It was bound to happen sooner or later. After all, this is country life we're living. But in retrospect, maybe we shouldn't have named our beloved black cat with the gigantic bushy tail after a skunk. It has become the pet owner's kiss of death!
It all started last Wednesday night. Shucks and I came home from our usual weekly volleyball league when, about ¼ mile away from our house, we smelled skunk. As we neared the house, the smell got stronger.
"Wow, that must have been some skunk spray!" I made the brilliant observation.
"Yeah…some poor animal really got it." My equally brilliant husband replied.
Pulling into our driveway, it seemed as if the skunk smell was on our car. The fumes made our eyes water the second we opened the door.
"Dang! We must have run over the skunk or something. Up close it smells like onions and burning rubber!"
Running into the garage, I almost let my cat, "Morty," into the house. Morty is black and white and looks like a penguin with black freckles on his face. He is adorable. But there was nothing adorable about him now. His face and body were covered with bright yellow skunk perfume!
We had no choice. It was back in the car, down to Wal-Mart to buy a gallon of tomato juice and a couple gas masks (for us).
Have you ever tried to wrestle a cat into a vat of tomato juice? By the time we were done with Morty's tomato juice bath and then two clean water baths, we all looked like we'd been taking a shower with Norman Bates (red and wet—ha ha)!
To make matters worse, it was cold out that night and Morty WAS NOT coming into the house…no way! We were forced to get out the blow dryer and dry him out. Morty, although fluffy and smelling lot better (but clearly not even close to normal), was not happy.
I discovered a strange phenomenon that night when we went into the house for the night. Even though it is winter, and the house is closed up, getting skunk spray that close to your house somehow permeates everything. Our house reeked skunk so strongly, we couldn't hardly sleep that night. I thought everything was going to be ruined.
The next day we happened to be going out of town for four days, so we had to leave Morty outside. This is very hard to do when you worry about the safety of your pets, especially when neighbor dogs have killed your cats before. And we didn't want him out alone, so we put our other cat, Pepe Le Pew (named after the skunk, no less) out with him. Our cats are big babies about cold and they did not want to be forced outside for four days. But what choice did we have?
Apparently, the skunk (or family of skunks) has taken up residence with us in our country spread, because when we got home, Pepe had also been the recipient of new perfume. Back to Wal-Mart for more tomato juice…
Since then, our house has lost the skunk smell, but our cats still linger on in mild skunk cologne. They have been allowed back into the house again, much to their great relief.
And of course, I knew there had to be a spiritual lesson in all of this, and there is. As much as my cats HATE water and baths, I was doing them a great favor when I made them suffer through tomato juice, soap and water, and hair dryers. There are many times God's holding us down in that terrible place too, but it is absolutely necessary to get the stink off of us so we can live with ourselves (and Him) again. Think about it.