Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Naked Mole Rats Aren't Just at Animal Kingdom

Out of the four cats that reside at Duloc Manor, three are nice, friendly creatures. Sadly, the fourth is a demon cat that will sink his teeth into your flesh without a second thought. He hides under the bed or in the closet 23 1/2 hours a day, which is actually a mercy. He comes out to put food in and let it out, and once in a while he will have a flash of normalcy and actually solicit some putting. Unfortunately, when he's had enough he won't actually let you know in an appropriate way. You'll just get a snarl and a chomp.

For the most part we just leave him alone. He was the son of a feral cat who spent too much of his youth without human contact, so he's not redeemable. No one else would want him, so we consider him our "special" boy. We keep him fed and let him do this thing.

Unfortunately, he has long fur that tends to get matted. If I try to cut the mats, I end up being the one to get cut. Lately the mats have gotten so bad that his rear end was all poopy. The poop was building up to the point where he was so gross and rank smelling that we knew something had to be done. The "something" was a shaving, but I sure as heck wasn't going to do it myself.

Fortunately Celebration Veterinary, the clinic where we take our normal cats, also has grooming services. Crazy Tooncinator has never been out of the house since we moved to Florida, but we decided the time had come to finally take him in. The vet could sedate him, give him his shots, do some bloodwork, and then the groomer could take care of the mats.

Since our crazy beast is around 20 pounds due to lack of exercise, we had to buy a dog carrier to transport him. Then came the trick of getting him into it. This task fell to me, since he hates me somewhat less than he hates most humans. On the appointed morning, I dug him out of the closet and picked him up amidst growling and hissing. Somehow I managed to stuff him into the carrier before he realized what was going on. I could see that he wanted to shred me, but the door was already latched so he could only glare with deep hatred as the voices in his head whispered, "See? See? We told you that you can't trust humans."

SheiKra was loaded up next, as he was due for a shot. He's come a long way from the sickly, worm-infested, road rash-riddled kitten we rescued a few weeks ago. No hissing or growling from him, just a look of resignation.

We dropped off Tooncinator, who had howled and growled the whole way. As we left, I wondered if vets or groomers ever filed lawsuits after being savaged by vicious pets. Fortunately, they managed to get him sedated and he slept through the shaving. He did start to come around, but they got more anesthetic into him before he could attack anyone.

When we arrived to pick him up, we heard his wails from the lobby. It took several people to get him into the carrier, but they managed to do it without bloodshed and presented us with...a naked mole rat. A really, really big naked mole rat. I've seen them many times at Animal Kingdom, and that's all I could think of when I saw our poor kitty. He was done in a lion cut, so his head, legs and tail tip still had hair, but the rest of him was fully shaved. Here are some photos:

Meanwhile, even Farquuad has decided that SheiKra is okay:

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