The Tail of Arnold the Circus Cat

Before we begin, I should give some background info on my cat (the play-on-words in the title will become clear then)

A few years ago, whilst living in Ashford, my parents decided that they wanted another cat (I never understood why anyone would want A cat, let alone MORE THAN ONE cat!!) but anyway, we found a local cat-dispenser – friend of a friend as I recall – who provided us with a ball of ginger fluff with a bunch of razorblades at its extremities.

My mother bought into the whole “you only get ginger toms, not ginger females” wives tale so decided to change her name from Chloe (that would be a hint for me, cat IS female) to Arnold – Mother had a ginger friend called something Arnold when she was younger; and so the adventure begins: Female, Ginger Cat called Arnold… she has no chance…

The next chapter in Arnold’s life is a pretty dark one. One day we discovered that Arny wasn’t sitting properly, she had her backside up against the back of the sofa, and her bright RED tail was only being held in place by the cushion; in other words, Arny was not controlling it. The tail was bright red, where she had licked all the fur off it and left a raw, bald tail. (This looked quite freaky, as I’m sure you can imagine). We dragged the poor kitten – at this point I still had some respect and compassion for the cat – down to the vet to see what he thought.

Dr Doolittle [I don’t think that was his – or indeed her – real name] could not figure out what had happened to poor Arny but could only tell us that the tail had ‘died’ so (s)he suggested amputating the tail. The reasoning was this: if the tail had been shut in a door, there would be some ‘pinch’ marks either side of it; if the cat had been run over, the tail would be flat and Arny would have damaged claws, so this was also ruled out! So anyway, the tail came off…

So now we have a Female, Ginger, Tailless Cat called Arnold – which is obviously a boys name…

A few years later, we decided to leave Ashford (or Ashwitz as my father calls it!) and head for a very expensive bit of real estate, it was too far to bring Arny, because by this time the teasing from the other cats had driven her a little loopy, so we sent her off to stay in a retirement home… in the form of Grandma Grant’s beach house.

After a couple of years eating pilchards and salmon – I think my grandmother felt sorry for Poor Circus Arny – she completely forgot who we were, whenever we visited she would just hide or ignore us. So that was destined to be the end of our relationship… Until…

After us being away from Ashford for 7 years, Grandma and Grandpa Grant decided to leave their home and live in a flat, without garden, so was unsuitable for Arny. Mother looked quite chuffed that we were “getting Arny back” but I was dreading it!

So now Arny lives with us again, she consumes about 50p worth of food per day, so is not too expensive to keep; then you must take into account that leaving the Utility Room’s window open all day and all night (so that she can make toilet etc – pay attention, this is the whole point of the story) adds to the fuel bill – not to mention the potential security risk.

So yes, the cat-maintenance is beginning to add up.

You can tell from the date of this entry that the UK is beginning to get cold again, so not only is the utility room (and therefore whole ground floor of my home) very cold but it means that Arnold does not particularly want to go outside to urinate. Now Arnold, being a cat and still, despite being who she is, very proud will not just urinate anywhere, she has three choice spots:

  1. The bathroom mat – not a bad attempt Arny
  2. The lavatory floor – getting closer sweetheart
  3. MY BEDROOM FLOOR – bad cat, naughty Arny

Arny’s spot of choice in my room is just by one of my book cases, this makes me angry because she has risked, on more than one occasion, ruining some relatively old programming manuals (not that I have ever read or am I ever likely to read them). Arnold’s urinary antics reached almost comedic proportions recently, so now we get to the whole point of the story…

Picture the scene, it’s 8:45am on a Monday, I’m a little hungover and I’m still in bed; the door is a little open… I realise that Mr Oliver will be here to collect me for work (I do a little work on Mondays) in five minutes, so I dive out of bed, chuck on some clothes from my floor-drobe and head downstairs to make my lunch. After gathering together some culinary delights I can’t find my lunchbox… hurry up Sebastian, you have no time for this… so I welly it upstairs to find my spare, which I keep on my bookcase in my room… DANGER DANGER DANGER!!!

I get to my lunchbox and discover it’s wet?? What? Why? A little sniff confirms my worst fear, the cat had urinated ON my lunchbox! Thank god the lid was on! Quickly head to the bathroom to wash the lunchbox – not that I was going to use it, I just couldn’t leave it in that state – and Mr Oliver turns up, the lunchbox will have to wait.

A couple of days later, I was at home for the day and I remembered that I had left the lunchbox where I had cleaned it, so I fetched it with a view to putting it through the dishwasher a few times. Hold on, the lunchbox is heavy, I didn’t leave a Satsuma in there did I? Great, mouldy Satsuma + cat urine, this poor lunchbox!

Off comes the lid and (I’m sure) my face turns green… the stench is horrific, but there’s no Satsuma. There is a puddle of Urine… that’s right Arny had urinated INSIDE my lunchbox. Disbelief turns to horror turns back to disbelief… all these feelings give way to faint nausea, I have to sit down.

How on earth did she manage to pee inside my lunchbox, the lid was only open the smallest amount and the surrounding area wasn’t particularly soaked? I am still in awe now, and no matter how many times I relay this story it doesn’t lessen the pain I still feel when looking at my spare lunchbox.

So there we go, I have a Female, Ginger, Tailless Cat called Arnold who Urinates Inside Closed Lunchboxes. I will take offers above £500 before putting her on eBay. You will get a certificate of authenticity but there are no garauntees that she will perform her stunts for you. Your statutory rights are not affected.

We have had offers (from Luke’s friends) to bag the cat and drown her, or to put the bag over the exhaust of their cars, but I think she’s so potentially valuable!! Any thoughts or bids – leave me a comment!

2 thoughts on “The Tail of Arnold the Circus Cat

  1. Me says

    “…the teasing from the other cat’s had driven her a little loopy…”

    Oh Sebastian. Tut tut.

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