Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The 9 Lives of Leonard

I brought Leonard home from my parents house... I put him in the small pocket of my purse. The entire bus ride home, he meowed unless I held him. Once here, we noticed that he ate and ate and got fatter...but never seemed to poop. He meowed and complained and walked funny, but still no poop. It finally occurred to me that he might be too little to know what to do. I put him in the litter box and he scratched around in it. Still no poop. I finally got a rag and wet it with warm water. I "groomed" him with it on his head...then moved to his butt. As soon as the warm rag touched his butt, an explosion of poop squirted out of him. I had to groom his ass this way every day for a week before he finally pooped unprompted.

I knew then that this cat was special. This cat -- was paying attention. He's been a blast and he's put us through quite a bit. Some things are not such a big deal. I rushed him to the vet one day because he had some crazy skin condition. The vet waited patiently while I wiped away tears. Then he broke the news that Leonard had cat acne. Cat acne! It cost $30 for the vet to tell me that my cat has pimples.

Then there are the big things. According to my calculations, Leonard has 4 lives left. These are the lives that he's used so far.

Life number one -- Leonard went missing one day. A month or so later he came home - skinny, whiny and glad to be home.

Life number two -- Trying to jump from the roof to a nearby tree, Leonard missed the mark with his hind legs. He lost his grip, slipped, fell on his back from the roof to the ground -- then had a seizure. Jay rushed him to the vet. He had a concussion, but was otherwise fine.

Life number three -- Always the little hunter, Leonard makes it his personal duty to kill and eat any creature smaller than him. He eats a poisoned rat...gets super-sick and almost dies. All we could do was hold him while his pissed and pooped on himself -- too weak to get up to go to the litter box.

Life number four -- Leonard went missing just the other day. We found him at our old house. He walked the ENTIRE way back! I couldn't believe it. He crossed major streets, but he did it.

Life number five -- Tonight. Tonight, Leonard was relaxing in the yard, minding his own business, when the neighbor-dog attacked him. Leonard barely made it away. He got up a tree and wouldn't come down. After an hour of us promising him canned cat food and snuggles -- he slowly made his way down. I noticed that his hind leg was sticky...and then realized that it was saliva. I turned him onto his back and found that his belly was torn open and bleeding.

He's sleeping off life number 5. First thing tomorrow we head over to the vet to get him taken care of. My crazy cat.