They say that cats have nine lives. Our newest addition, Essy, has used up one of her lives already. When she recently came into our household as a stray, she was not happy to be lifted off the floor for some close cuddling. I could pet her under her silky chin while she languished on the floor, and rub my fingers against her head, listening to her loud purr. But she was adamant about one thing. Do not touch her backside. I saw a little sore above her tail but nothing that would warrant any problem. Later the first week, her health declined. She threw up, was listless and eventually refused to eat, even screaming at us when we dared to even look at her. One morning while trying to figure out why her happy demeanor had changed I noticed a huge abscess on her back. What? She was immediately rushed to the vet. Pine Forest Animal Clinic Vet, Dr. Perrett, suggested that she had been in a cat fight. I thought about the beautiful red fox in the nearby woods. Red foxes are known cat eaters, so Wikipedia says on the Internet. Or maybe she had a run in with a stray dog, Armadillo or opossum. As you can see from the picture, Essy must have been in a world of pain. The vet cautioned that it would take months of care for this little cat to heal, IF she made it through at all. Once a day I irrigate the worst of the wound with a Peroxide Flush followed by twice a day applications of Trypzyme. One thing became apparent as soon as Essy woke from the anesthesia. She was starved. While the vet said to only feed her small doses of food the first day after her suturing and cleaning operation, the little cat was not having any of that nonsense. As soon as she was released from her crate she ate everything put down on the floor and drank a lot of water. This has continued to be normal for her. When she is eventually spayed she could be another Morris, tipping the scales above what is normal. All I know is that the vet was right. Cats are very resilient and her expected recovery will be miraculous. For some reason we have been directed to have her in our lives and therefore are responsible for her happiness. What else do “they” say? Dogs have masters. Cats have servants. In return for a chance to touch her silky throat and listen to her content purring, I think that is a pretty good deal. I’ll continue giving progress reports as the months pass.