disturbed sleep

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Our baby is not with us for the first night since He found her on the steel wheels 5&1/2 months ago. You have seen Hobo's pictures. She was barely one pound and very helpless. I became her mother. I did all but groom her with my tongue. (Do you know I have met human/kitten/mothers who have licked their infant kittens? I think I believe this would work, but I did not do it myself.) Hobo had her ovaries removed today at 6&1/2 months old. If you are looking for controversy, she is also getting "declawed". That rancles many pet owners. I am sorry about that. I have seen the surgery and I can see why.

We have taken in 9 adult strays (2 from clinics) in the last 11 years. Do the math. Our house has become a dedicated "cat hobo hangout" in the Village. Being a railroad wife, I have learned that this means my home is a place of respite for wanderers, feline wanderers, that is. We have taken them in after they won our hearts over, or more likely, they decided we were worthy to adopt them. We went through the "basement quarentine" period with each and every one, whereby we loved them, fed them, and all, while separating them from our house/bedcats for a few weeks. When we felt it was reasonable, we brought them to our vet for all sorts of medical care. You know, in our neck of the woods, this sometimes cost over 300 dollars per animal. But we needed to know what communicable diseases they were carrying (like feline leukemia, eg.) This time period also allowed us to see which cats would get along with the others in our very small, humanized household. We do not have a home where the cas rule the roost. They live within our limits, all use a litterbox, eat in one location, and we all respect & love each other.

Every adult cat that we have kept indoors or adopted from the shelter was already declawed. I never thought I would inflict that horror upon a grown animal. But this very small new creature, within less than 4 months, has made terrible progress in destroying the things we have waited years to replace, at great expense for us, in our house, to make it comfortable in our eyes. Our "tween" is now past the times of spilling milk and cookies and so many other sorts of things on the furniture & rugs.

Imagine this: My wedding present in 1992 from my husband was a Shaker reproduction maple pencil-post bed. From Southern Vermont, where I have long-lasting childhood memories. Precious little Hobo scampers up it, and when scolded, slowly slides down the post, as tiny curlicues of maple cascade to the carpet from her claws! What a delightful scene. HE says the destroyed posts will make a nice memory someday. I wonder who will care, since the furniture has now lost all value and will at best make decent firewood.

Hobo will live a wonderful life with us for maybe 24 years, like Inky of my childood, once I bring her home tommorow. This is assuming I sleep tonight, otherwise tomorrow is just a lengthened part of today, for me and for Hobo. Ugh.



Kristy said:

Hey, I head ya on the declaw issue. I believe that kitty would far rather live in your house with you and without her claws than in the rail yard with them. You do what you have to do--and she's still so far ahead of where she was she's still one lucky kitty.

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This page contains a single entry by Carol published on February 20, 2006 10:32 PM.

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