Fast draw with towel averts ‘cat’astrophy

“Millie” the cat has been living here for about 13 months and we are joined at the hip.
It’s been a rewardingly mutual friendship thus far, and her life in this neck of the woods has been luxurious to say the least.
This much I know is true. If I vacuum the floor near where Millie is curled up on her couch pillow, she trusts me enough to know that the loud whir of the machine is not a threat and she can stay right where she is.
Any other cat would be clawing at the door to escape, but not Millie. Millie trusts me.
But just try to get her into a pet carrier and it’s a whole different story.
Monday was my favourite feline’s check-up day at the animal clinic. When I woke up that morning at 5 a.m. to her kneading paws on the side of my head, and the incessant meowing that smacked of being let out to the “kitty loo,” I smugly and flippantly sparred words with the squinty-eyed annoyance and told her payback would be mine that afternoon when it came time for vaccinations at the vet’s office.
She blinked back a flat stare, jumped down, and rubbed herself along the white skirt ruffle at the bottom of my bed, leaving a sheath of black hair stuck to it before leading me out of the room and to the porch door like a border collie sheep herder.
I followed dutifully, picking a cat hair out of my nostril.
I like to think of myself as a planner organizer. And while I’m okay with uncharted waters and someone else making the decisions that involve me, to a degree I like to have a handle on the ins and outs of my daily life. Who doesn’t?
Planning a smooth trip to the animal clinic is among the things I want to go my way. But we’re talking cats here.
A few days prior, I had had a brilliant thought. Straightaway I went to the garage and found the pet carrier. I set it out in the porch with the door propped open, hoping Millie would wander by and investigate—perhaps taking up shop in the thing during siesta time.
She’d get used to the cat cove and everything would run smoothly come clinic day.
She took the bait—sort of.
When I walked by on my way to laundry the next day, Millie indeed was sitting inside the cage but was heaving up a hairball and the chunky barf soup of her morning cat chow.
I should have known right then it was her way of hinting that the pet carrier scheme wasn’t going to fly.
Being the eternal optimist that I am, I shrugged it off and cleaned up the mess. Then come Monday afternoon, I scooped her up in my arms, cooed softly to my furry little friend, carried her to the porch, and tried to put her head-first into the carrier.
Lynn M. Osband penned, “The mathematical probability of a cat doing exactly what it wants is the one scientific absolute in the world.”
Indeed. She must have tried to put her cat in one of these contraptions, too.
All four cat legs jettisoned outward as if I’d just pulled the cord on a parachute and her claws shot forth like sharp knives on Freddy Krueger’s glove.
Suddenly, I was holding a writhing devil cat with a possessed soul straight out of “The Exorcist” movie as all four legs began spinning backwards against the inevitable opening of the dreaded confinement capsule.
Millie’s head spun around and I caught a glimpse of those bulging, wild eyes and a flash of carnivorous molars amidst the moaning sound coming from inside of her.
I held her straight out in front of me and with a skill torn right out of an old western gunslinger film, I pulled the “Plan B” towel from over my shoulder, quick-wrapped the cat, and had her in the cage with the door closed before she knew what had happened.
Just call me Nicole Franks.

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