The Corona Chronology: Day 37

Much to her eventual surprise, Cleo the Cat has an appointment on Monday that is not going to make her happy. As such, we are already psychologically preparing ourselves for the ordeal. Cleo does not play well with anybody that is not Cleo. I yanked the following out of the archives for reference as I prepare my battle plan. Of course, this round of pain and transport will be even more special, with everyone wearing masks to heighten the drama and wretchedness…


10 Thrilling Moments Whilst Taking the Cat to the Vet


1. The Deception.

One must never allow the feline to view the cat carrier until it is absolutely necessary. If unplanned, premature viewing takes place, the cat will instantly head for Venezuela. This will happen even if they are playing frenziedly with their favorite toy or intensely grooming an apparently very naughty section of their coat. If you are lucky, you might catch a minimalist blur as they rocket to the farthest end of the house, giving you some idea of how to plan your search-and-seizure route. If you have one of those cats who can move faster than light, they could be anywhere. You may not find them for 3 days.

2. The Entrapment.

Eventually, of course, you do have to get the cat inside the satanic box of traveling torture. There’s a small percentage of the human population who own angelic felines that, when shown the open door on the cage, will magically and simply walk through the door, assume a comfortable position, and wait patiently. If you have a cat like this, celestial beings have anointed you with blessings whilst you slept, indicating that you must have done something super swell in a past life and the lay-away karma has finally arrived.

The rest of us must aggressively tackle the cat, lunge toward the carrier while enduring claw rips and howling, struggle desperately while the cat grabs at everything in the house that isn’t nailed down, and then finally stuff the furious ball of belligerent legs, whipping tail and Linda-Blair-head into the carrier, slamming the hell-portal shut before Beelzebub rises again.

3. The Transport.

Once you incarcerate your child, you must now get the Crate of Hissing Attitude from the house to the car. Sounds simple, but this is a lie. Especially if your cat is normally not allowed to leave your dwelling for any other reason. These cats, on a regular day, want nothing more than to visit the land of Forbidden Outside. Open doors, raised windows, the mail slot, all of these are potential escape routes for the yearning cat who feels his destiny is not being fulfilled, held back by a cruel and despotic owner.

But take one of these house-raised cats out into the real world? Well, it’s a whole different story then. Everything is completely overwhelming. The glare of the sunshine, the coat-stirring of the wind, the hideous aromas of nature instead of Yankee Candles? It’s sensory overload. Now your cat is howling again, convinced of impending destruction, and flopping around in the carrier like two bowling balls in heat.

It’s a known fact that your average 10-pound cat, once enraged and doing bitter, vehement aerobics in a portable environment, can take down an average adult from the sheer centrifugal force, knocking your ass off the sidewalk and into the grouping of cacti that some fool thought would look cute as landscaping.

4. The Fire Engine.

Most cats do not care for the motion of a car. They express this dissatisfaction by opening their already angry little mouths, engaging their vocal cords, and then screaming with the intensity of a Stage 4 hurricane. The eardrum-destroying volume actually increases the faster the vehicle goes, until all car windows in all lanes of traffic explode outward in a shower of broken glass, pinecone air-fresheners and unpaid parking tickets.

5. The Mad and the Madness.

At some point during the drive, usually after a brief decline in the screeching and thumping, a respite that has lulled you into a false sense of normalcy and possible trip survival, things will take a turn for the worse. Your cat will suddenly decide that the only resolution to its current predicament is to attack the metal door of the crate, and will do so with a gusto and determination that is surreal. Savage growling and intense clawing ensues, with shredded toenails flying through the air as you swerve all over the road and try to get Pretty Kitty to stop with the self-mutilation and attention-whoring.

6. The Potpourri of Insanity.

As you enter the actual vet clinic, there will be another misleading lull of docility as the cat assesses the new environment. Then the smell hits, the lovely aroma of potent medicines, high-dollar prescription pet foods, and the thousands of other animals who have ever been in this building since the dawn of time. Once again, your cat cannot calmly process this new intel, and instead chooses to go berserk, causing the crate to hop and jump across the floor as you try to simply sign in without a S.W.A.T. team being deployed to restore order and declare martial law.

7. The Enigma of the Examining Room.

Once your cat is assigned one of the tiny inspection cubicles, your cat will morph once more, this time becoming a beast that defies the laws of gravity and nature. They will refuse to come out of the very carrier that they absolutely hated until two seconds ago. Once a forced ejection is performed, the cat will instantly scan the entire room, quickly determine the most humanly-inaccessible spot and race to that very location. All equipment and furniture in the entire building must now be shifted around so the cat can be retrieved from the bedpan that is inexplicably perched on a high, dusty shelf.

After repeated rounds of lunge and capture, the cat will eventually be confined to the examining table with the assistance of all staff members and the entire Dallas Cowboys cheerleading squad, doing their one day of mandatory charity work per year. (The bouncy lasses happened to be passing by, on their way to a group mani-pedi, and they became curious about the screaming.) The cat will now twist and squirm in an amazing display of contortionist moves that haven’t been seen since Olga Korbut hog-tied a balance beam with her legs back in the 70s.

