Thursday, August 30, 2007

Pilling the Cat.

This is Andrew.

He is the baby of the family at 3 1/2 and, as with most babies, he is adored. Two weeks ago, he got sick and had to go to the vet. Being a cat, he chose to let us know he wasn't well at 11:30 PM on Sunday night, sparking a visit to the emergency vet. Since we weren't the only ones there, we didn't get out til 2 AM. The vet gave us pills to give Andrew twice a day. My helpful mother had this to contribute -

How to Pill a Cat

1. Pick cat up and cradle it in the crook of your left arm as if holding a baby. Position right forefinger and thumb on either side of cat's mouth and gently apply pressure to cheeks while holding pill in right hand. As cat opens mouth pop pill into mouth. Allow cat to close mouth and swallow.

2. Retrieve pill from floor and cat from behind sofa. Cradle cat in left arm and repeat process.

3. Retrieve cat from bedroom, and throw soggy pill away. Take new pill from foil wrap, cradle cat in left arm holding rear paws tightly with left hand. Force jaws open and push pill to back of mouth with right forefinger. Hold mouth shut for a count of ten.

4. Retrieve pill from goldfish bowl and cat from top of wardrobe. Call spouse from garden. Kneel on floor with cat wedged firmly between knees, hold front and rear paws. Ignore low growls emitted by cat. Get spouse to hold head firmly with one hand while forcing wooden ruler into mouth. Drop pill down ruler and rub cat's throat vigorously.

5. Retrieve cat from curtain rail, get another pill from foil wrap. Make note to buy new ruler and repair curtains. Carefully sweep shattered Doulton figurines from hearth and set to one side for gluing later. Wrap cat in large towel and get spouse to lie on cat with head just visible from below armpit. Put pill in end of drinking straw, force mouth open with pencil and blow down drinking straw.

6. Check label to make sure pill not harmful to humans, drink glass of water to take taste away. Apply Band-Aid to spouse's forearm and remove blood from carpet with cold water and soap. Retrieve cat from neighbor's shed. Get another pill. Place cat in cupboard and close door onto neck to leave head showing. Force mouth open with dessert spoon. Flick pill down throat with elastic band.

7. Fetch screwdriver from garage and put door back on hinges. Apply cold compress to cheek and check records for date of last tetanus shot. Throw tee-shirt away and fetch new one from bedroom. Call fire department to retrieve cat from tree across the road. Apologize to neighbor who crashed into fence while swerving to avoid cat. Take last pill from foil-wrap. Tie cat's front paws to rear paws with garden twine and bind tightly to leg of dining table, find heavy duty pruning gloves from shed, force cat's mouth open with small wrench. Push pill into mouth followed by large piece of filet mignon. Hold head vertically and pour ½ pint of water down throat to wash pill down.

8. Get spouse to drive you to the emergency room, sit quietly while doctor stitches fingers and forearm and removes pill remnants from right eye. Call furniture store on way home to order new table.

After laughing hysterically, we thought we'd give it a try. After retrieving the pill from Helen's hair, we thought we'd put it in liverwurst to make it go down easier. After cleaning that pill and the liverwurst from Helen's hair, we finally got it down. Helen figured all her ailments would be healed since she was wearing most of the pills we lost.

Over the past couple of weeks, Andrew has become the consumate pro at taking his pills. When he wants something, he swallows it quickly. When he's feeling unloved, he spits it back up and spends as much time in our arms as possible. The good thing is he gets to come to LBI with us each weekend as we have to keep an eye on him. The other cats have to stay home, which I'm sure he rubs in their faces whenever he can. The life this poor cat has to lead -- living in a house on the river during the week and going to the beach on the weekend. Call Kitty DYFUS someone!