So yesterday morning, Andy and I took the cat to the vet to start the Step One process of getting the cat to a foreign land. I have mentioned before that Chloe is a difficult cat and has been banned from two other veterinarians in the area for being a complete and utter uncontrollable terror (a term I believe the English describe as “being plagued by anti-social behavior” – which tickles me to no end). When I called to make the initial appointment I asked the receptionist if it would be possible to pick up some sedatives to give to Chloe prior to the appointment to make everyone’s life a bit easier and claws of death free. The reception responded, “I’m sorry we can’t do that. The doctor will determine if the cat needs sedation.” It’s your arms and hands open for mutilation, not mine, chica.
The night before the appointment we went on a desperate search for the cat carrier. Due to Chloe being banned from two pet hospitals, I haven’t used the cat carrier since we moved from a shitty one bedroom apartment down the street to the not so shitty triplex we’re in now – which was over 4 years ago. I have no idea where that cat carrier went but I can determine that it is no longer in my possession. I blame the thieving neighbors that used to live next to us who didn’t have cats but they we horrible and obnoxious and I’m sure they used the cat carrier to transport illegal cocaine bananas! A-hem. Anyhow, because we couldn’t find the carrier, we ended up getting a new one and while at the pet store I insisted that we get this fleece bed type liner for the carrier. Both the carrier and fleece liner were for designed for small yippy type dogs and I think we both had fears that Chloe developed the sudden talent of Reading English and would reject the carrier with that air of snobbery only cats can possess.
Thankfully Chloe’s only talent is still knowing when a can of tuna is opened from 3 miles away and she spent the majority of Tuesday night tucked quite comfortably in the new carrier (door open of course). I think she felt it was her own personal grotto sans waterfall – she really took to lounging like Hugh Hefner.
The next morning getting her into the carrier was a piece of piss. I kind of nudged her in and she was quite happy to go in - though she did have a look of shock when the door closed behind her. “Wha? What’s this then? IS THIS A CAGE? OH NO YOU DI’INT!” (Chloe’s a bit gangster by the way)
When we met the vet for the first time I felt really bad for her. She was a middle aged skinny blonde woman with a pretty face and kind eyes. I felt for sure that the experience she will soon have with our cat would taint her forever and she’d quit that very day and start selling beanie babies on eBay for money instead. She had with her a young Hispanic man as her assistant. The assistant asked if it was OK to weigh Chloe. Andy responded, “It’s your skin mate, go for it.” The assistant choose instead to step back and wait for the vet to take charge.
The first thing the vet had to do was to get Chloe out of the carrier. I should mention that Chloe was already hissing up a storm by this point. Neither the vet nor the assistant wanted to put their hands in the carrier to get Chloe out so they ended up kind of tipping the carrier over vertically in an attempt to sliiiide her out. But Chloe wasn’t having a bit of it. She was holding on to that fleece liner with every bit of razor sharp nail she had. At one point the carrier is at a 90 degree vertical angle, the fleece liner is halfway out and all Andy and I see is one very pissed off, claws out, fuzzy grey hind leg coming out of the carrier trying desperately to defy the laws of gravity and get back in the damn box. Because Andy and I are mean, we laughed our asses off at the hind leg. I’m only sad I didn’t think enough to take a picture of it. Seriously, you would all be laughing too.
Once Chloe was out of the box, the vet had the assistant hold Chloe down with a towel. Again, I wish I had taken pictures – or a video! Seriously, it was comedy genius. Chloe doesn’t like strangers and she certainly doesn’t like being held down by a towel. She began screeching. Anyone who has ever owned a cat knows the screech – it’s the same screech that is heard when you accidently step on the cat’s tail because the damn cat has decided to stand right behind you when you are in the kitchen getting a glass from the cupboard and the cat somehow thinks you have eyes in the back of your ankles. Except this wasn't a single screech of tail stepping, this was a constant screech followed by the wild eyes and squirming like a 2 year old who no longer wants to be held. The vet’s assistant had a look of terror in his eyes. I shouldn’t have worried about the vet; it was the assistant that’s selling the beanie babies today. The vet in all her wisdom, said to the assistant, “Get the box.”
The box in reference was a small glass box, just slightly bigger than a shoe box. It had a glass lid with two 4-inch “air holes” on the top. They slide the cat into the box (a feat itself) and clamp the lid onto the box. At this point the vet turns to me and says, “She’s not getting banned from my hospital.” I decided at that sentence that I would never want another vet but this one.
So yeah, the vet gassed our cat. Er, I mean, sedated her. Chloe got her exam in, shots done, and an able to be read in foreign countries microchip inserted. When the vet brought Chloe back, Chloe’s tongue was hanging out. Andy and I laughed again. The vet said, “Yeah, she went down pretty quickly. I gave her a mushy kiss on the lips!” We laughed more and I considered inviting this lady over for dinner she was so cool.
But then comes the bad news. And it makes me feel worse because it’s entirely my fault. In order for Chloe to go overseas she needs to have had a previous rabies shot to the one she received yesterday. I never kept up with her shots because she was so difficult to manage and after being banned from two different animal hospitals I had doubted that they would be able to give her the shots in the first place. That said, the times when she did get shots (early in her life) one of the vets along the way should have given her a shot for rabies – which they never did. What all this means is that in order for Chloe to come with us, she needs another rabies shot IN A YEAR, followed by a blood test a month after that, followed by a 6 month waiting period. Which means, my fair readers, Chloe can’t leave the United States until April 2012. APRIL 2012! We are still leaving in 6-7 months time. We are at a loss of what to do.
As of today, Chloe isn’t talking to us. She sulked all of last night and I think today she’s a bit ill from the rabies shot and\or gassing. I feel horrible enough to give her tuna for the next week but she hasn’t bothered to come out of Andy’s closet since last night. It’s like she knows what we’re up against.