That’s my brain talking to me, by the way, not some crazed coach or hard-core employer or anything like that. I’m beginning to wonder if I have some electricity, electromagnetic force, radioactive force field, maybe a wildly colored aura (like my mom supposedly has) or something like that. . .
Two cats in the last two days went wildly ballistic in dramatic fashion with no warning. I was restraining both at the time of the explosion and through the resultant teeth and claw yo-yo. Honestly, I am slow to let go of a fractious cat because all these bad scenarios run through my head. What if kitty bites or scratches someone else after I’ve let it go? What if kitty runs somewhere and we can’t find it or get it out? What if the cat tries to get away and is hurt by something (dogs, needles, loose drugs, insert anything here__________) in the hospital? What if the kitty gets away from me then runs out a door and gets outside, where a lot of really bad things could happen? So I end up holding/juggling the cats until they either calm back down or someone hands me a glove/towels/carrier. And I have to say I’m a pretty good cat wrangler. I have pretty fast hands I would say. And I’m able to anticipate their actions a lot of the time. It’s actually one of my favorite parts of the job–a LOT of people are scared of the sharp ends of cats.
The first explosive cat HATES to be pilled. The vet was giving a series of three oral meds, while I was holding feet down. The kitty didn’t like it, but it was nothing I haven’t seen before–just drooling, tucking the head, trying to spit the pills back up, and attempts to scratch-per the usual. Then, suddenly, the cat began flying off the counter, trying to hit the ceiling. I was trying to push it back down and get it back under control so there was a comical (after the fact) kitty “dribbling” (as in basket ball) effect. Turns out the cat got stressed over the medicating and began to panic due to respiratory distress. I’d panic too if I couldn’t breathe for any length of time.
Today, same vet and I had to take an x-ray of a tri-color (read-notoriously naughty) cat that had inappetance for two or so days. Sure, the kitty has tried to give the teeth and claw in the exam room when the vet tried to look in the mouth or palpate the abdomen. But nothing that even warranted towel or gloves. So we’ve got the cat lieing on it’s side for the radiograph and I rev the foot pedal, and kitty loses it. Working with cats, I know this will happen more often then not (cats HATE that noise) and I aborted clicking. Usually when the extra noise stops, so does the cat’s freak out. Not this buddy. I was still somehow holding the kitty as it went hysterical. I did not want it to get back behind the x-ray stuff as it is a nightmare to try to get cats back out of there. I’ve had to spend 45 minutes on a busy Friday trying to disentangle a cat from the narrow place between the x-ray table and wall, and I wanted no part of that on a Saturday. Finally, the cat (or I?) released and it flew toward the door–which luckily, I had closed on my way into the processor room. The cat looked like it was having a bad trip: Eyes wide, jumping as if some imaginary attacker were after it, jumping high into the corner. Maybe it got into some toxin and started having some hallucination right then?
Anyway, no warning. For either, and that is very unusual. You will usually at the very least feel a cat tense up when it’s getting ready to ramp up. Or there will be body language of some sort. But with these two–not really any warning for such severe reactions. And of course, my hands are all effed up. More on that in the next installment.