Monday, December 2, 2013

Cat Update

I am sure that reading about my Daycare World is becoming repetitive, boring and tedious (welcome to my world??) so I have decided to take a break from my young dependants and talk for a little while about my furry ones instead.

As I have mentioned, both of our kitties have been doctoring for quite some time. Junior Cat (who adopted us at the end of May) has had chronic diarrhea since we met and Senior cat developed pneumonia in August.

Spoiler Alert - Don't they look hale and hearty? Junior Cat is waiting for his turn at the water dish. He wasn't so patient in the days there was soft cat food in the dish.
 Dare I say it ... but things are looking oh-so-much-better for both of our furry felines. 

Senior Cat was my biggest concern. He wasn't able to bounce back from his pneumonia and his vet (after several doses of antibiotic didn't work for the long term) suggested steroids. If he had asthma, steroids would help. If he had cancer, steroids would prevent her from diagnosing and treating it ... but they would make him feel better. We opted for steroids.

The steroids finally got rid of Senior Cat's cough. This was a start. We then doubled the dosage and he (finally) started to gain some weight. The dosage was halved two weeks ago and (drum roll please) ... he hasn't looked this good since before all of this began.

He is still not quite back to his kitten-like ways. Wrestling and cat chases are short lived and sporadic. But they do happen on occasion. He has gained almost a pound (he was down to seven pounds) and although you can still feel the bones in his spine when you pet his back, they are now cushioned with a small layer of fat. His coat is lustrous and healthy, he is socializing ever-so-much-more and he is purring much more often (not the monster purr that was his signature ... but his purr is so much less 'rusty'). 

His eyes are soft and loving when he looks at me. I wish I knew what he was thinking. Is he faking it? Is he grateful that we helped him back to where he is? He just looks ... good. And happy. And grateful.

Andre hasn't slept on the back of this couch for a while (he used to 'live' here).
Meanwhile, our Junior Cat is flourishing in every way. His diarrhea never did appear to bother him (it did bother the rest of the household however). We tried everything. Strong and powerful antibiotics, intensive deworming absolutely no food besides the cat food that his previous owner insisted was 'best'. Last month, I talked to the dietician at our vet's office. She recommended a gastro intestinal cat food that they stock. It was guaranteed to work (even a money back guarantee).

Well, it took a few weeks longer than they guaranteed ... but I do believe it is now safe to say (I have been cautiously hopeful for a while now) ... but I believe it worked!! The side benefit is that our Senior Cat's turn around in health coincided with the introduction of this new cat food as well. His coat has never looked shinier. Shedding is down to a minimum. They eat this food like it is candy. I may have referred to this food a time or two as 'gold nuggets' ... it is expensive. But I think that it has been the turn around point for both of our kitties! I simply could not be happier. Or more grateful.

"I am healthy! Hear me ROAR!!" says Junior Kitty
 My gratitude is overwhelming. But it is tinged with sadness. Our vet diagnosed and treated Senior Cat with minimal tests. She went by instinct, previous experience and knowledge and offered her best guess. The dietician talked to me on the phone and knew exactly what to suggest. Junior Cat's symptoms were not life threatening but they were chronic. No one prior had been able to steer me in the right direction.

A life threatening and a chronic health situation were all but cured. Six months later, we are coming out the other side of this little mini drama of the cat-kind. I would be so much happier ... if only the same cures and diagnoses were working as well for many others of the non-cat-kind. 

Life is funny. Sometimes we get what we hope for. Sometimes ... we don't.

As happy as I am for my cats, I am saddened even moreso for those who have not been so lucky. If we can fix what ails us, we are very fortunate indeed ...

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