Monday, 9 June 2008

7th – 8th June 2008: Thumb Troubles

Arrived at the SPCA around noon after a broody and despondent morning. I seem to have developed a very high threshold level for energy drinks. I can drink six cans and still crash into a snoozing heap on the floor. I may be suffering from the onset of chronic fatigue syndrome or low-level depression, but being me, if I don’t acknowledge it, I won’t have to do anything about it. Except maybe replace the Red Bull with vodka. That should make everyone very happy.

Another busy day at the SPCA. Washed, folded up and purchased one of the abandoned dog cages round the back of the shelter for Cody's use, as he is growing rapidly.

Started bathing and tickwashing some of the dogs. I wasn't even through with one kennel when it began to drizzle. Major bummer. Had to put all the dog-bathing gear away and wait for the rain to let up a bit so I could get the soap and shelter-cleaning gear instead.

Reve and I started cleaning the shelter early but we both did not want Wolfhound to be joining in and exerting herself as she sustained a torn ligament a few weeks ago. It is worrying to us that her recovery from the injury seems to be taking a rather long time.

Reve cleaned the maternity kennels and food preparation area while I swept and collected litter from the parking lot and the surrounding areas. Bushcraft Cindy, Teck Wyn and Baby Cerys saw me sweeping and stopped by to say Hello. We chatted about the horrible feature article on me and the pukka one of them, and other matters, and good ol' Cindy very kindly agreed to serve on the Green Living Sub-Committee.

Cerys was duly retrieved from wherever she was playing with the animals, and my friends then waved goodbye.

(Here's a good writeup on their green little family. Cerys is a darling!:
NST Environment Week Special )

Resumed cleaning the shelter after my friends had left. Soaped and disinfected the Hospital, Reception/Admin Area, Shelter Office, cages, kennels and cattery.

It was while I was cleaning the Quarantine Cattery that I noticed a mother cat in the process of delivering her kittens. She was skittish and defensive as all hell, and would not let me help her get into a nice dry cage where she could give birth in peace.

And so she ran from me, with her screaming kitten dragged behind her by its umbilical cord. The poor kitten was getting knocked around a fair bit, and I paused in my pursuit, fearful that the kitten might die.

When I finally caught up with the snarling and hissing mother cat, the poor kitten was no longer meowing. Her breathing was laboured and her tiny body was shivering. Her umbilical cord was severed, a piece of placenta attached to the end. I hollered for Reve and Sugen, but the poor kitten was beyond help, and had to be put to sleep. I cried because I felt guilty that I couldn't save her on time, but Reve said that I had done my best under the circumstances, and there was a possibility that the mother and her kittens, being feral, would have to be euthanised anyway. I found little comfort in that, but prayed for the tiny kitten that I may meet her again and make amends in another lifetime.

Now on to the recalcitrant mother cat. I managed to catch her and hold on to her as I put her into the cage, but she scratched and bit and fought valiantly until we were both panting and I was bleeding from numerous bites and scratches. There was a deep puncture wound in my left thumb that I cleaned with dog shampoo and water, but it continued to hurt long after I had finished the cleaning and left the shelter.

Went back to the 'Quarters, cleaned up, had a good wash, loaded Amber's things into the car and rolled on back to the parental home. Big Bro and Sis-in-Law were back for a visit and were full of stories about their new home.

I went to bed with a temperature and woke up to find myself covered in hives and my left thumb purple and twice its original size. Went to the clinic after breakfast to have a tetanus and an antibiotic shot. The nurse put a dressing on my thumb and dispensed the necessary medication and then I was home to bathe Amber and clean the parental home and chat with Big Bro.

Went back to the 'Quarters after dinner on Sunday night, and spent the rest of the night tidying the 'Quarters up best I could with only my right hand. I had to use a clean needle to prick the swelling in my right thumb open to drain the abscess out, but I sure felt better when I was done.

I got ‘dem old cosmic blues again, Mama. My world is pretty grey right now.

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