10-30-06

The spud, my mother, and I went to the pet store because it was time for Maddy to have her second vaccinations. Maddy was SO GOOD the entire way there, didn’t make a single peep, just sat in her carrier and looked around. She was really good in the store, too. A lot of people take their dogs into the pet store and Maddy saw a couple of them, and didn’t hiss or spit or anything, just looked curiously at them.

She wasn’t crazy about the shot, but she handled it pretty well.

Thursday morning I got up early, packed Maddy up in her carrier, and took her to the vet. She hit two pounds on Monday and the person who’s adopting her (who is not, for the record, ME) wants to adopt her this weekend and I was hoping I could get her spayed before that happened (it’s the shelter’s policy not to adopt out kittens ’til after they’re fixed), and was pleased to see that her recent voracious eating had brought about the needed weight gain. So it was off to the vet for Miss Maddy, who also got an ID chip.

I dropped Maddy off at the vet, then drove from Ardmore to Smallville – a drive that took me about 25 minutes. In Smallville I went into the house and fed the stray Momma cat, the Daddy cat, and the kittens.

Did I even mention that Fred lured them into the house Tuesday evening, and they’d been staying in the master bedroom? They adapted pretty well, which was probably helped by the fact that we got into the habit – a BAD habit, probably – of taking canned food to them a couple of times a day.

All the cats were suffering from diarrhea, which made the litter box situation pretty nasty (and WAY smelly, as you can imagine), so I took a third litter box with me, bought some new litter (made for “small spaces”), and dumped out the old litter from the other two boxes, cleaned the boxes, and refilled them with fresh litter.


No, I don’t have cats. Why do you ask?

I fed the cats, swept the floor of the master bedroom, and headed back to Madison.

Thursday evening I went to pick up Maddy, brought her home and let her out of her carrier, worried that she might be in pain and need to be put in her room, away from the boys and their rambunctiousness. Instead, she bounced out of the carrier, bounced around the room, jumped on my mother’s feet, jumped on Mister Boogers, and howled to be fed.


I’d say she wasn’t too traumatized.

Friday I had to get up bright and early again, this time to go to the Smallville house and box up Momma Kitty and Daddy Kitty. They had an appointment to be tested, get all their shots, and be spayed and neutered. I was worried that it was going to be really hard to get them in the carriers, but all I had to do was walk through the door with a plate of canned cat food, put it down on the floor, and as soon as they came running over, I picked up Momma and Daddy and put them each in a carrier and close the door.

They freaked OUT, running around in circles and trying to dig their way out of the carriers. I felt like a total jerk, traumatizing the poor things first by locking them in a room, and then putting them in carriers. Either they’d never been in carriers before or they HAD and knew that bad things happen after they put you in a carrier.

They calmed down pretty quickly, and I put the carriers in the back seat placed so that they could see each other. Then I drove from Smallville to Ardmore in the pounding rain, which was OODLES of fun. To add to the fun, Momma Kitty howled most of the way, with Daddy Kitty chiming in every now and then.

At the vet’s office, I told them the story of Momma Kitty and Daddy Kitty, and when we went back to weigh them, found that they both weighed just under 8 pounds. Since all the And3rson kitties weigh 9 pounds or more, you can imagine how little Momma and Daddy Kitty look to me.

I had to give them names for the cats, and since I would have felt like a dork telling them that the names were Momma Kitty and Daddy Kitty, I named them on the spot.


Maxi.


And Newt.

Isn’t it nice that I named cats that aren’t mine?

Anyway, I asked them to call me after the testing (they test for Feline Leukemia and FIV) to let me know what the results were, and then I left.

As I walked through the door at home, the phone was ringing and my mother held the phone out to me.

“I didn’t know who it was, so I didn’t answer it,” she said. I looked at the caller ID and saw that it was the vet’s office, and my heart sank. I was POSITIVE it was bad news. I called them back, and they put the vet on the phone with me.

The testing came back just fine, AND it was the vet’s opinion that Maxi wasn’t pregnant. Fred and I were pretty sure she was, because she’d started to get kind of barrel-bellied recently, and Fred thought when he’d picked her up the day before that he could feel the head of a kitten. If the vet had determined that she was pregnant, we were going to let her have the kittens and then have her spayed when they were weaned.

I’ve gotta say – I was WAY relieved to find out that she wasn’t pregnant.

We talked about what shots Maxi and Newt needed, and the vet told me that I could pick them up after 5:00.

A few hours later, the phone rang. It was the vet’s office again, and the woman I talked to told me that (1) They’d come through their respective operations just fine (2) Newt had giardia and (3) They both had ear mites. They told me that slippery elm bark could help soothe their digestive systems while they were being treated for giardia, and so instead of hanging out in the living room reading, I spent the next two hours going from store to store looking for powdered slippery elm bark. Which I found at Garden Cove, the health food store in Huntsville.

Around 4:15, my mother and I went to the vet clinic and picked up Maxi and Newt, who regarded us warily, and drove from Ardmore to Smallville, where we went to the house and put Maxi and Newt in the laundry room with a litter box, bowl of food, water, and a couple of cat beds.

We’re keeping them at the house until they’re done with their giardia medication – which will be tomorrow evening – and Maxi’s incision has gotten a good head-start on healing before we take them over to the neighbor’s house.

Oh, an interesting side note: the vet estimated Maxi’s age at about two years. When I asked her about Newt, she paused and said “Is there any reason to think they might not be related?” We had thought that maybe he was her kitten from a previous litter and I told the vet that, and she said that was pretty likely. He’s not fully grown yet, though she didn’t really give me an estimate on his age.

The kittens are going to be spayed and neutered (did I mention there are three boys and one girl?) tomorrow, so I’ll have to leave the house early, go to Smallville, put the kittens in carriers, drive to Ardmore, drop them off, drive to Madison, pick up my mother, and take her to the airport. Then in the evening I’ll pick the kittens up at the vet’s, take them to Madison (where they’ll take over Maddy’s room – how RUDE, to be displaced like that) and get them settled in.

You could say I’m using up a lot of gas lately.

Oh, and the kittens have been named, courtesy of Fred. Meet…


Fezzik.


Inigo.


Westley.


And Princess Buttercup.

Yeah, Fred’s a Princess Bride fan.

Saturday morning I went out to Smallville, scooped litter boxes, talked Fred through what medication to give which cats (the kittens are now being treated for giardia as well), swept the master bedroom (those kittens can scatter that kitty litter all over the place), and went back to Madison.

In closing, check out the slippers my mother bought for herself. She bought me a pair, too (which I don’t get until Christmas), and I told her the other day that they look like Muppet slippers, as if perhaps they were made from the skin of a slaughtered Grover.

Maddy seems to like them.

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Meester Boogers, he hate you.

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