In which I destroy all hope of ever being able to deny that I am a sap and a bleeding-heart...
As I was leaving for work this morning, I saw something that made me want to cry. I saw The Nemesis, Mr. Kitters's mortal enemy, foraging for food in a garbage bag that someone had left beside the Dumpster. It made me feel like such an asshole, because last weekend I threw away half of a giant bag of Whiskas dry cat food that had been sitting in our front closet for over a year. I thought about Mr. Kitters, who eats specially formulated all-natural, nothing-artificial, no-preservatives, little-to-no-grain canned food and dry food designed to mimic his "evolutionary diet," made of raw ingredients and containing "viable, naturally occurring microorganisms." We buy his food (and litter) from a special pet store (I call it the Happy Pet Store or the Crunchy Hippie Pet Store) all the way the heck out in Sprawlville on the far east side of the city, which always requires a special trip, since it's on the way to nowhere. He seriously eats more healthfully (is that even a word?) than we do. I figure that if we eat crappy food, it's by choice...he relies on us for everything, so it's our responsibility to make sure he's getting the best nutrition and the least chance of getting cancer from the preservatives in his food.
He has a huge basket of toys and a big jar of treats and the run of a decent-sized apartment and people to take him to the vet and buy him all-natural flea spray and treat him for eye infections and snuggle with him at night and trim his mats and love him even when he bites us. Poor Nemesis has nothing and no one. Sure, he's free to do as he wishes and be wild--and I do think there's probably a lot of wild in every cat's heart. After all, I think officially they're only considered to be mostly- or semi-domesticated when compared to dogs. Nemesis has to sleep in the cold and eat garbage. It sucks so bad, and there's not much we can do for him. We can't adopt him, since he and Kitters hate each other with the fiery hatred of a thousand suns. I don't know if it would work to trap him and take him to a shelter. Besides, our local Humane Society euthanizes if animals stay too long with no hope of being adopted, and I'm not sure what the restrictions are for getting an animal accepted to the area no-kill organization. Besides, could he even be made into a pet after living his whole life outside? He's definitely more than a year old. I could lay out food behind the Dumpster, but that wouldn't really help him live longer, and I worry about making him an easy target for dogs or cruel people by enticing him to always come to one place. I'd have to feed him down by the Dumpster so he wouldn't get into it with Kitters, and what if the dump truck dropped the Dumpster on him one day? I always worry that I'll come outside one day and find the poor thing dead, run over or frozen in the parking lot.
And because I can't stop with the absurd, pathetic cry-baby shit, I always think, what if it was Kitters? What if Kitters got out and couldn't find his way home and ended up living in a parking lot and eating garbage...and then I REALLY want to bawl like a big baby.I know it's probably ridiculous to get this spun up over a homeless cat, but hardly anything hurts my heart quite as much as seeing a sad, stray dog or cat, cold and alone and hungry. Gah. Now I really will start crying if I don't shut up.