Jumper ‘Jaws’ Thomas is my name and recovery has been my recent game. Thanks for the emails and texts you sent Elaine wishing me well after my surgery. I have to admit that it has been a rocky time, no pun intended.
Skip this paragraph if you don’t fancy learning the details about my feline operation. If the topic doesn’t put you off, let me begin with a bit of background. (Google ‘blocked tomcat’ and you’ll learn more than you’ll ever want to know.) Let’s just say it’s not uncommon for neutered tomcats that are a bit overweight to require surgery for the removal of crystals in their urinary tracts. Not me, though. I developed crystals, plus stones. Thus an even larger incision was required.
This Tomcat‘s Story
After spending the night in the animal hospital post-surgery, I came home late Saturday morning. While lying around the house at what I was certain was death’s door, I endured terrible pain, but not well. I didn’t want to eat or drink and my litterbox was as dry as a dust storm in the Dirty 30s. Following a miserable night, I made my way to the back door where I indicated that, despite my discomfort, I wished to take my regular morning constitutional walk around the yard.
However, that Sunday morning was anything but usual. What I really wanted to do was hide in the brush pile by the bull mesquite and die. I didn’t think it would take long as badly as I felt. Either that or maybe I’d get lucky and the coyote that sometimes loiters in the long grass on the west side of the farmstead would finish me off even quicker.
Wouldn’t you know it? Before I could push back through the branches in the brush pile to my final resting place, I heard the crunch of purposeful footsteps. Elaine was on my trail and before I could make myself scarce, she pulled me out by the hindquarters and swept me into her arms amid my anguished protests.
Within minutes, I was in the cat carrier and we were headed back to the animal hospital. I was admitted as a Sunday emergency. I won’t bore you with the details of the following week, but let me ask if you are familiar with a catheter. While insertion of that medical device may have been a necessity for my wellness journey, it certainly was uncomfortable living with it for six days.
Although they might have phoned, Emil and Elaine never came by. At first, I was hurt by their callous lack of attention and then thoughts of my various misdeeds surfaced in my memory. Nevertheless, I held my orange tabby chin high, telling myself over and over that I didn’t need them. Well, that wasn’t entirely true. I recognized that I needed them long enough to pay my substantial hospital bill.
Finally, on Friday afternoon, I was stuffed back in my carrier again and hauled to the front desk where Emil and Elaine waited all smiles. Elaine spoke to me through the bars, telling me how good it was to see me. She noticed right away how much weight I’d lost.
I refused to make eye contact. “Get me out of here” was the message oozing from every hair on my orange head.
Wielding her credit card, Elaine asked the vet’s assistant if I’d bitten anyone while I’d been an inmate. (You see, in my pre-surgery days, I was prone to doing that.)
“Oh, no,” the young lady said. “He was so loving. What an adorable cat!”
Elaine looked alarmed, shocked actually. She turned to Emil wide-eyed and said, “I told you Jumper was really, really sick.”
However, Elaine need not have worried. In fact, I feel fine: hale and healthy. The hair on my belly has grown back and bad memories of the animal hospital no longer disrupt my sweet dreams, plus the prospect of visiting the litterbox no longer fills me with anxiety.
Of course, it’s all in good fun, but I admit I’m back to my bad boy ways of biting Emil and Elaine every chance I get. This scalawag of a tomcat has made a complete recovery!
And now it’s time for another nap.
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Read more of Elaine’s tomcat stories:
- Every Day is Memorial Day for Wayne Givens - May 26, 2023
- A Woman Ahead of Her Time - May 5, 2023
- Spring in an Old Texas Cemetery - April 21, 2023
Another wonderful story!! You’ve captured purr-fectly the temperament of our family cats through the years. All our precious furry friends were strays who adopted us. 🥰 Happy that we’re both cat lovers. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks, Darlene. You are so right – our furry friends are special members of our family with their own (sometimes quirky) personalities!
Oh ever so funny…really great to begin my day with a smile. Thanks!
You’re welcome, Deanna. BTW, Jumper doesn’t like this windy spring morning and may just sleep away the entire day. Come to think of it, cats are pretty smart…
Sounds like a smart cat to sleep away the windy day! I expect the spring weather will perk him up though! Pato Grande also had his day under the surgeon’s knife this month with a tumor on his lower jaw! Luckily the biopsy came back benign and edges clear so hopefully it won’t reoccur. Always a firmly outdoor cat who howled at the door to be let back out immediately if he ran inside, he’s decided he likes being a lap cat and indoor kind of guy in his old age. Of course the new huge dog bed we luckily were gifted by a friend might have something to do with that. He decided it was fun to curl up with both indoor dogs on those cold winter days in the kitchen. More fun than curling up with a Pyrenees outside which was his favorite nap place before. Hugs from Swiss Alp and hopefully Jumper will continue to age gracefully and without so much “Jaws” in his name! Lemae
Thanks for the news about your felines at Swiss Alp, Texas, Lemae. Jumper likes to masquerade as a lap cat until he can’t stand the temptation to take a bite or scratch if he’s feeling particularly feisty. We know him well, so it’s never a surprise.
I think those orange tomcats such as Jumper and Mittens are characters. Thank goodness Mittens didn’t need surgery for his crystals. Jumper was not amused…
Thank you for sharing your story, Jumper. Mittens, my orange tabby from many years ago, too, suffered from crystals…fortunately, never requiring surgery. He would have found your story’s telling a’mew’sing.
OH, Elaine, I have now decided that your “tales of Jumper” are my favorite subject from your vast “REPPA-TWAH” of stories I enjoy each month!! He is SOOO REAL to me because of his humorous dialogue with us readers. Feature him more often–PLEASE!
I will certainly pass your appreciation on to Jumper for sharing his experiences. I know he will appreciate it, Brenda. Jumper may fell like writing about a certain young feline that showed up here at our back door well off the beaten track several months ago. While he has drawn the line at Miss Trudy ever entering the house, he has acquiesced to having us feed the orange young lady in the garage.
Elaine, apparently your cat is as spoiled as our Doxies. Glad to hear he is doing better,
Thanks, Gene. I hope your Doxies suffer no medical emergencies. They’re traumatic for us humans too!
Love the stories about Jumper. You tell it so well. We love our cats here and at the farm in Oakland.
Thanks, Catherine. A life without a cat would be a very strange life indeed!
Elaine, you are an amazing author. How can you think of such words? I am smiling the entire time I am reading your story. Jumper is a character. Stories about Jumper is a bestselling book to be.
Jumper likes telling his stories, so I’m glad you like reading them. Emil said you shouldn’t encourage Jumper! Thanks for the feedback.
So glad to hear Jumper is doing well. He sounds so much like an orange tabby that made a wonderful pal for many years.
Your writing is just wonderful. I almost felt the shock when you got the vet bill!! As all pet lovers know — it is worth every penny. Thanks
Thanks so much, Maureen! You’re right; our animal pals are worth every penny we spend on them. After all, they are family.
Yes they are family. All best wishes headed to you, Emil and all the furkids!!!!
Much appreciated Maureen. Hope your furry pal continues to bring you joy, too!