Thursday, May. 08, 2003
A few nights ago our cat Zubby got into a major fight with a stray who made the mistake of breaching our Homeland Security. Zub has very, very strong feelings about Homeland Security and spends a lot of his nights on patrol making sure that our borders are secure.
I mean, after all, strangers could be peeing on our trees for heaven's sake!
Well, a smallish tabby made the mistake of crossing into what is Zubworld on our cat's internal map of the universe and all bets were off. This was one of those death fights with unearthly screaming and a furious churning ball of interlocked cats intent on inflicting major harm.
A nekkid man sprang from our bed and because our outside hose wasn't turned on yet he had to use a broom to break up the fight. In the interests of family peace, this nekkid man will not be identified, but he bore a startling ressemblance to the Spousal Unit. He carried Zubby back into the house and we examined him. Many scratches, but they seemed superficial. Still, it's hard to tell with a long haired cat, so we kept Zub in for the rest of the night over his loud and endless protests to give him time to lick his wounds and to let the stray mull over the stupidity of crossing into our yard again.
The following night the spousal unit noticed that the Zub wasn't washing one side of his face. Since he was eating well and had lots of energy, so we decided to watch it until the next morning. Well, the next morning it didn't smell so good. Oh, crap.
Out came the kitty carrier for a trip to the vet.
Our kitty carrier has magical properties. Our kitty carrier can make our cats disappear. Oh yes, one whiff of the kitty carrier and poof our cats are gone. The cats well know that said carrier is used for one thing and one thing only and that is the much hated annual trip to the vet's for shots, ear and mouth checks, and the ever popular insertion of a thermometer in the buttal region to confirm that yes, indeed, all is well in the world of kitty health.
It took me 20 minutes to find Zub, who had cleverly squished himself in behind some suitcases stored in our closet. It's amazing how much a 15 pound cat can compact himself when he wants to. I would also like to point out that a person can only truly appreciate the amazing strength a 15 pound cat has when that person tries to pour said cat into a kitty carrier against its will.
The 45 minute drive to the vet was the usual nightmare. When the spousal unit takes the cats they are silent, serene passengers. When I take the cats, they wail for the whole trip, an unnerving stream of the kitty equivalent of, "We're all gonna die. I know it. I can feel it in my bones. Somebody, save me. I'm much, much too young to die."
I was pretty stressed out by the time I got to the vet's. There's nothing like being cooped up in a small car with a sick, wailing cat for 45 minutes to completely destroy whatever mellow might be in your life. I was terrifically worried that this was a life threatening infection, that we hadn't acted fast enough.
It was an abscess, but it was in the early stage so the vet shaved the side of Zub's face, lanced the infection, cleaned it and gave us antibiotics. She recommended we keep it clean with peroxide and that Zub stay in our house for the night so the fresh wound had a chance to heal a bit. When I opened the door to the cat carrier he practically ran in it because he knew it meant we would be heading home.
Home again, home again, dancing a jig. You can't imagine how relieved the spousal unit was when he got home last night and found out the cat would be fine.
With the abscess lanced, antibiotics coursing through his system, and a fresh meal under his belt, Zubby was back to his old self. As darkness fell, his Homeland Security duties began to call. He started to mew piteously at the spousal unit and I.
We told him that the vet said he couldn't go out. To the cat this translated as, "Blah, blah, blah, blah blah." For the whole evening, every time one of us went upstairs or downstairs towards a door, the cat rocketed along with them, piteously pleading his case.
We went to bed. The cat spent most of the night frantically mewing and clawing at the window at the foot of our bed, a window that we often use to let him in and out at night because it leads to our fire escape. When Zubby got tired of yelling and clawing at the window, he also walked over our heads in case, you know, we were sleeping or something.
This morning the spousal unit and I woke up with bags under our eyes large enough to use as cat carriers. We daubed Zubby's wound with peroxide, gave him breakfast, and jammed Zubby's two antibiotic pills down his protesting throat. He spent the whole time we were eating our own breakfasts telling us how desperately he needed to go outside, that our borders hadn't been policed in DAYS that ANYONE could be lurking out in our yard.
The spousal unit and I exchanged a glance. The adult thing to do would be to ignore the cat's protests, grit our teeth and just keep him inside. "Well, the vet did only say it was overnight …" I ventured. The front door was opened in a flash and the cat tore joyously outside.
Okay, half an hour later I'm doing the dishes and I hear the tup tup tup of little cat feet climbing our fire escape. There is the sound of a cat leaping up on to the window of our bed. There is the sound of a cat yelling and scratching to be let inside. This is the cat that made our lives forty kinds of fresh hell last night, the cat who spent the whole evening and most of the freakin' night loudly protesting about how desperately he needed to be outside.
Thirty freakin' minutes outside and he's had enough. As I write this he's crashed out on our bed, catching up on that desperately needed 22 1/2 hours of daily sleep all cats require.
Even you know what? If those Eastern faiths are right and there is such a thing as reincarnation? Forget this being human business. I am so coming back as a cat.
Goal for 2003: 500 miles - 804.5 kilometers
Want to delve into my sordid past?
She's mellllllllllllllting - Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012 - Back off, Buble - Monday, Dec. 19, 2011 - Dispersed - Monday, Nov. 28, 2011 - Nothing comes for free - Monday, Nov. 21, 2011 - None of her business - Friday, Nov. 04, 2011 -
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