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Poor Alfredo—True Cat Story


Poor Alfredo!!

Please no cards, he can’t read


Yes, this sad-looking cat with the Irish red fur and emerald-green cast was color-coordinated at the vet’s. Boy, was that a terrible night for my husband, Alan, and me. Alan is a lieutenant at the penitentiary and works swing and he didn’t arrive home till 11:00 p.m. Alan always looks for “his” cat when he comes home; and when he discovered Alfredo wasn’t in the house; he went outside to look about. He located Alfredo in our cat shelter in the backyard. (Alfredo had been outside the entire day and this is very unusual for our indoor cat that hates to be away from us and thrives on attention. I had been so busy during the day, I hadn’t given him much thought until Alan started inquiring.)


Alan called me outside where I discovered Alfredo weeping in the shelter … it was an intense, mournful sound that disturbed my heart. I was afraid to move him, noticing what appeared to be an injury to his leg. I knew I had to take him inside so I gingerly placed him in my arms. Sure enough, exposure to the light, affirmed his badly wounded limb. Alan was certain it was broken.

We had to contemplate what to do at that late hour. Alfredo was in such excruciating agony that I decided to look in the yellow pages; and wouldn’t you know, they have 24 hour emergency pet services.


We quickly departed for the animal hospital with Alfredo wailing, producing a wild siren effect. We felt deep empathy for this ultra-loving cat who was not one to complain like Cassidy, our female cat.  


We arrived at the odd-appearing clinic holding a Sci-Fi atmosphere, which left us un-assured that it was really the right place. It just transmitted a Twilight Zone sensation through our beings. The late night hour added to the peculiar environment. We approached the desk and introduced Alfredo with his dangling leg to a very bizarre man; who while diagnosing the situation, kept calling Alfredo, “handsome.”  Our cat was in pain and he just lingered and talked about this remarkable, beautiful cat in very strange tones. Alan was not happy and became very disheartened when he brought out 5 to 6 forms to fill out before anything could be done. Then this vet-assistant wanted to go on and on concerning the inadequacies of the forms. He then rambled on and on about how we should take Alfredo to his regular clinic where he worked during the day so he could administers shots, explaining their life and death imperatives. Alfredo just waited and moaned with our inner groanings.  


I was eventually ushered back with Alfredo to the waiting room, just like they do in a regular human clinic. Alan came in later, extremely upset and gave the sign that he wanted to strangle that man. Alan had never even made this sign toward the worst inmate. I had never seen him do this before! Had Alan became part of the Twilight Zone too?


As we sat, we heard another patron come in and the attendant gave him the same lines, “Hi handsome, oh, what pretty markings,” etc. 


It took forever for the vet to come in. Like the customary, people health care center, you sit in the first waiting room, then they sit you in the patient waiting room, then you wait forever to see the doctor. By this time there was no one else in the clinic. Why was this female vet taking so long with our cat wailing and in such pain?  Alan, more than impatient by now, stated the assistant probably had to wake her up. Well, … I replied, “She must have had to shower, get dressed, and do her make-up and hair too.” They probably had to run a late-night credit check, as well, before she would even speak to us.


When she finally arrived and examined the cat, she informed us it could possibly cost us up to a $1,000, as he probably needed an orthopedic surgeon. Then the dreadful attendant returned taking our sweet cat by the nape of the neck; and he carried him away like a criminal so the vet could splint his leg. Alan was greatly upset by then and disgustingly asked, “What is he doing to MY cat?!!” I couldn’t believe my ears; it wasn’t that many years ago when Alan didn’t even like cats and he felt dogs’ drool ruled. Who was this man I was sitting next to?!! 


Now if this had been Cassidy, we would certainly understand this type of handling. She would have attacked this man like a mad-dog—we should have brought her along! Once, I actually took Cassidy to a vet, when I came to retrieve her, the vet acted and appeared as if she had gone through some type of war.  Wow, was she disheveled and upset. She couldn’t believe it when I simply took Cassidy into my arms.  She kept saying she should be caged and went over all the problems she caused. She seemed to think Cassidy should never come in contact with human beings. Cassidy has been referred to as the “bad cat” many a time, but I was still surprised by this behavior. I think the vet thought I had gone on a wild jungle safari and captured her and brought her in to test her veterinarian capability levels. Our son, Nate, was with me and on the way home, we laughed and laughed and went over and over the vet’s lack of composure. I guess we should have prayed for her … I believe I did.


I’d better return us to poor, suffering Alfredo; I’ve swerved over the yellow line enough.  


Following the splinting, the vet sent us off in search of a surgeon after charging us $270. She seemed to think if we didn’t go with a surgeon, he should be put down. We were broken, we had no thousand dollars. We loved our cat and to think of doing this was heart-wrenching. We decided we could at least have a surgeon evaluate him. This was Saturday night and tomorrow was Sunday, and she firmly stated, “The sooner the better.” 


He was in such immense pain, we inquired what we could immediately do. She informed us the Humane Society had an orthopedic surgeon who was present on Sunday.


We arrived home at 3:00 in the morning, with our concerned sons, Nate and Josh, waiting for us as we drove in. All night Alfredo wept in pain. I wept too as things seemed so bleak and hopeless. Alan was very depressed as well. Fortunately, we were given a couple of medications and one assisted some with Alfredo’s pain. We prayed this night for a solution so Alfredo could go on living.


Alan and I went to the Humane Society, following church. Alfredo enjoys a children’s CD, which contains a couple of hymns; this kept him calm during the ride. At the Humane Society, the staff acted normal and treated us normal. Wow, it was wonderful! We felt we had finally left the Twilight Zone of wacky people. They had us talk to the vet who simply told us our options, and one was—he could be re-splinted as the current splint was too tight. Imagine that! He stated most cat breaks heal themselves. He explained surgery was the best option, but the leg would mend and the surgery was far less than quoted by the previous vet. He slightly elaborated by telling us how you could place a broken cat leg in a room, parts separated, and they would find each other and heal.  What a relief! No thousand dollars on top of what we had already spent. God made cat legs to mend easily and no wonder!


We didn’t understand why the first vet didn’t inform us of this fact, and why we had to go elsewhere. Why didn’t she take an X-ray and provide other options? She certainly seemed totally unknowledgeable after speaking with the Humane Society—you even need a second opinion with animals!


We have been praying and Alfredo is so much better. He is not wearing a splint, but seems to be healing fine. He is even back to chasing Cassidy.


Have a great day in Christ our Creator, Colossians chapter 1, who cares for even the tiny sparrows and family cats.   




Cassidy video with my sons:  She loves only me!

Cassidy dog terrorizer:


Val Lee   

September 23, 2008 Posted by | Alfredo, Alfredo and Cassidy, Alfredo the Cat, Cat Story, Humane Society, Poor Alfredo, True Story, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 3 Comments