It has come to a pretty pass when our household shouts for joy and broadcasts far and wide the delights of a crap filled cat litter tray.
The event that occasioned such an exhibition of thanksgiving and celebration was a small pile of pussy poo carefully placed in the centre of the aforementioned tray. The exulted feline bowel movement took place yesterday evening, resulting in a peaceful sleep for the missus and I last night.
Ginjatheninja, the feline "owning" the poo pile, and I, have been locked away in the house these past nine days: ever since the vet said the cat mustn't go out of the house. This was because a week on Tuesday, said moggy had most of his beautifully striped tail amputated, following a fight he'd had a while back.
We don't have children. Instead we have cats and in particular one very special puss, Ginja. We have worried, fretted, feared about the well being of this little ball of striped gingerness like a mother with a sick child.
The little darling had not been up to scratch ever since he was severely beaten up in November. He went to the vet and was given the once over and a few injections to prevent any infection etc. A short while later we noticed that the little lad's tail was being dragged along the ground and he couldn't raise it. Another trip to the vet, more injections and examinations, but no evidence of broken or fractured bones.
A week later and no improvement. He was not getting back his old "joie de vivre", spending too much time asleep and looking decidedly down in the mouth. Another trip to the vet to learn the worst, he had no feeling in his tail. Amputation!
We took him in the Monday evening so he could sleep over at the vets to be operated on the next day, we would collect him that evening. We were assured that everything would be fine: they'd first X ray his tail to see whether they could do anything short of detaching it from the rest of him. He wouldn't feel a thing.
I was home when the surgery phoned to say everything had gone fine and we could pick him up that evening as arranged. I immediately phoned the wife. We knew that after the operation he'd need a litter tray as he wouldn't be going out of the house for a while. So after work the missus bought, along with catty treats, "Feline Weekly" and a bunch of flowers, a new litter tray and litter.
We collected him from the vet. He was a sight for sore eyes. His bum had been shaved, and in the middle of the hairless circle stood what remained of his tail. He wore a large conical collar and a decidedly "hang dog" look.
However, it soon became clear that he was beginning to get his old self back. What a relief!
Except he appeared not to bother with relieving himself. The litter tray granules remained spotless and dry. We thought that the anaesthetic might have slowed down his digestion so we weren't terribly worried for a day or two but as the days passed he passed nothing.
Last Friday saw us three back at the vets for a check up, and we took the opportunity to mention the lack of bowel movement. No problem, a squirt up the bum and a quick exit as the laxative was exceptionally fast working. We arrived outside our house just as the little poppet relieved himself.
We couldn't be more pleased despite having to clean up after him.
That, however, was a false dawn. Although he would pee he wouldn't poop. The days were spent regularly inspecting the litter tray, encouraging the little mite with strategic strokings and soft words.
Otherwise he was fine. His hair was growing back along with his gingery stripes and his tail was healing wonderfully. He was as bouncy and as delightful as he'd been for a long time. But bored and desperate to go out as he sat for hours at the window looking out or clawing at the window pane.
And so to last night, and the exceeding great joy that greeted the pile of poo in the litter tray.
Tomorrow, he's back to the vets and we're praying she'll give the all clear so that Ginja and I can breath the good air once again.
Happy New Year!