likes to get under my feet sometimes and thus poses a trip hazard, but she sees all the buckets and gizmos and flame coming out and wants nothing to do with any of it.

Your new pals will likely be curious but ultimately disinterested.
 

Fredrik
Senior Member
Username: Fredrik

Post Number: 2648
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 62.20.8.114
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 02:47 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My rabbit sometimes makes me company in the kitchen when I brew :-) He likes unhopped wort. However he does stirr up hair and dust from the floor in the air, so I keep him away from the cold wort and fermentors. Once the wort is cooled I take it out of the kitchen out of reach of rabbit dust.

I've never had a problem so far.

/Fredrik
 

Skotrat
Senior Member
Username: Skotrat

Post Number: 1388
Registered: 04-2003
Posted From: 24.61.120.214
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 03:46 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

where is it???

Behind the Rabbit?
 

Bill Aimonetti
Intermediate Member
Username: Zuchinnicat

Post Number: 417
Registered: 02-2003
Posted From: 143.183.121.1
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 04:02 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I read in the wild brews book that some breweries keep cats around to keep brett under control. I have no idea how this would work or maybe it was some sort of joke. Can anyone elaborate on this? I have a garage cat for rodent control. She is always in the garage when I brew. No issues to date.
 

Pete Mazurowski
Member
Username: Pete_maz

Post Number: 200
Registered: 07-2003
Posted From: 12.173.222.115
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 04:13 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Bill,

I read one time about Belgian breweries using cats for pest control (and spiders too) instead of spraying chemicals, because the chemicals could potentially kill the wild yeast & bacteria living in the brewery. Is that what you're thinking of?
 

davidw
Senior Member
Username: Davidw

Post Number: 1324
Registered: 03-2001
Posted From: 65.163.6.62
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 05:12 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

It *is* the rabbit!
 

Tim Wi
Member
Username: Riverkeeper

Post Number: 242
Registered: 03-2005
Posted From: 170.141.68.99
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 05:32 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Well, if you are brewing with a chicken, you are most likely making "c o c k ale"

If you are brewing with cats you are making a ...

Maybe if you brewed both at the same time you would save the cost of dinner and a movie.

T
 

Jim E Walls
New Member
Username: Oljim

Post Number: 9
Registered: 10-2005
Posted From: 65.163.227.30
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 05:57 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Youse Guys spooked my cat!! All this chatter about brewing with cats !?! She is all the time up on the desk sitting right in front of the monitor so that I have to look around or over her to read the posts. Just now, she was here while I was reading this thread - she looked at the screen, let out a disgusted Mee..ow with descending intonation, jumped down, and I haven't seen her since. I think she kind of suspects that from time to time I would like to throw her in the brew pot. I guess it would come out a black & white instead of a black & tan.

Ol'Jim - "It isn't pollution that's harming the environment. It's the impurities in our air and water that are doing it." ...George W. Bush
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 3660
Registered: 01-2002
Posted From: 24.57.229.8
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 06:08 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

What about "cattail ale"? I don't know; do the tubers of cattails that grow in marshy areas have enough starch to be converted to sugar and fermented? There are certainly lots of cattails in the swamps (it's old glacial terrain) not far from where I live.
 

Ginger Larson
Junior Member
Username: Ginger

Post Number: 49
Registered: 08-2001
Posted From: 69.106.8.130
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 07:12 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Our cats aren't interested in any part of the mashing or boiling process, but if we ferment in carboys placed on the floor, they're sometimes very interested in the bubbling airlock.
 

Dan Listermann
Senior Member
Username: Listermann

Post Number: 1776
Registered: 03-2004
Posted From: 216.23.59.226
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 07:15 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Didn't Papazian speculate about cattail starchs? I have some along my parking lot. . . .

Dan Listermann

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Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 3661
Registered: 01-2002
Posted From: 24.57.229.8
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 07:34 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Sure enough, Dan, it's in TNCJoHB where he discusses alternatives used as sources of starches for brewing. The little bit of research I did indicates that cattail roots are technically rhizomes rather than tubers and they are starchy, although they are also small and it would take quite a few of them to make enough for a brewing adjunct. I guess here's an idea for you when you tire of cicada beer and your own self-chewed chicha.
 

George Schmidt
Advanced Member
Username: Gschmidt

Post Number: 615
Registered: 08-2004
Posted From: 198.179.10.7
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 08:27 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

You can get really good, starchy flour from cat-tail rhizomes by crushing them in cold water. The starchy granules will settle out. Good stuff.

Ever since I started AG last year, I've wanted to do a "wilderness" ale using cattails and acorns, maybe some queen anne's lace (wild carrot) and various other survival-type foods. I may get around to it eventually.
Be wary of strong drink. It can make you shoot at tax collectors -- and miss. ~~Robert A. Heinlein: The Notebooks of Lazarus Long
 

Vance Barnes
Senior Member
Username: Vancebarnes

Post Number: 1919
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 208.49.148.10
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 08:33 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

How many extract points for a cat?

Oh, add some ammonia to the spray bottle and it works a lot better
 

Dan Listermann
Senior Member
Username: Listermann

Post Number: 1780
Registered: 03-2004
Posted From: 216.23.59.226
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 09:20 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

How do you harvest the cattails, just pull it out? The "stalk" is useless and smells bad? I need to take a look.

Acorns need to have the tannins removed. I am told that placing them in a sack in a stream will leach the tannins out.

