Living with Carnivores

A vegetarian human's adventure with cats

Category: Medication

Whose Foot is that?

This little foot was seen sticking out of the blanket fort in the upper hallway. Thank heavens the human was not only paying attention to where she walked but also had her camera with her.  If you guessed that the paw/leg belongs to Caesar (hiding during the almost two weeks when she had to medicate him daily), you’d be right.

 

 

(c) Copyright 2019, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Meanest Human in the Whole Wide World

Caesar needed some dental work done. He’d already endured a previous visit to the vet during which he got his temperature taken rectally (<<An affront to anyone’s dignity!>>) and blood taken through his neck (<<Bunch of bloodthirsty vampires!>>). Needless to say, he was on guard and didn’t let the mean human get very close to him for weeks once she was out of bed and walking around. (<<Sleeping humans are safe enough to cuddle up against or to wake at 3 am to ask for a snack.>>)

In order to capture him on the day of the dental procedure, the mean human tricked him by opening up a closet door. That got him to come out from under the bed he’d been hiding under to see what was in the closet. She scooped him up and put him in the carrier.  <<Arch betrayer!>> He was so mad at the human that when they arrived at the vet’s office and had to wait 20 minutes for the staff to print out paperwork for the human to sign, that the Emperor refused to exit his carrier. He just glared through the mesh sides.When she went back to pick him up later in the day, he was still holding a grudge and resisted pets when the carrier was opened at the vet’s office. Once she got him home and put him in a bedroom to recover, he again refused to exit his carrier. The human left it on the bed and departed the room so he could get some rest. Fortunately, later in the day, his majesty decided to forgive the mean human and climbed up and lay beside her on the bed. After all, a good ruler mustn’t be seen to hold grudges for too long.

 

(c) Copyright 2019, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Kitty Colds

Okay, the human has an excuse for the lack of posting and it’s not just that the holidays were fast approaching and so were a bunch of year-end work deadlines.  The Penta Pack has been passing around a kitty cold for weeks. Fireball caught it first and got over it in 4 or 5 days, but not before he gave it to Pepe. Pepe got a nasty upper respiratory infection that required a trip to the vets for an antibiotic to clear his sinus infection. Before he finally cleared it, he passed it over to Mac, who got a miserably runny eye.  In her case, the human has had to medicate her eyes multiple times a day for 10 days, which with that wily little kitty has proven to be quite a challenge. (The human has lots of slashes in her fingers and clothing to prove it.)  We still have a few days of eye ointment to go. Hopefully the miserable excuse for a human will eventually be forgiven and trusted again. Time will tell.

 

(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photo courtesy of Pond5.com.

From Cranky to Sweet

Corky has been mighty cranky for the past many weeks. He had a flare up of painful crystals in his bladder in late October that led to a vet visit.  (A 45 minute session cost $500 USD. Then vets wonder why we don’t make those 2-3x/year wellness visits for each cat like they recommend.) After a round of antibiotics (which he didn’t need, since he had no infection) and a few days of oral pain killer (which was as painful for the human to give him as it was for Corky to receive, since he fights meds like no cat the human remembers), his symptoms abated. Still, he was a mighty cranky little kitty and was especially mean to poor Fireball. He even harassed Miss Mac. (Apparently he hasn’t been keeping up on all the celebrities and politicians who are in serious trouble due to sexual harassment issues.) He had another flare up just before Thanksgiving. Fortunately, the human had some pain meds left from the last vet vsit, which got the household through the holiday lest a visit to the emergency vet be needed. (That would have been $1300 at least.) Doubly fortunately, Corky’s vet wrote another prescription for pain meds, which the human picked up the day after Thanksgiving. And the human went back to ensuring all the kitties’ food — canned, raw freeze dried, and crunchies — were well soaked in water before the felines were given it.  Now that Cranky Corky is properly hydrated and his bladder crystals have passed, he’s back to being a sweet little kitty again. The human has even spied him sleeping next to Fireball on the bed at night. Talk about Jekyll and Hyde!

