Bella's Byline

     My fourth nap of the day was interrupted by a horrible dream.  I had wings and two webbed feet and I was stuck on an exercise wheel in the middle of the surgery room floor.  I opened my mouth to meow for help but nothing came out.  I had no interest in grooming myself and my food bowl was full of grass, weeds and grains.  I got out of my bed and stretched, doing my best to shake off the dream.  It was no wonder after the goings on at the clinic this week.

     It started on Tuesday with a sick ferret.  Poor thing came in all long and lethargic, not interested in socializing at all.  He stayed with us for several hours as the doctor worked with him.  Once his meds kicked in he started getting pretty lively.

     "Hey there," I stared at him, standing just outside his carrier.  Whack, whack, whack!  He smacked the door repeatedly.  "Whoa," I stared at him, taken aback.  "How are you feel...."  Smackity, whack, whack, whack!  He pummeled the carrier door and proceeded to throw a fit, his back feet running in place while he threw little ferret fists in my direction.  "Well, excuse me," I breathed.  "I was simply trying to...."  But I left the though unfinished.  Muhammed Ferret-Li was throwing his whole body into it now, against the carrier door, scratching, punching and wriggling.

     "Don't bother him Bella," the doctor with glasses said to me.  I crouched, ready to sprint away from him if he tried to examine me.  He continued walking up to the front of the clinic.  I scowled after him.  Why does everyone assume I'm bothering others?  Cats are curious by nature and I'm a prime example of my kind.

     On Wednesday the duckling came in. A small, fuzzy, baby creature this little guy really needed us.  It turned out he had a broken leg.  The doctor handled him very carefully after his X-Ray and put a splint on his tiny leg.  As he lay on a cushy bed in his box, I made my way over.  Amanda lifted his box up and put him on top of the X-Ray table just as I was getting ready to get a good look.

     "Don't bother him Bella," she warned me.  What in the heck?  I whipped my head around and started licking my back, pretending I didn't hear her.

     "I know you hear me Missy," she said.  "Leave the little duck alone."  I stayed where I was as the girls came over one by one.  They oohed and aahed and told duckling how cute he was and how sweet he was and how precious he was.  When the doctor cam back to look at his leg again, he lifted him out of his box onto the surgical table and I finally got a good look.  He had weird feet and a rounded belly, a tiny fuzzy head and little brown eyes.  Again a chorus of affectionate phrases came from all of the girls.  When the tiny duckling began to chirp and flutter it sounded very tender and sweet.  I decided to sing along with him and let out my own chorus of meows.

     "What Bella?" Deanna asked me.  "You let him alone."  That did it.  I stalked off whipping my tail back and forth as hard as I could.  I needed to be around one of my kind.  Where were all the cats this week anyway?  I sat in the lobby when the duckling was discharged.  Everyone came up to say goodbye and learned that the duckling had been rescued from an organization that took in abandoned backyard fowl.  He now belonged to a little boy who loved him and he slept with that boy in his bed every night.  I stared at the man as he carried the duckling out the door.  He would take him home to his little boy and for that I was happy. 

     Friday started out well enough.  Courtney gave me some extra Greenies after breakfast and Jo Anne let me sit on her charts while she talked on the phone.  The doctor didn't try to examine me and I watched three lizards through the window before my first nap.  Then a woman ran in with a box.  I pushed down my jealous feelings in case it was another cute little duckling, but it wasn't.  The woman revealed that a possum had been hit and killed on the side of the road and in the box were her three babies.

     While the calls were being made to a wildlife organization that would take over their care, I approached the possum box with my routine welcome stare in mind.  I was met with hissing and the baring of tiny teeth.

     "Leave those cuties alone Bella," I was told.  What was so cute about them?  Nothing, that's what.  Hissing and behaving the way they were.  I wouldn't be told to go away again.  I stood my ground but I began to feel sleepy.  I went to my "house" and climbed into bed where I was met with my nightmare.

     I decided to wait for clients who wanted to pet me in the lobby.  That would cheer me up.  Or maybe I would see some cats who were coming in for their annual check-ups.  I ran up front and sat by the scale.  Things were going to perk up and I would make fast friends with the next cat I saw. I cleaned my paws and offered my most alert stare as I sat.  And then the door opened and a man walkedin with a bearded dragon on his shoulder.