Cat blog about my life with many, many cats.

Saturday, December 18, 2004

Roman Wonders What Creature We've Let Loose in Our House

Most of our feline household seems to understand that Teddy, our injured cat, is spending much of his time isolated in an upstairs bedroom until he's completely healed from his recent tail surgery. Tiger, for instance, who has always been friendly to fellow tabby Teddy, doesn't even bat an eye when we let Teddy out of his room so he can have a little jaunt around the house.

You have to picture poor Teddy as he looks now - he's wearing this huge, saucer-shaped, blue collar around his neck so he won't reach back to his hindquarters and muck up the stitches he received in his tail during surgery. And also, he has a tiny, stubby tail now, so he resembles a furry little piggy more than a cat when you look at him from some angles.

Most of the cats don't seem to react when this apparition makes an appearance, marches through the house, and settles down in his favorite window seat for a nice afternoon nap.

But I don't think Roman got the memo about Teddy. Roman is our orange boy, one of the "kittens," although he and sister Becka are over two years old by now and don't really qualify as being kittens anymore. To me, though, Roman will always be momma's little boy.

Anyway, whenever Teddy is out and about, Roman freezes in place, and his eyes get really big, as if he's wondering "Who let the ET into the house, and how long is he staying?" Poor Roman is completely shocked from his sightings of Teddy.

Telepathically, I've been trying to send a lot of reassuring energy to Roman and to let him know that, while Teddy is healing, he has to wear that silly collar, but he's still the same big loveable Teddy underneath all that.

I'm not sure if the message is getting through.

Cat management is so interesting! If I didn't work from home, I wouldn't know how I'd manage. At least when you have an invalid cat and you are on the premises, you can attempt to make things more comfortable for him.

Poor Teddy.

The good news is that Teddy received a big thumbs-up from the vet, and he's doing really well. His stitches will come out right after Christmas, a painless, in-house procedure that takes about five minutes, and then Teddy can return to some semblance of normalcy. He can go back outside again if he wants to (I shiver at the very thought of it, though. Hunters in our area have seen a coyote out in the woods carrying a cat in its mouth!) So I'm going to keep encouraging the cats to STAY INSIDE. A monster lurks in the woods, and the little ones aren't safe!

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Teddy the Cat No Longer Has Much of a Tail

Poor Teddy, the latest adoptee in our feline family, had a run in with either a neighboring farm dog or a coyote Sunday afternoon. His tail was badly mangled and mostly unsalvagable. So he had to undergo a partial tail amputation (recommended in cases where the tail is already going necrotic, like his was.) This stems the tide of potential infection and gives him the highest chance of returning to a normal, albeit tail-less, life.

To us, this was a terrible choice to make, but it was basically either that or watching him die from infection over the next few days. We prayed about it and got that Teddy still wanted to be a part of our household, because he's made a real place for himself here over the past year since he first arrived last winter as a displaced homeless cat. We love him dearly. He's an affectionate lap cat whose only desire is to be rubbed and cuddled. Actually, all of our cats are like that, which makes us very busy throughout the day! There are always a couple of cats competing for lap time in any given moment.

The good news is that Teddy is doing GREAT. He's eating normally, doesn't seem to be in any discomfort, and has adjusted easily to wearing this funky oversized color he has to have on to keep him from licking his tail area. He receives medicine twice a day and doesn't even mind when I give him that (which is great. Some of our other cats really resist when you try to administer oral antibiotics.)

Right now, we have him in the spare bedroom, isolated. After he gets a check up from the vet we'll probably allow him to wander freely around the house again, but he can't go outside until he's fully recovered. Teddy is an indoor/outdoor cat, as are most of our cats, and the challenge with cats who like to go outdoors is that they really get rammy and intense if they can't go out! So since we live on a 100 acre isolated farm property, we let them come and go through cat doors we have installed in the basement.

There's always a risk with letting cats go outside, but with eight cats, most of whom demand to go outside, it's not practical to force them all to stay in. I wish we could just keep them all inside, though. In the winter months, most of them are inside 80% of the time, snuggling and staying warm. So that's good.

Thanks for sending any prayers or positive thoughts Teddy's way. It looks like he'll be fine. He'll just have to get used to not having a tail to help him counter-balance when he jumps up and down on counters and so forth.

Poor guy!

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Cat Walks Across Siberia to Get Home

Now THERE'S a long walk: