We currently have two poorly pusscats: Sweetie and her big brother Beamer (who only recently had the ordeal of being tied up somewhere by someone, until he escaped – twine still tightly around his neck – and came home). They’ve picked up a virus which has left them with a nasty case of the trots. They’re temporarily indoor cats – about which they’re not too thrilled – in quarantine in our annexe, in separate cages. Still, they’re happier there than during the car journeys to the vet’s in recent days . . .
For the time being, we’re having to medicate them twice daily, give them a special diet (and lots of extra TLC), and clean out their cages several times a day. Thank heavens for disposable gloves and antibacterial spray. And Betadine, for all the scratches we’ve sustained to exposed bodily parts during attempts to pop pills and administer their liquid medicine. The latter smells of oranges and lemons (not favourites on the feline menu) and obviously tastes vile, as it makes the cats foam at the mouth.
A home for hens?
With our sick cat care duties currently consuming a surprising amount of our time, it doesn’t seem appropriate to broach the subject of keeping more animals. Since we moved to rural Mallorca nearly ten years ago, I’ve had a hankering for hens. We have plenty of land where we could let them run free, and I’m sure The Boss could knock up a suitable hen house in a spare few hours; for an ex-banker he can turn his hand to a very impressive variety of DIY tasks.
But as much as I’d love to be able to collect fresh eggs from our own free-ranging chickens, I think we’re probably stretched to our animal-keeping limit – certainly when it comes to veterinary expenses. Besides, with seven feline adoptees stalking about the place, our finca in Mallorca could be a dangerous place for a feathered flock. I recently learnt that one of the collective nouns for cats is a glaring – and I can just imagine that’s what seven pairs of eyes would be doing if we had chickens strutting around the field!
So, I’ve no need to learn the art of chicken-keeping. I’ll just stick to chickens as art – the only hens likely to call our finca home.