richardf8: (Default)
We found Cuchulainn. The idiot was in the basement all this time, doing an excellent job of Not Being Seen. He would occasionally make himself heard, which always resulted in me looking for him, but he was nowhere to be seen.
So six weeks of no food, limited water and a chilly environment took their toll. He's lost 60% of his body weight, was quite hypothermic, and we're not 100% sure he can see (though we suspect he can). He'll be remaining at the emergency vet until 7:30 am, at which time we will move him to our regular vet. He is in a heated cage and receiving intravenous fluids (he's too dry for subQ).

Grendel seems relieved that we found him. I think he tried to show us once or twice, but we shoo'd him out ot the basement, because cats aren't allowed down there, and we figured Cuchulainn had gotten OUT.

[ profile] morgan1 has a more articulate account here.
richardf8: (Default)
When we were cutting boughs yesterday to put atop our sukkah, one of the cats, Cuchulainn, got out through a screen door that was held ajar by an electrical cord. I was rerally tired last night and went to bed early, and did not note his absence until morning. We scoured the neighborhood all morning, and put up signs. I got a call the afternoon from someone who saw him about a block and a half from here, but they couldn't catch him. Covering the ground he might have covered is impossible since the geography of streets, alleys and fences that constrain us mean nothing to a cat. I've put out tuna in the hopes that he will return to stop and stay. I just heard a noise out there and opened the door to a feline gaze, but it belonged to one of the neighborhood tabbies, out on regular patrol. Hopefully Cuchulainn will hear of it. Those posters I've put up, with the picture on them, it's like seeing your someone you know on a milk carton. . .

Ahoy Matey!

Nov. 6th, 2004 04:50 pm
richardf8: (Default)
The veterinary clinic where we take our cats has been doing some absolutely wonderful stuff with murals. Here is a mural that they've comissioned for their parking lot:

Here is a detail of the Squirrel: )

Here is a detail of the Pirate: )

They were taken with a super-duper-cheapo-crappo digital camera I got for free. But I figure we could all use a little whimsy this weekend.
richardf8: (Eating)
The other day, when I was at the food coop, I picked up a coupla cans of truly nasty-ass catfood, basically tuna and mackerel in aspic -- total if-your-cat-doesn't-eat-this-he's-on-death's-door bribe food. The stuff reeeekkkkkssss!

And Grendel's eaten about half a can of it.

richardf8: (Default)
Well, finally got something like a diagnosis on Grendel: he has pancreatitis. We switched his diet from Hill's I/D to Hill's W/D, which is basically pork liver. It's actually real low in fat and should therefore help relax the pancreas. He'll need to be force fed for a while and subcutaneously hydrated. Hopefully we can get it under control before it does much damage. I'd hate for him to wind up diabetic from this.
richardf8: (Default)
When Ronald Reagan ran for office in 1980, he posed a simple question to the American People: Are you better of than you were four years ago? I think it's a question that every American should reflect upon before going to the polls. So Am I?

Four years ago I was making $3.00/hr more than I am now.
Four years ago I had Health Insurance, today I have none.
Four years ago I had some money in a couple of 401K's. Today, none.
Four years ago I had at least an illusion of privacy.

That said I'm voting the democratic ticket. And if Nadir runs, I will write letters asking how much Ed Gillespie contributed to his campaign.

Grendel accepted some food by mouth tonight and held it down. He gakked the oral antibiotic though. (I don't blame him, it's nasty stuff).
richardf8: (Default)
Tonight I brought Grendel back to the vet. Dr. Troye was working, which is good because she's our preferred vet. Dr. Casey, while a helluva good guy, and Dr. Troye's betrothed, isn't half the diagnostician she is. That's not to say we have a diagnosis. The radiologist's report came back: Some highlights:

The radiologist was "amazed" (his word not mine) by the excellent condition of Grendel's organs given that he is 11 years old. I take pride in this because I have always ensured that he gets only the scantest amount of things like fish in his diet, and have always considered the ash-content of any food I feed. No stones were observed.

He noted that the stomach lining seemed irritated and expressed mild concern about an odd distribution of gas. However, he felt this could be attributed to aerophagia (swallowing air.) Given the way he's been vomiting, this does not surprise me. He noted that there was no evidence of tumors, and generally did not appear to be in need of surgery (Yaay!).

I also wanted another X-Ray snapped tonight so I could get Dr. Troye's interpretation, although I was able to interpret it sufficiently myself:

1) Barium made it all the way through. Some remains in the ascending colon, but a path out was found.

2) With two cats in the house, it is difficult to determine which cat produced the poop in the box, so I did not know if Grendel had pooped. The X-Ray from this evening showed the posterior colon to be clear of fecal matter where it had been present in the previous day's X-Rays, i.e. HE POOPED! (Yaay!)

