Growing up, we had one cat named Cleo, a queenly calico with a fitting name. Most of the time Cleo minded her own royally-viewed life, but every once in a while she would saunter past my sister and I as we laid on the floor in front of the tv, letting us know she felt like being scratched for a while and we had permission to do so. So we’d oblige, still fixated lifelessly on the movie we’d agreed upon and trying to avoid the other end of her nose.
But as much as I adored Cleo, I had no intention of getting another cat after she died, not because I didn’t like them, but because at some point in life I developed an allergic reaction to their coats. Suffice it to say, I would have been much more heartbroken if that allergy had been toward dogs.
It wasn’t until moving to the farm when I learned I could have a cat without it dwelling in my home and making me sneeze and itch and swell. The first adorable feline to cross our paths was a quiet kitten with an easy-going disposition, affectionately referred to as Black Kitty.
She has been a stellar example of what a farm cat should be, friendly yet independent, living her life and not making any trouble.
We appreciate her and the work she does around here.
About a year later, the vet clinic called to inform us of a little gray kitten who had been injured by a fan blade. They asked if we wanted him, and I wasn’t sure until I saw him. Naturally, I wanted him real bad after seeing his tiny alien head with big green eyes.
That’s how they operate, you know.
He was a cute kitten gray kitten, but it didn’t take long to notice a faraway twinkle in his eye, followed by him using my fingers to sharpen his vampire-like teeth.
Ouch that hurts, a lot, I thought, but strangely it only increased my maternal instincts over him, knowing that other creatures might not be as patient as I was and he was bound to get into trouble with that up-to-something look in his eyes.
It didn’t long for him to prove me right. It began with him hobbling toward the deck, back leg up and dangling in a sickening manner that can only be interpreted as a bone break.
The vet fixed him up nicely, we fed him his antibiotics again, and he seemed to move on with life steadfastly.
The last year or so has also been a different type of turmoil for my coal-colored kitty, less independent injuries and more so with help from his adversary, a bigger male of the orange-coated kind.
Fixing both hasn’t seemed to make a difference, and gray kitty keeps coming back with more battle wounds, the latest a swollen club foot with scratches all over.
I am at my wit’s end with this cat. I am also wondering if this isn’t a veterinary conspiracy to give away cute kittens who are pre-programmed to need many future vet clinic visits.
If so, they had our number big time, because this cat has seen the vet more times in his life than our dogs combined.
I wonder if I shouldn’t just leave him at the vet’s this time, considering he is not much of a hunter anyway.
Look at that face. That’s a face that knows he’s not going anywhere.
Sigh… Catch you later, gotta go to the vet clinic now.