Straight Jacket Cat

Sylveser in cat carrier

Sylvester in kitchen

This is Sylvester. He is a man about town–an indoor/outdoor cat. He patrols the neighborhood and protects our house from unwanted visitors. He can hypnotize you with his eyes. Lorin sometimes refers to him as “Bustopher Jones” from Cats.


For such a large animal–he is a Norwegian Forest weighing in at about 25 pounds–he is a gentle soul. Kind of a domestic version of Lambert the Sheepish Lion.


This is a cat bag.

cat bag 2

It is the contraption into which our veterinarian Dr. C and I placed the dignified gentleman in order to examine and medicate him. It can best be described as a feline straight jacket, except that you can run in a straight jacket. Doesn’t the cat in this photograph look happy?


Sylvester had an oozing eye, and he has a tendency to jerk his head and thrash at the most inopportune moment, so it would have been near impossible to treat his eye without this modern-day torture device.

Step 1:  Place the beast inside bag (keep bottom part zippered).
Step 2:  Wrap the head strap around his neck and secure the velcro.
Step 3:  Zip the bag, back to front, while simultaneously pushing beast down so as not to get hair caught in the zipper or allow him to escape.
Step 4: Continue to hold beast–pressing down on his torso or whatever you need to do–to keep him from flailing while inside bag.

Once we had secured his head with the velcro strap and zipped the top of the bag, Dr. C was able to stain his left eye, take a sample of eye goop for a culture, and medicate him with an ointment, but not before he jerked his head several times and punched his front paw forward.

When Dr. C went out to her car to get some rabies vaccine serum and other things, Sylvester punched his front paw again even while I was holding onto him snugly. He is one strong feline. When she returned, she unzipped part of the underside of the bag to gain access to his hind leg, and the first injection was administered. Sylvester screamed as if he were being disemboweled. In truth, he is a bit of a wuss puss. Let’s keep that entre nous, of course.

I purchased said cat bag from Dr. C–a brand new jumbo size one–as I thought it would come in handy in the days to come, and we can use it on all our cats. Sylvester needs to get two ointments in the conjunctival eye twice a day as well as anti-inflammatory and antibiotic tablets two to three times a day. Fortunately for us, he loves pill pockets.


I’ve created an Excel chart showing when and in what dose each medicine must be administered, with spaces to check off when each medication has been dispensed: it makes life much easier. At least for me.

Last night Sylvester tried to hypnotize me into letting him outside, but we are under strict orders from Dr. C to not let him out for at least two weeks. As long as I don’t stare into his good eye, he can’t force me to do things against my will . . . or can he?




7 thoughts on “Straight Jacket Cat

  1. Pill pockets? I never heard of them. We’ve used peanut butter, butter–everything short of heroin, which is hard to get and even harder to figure out the right dose for (to end a sentence with a preposition). Plus I don’t know for a fact that it agrees with cats. Do they really work? The cats don’t eat the pocket off and then spit out the pill?

    Liked by 1 person

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