…it's probably because Dexter lives in your neighborhood. Dexter isn't the cat's real name, it's just what we call him. Here's what Dexter will do to you. He'll come up to you, meowing, rubbing against your legs, positively begging for attention. So you pet him, and he acts really happy. Starts purring, rolls over on his back, and then bites you with no warning.
Dexter's bite about three months ago was what finally convinced me to pony up the paltry $40 a month for Alberta health insurance. We didn't know if he was feral, or what. I secretly wondered if he had rabies, but since I wasn't covered I decided to just wait and see what happened - rabid animals die soon after the virus becomes communicable. If the animal dies or gets obvious rabid signs soon after biting you, you have just enough time to get the shots you need in order to live. On the other hand, cat bites often result in nasty bacterial infection. Since this bite was fairly superficial and easily cleaned, I was not too worried about that.
It was after this that we learned that he apparently belongs to our neighbor, Trapper.
Trapper works up north at the rigs every other month or so.
He calls the cat "Nipper".
I was feeling particularly dejected this morning and Dexter came up, acting friendly as usual. I knew he was still evil, but I hoped petting him would help me feel better. The household hypothesis was he would not bite you if you did not pet him on his belly or while he was lying on his back.
We now know this is false. In fact, he gave me a set of four punctures in my left hand, one of which was quite deep. Cat mouths breed disease and their teeth act like hypodermic needles, injecting the bacteria directly into your tissue. So this time, covered by Alberta Health, I went up to the local walk-in clinic, was prescribed a week of Amoxicillin & Clavulin tablets, and also told I would need a tetanus booster. I had to go somewhere else for the shot, since for some reason it's free at the community health center, but not at the clinic.
This is the first time I have used any Canadian medical services and it seemed fairly straightforward. I did not need to fill out any forms, just figure out where to go and present the appropriate IDs. So far I have only paid $9.21, which was about a quarter of the nominal drug costs. I remain paranoid that I will receive a hefty bill in the mail, since I am still not sure exactly how all of this works.
There is noticeable redness and swelling around the bite. I remain hopeful that the antibiotics will keep any potential infection in check.