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Friday, March 12, 2004  

Two Cats, Three Humans, One Nightmare

It’s been a little over a year since Orca last rode in the cat taxi. Strat’s been in the cat taxi several times since December. I don’t even remember how long it’s been since they rode in it together. And yet somehow, they still remember that they don’t like it.

We decided to bring them both in for a checkup, and the appointment was today. And I was on my own. As in the past, I decided to leave the cat taxi open in the middle of the living room all day in order to give them a chance to get used to its existence, and then blitzkrieg them into it when it was time to go.

I should think about getting two cat taxis. Not to make it more comfortable for them, but to make it easier for me. Stuffing the second cat inside while trying to prevent the escape of the first is a tricky operation if one does not have a chainmail shirt and a tranq gun on hand. You know those trick cans of peanuts with the snakes that pop out? Try loading one of those with a spring from the suspension of an H2 and you have an idea what I was up against. These cats are both in their teens, and yet they are able to point their claws in directions that aren’t even on this plane of existence. I finally got them both in at the same time, but by the time I got the gate closed my scarf was in there with them. Also, my glasses.

Off to the vet’s office, squinting nearsightedly through the windshield through what is fortunately only a six-block drive.

Here now is a list of people Orca hates, from those she hates the most to those she hates the least:

1. Everyone.
2. Me.
3. Trash.
4. Veterinarians.

Yes, normally veterinarians are Orca’s favorite people (and they loooove her, the gullible fools), but the palpable waves of terror pouring off of Strat had her in what I can only describe as a state. There were noises coming out of that box that were positively Lovecraftian.

Once we got inside the examination room, that was the only thing coming out of the box, if they had their way. What’s the deal? They don’t want to get in the carrier at home, but they don’t want to come out of it at the vet’s office? Make up your minds!

Pried them out one at a time, at least two times each, with the vet’s assistant holding the box and me all, “Come on out, sweeties. It’s okay. Don’t make me manhandle you in front of the nice cat care professional, okay?” Quick discussion of medical history, and the assistant leaves the three of us alone. The carrier’s on the floor with the gate closed now, so the cats are huddled together on the cold table in mutual panic, paying each other more attention than they have in months. The vet comes in. Discussion of Orca’s recent weight gain. Strat’s blood sugar is a little too low, down to 76, and Orca’s bile is right where it normally is, at three point eight million.

“I see she’s got a little dandruff problem,” the doctor observes. “Is she normally like this or is it nerves?”

She is not normally like this. At the moment, Orca is putting out more flakes than a General Mills plant. Considering that this is a cat who in the past has convincingly faked nerve damage, broken legs, and cancer, I’m not too worried. Indeed, I have suddenly realized that she has formulated and is attempting to execute a plan to escape from the room a few cells at a time. She is trying to teleport herself by the sheer force of her little kitty will.

“Nerves,” I say to the doctor.

Oddly, getting them back into the carrier is much easier here in the vet’s office. The process involves opening the gate, and then closing it after they dash inside. The end.

Stop by next door to pick up some food for them. If they are excited about being in the source of all of their provisions, they don’t show it.

Back home, where, once again, the cat taxi is not where the fickle little beasts want to be. And where, after inhaling clouds and clouds of frightened-cat-matter, my allergies have turned my nose into a phlegm firehose (or phirehogse, as the case may be).

It’s a good thing cats don’t get sick as often as humans do. I don’t think I could take it.

Today’s best search phrase: "Velcrometer fake cancer." Oh, wait, that was me. Doesn't count. I'll try again.

Today's best search phrase: “Pictures of froot Puerto Ricans eat.” I hope this person isn’t looking for before and after.

posted by M. Giant 7:57 PM 0 comments


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