The Felis silvestris catus, otherwise known as the Cat, is a cute, cuddly, independent mammal that lives a very low maintenance life. As long as they have food, water, litter, and something to scratch they are all set for the duration of the day. Other than the goldfish, Cats are probably the easiest pet to own.
I have never been fond of cats. I know everything I just said sounds like an endorsement for kitty cats everywhere, but there are some things about cats, that I hate. For starters, it grosses me out when they lick themselves. I can’t stop thinking about that when I scratch their head, or run my hand down their back. I do it anyway, but I assure you I wash my hands as soon as my moment of cat interaction ends. Granted I wash my hands obsessively as is, but still, yuck.
Another downside to cats, is their litter box. I hate the smell of ammonia mixed with whatever freshener, the litter companies deem necessary for masking the smell of cat doo and pee. It does not work. If anything, it makes it worse. It’s one of those smells that goes straight to the brain and embeds it self in your cells, eating away slowly at your sanity. Bit by bit, your common sense and better judgement being destroyed by the smell of a freshening agent “masking” the smell of cat defecation. That whole “cat lady” thing makes a little bit of sense now, doesn’t it?
Despite all the negative pondering I can do about cats (and there is more), I have really enjoyed a few cats in my life. My aunt has a great cat named Smokey. She is sweet, but she is an indoor outdoor cat. She has access to a little cat door in the garage, where she is free to go outside (where she poops and pees) and come back in at her own will. Another cat I have enjoyed, comes from my youth. His name was Lucifer (funny enough, that goes along with another thing I can say I hate about cats. I think they are spawned from hell.) and again he was a cat that spent most of his time outdoors. He was what you might call a “barn cat.” He lived in the barn on my mom’s property in Missouri. The thing about Lucifer that I enjoyed so much was his dog like personality. He knew his name, and came when called. He napped with the dogs, played with the dogs, and ate dog food with the dogs. There could be a logical explanation for this canine like feline.
Lucifer came to our farm one day from God knows where. He was a stray. We had a lot of female cats in the barn, maybe a few of them where in heat and he smelled the fresh pussy (strictly for the sake of talking about cats). We noticed him one day, and he never left. He knew a good thing when he found one. Lucifer had food, water, females everywhere, and people that didn’t care that he was there. What red-blooded male wouldn’t have the right mind to stay (maybe one that ingested too much feces riddled cat litter, but that’s besides the point). So my mom, being the caring soul that she is, figured she would go ahead and give him shots and worm him and then give him some flea stuff. Now, my mom is an amateur veterinarian, as most farm folk are, so she had all the drugs and needles and miscellaneous equipment necessary to preform a field vet check on this new, found, friendly feline. There was just one problem, she only had flea stuff for a 50 lbs or above dog, not cat flea stuff.
“No worries,” she said, “I’ll just use half the dosage.”
Made sense at the time, anybody with half a brain knows that a cat weighs about half as much as a 50 lbs dog, so half the dosage, why not?
So, she did it. She applied half the dosage to Lucifer’s back. All was going well until about ten minutes later my mom noticed poor Lucifer twitching and squirming all over the ground. In a panic my mom ran to the cat picked him up, now he is vomiting and spewing all sorts of nasty fluid from all of the holes in his tiny little head, and she threw him into the tack room. She didn’t want my brothers and I to come home from school and see a dead cat, so she thought she would hide it from us and tell us he just wandered away the same way he wandered in. My mom went about the rest of her chores, surely feeling bad for the poor kitty she just killed, but living on a farm with dozens of animals to worry about, one little cat isn’t going to be the biggest concern.
It’s been about forty-five minutes or so, and my mom has finished her chores, washed up and made her self some lunch. She finishes up her sandwich, cleans up the kitchen, watches some T.V. and goes back out to do the next round of chores. She has all but forgotten about the dead cat hidden in the tack room, when all of a sudden, she sees the little black fur ball walking around in the yard. After a double take, she runs to the tack room to check to see if she is going crazy. The door is open the convulsing cat is gone and my mom is laughing to herself. For the rest of Lucifer’s days he was the best dog any cat could possibly be.
Now that I have reminisced about the cats in my life that I have liked, it’s best I start talking about the new cat my girlfriend and I acquired from my mom (don’t worry she didn’t give him any field vet check-ups). His name is Danny Zuko, because he is full of GREASE LIGHTNING!!! and so far, he has been 2 parts sweet, and 1 part reckless, full of danger, and extremely entertaining to watch. He’s between 4 and 6 months old, and as of Monday, castrated and vaccinated (by a proper vet). Danny Zuko and I are pretty good buddies so far. I hope our relationship can grow.