Monday, June 19, 2017

Dylan Thomas's Cat: Do Not Go Peaceable to That Damn Vet

Do Not Go Peaceable to That Damn Vet

Do not go peaceable to that damn vet,
A cat can always tell a trip is due,
Hide, hide, when your appointment time is set.

Wise cats who watched, and learned the alphabet,
And never let men know how much they knew,
Do not go peaceable to that damn vet.

Young cats who want to keep their claws to whet
On sofa legs, and save their privates, too,
Hide, hide when your appointment time is set.

Sick cats, poor things, whose stomachs are upset,
But hate to eat some evil-smelling goo,
Do not go peaceable to that damn vet.

Old cats who have no wish to sleep just yet,
And plan to live another life or two,
Hide, hide, when our appointment time is set

And though your human sweetly calls his pet
Or rants and raves until his face is blue,
Do no go peaceable to that damn vet,
Hide, hide, when your appointment time is set.

--  Dylan Thomas's Cat --
Henry Beard: Poetry for Cats

I always had trouble finding my cats when it was "vet time.I finally figured it out:  I had gotten into the habit of bringing out the cat carrier from the closet in the morning of a trip to the vet.  When I stopped, I had no problems after that.


  1. Is this really a Thomas poem or just a clever homage and parody? Hmmm. Cats, btw, a smarter than humans. Really! I have three rescued feral cats who outsmart me everyday, but that might say more about me than them.

    1. Tim,

      It's a parody written by Henry Beard. He has a book titled _Poetry For Cats: The Definitive Anthology of Distinguished Feline Verse_. I've made two other posts that have similar parodic verse.

      Are cats smarter than humans? I think the answer is obvious.

      Dogs are finally catching on as they slowly adopt the cat life style and move out of the "working for a living" pattern.

    2. it's all true; i see it every day...(my daughter's a vet...)

    3. Mudpuddle,

      Chuckle. . .

      I wonder if other types of pets show the same disinclination for a trip to the vet.

  2. My cat has also learned the cat carrier trick.

    Thanks for sharing the really neat verse.

    1. Brian,

      I'm glad you enjoyed the poem. Beard has written a number of other poems, similar to this one. I've posted on two of them already. More to come in the future.

  3. That is a hilarious poem. I currently have no cats, although I would love to. It's just with my dogs who attack cats (I got to pay a neighbor's vet bill-bad story) and my guinea pigs and bird who might not be safe from cats, they are probably not a good fit right now. I do love them, though.

    Cats are certainly very clever and let you know when they are displeased. (My sister has three cats).

  4. Sharon,

    Good point. Some dogs and cats can co-exist, but not all.

    Normally when I came home, the cat would follow me about until I settled down somewhere and that meant lap time. However, when I brought her home from a trip to the vet, she would disappear for several hours before she deigned to come out and bless me with her presence.

  5. Cats always seem to be a step ahead. :) My little dog (a chihuahua) always knows when I'm planning to go out and leave him behind. He always knows when my daughter is coming to pick me up and he's included - he loves to go for a ride in the car. As for the vet - yeah, he kind of knew something was up. Ha.

  6. Yvette,

    We obviously give off clues in our behavior that pets pick up on. After all, we are very important, possibly the most important parts in their environment, especially around meal time, so they probably study us very carefully, perhaps even more so than other humans around us.

  7. Replies
    1. Alexander Hay-Whitton, Yes, it is that. It also happens to be a favorite poem of mine, so that adds to the enjoyment.