Just in time for Halloween

We started feeding a stray cat that came up this past summer, and it wasn’t long before we noticed she was getting rather fat and decided that she must be pregnant. Sure enough, several weeks ago she had a litter of kittens, and although we didn’t know where they were or how many, but we could tell she was nursing. Finally, our neighbor discovered them under the wheelchair ramp at the front of her house, so we peeked under and saw several gorgeous balls of fur. Unfortunately, they were completely feral and scared to death of humans.

Fast forward several weeks and only one kitten is still around. We have no idea what happened to the rest of them, but he and his mother frequent our back patio to take advantage of the food and water. It is impossible to touch them, but I am gaining their trust on a daily basis. Surprisingly, the kitten is the most trusting of the two, and he almost turns cartwheels trying to get to the food bowl when he hears kibble pouring in.

It’s rather cute to see them together, because he is the spitting image of his mom – only smaller. Both are pitch black, which seems just perfect for the season. Imagine how festive it would be if I could train them to sit motionless on the front stoop beside the big yellow mum and jack-o-lantern…

Blogbits

Caffeine – I’ve done pretty well with cutting caffeine out of my diet. In the last week, I’ve only had two Dr. Peppers and a few glasses of tea. Other than that, I’ve mostly had water.

Cats – I’m a big softie when it comes to starving or needy creatures, so it wasn’t a hard decision for me to start feeding the skinny feline who showed up outside. She typically shows up for kibble after I get off from work, and she rewards me for being big-hearted by pooping in the driveway.

She must have kittens tucked away somewhere, as she appears to have been nursing. I wonder how long it will be before she brings the kids over for dinner?

Wal-Mart Buggies – Every stinking time I go to WM, I get a faulty shopping cart – one that squeaks, rattles, wobbles, or wants to veer to one side or the other. I suspect those smirky door greeters are to blame, since they always select which carts are up front. I bet they pick out the most raggedy buggies they can find and laugh behind their false teeth as we try to push them into the store.

Prilosec OTC – Two words… miracle drug. It’s made a huge difference in the way I feel and pretty much eliminated the pain that I was feeling in my chest. I always assumed that acid reflux would have a burning sensation, but it turns out it can feel like pressure, too.

All grown up

Time goes by too fast. So fast that I forgot to have that important talk with my youngest kid about the evils of premarital sex. It’s a good thing she’s only a cat.

Is it possible that it has already been almost five months since I brought that tiny little kitten home from work? It seems like only a few weeks have passed since she was starving for a bottle full of kitten formula, but now she’s hungry for something entirely different. Unfortunately for us and every living thing within a 5 mile radius, our “kitten” is in heat.

It started one day last week. I noticed that she was incessantly licking herself and making strange noises – something between a meow and a purr that resembles the sound one would expect from a chipmunk. Being the ever-doting parent, I immediately placed her in the cat carrier and whisked her to the vet’s office for a checkup. You can imagine my surprise when I was told that she might be going into heat. I assured the vet that she was only around four months old, but a quick check of her records showed that she will soon be six months of age.

Since the holidays are quickly approaching and we wouldn’t have been able to give her our undivided attention while she recuperated, I scheduled her surgery for the 27th. In the meantime, we have to live with the antics of a feline who acts like she’s on Ecstacy.

I tend to humanize my pets, often referring to them as my children, talking to them as if they understand English, and sparing no expense on doctor’s visits and food. You can’t possibly comprehend how much it bothers me when my male cat, Twinkie, tries to mate with his “sister.” Even though he’s fixed and seems clueless about what he’s doing (I never had “the talk” with him, either), it sickens me that two of my kids are trying to reproduce. Ugh.

Macy Gray drives us crazy at all hours of the night – rolling around, making that annoying chipmunk sound, sticking her butt in the air. We’ve taken to affectionately calling her “Mommy’s little whore” or “Daddy’s little slut”, but she doesn’t seem to care.

I tried to talk some sense into her this evening when I explained that in a little over one week from now she will go to the vet to have her insides scooped out. I hoped that she would take our little chat to heart and stop the hormonal antics, but she promptly left my lap and began rolling around on the floor with all four legs in the air.

Damn cat.

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Still less expensive than kids

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Our youngest cat, Macy Gray, has been getting her vaccinations, which means that we have to drive her forty miles round-trip every couple of weeks, where we then shell out somewhere around $40. She was due for her last three injections today.

Our oldest cat, Blu, recently started throwing her food all around the food bowl while chewing, so I decided to check her teeth and gums yesterday and discovered that they looked red and irritated. Honey says I’m constantly looking for trouble, but I say better safe than sorry.

So, today, we packed both cats into the single pet carrier that we own and headed for the veterinarian’s office. They were stuffed in there like a couple of sardines, but we felt that it was necessary to avoid another trip later in the week. Turns out we have to drive back down on Friday anyway.

Blu’s teeth have to be cleaned, which means that they have to put her to sleep. The estimated cost is around $100, which I expected. What I didn’t expect was the $78 bill that I got at the end of today’s exam. Blu’s exam, which lasted all of five minutes, cost $30. Macy’s identical examination and three injections cost $48.

One the way home, Honey was figuring up how much money we’ve spent on Macy over the last three months, which is several hundred dollars. After a few moments, he added, “Well, I guess they’re still cheaper than kids.”

Maybe so, but I’ll be glad when this country gets a universal healthcare plan for pets.

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Blogbits

Walking – I felt completely fatigued when I got home from work today, but instead of languishing on the sofa, I decided to get some exercise. We walked a couple of miles and I found it very relaxing and energizing.

Gutters – I purchased and installed those solid gutter covers that are supposed to keep leaves out while letting the rain in. I have a nagging feeling that they were probably a complete waste of money.

Macy Gray – She’s growing like a weed and has gained a pound over the last three weeks! She amuses us constantly with her antics and simply couldn’t be cuter.

The cat people

I never thought I’d have three cats in the house. Two maybe, but never more.

We started with Blu, a shelter rescue that we fell in love with via pictures posted on Petfinder.com. After several months had gone by, we got Twinkie from a coworker. We had two “kids” that could keep each other company when we were out of the house and we figured that was that. Then Macy Gray came into our lives.

When I first brought her home, it was out of pure necessity. I had to save this kitten and make sure that she was going to be properly cared for. I figured that we would be able to find a good home for her and we’d go back to being a two-cat household. Things have a way of not always working out as planned.

We’ve had her over four weeks already and she’s growing like a weed. Honey continually reminds me that I promised we’d find her a new home, but I can’t seem to gather the courage to hang a flyer anywhere. I know that vet bills and upkeep for three cats will be rather expensive, and that there will be more cat hair to vacuum and litter to scoop, but the thought of her being mistreated makes me cringe. Even the idea of her being outside in the heat is enough to make me want to keep her.

So, for now, we are officially the cat people. No one may ever want to come to our house for dinner, but they’ll understand our predicament when they see Macy Gray’s precious mug!

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