Sunday, 10 April 2011

The cat, the wall and the poor worried child.

Have I ever mentioned we have a cat?

I say cat but she behaves more like a dog.
She constantly wants my attention, is dependent on me a lot. Where ever I go she follows me, from morning till night, even when I go to the bathroom. When I take a shower she'll sit outside my bathroom waiting for me to come out.
When the kids are at school its even worse.

When I sit on the sofa with my husband she'll come and demand my attention, my husband has to tell her off sometimes because its as if he has the share me with her. Its ridiculous.

She's not independent like a cat should be. Usually cats don't *need* your attention, they'll come to you when they want your time, but usually will chill, play, sleep etc on their own.

I can't blame her really, when she came to us she was in a terrible neglected state. She was very underweight, her fur was in terrible condition, she didn't even have the energy to groom herself like cats do. She was so weak she couldn't jump from the floor onto a chair. She couldn't even walk up and down stairs.
I nursed her back to health alhamdolilah, by feeding her, grooming her, I used to groom her for half an hour five times a day to get her fur back to normal. I did that for a month. I looked after her like a mother would look after her human baby. Alhamdolilah, she recovered. I don't think she would have lasted another month in her previous circumstances. I don't know how people can be brutally neglectful and make an innocent animal suffer like that. It takes a lot to make me cry but when I saw the state she was in it brought tears to my eyes and a lump to my throat.

Anyway, I don't know if this clinginess is down to how I looked after her when she came to us almost 3 years ago, or if this is just her personality.

She did used to be quite an independent outdoor cat, now she doesn't get to go outdoors. She's quite deaf in her right ear and she had a stroke a few years back and going out isn't really a safe option for her. She could get run over because she may not even hear the car coming. So we keep her inside. She seems to like it enough, she runs around and plays, when she gets fed in the morning she becomes overwhelmed with joy, its like putting petrol into a dreary car, she goes on a mental running spree running from one room to the next. They she calms down, grooms herself, and goes to sleep for a bit.

Recently though, my youngest step daughter has been saying she'd like to take her outside on a leash for a bit. She used to love being outside when she was younger, before the stroke and deafness and neglect. Often the cat sits on the windowsill longingly looking at the world outside and we feel sorry for her, that maybe she would like to be an outdoor cat once again.

So after some convincing she managed to get her dad to let her take the cat out on a leash. We tied her collar tight but without choking her of course, and tied the lead to her collar. My step daughter took her out for a bit and if she had trouble bringing the cat back in she was to call me.

I looked from the window eagerly to see the cats first moments of being outside for the first time in nearly 3 years. I expected her to be cautious, weary and timid to the new sounds and smells.

Then, like a mad bat out of a cave in which a bright light had been lit, she bolted for the nearest hiding place. My step daughter tried to grab her but she struggled out of her arms, she tried to draw the lead back in but the cat wriggled her neck and managed to get the collar off and ran under a door and hid somewhere. My step daughter called me and I went out as quick as I could with the cats favourite biscuits. I gave my step daughter a leg up over the brick wall to get closer to where the cat had gone but she couldn't see her anywhere, we kept calling her name and calling her with the sound she is accustomed to, but no sign. We both then took turns in going round the other side of the building to look for her. But still no sign. I made dua again and reassured my step daughter that we'll find her insha'Allah.
Cats are very clever animals. As a child my cat went missing once, and 3 days later emerged dehydrated and hungry.
I told her that the cat will be feeling scared and she'll be hiding somewhere close by, just keep calling her name, rattle the bag of biscuits and keep looking in every nook and cranny, I gave her a leg up again and off she went over the wall. The wall was barely 5ft high so it was easy enough.

She went over, searched some more and Alhamdolilah found her. A desperation came into her voice and I guided her from over the wall to calm down, reassure the cat with her voice & biscuits and try to entice her out or get closer to her. She manage to get her out of the spot she was hiding in and then stroked her to calm her down. The cat at that point seemed more relaxed than my step daughter. She handed me the cat from over the wall and climbed back over. We picked up the collar, lead, phone, keys, bag of biscuits and came back indoors where I think the cat will remain for the rest of her natural born years!

The cat was fine, started purring happily and adored the attention we were giving her, I felt sorry for my poor step daughter though, she was so worried, she needed a lie down after the whole exhausting ordeal. Bless her.

I don't think we'll be doing that again. I think its now official. This cat is an indoor cat. Full stop.

I think I've had enough drama for this weekend.

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