Maybe the title should be “The Reluctant Patient” or “The Neurotic Peep.” Both fit.
It’s the peep today. Gracie is on sick leave and the others are snoozing. Gracie had her dental surgery on Monday. We were expecting five extractions along with a good cleaning. What she received was eleven extractions. She has three teeth left. Some had broken off below the gum line and they had to drill out the roots. For the most part, it went smoothly. Except for me.
The vet group I used is good. I chose them because they do x-rays, and I knew her teeth were bad. If I must fault anything it’s in the “setting my expectations” and “communications” category. I do much better when I understand the process and the timing.
I had to have Gracie in around 7:30 a.m. There were two surgeries scheduled – Gracie and a dog. The receptionist said she couldn’t guarantee but the vet usually did the cats first and the second surgery was always underway well before noon. Ok, I’m thinking her surgery would be around 10 a.m. or so. When I hadn’t heard by 1 p.m., I got nervous. (Let’s face it I was neurotic all day!) I called to find out she had just gone into the process.
First up was x-rays. They called at 1:30 with the news that her teeth were worse than they thought. I had to approve the extra cost. They would call after the surgery was over.
When I hadn’t heard by 4, I called again. (I pictured them trying to resuscitate her just like on the medical shows. Clear! Shock! Stat!) The vet was just finishing up and would call when she got a chance. They said that Gracie was doing good so she was still alive.
I didn’t hear until 6:30. It was a “lively” discussion as we covered medications and such. You can’t pill Gracie. Any meds would have to be either injectable or perhaps a small amount of liquid. Very small. I made sure that her file was marked “CANNOT PILL so don’t give owner any or she will go postal on you.” (Look that up is you don’t get the gist.) Unfortunately, the antibiotic injection isn’t appropriate for dental work. Boogers.
I couldn’t pick her up until 3 p.m. the next day (Tuesday). I had a function that I half enjoyed…maybe. I’m one of those folks that doesn’t feel okay until they see their loved one whether it’s human or furry. Only then could I relax.
When I went to pick her up, I received a lot of liquid medication (oy vay) and instructions to keep her in a collar for seven days. I looked at the tech and said, “Do you really think I’m going to do that?” She didn’t know what to say. I just smiled and thought “get me my damn cat.” (Think of Jack Nicholson in The Shining. I was just as scary!)
Gracie did not make a peep all the way home. There were no stories about the other prisoners or even a complaint about the music I had on the radio. This was very unusual. She likes to sing along or at least do a commentary on my music selection.
I opened the carrier. She bolted out at Mach 1 speed and did two major zoomies around the house. Then she went to her food dish. (Did I mention she had a ding dang collar on or that they couldn’t get her to eat so she hadn’t eaten for two days?) I put food down, but the collar thrashed the food everywhere but her mouth. Off with the ding dang collar. She ate two full cans of Fancy Feast. She has never done that.
She also made it clear that there was no freaking way that collar was going back on. We chatted. I told her if she didn’t paw at her mouth, she didn’t need it.
She never did paw at her face, so the collar went into the closet.
She went on a feeding schedule of every two to three hours. (Where did that come from? Do I look like an orderly? Tuna sammich please!) She ate and slept for two days preferring to nap under the bed where no one could reach her. She wasn’t trusting anyone with opposable thumbs. They do dumb things like put collars on cats.
Thursday dawned a different day. She batted the mousie around; slept in the big fluffy cat bed and was an all-around pest. She does not like getting the medication and I wear as much on my face as she has in her stomach. Whatev. We try. (It takes 300 lbs. of humans to half medicate this 8-pound cat. The beloved husband wears the medication too.)
The other cats have been different. No other word for it. They will not pester her when she eats (and she eats more often than they do so they just sit and watch in envy). Even Sasha, who will push any cat out of the way with her voluptuous hips, will sit and wait until she’s done. Any bets on how long this politeness will last? I’m thinking maybe this weekend it goes out the window.
Gracie goes in for a check-up next Wednesday. I wonder if I will be able to get her in the carrier.