My Cat and I Meet a Leprachaun

Sparkle, my small, short-haired gray cat, is looking at me with her big golden eyes. ‘Something is wrong,’ she says.

“What is it, Sparkle?”

She walks toward me and I notice her left, hind leg is out to the side and she can’t put any pressure on it.

“Oh, no! What happened, Sparkle?”

Sparkle just looks at me.

It is 6PM and I have been gone all day. What happened while I was gone from home?

I lift her up and tuck her against my chest.
“Tomorrow”, I tell her, “we go to the vet.”

After a restless night with Sparkle snuggled with me under the covers, tomorrow comes and I get an appointment with the vet for later in the day.

At 2PM, I haul out the cardboard cat carrier. Sparkle looks alarmed. I explain where we are going and Sparkle says, ‘no.’

I grab her up and nustle her into the carrier. She leaps for the exit as I push down the cardboard flaps and top. Her head is out. I push it down. Her head pops out. I push it down. Dang. The flaps won’t hold. There is a massive struggle with Sparkle, me and the box. Finally, I give up.

Sparkle runs free and I’m out to the garage to get the giant, heavy plastic and steel pet carrier.

I rinse it off on the lawn, brush off the spiders, their webs and leaves and tuck in a towel.

I drag the monstrous contraption to the house. This won’t be an easy catch and collect.

Sparkle is waiting for me in the house. She’s a good cat. She never bites or scratches or yowls,no matter how much provocation. When my small grandchildren love her way too much, she just relaxes and lets them drag her from room to room.
She’s the type that would wear a bonnet and trousers if that would make you happy.

Sparkle is looking at me. I open the rusted metal fence like door to the carrier. Sparkle lets me pick her up and being careful of her leg, I push her through the door.

No, wait, what I mean is, I try and push her through the door. Her body seems to expand sideways and her claws grab the metal screen. I shake her off. We try, again. Back and forth, back and forth. A silent battle. I’m pushing, she’s resisting. I get her part way in, she gets out. For a cat with an injured leg, she has enormous energy.

I’m sweating. We’re going to miss the vet appointment! With strength pushed by desperation I shove Sparkle into the carrier.
She swears at me! She has never, ever sworn at me. It is a great hissing sound that sounds like “shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit!”
Of course, I did shut her tail in the door.

Here is where we meet the leprechaun.
He is at the vet’s office and he is the new vet.
He bounds into the small room where Sparkle and I are waiting. He’s a little, bitty leprechaun who’s maybe 60 in earth terms? He’s tiny and wiry and Irish. He bounces and leaps and chatters rapidly. Both Sparkle and I are transfixed.

He calls Sparkle, ‘Punkin.’

“Here we go, Punkin!” he says as he slips a thermometer up her rear end. Boy, is she surprised.

It’s “OK, Punkin, this and OK Punkin, that.”

Then I realize the leprechaun is also calling me Punkin!

“OK, Punkin, ” he says to me in due course, “it doesn’t look serious. No broken bones. I’ll give her an antibiotic shot and give you some pain meds to give her and you both can be on your way.”

“And Punkin,” he adds, “may be a little tired from the pain meds so just let her sleep. If she wobbles and falls over, flap on the floor, don’t give her quite so much.”

Sparkle and I look at each other.

“So, Punkin, if you need to come back, just give me a call and I’ll be right here.”

With that, Dr. Leprechaun darts out the door, and his tiny little head doesn’t even show from the other side, through the window in it.

I look at Sparkle and she looks at me. Normally, I get so upset when I take an animal to the vet that I get the runs. I’m realizing now that I’ve had such an interesting time with the Leprechaun that I haven’t had to make a bathroom run. Maybe the Leprechaun has cured me, too?

There is another enormous struggle to get ‘Punkin’ into the carrier but at last we are loaded up, paid up and we take off.
On the way home, I ask Sparkle, “Well, would you like me to give you a hearty dose of those pain meds and we can watch you fall over, flap on your side on the floor?”

She doesn’t think so. She says I should slip them to my friend Bill who lives in my Studio and watch him fall over fraaawph! on his side on the floor. We agree that might be fun.
We’ll let ya’ know….
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