For the last 15 years, Slim-the-Cat and I have rubbed along just fine. For my part, I've put out food for him twice a day. On his part, he has refused to let me cuddle him and has avoided tracking cat hair and fleas into my house. It was a relationship made in Heaven!
Then Slim got cancer. Then he got attacked by a raccoon. Weighing only around four pounds and looking like Skeletor, I figured it was time to put him to sleep. So I fed him a whole Tylenol with codeine cleverly concealed in some fabulous raw tuna and he ate the whole thing. Nothing. The freaking cat didn't even stagger. That dose would have knocked me out like a light for a week. Hummm. This cat really wants to live.
So then I fed Slim some steak and while he was occupied with that lure, I snuck up behind him, scooped him up, put him in a box and closed the lid. "Slim, I got you now!" No I didn't. Using super-strength that he got from who-knows-where and using his skinny pathetic cancer-ridden raccoon-scratched-up paws, he clawed his way out.
I figured that if anyone wanted to hang onto life that badly, who was I to play God. So I gave Slim-the-Cat a reprieve and a chance to die peacefully in his little postage-stamp-sized backyard domain.
That was four months ago.
Caution: Do not read this next part unless you have a really strong stomach.
Since that time, Slim's ears have rotted off and his nose has rotted off and half of his tail has rotted off and he is all infected and filled with cancer and pus. This is a Hall-of Horrors-looking cat. But underneath all this grossness, he is still the same, sweet Slim-the-Cat. But enough is enough. "Slim, no matter HOW badly you want to hold on to life, you really need to be put out of your misery."
So here is my question: How do I go about doing it? What should I do? And HOW do I get the courage to do this to my old friend? And please please please, while you are down on your knees praying for our brave troops in Iraq and that somehow America will someday have sane people who are legally elected living in the White House, also please pray really hard for Slim-the-Cat.
PS: I just got the following e-mail from "Greg" with the following INTERESTING suggestions (slightly censored, BTW):
"I am horrified by this blog entry," wrote Greg. "Are you really STUPID enough to attempt an at-home, DIY euthanasia? Your poor cat never would've been attacked at all had you been a responsible pet owner & kept him INSIDE where ALL house cats belong. This blog is a sick f*cking reminder that some idiots are TOO F*CKING STOOPID to own so much as a guppy.
"TAKE HIM TO A VET TO BE HUMANELY EUTHANIZED,YOU SICK, SADISTIC MORON," Greg continued. "I have half a notion to report you for animal cruelty, as this would qualify, beyond a doubt. You make me want to puke & never stop. Whata waste of skin you are."
Then Greg added, "PS -- acetaminafin causes MASSIVE feline liver & kidney failure, YOU DUMB c-word."
And here's my sorta lame answer: "Guess what, Greg? Slim WILL NOT come into the house. He won't even let me pick him up. This has been going on now for FIFTEEN YEARS. The cat is a FERAL. Can you say 'FERAL'? That would be like putting that guy who wrote "Walden Pond" in Alcatraz for 15 years. Humph. AND if you are so concerned about Slim, PLEASE stop by and take him to the vet yourself. If you can catch him! Plus I can't afford the $500+ it would take. Vets cost an arm and a leg. But I DO appreciate your input.
Slim-the-Cat's dilemma is a messy situation. It's not as bad as what is going on in Iraq, but still posing a whole bunch painful alternatives. In Iraq, however, there is only one viable alternative -- to bring our brave troops home where they are actually needed to help defend America from all the enemies that have been blythely created by George W. Bush, including terrorism, corporate fascism, global warming and economic distress.