La Bonne et Belle Bianca Castafiore, Fred, and the (now) *four* felines -- Little Boy, Marmy, Dobby, and Sam-I-Am -- have all adopted the feckless stare of the spiritless.
(Little Boy is Marmy's brother, and has been living as a stray for the past two years. Uncle to Dobby, he recently attached himself to the lawn around the manor moat, and Fred made a heartfelt appeal to adopt him into the inner circle once his various wounds became apparent. Initially known as Uncle Kitty Big Balls, the boy's tininess inspired a new moniker once his hopelessly matted fur was shaved off by the vet, and... well, once those Big Balls were, themselves, history.)
Little Boy shall hopefully have a name soon. He enjoys relative immunity at the moment, being in such rough physical shape. That is, the fact that he poops with great pomp after every meal in a spot that he relates to The Fredster... this fact is met with forbearance, good humour, paper towels, and multiple cleansers. Once he's named and physically fit? He'd best be pooping with great pomp in one of the containers specifically designed for that purpose.
I've never run across any actual surviving implement, written description, or fine art depiction of what was used in the Middle Ages or the Renaissance to contain cat poop and pee, although why I expect the amenities to be more hygienic than the facilities used by their human counterparts is just basic denial on my part.
Surely the Age of Enlightenment had something to rival, say, the CatGenie, "[t]he only automatic cat box that flushes waste away and, like a cat, washes itself clean."
My working theory is that Little Boy understands the concept of the litter box and will be perfectly compliant once his paws heal. He has a puncture wound on his left rear paw, and a huge abscess on his right rear leg. It cannot feel good to put those tender feet into litter.
Poor little guy. Despite the enormous amounts of food that he is downing, he has lost more weight, something that he can ill afford to do. Obviously a valiant soul, he has a wonderful, loving spirit despite an obvious history of abuse. He looks not unlike Bill the Cat (and on a bad day,too). I believe that when his hair grows back and his wounds disappear and he puts on some weight -- the boy is gonna be the stunning, dominant one among the felines. As it is, he basically suctions up any food within his sight: He chows down what is rightfully his, then elbows Sammy out of the way, eats Sammy's food, meows a few times, then scrambles to the kitchen where he swipes dry kibble from Marmy and The Dobster. And still, he lost a few ounces last week. The vet opines that it is due to fever / dehydration. Getting well is a rough workout.
Did I mention that he loves me? Can't fault him for that.
He kept me company through the night -- last night -- and is now catching up on his rest, though he wakes frequently to redistribute his weight. Those Areas of Ouch are nothing to sniff at. In fact, I wonder why the vet doesn't give him something, even something topical, for the pain.
My own Areas of Ouch, the oft-mentioned World of Pain? My pain management doctor -- who dumped my care to his Nurse Practitioner last year -- is offering me Dilaudid during this period of increased acute pain. I said "no thanks" initially but after nights like this past one? Bring it on. If I understand correctly, the Dilaudid will replace Endocet as the short-acting pain killer for breakthrough problems, leaving Methadone in place for the long-acting agent. Do I sound like a druggie? Fret not. A dedicated druggie, a real addict? They'd not be willing to feel the pain with which I live, with which I dance, against which I feint the parry.
The language of swordplay seems à propos.
Little Boy and I, we are StudMuffins in the battle against pain. StudMuffins, I say.
And so, the Manor will remain in disarray for a good spell longer -- and my domestic ministrations confined to intense cuddling sessions -- wounded cat, wounded person, perhaps, in this beginning. But in our ending?
SnuggleBunny to SnuggleBunny!
Lunge! Riposte! Touché!
Post Script: I decided against switching to Dilaudid.
1. I need to be able to assess this pain as acurately as possible. So let's undertreat it!
2. The memory of not being able to breathe is still fresh. I don't want to risk depressing my respirations. (Although there are moments -- known here at Marlinspike Hall as "Shoot-Me-In-The-Head Moments" -- when I am ready to stop breathing.)
3. I CANNOT SIT IN THE CAR FOR THE RIDE TO AND FRO! It just hurts too much. How is that for insane logic? It hurts too much to go get additional pain medication...