Monday, April 14, 2008

up and down and up

we have indeed accepted a good offer to buy our house. and thank you all again for your kind wishes for our success. escrow to close may 23. yikes, that's only 6 weeks! there is, as bobby burns reminds us, "many a slip 'tween 'twixt the cup and the lip," but this is a simple offer and the buyers supposedly (oh dear) have their financing lined up already so it's up to an appraiser. we signed the offer on saturday morning. wahoo!!!!! we are on our way.

but wait. life goes on in all areas possible. watch out, as jon carroll, one of my favorite columnists, warns readers when he's going to talk about his cats, here comes a cat post. and medical to boot.
on friday we noticed bonsai, our cat, lying down in his litterbox. that's not good. he also tried to urinate outside. both unusual behaviors and indicative of bladder problems. looking in the litterbox we could see that he had urinated only a small amount. i called the vet and got an appointment monday morn. by saturday noon the little bits of wet litter were even smaller. very smaller.

so bonsai got an emergency trip to the vet. male cats have a tendency to bladder blockage, thanks to a lousy intelligent design. it does require immediate attention. fortunately it is a very short way to the clinic so he only had to complain a short time. the vet has a metal examining table and we put him up there. i get to hold him, gently but firmly by the scruff with one hand, controlling his body with the other, while the vet examines him. she looks at his eyes and mouth. he is fairly calm. and then she says "let's see if he's blocked," and she lifts his tail while sliding her other hand along his belly back between his rear legs and somehow squeezes out a bit of urine! i am amazed. robin has retreated to the outer room. bonsai hardly seems to notice. robin tells me later that she couldn't believe the vet did this, and the following tests, without wearing gloves. i agree.

now there is perhaps a teaspoon of cat urine on the stainless steel table. the vet gets some sort of high tech test strip and dips it in the pee. tho the liquid looks clear and only slightly yellow the multiple use test strip indicates that the ph is ok, but that there are also both red and white blood cells, suggesting that crystals have scratched his urethra and that he has a bit of infection. as there is still flow the treatment is hydration to flush out his bladder, steroid to reduce inflammation thus increasing flow, antibiotic for the infection, and sedation for relaxation. so i get to keep holding the cat while he has a hydration needle stuck in him and something like a cup of saline runs into him. slowly. robin has rejoined us and speaks soothingly to bonsai. i hold him against my body as becomes more restless. the vet, meanwhile has checked the urine under a microscope and confirms the diagnosis of crystals. the final indignity is a shot of sedative.

jumping to the conclusion and breaking the tension, bonsai has urinated more in the past 12 hours (i'm writing this sunday afternoon) than in the previous 48. the treatment seems so far successful. the trip home from the vet was peaceful as he was dosed. by the time we got home he couldn't walk, so robin put him under the bed in his safe spot. he growled at me if i got near. weakly. today he has almost completely forgiven or forgotten my sins and purrs a bit when i rub his head. i give him, morning and night, a dose of liquid antibiotic squirted into his mouth. i am not completely off his shit list.

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