Sunday, 1 April 2012

The Further Adventures of a Little Cat...

This is my April contribution to Sian's Storytelling Sunday 2012.  A short tale about the continuing adventures of the small cat we all know and love:

Sherlock's Vetinary Adventure

Sherlock hasn't been so fit over the winter.  He had his regular check-up, just before Christmas, to make sure his kidneys weren't causing any problems for him.  The vet was happy with kidney function and his blood pressure, but said his teeth were in a bad state and she felt that he really must have something done about them soon, despite the risks of an anaesthetic for a cat with renal problems. 

He must have been uncomfortable with them, as they were covered in tartar and some were going bad.  Of course, bad teeth are known to cause lots of other health problems - both in animals and human beings - including heart problems, so it was definitely important that it was dealt with fairly soon.

He doesn't like winter time and tends to lose weight.  At that point, he was a bit under the weight we like him to be and we decided to make sure he was eating well and a bit fitter overall, before attempting any operations, so he had the best chance possible of making a good recovery. 

I thought it would be better to wait for warmer weather, as he loves to lie in the sunshine and always picks up health-wise, once the warmth of Spring gets into his old bones.  So, we set about feeding him up and encouraging him to get a little exercise etc.  Then I made an appointment, a couple of weeks ago, for Sherlock to have an overhaul, prior to booking him in for his dental work. 

The vet gave him a checkup, then put him on a 10 day course of antibiotics, as a precaution, and booked him in for last Tuesday.

So, Tuesday morning dawned and Sherlock made his journey to the Vet, shut in his box, rather fed up, accompanied by me and Davey.  We had to leave him there overnight, so they could check his blood pressure, give him blood-tests for kidney function and general health, then put him on a hydrating drip overnight, to make sure everything was working well before he had an anaesthetic. 

It was strange at home, without our little cat.  As soon as we got back, I was opening the door and calling "Sherlock, we're home!", as I always do... :-( no Sherlock, of course. 
It was sort-of empty - no cat round our feet in the kitchen; no cat lying on the back of the sofa; no cat following me round the house.  It didn't make the little nagging voice, that suggested he might not come through the operation, feel any easier to bear. 

The vet very kindly called us, around tea-time, to confirm that his blood test results were better than she had hoped, his blood pressure was normal and she would therefore put him on the drip and operate in the morning.  We were to call at the end of the morning, or early afternoon, to see how he was and whether he would be able to come home, or would have to stay in their special care unit overnight.

Wednesday was a tricky day - I was supposed to be working on a batch of commission books, but really, I wasn't getting on very well.  It's hard to be inspired by your work, when you have a little niggling worry on your mind... I did my best and tried to get on with my day, but it was a relief to be able to call the vet at 1pm, to ask for a progress report.

He was fine.  In fact, he'd come round quickly and was, at that point, sitting up and nibbling on tuna, fed to him by a kind vetinary nurse!  Would we come and pick him up - say, around 2:30?  

Well, what do you think? Of course we would ... we could hardly wait for it to be 2pm, so we could get in the car and drive to the vet, without seeming to be in too much of a hurry... (after all, we are British - we don't indulge in unseemly public displays of anxiety, distress or's just not done!)

So there we were, sitting in the vet's waiting room, at 2.20pm.  Adele, the vet, came out to fetch us, went over the operation and told us that he had done very well.  Aparently, she'd only had to remove five teeth, as the others, once cleaned up, were in good condition (made me feel very pleased that we try to take care of him!).   He had more antibiotics and some painkiller, that we should use only if he was in pain. 

He came out to see us, looking a bit dopey and bewildered, but so obviously happy to see us, that we both felt a bit choked up, I think!  And we brought him home, made a fuss of him, settled him comfortably on his bed. 

The little shaved spots, where he had blood tests and a drip...

