The fun started with cramming two large, unwilling, protesting, claw-baring balls of yowling fur into carriers that suddenly seemed two sizes too small. Once locked in, Rosie took up a steady chorus of loud meows to express his displeasure, and he felt the need to repeat his statements at the top of his lungs the entire ride to the vet’s office, as well as in the waiting room. His howls were punctuated with periodic head-butting of the sides of the carrier. When he discovered he could nudge down the zipped side of his carrier with a claw, we were greeted with a frantically waving black paw from the tiny opening, as if he was desperately flagging down help from others in the waiting room.
Sylvester, for his part, was surprisingly well behaved. He obstinately refused to enter his carrier too, leaving a large portion of furry ass and tail jutting from the opening, requiring me to push him inside, which earned me soulful, large, sad eyes when he turned around, silently questioning my betrayal and heartless cruelty.
In the examination room, when sprung from their mini-prison carriers, Rosie instantly marched about the room with a purpose, sniffing every square inch of the walls, apparently searching for the nearest exit. Sylvester tentatively emerged from his carrier, glanced around for imminent threats, then climbed onto the back of Gary’s bench and sat behind him, hiding behind him, as best an oversized fluffball of a cat can hide.
After the examination, and after unwillingly giving their blood sample for the annual check-up, Rosie and Sylvester were pretty much over the vet experience. Sylvester climbed into a basket they had left on the exam table, curled up as tight as he could, and seemed to be trying to hide from all of us. He could trust none of us!
Rosie loudly proclaimed his dislike of this entire situation to me, to Gary, and to the vet. At one point, he slinked over to the corner and hid his head behind the trash can. I think you’ve hit rock bottom when you hide your head behind the trash can.
When the torture and madness were over, Gary and I herded Rosie and Sylvester back into their carriers and experienced the most painful part: paying for all of it. Then we headed home with our emotionally scarred cats, who required copious amounts of treats, petting, holding, and loving when we got them home.
Last night, either out of lingering anxiety or relief that I had valiantly rescued them from that hellish place, both cats slept so close to me that I could barely breathe. I could hear Rosie purring into my ear in the middle of the night, since he was wrapped around my head like a hat, while Sylvester sprawled out like a passed-out drunk with his hind legs propped up on my side.
It wasn’t all horrible, though, for the cats. The vet recommended feeding them more soft cat food, so I added Fancy Feast to the grocery list. At least they got something positive out of the frightful experience.