I've told before the tale of how, profiting from my absence in Australia, wicked 'Sherbertte', possibly with the connivance of her brother 'Sherbert', produced a brood of five kittens under my dining room floor.
The sinful sexy pair were banished to the re-homer, grandma was speyed forthwith, and the wonderful Karen and Wayne at Kitty Kingdom got the babies innoculated, de-sexed and ... returned to home. Home?
We already had three resident cats. Five more was out of the question. But 'look at my daughter's eyes' ... and the beautiful big black boy had already become his sole sister's best hairlicker ..
Of course, all five are still here. Eating us out of hundreds of dollars' worth of prime cuts, special biscuits, commercial catfood but providing us with infinite joy. Rag, Tag and Bobtail, the three tabby brothers who are the backing group for solo sister Tibby, gambol across my lawn chasing leaves an the very occasional mouse.. but ..
Nine months ago, we noticed that beautiful big Blackie (real name: Hecate) was very lethargic. He didn't want to play with the other little boys: just lie in front of the fire with little sister. And his belly was enormously distended ..
So we took him to Rangiora Vet Clinic, and the result was appalling. He had contracted Feline Infectious Peritonitis. Incurable and deadly. How? Why he, and not the others?
However, thanks to Kathy and Bryn, his knowledgeable 'carers' at the RVC, to Wendy's tenderest care and my mixture of love and irritation (the disease involves incontinence, usually on my bed) and bank account ... after nine months in isolation (with Tibby to cuddle, chase and clean) today, after trip two thousand to RVC, he was declared 'cured'. Oh, he'll never be a wholly healthy boy, like his brothers, but I've just been to tell him: 'tomorrow, you can go into the World Outside'.
He just looked at me. 'Tied to a bed in an empty room, like Andromeda tied to the rock'.
I wonder what will happen when we open that door? My heart will be as light as a lilac-flower ... I do, do hope he will gambol a little. Tibby, I'm sure, will take care of him.
A memorable day!
PS I think he is NZ's first case of cured FIP. Historic Hecate!