Of course, he didn't stay there. He's fine. He has been carrying on as if nothing had happened.  He seemed a bit uncomfortable that first evening, after the painkilling injection from the vet had worn off.  So we gave him his half-dose of Metacam (yes... I wasn't happy about Metacam, but the vet assured us that a half-dose could safely be given to him - and he was fine).  After that, he hasn't needed more help, other than being given soft foods only for a few days, to let his mouth heal up (none of his "dental" treats in the mornings, only his small tablets, that he can swallow easily, with the antibiotics in a little bit of cheese to mask the taste.

He's doing well.  We hope he will begin to improve now, health-wise, and to get fitter - and fatter.  Today the sun is shining, so he is alternating between sunning sessions and lying inside, to cool off, ready for the next spell in the sun!

We're so lucky to have Sherlock. He's a fabulous little cat and we all love him.  It was so hard to make that decision, for him to have his teeth done, as the risk of losing him was very real.  But he has bounced back, with no apparent ill effects.  I was even able to call the vet on Friday morning, to tell her he didn't need the follow-up appointment to check his painkillers etc, but could wait for his final follow-up in the next few days.   It's a relief to have him home and well.  We hope he'll have many more happy years ahead of him now, with a more comfortable mouth and better health as a result!

"Love that Old Cat" - an old page, but so appropriate!


  1. What wonderful photos - a really beautiful cat! Great to hear that he's recovering well!

  2. I'm crying with emotion here I love my cats too and know how hard it is to make a decision that can go either way. So glad he pull through so well and so quickly .

  3. You sound as if you have found one seriously good vet! What a lovely story of care for a dearly loved pet. It's heart warming. I have tried and failed to pin your lovely page - the pin it button wouldn't come up - but don't worry, I'll get back to it. Thanks Lizzie

  4. Siobhan thinks Sherlock is cute. She hope's he's better.
    I've sent you 3 e-mails recently - did you get them?

  5. we here in 2 cat central are relieved too. after willow's adventures with her badger 3 years ago we dread visits to the vet but thankfully our recent trips only involve the buying of flea repellent,
    jo xxx

    ps big fluffs to sherlock xx

  6. Oh Lizzy I'm glad Sherlock is doing so well - hope that he continues to enjoy the sunshine and some treats. Not surprised he was glad to see you, although Lil Miss was very miffed for about a week after her only Vet stay as she knew full well who had taken her there!

  7. It's crazy how much we can love our pets - but I totally understand!

  8. He's a gorgeous looking cat and I can understand all the worry you've had of late.

  9. We're pleased to hear that it all went well. Hope you feel much better now, Sherlock.

  10. I can imagine only too well how worried you were...and am so glad that Sherlock is much-improved..lovely pics of him!
    Alison xx

  11. Sweet Sherlock,I'm glad you're feeling better ... You gave mummy & daddy a bit of a fright xx

  12. really lovely story, thanks so much for sharing.

  13. So glad he came through ok our Spider had to go under aneasthatic before christmas and as she is 14/15 (rescue cat so we don't know exactly) I was so worried about it. Lovely story Lizzie x

  14. I am so glad Sherlock is feeling better. To begin with I thought maybe there wasn't going to be a happy ending and I am soooooooo happy that there was. He is such a cutie!

  15. I'm so happy the Sherlock is doing well! He is a beautiful cat, and I know firsthand how much company these little furballs can be! Give him a scratch behind the ears from me! xox

  16. Ah! Sherlock clearly has lovely and loving owners! Glad all is well ... And your page is a great tribute. :)

  17. hooray that sherlock feels better and is recovering nicely. It would be very sad to lose such a precious member of your family!

  18. I was keeping my fingers crossed the whole time that he pulled through and everything went well. So glad Sherlock is fine!

  19. I'm glad he came through it alright!

  20. Firstly, thanks so much for visiting my blog and your lovely comments. I'm still learning and really enjoyed the CI Challenge. I've had a snoop around your great blog. I love your guest books. I'm so pleased your cat is OK, pets are like our children, aren't they?
    Happy Easter Suzanne #100

  21. We've always had cats since I was a little girl so I knew exactly what you were going though & was willing Sherlock to pull through for you :) so glad that he is healthy and happy again :)


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