Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Vacation Day 2: Vet Day

It's only 10 a.m. but I can categorically state that this day is terrible. It was vet day. Grey Cat set an entirely new standard for bad cat behavior. I would rather go to the gynecologist than take these two yahoos to the vet. The entire rest of this post is whining, so feel free to skip it if you don't like whiney blogs.

They're easy to get in their carriers - Grey Cat likes car trips and Orange Cat doesn't resist. But once we're in the car (after carrying 40 lbs. of FAT CAT plus carrier weight by myself), Orange Cat cries rhythmically, incessantly, and ANNOYINGLY all the way to the vet. As soon as we arrive, Grey Cat starts freaking out in his carrier. He was actually hissing BEFORE we got to the exam room.

About the time we arrive in the exam room, my eyes start itching and my nose starts running from pet allergies, which are fine when it's just a couple pets in a house, but when it's all the concentrated petness at the vet (or a shelter), I'm miserable. Both refuse to exit their carriers and have to be dragged out. Orange Cat is fairly sweet to the tech, even gives a little purr, but Grey Cat takes a swipe at her, hisses, tries to bite me when I pick him up, and refuses to be weighed. We attempt to bribe him with treats. He is not that dumb.

The vet comes in. Orange Cat is fairly well-behaved, lets them draw blood, isn't bothered by the shots (he gets two a day for the diabetes, after all). He isn't happy with the exam and cries about it, trying to cover his anus with his tail stump like a little lid on a box, but he loses the battle. He is relieved to be free.

Then it is Grey Cat's turn. We have to chase him around the office before we can pick him up. He holds still on the exam table with me holding him (he holds the most still for me), crying and wriggling, for exactly 10 seconds. Then he is too strong, and I can't hold him still without being afraid I will break his neck, and he escapes. We graduate to a towel-as-straightjacket and the huge bicep-length gloves they use to handle raptors for the vet. With the three of us holding him down while he screams, the vet manages to sort-of examine him. He escapes again. The vet summons a second tech and a second set of gloves, as Grey Cat has now tried to bite everyone in the room, hissed, and taken several swipes at people. He hides behind Orange Cat, who is happy to serve as a bodyshield. Orange Cat is locked up. Grey Cat is trapped once more. With the four of us holding him down and Grey Cat screaming so loudly that he freaked out every other animal in the entire hospital, we manage to get one shot in him. We have to recapture him for the other shot. More screaming ensues.

Back in his carrier, Grey Cat continues to hiss at everyone who approaches the carrier. I pay the $180 (!!!) for these two extremely badly behaved cats, which I'm sort-of irked about becuase why should I have to pay to be tortured? But then $180 probably isn't nearly enough to compensate the vet for having to deal with Grey Cat. I apologize profusely and repeatedly. Fortunately, Grey Cat is not banned and the vet is quite gracious about it. (I have noticed, however, they trade off who has to deal with him every year. They're all happy to treat Orange Cat but Grey Cat gets traded.)

The only comfort I have is that everyone is so traumatized that when we get in the car, NOBODY cries on the way home, not even Orange Cat. "I hate you both," I inform them when we arrive home.

"Whatever, liar," they sniff.

I am now sweaty from the stress and exertion, have a tension headache, am suffering a nasty allergy attack; I'm exhausted, and my arms are sore from lifting the world's fattest felines repeatedly in their carriers (although at least that's helpful - I will be so ripped!). I think I need to go nap for several hours before I can manage to run the 8 million errands that constitute Vacation Day 2.

Worst. Vacation. Ever.


Labrys6 said...

I know this is probably a silly suggestion, but I don't suppose any vets in your area make housecalls? It really is less stressful for cats who freak. Part of the issue IS all the intense "petness" at clinics.

You need more than a nap. You need a good beer, or a strong drink, or half a bottle of wine. Maybe pre-vet visit food administered drugs to gray cat wouldn't be a bad idea either!!

pollypeoria said...


Ever heard of Vegas? Mexico? Caribean? Hell, Miami in July with an incoming grade six hurricane sounds like more fun than the vacation you are experiencing.

Learn from my repeated mistakes. At home vacations do not work. Won't happen. An overachiever like yourself cannot relax with dust gathering on the coffee table, clients calling on the phone, weeds growing in the garden, or kitties whining for attention. If you really want to relax, read brain candy books and watch silly daytime television, you MUST LEAVE HOME!!!

Last winter I checked into the Holiday Inn for a long weekend of relaxation. Too exhausted to plan a real vacation or travel somewhere exotic, but I was also too stressed to stay home. It worked wonders. There was a Walmart down the street where I could buy cheap novels and the room had cable. I came back to Peoria a new woman. Next time though, I would pick a hotel that had room service and wi-fi.

If you can't get away, you might as well be billing someone for your misery. Yo! Mr. McGee Litigator Guy! Time to wisk the missus away for a bit.