I was reading polly's path about her goat with pink eye, and was remembering when our cattle had pink eye once. I wasn't very old, third grade or so, so I couldn't help, but I could climb the fence and watch Dad. Pinkeye is very nasty, and I was admonished not to touch the cows, and to wash my hands completely if I was anywhere around them.
This wasn't a big problem, I was small, cows were large, and I really didn't want to get up close and personal to something sick... Until the cats got pinkeye, too.
This created a problem. I have been a 'cat person' since I was born. Dad finally figured out a way I could help. I held the kitty, and he put the stuff on. We checked with our vet, he said just use the same meds we were using on the cattle.
This was easier said than done.
The stuff we were using was vivid purple, and came from a spray can, that made an unmistakable, cat-unfriendly hiss. I held the cat, Dad sprayed, cat panicked, Mom told me to go in and wash my hands... Thoroughly.
One cat, an all white one, managed to get out of my grasp, and Dad was still spraying. Therefore, it had purple not just on its face, but all the way down its back, nearly to the end of the tail. One of the hazards of an inaccurate method of applying, but we were able to get all the kitties dosed, and the cows, and everyone was healing, if creatively colored. (It didn't show much on the black cows, or the grey cats, but man, it just nearly GLOWED on the white one.)
This was no big deal, until I invited a friend of mine over. She wasn't exactly an animal person, and except for cats, I don't know if she had even been around them much, and probably not even the cats. She was quite fine with my admonishment to not touch any of the animals. (Very hard for me to follow, as I was used to petting, and feeding, all the animals when I returned home from school.)
I still had to feed, and so was putting out cat food, when she noticed the Purple Wonder. "Is that the way that cat is actually colored?"
Now, I didn't realize she was serious. I proceeded to say something to the effect, yes, it was a rare breed we'd developed, and we were trying for the perfect purple skunk stripe, and this was the closest we'd come to. I'd not been looking at her, as I was juggling cat food, barrel lids, and avoiding touching lovey cats. (The last was the killer...)
I looked up, and she was digging in her purse, with her eyes as big as saucers. "How much do you want for that one?"
Um. I was joking. You do realize that, right?
No, seriously, I want it. You are making them to sell, right?
Breeding. And she's fixed. And no, it's pinkeye medicine, it's not real.
Then she became rather upset. I can see that cat's eyes perfectly, they are yellow with purple, NOT pink!
Ooooh, boy... I kept explaining, and explaining, and EXPLAINING that it was a joke, and no, she couldn't have the cat. Finally, Dad came out, and I asked him to show her the can of pinkeye spray, so she could see what I was talking about. Dad, bless him, explained what it was, sprayed a tiny bit on a board to show her it was purple, and then he had us go in to Mom, where she had us wash up, in case we'd touched the cats.
She was still grumpy when she left, and to this day I wonder if she still believes that we were breeding pupleback cats!