"...but I figured she had earned it."
January 12, 2015 2:39 PM   Subscribe

If you're going to give her tomato soup, it seems cruel not to make her a little grilled cheese sandwich.
posted by GenjiandProust at 2:59 PM on January 12, 2015 [27 favorites]

I have this theory about cats that is wonderful and awful. In essence, its that they think the way they are at any particular moment is the way they've always been. Maybe they have occasional dreams about younger days, or occasionally feel confused about why they can't do something they used to be able to do, but in general they just brush it off and think "this is how I am and how I've always been." Thus, they're able to keep themselves entertained and reasonably happy even as they go through the indignities of age.

On the other hand, this is also how I gauged it was time for my dear old cats to cross the rainbow bridge a few years back. If they're suffering and all they know is suffering, its time.

That sad thought aside, it sounds like Fruhlinger's kitty is living a very high quality of cat life. Human food? Catvana.
posted by Joey Michaels at 3:02 PM on January 12, 2015 [12 favorites]

About six weeks ago we adopted this one-eyed furry love machine and her sister from the humane society (the place eventually removed her eye after prolonged infection, though on review of the cat's medical records our regular vet was impressed at how hard they tried to cure her). She gets along amazingly well and even plays fetch.
posted by exogenous at 3:07 PM on January 12, 2015 [6 favorites]


I'm glad my kitty is going to live in perfect health forever.

posted by entropicamericana at 3:08 PM on January 12, 2015 [32 favorites]

Baltimore's loss was LA's gain in jfruh.
posted by josher71 at 3:11 PM on January 12, 2015 [3 favorites]

I have this theory about cats

Pretty much the opening argument of Nietzsche's essay "On the Use and Abuse of History for Life":
Consider the herds that are feeding yonder: they know not the meaning of yesterday or to-day; they graze and ruminate, move or rest, from morning to night, from day to day, taken up with their little loves and hates, at the mercy of the moment, feeling neither melancholy nor satiety. Man cannot see them without regret, for even in the pride of his humanity he looks enviously on the beast's happiness. He wishes simply to live without satiety or pain, like the beast; yet it is all in vain, for he will not change places with it. He may ask the beast—"Why do you look at me and not speak to me of your happiness?" The beast wants to answer—"Because I always forget what I wished to say": but he forgets this answer too, and is silent; and the man is left to wonder.
posted by RogerB at 3:19 PM on January 12, 2015 [12 favorites]

Our late cat Lute, a.k.a. Loot, went deaf in his later years. And attained perfect sang-froid. He always was prone to solipsism, and we think he simply concluded that the world no longer contained predators.
posted by feral_goldfish at 3:43 PM on January 12, 2015 [9 favorites]

Maybe put some little kitteh sized guard rails on the back of the sofa?
posted by Nanukthedog at 3:57 PM on January 12, 2015 [2 favorites]

exogenous: " She gets along amazingly well and even plays fetch."

All of my cats have been one-eyed ... they don't even know the difference. Sometimes they visually measure a new-to-them long jump a few extra times before leaping (when you move furniture, say), but they really don't notice otherwise.

My smartest cat lost his eye as a kitten, and for a while kept trying to peep out from behind furniture with The Eye That Is Not, but we couldn't tell if that was because he was a kitten and kittens are dumb, or if he was just getting used to the missing eye.

(When they catch the sort of cat-cold where they get eye goobers, keep an eye on it ... mostly it's fine but they're unhappy if their ONE eye gets all gummed up and you may have to gently clean it with a warm washcloth to de-gummify it, and you need to get right on it if it turns into an infection in the eye, as they haven't one to spare! The other thing you might notice is that sometimes they have facial nerve damage on the side the eye was removed on, which mostly you don't notice but they may sometimes have uneven facial expressions or preferentially eat their food on the eye-having side because it's easier to chew on the side with intact nerves. Doesn't hurt anything; just that sometimes you're like GAH WHY DOES MY CAT LOOK LIKE HE JUST HAD A STROKE IS HE HAVING A STROKE? and then you're like, oh, right, nerve damage on that side.)
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 4:11 PM on January 12, 2015 [7 favorites]

(Current McGee one-eyed cat herd.)
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 4:17 PM on January 12, 2015 [19 favorites]

(Current McGee one-eyed cat herd.)

