Long story short: we have 6 new kittens and one of them had a botfly. A what? A botfly. A nasty bug that lives under some mammals’ skin. It’s gross. It’s repulsive. It’s disgusting.
One of the kittens we got two weeks ago, at two weeks of age, started having some blood around its neck. I thought it was from its collar, so I removed the collar. The wound did not disappear. After a closer look, I saw a hole in the skin. An absolutely round hole. Strange. Whatever. A couple of days later, the hole is still a perfect circle. I google “hole in kitten skin”. As it happens often when you google stuff, you find the worst. And the worst it was: a thing living under the skin in my baby’s neck.
Off to the shelter we go. They look at it, confirm it’s a botfly, but reassure me that they looked and it’s not there anymore. Gone. Matured and went away. We just need to keep it clean.
Home we go. And wait. And wait a few more days. And clean the hole. And the hole is still there, still round, and growing. Stuff is oozing out of it. Kitten doesn’t want to eat. One day. Two days. I go back on google and get the flashlight out (the mega flashlight). And right there, the bug is staring me in the face. I swear. That thing had two beady eyes and looked at me, and rolled onto itself back into the hole. But the vet staff at the clinic told me it is gone. I am seeing things. I don’t know what I am talking about. Yet I have this nagging feeling that there’s a monster in my kitten’s neck.
Off to our vet we go. The one we pay for! The one who’s super awesome. Of course we arrive not long before they close, because emergencies (or what my nerves convinced me by then was an emergency) never happen at convenient times.
And I was right. There was a bug there. Dr. Karen Burlone, veterinarian extraordinaire, got the monster out. After removing it, she came into the room and asked us, with a glitter of pride and disgust at the same time “wanna see it? It’s huge!”. She brought the thing back into a little cup. The nastiest thing you have ever seen. A black bug, about the size of a normal olive, still wriggling in the formaldehyde. With two little beady eyes at one end of it. Yuck. Yuck. Yucky.
My baby is saved. And he (we now believe it’s a male kitten) fell asleep on my shoulder.
Back to home we go. And like a champ he ate. We call him Norton. Because he got debugged!