The good thing is, Kelly is fine now.
Me, not so sure.
I lost Kelly for an hour this afternoon. Today, instead of enjoying an afternoon nap on my bed, she headed to the basement after breakfast. It was a little warm and it’s cooler down there, and she always liked to spend some time down there before, so with her new outlook on life I followed her, saw where she went, and got to work for the day.
In the early afternoon I got her lunch ready and went down to the basement to get her.
But she was not where I had seen her, and she was…nowhere to be found. Absolutely nowhere. I heated up her little raw meal just a bit so it smelled really good, I got a bag of treats, a can of treats, flashlights and whatnot and spent the better part of an hour moving everything in my basement then all over the house looking for her. Increasingly panicked because with all the noise all six of us were making she’d normally at least wake up and meow when I called her name. Nothing. I even went outside in case she had slipped out with me while I had gone out to water plants.
I’d been concerned that she didn’t seem to be responding as usual when I talked to her, and that’s been over the course of months, but she couldn’t be totally deaf that fast! I mean, I was banging on the washer and dryer, moving shelves, knocking things down in my haste, she had to hear. I also remembered she’d been sleeping that really deep totally relaxed sleep I’ve only seen in my most senior cats and if she was out of range, she could be completely out…
When one of my cats is missing, or anything else that identifies with me for that matter such as glasses or a book, I usually have a sense of where in the house the cat or object is, at least what room it’s in, and I always find it there. I was convinced, though, that Kelly had either found a hole in the house no one else had found in 22 years, or something had fallen on her. I remembered a noise I’d heard hours earlier, a little thud, and then I remembered the lights had flickered…I was sure she was injured or…worse.
Eventually, the other cats were getting organized. It’s always frustrating because I know when one of the cats can’t be found, the remaining ones know where that cat is. Mewsette kept sitting on the washer, dryer and chest freezer. Mr. Sunshine kept prowling around that area of the basement, and Jelly Bean sat down and stared along the wall beside the freezer. I had looked there before, but we all stood still and heard a tiny little scratch noise.
I remembered that years ago my little former feral Moses used to crawl inside of the back of the freezer. There’s nothing dangerous, just a few covered connections and basically an air space so that heat can escape the bottom of the freezer; that was the draw for her, plus she felt safe.
But it was in the corner of the basement with the other two appliances next to it and my spare refrigerator nearly blocking the front of it.
I ran and found an old mirror, ran a cord through the hanger, got up on the freezer and lowered the mirror behind it. Couldn’t see a thing. But the way Bean and Mewsette were acting I knew we were on to something, I just wasn’t sure if I was ready for what it might be.
I moved everything a little bit, pulled the freezer out and lowered the mirror once again, shining my flashlight down in that direction to at least get some reflection in there.
Eyes! Round glowing eyes! And they were moving! Kelly was in there and she was alive! And she was talking!
Slowly she made her way out and looked up at me, on my knees on the lid of the chest freezer. I can’t say if she was confused generally or confused by me, but either way she walked behind the other appliances and came out from under the washtub. I picked her up and gently, not to frighten her, hugged and kissed her and talked non-stop to her. Took her picture, then took her upstairs to get her lunch from the refrigerator, then to the bathroom so she could eat in peace, though she had to put up with lots of pets from me!
She spent a while in there while I blocked the back of the freezer, and when I let her out she initially headed for the stairs, then ran into my room as if she’d just remembered it was open to her. The bed was stripped, and if she had not wanted to sleep on the mattress cover before it didn’t seem to bother her now!
All’s well that ends well in this case, but I’m still a little concerned about her generally. I know they are due for their yearly exam, at 18 Kelly needs a closer look.
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