This year- Days sixty-seven and sixty-eight (the Fritz saga wrapped up)
2009-09-04/11:52 p.m.

Oh man, I missed a day. I will write a long entry here to catch up. I have a bunch of photos to upload but my camera chord is in Brooklyn and I'm dogsitting in Manhattan this weekend.

The drama started on Tuesday night when I got a call from Mikki. She was upset and it turned out that the girl who was catsitting for her man of men, Fritz Neuman, called and said that he had gotten really sick, really quickly and they needed someone to come check on him Wednesday. Mikki was in a total panic because that sounds terrible and she was 3000 miles away and felt helpless to make him better.

I am really allergic to cats. Some cats are much worse for me than others. Fritz is more middle of the road- I am allergic but I can take zyrtec and not totally die (just have breathing problems and get red eyes). I wasn't working on Wednesday and I only live four blocks from the girls so I said I'd go check on him in the morning and get keys to their apartment so other people could check on him later.

Since I can't upload a new photo- here is an older one that makes me laugh. It makes him look even bigger and fluffier of belly than he actually is (and he's large and rather fluffy of the belly).

fritz has lost some weight... i swear

So I drag my butt out of bed at 830am on Wednesday and run over after being told that they leave by 9am. I get there at 8:50 and the girl is in her pajamas... and tells me she isn't going to work until 10:30 or so. This was annoying. (oh! I forgot. When Mikki told them I was coming by to check on him they asked if I could also scoop his litter.... weird request and not easy for me because it makes me cough and sneeze a lot but I said I'd do it).

I walk in and Fritz is belly down on the kitchen floor, panting. I immediately think he has heat stroke. The room we were standing in has no windows and no fan and no a/c and she tells me they've been shutting him in there. SERIOUSLY. I immediately started packing up his stuff because there was no way I was going to leave him in there. He also has diarrhea and the litter box was also in the room, with no ventilation. It stunk in there. I smelled when I entered the building and then realized what it was when I got to their apartment. It was nasty. I am accustomed to cat owners like Mikki and Kim and Sharona- toys out, windows open, no cat smell, radio or tv on... this was so not what I expected.

He wasn't eating and they said he was drinking but not a lot. He pooped in the bathtub and that was the "huge emergency" that made them think he was really sick. What he was was dirtying his litter box really fast with his diarrhea and then not wanting to go in that smelly litterbox so he used the tub.

Also, if you have an animal and you think it's "really sick" and "really needs to go to the vet" would you call someone in Seattle and tell them to handle it? Or would you take the damn animal to the vet? These girls waited three days and then called to have someone else do it. INFURIATING.

Mikki didn't think I would take him but when his cat carrier was sat out, he climbed right in. He wanted the hell out of there. I asked the girl what they did when it was really hot and she said they didn't have a fan and would turn the a/c off when they'd leave for the day. WHAT? I knew then that he was dehydrated and possibly heat stricken. I just told Mikki I was taking him and would call from my house. I took his litter box and him and went home.

He didn't vomit once at my apartment. He was playing and happy and drinking a little water. Some of his friends came over and played with him and he perked up some for that too. When the vet opened at 1 our friend Matthew (who has a car) drove over and we wrangled him back into his carrier (this time he panicked and screamed and tried to bite us because he didn't want to leave). We got him in there and over to the vet.

Very long story short... many tests were run, the vet was concerned... he pooped on himself out of stress... then all the tests came back negative. He was extremely dehydrated and his glucose level was high which she said meant he was very stressed.

Fritz is an incredibly social and laid back cat so I can't imagine him angry and stressed. But here we were with him angry and stressed. As soon as the fluids IV went in he relaxed and started to doze off. In no time, 200mL of fluid was in his back and he was back to his old self. They gave him some valium which apparently makes you hungry. Who knew! He wolfed down some prescription food and they cleared him to leave. He never threw it up and he kept eating and drinking at home.

