I’m a light sleeper generally. And while most people snore their way through bumps in the night, I’m awakened by them and have come to distinguish between the usual noises (like the ice machine, the creeking staircase, or even the pipes groaning) and the noises that require a bit more attention. My eyelids might flutter a moment for the usual noises, but I’m instantly wide-awake for the others. It comes in handy sometimes, especially since I have a husband who sleeps through carbon monoxide alarms, motorcycle accidents directly outside our home, and severe thunderstorms. 😉
So I’m not quite sure how I slept through a bump in the night caused by the bedroom screen falling out of the window, followed by a little gray cat. I suppose it may have happened so quickly that there was time for little more than a hint of a meow. But to the cat falling, I’m sure that it was more than just a little bump. Did I mention that our bedroom window is on the second floor?
Yes, I’m fairly certain that poor little Stitch is down to 8 lives now.
Being the observant home-owner that I am, I managed to take a shower, do my hair and makeup, and to put my breakfast together in the morning before I even noticed something was wrong. In the back of my mind, I did wonder why there was only one fuzzy cat tripping me, as I hurried through my morning routine. And once or twice, I may have called “Stitchy,” only to be met with silence.
I didn’t even think anything other than ‘how inconvenient’ when I noticed the screen lying on our front lawn. But when I opened the front door to retrieve the runaway screen, I caught sight of a little patch of grey, some muddy paws, and two of the widest, most scared green eyes.
Poor Stitch was shaking, and while the little guy usually likes to cuddle on his own terms, he let me scoop him up and cuddled in my arms for a good five minutes. Oh my heart!
I watched him carefully for most of the morning to make sure he didn’t act as though he had been injured in the fall. And he was perfectly fine when I left for work. But when I came back home, there were chunks of fur scattered across the floorway, and he had a little gash on his nose.
Most of the time, Highstreet (our larger, black cat) and Stitch get along very well, acting like little brothers who love to cuddle and play together. But apparently the time spent outside had erased Stitchy’s usual scent. And Highstreet would have none of this ‘new’ cat in his domain.
Highstreet hissed and howled in ways that I hadn’t known he was capable of doing. It was ferocious and gave me chills. Stitchy was completely confused by the reaction and didn’t know how to respond. He only meowed softly as if to say, “Why don’t you like me anymore?”
I couldn’t take it anymore, so I decided to try the first remedy that popped into my mind. I had to give Stitchy a bath. After borrowing some cat shampoo from my friend Sharon who lives just up the street, I prepared for battle. After all, I had never given him a bath without Nate or Sarah to offer assistance.
And I quickly discovered that giving a cat a bath by yourself is every bit as difficult as it looks. In fact, I began to wonder why I hadn’t brought down a bar of soap for myself too. I was wet enough, and it would have saved me from having to shower in the morning. Come to think of it, I probably should have sprayed the floor down with some soap too.
It was kind of like a three-for-one-deal. Give your cat a bath, and clean yourself and the kitchen floor at the same time. Although apparently a small flood was also part of the package. And who’s going to want that kind of bargain?
Stitchy howled, squirmed and cried the entire time; and I’m pretty sure the neighbors are going to call animal control on me. When it was done, I eagerly put him down and waited to reap the benefits of my hard labor. But when Highstreet approached Stitchy to investigate, he took a sniff, curled up his back, showed his teeth, and hissed.
I called my sister’s cell phone to ask her if she wanted another cat, but she didn’t answer. So I did the only logical thing I could think of. I grabbed a few more towels, stuffed Highstreet in the sink, and scrubbed him down too. Because he was being mean, and if innocent Stitchy had to be punished, then he most certainly had to as well.
It didn’t solve anything, but it kind of made me feel a little better. Besides, he was over-due for a bath.
By the end of the evening, I had two soggy cats, I was completely soaked, and my kitchen was a disaster. (See all those towels on the floor? That’s only the tip of the ‘destruction’ iceburg).
And then I Googled for help — which I should have done in the first place — and discovered that it this is actually a normal thing. Cats who live together can suddenly act aggressively if one cat is subjected to a different environment and no longer smells the same. And it can take 2-3 days to resolve.
Wish I would have read that before the Great Kitty Flood of 2013!
Oh, yeah, and that jumbled splash of letters that sits as the title of this post? Stitchy typed it when he sat on my computer for warmth after his bath.
Oy vey! It’s a good thing that these two cats are cute!