Friday, February 07, 2014
The Silver Tiger
Does the above feline, sprawled in blissful abandon on the silk sofa, look like a trained guard dog? Well, don't be fooled. While he'd let a burglar walk in and steal the family silver (two unmatched tablespoons from a long departed great-grandmother's set and only silver plate at that) he is a mother tiger when it comes to his kitten baby.
Kitten baby, now 16 months old and taller by almost two inches at the shoulder than his "big" brother weighs 10 pounds and is perfectly capable of defending himself should push come to shove. But Smokey still considers himself to be the kitten-protector, which is charming and sweet in a way, but the pits at times. Any time we have to clip Hobbes' nails or do anything he objects to we have to put Smokey in the bedroom and close the door, because he won't tolerate anyone hurting (or even upsetting) his baby, though he will corner Hobbes and beat the crap out of him when he's tired of being teased by the young devil.
Last night Tony walked down the hallway, right by Hobbes, who was in a "popcorn" mood. He was being silly, bouncing off the walls and yodelling like a Swiss goatherd. Tony got halfway across the kitchen when Hobbes launched himself under Tony's feet and Tony's foot came down on Hobbes' tail.
Hobbes yelped and ran under the rocking chair to hide. Tony got down on his hands and knees looking for Hobbes, to make sure he hadn't actually hurt him.
Smokey was sitting on the cat tree. He saw the entire incident and apparently was displeased that his kitten had been hurt and worse, was concerned Tony was going to hurt Hobbes again. Since Tony was in his pajamas, he didn't have socks on. Smokey ran up behind Tony and sank his teeth in the back of his leg, just above his ankle.
Off to the bathroom. It bled quite profusely, which we encouraged. We slathered it with alcohol-based sanitizer and then poured peroxide on it, wiped it down with antibiotic cloths and decided he was probably okay, and didn't need to go to the ER for antibiotics. Both times we've had problems with cat bites they didn't bleed at all. This time blood ran in rivulets down his leg. So, it looked fine this morning, and seems to be healing without infection. Tony had a tetanus shot in Nov of 2012 when he fell down the stairs at the hospital and needed to be sewn back together, so we won't worry about that.
But who ever heard of an adult male cat being protective of another male cat? Tony wouldn't scold him, as he said he acts out of love for the kitten, not out of anger, and he's right. Smokey is never aggressive otherwise. He's a perfect gentleman, he just won't stand by and see his kitten hurt!