So we're at a bit of a loss as to why he's puking. I asked for a urine test. Some bacteria were present. Dr. Troye didn't seem overly concerned about this, but since Maeve and Willie have been passing something around, and Maeve often visits with Grendel and Cuchulainn, I asked for some antibiotics.

So, the treatment plan:

We have some syringes preloaded with Reglan (anti-emetic) and Zantac (Antacid) for subcutaneous delivery. Hopefully these will soothe his stomach enough that he can hold stuff down. I will not offer food this evening. It seems to be working -- he puked a bit when we got home, but has now gone nearly two hours without an episode. The goal is to get him settled enough that he can start his oral antibiotic tomorrow, otherwise he goes back for a poke in the butt.

Grendel is now resting comfortably on the sofa, and since I have to be up early tomorrow to give him two shots, I think I will follow his example and turn in now.

Edit: He had another episode as I saved this, but they are less frequent
richardf8: (Default)
Thanks to all of you who are sending happy healthy cat-vibes Grendel's way.

Well, he's home right now. He flees food and if pressed about it, gaks. The vet does not have a solid diagnosis yet. Tomorrow there will be a report from the radiologist who will look at his X-Rays (including 3/4 of the barium series). I looked at the 4th piccy tonight. It successfully passed the small intestine (yay) but had not gotten very far in the colon. Ominously, the barium that was in the colon appeared to have a fibrous edge to it. What the hell? What can pass through the duodenum and then form a blockage in the colon? Is it like an acccumulation of hair or something?

He's home because he was terrified at the vet's and Dr. Casey did not feel that was a therapeutic environment. He did not gak while there (at least not that anyone observed), he held his urine, and if he's going to poop at all, he seems disinclined to do it there. So he came home and I gave him fresh litter. If he poops, I'll have no way of knowing it's his.

We were given the tools and materials to force feed him, but I cannot do this to a cat that is holding nothing down. He'll rolf it and I will have only added to his stress. He's a solid cat, and isn't nearly in danger of starving yet, so it isn't urgent.

I'm wondering if the whole colon thing is the wrong angle anyway. His symptoms are nearly identical to what I experienced when I had an inner ear infection two years ago. And now that he's moving more, he's gakking more which fits with that theory. Ah well, we'll know more after the radiologist's report tomorrow.
richardf8: (Default)
I noted loss of appetite and puking with loss of balance over the weekend. [ profile] morgan1 and I ran him to the vet's last night. The X-Ray showed a clear area at the head of his colon. They kept him overnight, took more films, and the area hasn't budged. Here's a transcript of a MS Messenger session I had with a coworker today:

[ profile] richardf8 says:
Grendel seems to have some kind of blockage at the head of his colon. They're going to do a barium series to see if it is an actual blockage.

Coworker says:
This is familiar ground to me. Andy had barium, then two surgeries (three, if you count the hernia repair a year later.) I feel for all of you.

[ profile] richardf8 says:
What did he need the surgeries for?

Coworker says:
He'd eaten a yard of crinkly curling ribbon right before F & my wedding. We spent our honeymoon at the emergency vet clinic, and then at our regular vet's, waiting for outcome.

[ profile] richardf8 says:
Cripes! I wouldn't be surprised if Grendel ate some newsprint that Cuchulain shredded.

Coworker says:
That might mush up in his gut from digestive juices. The ribbon was retrieved somewhat intact from Andy's gut.

[ profile] richardf8 says:
How much did it end up costing?

Coworker says:
Hundreds. And the vets gave us a huge break. They charged about 350 or 450 for the first surgery, then threw in the 2nd and 3rd. They are wonderful. I kiss the hem of their garments.

[ profile] richardf8 says:
Who is your vet?

Coworker says:
One of them is retired. The other is [Name of Veterinarian] DVM
They used to be with Airport Pet Hospital, but that is no more. The freeway by Hugedale was widened.

[ profile] richardf8 says:
By "Hugedale" to you mean the Maul of America?

Coworker says:
Yes, Mall of America. Airport Pet Hospital was down by 66th street and the hiway going south into Hugedale. I'd give Dr Boschert a call.

[ profile] richardf8 says:
I'm actually pretty confident in my vet.

Coworker says:
Oh, good. The barium may be all that is required. (May show it to be a passing thing, that is...)

[ profile] richardf8 says:
Yes, if only he passes it.

Coworker says:
I've got my fingers *and* toes crossed for you guys!

[ profile] richardf8 says:

Coworker says:
You betcha. Let me know how it goes. (Poor kitty!)

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