You've all seen them. The Elizabethan collars so famous for cat and dog operations. That hideous torture device meant to keep your pet away from surgery sites and stitches.
Never have I seen a cat actually "want" to wear one of these. That is, until my own cat Rocco tried one on for size one day.
My husband and I were fortunate to adopt brother and sister cats Rocco and Bella as little kittens. The tiny ragamuffins were found near a motel in the town I work. A kindly veterinarian's office took them in and nursed the flea bitten kitties to health.
Soon after we brought them home, we decided to have them spayed and neutered. Well, Rocco had it pretty easy, after all, he's the male. The surgery for the boy cat is a little easier. Not so for Miss Bella. Stitches ran down her shaved belly and one of the plastic torture devices, the Elizabethan collar was put around her little neck.
My husband and I felt terrible watching the poor kitten trying to eat and drink with the hated collar. One day, my husband decided to give Bella a little break and he loosened and removed the collar so she could enjoy her food. Unfortunately, we placed it back on as soon as her meal was done.
Each day when I returned home from work, I was greeted by the two gray fluffballs at the door. I swear cats come to know the sound of our vehicle's even when they're about a mile away. So on this particular day when I walked in, I was a bit puzzled to see only one cat: Rocco, the male. I called for Bella and heard the sound of mewing from far away. I called again....mew. I walked further into the house calling "Bella!" More meowing, but from where?
As I walked into the living room and looked up the stairs, poor Bella cat was limping down the stairs, half in half out of the stupid collar. Since we'd loosened it, her body was wedged part way, as if she'd tried to climb out of it.
My husband heard this story when he came home from his own job that night. Feeling sorry for the poor kitty, and realizing she'd had enough of wearing the awful device, he removed it from Bella once and for all, throwing it onto the floor of our bedroom into a corner.
The next day I returned home from work and as I opened the door, the sight of two kitties again greeted me. But, what's this?? The Elizabethan collar was back! How?? Why?? Had hubby returned from work feeling a bit guilty and placed it back on little Bella?
Nope. Upon examining the cats, I saw that it was Rocco, not Bella who had the collar on. Apparently the phrase having something to do with curiosity and cats had special meaning for him. The silly boy must have gone over the collar on my bedroom floor and plopped his own head into it. Sorry, Rocco, but you were the butt of jokes for quite a while in our house.
THE REAL ROCCO AND BELLA