This is a long haired cat and along with dust bunnies they bring fleas. Chewy and I have really been fighting fleas for the last 4 months or so. I took her to the local cat cleaner where they cliped her, snipped her and dipped her. At the same time I flea bombed the apartment. She was so tramatized by the incident that she wasn't herself for for a day. I think it was a combination of the fleas, and the blow dryer at the cat cleaner. You know how cats fear vaccuum cleaners and blow dryers.
Over the last month her fleas returned and I had given her a bath about once a week. Last Thursday morning she was so listless and hadn't eaten I thought she had hair balls from her grooming and went to the vet to get her some Lactone for the them at the same time I was able to buy Advantage over the counter. That stuff really works!
Thursday night after work Chewy was a lot worse and I had to rush her to the emergency Vet hospital. Her body temperature was down almost 5 points, her red blood cell count was really low and she had a 40 % chance of making it. They wanted $1250 for a transfusion and a bunch of tests. That was out of my price range. The next option was a transfusion and meds for $300. That was closer but I don't get paid until Tuesday and no they were not going to give me credit. Then the doctor said that they can put her to sleep. THAT WAS NOT AN OPTION! I have never felt so stressed in my life and after some prayer I asked them if there was anything else I could do. The final option was to pump her full of meds and take her home and keep her warm, force feed her Pedialite and fluids.
By this time Chewy was also incontinent so when I got her home I laid her on the top half of an adult sized disposable diaper and covered her with the other half. I got some old gym socks and filled them with rice and nuked them for 10 minutes. They are better than hot water bottles. I then set one on each side of the cat in the diaper and covered her with towels and blankets. This really worked out well to keep her warm. We all know how warm those diapers can get.
Next I went to the store to get pedialite, gerbers baby food (chicken noodle) and the treatment began. The doctor gave me a syringe (without the needle) to feed her fluids and every two to four hours she got them whether she wanted them or not.
Chewy was not eating solid food so I had to devise a way to get proteins into to her so I took the Gerbers chicken noodle baby food and combined that with warm water to feed her with the syringe. That was real messy and I had to put a bib on the cat. I also had Baby formula that I made for her. By Saturday she was showing some improvement and on Saturday night she got up and sat up for the first time. I moved the covers to check her diaper and it was dry. I left it open on the floor and took her to the kitchen for our little feeding cermony. afterwards I set her on the floor next to the diaper and she what she did next totally blew my mind.
She walked onto of the diaper and proceeded to pee on it. She knew what they were for after seeing me in them all that time. I then changed the diaper and said "what a good baby to the cat" and put her covers back on for her evening sleep.
This morning (Sunday) it appears that her recovery is doing much better. She ate some solid food and is back to using the cat box. But just to be on the safe side maybe I should keep her in diapers just a bit longer.
Mike A June 14, 1998
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