The diarrhea never ended but they were not as concerned about that right away and I knew Mikki was getting back late Thursday night to take the reigns. The new food was really smelly wet food which was making his poo especially smelly unfortunately. But he was eating and drinking and being sweet... so I was happy.

I fell asleep by 7pm in an allergy medicine haze and he fell asleep in a valium haze. We dozed and dozed and in the morning I opened a new food and he woke up and trotted in to eat some. Good news.

I went to babysit Bain and Lillie all day and left him alone trusting that he would be okay with the fan and the tv to entertain him. I got home and there was no vomit... no issues. Half of the food was gone. Half of his water was gone. He was all "meow meow" and meeting me at the door and purring. Marjorie and Sarah and Kim came over. Marjorie and Kim have cats and they both thought he looked good and was being himself. He was being a big ham and purring and rolling around while he got a belly rub. Marjorie, woman of women, cleaned his dirty butt hairs with wipes which was incredibly sweet of her. He let her, which was nice of him.

Mikki called on her layover and cried from happiness hearing everyone play with him and say that he was being his Fritzy self.

I have to say, as good as the news was that his tests were all negative it was a mixed result. It meant that he was being neglected by the girls taking care of him. They let him get dehydrated to the point of near kidney failure. That is SHITTY. I don't know them so I can talk crap here all I want. Mikki is being a zillion times more pragmatic than I am about it. I would be punching them in the damned kidneys.

What is wrong with people?? It's a no brainer. You don't leave an animal in a windowless, hot room with no light all day. That is depressing and mean. And they said they started doing that when he started feeling sick... great, that would make him worse you total morons. I don't even know what to say. Mikki summed it up well on the phone one day with "you never even think to make sure he's not being kept in a windowless room in the heat." OF COURSE YOU DON'T. You assume people have the slightest shred of freaking common sense and decency.

For the summer Bain and Lillie have had a guinea pig named Amber. Yesterday I asked Bain what they did when it was hot and would leave- he said "you leave the a/c on for Amber." Bain is 10 years old. Bain is already smarter and less selfish than these adult women who have to be like 25 years old.

Fuck them completely. Fritzers is with his momma now and his sister cat, the lovely monster.


Together at last.

And now I am dog sitting but these dogs are healthy (knock on wood) and one is sleeping on my leg while I type. The other one is snoring in the bedroom, loud and steady (as he does). Ann and I got burgers at Royale tonight and they were excellent. I am getting to know this far east village neighborhood that I never go to and it's fun. It's like being on vacation from my smelly apartment that is full of Fritzer's hair. I only realized today how stressed out I was this week worrying about that furry man. And worrying about worrying Mikki. Hahahahah.

Hilariously and generously, Mikki is having my apartment cleaned tomorrow while I'm gone. I have mixed emotions about it... on one hand, it would be hard for me to clean it without getting sick. On the other hand, I am healthy and unemployed. I have time to freaking clean my apartment. I would never hire a person myself but since it's a gift I am going with the flow.

I had passed on it but then a series of ridiculous slapstick moments happened in the bathroom when I was literally walking out the door for dog sitting. Paper towels in the toilet that had to be pulled out. The toilet was clogged by something else. The bag that the soggy papertowels are in, breaks and they fall on the floor. I pick up the plunger to plunge the toilet and it breaks into two pieces. I was standing there in this mess feeling like I was about to cry (mainly out of the extreme tired feeling that pushes emotions to the brink, as well as a week of many emotions hitting a boiling point) but started to laugh. I just picked up my stuff and left and called Mikki back and said "you know what, I've changed my mind, thank you."

My mom has cleaned houses/other buildings for a good deal of her life and it weirds me out to be a person who has a person clean for them. Mikki told me to relax and live like a yuppie and enjoy it. Fair enough.


A note I found in a drawer.
The Extra Lens and Adultery.
Books are beautiful.
Ira Glass made me feel better about things.
Something that happened yesterday.