Dan Listermann

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Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 3663
Registered: 01-2002
Posted From: 24.57.229.8
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 09:35 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

It's the cattail "roots," which are actually a rhizome, that contain the starch. Pull up the plants and look for the white roots. They're about as thick as your little finger.


I was thinking the same thing as you about acorn tannins, Dan.
 

Aaron Meyer
Member
Username: Meyeaard

Post Number: 249
Registered: 11-2004
Posted From: 68.229.233.170
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 09:42 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Cattails -

Before using cattails you should research their use and toxicity. It's been years now, but I recall reading that cattails must be throughly cooked before being eaten. (some boy scout survival manual...)

Since they would likely require a thorough boil to soften and / or a cereal mash before being mashed and boiled in the kettle this shouldn't be an issue, but you should still check on it...
 

George Schmidt
Advanced Member
Username: Gschmidt

Post Number: 616
Registered: 08-2004
Posted From: 67.38.34.151
Posted on Monday, October 10, 2005 - 10:23 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Cattails aren't toxic, except that they may have high concentrations of nitrates, depending on where they're planted, so they might give you the runs. The rhizomes can be cooked like little potatoes, or made into a flour-like substance by the method above. In the spring, the yellow spear-like part above the downy head is full of pollen and protein. You can fry it like a fritter.

Getting the tannins out of acorns is easy enough, especially if you pick white oak ones which are lower-tannin in the first place. Soak cold or boil in several changes of water until the water stops turning brown. Protein and fat are the bigger problems with acorns. Like other nuts, they have lots of both. I've thought I'd have to cook and press the nuts to get some oil out, then do a long protein rest.

Oh, and to get this back on the OT, I have two cats and neither wants anything to do with brewing. Both are scared of working airlocks for some reason.
Be wary of strong drink. It can make you shoot at tax collectors -- and miss. ~~Robert A. Heinlein: The Notebooks of Lazarus Long
 

Yam
Junior Member
Username: Yam

Post Number: 52
Registered: 08-2004
Posted From: 24.247.193.42
Posted on Tuesday, October 11, 2005 - 01:21 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Neither of our two cats have been much of a bother when brewing. However, the younger of the two has been tossed out of the kitchen on bottling night. She took an interest in bottle bowling.
 

Paul Hayslett
Advanced Member
Username: Paulhayslett

Post Number: 874
Registered: 02-2002
Posted From: 64.252.37.110
Posted on Tuesday, October 11, 2005 - 03:58 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My cats make themselves scarce whenever brewing equipment is being used. It probably has to do with all the running water, which they want no part of. The only problems I've had were: 1) hair accumulating in the basement where things are stored, and 2) the male cat once sprayed all over a some bottles in storage. He spends MUCH more time outside now.
"Sargeant Colon had had a broad education. He'd been to the School of My Dad Always Said, the College of It Stands To Reason, and was now a postgraduate student at the University of What Some Bloke In The Pub Told Me." -- Terry Pratchett
 

Terry Neudorf
Junior Member
Username: Terry

Post Number: 64
Registered: 02-2003
Posted From: 192.197.71.189
Posted on Tuesday, October 11, 2005 - 07:30 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I brew with two hairy cats and two dogs hanging around. I've never had a problem, I am a little concerned with floating hair though especially when I'm tranfering to a carboy.
Sometimes worried about the dogs hooking the propane line when chasing the cats.
 

Ted Grudzinski
Junior Member
Username: Tgrudzin

Post Number: 62
Registered: 08-2003
Posted From: 208.250.29.8
Posted on Tuesday, October 11, 2005 - 08:48 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

A had a brew cat who always joined me in the basement. No one else ever does. She had a preference for Pilsner malt. Really liked the taste of it. Also loved the bubbles from the fermenter and certainly took care of the mice when they came in to a mouse's version of heaven, a warm room with a 50 lb. sacks of grain. She never bottle bowled. Do be careful not to leave a bucket of open grain, they could think it was kitty litter.
 

Bill Aimonetti
Intermediate Member
Username: Zuchinnicat

Post Number: 418
Registered: 02-2003
Posted From: 143.183.121.1
Posted on Tuesday, October 11, 2005 - 09:10 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Teds story reminded me of a friend of mine who was trying to figure out why his brews were lacking color and body. He milled his grain the night before and left them in a bucket next to his brewery. One of these nights I was visiting and noticed his dog just scarfing the milled grain. I ask if he milled his speciality malts first or last, he said he always mills his base malt first.....problem solved.
 

The Gimp
Junior Member
Username: Gimp

Post Number: 58
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 208.5.44.21
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2005 - 06:41 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My experience with cats is that one cat hair in the fermenter will ruin a batch of beer.

Major Lactic infection.
 

Geoff Buschur
Advanced Member
Username: Avmech

Post Number: 990
Registered: 06-2004
Posted From: 205.174.22.28
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2005 - 06:49 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)


"I've been drunk for 14 years...my judgment isn't what it used to be."
 

Denny Conn
Senior Member
Username: Denny

Post Number: 5156
Registered: 01-2001
Posted From: 63.114.138.2
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2005 - 07:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hmmm..with 5 cats, I've had more than 1 cat hair in a fermenter on more than one occasion. No lactic infections. Maybe I've been dodging bullets...
LIfe begins at 60...1.060, that is.
 

Tim Wi
Intermediate Member
Username: Riverkeeper

Post Number: 253
Registered: 03-2005
Posted From: 170.141.68.99
Posted on Friday, October 14, 2005 - 03:40 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Geoff, I am positive that there is no such thing. (5-stars anyway)

T