Monday, August 15, 2011

Dr. Bentley, We'll See You Next Week

When poor darling Fatty has to go to the vet, she gets very very very upset. 

Fatty is (thankfully) afraid and respectful of me as her most present, large, and loud authority figure, so she'll comply with me when I have to shove her into her Fatty carrier and put her in the car for her appointment.  However, from a specific incident involving 2 parents, a Desperate Housedaughter on vacation in California, and a non-compliant feline who ran and hid under the bed at the sight of her carrier being pulled out mere minutes before the vet appointment, I have learned that I must take out Fatty's carrier ahead of time.  Specifically, at least one week in advance for her to see it, acclimate, and then be shoved into it at an unknown and random time.  I just took it out today for her appointment next week, in fact!

Lest you find this method cruel, please try it yourself.  It works amazingly.  The element of surprise is critical.  Poor Fatty doesn't see it coming, and it's hilarious!!!!  Getting her in requires one firm shove, and then it's over.  Truly miraculous!

En route to the vet is when Fatty is the worst.  She meows the entire way there, and by meows I mean great big loud moans of disgust and horror like a baby whale dying.  The production only gets more intense as we stop the car, head into the waiting room, and then inevitably hang out for a bit until they're ready for her.  She wails so loudly that the people behind the desk look at me the way I look at moms of 4 year olds in the grocery store checkout line.  Sorry ladies, I get it now and will stop judging.

After we're escorted to the exam room, the vet tech attempts to lure Fatty out of her carrier, with no success as Fatty has now smushed herself to the furthest back point in the container and cannot be reached.  Super!  So then we just go with the flip the carrier on its side "dump-and-let-gravity-do-the-work" method, and the cat has no choice but to slowly slide down and plop onto the stainless steel exam table.  She shoots me an angry stare but then focuses her attention on the vet tech and hypervigilance.  I've watched enough Cesar Milan to know that I shouldn't coddle Fatty while she's at the vet, so I just ignore her and discuss the appropriate percentage of protein that should be in her diet.

When the vet tech leaves to get the doctor, Fatty makes sure she sits with her back fully turned to me.  I attempt to console her with the result that she turns her fluffy face toward me, unleashes a string of meowing profanity, and clearly wills me dead with what she wishes were her eye guns.  I never get a look so injurious from this animal except in this exact scenario, and she wants to make sure I know that what is going on here is UN. AC. CEPTABLE.  The look she's giving me implies the feeling I have anytime Fatty wakes me up at 5 AM (when I'll often mentally picture her bursting into a furry ball of flame).  She'd like me to go up in smoke and go to hell, in whatever order.

Then the doctor comes in, and BAM!  Fatty turns the tables big time!!  The loathing-filled creature of 15 seconds ago has been replaced by a sweet Southern belle greeting Dr. Bentley like she's a long lost relative.  Maybe it's her defense mechanism, but Fatty is so freaking nice to the vet that I have to stop and thank Jeebus for sending me a lovely fluffpuff like her.  I used to have one of those cats that unleashed fury and madness on the vet, clawing and attacking and injuring before escaping onto the highest shelf in the room, out of reach for at least 30 minutes.  Once a vet had to get stitches because of him.  Trust me, vets hate you after that. 

Not Fatty, though!  She's a sweetheart.  She gets felt up, told she's fat (not unlike my own doc appointments), and then is allowed to leave.  My fluffy baby jumps back in her carrier as soon as its made available, and she's generally quieter on the way home.  As soon as we get home, she runs and hides for hours, giving me the cold shoulder until her next meal or she reaches forgiveness, whichever comes first.

Tell me about your pets, readers!  I love a good going to the vet story. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Funk of 40,000 Years

I have a storied and somewhat ill-evolved history with squirrels.  For over 25 years, whenever someone called them rats with a fluffy tail, I defended their fluffy cuteness.  When walking through the Public Garden, I would often stoop down to feed one of them a potato chip directly from my hand.  When I would see one crossing the street, I would slam my brake and swerve to avoid hitting them.  In short, I was a squirrel's friend and a real delight.

Then came San Francisco.  Behold the photographic evidence:

See that little grey blur right in the middle of the picture?  That's a squirrel charging at me in Golden Gate Park.  That little bugger not only chased me down, it also climbed my pant-leg to get to my chocolate chip scone.  I shook it off, but not without severe emotional trauma. 

Look, I was so pro-squirrel, even after this event, that I just laughed at the cherished memory of it scaling my leg past my kneecap in order to swipe food from me.  But squirrels, you have done me wrong now.  Very very very wrong.

The date:  this past Monday night.  The time:  9 PM.  The scene:  Me going to the fridge to eat something despite the fact that I wasn't hungry.  Scene:

DH:  "Mom, WHAT is that smell????????????"

Mom:  "Your dad ate some canteloupe [sidebar:  I hate canteloupe and it smells like horrible rancid crap to me, so this was a likely scenario.]

DH:  "NO no no no no no no this is WAAAAAHAAAY worse than that.  EW!  [sniffs air while fridge door swings shut]  It's coming from there [points toward study, two rooms away]!!!!!!"

DH and Mom walk towards study, stench gets severely worse and very very overwhelming.

DH:  "Ewwwwwwwwwwwww WTF it reeks in here!!!!!!!!  It smells like DEATH.  I told you we have critters in the attic!  The effing pest guy came and everything!  It must have died in the wall!!!!!!  BLECH."

Mom:  "I don't smell it."  [ calls dad over]

Dad:  "I don't smell anything."

DH:  "BBBRRRRRRRRAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!"  [calls fire department]

The fire department came over and told us, yes it's a dead squirrel somewhere in the wall, stinking up our house for conceivably the next 4-6 weeks or more until it decomposes and gives us respite from it's disgusting malodorous body smell. 

In short, squirrels of the world, I'm SO OVER YOU.  You've lost an ally this week.  I might just go buy this mug:

Update:  As of right now, 8/4/11 at 11 PM, the smell has VANISHED.  WTF??????