Sunday, June 21, 2009
"Poor cat," said the woman on the corner who runs a bottled-water store. "He got hit by a car. I feel so bad for him."
We did too, but I confess we didn't stop and do anything right then. The cat slunk away to a hiding place and we walked off with heavy hearts. We got dinner and saw a movie. But we couldn't get the image out of our heads. By bedtime, we knew we had to do something.
We got up the next morning ready for battle, figuring this was a streetwise cat who wouldn't take kindly to being shoved in a basket. But when we went down to the Posko (security post) on the corner, where the cat hangs out, we found him asleep and utterly pliable. The bottled-water seller picked him up and put him right in Susu's cat carrier, where he settled down and started munching treats.
After a traumatic, howling taxi ride (sorry, mr. Express taxi driver!), I got him to the vet's. She put him on the table and gave him a shot of anesthesia, and it quickly became clear that this was a former housecat. For one thing, he was sweet as pie. He kept rubbing against my hand and purring even after the evil vet jabbed him with needles and poked around in his wounds. For another, he's fat -- 4 kilograms, or about 9 pounds, which is enormous for a Jakarta cat!
As the shot took effect, the cat got wobbly and his eyelids started to droop. Then he threw up all his kitty treats, poor guy, as well as some fried rice he'd stolen that morning and a long, wiggly, very-much-alive worm. Our agenda promptly expanded to include de-worming. The vet also checked out a wound on his side, which I figured was associated with the car accident. Not so, she said -- it was a burn, probably caused by somebody tossing boiling water on him.
As the vet bandaged him up, my treat-and-release plan dissolved in front of my eyes. The cat needs to stay clean and out of danger for another couple of weeks. He really can't be limping around in traffic and dumpster-diving for his meals. So, inevitably, I brought him home.
And that's where he is now, gradually coming out of the anesthesia. I got him a cage to protect him from Susu and keep him out of trouble when we're not around. He's going to live in our home office while he's recuperating.
We're taking care of him till he's better but we're NOT keeping him forever. I know you don't believe me -- I can see you shaking your head with a knowing smirk -- but we're not. We are going to find him a home.
So ... one sweet, cuddly, box-trained, down-on-his-luck Jakarta kitty is looking for an angel. Could it be you?