Today is the day that 6 of our 8 cats visit the vet!
Run for your lives! Save yourselves! Take me with you!
*Cue screams* I know, first of all, you’re probably screaming (or is that just me?) because you just found out that we have 8 cats. That, I promise you, is no big deal. They are awesome cats who pretty much mind their own business and just check in with me 2 or 3 times a day to snuggle, eat, ask for treats, or sleep on my computer. I know 8 sounds like a lot but 364 days out of the year, it isn’t. Our house is big enough, we have a few acres with the most awesome cat fence known to man, and we have a pretty stable routine which keeps the insanity to a minimum. Yes, I vacuum up more cat hair in a week than most people do in a lifetime but the trade-off is so worth it. They are hilarious, adorable, super sweet felines that make me laugh or smile constantly throughout my day. For instance, right now while I’m typing this Betty is keeping me company in her new favorite position, with her body lifted off the table so she can hold onto my left arm while she sleeps. Most of the time, I get a lot of love from these sweet babies.
But today, on this darkest of all days, I get nothing but trouble. See, 2 of our cats are strays. And they came to live with us at different points in the year. So their yearly checkups are spread out in different months. But these 6 cats who are making my life miserable today were all part of the same adorable litter of kittens. They are all the exact same age and so all their check-ups fall on the exact same day. Hence the problem. Not only does it cost a small fortune for all their shots, vaccinations, preventatives, etc., but they also all have the same extreme aversion to visiting the vet and, I swear, they spend the entire year planning how they are going to get out of it. And 6 cats, when they have joined together for a common goal, are a formidable enemy. They have also apparently enlisted our special needs beagle Woody to join in the fight to break my brain. Woody, on top of his physical issues, also has anxiety issues and has trouble when anybody leaves the house. He knows what suitcases mean and he knows what cat carriers mean and he has a hard time dealing with both realities. And did I mention he’s a beagle? So, while at 8 a.m. this morning (you’re welcome neighbors), [L] and I are chasing and trapping kitties, Woody is baying his fool head off out of fear that we’re packing everyone up so we can leave him and never, ever return! A fear that is completely justified since we have done that…oh, NEVER! But how do you reason with a scared and shaky beagle? You don’t. You just plug up your ears and press on. You coax one cat out from under the couch. Then you climb on the kitchen counter and snatch another from the top of the refrigerator. Eventually, you chase the rest of them down and pack them all in the car so you can drive to the vet to the sound of the hard-luck-kitty-club crying in your ears about the injustice of interrupting their cushy little kitty lives once a year in an effort to KEEP THEM ALIVE AND HEALTHY. Then you walk into the vet, try and ignore the dollar signs in the doctor’s greedy, beady eyes, and weep when it’s over as you pay the bill.
Last year I was fortunate enough to be out of the country when this day arrived and I was kinda hoping that would be the case this year too. And now I can only wonder what 2 toddlers will add to the mix next year. Will [A] and [G] be chasing cats with me? Will the cats recruit them to team NO-VET? Or will they be crying in the corner with Woody? Will I be crying in the corner with Woody? I hope they’ll join our side because we are already woefully outnumbered & we could really use some more players. At least we have another year to prepare. And to save up. And to remember why we do it in the first place.