Thursday, April 26, 2007

Tenth Life

I write this partly out of great joy, and partly as a warning to readers who may come as close as I did to making a very serious mistake.
Like many of us, I am owned by a cat. Her name is Skids, derived from the way she takes fast turns on bare wood floors. Or the way she used to take fast turns, back before she gave up the nasty habit of doing things that involve getting up once in a while. She's a tiny little thing - about five and a half pounds - and gets more milage out of being cute than Anna Nicole Smith and Sanjaya combined ever could have.
Skids is about 15 years old and has enjoyed good health throughout her life. It is only recently that she began to experience problems. (The problems involved her bladder and digestive systems; I'll spare you the details.) A couple of courses of antibiotics and some intravenous rehydrations later, there was no improvement. The vet took a urine specimen for some super-detailed testing, and told us if this didn't do anything to help it might be time to put her (Skids, not the vet) to sleep. (I detest that expression, by the way.)
In the meantime, my wife - whom I gratefully admit is smarter than I am - decided on her own to try something. Skids had been on a prescription diet for her dry food and, more recently, her wet food. (I know what you're thinking; her food was not among the ones affected by the recent contamination.) She (my wife, not Skids) decided to stop the prescription wet food and replace it with tuna fish. Skids, for her part, agreed to the experiment. In a matter of days, the symptoms that had been present for weeks cleared up, and testing indicated her levels of various cat things were within normal ranges. It turns out that Dr. Mom is not only a pediatrician, but a vet as well. (Makes a great meatloaf too.)
Today, the member of our family we refer to as the little furry person wet the sofa again. She's done it dozens of times over the years. And do you know what? This time, unlike any time before, I smiled. 


amy122389 said...

You furbabies have been on raw food (the BARF Diet) for two years now and they've never been healthier.  The dogs took to it right away, but it took the cats awhile to come around.... hamburger is their favorite.  :)  BUT...(get this) while we've been at my moms, she doesn't have room for all the meat we used to buy for them so the pets went back to canned pet food for the time we'll be here and...their skin is a mess.  Let's hope that's the only thing that's going bad...


rdautumnsage said...

I throughly enjoyed this telling about Skids. Being the animal lover that I am, I find in more cases than not sometimes simple logic works . I just took in yet another stray (Makes 5 Total in my house now, with Pickles added into the mix). Fortunately I'm getting this one fixed and in a month she goes to my daughter. I guess I'm forever amazed how these small creatures manage to capture our hearts to the point that, yes, they own us. I wish more people would take the time and patience that we invest in our own animals. (Hugs) I have a feeling Skids is going to be around for some time yet. Wishing you love and peace in the days ahead. Indigo

therealslimemmy said...

i hope skids continues to get better

csandhollow said...

With my Sebastian I give him tuna from the can and he always does better afterwards. Sometimes I just pour the juice after his dry food(he prefers it to canned) I am glad he is doing better

oldhousegal said...

What a sweetheart!  I'm glad Skids' story has a happy ending.  I've been owned by cats for the last 28 years and experienced my share of unhappy endings -- so I know how painful it can be.  One thing I've learned over the years is that I know my cats better than any veterinarian -- sometimes you just have to disagree with them.  The other thing I've learned is that all the high-tech treatment in the world is often no match for giving the animal a little TLC.  Come to speak of it, that works for me sometimes too!

gazker said...

I looked after our neighbours cat and the litte B would not eat anything. So, I puts down tuna, it was gone in seconds, from then on me and he were best mates. My neighbours couldn't work out why he wouldnt eat his food on their return... HEHEHEHE, if they only knew!