This week I have been preoccupied with our cat, Crofty.
It started when we noticed that he appeared to be a bit nervous. Then he started crying when we picked him up. We thought he’d hurt his back leg as that seemed to be what the problem was so we took him to the vet. She shaved a little hair off the leg we suspected but couldn’t find any sign of anything, only a slight bruise. We put his behaviour down to having a scrap with another cat. The vet prescribed pain meds and we decided to keep him inside for a day or so.
The following day he wasn’t acting normal. He was hiding under furniture, sleeping on the floor and weeing often. Our vet was fully booked so I took him to the one in the next village. She suspected he might have a touch of a urinary tract infection and gave him some supplements that we were to sprinkle on his food. It was anti inflammatory for his bladder and would calm him.
The following morning Crofty woke me at 5am crying like he was in pain. He was cowering in the corner of our bedroom. When I picked him up he wet himself all over me. This is unheard of. He is the cleanest animal you can imagine, he never even had an accident as a kitten. This was uncharacteristic but what was worrying was the colour of his urine. It was a deep red orange. I rang the vet and insisted we be seen immediately.
This time the vet kept him in for the entire day for observation but also to get a sterile urine sample. They literally inject the bladder and syringe the urine out. The sample was to be sent off to the lab for analysis.
The next day I called to get the results and was told he did in fact have a urinary tract infection and there was a lot of blood in his urine. The anti-inflammatory supplement he was on would help, as would the pain meds but he would also need antibiotics. I asked if I could come and get these alone as I didn’t want to subject him to any more trips to the vet. He hates his carrier and the car and wails the entire time. I figured he’d endured enough stress. So I went and collected the drugs.
That was Friday. This morning my daughter commented that she thought he’d hurt his leg. Sure enough when I looked closer he had a nasty hole in his leg. An actual hole with what appeared to be torn skin and puss. Don’t fret, I haven’t included a photo. Anyway, it looked nasty. Back to the vet.
Being Sunday our little village vet was closed so we had to travel into town. Our third veterinary practice this week. He howled and yowled the entire way there. When we got in to see the vet she listened to the whole palava with great interest. She was decidedly robust and no nonsense, pulling my cat out of his carrier swiftly. She took one look at his leg and declared it was a burst abscess. She drew my attention to the mostly-healed puncture marks around it. “Infected cat bite” she announced briskly “Most UTI’s in cats are brought on by stress. This is the cause of it all”.
What followed wasn’t terribly pleasant. They had to hold him down to shave his leg to ensure his fur didn’t become matted in the wound. Then they had to clean the wound and put on the cone of shame. He cried throughout and so did my daughter, who excused herself and went to stand in the waiting room.
We now have more antibiotics and pain meds. We have to go back to the vet in 3 days. In the meantime he must wear his cone to prevent him licking his leg and stay indoors. He’s currently sitting at his locked cat flap crying to go out. It’s going to be a long 3 days. I’ve ordered a Feliway plug-in diffuser to help him with the stress.
One thing I would say is thank goodness for having pet health insurance. Crofty has racked up a fair few bills this week and we’re not done yet.
Hopefully this will be the end of his troubles. For now we will have to settle for kitty kisses and cuddles.