I Wish Cats Could Talk

I wish cats could talk. Saturday night, I went to bed with my cat Patches appearing to be acting normally. When I woke up on Sunday and came downstairs, I found him hiding behind the chair in my mom’s bedroom. Immediately I knew something was wrong. Throughout the day, my concern only grew when he refused any food or water. I put a folded rug in the corner where he was so he wouldn’t have to lie on the floor and slid dry food, wet food, and plain water under the chair, so he only had to come out to use the litter box. I did this on purpose so I could monitor his urinary output. He did come out, for that purpose, several times during the day and evening. The most disturbing symptom he displayed was a kind of a moan he made when he exhaled. I watched him as closely as I could, while leaving him alone as well, and felt like he wasn’t in respiratory distress and decided to wait until this morning to take him to the vet. It was a long day and night yesterday because, at almost 17 years of age, I realize he doesn’t have much time left. But the idea of losing him so soon after my mom died was unbearable to my heart.

When I woke up this morning, my anxiety level immediately pegged out at a 10, and I went downstairs not quite knowing what I’d find. Luckily, Patches was still breathing, although the sound was now gone, and his eyes appeared brighter. Calling the vet, I wasn’t sure when I’d be going in. Luckily they were able to squeeze me in at 10 AM. So, off we went. Long story short, and this is why I wish cats could talk, my poor cat has a severe urinary tract infection, hyperthyroidism, and he is borderline diabetic. I had no idea he was so sick, and I feel horrible that, if there were signs, I had missed them. He has to take medication several times a day, and the vet seemed to be hopeful we could turn it all around. When we got home, I looked up hyperthyroidism in cats and was blown away. Weight loss, check. Increased appetite, check. Excessive thirst, looking back on it, check. Unkempt appearance, check. Vomiting, check. Many of his symptoms I just chalked up to him being an older cat and didn’t really think about it. So, that’s what my last couple of days have been about. Cats are stoic by nature and hide any symptoms when they don’t feel good. Patches has proved to be a master of this ability because, like I said, I had no clue he was so ill and I can only hope that the medications he has been put on will provide the relief and recovery he needs. He’s the elder statesman of my little household, and I’m just not ready for his presence to be gone from my life.

The Color of Character Part 6

In honor of the Women’s Marches taking place around the United States, today’s description is of a world famous animal activist and primatologist.

Sitting down her head at an angle she smiles, wrinkles framing her eyes. Her greying hair tied up its usual ponytail so it’s out of her face. A chimpanzee rests its head on her shoulders. Looking at peace but with a vast wisdom in his eyes, he gazes out into the vast unknown. She is as comfortable with him as he is with her. A relationship between species created by her special magic.

I feel a great kinship to this woman because I have an affinity for animals too. As a child of about five years of age, in the winter, I would put birdseed in my mittened hand, hold it out and wait for birds to come eat from it. Usually kids my age wouldn’t have the patience for it but I would be enthralled at the sight of the first bird landing on nearby branches. I would stand as still as I could watching it as it looked me up and down trying to decide if my hand was a safe enough perch for it to land and eat. Feeling its little claws wrap around my finger as he bent down to grab a seed and then then the light push as he took off again made my heart soar as high as they did as they carried the seeds away.