Apparently, I was wrong. Kitty didn't declaw himself. He appears to have gotten in a fight with another cat and suffered a bite, causing an infection and then an abcess...which burst...today. At about 4:00pm.
Mandi was here to babysit Shirley Jean because both Richard and I have class on Tuesday nights.
Richard said, "I have to go to class tonight. I can't take him to the vet."
Mandi said, "I can take him. We'll be fine."
I said, "No! You'll have the baby, too!"
Mandi said, "No, it's ok! I can take both." (Isn't she stinking amazing???)
I said, "Maybe I should just stay home tonight and take him to the vet."
At that moment, the front door opened. We had all forgotten that Lauren was coming over!
Lauren stayed with SJ, Mandi took Kitty to the vet, and Rich and I both left for class after praying together that the Kitty would be ok.
I won't lie, I felt a little out of sorts.
SO...the fantabulous Dr. Blair shaved Kitty's paw, cleaned it up, doped him up (he's feeling GOOOOOOOD--I just chased him off of the refridgerator!), and sent Mandi home with antibiotics and strict orders that Kitty is not to go outside for the next two weeks. He also recommended that if he's going to fight perhaps he should become an indoor kitty.
I think he might have a good idea and we'll use the winter to phase him out of his outside habit.
It looks like everything will be ok, but I still have to look at the cat's nasty paw until his fur grows back.
Ish (this is seriously gross--don't look if you're squeamish):
Click on a photo to enlarge.