They say bad things happen in threes.
Well, I’m two-thirds of the way there so I figure #3 is lurking nearby, ready to pounce. Will I be driving, swerve to avoid a deer and crunch my car against a tree? Will I be walking the dogs when Skip, for the millionth time, stops directly in front of me for no apparent reason, whereupon I nosedive onto the sidewalk, breaking said nose? Or, more likely, it will have something to do with cats. It usually does.
Take injury #1 that occurred 3 weeks ago. I was trapping ferals for spay/neuter and using our new remote control drop trap for the first time. What an awesome invention. Cats are smart little buggers and they sometimes catch on to the fact that I’m trying to capture them, especially when I have to be present to operate a normal drop trap. They seem to know I’m hiding 50 feet away in the bed of a pickup, not-so-clandestinely peeking over the tailgate.
But with a remote control trap, I can be 200 feet away. Sometimes I need binoculars to see whether it’s a crow under there or a small black cat. But after testing the trap, I noticed it sometimes jammed when I pulled the trigger, failing to drop down all the way. This is not good. The cats were watching, like furry little spies, from behind wheels of parked cars, so I decided to test the trap again but catch it before the heavy metal hit the cement with a bang, scattering the ferals.
Here’s where it gets stupid. I forgot how heavy it is compared to our usual wooden drop traps, so when I tried to catch it, it slammed my left hand into the cement, fracturing my middle finger.
One down, two to go.
Then last week I trapped 5 cats being relocated to new outdoor homes. At the humane society, while I transferred them into holding cages, one tried to escape. Having done this for 12 years now, my first inclination was to let the cat run and later net it in the feral room. That’s the smart thing to do, especially with a panicked cat. Now don’t get me wrong; I was not at all smart. I plead temporary insanity.
Apparently I hadn’t learned my lesson 12 years earlier when I reached into a trap to scruff a seemingly sweet little kitten that wouldn’t come out. That, as you might imagine, didn’t go as planned. I still have a swollen knuckle from those tiny teeth that pierced my finger like a stable gun, one tooth going south and one going north until the twain did meet.
Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah. Obviously, I didn’t learn not to grab panicked cats because the tip of my baby finger is lucky to still be present and accounted for. I’m on antibiotics, had a Tetanus shot and clean the wound 3 times a day because it’s still draining. The doctor said they can’t stitch cat bites because any bacteria needs to drain. What fun!
Two down, one to go.
So because I hear bad things happen in threes, I’m waiting and wondering. What will I be doing? What body part will suffer? I only have 8 1/2 fingers left. Oh wait, that reminds me…at breakfast today I sliced my thumb while cutting a mango. Does that count? It’s not much more than a paper cut and didn’t even draw blood but I’m going to say yes, it counts. It definitely counts.