I then opened the carrier and Ginny ran out. (And PEE-YEW! She definitely peed in there.) She ran passed Baby #1 and hid in her usual corner. She looked at him while she bit at something on her leg.
Upon closer inspection, I saw that she had a tightly wound bandage, like the one Mia had after they removed her IV catheter. "Make sure you cut that bandage off of Mia in the next few hours," the vet tech had said at the time. "If not, it could get very infected."
I was furious. What the f*ck??? Ginny was never going to let me near her with a pair of scissors! I called the animal hospital and the girl who answered was like, "Oh, well, just keep an eye on her foot for any swelling. She may pull the bandage off herself."
Watch her foot for swelling?? She had to be joking.
"I'm not sure if you've forgotten the circumstances surrounding this cat," I replied. "She's feral and it was an ordeal to get her in the carrier to bring to you in the first place. Do you honestly think with the way she had been lunging and hissing at me yesterday, she's going to let me close enough to inspect her foot??"
"Oh," she said. "Well, we're open 24 hours. You can always bring her back in."
ARRRRGH!! I took the phone away from my ear and started waving it around. It was either that or yell. Baby #1 would only sleep for, at most, 20 minutes at a time last night. And he only slept 3 times, so I was functioning on a combined total of less than an hour of sleep. I had zero patience left.
"Okay," I said slowly. "Except that goes back to the issue of her being feral. She's traumatized as it is and has stitches. I can't go chasing her around with blankets and shoving her in a carrier again. Doing that yesterday alone took a long time."
She seemed to finally get it. "Okay. Try to keep an eye on her behavior. If she doesn't pull it off in a few hours, call me back and we'll figure something out."
Yeah, your ass (or someone else's) coming out to my house is what I figure.
So after that phone call, I checked on Ginny and Baby #1. She was in the same spot and #1 was just crawling in circles. His shrieks were even louder and more frantic.
I finally couldn't stand it and picked him up. He instantly stopped crying and fell asleep in my hands. That was about 25 min. ago and he's been sleeping ever since. I think that mess wore him out.
The whole night and this morning were tiresome. Here's me at about 3:00 a.m.:
The only way he'd even consider sleeping last night was if I let him lie on my chest. He balked and crawled out of the warm baby box and wouldn't sit in my lap either. So after feeding, this is how he'd settle:
I swear, last night was the longest night of my life.
This morning the hospital had called at 8:00 to let me know Ginny was ready to go home. I loaded up Baby #1 into the front harness carrier...
...and off we went.
The vet said that Ginny was displaying behavior not typical of a feral cat. While she was scared, she didn't attack people that walked by the cage and she didn't freak out when a tech reached in to add more food. She also got into the carrier by herself when, with most ferals, it usually takes prodding.
They really believe she was owned at one point, but was on the street longer than she had been with humans, so she doesn't trust anyone. I'm not going to give up on her just yet, so I'll give her time. I just really want her to feed and care for Baby #1.
And I think Baby #1 is, like, a 3 week old kitten in a day old's body. I was taught how to induce him to pee and poop, but each time I did that, he didn't respond. Instead, he peed and pooped on me at will.
The vet tech was visibly stunned by this. "That is so strange," she mused. "Babies never do that."
Yeah, well. What exactly about this whole fiasco would you ever tag as normal??
Even if I have to feed Baby #1 for the next few weeks, I don't care. I'm just glad he and Ginny are okay so far.
I brought Baby #1 back in as soon as I posted this and about a minute after I left, his cries stopped. I opened the door and Ginny immediately started growling at me. Sure enough, Baby #1 was tucked under her, nursing.
You can see him slightly under her chin.
What a relief! In about 2 weeks he'll begin walking around, a little independent of her, so I'll be able to resume bonding with him. I'm just so happy he's getting the love and nutrition he needs!
Now if only Ginny pulls that bandage off herself, life will be good.