8. The Porcupine Paradox.

After all this fun activity, it will soon become clear to you that the air is filled with hair from your cat, billowing about the room in whirlwinds of emancipated fur. “Oh, that’s normal,” chirps the attendant, helping the vet keep the cat in place using both hands and one foot. “They all do that.”

Normal? This room looks like we’re the lone survivors after the Planet Feline imploded during an escalating war between the cats who want soft treats and the cats who want crunchy.

9. The Hiney-Stick Maneuver

How in the world do they get that enormous plastic rod that far up Tabby’s butt? Holy cow. Some things you just don’t need to watch.

10. The Return.

If both you and your pet manage to make it out of the Kitty-Kat House of Horrors with some semblance of sanity and cognition, the ride home will be a repeat of the first run. Fire engine alarms, erratic driving and Tasmanian devil in a box. The screaming alone will beat your psyche into a pulp. You pull into the driveway at home, weakened and emotionally-drained, then stagger into the house and release the Hades hellion.

Kitty blinks, glances around, sees you standing there, stares at you in a noncommittal way as if determining exactly how to make you pay for what you have done, then hoists a leg in the air and begins to clean. Which means the punishment has been classified top-secret, and the revenge will arrive when you least expect it.

Have fun sleeping tonight. If you can.


Previously published. Very minimally revised and updated with extra flair for this post.

Story behind the photo: Yes, I know it’s blurry. But I was hurrying as fast as I could to get the shot before the cats got a gander of the blasphemous crate and raced off to their Panic Room, slamming shut the 9-inch-thick steel door and activating all security protocols.


40 replies »

    • It’s possible that Diesel Cat may have a lingering negative reaction to the Snip Snip but, at least in my experience, most of the male cats we’ve had decommissioned have turned out better for the ordeal, softening a bit and becoming more loving. Except for one. But there was already something not right about Scotch the Cat, as detailed in many past Bonnywood posts…

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Oh my. That was so funny, Brian. 😀 My cats were angelic crate entering types, but I had a German shepherd who absolutely hated the vet. All those fangs in full flight were terrifying. The vet had to sedate her. But even then, she kept trying to stand up and wouldn’t stop her “I’m a vicious big dog” barking. She wouldn’t speak to me for days afterward; would glare and grumble at me.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Truth be told, Cleo has been deemed a threat to society by our vet, so she must be sedated as well for her visits. This means she has to be dropped off early in the morning, chemically doused, and then retrieved at the close of business, making it an all-day adventure. This also means that she doesn’t speak to us for days afterward, but we’re used to that, even without the vet incarcerations…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Our Ginger angel becomes Hannibal Lecter at the sight of mobile incarceration unit. Toe clipping took THREE brave souls and the result was still only front Wolverine parts clipped. Plus ban daids for two. And not enough air freshener in the world to sanctify the back seat upholstery. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Cleo does NOT allow anyone to touch her feet. Most of the time, we attempt to clip at home, but this usually ends up with only a single toe or two being trimmed before Partner and I end up in the local emergency clinic, bleeding profusely and mumbling incoherently. The only plus side to her vet visits is that she is knocked out and the trimming is done during the coma, giving us a few weeks of respite…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. That made me laugh out loud: my cat is the same. Except for the wailing in the crate: he sounds like a tortured baby… and when I put him in the cage for a long-distance drive when I moved interstate, HE KEPT IT UP EVERY MINUTE FOR 8 HOURS. I am not exaggerating.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. The best of the best. I can really identify with this one.

    My kitty, Bella, age 16 when she made her debut at the rainbow bridge earlier this year,
    was one of those angels who would walk into the cage when you opened the door.
    But once the car wheels began to turn, the howling began, just as you said. Stop at a traffic light and she settled down into a peaceful, purring being. the second the wheels began
    to turn again, the screeching started all over. Once inside she was fine. The return trip
    was just as you have written.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Cats are just amazing, enigmatic creatures. I’ve had the joy of living with a long string of felines over the decades and every one of them was lovably neurotic in one way or another, some of them astoundingly so. Still, I wouldn’t have traded any of them…


  5. Before I was moving overseas and taking the animals, I bought a cat and dog carrier (one for each) about four months ahead of time. I left them open in the house all that time, with blankets and other bedding inside. By the time we travelled, they were both quite comfortable in their ‘cubby houses’. This approach won’t help you, but it might help others.

    Liked by 2 people

    • We tried the “familiarity” routine with many of our fur babies. And it DID work with several of them, the first time. But once the ruse was up? That angle no longer worked and it was back to deception and subterfuge… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Ah yes, I remember it well. We had a feline who turned into the Tasmanian Devil upon sighting the carrier. He shredded my shirt and skin on every trip only to melt into a malleable angel for the vet. They constantly praised his cooperation and never understood my disheveled appearance on arrival.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It completely sucks when authority figures don’t believe your reports of evil incarnate.

