During the winter, southern Alberta sometimes experiences chinook winds, the local name for a foehn wind that blows down off the Rocky Mountains. Though it sometimes feels very cold to the skin, it raises temperatures greatly and swiftly. This occurred last week, when the temperature climbed from -14° to five or six above zero in a couple of hours. The foot and a half of snow that covered my town disappeared in two days.
One living in regions where winter is wintery all season long may think this a good thing, but it does have its disadvantages. The amount of run-off overwhelmed the water-purification plant that serves the district and so, as a precaution, the town authorities issued an order to boil water before drinking it. Most people bought bottled water, which I dislike using. I have a four-gallon barrel of tap-water stored which I renew from time to time, and drew on that, so I and the most of the cats were able to drink rather stale but clean water.
Not so with Tungsten. My orange one does not drink from a bowl, at least not while I am at home. I’m sure she does when I am absent, as she has no choice - I’m sure she does it! - but when I am present, she demands water dripping from a tap. In this case, however, the water may have been dirty. It is true that the water was likely fine to consume, and the warning no more than a precaution by the town government against being sued. With myself, I was ambivalent. After all, I ate bacon and fried potatoes with a piece of pie afterward for dinner on Friday. The concern I have for my health cannot be too great. But Tungsten’s health is more precious.
Consequently, I tried running the tap on the big four-gallon keg for her. Having a giant blue jug balanced on the bathroom basin’s counter unnerved her a bit, I suspect, and she did not want to lap up the water dribbling from it. Then, I remembered the big, fat syringe I used to feed Tucker his medicine some months ago. I filled that with water and used it a tap. To my surprise, it worked.
The water emergency is over and we can drink from taps again. It smells heavily of chlorine but, strangely, the cats do not object to that. The event made me think, though, that the tiny terror probably is not taking in as much water as she should. I will start pumping water into her (it sounds more fun (for me) if I phrase it that way) a couple of times a day. She will dislike it, but with her border-line kidney problems, I believe it may be necessary. It wouldn’t hurt in any case. At least it’s not medicine, and I don’t have to space the waterings twelve hours apart.
Little does she realise the fun for which she is in store…