Thursday, August 22, 2013

Cat Bite

My friend Abby found a cat living in the El Mariachi parking lot here in town and I agreed to go with her to feed it because, for some reason, she was afraid to go alone.  I guess because it was night time but sometimes the poor girl worries too much.  Anyway, he a sweet bengal of some sort, skin and bones, dehydrating, and his fur is really coarse.  He does this little nervous thing where he kind of kneads the ground as hes thinking about walking up to you.  I think hes been mistreated.  Not only that, but if given enough time, the cat will become ferral, hes already some of the way toward becoming so.  he needs someone to take him, someone with patience who can work on him.  Hes a sweet cat once he decides you aren't going to hurt him and he WANTS to be loved, he rubs on you and purrs and doesnt want you to stop petting him.  the only time I had problems with him was when I tried to pick him up.....

This is what my hand looked like the next morning after I had attempted to scruff him and carry him to the car.  I had him scruffed properly, at first, but he jerked and my grip moved, I guess, and he fought wildly, biting me two or three times and clawing the shit out of my hand.  I couldn't blame him for it, it was my own fault I tried to pick up a stray cat and he got scared, I think.

I called PAWS, our local no kill animal shelter and they told me that there was no animal control in our county and that if the cat were to be brought in, I had to bring him in myself.  The lady was VERY rude and unhelpful, though Im not sure why I was surprised, every time I've been up there, the person I've dealt with was highly unfriendly and grumpy.  I wanted to go up there while my hand was still in bad shape and tell them "THIS is what happens when you say that to people!"  Also, she lied about animal control, I knew this as soon as she said it because my room mate's mom is an animal control officer.  ANIMAL CONTROL SHARES A BUILDING WITH PAWS!  So this lady...  They need to get rid of her, hes either stupid or just THAT unpleasant.

-- On that note, is it too much to ask that the people working in animal hospitals, shelters, and clinics be friendly?  The techs (or maybe they're just office people and not techs, one cant always be sure) who work in the little veterinary clinic I take Nymeria to tend to be unfriendly.  There's a couple who are nice but a couple of them are just very short with you when you have questions.  The vets themselves are very friendly, however and that makes up for a lot of it. 

Anyhow, I went to work the day the above picture was taken and went straight to the office to bandage my hand and fingers.  My boss walked in and looked at my hand covered in blue bandaids and said "I don't think I can let you work like that." she was less concerned about how my hand looked all wrapped in blue than she was about the amount of swelling that had happened slowly throughout the day, slowly enough that I hadn't really noticed it.  She sent me home and instructed me to go straight to the ER.

Evan drove me.  It took two hours for them to get me into a room divided by two curtains.  Then for another two hours I listened to an elderly man continuously tell his wife "Just let me know, whatever you need, I'll get it for you.  whatever you need." I felt awful.  For at least the last thirty minutes or so, I had fallen asleep.  The doctor finally came in and looked at my hand, she drew lines around the swelling and took me to do a test or two and x ray my hand.  After that I had to file a report of the animal bite to be sent to Animal Control, I was sure to underline the part where PAWS had told me there was no animal control in this county.

It also turned out that one of the cooks from work was in the room on the other side of me with his girlfriend (who is also one of our waitresses).  Turns out poor Eric had slipped and landed with his hand on the grill.  I guess our location had a nice string of bad luck that night

Anyway, my hand is fine.  They gave me antibiotics and some ointment cream stuff to put on the punctures.  The swelling is down almost to zero, just hurts if I hit my hand on anything now.  I know now just how bad a seemingly harmless cat bite can be.  There's a LOT of bacteria in a cat's mouth.  Bites are HIGHLY likely to get infected.

The purple lines are the one the doctor drew around the swelling, as you can see, its a vast improvement.

As for the cat, hes still there, as of last night, anyway.  Abby's mom, however, has convinced her that if she continues feeding him, she could spread rabies to Cooper and Furball (her cats).  Honestly, this woman is a nurse so she should know how diseases spread.  It is HIGHLY unlikely that she could spread rabies or most other feline diseases to them because most diseases like that require direct contact or in some cases sharing a bowl of food or water.  I hope Abby doesnt stop feeding him.  Even one can of wet food a day would help him.  If she doesnt, I will.  I will also continue to search for someone who can help him and who will give him the love and attention he needs.  I would hate to see him go ferral out there.

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