Monday, June 29, 2009

The Corn Cat - Part 3

Twenty minutes later we were back in the exam room at the vet’s office. The vet commented on how much better the cat was looking. I just starred at her in disbelief. I thought, “Why is she not freaking out? How could this situation possibly be treated so nonchalantly? The cat’s butt is hanging out for crying out loud!” Then she slipped on a glove, added a little lubricant and popped it right back in as casually as if she were merely wiping the bangs from her face.

She had obviously done this before.

The vet said, “It is called a prolapsed rectum. It was most likely brought on by the cat’s diet going from starving to well-fed. It may or may not go away on its own. If not she will need surgery…”

“Wait just a minute. What did you just say? It may not go away? But you just made it go away. You mean it’s going to happen again?”

“Oh yes, Most likely it will continue to happen every time she uses the litter box. You’ll need to push it back in.”

“SAY WHAT? You want ME to do WHAT?”

“It would be best to deal with it just as quickly as it happens. Otherwise it may not go back in. We’ll put her on a diet of tuna and cottage cheese to hopefully loosen things up.”

So now not only would I be preparing special meals, applying salve to its eyes and drops in its ears I would also be pushing its butt back in every few hours. All this for a cat I didn’t even want in the first place. My mind quickly returned to the cornfield. Maybe I could just put it back? But there they were; the vet, the technician and Aaron staring at me, again.


I left there with a box of latex gloves and for the next several weeks everywhere I went so did the cat. We were inseparable. I couldn’t leave it home alone for long periods of time because if its butt fell out, it needed to be dealt with as soon as possible. It served as quite the lively topic of conversation at the family reunion when one of my cousin’s kids spotted the cat hanging on the porch screen, mooning everyone so to speak.

She used her charms to schmooze her way into the fold of family life. Aaron, of course, loved her. There is something very tactile and soothing about a cat. She would let him carry her around like a rag doll and pet her as long as he wanted. She loved it when he would cover her up with a throw; you could hear her purr clear across the room. He thought that was the funniest thing ever because he also loved to hide under the covers. The weight of the layers has a calming affect for those with autism. It is said that all cats have Asperger Syndrome. Cats certainly don’t feel the need to conform to social conventions. That very well may be why they hit if off so well. They were two peas in a pod.

Even Lucy grew fond of her. I thought it was odd that these two natural enemies would bond so easily until one evening when I caught the cat flinging leftover chicken wings off the kitchen counter to the dog below. Everyone knows the way to a Beagle’s heart is through its stomach. This made them best friends instantly.

After you shove someone’s butt back in for them a few times you start to develop a relationship. It didn’t take the cat long to figure out I was the bringer of food and the fixer of butts. The cat was not fond of all the procedures by any stroke of the imagination, but it was almost as if she knew I was trying to help her.

After a few weeks of fine dining on gourmet tuna salad with a side of cottage cheese while using up an entire box of latex gloves, she was finally healthy. It was time to take her to the shelter. I didn’t want a cat. I didn’t ask for a cat. I sure as heck didn’t want a sick cat. But whether I wanted to or not, somehow during the course of her treatment, I had become her Mama. She needed me.

As I watched Aaron lie next to her one evening on the living room floor wrapped up tightly in a blanket like a burrito with only his eyes showing, I realized she wasn’t going anywhere. The disheveled, the seemingly-unlovable and the miserable deserve some tolerance and acceptance. Their quirks and idiosyncrasies are part of what makes them worth saving. With a little love, encouragement and intervention early on, the rest of us can sit back and enjoy the unique individuals they become. We don’t go looking for them, but we sure are blessed to have them in our lives.

It’s time to give her a name. I think we’ll call her Ethel—Lucy’s partner in crime.

16 comments:

sewprimitive karen said...

Bless you for saving that kitty.

Karen Anne said...

What a beautiful cat.

I remember reading in one of the wonderful James Herriot books about his life as a vet in the Yorkshire Dales about animals getting prolapsed rectums. I am sure I would have still been running around in a panic, though.

Nara said...

Laughing, this is hilarious. I don't know if I could have donned the gloves.

Milah said...

I've seen that on cattle, pigs and sheep but never a cat. Jack has always taken care of those things and I try not to watch. I don't think I could have done that, only because I have a weak stomach. She sure is a beautiful cat, I'm glad to see a happy ending.

Lori said...

Scruffy little kitty to beautiful cat! Kinda reminds me of the Ugly Duckling:)
We saved a stray too, thankfully not in the horrible condition as the corn cat.I loved that cat until the day he died.

bennie and patsy said...

Christine you are a good and loving person. Here Kitty Kitty.LOL
Patsy

Julie-Ann said...

What a wonderful story and outcome. I'm sure Ethel loves you. Animals are amazing. I sure love my 2 rescue dogs. However, their butts have always remain in place, even when being dragged across my beautiful area rug!

Angela said...

She is beautiful. We just did a rescue kitty. Timmy is up on my blog right now. His tongue is slowly becoming pink. The fleas, the horrible fleas.

The Brother said...

Ethel's cousins are coming to visit this week for a few days. She just LOVES it when they show up. :-)

Karen Anne said...

What species are Ethel's cousins?

Christine said...

Cats. Unfortunately, Ethel thinks she's a dog. (this story could have gone on forever)

Marilyn R said...

Thanks for the Corn Cat story. It is no wonder that the cat took over everyone's heart so that it could stay in a loving home!

Sandy said...

She's just beautiful. I am so glad she found you and that everything turned out OK. I had happy tears in my eyes at the end of the story.

The Brother said...

Not sure what flavor my cats are. The gray one is a chunk that hit 16 pounds for a bit before I slimmed him down. My vet thinks the long haired one has Maine Coon in him. He looks just as big as the other but you get him wet and there isn't anything to him.

Stephanie said...

She is absolutely gorgeous, and your stories about her made me tear up. What a lucky girl to have found such a kind soul who would care for her so well. :)

freaked out 'n small said...

I haven't laughed so hard at a blog...well, ever! I was having a bad day and this laugh out loud post just turned it around.