A neighbour was feeding our cats whilst we were away and she offered to feed the kitten too if we wanted to take the risk of leaving it with our two big males and we could sort out what to do when we got back. We didn't have a lot of choice short of the unthinkable so we took her to the vet for a check-over and a vaccination just to be on the safe side. The Vet pronounced it a "her" and said she was in superb condition and around 8 weeks old. (You can see where this is going, can't you?)
On getting home, our neighbour said that the kitten had taken complete control of our other two cats (including Jennie's alpha male, Thomas), and had been no trouble at all, even accompanying Thomas on his rounds visiting all the neighbours! We'd studiously avoided discussing keeping it whilst on holiday, much less talking about names but after being greeted so enthusiastically at the front door, it was done and dusted in ohhhhh..... less than 2 minutes so I'd like to introduce Annie to the world:
Little Orphan Annie
(and her toy mouse)
We'd both forgtten how hard work kittens are - chewed book edges, hands with bite and scratch marks and Jennie's large Peace Lily in the lounge has been virtually destroyed! Oh yeah, and she steals anything that can be carried from our bedroom dressing tables and they pop up all over the house.
On a more sober note, I thought that today was going to be a day when a lot of tears were shed. On Wednesday evening, we got back from our weekly pub quiz and my cat, Henry, was walking oddly and it was clear that he was in a lot of pain. Checked him over, couldn't see anything but it looked like his stomach was the problem. Left him overnight and in the morning, we found he'd pooped runny stuff in our sun room. We thought he'd either eaten something bad or maybe even poison. Yesterday, he just slept a lot but didn't seem in any discomfort. This morning, he was in pain again so I rang the vet who doesn't come to Coromandel on a Friday so we legged it 50 km down the coast to Thames. Henry and I have been great mates for nearly 12 years and I was anticipating the worst so you'll appreciate that I shed the odd tear on the way down. Little buggers have a way of getting under your skin, don't they? The vet examined him and almost a miracle - he had a blocked urethra and couldn't pee, apparently not uncommon on older male cats. I'd be in pain too if I hadn't had a pee for 3 days! We left him with the vet and got a call this afternoon that they'd fixed the problem and that we'll be able to pick him up in a couple of days when he is fully recovered. Repair cost is going to be between $400-$700 but what do you do with family? Crikey, I should have trained as a vet to beat the economic outlook, but simply overjoyed to have him still with us. Big, badass biker image in tatters!
Henry loves a wheelbarrow ride!
Addendum: Sorry to say that Henry didn't make it (see comments below) despite the best efforts of the vet. Annie immediately adopted me and it really does make you wonder about Karma!