      Luckily, our vet staff is fully aware that we are raising devil spawn. This realization probably set in when Scotch the Cat (crossed the bridge since then) used his amazingly-long incisors to bite THROUGH the HAND of a surprised assistant.

      So, yeah, our children have to be medically-incapacitated before the vet will perform any other procedures. Good times.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. 😆 O my HECK! And I thought taking dogs to the vet was a trial. I’ll have to re-think that, just as you and Partner should re-think the ill advised cacti near the walk to the car. Going to the human version of the vet, to have barbed thorns removed from one’s fanny, has to rank right up there with any torture devised.

    Note: When Ms. Cleo goes for her annual ride o’ doom this year, you will be met at the curb by the following sign (stationary, the sign doesn’t move nor talk. Well not without chemical aid on your part ) Please phone *insert number o’ vet* to have someone come to your car. They will check you in and take your pet. We’ll call when (if) the procedure/shots/grooming are finished. This could take a while, so your patience is appreciated.”

    You’ll then be met by someone (after you call in of course) that resembles a bee keeper – full haz mat suit in places where that virus is being particularly stubborn and refuses to just f*ck off already. That get up makes them hard to hear or understand, if one is of an advancing age and depends on lip reading skills to conduct or transact business.

    The get up will also freak out your already traumatized pet. I know this because of the Great Pudge Debacle of last week (was it only last week? My, my. How time flies..). Pudge is a docile, even friendly doggie, but some creature approaching my car, who must be bent on mayhem, or why would they dress like that? Sent him into a frenzy. He tried to hide under the driver’s side seat, which was futile because he isn’t named “Pudge” on a whim and he’s far too chubby to stuff himself in that space. I handed him out the window, because trying to get OUT of the car is likely to get a person tasered for violating the sanctity and pristine habitat of the parking lot.

    I got my arm shredded by Pudge claws (which I didn’t know he possessed. They clipped the damned things at the original visit, but terror causes pets to mutate, which I bet you didn’t know.

    They took him away as he threw guilt inducing, pleading looks in my direction. They kept him for roughly half my lifetime, and then to add insult to injury, they presented me with a bill that will bankrupt me for the foreseeable future (well that’s a slight exaggeration, but not by much).

    Scotch and Hunydog paused in their playful romps (each to their own species of course. Can’t have talk about inter-species mingling up at Rainbow Bridge) to gaze down ward in pity at their earthbound companions. There are no vets in heaven, because all the animals are healthy there (in my opinion).

    Liked by 1 person

    • See, just when I think you can’t impress me anymore than you already have, you come up with this witty, incisive, toot-inducingly funny bit. In a simple COMMENT, fer crikey. Shine on, bright diamond. (And once again, I must strongly advise you to save every comment you’ve ever made at Bonnywood. That’s a stache of gold right there, mmm hmm.)

      But thank you for the heads-up on our impending experience. When Partner was arranging the appointment, it took roughly three days for him to process all the intel they provided concerning the new regulations. Apparently our best bet is to hire a hovercraft and toss Cleo out of the cargo bay whilst we swoop over the clinic. Since we don’t have the extra cash lying around for such an arrangement, we’ll be doing the hazmat drive-thru. I sense that the scars from the experience will last forever…


  8. Being a lifelong owner of dogs I’ve never had to reflect on the difficulty of a veterinary exam on a cat. I can see the possibilities of getting through steps 1 – 6 but I can’t imagine the actual opening of the carrier and the exam stage. Are welder’s gloves and face shields involved?
    The only difficulty I ever experience is trying to keep a terrified 60 pound dog from climbing on my lap while we sit in the waiting room.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, welder’s gloves and face shields are involved. Along with appropriate insurance and good standing in the community.

      My own experience with dogs has been completely different than the feline avenue. My dogs were initially skeptical about the adventure. But once they realized that there were OTHER dogs in the environs? They were all for the interaction. Of course, most of them were tiny little things that were easily accommodated on one’s lap. The one exception, a Golden Lab, was so big that he intimidated everyone in the office. And he knew it…


  9. I greatly sympathize with you, really I do. But I feel compelled to tell you we once had a cat the vet told us NOT to bring in. As long as we kept him indoors, he was fine – that’s what she told us. Begged us, really. And that cat lived 18 years — 18 FREAKIN YEARS! Out of spite, I’m sure.
    To make up for it, our current cats are… well, they’re pussy-cats. Lady Grey actually purrs when the vet picks her up, and Merricat flops on the exam table like a gumby cat.
    I’m not bragging. We paid our dues. These cats are the Universe’s way of rewarding us for keeping the Tom Cat from Hell safe from others. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re right, there is a bit of karma-balancing in the whole scheme of things. I’ve also had cats who were the sweetest thing ever, never once showing any signs of insubordination throughout their entire lives. But, as is human nature, we (or at least I) tend to remember the fiery hellcats. From hell. Thank you for refocusing the spotlight…

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, mon amie. There are times, late at night, when that Hissing Crate invades my dreamscape, and I wake up screaming and clutching a rosary that I don’t actually have. But I’m not bitter…. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

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