Loki: The Life & Trials Of One Black Cat – Middle Ground

Welcome back, dedicated readers and silent lurkers just here for the cat pictures!  This is the second post re-telling the life of my cat, Loki. 

For those of you who wandered over here, and have no idea what I’m talking about – here’s where I felt it necessary to explain the premise, and here’s the first post.  Follow the links for more kitty pics!

When we left off, baby Loki had made friends with cats who moved in after him.  Sort of.  But, it turns out, the cats still got along better than the humans.

To the surprise of, really, no one, my rekindled relationship with my ex-husband failed.  I ended up moving back in with my Dad and my sister (which would make for another interesting story… in the Jerry Springer sense of the word “interesting). 

There was very little to discuss when it came to where Loki would live.  I got the cat; my ex kept the piranhas. 

Yes, I’m serious. He had piranhas. We are crazy, metal, hardcore people. 🤘

I imagine a cat sees moving into a new house like this:  One day, you’re minding your own business, when aliens abduct you.  They fly you to a strange planet.  There are other animals living there.  Some your size and some much, much bigger.

And you’re the “middle ground” link in the food chain.  You have to hunt animals to survive.  But there are other animals trying to hunt you at the same time.

That’s what I tell people when they ask why their cat(s) are acting weird after a move.  I don’t know about you, but I would be a grump if I were involuntarily relocated too.

Still, Loki took to new space like a champ.  My sister’s 16-year-old cat, Bastion, on the other hand…

Actually, he didn’t really care either. 

Loki was now the number one guy in my life.  I showed my love with all the gifts I gave him.

I also showed my love in the stuff I let him destroy.

He seemed happy and mostly healthy.  The vet – and my own eyes – did notice his weight going up, though. 

Loki’s vet warned that his “chonk” could cause health problems down the road.  He recommended giving small “meals” and railed against free-feeding dry cat food.

So… Loki went on a diet.  Let me tell you, hungry cats have no sense of humor and know no boundaries.  Loki was a champion beggar. 

OK… the vet may have had a point…

He wouldn’t sit on my lap, unless he wanted something. Or if I had something else on my lap.

But, other than his checkups, vaccinations, and one cat fat-shaming session, Loki had no reason to see the vet.  And that all fit into one appointment.  An appointment that pet insurance didn’t cover. 

In 2014, though, the pet insurance company game was booming.  I mean, my friends still laughed at me for having it.  But, now, at least they’d heard of pet insurance.

And I had a choice in companies now!  A quick Google search showed me Loki’s insurer, VPI, was ranking OK.  However, a company called Healthy Paws ranked number one based on customer reviews.  Without ever filing a claim, I switched Loki over.

Not too long after, I had to take Healthy Paws for a “test drive.”

Loki had adjusted to his new feeding schedule, and he always reminded me when mealtime was approaching.  Believe me, this was one food-motivated feline.


So, when he started leaving food behind at mealtimes (and sometimes “bringing it up for an encore” 🤮), I took him to the vet. 

My vets have never pulled any punches with me.  He explained the cost and made his recommendation.  I know that he only took the x-rays to set my mind at ease.

The x-ray showed two things: 

1. When I say that “Loki was full of [bleep],” I mean we saw it on film.  I didn’t even realize cats could get constipated.  (After a few days of over-the-counter human stool softener mixed into his wet food, he was fine.) 

2. His microchip had “migrated.”  At most, the vet said he’s seen a microchip move 2-3 inches, in any direction.  Somehow, Loki’s had moved from between his shoulder-blades to the underside of his stomach.  No one would ever think to scan there for the chip if he were lost.  The vet gave Loki a second microchip and we were on our way.

Healthy Paws covered $71.61 of the bills, after subtracting the $100 yearly deductible and the $48 exam fee (which varies based on the vet’s specialty, and which few insurance companies cover).  They sent a check for 90% of that amount – a whopping $64.50. 

Filing the insurance claim wasn’t terrible (which is high praise when it comes to dealing with health insurance, IMO).  By late 2015, the entire process was online.  You just scan in the vet’s invoice and notes (usually available the day after an appointment).  Then, the company reviewed them and paid the claim.

That’s why I wasn’t immediately blown away with Healthy Paws.  I wondered if it was worth the premium (which started at around $20 a month and, over the course of 10 years, went up to $45).

I’d learn just how precious those premiums were very soon, though.

The next – and final entry – to Loki’s tale is coming soon!  However, it may take a while.  I want to figure out exactly how much money Healthy Paws paid out over the last four years of his life. 

I’ve been known to say that I’m so bad at math, I only got my college math credit by taking “A History of Math.”  Doing these calculations will be a testament to my love. 

Until then, here are more cat pictures!

Coming soon – the dramatic conclusion!


12 thoughts on “Loki: The Life & Trials Of One Black Cat – Middle Ground

  1. Pingback: Loki: The Life & Trials Of One Black Cat – Introduction | Writing Radiation

  2. Pingback: Loki: The Life & Trials Of One Black Cat – The Tough Times | Writing Radiation

  3. Pingback: Loki: The Life & Trials Of One Black Cat – Early Years | Writing Radiation

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