Felines

Descriptions of my cats, the things they do, and their relationships with me and with one another

Scare Tactics

Only eight days after Revelly crossed the Rainbow Bridge, I got another awful scare. Pawscar Awesome, my orange polydactyl “michikitty” (for the shape of his front paws), refused to eat his supper and his breakfast the next morning. He was not as active or as talkative (is “howlative” a word?) as usual either. These symptoms were eerily similar to the ones Revelly displayed before her final hospitalization.

I was due at my Wayne State job Monday afternoon, but managed to squeeze in what turned out to be a rather lengthy visit to the vet before I drove to Detroit. Pawscar was dehydrated, and an x-ray revealed that he was also constipated. Dr. C. admitted him to the hospital for IV fluids and an enema. She ran some bloodwork, which hinted at the possibility of pancreatitis and low potassium. Neither of these turned out to be what ailed Pawscar. In fact, nothing in the testing revealed a definitive cause for his dehydration or constipation.

Pawscar Awesome
Pawscar Awesome in the Hospital

Dr. C. let me take Pawscar home today. I am grateful that he seems better and is acting more like his usual self. A nagging concern remains: if we do not know what caused his problems this time, how can I feel any measure of confidence that they will not recur.

Scare produces prayer (or at least, it should).

In a Different Valley

My walk today was through the valley of the shadow of death (Psalm 23:4). Dr. L. from Gasow awakened me with a telephone call this morning to tell me that Revelly had now shown definite symptoms of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy: fluid on the lungs, galloping heartbeat, a strange little “meow” or breath noise. She suggested that I could take Revelly to the emergency veterinary hospital for an echocardiogram, but said that there most likely would not be much that could be done to help my kitty. I opted instead for a final visit and a very mournful goodbye. I know that the Lord is with me, even in these sad circumstances (Psalm 23:6). I would like to believe that I will one day be reunited with all the felines I have loved.

 

We did not have Revelly for long. She was dumped at Gasow Veterinary Hospital  by her former owner, who insisted on being shown to an office without providing any information on herself or her cat (except maybe that she was 10) and then left Revelly in an exam room. When I met her, Revelly was named Rosalita. She had had elevated kidney values as a result of several bad teeth that were removed before I adopted her in May 2012. I was told she got along with other cats, or at least ignored them; this turned out not to be the case. Eventually, Revelly adjusted to her multi-cat surroundings, but she always had growls and swats for Gobblin’ Goopuss (whether he was up to no good or minding his own business). Revelly had a number of interesting traits, the most noteworthy of which was her energetic tail swishing (hence the nickname “Webelly Whacky Tail”). She also had a tendency to suffer from an upset stomach; periodic B12 injections helped with that. I will miss her feisty tortitude.

Another Sick Kitty

Last week it occurred to me that twelve-year-old Revelly might be sick. She had not been eating much, nor had she been wandering around displaying her whacky tail or fighting with Gobblin’ Goopuss. Off she went to the vet on Thursday for an exam, bloodwork, and subcutaneous fluids. The next day the vet called to tell me that Revelly’s potassium level was quite high. Everything else was normal. I learned that if the potassium level increased more, Revelly would develop heart problems.

Back to the vet Revelly went on Saturday for a recheck. The potassium was a tiny bit lower, but still in the “danger zone.” The vet recommended a special blood test to check the steroid levels in Revelly’s blood. When I took Revelly in Tuesday and mentioned that she had not eaten at all that morning, the vet decided she should stay and get some IV fluids (without any potassium, of course) as well as the test.

Until this evening I was quite concerned about Revelly’s condition. She was neither active nor very responsive to me. The techs assured me that she was eating some of the canned food they gave her, which made me feel a bit better. The results of the special blood test will not come back until sometime next week.

Revelly
Revelly in the Hospital

Today the vet ordered the administration of a dose of steroid, which Revelly got at about 12:30 PM. This evening she seemed much more alert and wanted some attention. She even ate a bit while I was visiting. I am praying that Revelly is now on the road to recovery.

Losses Mute December Joy

I am very sorry to report that two close family members have had to bid farewell to much-loved feline companions in the last ten days. On December 9, my sister Melissa’s newest kitty, Choo Choo Charley, crossed the Rainbow Bridge at the age of five. He had developed a condition which made it impossible for him to empty his bowels on his own. Despite lots of loving care and veterinary assistance the problem could not be corrected or even improved.

Melissa's Phone 224

Last night my cousin MJ and I tearfully said goodbye to my “godcat,” Pwitty Girl (more commonly known as PG). PG was MJ’s first pet, a prissy little beauty whose high-stepping curlies (curly paws) always impressed me. She was adopted from our vet in July 2000 at the age of 1 1/2.  A little over three years ago, PG was diagnosed with liver cancer. MJ tenderly nursed and encouraged her, undoubtedly prolonging her life. Until this week, she had been a very enthusiastic diner. She always welcomed me when I came to feed her while MJ was at work, displaying keen interest in the meals I would concoct for her in the kitchen. When she lost interest in food and dropped below four pounds, MJ knew it was time.

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I hope to meet these kitties again one day on the other side of the Rainbow Bridge. In the meantime, these losses make me very sad.