Exploring new roads by choice

I have always published this blog on my personal Facebook page. Lately this blog is about all I publish on my personal Facebook page. That has something to do with the fact that I only use my personal Facebook page for family notes, and to play a game or two.

So, I just created a completely new Facebook page devoted just to this blog and my posts here will now appear on that page rather than the personal one. I was finding myself feeling like I was forcing my opinions on people, although some of the posts I chose not to share publicly. But now, folks who read me on Facebook have the choice (and that’s important) to still get this blog if they want to by going to my new page, giving it a like, and following me there.

I would also love to publicize this move so please feel free to share the new page with anyone you feel might be interested and who uses Facebook regularly. I would appreciate it.

Find my writing, commentary, Media Monday and Feminist Friday, plus more here,¬†and don’t forget to like and follow

 

Media Monday: Assorted

This is not Media Monday as it was originally aired earlier this morning. Thanks to fellow blogger The Dancing Professor, who let me know that my links were all wonky and not linking as they should.

Quite honestly though, it has been a hell of a morning after posting that piece early on, and so I just took the links away, am skipping MM altogether, and will give a semi-update on the post from yesterday regarding the abandoned cat.

He was waiting on our deck this morning. and as has been the case almost every time I attempt to corner him, our local animal control is closed today. My brilliant alternative plan was to take him out to the county shelter.

Skipping the details of capture, because I feel really bad about it, he rode rather quietly out to the shelter, where I was told, graciously and apologetically, that they could not take him as I live within my own cities limits. I also live in the county that the shelter serves, but they are obliged to follow my city regulations and decline his presence at their shelter.

Can you imagine what I’m saying in my head as I hear that?

I honestly did not see, anywhere on the county website, or the city site for that matter, that this ridiculous rule was in place, and I’ve been on those sites a lot lately.

I thought if I stressed to the tech that my shelter was closed today, she might relent, but no. She did however get the people from my city shelter on the phone, allowed me to explain what I had attempted to do, and give my address so that the control officer could come to my home and get the cat.

So I drove 20 minutes back home and now sit here and wait, with the cat still in a box, for animal control to show up. I don’t know when that will be, and that is making this whole thing even worse.

I have to be honest here. When this whole thing started-when we first noticed the cat being skinny, and wandering, and sad-I secretly hoped that it would quietly disappear-meaning…well, you know. Of course I hoped that because it would have been the easy way out for me. I could have just pretended that it went off to some happy home and was living well as a cat should while ignoring all thoughts of reality.

I wish I could just be a cold-hearted bitch who sees a stray cat and scares it off with a broom. I want this all to be over, yet I have to sit and wait and try not to think and I hate it all.

UPDATE: 12:30

Mr. Tabby is now in the hands of animal control and I am going to completely delude myself that he is going to live well and prosper for years to come.

Strays

I’ve been avoiding this post. It’s altogether sad. especially if you happen to be an animal lover. I’m also avoiding pictures of the real cat.

The outdoor cats in our neighborhood use the fences that surround the backyards of most of the houses as a transit system rather than walking around a long set of sidewalks as they meander from their own homes to wherever it is cats go.

This post is about one particular cat, an orange and white tabby(?) that looks something like this, with the addition of a few orange patches on its back.

I’ve seen this cat around our neighborhood for 2 years at least. It would always appear from a side-street, cross the road at our house, and then hop on fence transit to continue its journey. For the longest time, the cat seemed healthy and well fed. Even from a distance you could see that it was eating on a regular basis, but it wasn’t overweight.

Last spring, catching glimpses of this cat, it was becoming painfully clear that the cat was losing weight. It’s abdomen and sides were sunken and the ribs were pretty apparent. I admit that, in our need to feel we were doing something to prevent this creature from starving to death, we (the daughter or myself) ¬†would put out some food when we saw it wandering around our backyard. As the days came and went we came to the conclusion that the cat had probably been abandoned. You tend to speculate on the type of owner who might do such a thing. It was clear that at some point the cat had been fed and cared for, so what makes someone decide that it just isn’t worth caring for their pet anymore.

Did the cat get dumped in our neighborhood? Did the owners move away and decide not to take the cat with them? Perhaps it wandered away on its own and somehow just ended up on our streets. We won’t ever have the answers as to how or why it came to be wandering here.

The cat, a male we discovered, would come and go, and seemed friendly enough. It was scruffy, and as spring progressed into summer, it ended up with a very apparent case of fleas. One day the cat came to visit and there were semi-healed scratch marks on its head, it’s ear was ragged and torn, and there was a gash or wound on its neck, under his chin.

This stalwart guy never seemed to complain, or be in pain and slowly but surely, when we would see him, we noticed that the wounds were healing.

I rationally knew that we weren’t doing it any favors by feeding him, and I also knew what trying to prevent his starvation would encourage, both in the cat and in my animal loving daughter. I did make it clear from the start that he wasn’t going to become another in the line of our adopted cats though.

So summer has turned to fall, the cat has continued to disappear and then show up after a few days, looking for food but even more, looking for attention and love. My daughter discovered that the fellows teeth are all but decayed away, at least the front teeth anyway, so he’s been on his own for a long time, probably longer than I even realized. When that realization sunk in I knew that the kindest thing would be to take him to the local shelter. Our local animal shelter is a no kill shelter-unless the animal is too sick to be cleared for adoption.

Almost 2 months ago I tried to round him up, get him into a box and take him in. He’s a fighter for sure, and I didn’t have any luck getting him into the box, much less closing it and containing him, but the dilemma has to be faced, knowing that the weather will be changing, that he’s not healthy and that he won’t survive the winter outside.

I made the decision to keep trying and just after that, about 2 weeks ago, he showed up again, this time with an open, festering sore under his chin again. It was draining green pus, and smelled god-awful. I know what a dental abscess looks like and this was a raging one. It has continued to fester and drain, yet this guy still seems unfazed by his condition. I have a box ready, just waiting for the time that I can get him contained and to the shelter. Karma seems to be working against me though. He seems to know that he should show up on the days that the animal shelter is closed. He also manages to come early enough in the morning or late enough in the afternoon, or on the days when I am at Miss G’s house, that I still can’t attempt another try to capture him.

I know that this needs to be done. I know that his health will fail soon and I don’t want him to suffer or simply be so weak that he starves and freezes to death. I know the shelter will determine that he isn’t a good candidate for adoption and while I hate the idea, euthanasia will be the kindest road for this guy.

Every time I see him I have such mixed emotions, from being angry at suspected abusive owners who left or got tired of him, to trying to be rational and remind myself that perhaps he ran from a good home of his own accord. Whatever the reason is that he has found his way here, the kindest thing I can do for him now is to see him, as gently as possible, into the care of someone who can allow him to leave this world without pain and fear.

It breaks my heart.