What to do with a catatonic cat

Peggy and I took Brewsky to the vet last week for the free check-up that we were promised when we adopted him. We had to wait a long time for the vet to finish his cigarette break, and when he finally did come in, we were practically in tears. He asked what the hell could be wrong since he hadn’t even done anything yet, and we said that he had recently euthanized our cat-hating old dog in the same room that he was about to examine our dog-hating young cat. He started laughing like a man who had positively lost his mind. Peggy and I were just a little completely outraged by this display of inappropriate jollity, so we sat with our arms folded and glared at him hatefully.

After what seemed like a half hour but was probably no more than twenty-seven minutes, we looked at one another, and we could each see in the other’s eyes that we too thought it was pretty funny—in a weird kind of way—so we started laughing with him, and in no time all three of us were laughing so hard that we were crying. It turned out to be a really great vet visit, partly because nobody had to be killed but mostly because it was free. I had much rather go home with a dead animal than to go home with a hundred dollar charge on my credit card.

When we told the vet that we were virtual virgins when it came to owning a cat, he took it upon himself to help us understand how cats think, but he used a lot of technical jargon about feline sexual fantasies, and we couldn’t follow it any too well, so he finally summed up everything he had said by telling us that all we really need to remember is that cats are sexual perverts, and that there’s no point in even trying to understand them. He suggested that we write this down for future reference, but neither of us had a pencil, so we just repeated it in our heads until we had memorized it.

He asked how things were going with our new cat, and we told him that we were having two problems. He said that he needed a smoke, so he would only have time for one of them, so while he trimmed his fingernails, we told him that Brewsky was keeping us up all night every night only to sleep all day—when we had to be up. The vet said that this served as a case in point for what he had said about how sexually obsessed cats are, but that we didn’t have to put up with Brewsky’s selfishness. He suggested that we embark upon what he called Feline Sleep Re-Programization (it goes by the acronym FELINESLEEPREROGRAMIZATION).

Basically what we’re supposed to do is to keep one or more battery operated squirt bottles in every room plus the garage, attic, crawlspace, front porch, back porch, front yard, backyard, vegetable garden, and flower beds. We said that we only needed nine bottles because Brewsky stays indoors, but the vet insisted on selling us 34 bottles plus 102 gallons of tap water just to be on the safe side. The brand name for these bottles is Deluge-A-Kitty, and they each have a gallon tank that’s good for two squirts. They also have a strobe light and an air horn (it’s not quite as loud as a train whistle) that come on automatically when you squeeze the trigger. What we’re supposed to do is to tiptoe all over the house and yard (the vet said that we might as well look everywhere since we own so many bottles) twice every hour, and when we catch Brewsky napping, let him have it. When we asked the vet if all that water isn’t a little tough on furniture, sheetrock, knickknacks, electronics, wall-hangings, carpeting, clothing, woodwork, books, elderly dogs, and so forth, he sold us a gasoline-powered blow dryer that can hit 650 degrees Fahrenheit on high.

We’ve only been using the bottles for three days, and Brewsky is already staying awake all day. That’s the good news. The bad news is that he’s staying awake all night too. He has also stopped eating and playing (he did drink a little water day before yesterday), and he will only shit in our shoes. Mostly, he just sits in the corner while staring at the floor and trembling. We’re starting to worry that he might have some hereditary psychological problem, because we can’t understand why else he would start acting screwy just when he’s showing progress toward staying awake during normal, healthy daylight hours. I’m not saying that we’ve given up hope yet because we’re more patient than most people, but if he doesn’t snap out of it in the next two days, we’re going to have him euthanized, and we’re going to ask the vet to do it in the same room he used for Baxter. Then, when we get another new cat, we’re going to have him examined in that room so we can see the vet laugh like that again. This was Peggy’s idea, and when I asked her why she was so enamored of laughing vets, she said it was because our laughing vet has a tight ass and nice dimples. Peggy might be old, but she’s not completely dead, I guess.