Sunday, 30 December 2007

30th December – Accidents happen: Part 2

Apparently damaging part of the tail or limb in this fashion is a rather common accident for many cats and dogs, but unfortunately for Ripley because of the nature of the accident and the severe way the tail was injured an inch and a half of the tail had to be amputated. To perform that simple operation the vet said that he would had to use anaesthetic for the operation, and due to the fact that Ripley is one of those cats that it is almost impossible to give medication in the form of pills he had to give her instead a two's week injection to avoid infection, and of course she will had to have stitches (which they would have to come off in 2 weeks time which of course this will also mean another visit to the vet for the removal but at least this could be done in our local vet, which is only a couple doors away but opens at strange hours and for a very limited period only on week days) and finally and worst of all she would also have to wear an Elizabethan collar for a week.
Unfortunately when such accidents happen (because your partner was careless and didn't check whether there was a cat near by when he tried to close the bath door despite regular warnings about and particular Ripley's habit of following any human when going to the bathroom) the result is discomfort and pain for the cat or human who has the accident but also stress for everybody who lives in the same house (cats and humans), but at least after the wound has being treated, you then know that there is no immediate danger for the health of the cat anymore and you can relax a bit. At least now you know for certain what kind of injury your pet has suffered and what you need to do and how long it will take for your pet to fully recover. Losing a bit of a tail it is quite bad but at least it was only a small part which hopefully will not make a lot of difference to her behaviour. And of course it is also that kind of relief then that also helps us recover pretty quickly from the shock of the bill that the nurse presents you with. A bill of £150 for cutting a bit and shaving a lot of the tail and for a stupid and uncomfortable collar which could have probably made it yourself pretty easily and even made it to look a bit more comfortable and better looking than it is but then again at least your cat is insured and hopefully you'll get some of that money back. The important thing is that your cat has being treated and the injury wasn't that bad as you thought it was or was it?
So after a couple of hours of worrying while the operation is being taking place after all they are cutting off part of your cat's body and she is under anaesthetic, which can be dangerous in some cases, your vet tells you that everything is fine and your cat is ready to be taken back home. She looks a bit dopey but of course this is an expected effect of the medication.
So the journey back is not that bad either as the cat is still asleep and she hasn't realised yet that she is wearing a stupid and uncomfortable collar or that she is missing part of her tail while the rest is being shaved and stitches are hanging where the end of the tail used to be.
Finally you arrive home, you get her out of the basket and you then sign with relief. 'The worst is 'over', you think.
But of course you seem to have forgotten in the mist of worrying and stressing about the other cats who are waiting rather perplexed and a bit freaked out at home that the new appearance of till now familiar and friendly cat, the new smells that she brings with her of medication and strange place and people and of course the missing part of the tail with the stitches, the shaved rest and of course that funny looking and probably smelling collar will definitely freak them out and make them worry of Ripley and at first of you too. So to add to your already built up stress you have also to deal with Ripley's reactions when she finally realises that something is missing, something is different and something has being added to her neck and head.... So the first reaction as it was expected was that of panic when she got of the basket and struggled to stand to her own feet and then she attempted to free herself of what it looked and probably felt like a very uncomfortable neck wear...
Of course it is expected to take some time to get used wearing that horrible collar, to avoid pumping into things and miscalculating distances and spaces where her head now can fit in and of course to eat, drink, move, sleep, use the tray, etc while at the same time I will try to help her adjust with providing wider bowls for feeding and drinking and give her more attention and help her scratch in places where she can't reach any more while at the same time I need to try to help the other two cats realise that she is still the same cat they knew before the vet visit. It is going to be a very stressful week for humans and pets, but at least for now the stress of the day and the effect of the anaesthetic which hasn't worn off yet have helped her to finally go to sleep in her familiar, favourite spot which gives everybody else a feel for normality for a while at least.
(to be continued...)

No comments: