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Random Round-up

Ben is in a cone, and grumpy. We had a flea problem for awhile--it's been a horrible year for fleas here in North Carolina, the vets are grumbling about it every time I go in--and while it's mostly under control, thanks to the miracle of modern medicine, Ben tends to yank his hair out when he's under stress, and denuded a patch of his back as a response to the flea dermatitis thing. Since he's been losing weight--combination of more exercise, not being constantly overfed, and the kitty herpes flare-up*--he can actually REACH the patch on his back with his tongue now, and managed to lick it raw.

Hence, the cone.

He is not pleased. 

He is deeply not pleased. It constricts his whiskers, and the beagle is totally laughing at him. He will allow some petting, but as soon as he feels you're patronizing him, he will growl at you. Ben, much as I love him, is a bully by nature, and being unable to bully the other members of the household has him completely off kilter.**

Meanwhile, Thanksgiving prep proceeds apace. Library is finally done--just needs another chair in it.

And I woke up this morning to Kevin saying "Oh lord. You're in the Devil's Panties." Heh heh heh...

In other news, Kevin and I frequently joke about the Stages of Intimacy--y'know, when you're comfortable farting in front of the other person, when you're willing to break into the bathroom while they're using it, at what point you let them drive your car, that horrific moment when you get a zit in a place you cannot reach.... He's written an amusing column on some of those stages.

And I should probably get some Real Work done, and write a little Dragonbreath this morning...

*Kevin, in a further sign of awesomeness, took to hand-feeding him, since Ben's not at all food-aggressive and wouldn't push past the other cats. Greater love hath no man than will kneel patiently on the floor while an enormous tabby snarfs and drools over his hand.

**He cannot bully the border collie, who is simply too large and too patient, or Kevin, who has too much experience with irritable cats. This puzzles Ben greatly.

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I once had a cat with really sensitive skin, who apparently had a bad reaction to the flea drops we put on the back of his neck. We misplaced the location of the drops a bit when we put them on, and he was just barely able to reach the spot and lick it raw. We tried putting a cone on him but he was just completely miserable with it, and thinking out loud, I said "You know, he has to turn his head so sharply to reach the spot, an extra-wide regular collar would probably work just as well." My husband-at-the-time got the "Aha!" look, ran upstairs and came down with one of the bondage handcuffs--about 2 1/2 inches wide, metal lined with leather, closes with a loop-and-mini-padlock setup. He put it on the cat, clicked the lock, and presto, we had Dot the Bondage Kitty in his posture collar. It kept him from reaching the spot, but he was still able to eat and move around normally until the scab healed up and the fur grew back, and it was freakin' hilarious to look at him until it did.

This gave me the giggles. I want to see pictures of the bondage kitty!

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