Kitty Chronicles

My poor cats have been sick. I’ve been kind of pissed off at the shelter where I got them from – they gave me such a hard time adopting them (because I had “let” something happen to Nala), and then when I went to pick them up I found out they had forgotten to give them their last shots. Niiiice! Yeah, you take really good care of your pets – and you’re afraid I won’t make a good kitty mommy. *sigh* They initially gave me some medicine to take home with me – “for diarrhea (sp?), all the kittens get it!” – and I later discovered it was for worms. Thanks for telling me!

Well, I saw some of the worms coming out of Twinkie’s butt – NOT a pretty sight! I freaked out; none of my cats have ever had worms, and I didn’t know a thing about it. Apparently, it’s not extremely serious, and treatment is relatively simple. But STILL! Had to bring him to the vet, when I was hoping to wait a little while and take them when they were older since they had supposedly been checked out by the shelter. Not only did they find roundworms, but some kind of virus/infection called coccidiosis – since both are highly contagious among cats, it’s most likely that Rusty will catch ’em. So there was some medicine to buy. Oh – and Twinkie already has gingivitis – it may just be his teeth coming in, but we have to keep an eye on that.

Rusty got a bad eye infection. I got really worried, and even though he hadn’t been seen by the vet, they let me take home some herbal eye drops for him. Ugh – trying to give him and Twinkie (just in case) eye drops is such fun! Well, the not-inexpensive eye drops didn’t do a lick of good, and BOTH eyes got infected. I brought him to the vet yesterday afternoon – taking time out of my normal work day to make the apointment. They did find the coccidiosis, and even though they didn’t see roundworms I’m treating them just in case. So, guess what? More medicine! His eye infection turned out to be conjunctivitis – rather serious, if left untreated. So – stronger eye goop! That’s right, “goop.” These aren’t eye drops of the consistency of Visine or what have you – it’s more like a gel, and I have to put it ON HIS EYEBALL! BOTH of them. Yeah – right! Rusty put up a fight with the vet and her assistant – and, as you can imagine, hasn’t taken a fancy to my administration. Since his immune system seems to be taking a beating, the vet also recommended some immune boosters – luckily, all I have to do is grind up the pills and mix ’em in in with the food.

The vet asked if Twinkie was showing signs of eye infection, and I said he hadn’t so far. (pause) Well, when I got home from the vet – carting a struggling, howling Rusty in a cat carrier, rushing because I was late for work and they had me sitting in the exam room for an hour – I discovered that Twinkie’s right eye was all swollen. I started crying – I’ve had enough! Well, at least now they can share the eye goop – and Philip is helping me dole it out.

Ready for another surprise? Rusty is a girl! I was curious about his… er, her… coloring, since it would have been very rare in a male cat. Apparently, it can be hard to determine the sex of a kitten, but two of the vets concurred that he, she, is indeed female. Along with this new tidbit of information comes the fact that I have to keep a close eye on these two to make sure there’s no funny business going on. And… Rust-ina needs a new name!

When we had Nala, I got used to saying “she.” When we got what I thought were two males, I couldn’t get out of the habit of saying “she,” and Philip would correct, “HE!” Now, I have to get back to the feminine! When I was first looking for suitable cat names, I came upon a whole bunch of pretty, feminine names – and now I can’t remember what they all were! Some ideas were: Tangerine (Tangie), Marmalade(y), Poppy, Ruby, Sienna, Autumn (one of my favourites – but not really conducive to calling a cat), Tiger Lily, Amber/Ember, and Ginger. I dunno, none of them really seemed to fit – and I don’t want to call her Rusty or Rustina! Last night, I was looking at her beautiful orange/red orange coat with the black markings, and I thought again how the colors remind me of rocks – like, Grand Canyon colors, painted hills, some sort of marble – and I thought of the word Petra, which means “rock” (and which also happens to be the name of an 80s Christian rock band). So – whaddya’ think of that name?

Twinkie & Rusty… er, Petra… playing.