Winter break is the time to complete all of those annoying chores you’ve been putting off during the term. For example, yesterday my car passed its inspection. Woo hoo!
And today, Isaac and Emily passed their inspection. By which I mean the vet found that they’re in good health (though Isaac, like his owner, really needs to lose some weight.)
Vet day is always very exciting. First comes the ritual of wrestling the cats into the carrier. I have a large carrier, really intended for small dogs, that comfortably fits both of them. I figure they take some comort from knowing they are not being tormented alone. But they are clever critters, and as soon as one of them sees the other getting stuffed into the carrier, it suddenly becomes every cat for himself. The second one dives under the bed or behind a bookcase or finds some other inaccessible spot.
The trick, of course, is to bring both of them into the bathroom before trying to stuff them into the box. Then by the time they realize they’ve been had, there’s no place for them to hide. Cats got the claws, the agility, the speed and the cool night vision. But humans got the intelligence!
Into the carrier, out to the car, down the road, pulled into the vet’s office. Announced myself in the waiting room, put the cats down. They immediately had to suffer the indignity of a Golden Retriever giving them a vigorous sniff. Happily, he quickly got distracted by the Boxer at the opposite end of the waiting room, leaving my cats to suffer in peace.
The vet did her thing, and the cats behaved like perfect little angels throughout. Didn’t give her any grief, even when they got their shots. But on the way home they deicded to show me what they thought of this little excursion. One of them opened up every non-head based bodily orifice (I’m looking in your direction, Emily). Charming.
But the joke was on them, because this meant they had to get a bath as soon as they got home. Guess the one thing they hate more than going to the vet! As soon as Isaac discerned my intentions (I was holding him perilously close to the bathtub tap) he tried to climb me like a tree. Get to higher ground and all that. After marvelling at how long and sharp their claws are, I patiently explained to my wet squirming cat that he was not being released to the rest of the house in his present, urine-soaked condition. His anguished, blood-curdling meows suggested a lack of comprehension of this reality. Never before has a cat been so put upon as he was being put upon right now, said those meows. Emily was more docile. She’s a very serious cat to begin with, and figures a certain amount of suffering is just part of life.
Lathered ‘em up, rinsed them off, and dried them as best I could (the hair dryer also doesn’t rank very high on their list of favorite things). Opened the bathroom door and they barrelled out at fifty miles an hour. Emily found the darkest, dustiest corner of the basement to hide in. Isaac felt that was too much trouble, and curled up on the futon and went to sleep. That’s where I left them when I came in to the office this afternoon.
Now I have to go home and clean the fur off the bathtub. Maybe I should invest in one of those baby tubs. There has to be a better way to get shampoo off a cat then merely holding himm directly under the tap.