I like how you have them arrange symmetrically.
posted by GenjiandProust at 4:20 PM on January 12, 2015 [8 favorites]

Thanks for posting that. I have a cousin who rescued a stray cat while he was working in Korea. She had a serious eye infection that caused her to go blind when he found her. He brought her back to Canada with him, and she happily bumps her way around the house. Their dog, interestingly, seems to get that she can't see, so will carefully step around her, or nudge her when she's off course. It's bloody cute.

It's even more interesting to watch given that my husband is blind, so I've got a fair bit of insight (hah!) into how someone thinks about things and people in the world around them without sight, Ryan Knighton (previously) talks about that sort of thing in this piece.

I surmise that Hoagie just seems to be adapting and reclaiming the pleasures that were once hers.

(Current McGee one-eyed cat herd.)

I've spent the last few minutes trying to work out a "in the land of the blind the one-eyed..." joke that will work with cats...but the punchline eludes me.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 4:25 PM on January 12, 2015 [7 favorites]

We had to put our sweet old girl to sleep a few months ago. She had also lost her eyesight but did really well navigating by following the walls. Still, we realized that it was probably going to be her last year. I work from home a lot and so I shared my lunch with her whenever she showed interest. She liked to bellow really loud whenever I was on a conference call. She had brilliant ideas, usually demands that we go take a nap. Best coworker ever.
posted by Orange Dinosaur Slide at 4:28 PM on January 12, 2015 [15 favorites]

(Current McGee one-eyed cat herd.)

Squee! A blue! We love blues, especially our blue.
posted by Joey Michaels at 4:47 PM on January 12, 2015

At some point, we really should have a petfilter or even catfilter subsite.


posted by Joey Michaels at 4:48 PM on January 12, 2015 [1 favorite]

posted by Kitteh at 5:07 PM on January 12, 2015 [14 favorites]

I thought tomatoes were toxic to cats. This is a cute story anyway, though.
posted by lollusc at 5:09 PM on January 12, 2015

My retirement-age puppy missed the jump into the back of the truck a few months ago. Just that once, and not since.

The chill that came over me in an instant...
posted by tigrrrlily at 5:16 PM on January 12, 2015 [4 favorites]

It is unripe tomatoes which are bad for cats, as far as I know.
posted by jeather at 5:43 PM on January 12, 2015

I just read this book and it features a kitten blind from birth. Eventually he's adopted as the clinic kitten and named Radar (aww), and the author notes that he seems to gravitate to people who are especially emotional there.
posted by jenfullmoon at 5:56 PM on January 12, 2015 [3 favorites]

GenjiandProust: "I like how you have them arrange symmetrically."

How could they have a stare down to decide who's boss cat otherwise?
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 7:24 PM on January 12, 2015 [2 favorites]

I needed to read something unabashedly nice tonight. Thank you.
posted by joycehealy at 8:06 PM on January 12, 2015

I would not suggest giving a cat any tomato-based products lest they have unpleasant effects on their digestive systems. Last time we tried that we had to open all the windows in the dead of winter.
posted by Soliloquy at 12:02 AM on January 13, 2015

We had a cat once that I think was (mostly) blind. He was a Siamese-coloured mutt who was missing his tail from before we got him, and he had a very distinctive yowl (which I gather is pretty typical of siamese).

As he got older we noted that his pupils seemed to be permanently dilated. They wouldn't constrict any more, no matter how bright it was. While I wouldn't shine a light directly at him to see if he would react, it seemed pretty clear that at the very least his vision suffered.

One other thing that suggested that he was probably mostly blind. Whenever he would come into a room, he would stop at the threshold and meow loudly. If someone responded, he would then beeline for them. It's as if we was doing a primitive form of echolocation to see if there was anyone nearby.

Sam was a good cat.
posted by vernondalhart at 5:33 AM on January 13, 2015 [8 favorites]

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