What we won’t do for our furry friends

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This is Oliver.  Oliver Twist – since he came to us as a stray and would get SO excited about the food we put out for him… all I could think of was that song from the musical, “Food, glorious food”!

In this picture he had just plopped himself on my laptop and turned it off.  He loves him so lovin’.  Well, since he is a stray who adopted us, he is outside most of the time, coming in once in awhile for some attention or to remind us it’s time to feed him. but then he likes to go out again. He’s actually gettting to be in more and more… after all, it’s getting cold outside!

Well, a couple days ago – when my little family was up in Seattle for Thanksgiving – he didn’t show up for dinner.  That is completely out of character!  My mom went looking for him, and she found him in the shed where he sleeps when he’s outside, but he wouldn’t come to her.  He cried and cried to her, but stayed put.  Well, the shed is a giant jumble of stuff my sister has yet to come collect to put in her new house (I mean, she only moved like, 2 years ago – you can see why she hasn’t gotten to it yet). So no way could mom get to him… he finally hopped down, but wasn’t using his one front leg… well, the next day we took him to the vet because it was huge puffy and hot to the touch.  He has two punctures in his paw pad and had a raging infection.  They cleaned it up (he wouldn’t cooperate though and they had to anesthetize him to do it) then he got a hefty dose of antibiotics and now he’s home.  Of course we have to keep him in until it heals, and I have to soak it twice a day in warm epson salts to try to keep it draining…

It’s doing much better, but one problem was that since he’s an outdoor cat, he doesn’t use a litterbox.  We had to buy one, and the vet said to use pelleted paper litter as the clay or clumping kinds could get in the wounds and cause trouble.  Well, yeah. Good idea.  He hated that stuff – I put him in the box and he immediately jumped out.  Hated it so much he didn’t go potty in almost 2 days, so I was worried he’d soon have a whole other problem!  I had a thought, so tonight, my dad, my daughter and myself spent over an hour crushing those paper pellets with mallets and hammers to make it more “dirtlike” and less roll-y.  Ridiculous?  Maybe.  But after we were done, I took him back out to the shop (he’s taking over dad’s man-cave until he heals) and when I put Oliver in that litterbox, he immediately squatted and I think he peed for 3 full minutes!!  Poor guy. I think he’ll be feeling much better now! Good grief, how much paper-pellet crushing will we have to do over the next week??

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