It was Husband’s second day of work at his new job. He had just finished saying goodbye to us. The boys and I were still at the table finishing up our breakfast when Delilah came in the doggy door. “Came in” is too mild a description, she burst through in a flash of fuzzed up black fur. She was in a full on run. She made two laps around our house, fur extended with that crazy-in-the-eyes look cats sometimes get. We laughed over that crazy Delilah cat, Husband went out the door to work, and we went back to eating. Delilah leapt up into her cat tower but moments later was back down and running again.
Something was wrong. I thought that a raccoon or stray cat had scared her. She was spooked. I followed her and was able to scooped her up when she took a moment to pause. I put her in my lap and brushed her fur with my hand. Something sharp, shocking. A feeling like bacon grease splattering or a droplet of hot water splashing while draining pasta, burned on my hand. I looked down, Delilah stayed on my lap long enough for me to see it wiggling, burrowing deeper into her fur. A yellow and black hornet.
I ran after her, grabbing a baby wipe from the pack that will forever be on our kitchen counter as long as there are sticky kid hands in our house. I must have been forming a plan as I ran and somehow it involved a baby wipe. I caught up to her in the t.v. room and pinned her to the floor. There is nothing quite like the experience of reaching your bare fingers into a pissed off cat’s fur, knowing you are trying to grab an angry hornet.
I located the hornet with my fingers then put the baby wipe over it and tried to squeeze. Delilah howled and scratched. She writhed and somewhere in the process I learned that her breakaway safety collar works as I was left holding an open collar. I grabbed a handful of angry cat and tried again. She bit. I persisted. After what seemed like an epic battle I stepped away, the victor. Clutched in my fist, the baby wipe and a dead hornet. Blood dripped from my hand in two places, the hornet sting was throbbing, and the left knee of my pants were ripped. I must have looked crazed.
Delilah wanted nothing to do with me after that. She ignored my peace offering of cat treats and did not want to be touched. During the time I was cleaning and bandaging my wounds, she left the house. It was then that I started to worry about her. I called the vet and was told to look for signs of a reaction: swelling, vomiting, lethargy. They gave me the correct dosage of Benadryl for a cat and told me to monitor her. I searched in the backyard. I searched in the front yard. The boys and I searched the house. She did not want to be found. I have learned that a cat who does not want to be found will not be found.
While we were looking and not finding, she crept back into our house and hid in Carter’s closet. We found her there several hours later looking as fine as could be. A day later she is allowing me to pet her and feed her snacks and seems to have forgiven me completely. She is currently convalescing in the sun but I know it is a farce for actually she is fully alert in her lounging, just three feet from the bottom of the birdfeeders.
Either I have forgotten how difficult and entertaining it is to have a cat or Delilah is just a little bit extra of a cat and will give us the ride of our lives. At least it makes for good blogging material because there is no way I could make this stuff up on my own.
Have you ever picked a mad hornet off the back of a pissed off cat? I have.