Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Ten Chances to Lose Your Eye

So, I have now moved in and am installed in my friend M's apartment. M and I have been friends since elementary school, and she is über cool. Her mother is also here, and she is very sweet. Also with us are the animals--M's cat and new puppy and my one year old kitty.

Now, my kitty has always been high maintenance. She is not really even good at being a cat. She is highstrung, anxious, and somewhat unfriendly at times. She's not so much a fan of being held and cuddled and touched. She is also not used to other animals.

Of course, I blame myself for this aversion to other fuzzy things. Last spring break I went out to visit Fiancé's extended family with him and his father and I left the kitty with his mother. Fiancé's mother has two older cats who are dignified and aloof but also two dogs who are jumpy, noisy, and forcefully involved. The evening I dropped her off I got the call that she had been nicknamed Tea Kettle because she would do nothing but hiss at anyone. It took her days to recover.

These new animals have been no different for her. The older cat is somewhat interested, but in a friendly way, and the little puppy is playful and wants to get up into the kitty's face. And I have forgotten to mention that the kitty is not declawed.

As a consequence, to avoid the damage that would be inflicted by the swiping that accompanies the hissing, I went to PetCo to purchase the humane plastic claw caps. The ordeal was an ordeal even at this point since I had to take her into the store to figure out which size to get her. She dug her claws into my back and growled at everyone and tried to run away while small children kept coming up to her trying to touch her and talking about the pretty kitty, ignoring their mothers' warnings not to touch the mean kitty. I was lucky to get out without a lawsuit.

The fun continued when I had to clip the claws. Yowling, growling, swiping, biting, struggling, hissing...the fun just wouldn't stop. At the end of a half hour I decided to cut my losses and just did the front claws.

The very last thing was the caps themselves. The glue tube was roughly the size of a pencil nub...maybe 2.5 inches long and no bigger around than a No. 2 pencil. I had to wrap the beast into a giant, extra thick fleece blanket with only the paw in question sticking out. Forty-five minutes of screaming, growling cat and finally I now have a cat that can't kill the other animals in the apartment.

She can't use the scratching pad, but she forgets that and tries anyway. She's been trying to lick the things off for days.

It's official: She hates me.

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