196: Getting the “Snip”



My husband and I have fur children – lots of fur children. Some are girls and some are boys. When they reach reproductive age, they all go to see the vet for spaying or neutering, because Morocco has too many stray cats, and we have too many of Morocco’s stray cats that we have adopted. I canNOT resist a mewling kitten. I’ve tried.

So, we have already taken and paid for three males and three females to be “fixed.” No, nothing was wrong with them, except for the capability to reproduce literally hundreds of more stray cats. That was enough reason, but neutered cats really do make better pets, especially when they are indoor cats, and ours are. Last week it was time for Timinia to go meet the vet. Timinia is the Arabic word for eight, which at the time, he was number eight. Also, Timinia sounds very much, in English, like too-many-OF-ya, which he also was. Nobody should have eight cats! *sigh*

Be that as it may, my husband and I took Timinia for his appointment in a duffle bag, since a friend had borrowed our “real” cat carrier. There was a small cut in the bottom of the bag I did not know was there, and it was just big enough for Timinia to stick his nose and one eye out of the bottom of the bag, so he could see where we were going. It is not far to the vet’s office, so we walked. When we got there, the vet was amazed at how big Timinia was at only eight months of age. Usually, Moroccan cats are pretty small, since they have to scrounge for food anywhere they can find it. Timinia has had fresh kibble available since I picked him up one cold rainy morning when he was about five weeks old. He eats A-N-Y-T-H-I-N-G. Literally. He is always starving, no matter that there are always bowls full of kibble everywhere in the apartment. He eats tomatoes, melon, olives, bread, corn, lettuce, cooked turnip greens, almost ANY cooked vegetable (like carrots, peas and beans of all kinds), potatoes (especially mashed) pasta, pies and cakes, you name it, he’ll eat it. As a consequence, he’s a big boy. This quest to eat gets him into trouble, since he is always on the lookout for a handout.

At any rate, he knew something was up, and he was nervous at the vet’s, like most pets are. The vet got his sleeping potion ready, and my husband and I held Timinia for the shot, which apparently stings quite a bit, because Timinia let us know THAT SMARTS!! Then I held him and comforted him while the anaesthetic took effect, which took a few minutes or so before he relaxed into sleep for the surgery. Twenty minutes later, I returned with the car to pick him up – less jostling after the surgery on the trip home. The real treat is when the vets (here in Morocco), to prove to you that they actually performed the work that you paid them for, bring you the removed testicles and show them to you: something I can do without, thank you very much. My husband nearly had a heart attack when they did that the first time: he is male, after all, and had an unexpected, unanticipated, violently empathetic moment with the cat……

Inside the apartment, we put Timinia on a pad of towels in front of the heater to keep him toasty warm since anesthesia makes their blood pump slower and they get cold, and we darkened the room, since his eyes were still dilated and sensitive to light. After an hour or so, he started coming to. That’s when he got the head collar. Cats will lick a wounded place, and that is NOT good after surgery, since they have sandpaper-rough tongues that can tear stitches and re-open cuts. The collar keeps them from licking – or at least, makes it really difficult. He’ll wear it for a few days, until he’s healed enough to go without it. He also really dislikes the disinfectant spray: you probably would dislike Lysol sprayed on your removed testicles, too. Still, don’t want infection! His new favorite position is both back feet in the air, trying to lick his sore spot with the collar on.


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