Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Clyde as a teacher.

Our special needs cat, Clyde, must be out of his teenage years. You know what it's like living with teenagers, they are slobs and don't care who knows it. Then they, well most, grow up and decide they no longer want to live in a pig sty.

Clyde's pig sty was his litter box, he didn't care what shape it was in, he would use it. Zoe found it appalling and averted her eyes and held her nose as she headed for the basement where she has 3 litter boxes to choose from and none are frequented by Clyde.

Clyde had a curious bathroom routine, after dropping an unusually pungent load, sometimes just as Bruce was eating breakfast, he races through the house, skittering and sliding in joy. I did not know a bodily function could be so liberating. That was usually my cue to go empty the litter box before we were overtaken by the fumes.

Lately though, I've noticed some unusual behavior, Clyde was in the downstairs bathroom, smelling the floor and wall and calling in the most mournful and deep voice, "MOWWWWW, MOWWWWW!" I carried him back to his litter box which he promptly used. I did change it then because it was rather nasty.

I use shredded newspaper for litter, it's cheap, free and bio degradable so I try to remember to change the litter frequently, usually my nose tells me but sometimes I put it off. One day last week Clyde started his fussing in the bathroom so I carried him to the litter box but found it in deplorable condition. I grabbed it and ran to the garage where I dumped the sorry mess in a dog food sack that I have for that purpose and raced back into the house. Clyde was on the rug where it sits, scratching a spot so I didn't stop to dust the box with baking soda, pulled the door open on the shredder and filled it with fresh newspaper. Clyde was humped and just ready to drop a load when I scooped him up and deposited him in the litter box. He staggered backwards. fell out of the box and landed bottom first into his waterer where a miniature tootsie roll fell into the water. As I was putting him back in the box, another fell on the rug beside the box. I steadied him until his equilibrium took over, then left him to the task at hand. Clyde stayed in the litter box quite awhile, probably trying to calm his racing heart,

 I cleaned his water bowl and put the other offending object in the litter box and took it back to the garage to clean it properly and get ready for the next round. It wasn't long in coming, I was in bed one evening when Clyde came upstairs and proceeded around our bedroom, sniffing walls and carpets and yowling.

"OH CRAP!" (Literally!) I jumped out of bed, scooped him up and headed downstairs, praying that Clyde had a firm grip on things. I found his litter box in bad shape so took it and him to the garage, I wasn't putting him down until I had the litter replaced. This time there were no accidents, Clyde must be getting used to the 'grab, dash and plop' scenario.

I do think Clyde will be glad to see green grass again because there is nothing more satisfying to him than using the great outdoors as a bathroom, as long as it's not too hot, too cold, too windy, too rainy, not at all rainy.

But for now, when Clyde speaks, I listen.

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