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July 21, 2006
Cats Don't Care

It's been about five months since Mycah was diagnosed with diabetes. Tuesday she had an all-day stay with the vet, where she had the second of her periodic checkups, during which she was sampled hourly to chart her blood glucose levels. They take readings off the edge of the ear, as I understand it.

A urine sample was also needed. Keep the cat in a pen, give her water, and wait for the magic to happen. Not a problem, you might think.

Think again.

Of the cats I've known, Mycah is absolutely the pickiest about her litterbox. She likes the fine-grained litter, the clumping scoopable kind. And you'd best scoop twice daily, or be prepared to get a surprise on the carpet.

She's a cat. She's picky. So sue her.

For the vet to get a wee sample, clumping scoopable litter is counterproductive, so they use a non-absorbent pellet-like material. The piddle drains through to the bottom and can be collected and bottled later.

Mycah, however, was utterly uncooperative, and rather than use the "substandard" litter, refused to go at all.

When I picked her up that afternoon, the vet mentioned that Mycah had refused to participate in Operation Golden Flow; we agreed that I would bring her back next week to attempt to collect a sample. I parked her (in her carrier) in the passenger seat of my truck, and off we went.

She meowed the same as she always does when she's in the carrier, but I didn't notice her dancing and crossing her legs. As I pulled out of the parking lot and into traffic, the meowing stopped. I looked, and she was standing stiff and motionless in the carrier.

Oh, no.

In fact, oh yes, she was pizzling in her carrier. As luck would have it, the carrier is plastic, and it was tilted so that the door opening was uphill... the effluvium gathered at the back end of the carrier, while Mycah attempted to scrunch up against the door, as far away from the pool as possible, meowing what was undoubtedly the feline equivalent of "Get me out of here!"

I pulled off the road and let her out, then called the vet — could they use whiz collected in a non-standard container? They said "yes," so I headed back to the vet's office, being careful not to upset the carrier. Mycah meatloafed herself on the center console as though nothing had happened, with no hint that she'd done anything improper.

Obviously, someone else had flooded her carrier. Her? Oh, no, not her.

I delivered the toxic waste to the vet. We had a good chuckle, and the staff were kind enough to wash out the carrier; cat pee can, after all, be rather aromatic. I briefly toyed with the idea of leaving it soiled and stuffing Mycah back in, but no, my conscience wouldn't let me.

Mycah, of course, was utterly indifferent. As soon as we got home and she got fed (she'd had to fast before the blood test), she immediately stretched out for a nap as though the day's misadventure hadn't happened.

[Click for larger.]

I wish I could relax so thoroughly, with such a clear conscience. But I'm not a cat.

By the way, the test results came back Thursday — Mycah is doing very well, no insulin is required, and she doesn't need retesting for another six months.

Let's not forget the Friday Ark at The Modulator, shall we?

And we'd be utterly remiss to neglect the Carnival of the Cats, this Sunday at Creatures of the Earth.

Update, 25Jul06: It's Tummy Tuesday!

Posted by Russ at 11:18 AM, July 21, 2006 in Animals

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Thats why you should own a dog.

I'd suggest the burlap sack treatment, but having seen Mycah, I know there is no such sack large enough.

Heck - if you got a dog, perhaps it would chase Fatty-Catty and she would get what she really needs: exercise.

Posted by: Brad at July 21, 2006 12:02 PM

Cute - cats are an entity to themselves. I just wonder how YOU would have collected samples at home?
Of course "Moochie" never pees anywhere she shouldn't. Especially after drinking half the pool while swimming! What characters we Emersons have as pets.
I have to tell you "Bounce" is pretty weird too - she has to have her meal stirred several times during her feeding time.
I wonder what "Bubba" & "Lou" are up to.

Posted by: mom at July 21, 2006 12:25 PM

Brad: you suck.

Posted by: Russ at July 21, 2006 04:15 PM

My daughter just walked by and thought she was looking at a picture of our cat, Harley.

Posted by: tbirdonawire at July 21, 2006 09:02 PM

I saw Harley's 6-month-old kitten pic earlier today, and thought "that looks like Mycah." :-)

Adorable, aren't they?

Posted by: Russ at July 21, 2006 09:53 PM