Not remotely. He isn`t Mary Archer, he`s a raggy-arsed nineteen-year-old (at least 8000 in cat) who`s begun to smell like the corpses of all the tiny critters he`s despatched over the years.
He always used to groom fastidiously and constantly; he`s still bendy and suffers no arthritic achings... But these days he`ll have an occasional swipe of face and front paws, then go for a nice lie down.
Naturally (isn`t it?) he`s always exuded the fumes of hell when he`s breathed on you (from your knee or from the end of the garden); now he reeketh from every pore. Most Unnaturally.
We are what we eat, it is said, and as he plunges further into decrepitude, what he eats becomes ever more unsettling.
Not for Spartapus (guess George`s favourite film) the bowl of Kitty-splatt and those treats with the meeelting centre. He`ll have Tinned Tuna in Sunflower-oil-not-Brine… maybe a couple of thin slices of Sandwich Beef or some spicy Polish Sausage…
After one minute at these delicacies, he stops shovelling and starts Yowling. He`s not hungry - he`s The Devil.
"Look in your bowls, evil cat" (we cry) – "you`ve got eight kinds of flesh and some of my Greek yoghurt – we have nothing else to give you!"
He stares unblinking as we sit down to tea and his message is clear: OK - I`ll have what you`re having.
So we sacrifice chunks of our chicken and he graciously nibbles at them. Briefly.
I pander to his every whim because I feel his pain of downsizing to a tiny garden, and then of losing his twin sister last year. (Though Honestly - they were hardly speaking towards the end…).
Anyway, if treating the eating is hopeless, can we at least cure his sulphurous aroma that is now seeping from the very walls!
The pet-shop man suggested a Dry Shampoo for wet-averse cats. I was as thrilled as when they invented Shake n` Vac – would this work as well on the cat as it did back then on my T-shirts?
I gingerly waved the bottle of powder under Spartapus`s nose, expecting retaliation. Instead he seemed to inhale, taking a moment to savour it with a look of Hmm, Not Bad...
So we showered him liberally and drily, rubbed it all over and mopped it off with a warm damp cloth. And he looked FAB.
Had he Fragrance?
Not really. But we`ve managed three more successful applications and we`re optimistic about the future if we stick to his treatment.
Silly as it sounds, though, we are slightly concerned now about some kind of contagion...
The other night we popped into The Two Heads and were greeted with, "There you are - a pint and a Pinot Grigio, and - Bloody Hell! - what have you two been eating?"