archives greymatter top

powazek productions
{ personal log }

cat scratch fever

A stunning entry at Textism: "It Hurts." Reminds me of a story from my own not-so-recent past....


I remember shortly after I got Spoo, there was this big black cat that would come around to beat on her. After several trips to the vet to treat the scrapes and send me home with a week's supply of antibiotics (which was a little bit like trying to feed manhole covers to the Jaws of Life twice a day), I decided I'd had enough.

I caught the black cat in the house several times, but it always fled before I could react. Then, one day, I spied the cat prowling on the rail of the balcony. Before I had time to think, I was rushing at it, arms forward. I couldn't believe it when I connected with the cat, its matted fur cold on my hands, and it went sailing over the edge. It landed with a thud in the garden below, and went scampering away.

Spoo appeared ungrateful, but she never had to go to the vet because of a cat fight again.

{ 5:36pm }



» Wow,
I'm really glad that I live in a place where it is not only correct, but a very simple matter to call one of the feral cat rescue groups to remove a problem cat. They usually trap it, spay it, then provide any medical care it needs. Once that's done, the cats tend to act normal again and keep to themselves. Left to my own devices, I can see something like these stories happening, though. Scary.

– Devorah  { 11.15.01 @ 5:32am }

» my cats spent the summer as unwilling neighbours to a feral black and white male, who would regularly hop the fence, stroll through the garden, and beat up on or both of my moggies. Hobbes is better at running away gracefully; Peter just never seemed to get it. He was always baffled, and kept trying to make friends. Late in August, we found a nasty patch of matted fur on Peter's side and thought it was tree sap - two days later he had a gaping hole where the fur had been. The vet said it was a terrible abscess, almost certainly from a cat fight. It took 18 stiches to close it, and two weeks of antibiotics. The black and white cat is still around; but now it is winter and I am trying not to worry about him, outside with no food, in the freezing cold. Peter is fine, though his stripes don't match.

hannah  { 11.15.01 @ 8:05am }

» hope that scratch heals, wonder how the cat feels.

– Tom Jericho  { 11.15.01 @ 10:17am }

» wow.
there are cat people.
there are dog people.
and there are violent people.

marcus  { 11.15.01 @ 11:40am }

» You didn't know I was a Cold-blooded killer? It's true! Better not mess with me....

Derek M. Powazek  { 11.15.01 @ 11:49am }

» I bet my mother's cat gets thrown out of houses all the time. It's a big, white, deaf, brute of a cat that goes around eating the food of all the other neighborhoods' cats' food. He's come home soaking wet more than once. He also ate my pet parakeet when I was 17, for which it shall never be forgiven.

I hate that cat.

Tom  { 11.15.01 @ 6:47pm }

» Poor dead cat. Too bad it was such a nasty puss.

Your story's not so bad. I like throwing cats around for fun. If it's the right cat, it'll enjoy it.

(I'm a cat person, yes)

Andrea  { 11.16.01 @ 12:23am }

» Man. I can't believe I'm reading this stuff.

Wouldn't it just be easier to call the Animal Control, or other agency as mentioned in one of the posts above?

I don't know about you, but killing another living being isn't my idea of humor or satisfaction. I realize it was feral and harming your cat, and I feel just as badly for your cat, but I just think there are other ways of dealing with things.

And, a neighbor of mine had a similar incident with her cat, and she called Animal Control. Problem fixed. The cat was spayed and adopted.

Ok. I know I've pissed a few people off. It wasn't my intention, but I just can't stand hearing about this sort of thing without commenting.

– paula  { 11.16.01 @ 7:27pm }

» If Derek doesn't mind I'll use his living room to respond to this, and to the people who've sent me endless links to feral cat organizations, or just pleaded with me to stop killing innocents, or called me a murdering c*nt. All of which keeps rolling in.

In France wildcats are thought of as vermin, and in rural parts, such as where I live, there are no resources for gently trapping and spaying and surveying the psychological wellbeing of feral cats.

I did not set out to kill a cat. I was removing a wild and volatile animal from my home (where there is a puppy, a housecat, two children, my girlfriend, and my regrettable self) and used too much muscle by mistake, and seriously injured it. I regret this, but it happened.

Had I called the vet, he would have put it down. Had I called the SPCA, which is hours away, they would have put it down. I'm confident the most humane thing I could have done was swiftly end the cat's (and, it must be said, our) suffering.

It's a sad story, with no upside.

That's it.

Dean  { 11.17.01 @ 12:15am }

» Thanks for posting, Dean. And for writing the story. I was really moved by it.

Derek M. Powazek  { 11.17.01 @ 12:35am }


« before     { current }     after »

{ news }
» Goodbye old friend.

» Don't miss the photos and audio from Fray Cafe 2.

» Psst. Hey kid. Wanna buy some swag?

{ me.elsewhere }
  My snail tracks on the web.
» DfC profile
» New Riders profile
» Amazon wish list
» {fray} is page
» Mirror Project pics
» FilePile profile
{ new in dfc }
  Gaming the system: How moderation tools can backfire
Sometimes all the widgets backfire, encouraging the very behavior they're designed to avert. The rules have a dangerous side-effect: they create a game.
{ new in fray }
  "I wanted to spend the 4th with someone who always knew the way back home."

Counting Flags by Kevin Smokler.
{ new in sfstories }
  the slow glimmering descent
I've been watching fireworks there for years, but last night was different. And not just because it was clear.
{ new in fray org }
  fray day 6
Fray Day 6 is coming to cities all over the world on September 14, 2002. Come tell your story.
{ see also }