Sunday, May 22, 2022 | Shawwal 20, 1443 H
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33°C / 33°C

Winter in Kitzania

This winter was a busy one in Kitzania. When the weather started getting cooler, it was time to start our Winter in Kitzania yearly ritual that both humans and cats looked forward to: taking out warm blankets, cushions and spreading them all over the garden.

Due to cyclone Shaheen’s rain this year, the top shelves on which the cats slept were rotted. These were replaced with huge plastic chopping boards as suggested by Mom and executed by Sham the cleaner. Surprisingly, they fitted well – despite my initial doubts- and we placed tubs stuffed with blankets on top of them. Although the job sounds easy yet it’s not, being constantly surrounded by the Kitzanians not only supervising our work, but even trying out different tubs and blankets to see which one they like best, not to mention the few who actually mark their chosen territories – with our arms and legs being caught in the delightfully warm stinky spray.

This yearly ritual also attracts vising cats who choose to spend the night in the warmth of Kitzania’s blankets. A couple of weeks back, we had a dog raid that killed one of our cats and injured the other badly. The funny thing is that none of the two cats were staying with us that Friday early morning.

Both were in different neighbours’ houses that happened to have their main gates wide open. The pack came to the first house- our next-door neighbour’s- and upon hearing their barking and ruckus I woke up and went straight to the balcony to check. I started clapping and shushing which made them leave the house – and thus the cat they were chasing- and go immediately to the other house across the road, where they caught and killed another cat while I stood helplessly wondering and praying that it’s not one of my own.

In the early morning, I went looking for the body to find it dumped in the wadi. It was Mama Cat who came regularly to eat in Kitzania and stayed with the neighbours. The injured cat from the first house was none other than our five-year-old Rumana who came two days later with two holes on her thighs – where the dogs had grasped and tried pulling her if it wasn’t for my last-minute interference. I managed to lock her in the bathroom and take a closer look at the bite wounds. Needless to say, they were horrible and filled with maggots. The next day, I took her to the vet where they took an x-ray to check for broken bones and any internal injuries. Luckily, she didn’t sustain any which meant that all she had were flesh wounds.

Rumana’s wounds were cleaned and sutured within a week. She was ready to come home where she stayed indoors for a week before letting her out. Now she’s back to her usual self, patrolling the garden and making sure that visiting cats are kicked out after eight. As for now, I’m busy catching Kitzanians for their annual vaccine, which is a challenging task in planning and executing. Also, I feel sorry for the vets who’d have to deal with the few nasty ones that turn into mythical creatures hissing and attacking.

So far, I managed to vaccinate a few which is not too bad. One sad news to end this article with is of the loss of Sharah, the kitten I found on the 18th of November street in July. She simply disappeared, which is heart-breaking yet inevitable when keeping outdoor cats. From all of us in Kitzania, we wish you a happy new year!

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