 

(c) Copyright 2017, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

 

Medicating the Merkitty

IMG_3204It’s been a very long 2 weeks in this house, as both Pepe and Mac have required twice-daily doses of antibiotic to deal with a persistent cough they both had.  Pepe had already completed a 10-day stint with the meds about 2 weeks earlier, but then the cold weather (and snow!) returned and the coughs also came back.  Apparently, the liquid antibiotic, which has to be squirted into their mouths, tastes horrid.  Since the dirty deed has to be done morning and night, there’s little time for the human to be forgiven between one bout and another. Although Pepe hates the stuff too and does interesting little dances in the human’s arms while she’s trying to hold him and open his mouth, he at least doesn’t seem to harbor too much resentment 15 minutes after being medicated. Not so with the Merkitty who, as would be expected, carries grudges a mighty long time.  Twice during the period she was getting medicated, she hid so successfully during the evening that the human finally gave up at almost midnight and went to bed. That’s not a good thing with an antibiotic, as any bacteria that are still hanging on are likely gaining immunity to the meds and will breed prolifically between doses. It’s gotten so all that all she has to do is see the human moving toward her and a look that is both panic and exasperation flits across her face, resolving into one of those famous Macaroni scowls. The human has learned to moved both fast and decisively when medicating the Merkitty, or she’ll lose several hours as Miss Macaroni hides.  The human even has received a few hisses when trying to apprehend the Watery One.  Toward the end of the period, the only way to apprehend Mac was to regain senses as quickly as possible when the kitty returned to the human’s pillow at 4:00 am for snuggles and head rollies. (As soon as the hapless human was awake enough to grab the kitty and sit up, they headed for the refrigerator and the dreaded syringe.) Fortunately, the ordeal is finally over for both kitties and the 2-legged.  Now, of course, the question is how long it will be before the Girly Girl forgives and stops running away when the human comes into sight. (heavy sigh…)

 

(c) Copyright 2016, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

 

Water-Bowl Wrangler

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Picture this:  I have identical heavy, thick-walled glazed ceramic water bowls for the cats on my first and second floors.  The glaze on the inside is even blue.

And, no, my darlings do not drink nasty city water. They sip only water that has been gently filtered to remove chlorine, fluorine, and other contaminants.

For the better part of a year, this worked quite fine.  But for some reason, over the past few months, that mischievous girl of mine has started throwing copious amounts of water onto the floor from the downstairs water bowl…often looking over her shoulder to make sure she has an audience…and not just once a day. No, she’ll sometimes flood the floor 3-4x in a row. I no more than get the last flood dried up, the bowl refilled and placed on a dry towel that, in turn, sits on a plastic placemat, then off she goes again.

I find it quite interesting that this never happens upstairs, despite the fact that the bowls are virtually identical and the water comes from the same filtered source.  In fact, for reasons I don’t understand, they hardly ever drink water up there at all, despite the fact that there is a small bowl of crunchies out.

I probably should back up and explain that Mac(aroni), my tuxedo female, generally can’t be bothered to crouch down and eat or drink like a normal cat.  Instead, she’s more likely to sit up and snake a paw into food or water bowls and eat off her mitt.

Looking for answers to this baffling behavior I read an article from a cat behaviorist that explained that cats never want to risk contaminating their water with carcasses of dead prey, so it’s important to keep food and water dishes separated.  I did this first by moving them to opposite sides of a doorway in a single room — alas, to no effect. Next I began moving the water bowl around to other rooms.  The water-bowl wrangler kept up her splashy behavior. I tried removing the towel, but water was still tossed around.  When I returned to placing a towel under the bowl, a corner of the fabric was next dragged into the water. (Can’t you just hear her thinking, “I’ll show her!”)

Her latest variation on the theme of floor flooding is to scoop water out of the bowl and then crouch down and lick water as it beads up on the towel on which the bowl sits.  Stay tuned: I’m sure there will be more.

Cats.  Go figure!

(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photo my own.