sareini: "Little one, I would like to see anyone - prophet, king or god - persuade 1000 cats to do anything at the same time." (1000 cats)
It's been a busy day for me so far. First off I was up early so I could go to my local PetsAtHome for cat food, cat litter and other cat sundries. PetsAthome also has a selection of small mammals for people to buy as pets - rabbits, guinea pigs, rats, degus and of course, hamsters and gerbils - so I always go and say hello to all of them whenever I'm there as well.

Personally, I'd never even heard of degus before I first saw them, but now I think that, if I didn't have cats, I'd totally have a couple of degus. (Sadly I don't have my niece's talent for getting cats and other small furry animals get along; she might have managed it with her cat and her rabbits - the cat now herds the rabbits and guards them in the outdoor hutch whenever there's another cat about - but my cats, especially Lily, would just think I'd bought them free range organic food.) They look like someone crossed a rat with a chinchilla, which makes some sense when you read the background on the Wiki page, they're very social, and they're very active and clever. Every time I see them they're either all in a big cuddle puddle in their enclosure, or running on the exercise wheel in pairs. I've begun to suspect as well that, because they're relatively new in the world of having pets, people aren't getting them as much as they get rabbits or guinea pigs or the usuals, because the last two or three times I've visited them, one or two of them has run to the glass and peered out at me, almost as if they now recognise my indigo-haired self. I'm probably just imagining it, or putting more weight on behaviour than is needed. But they're still awesome animals.

While I was there I also went looking in the dog treats section. Just under a month or so ago, my brother got himself a new dog, a 14-month-old Rottweiler named Rogue. Provided all goes well I shall be visiting my brother and my niece next weekend (for my niece's birthday) and I wanted to get Rogue a treat the same as I used to do with their other dogs in the past. I was looking primarily for something like a pig's ear - which I got - but the range of stuff you can get for dogs now is astounding. Doggy yogurt (and why there's not a cat version of that I do not know). Stag antlers infused with spearmint oil for chewing. Pig trotters that are labelled as "Serrano ham". And dog beer. It's chicken-flavoured and 0% alcohol, but still - dog beer. So I had to get a bottle of that as well, so Rogue and my brother can have a lads' night in on the sofa together.

An hour or so after getting back from the pet store, I was off out again, this time with Lily for her fortnightly vet checkup. This time I managed to get her while she was sunning herself in the bathroom, so there was no sofa-wrestling involved. While at the vet's we saw an aging chocolate lab, a three legged dog, a friendly bull terrier who wanted to sit in my lap, and a big dog who looked like a one-colour Doberman with a buzzcut. He was pretty excitable but his owner was doing a good job of keeping him under control... till the Jack Russell came in.

This dog was trouble. Not even a minute after he came in, he managed to slip his lead and ran off to greet other dogs. Perhaps thankfully, he ran to the aging lab and the three-legged dog, who were happy to greet him, but after that, when he'd been re-collared and sat down, he started to bark. And bark. And bark. I know Jack Russells are known for their energy, but holy crap he just would not stop. And after a few minutes the other dogs started to get agitated and join in - or in the case of the buzzcut Doberman, jump around the place and try to twist free of his harness. It got so loud we couldn't hear names being called and - eventually - the Jack Russell and his owners were asked to wait outside in the hopes he would calm down. (It didn't work. You could still hear him barking through the window, but at least we could hear other things now as well.) Poor Lily tried to bury herself under her security blanket through all of this.

After all, that, her appointment was a breeze. Liver feels great, all other signs great - eating like a champ, playing with Callie, affectionate and only one vomiting incident - so we're giving her another two weeks and then we're going to try taking her off the antibiotics to see if we've beaten it entirely. Lily will not be happy with yet another visit, but right now she's been mollified with a tuna loin (and her sister's half as well; poor Callie needs to learn to eat quicker or start hiding her food) and has gone back to her sunbathing.

Me, I'm bloody shattered.

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