So this weekend is a certain cat’s birthday so what else can I say but Happy Birthday Stevie Mouse! This blog looks at the highs and the lows of our life with young Stevie.
Finding Stevie Mouse
It was June 2015 when I found a small four week old kitten drowning in a puddle after a thunderstorm. When I picked the kitten up its eyes were ulcerated and in a dreadful state. I brought the kitten in to die in peace in the warm. But it rallied!
The First Visit To The Veterinary Clinic
A swift trip to the veterinary clinic later and a diagnosis of Feline Herpes Virus later, we were armed with pills, two lots of eye ointment and the advice that the kitten was unlikely to survive and would be blind if it did. At this stage the vet thought the kitten was a boy, (though I had thought she was a girl) and I called him Stevie after Stevie Wonder.
A Real Roller Coaster
Stevie rallied but then took a horrible dive and spent several days in an incubator being cared for by the vet. His body temperature would not come up so he came home and had to be kept in a cage (Mouse Central) with an infra-red lamp on him at all times.
Bearing in mind we were now in the height of the Italian summer. I have never been so uncomfortable in my life, sitting next to Mouse Central so I could keep an eye on Stevie (now Stevie Mouse) but with really high temperatures outside plus a heat lamp!
I think that counts as dedication. But Stevie Mouse is gorgeous and worth every moment of discomfort.
Stevie Mouse Made It!
Well there were quite a few crashes along the way with panic trips to the vets but amazingly Stevie Mouse survived. And turned out to be a little girl, as I had thought all along.
By now of course Stevie Mouse was adored by all of us including our dog Barnie who would guard her while she slept. Unfortunately we lost Barnie owing to an infection and Stevie Mouse was devastated. But she soon had two new puppy brothers to torment, Ringo and Spud.
Luckily Stevie Mouse made it to full health; her eyes are not perfect but she can see. She has problems with bright lights (no, she is not a Gremlin) but she can chase an ant across the floor so I don’t think we have to worry too much. She is not safe to be let out of the house though, hence the expense of erecting a cat porch enclosure or ‘catio’.
Stevie Mouse Gets A Sister
By the time Stevie Mouse was six months old I relaxed and realized she was going to be fine. By then she had her new sister Emmy to keep her occupied. Emmy was two months younger and had epilepsy so Stevie Mouse took on a surrogate mother role with her.
Sadly, the first year of the COVID epidemic Emmy suffered kidney failure and died and Stevie Mouse was clearly bereft. She was very clingy for a while but adapted, not least as she now had a newcomer, Treacle, to knock into shape.
Having said that, Treacle gives as good as he gets and recently managed to scratch Stevie’s eye. This left her with a dreadful infection and the chance she could lose her eye but luckily treatment saved it. She just has to have eye drops every day and her sight is slightly worse than before!
I Am Stevie Mouse
I published a book about all the trials and tribulations with Stevie Mouse entitled “I am Stevie Mouse!” You can read about my writing process in an earlier blog. It was published before Emmy died and Treacle came along. It is available from my Blurb store. This is the video introduction to the book.
Stevie Mouse has grown into a soft, gentle, beautiful little creature that graces the house and when I look at her my heart sings. She features regularly in my cat short stories including my favorite ‘Stevie Mouse And The Feather‘. Happy Birthday Stevie Mouse!
Where You Can Purchase The Book
The book is standard portrait, 8×10 in, 21×26 cm, 20 pages of words illustrated with my images and available as from my Blurb store. I have allowed a full preview of the book so you can see what you are purchasing.
This article was originally published in 2017 and updated and republished to celebrate Stevie’s birthday on 29 April 2022.
Before you go
My name is Dorothy Berry-Lound an artist and writer. You can find out more about my art and writing at https://dorothyberryloundart.com.
Thank you for reading!