Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Who's Lucky Now?
Lucky, the stray cat I wrote about here, is now a Rosen. That means he'll have to get used to watching Top Chef, Project Runway, and whatever's on Masterpiece Theater. He'll put up with gushing attention when our grown daughters come by for dinner on Sunday evenings and will earn acceptance from the family's two existing cats, who've been acting standoffish toward him. Luckily, Lucky's easy-going and resilient.
Nevertheless, indoor living will cramp the style of a cat who's roamed the neighborhood for more than a year—always in the company of a kittenish sidekick with amber eyes. Unfortunately, my neighborhood turned dangerous when a bully cat marked it as his territory.
When my neighbor and I noticed Lucky was limping. I took him inside, dabbed his leg wound with hydrogen peroxide, and decided to keep him indoors until he recovered. He didn't, so I took him to the vet.
Lucky's leg wound was worse than I'd thought, and I'd overlooked a nasty bite near his tail. The vet kept him overnight. By the time Hubs and I picked up the cat the next morning, we'd decided to keep him. Who could look at those wounds and send him back outside where another attack was bound to happen?
On the other hand, our adoption of Lucky would leave his sidekick outdoors without his best buddy/posse of one. That knowledge made me sick. My next-door neighbors, who already have two dogs and two cats, decided they'd take in the sidekick. How awesome is that.
The vet estimates Lucky is three years old. He'd been neutered but wasn't ear-tipped. (When a feral cat is neutered, it's common to cut a quarter-inch off the tip of the left ear as a signal the cat's had the procedure. Don't worry; the tip heals quickly.) "He was somebody's pet," the vet said.
Since Lucky and his sidekick have cadged food from me, my next-door neighbors and at least one other family EVERY DAY for almost a year, it's clear he hasn't been anyone's pet for long time.
"Dumped," my next-door neighbor said when I relayed the vet's findings.
Yet it's clear Lucky and his sidekick had been given a good start in life. They are not afraid of people, so someone was kind to them. Did that person get sick? Have a stroke? Was a loving child forced to release her pets because the family was moving? I haven't a clue.
At the moment, Lucky is afraid of me—the meanie who dabbed his leg with hydrogen peroxide, then took him to the vet. When we brought his bandaged self home, Lucky took refuge under the bed in the guest room. I voted against feeding him, thinking he was still full of anesthesia and antibiotics. Hubs disagreed and took a dish of food into the guest room. Lucky crept from under the bed to empty the dish and lick my husband's hand. An hour later, Lucky hobbled into the family room to lean against Hubs' chair.
Yesterday morning, I took Lucky back to the vet to have the bandage removed. The wounds are healing nicely. As I write this on Tuesday at almost seven in the evening, Lucky's under the guest bed. He won't be for long.
Hubs is due home any minute. When he makes his appearance, Lucky will, too.