October 30, 2012 by Last Star blog
I have been remiss in writing this one, sorry. Today I had some free time from my taskings and am able to catch up. Hank made a reference in one of his posts to the cats going to get their rabies titers here at Cherry Point a couple of weeks ago, or yesterday, or a year ago—time has managed to run together so completely I have no idea what day of the week it is. As you all know we have our Mini & Cooper with us for this adventure, what you don’t know is the total ass pain it is to take the cats out of the country—or rather into another country. Only recently did the British Virgin Islands stop requiring 6 month quarantine before visiting the islands. To get into the Bahamas, (our first stop) requires the cats to be chipped, vaccinated, de-wormed, de-flead (ok, this is all normal everyday ops), and with a health certificate not more than 10 days old upon arrival into the country. Not sure how to do that from a boat! When you arrive into a new port you fly a yellow quarantine flag until you check in and clear customs and then you fly their country flag, in addition to your own country’s flag. With cats you have to go through the agriculture department, as well. For Turks and Caicos, our second country to visit after the Bahamas, in addition to the above paper work, one set of Rabies Titers is required, and for the BVI’s 2 titers are required taken a month apart. St. Kitts only accepts the titers from one specific lab…we will not be docking in St. Kitts. So, off I go (whenever it was) to take Mini & Cooper to the vet here at Cherry Point. Now, usually the way it goes is that Cooper is on his leash and Mini is in the carrier. Cooper acts like a dog and Mini is like that franken-kitty—just for reference. We arrive at the vet and there are two dogs in the waiting room, Cooper is cautious on his leash but not crazy-cat-claws-out-big-tail cat like Mini is inside her carrier, because we all know how scared big brown labs can get from scary-cats-in-carriers. Everyone calms down and we are called into an exam room. Cooper goes first and, as usual, he is a great patient. The tech is very sweet with him and he responds in kind. He not is a gorgeous cat but very well behaved. However, the blood drawing takes place in another room where they ‘restrain’ the animals and take 3 vials of blood for the titer. She takes Cooper and they disappear. Mini and I are left to play in the exam room waiting. Cooper comes back very humbled and wobbly, ugh, he is covered in alcohol and a bit of blood. Mini runs to him and furiously begins to clean him and comfort him. My heart breaks at his ‘demeanor’ of ‘I feel like shit, Mom.’ “How did it go?” I ask the tech. “Great, it usually takes about 4 people to restrain a cat and he was very good about it.” Ok, well: “um, well, this one is probably not going to go as well, she is like the cartoon cat with all claws out when she gets nervous.” “oh, that’s okay, we are used it—most cats are.” “ok, good luck.” Out the door they go. I help Cooper clean himself up and he snuggles in my lap was we wait for Mini. It takes about 2 minutes before I hear banshee cat screams and human yelps from the restraining room. More feet pound by the door. More 80 decibel banshee yeowls. Cooper and I are very disturbed and upset; we are both pressed against the door since it is locked from the other side. Finally, a different tech comes in and asks for the carrier, mnnn that’s a bad sign. Our tech comes back with Mini in the carrier and our paperwork, she is a bit pale. Hmn, “how did it go?” Well, it seems Mini was all claws and teeth and it took 6 techs to restrain her and our sweet little tech has two huge puncture bite wounds on one arm and her thumb is split open. What a bloody mess! I am mortified. They are bandaging her thumb and having the discussion on how many stitches she will require and who is going to drive her to the ER. Cooper is sniffing at Mini’s carrier and I peek inside, I expect to see a satisfied Cheshire grin reserved for Alice but all I see is my baby covered in alcohol and blood trembling like an October leaf. Cooper stands next to carrier while I pay. I tried to warn them. I did. They should were gloves at the very least or sedate the cats. I felt bad; I did—particularly since our tech was super sweet with both cats during the exam part. The cats didn’t want to go out and play for the rest of the day, but the next day they were fine. Long forgotten was the l’abattoir.