22 April 2010

Callie the collie

The focus has been off Callie for a while, and on Bertie. Bertie the brawler, I should call him. Cats really are wild animals — even a cat as affectionate and intelligent as Bertie. Or maybe it's just tomcats.

Meanwhile, Callie is just sweet. Even when she sees Bertie and gets all excited, barking and whimpering, she is just that — excited. Wanting to play. Have a game of chase. She isn't aggressive or really fierce about it.

Callie the collie

Bertie the brawler is much more ferocious, hissing and taking wide swipes with his paw at Callie's face, claws extended. He hasn't scored a direct hit yet, I'm glad to say.

Enjoying an afternoon walk

But direct hits there have been — on Bertie. Yesterday started off normally enough. I took a bowl of cat food down to the garage and there he was, purring and rubbing against my legs. Being a French cat, he eats packets of food called Marinades (pronounce it with a French accent, s'il vous plaît) — today it was chicken in a brown sauce, tomorrow it will be duck.

Callie soaking up the sun

Then I opened the garage window so that Bertie could come and go as he pleased during the day. That was that.

At noontime, I went down to the garage to see if he was there. He was, and he had a big bleeding wound on the top of his head. He was in a daze, I could tell. He was sitting in the window, as if surprised to have actually arrived at his new home again after his brawling or mauling.

Duck en sauce for the cat

I went and got a clean cloth, wet it with warm water, and bathed the wound as best I could. Walt came downstairs to hold Bertie and I spritzed some Bactine on his head. He didn't like that, but he didn't scratch. He spent much of the afternoon hiding among the boxes and odd pieces of furniture we have stored in the garage right now.

By evening, he was back up on his soft bed (which he soiled, but not badly, twice — he probably lacked the energy or was too confused to go to the litter box). He was quiet. I left him closed in all afternoon and evening.

Here's a plum tree that blew down in the February wind storm.
Some men came by with a tractor, set the tree
upright, and propped it up with posts.

This morning he was up and around, and obviously pleased to see me when I took his bowl of poulet down to him. His wound still looks oozy, so we'll have to go try to clean it up again this morning, and disinfect it. There's no way to know whether it was a brawl with another cat, or an attack by some other creature, that laid him low.


  1. Poor Bertie! Don't you think you should go and see a vet? Could it be the ferocious donkey you posted about a while ago who did this to him?

    P.S. Callie looks so sad in the first photo. Is she feeling sorry for herself or for her new-found friend?

  2. that bertie is always getting head wounds.....they can lick themselves and hence clean wounds everywhere but on their heads, obviously.....poor guy

  3. Oh oh! Sounds like Bertie needs to visit the vet and get his little coucounettes snipped. Hope his wound heals well.
    Callie is an adorable dog and deserves duck in sauce too.

  4. I hope Bertie will be okay. My Duffy the Dog would love to "play" with a cat, but I'm not sure she knows what she's in for.

  5. Thanks for the photos of Callie, she is such a sweet pup. I too was wondering if Bertie had been "sipped". If he hasn't he probably should be for his own health and safety.


  6. Too bad I can't type!

    "snipped" not "sipped" :)


  7. Bertie has been opéré, as they say. He shouldn't be brawling — but then we don't know what happened to him. This afternoon he was very patient as I bathed his wound again and applied some more Bactine. This afternoon Bertie spent a couple of hours up in the living room with Walt while I was out playing with and then walking the dog.

  8. It would appear he has definitely adjusted to his new surroundings.

  9. These are beautiful photos of Callie. She is such a gentle and loveable dog.

  10. Following the stories and photos of both Callie and Bertie is such fun:) I hope poor Bertie heals well. There aren't any weird people around the vineyards, are there? Some people have some strange ideas about black cats and feel justified in hurting them :((

  11. I agree with the others about cats keeping wounds on other areas of their bodies clean, but not head wounds. You might want to take him to the vet if the wound keeps looking nasty. Callie looks incredibly sweet in the photos.

  12. Judy, I hope you are wrong about the neighbors. But an attack by a human is possible. New neighbors three houses down keep chickens in their back yard. They are people we don't know. I also know that another neighbor isn't fond of cats, and I know people here are pretty superstitious about many things in nature.

    I've opened the window so Bertie can go outside again today. Maybe that is a mistake...

  13. During my walk with Callie, I saw Bertie wandering down the road. I put Callie in and went and called the cat. He came right to me, so I picked him up and brought him back inside. For his own protection. It can't hurt to keep him in for another couple of days.


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