As you’ve probably seen occasionally on here, I have a kitty. Indie is sight to look at in the fact that her right front leg is shorter than the others and this forces her to walk on three legs. She is also de-clawed on her front paws. And her tail is much shorter than it should be.
Why someone would de-claw a handicapped cat is beyond me. It just seems cruel.
So, gimpy Indie hangs around our small apartment all day, mostly sleeping, occasional eating and lots of puking. OK, we’re past that point now that she’s on drugs, but I will never forget the night I stepped in cat puke. The boyfriend was a little shocked when in the middle of the night I started cursing up a storm.
Indie loves it when we open the windows. She sits on the window sills and stares outside at the world that she’s never known. Her pupils get super dilated, her whiskers poof out and she flicks her tail about, so excited that she can smell and see all these new things! The boyfriend has been suggesting for a little while that we take her outside on a leash so that she can actually go outside. At first, I was hesitant. She’s pretty handicapped as I mentioned. Outside seemed like a death sentence to me.
After months of watching Indie stare out the windows and feeling sorry for her being cooped up all day, I decided it was time to take action. Two nights ago, I crafted a leash out of a shoe string, wrapping it around her collar and then carried her outside and set her down on the sidewalk. She was pretty nervous and the grass was wet from the sprinklers, but I think she enjoyed herself.
Last night, we decided to take Indie outside again, but with different results. It was wet again, so we decided to go to the other side of the building with her where it was drier. Indie thoroughly enjoyed that, especially the dirt. She was rolling around in it, but when I laughed, she got scared and stopped.
Then, we took her across the street to the dry grass to play in. She was scared at first and then decided it was great and took off! I tried to pull her back on the shoe string leash, but she pulled her head out the collar and ran away! The call of the grass was too much for her, she just wanted to play. Indie must have had a fun time in the grass but I nearly had a panic attack. The boyfriend tried to walk over to her to pick her up, but she ran away from him.
“She wants you to pick her up. Come on, walk over here and try to pick her up,” he said to me. I had been frozen and on the verge of tears while I watched her run away. Slowly, I crept up behind her and she didn’t move. I snatched her up off the lawn and marched straight back to the apartment building.
And, so, everything ended up turning out fine. I think that’s enough adventure for us right now. It took me a very long time to calm down last night. I just kept thinking about how if she had kept running away from us that we might not have caught her. And she has no self defense mechanisms or outdoor skills whatsoever. It would have been a matter of time before she was eaten by some nasty raccoon or hit by a car. And it would have been all my fault.
I got Indie from the Boulder Valley Humane Society the summer after I graduated college. I was pretty down then, having just completed college and then ran my first marathon, it seemed like I had nothing to look forward to. My outlook on life was pretty bleak and I was a little depressed. But, I woke up one day and decided that I was going to get myself a cat, and that was that. Of all the cats I played with that day, Indie was the friendliest and was rolling around all rolly- polly and purring like crazy when I pet her. We were meant to be, Indie and I . We saved each other in a way. I took her from the Humane Society and gave her a home and she gave me something to concentrate on, other than my life rut.
Last night was pretty scary, but it made me appreciate Indie even more. Even when she throws up on my brand new Levis.