Saturday, January 8, 2011

Caturday: Mea

2011 - a new year! A chance to start over, change, evolve... and 2011 is going to include an introduction to my cats for Caturday posts on this blog. Although I could certainly list these munchkins by age since I've had almost all of them since they were a kitten, they've come into my life at different points, so that's why they're in this order ... and that means that we're starting with Mea!

When working at the veterinary clinic in high school, there was a kitten that was injured when her foot got stuck in her cage door. She pulled and pulled on it all night long, so when she was found and freed, the little kitten was dragging her previously stuck paw around. Amputation was of course considered, but there was an opportunity for me here ... a small, adorable animal in need of some extra care!

I quickly called up my mom and said there was a kitten in need and, since it was a Sunday, there was no one working who could help her unless I did with her okay. After getting my mom's approval to foster the kitten for a few weeks, we could give her leg some extra effort - a hot pink soft splint was put on the damaged leg and she went into foster care with me. It didn't take my family long to fall head over heels in love with this kitten with a hot pink splint who ran all over the place and played with our Golden Retriever, Honey Dew.

Two weeks past, the splint was removed ... and the kitten was using her foot again! As we had hoped, the nerves in that foot had not been dead, but severely injured and the soft splint had allowed her to get used to using her leg again properly. For the next week or so after the splint came off, we still had to flip the kitten's toes out from under her paw, she was still dragging them a bit, but she seemed to be completely recovered! The kitten wasn't going anywhere either, we adopted her and so began our little kitty crowd. An appropriate name for the kitten now staying? "Mea" which is latin for "mine" in English.

She has green eyes, four white paws, three yellow/orange tabby legs and one leg (the leg she was supposed to use) that is orange tabby on the back and black on the front half. Coincidentally, I found out two more kittens were found where Mea was (in the woods somewhere local) and they were adopted together. The woman who adopted them sent me a picture when they were about a year old ... the one looked just like Mea only she was dilute (lighter colors - gray where Mea's black was) and the other looked like a mirror imagine of Mea, the other cat having the opposite black leg than Mea. It was too weird ... undeniable they are sisters in my opinion!

It has been more than a decade since Mea joined our family and she continues to thrive in our home with all four legs. She is known for her antics like begging for attention and then quickly changing her mind, smacking you and running away. Mea also likes to torment the dogs by, say, sitting on the table and smacking them as they walk by or sitting on a chair and sticking her paws through the back of the chair, so she's protected, and smacking the dogs from there. Look at the picture below and you'll see another common Mea trick ... she'll find an empty seat at the table and peak her little eyes up to survey the options. Should you leave a piece of food for her at the edge of the table, Mea will peak her eyes up, sink back down and then a paw will come up to slowly sweep the food on to the chair with her. Bad, bad, bad ... but soooo cute!

As my first saved and kept kitty, Mea's one of the paw prints I have tattooed on my foot to forever remember her and how much I love the good work I've done. I joke all the time that the squished up, apprehensive, little, bitchy (she was hissing and trying to fight me the whole time I got her inked prints) paw print on my foot is that of the inked paw of my inside, "friendly" cat Mea. The other print is big, relaxed, friendly, laid back ... my "feral" garage cat Buddy.

I can't imagine not having her...