July 12, 2008
First, I want to thank everyone for their comments on the last entry. Hearing others’ experiences and opinions (even the contrary ones) really does help. To be honest, I was afraid to write about what is quite a personal and somewhat sensitive decision for us. You just never know what you’re going to get on this here Internet, ya know?
So today, I think we’ve come to a final decision. We are going to be finding a new home for the kitties.
We spent from 9am this morning until about 4pm in the basement, ripping out the carpet, cleaning up the floor, nearly gagging from the pee smell, getting increasingly angry and frustrated at how much they’ve destroyed things down there. We have worked so hard making improvements throughout our house, and they’ve done nothing but undo them.
It started before we even had a baby, so I’m not even sure we can ‘blame it’ on that. (And someone asked about them going to the vet recently- they were both there last fall, well after the peeing started, and they are both perfectly healthy. It’s purely a behavioral thing.) In the last year, I have tried all the sprays and concoctions I could find: stuff from the pet store, homemade mixtures of vinegar and water, even mothballs which I read were supposed to work. Nothing did- they knew they had peed there before, so they just kept doing it.
It was soooo much worse down there than we knew. The carpet is (WAS!) dark brown, so we couldn’t see the pee. We could just smell it. When Dan brought out the first piece of carpet out from the back corner of the room- the corner where we could smell it the strongest- my jaw dropped. There were HUGE stains on the underside of the carpet and the smell was just… I can’t even explain it. Nearly suffocating. Very very gross. At one point Dan was so mad, HE WASN’T EVEN YELLING. He was just calmly repeating, I can’t believe we had this in our HOUSE. I can’t believe we had people over to house with THIS IN IT. THIS IS SO DISGUSTING AND WRONG. And you know what? He’s right.
It was a long and tiring day. My mom came over to watch Maggie while we worked, so we used the opportunity to not only clear out the basement, but clean out and organize the garage as well. We’re still trying to make room for all of Maggie’s old baby things (her swing, her exersaucer, etc) that we need to keep for Future Baby #2, whenever that is. So we alternated between Dan ripping up the carpet while I was out in the garage, and then I’d come in and scrub the concrete floor with a bleach solution while he went out the to garage, etc etc throughout the day until we were both completely and totally exhausted.
But it’s done. And the basement smells infinitely better, even though the floor is gross-looking concrete at the moment. The plan is to get new carpet installed, but not until we resolve the Cat Issue. I am not spending $1000 to carpet the floor and have them do it all over again. I might just lose it.
I am sad. I wish so much that my kitties weren’t doing this. All of the other annoyances we complain about- the stepping on our heads at 3am, the stealing of our food when we’re not looking, the constant need for attention- those are not the reasons we are giving them up. Those we can deal with. Those are just cats being cats. But the peeing? That is just not something I am willing to put up with. I am so sorry, Kitties. I really really am.