You’re never too old to be taught a lesson. In my forty-three years, I have never been bitten by an animal. Never. I’ve been bitten by plenty of insects, and I can even throw a boyfriend or two in the mix. But never an actual animal bite.
So am I just good like that? Absolutely not – I’m just lucky and trust me I know this. The past couple of days have been a heartache for my mother and I.
An adolescent stray calico cat had taken up residence in mom’s yard for about three days. Let me say first that if I were a stray, I’d go to my mother’s back yard to live. Her yard is literally a Utopia – add the fact that she loves animals and it’s a win-win for the stray. Both of us were trying to find the cat which she called Callie a home. Two days ago, I dropped by her house to see her on the way home from work. Sure enough, the little thing jumped right up in my lap the moment I went outside and sat down. It was obvious by how tame she was that someone had likely dumped her out. Oh how I hate that – our pets should not be disposable.
For the next 20 minutes or so, I continued petting her as she nuzzled her head and made biscuits like cats do. Mom even got a movie of her doing this, she just melted our hearts. Lo and behold, for whatever reason something spooked her – and within less than a second she had bitten my hand and was back down on the ground. She got me good, too – all four incisors made puncture wounds. It took until later that night to get the bleeding to subside.
Since the cat was a stray, Mom had to make the dreaded decision of letting animal control take custody of her, where she’ll be held in quarantine for ten days to monitor for rabies. With us both being animal lovers, it’s really taken it’s toll on us. Mom had already gotten attached to the little thing. As for myself – I feel very responsible for what will likely be certain death for the cat. I’m told I shouldn’t, but so far it’s not something I’ve been able to shake off.
Mom went through so much crap yesterday just to get to the right source – that’s a perk of living in a big city, everything is automated with call-backs. Cops here don’t even come out to car break-ins anymore to take a report. We both had to meet with animal control to file the report and let them see the bite. Today, I’ve already gotten two calls from city workers at the health department ensuring I took the right steps. I held my breath as I answered what I recognize to be ‘city prefix numbers’ – afraid it might be a positive on the rabies, or at the least a call to come in for the shots. I felt compelled to immediately insert a line about having my own doctor who was aware of the situation (done as I hear this little voice screaming inside my head… ‘nooo, you can’t make me!!’).
My most recently learned lesson… don’t pet strays.