Sunday, February 22, 2015

Amelia the cat, is going to live on a cat!

(Amelia aka "pukey," "princess," "bossy," "baby bear" or "butthead.")

"What about the cat?!"  Surprisingly, this is the 3rd or 4th question after "are you moving", "do you know how to sail" and "did you buy a boat".  The short answer is, she is going with us.  

(Yes, this is a very long post about a cat.  If you are not a pet-person, then you can skip it, but I'm not sure why we're friends!)

Amelia was a stray who adopted us about 14 years ago. The vet thought she was about 2 at the time.  I thought that would make her an old lady in cat years, but the vet says cats can now live to be more than 20 years old!  She's always been an indoor cat, only going for a yearly car ride when it's time to go the vet (or taking a few steps off the front porch to eat grass when Daddy let's her--this is not authorized by Mommy).  She can be cranky "princess" who usually hisses at people who aren't her Mom & Dad (yes, a little spoiled and an only child!)  Vet trips have historically been embarrassing because in the car and at the vet, she has a blood-curdling scream and hissing combo that makes it sound like she's being tortured.  (The kid's a talker and has some LUNGS).  It's absolutely, incredibly embarrassing.  Vet assistants don't want to go anywhere near her without a muzzle.  "She's really very sweet.  She's doesn't bite, just nips {smile}."

(Can I be in the picture?)

About 3 years ago, she lost a bunch of weight and we were worried.  The specialist couldn't find anything wrong and put her on a prescription digestive and a gluten-free diet (Me:  "The cat's gluten-free now."  Husband:  "Of course she is!")  She's doing well and the nickname, "pukey" is used less often.  Then she started pooping next to her litter pan instead of in the litter pan (YES, it's clean!  She urinates in the pan & steps out to poo!)  The vet said, "she's made at you."  No kidding.  (This makes house showings tricky.  Somebody has to go home & do a "poop check").  Also, the idea of having terds rolling around a boat didn't sound fun (this is going somewhere, I swear).  On her next vet visit, Dr. Julie didn't flinch at the idea of moving onto a boat with the Amelia, but immediately said "that's a long car ride.  Let me give you some anti-anxiety medication."  For me or the cat?

(Practicing for the road trip. She prefers the drivers seat.)

When we set our one-year goal for moving aboard, we had to address the real probability she would be going with us.  Husband pleaded, "we can't leave her behind."  Me:  "But the car ride alone will be unbearable!"  When I came home after a weekend trip, Husband had taken Amelia out to sit in the car several times, to the point where, at least the howling, had stopped.  She was used to traveling in a carrier, so I bought a harness and leash (for Mom's peace of mind, really).  Being out of the carrier helps a lot.  We began taking practice rides around the neighborhood and successfully did a vet visit without humiliating Mommy.  When the house went on the market, she became a regular passenger in the car.  (It's very difficult to explain to people why there is cat hair on your dash).  She even started going to the hangar with Dad every once in awhile (and started pooing in the litter pan at the hangar.  Baffling little brat!)  There's a story about a hole in a wall & the origin of the nickname "butthead," but that's for another day.

(Tell them the showing is OVER.  I need a nap!)

She's also become quite the socialite.  She has let several of the guys at the airport pet her.  She even let the house cleaners pet her (although I got a pitiful look of "do I have to tolerate this?")  Then today, she let the lady at McDonald drive-thru window pet her (What?  You don't take your cat to the drive thru?  "Filet of fish--no bread & a milk, please.  Yes, I'm cute.  How are we doing on that filet of fish?")
(She's a back seat driver...)

So in summary, we're her people.  Since we can't explain to her why we were dropping her off with family, we are taking her with us.  She's seems to be adapting to all the change in the house quite well.  Other sailors have moved aboard with elderly cats (Facebook page gatos del mar).  Unfortunately, the best way to do it is gradually but that's not an option.  SO, we will take our bedding from the house with us and lock her in the master berth while we unpack.  We've switched to the Breeze litter box/pellet system so at least there won't be litter everywhere.  She'll also be blogging, so stay tuned.

(Pillow fort!)

(Blogging is exhausting.  I'll finish later.)

No comments:

Post a Comment