Monday, 9 February 2009

MULTIPLY United Friends Challenge #117: A Cat with a Sore Throat

Potashtam's Challenge

Describe how you have helped any person or animal in need.
Write a story or poem to show how you did this.

My three cats have allowed me to live with them over the past seven years. During this time you learn a lot about how cats think and function. Basically their motto in life is “I, me and myself”.
“Mrs. Human, that is not fair” and Tabby one of my cats has appeared on the scene.
“So tell me why it isn’t fair” I asked
“Easily said Mrs. Human. It is an honour for you to live with us. Admittedly you chose me and my sister Nera, as well as Fluffy, the odd one out, but we decided to stay.”
“OK, Tabby, agreed and now can I continue.”
“No problem” was the answer, although when a cat says that, do not believe him. A cat will always find a problem.
It all started last week. I arrived home from work and my husband told me that Tabby was having problems. She seemed to have pain when she swallowed.
“Now that really hurt” Tabby tells me. “It seemed as if I had no space left in my throat for anything to pass down. That was the reason why I stopped eating. Even a nice juicy piece of tuna fish would not have tempted my feline longings; I just did not feel like doing anything. Just sat there and had to put up with the pain in my throat.”
“So to continue my part of the story, if I may Tabby.”
“You may Mrs. Human.”
As cats are so defenceless when they have a health problem my husband and me decided that Tabby should visit the vet the next day. It was now evening and the vets would be closed, just open for an emergency. Although it seemed Tabby had a painful problem, it could wait until the next day.
“Mrs. Human, no-one asked me, otherwise I would have told you that waiting a complete night was not very pleasant. On the other hand, I did not really feel like a trip in the car to the vets. At home is always the best place to be.”
“Yes, Mrs. Human”
“I will continue.”
The next morning arrived and as coincidence would have it, it was the beginning of a few days holiday I had taken from work. I called the vet and told her my problem, and she said to come straight away. Now my husband and I had to be clever. I fetched our cage from the cellar but kept it outside. If I had brought it into our home and Tabby saw it, then she would have disappeared.
“Mrs. Human, can you alter the last part of your story. It reads as if I am frightened of a cage. This is not true; a cat is not frightened of anything. It is more a misunderstanding. I mean how would you feel to be picked up and forced into four narrow walls and afterwards be locked in. It doesn’t get better when you are picked up and put into a car. Then the real torture begins.”
“OK Tabby, you are not frightened of the cage, just a misunderstanding. I was just wondering why you run away and hide in the most impossible places when you see the cage. The only way we got you this time was because you did not see the cage, Mr. Human picked you up and I quickly fetched the cage. Before you could say Kit Kat you were in the cage with no problem.”
“Mrs. Human do you know how foolish a cat feels when he is tricked in that way? I almost forgot my sore throat.”
I will now continue and I hope with no unnecessary interruption from Tabby, although she is still sitting next to me at the computer reading every word I write.
We now had a Tabby cat with a sore throat packed into a cage and I put her in the car. Luckily the vets is only a five minute drive from where I work so we were soon there. It was early in the morning, half past seven to be exact. It was very early in the morning, I had not even had time for my breakfast. The vet had a quick look at Tabby and said I would have to leave her there for a closer examination. They would have to look down her throat to make sure she had not swallowed anything and to see what was really wrong.
“Mrs. Human, if I had been asked I would have said I had swallowed nothing, I just had a very sore throat.”
“Tabby, unfortunately not all humans speak feline speech, so you would not have been understood. It is only because I can read your mind after I have been living with you for the past seven years, that I somehow know what is wrong.”
I drove home without Tabby hoping that it was nothing serious. The vet called me about one hour later by telephone. They had put Tabby to sleep for a few minutes and had a look down her throat with one of their instruments. It was confirmed that her throat was swollen and very sore. We were glad that she had not swallowed anything, but it was clear that Tabby needed treatment. She had tonsillitis. I never realised that cats could have such a complaint. I remember as a child being in hospital for a few days when my tonsils were removed, but I would never have thought that a cat could have an infection of her tonsils: poor Tabby. I was told I could pick her up again in the afternoon and the vet would tell me what the further treatment would be. When I arrived at the vets Tabby had completely recovered from her small dose of anaesthetic.
“You must be joking Mrs. Human. I felt tired and droopy, no exactly the life and soul of the cat party.”
“Well you looked ok to me Tabby; nice and quiet and sleepy in your cage.”
The vet gave me some antibiotics in tablet form with instructions to give Tabby a tablet in the morning and one in the evening. This was naturally easier said than done. Tabby had been given some treatment already at the vets so I just had to start with the tablets the next day. That was when the problems really started.
“What do you expect Mrs. Human. That you can give me a tablet and I will swallow it with no problem. No way. I am a cat and do what I want.”
“But Tabby I mixed the tablet with some nice tuna fish.

“Mrs. Human, you could have mixed it with the best quality caviar, but I can assure you I do not swallow things I do not know. Do you really think we cats are so stupid that we do not realise when something is hidden in our food. Do not forget. We were once worshipped as Gods and are not to be treated like some sort of gullible creation that just nods and says yes please when one of these human species tries to trick us to eating something we do not want.”
The result of this refusal to take antibiotics was that I had to phone the vet the next day and explain my dilemma. The vet told me to bring Tabby again, so we had a repeat performance of the day before. Tabby was again put into the hated cage and driven to the vets and got two jabs with her medicine and also an infusion to make sure she did not dehydrate, because she was also not drinking. This all started on Wednesday morning and the last visit to the vets was on Saturday morning. By this time Tabby had been given two jabs of antibiotics every morning and a daily infusion.
“So how are you feeling now Tabby?” I asked her after the last visit.
“I still have a slight sore throat, but can at least swallow my food again, although I have to have a little coughing session afterwards. Drinking is no problem any more, and I can also sleep much better. I don’t think I have to go to the vets any more.”
“That is not your decision Tabby, but the doctors.”
It was true she seemed a lot better and now I was back to giving her two tablets during the day. As her throat did not hurt so much any more, we decided to try a trick again with the tablets. This time we were prepared. Over the years we found that cats like yogurt, at least our three do, so a special tub of yogurt was bought for Tabby. We noticed that caramel seemed to be the favourite flavour, so we decided that it would be caramel yogurt. The tablet was crushed by using the back of a spoon and mixed with the yogurt: success! Tabby swallowed the yogurt together with her tablet, no problem. Tomorrow it is back to the vets for a check-up to see how she is progressing but she now seems to be over the worst. This is going to be an expensive illness I think.

That night Tabby was settling down for a sleep in her cat cushion high up on a cupboard and her litter sister Nera was laying in another cushion next to her.
“Yes Nera”
“How are you feeling now? Has your throat got better?”
“No problem Nera, you just have to do it the right way.”
“What do you mean Tabby?”
“It took ages to get into those human’s inferior brains that a cat has to be treated with utmost respect, before it does what they want it to.”
“So what was the solution Tabby.”
“Based on earlier experience, the humans remembered that I have a sort of weakness for caramel yogurt. I mean I would do almost anything for caramel yogurt. Ever swallow the tablets crushed into it.”
“Oh I see Tabby”
and Nera and Tabby closed their eyes and spent the night in cat nirvana.

United Friends Challenge #117: A Cat with a Sore Throat

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