Gizmo's ears have been looking very ratty lately. He had a cut on one that seemed infected and he was very touchy about it. Elf took him to the vet today, and it's much worse than I thought. He has squamous-cell carcinomas on both ears, and will have to have them almost completely taken off to prevent the cancer spreading. He'll be left with "teddy bear ears" - little flaps to protect his sensitive inner ears somewhat. The op might be tomorrow or the next day, so the poor fella is going to be sleeping at the vet's for two or maybe three nights. On the upside his general health is good and his heart particularly seems strong, so his chances of surviving the general anaesthetic are very good, for a cat his age. He is very old.
I was given Giz by a friend in about 1992 or 93, and he was already 2 or 3 years old. which would make him something like 16. I feel quite guilty about my general neglect of Gizmo since we have had kids. He has been a devoted mate to me for all this time, and now I find it so hard to spend much time with him. I am beating myself up about his ears, as I'm sure if I had checked them sooner he might not need to have the operation. I know he is in his autumn years, and have tried to prepare myself and the kids for the day when he's not around.
Our vet is Mary Bennett, who I have known since we were about 5 in Burnie. We seemed to be in the same class every year from that age to when we went to Uni, and even then we spent our first year at the same residential college. We haven't always seen eye to eye, but as we've matured we've rubbed along a lot better. Our kids get on well too, and her husband Simon is a terrific bloke. As it happened we went to their daughter Miranda's pirate party on Sunday. They love organising parties, and they do it very well. They hired a 20m long hall, and had an actual pirate ship in there. It was great. They both talked like pirates for several hours without slipping out of character.
Marcus was hopeless for the first half an hour. He would not join in, and mooched about with his shoulders pushed up around his ears. We just don't know what to do with him at times. I was a fairly shy kid myself, so I understand how he feels, but I wish he would give things a chance a bit more readily. He eventually got into it to the extent that when it was over, and people started drifting away, we had ANOTHER scene because he wanted it to keep going. I would have happily sold him to any passing gypises (or pirates) at that moment. Michael had a great time from go to whoa, in his bouncy-puppy kind of way. I wonder if he too will go through a serious young insect stage like Marcus is.