She’s home again, and I need help!

I am relieved to report that our Tuffy-Cat has survived her ordeal at the V-E-T’s, and that she is currently curled up on her favourite office chair. A beam of light is warming her back, and she is looking quite content.

We took her to the local vet this morning, to have her teeth cleaned and checked. Apparently, it was quite a harrowing procedure.

It turns out that two of her teeth were rotten and had to be extracted; and because they had deep roots, the extraction was not so easy. All the scale was removed from her remaining teeth, and they are now nice and clean.

All I can say is, thank heavens she was under anaesthetic for all this.

There was a bit of a drama when the time came to pick her up. My car’s battery was ‘dead’. Not even a click when turning the key. Hubby had to be called out of a meeting to explain to me how to attach the battery charger (which we’d bought during the Eskom crisis two[?] years ago) – I didn’t fancy electrocuting myself by attaching the red one first and then the black one, or whatever… He patiently explained to me, step by step, what to do.

And so I did it.

Step by step.

I left it on ‘boost charge’ for 5 minutes, in the hope that this would give me enough juice to drive to the vet. Upon testing it by turning the key in the ignition, I accidentally set off the car alarm. Cripes, is it LOUD!!! Especially when you’re sitting in the car at the time! Unfortunately the alarm must have chowed up whatever juice had been loaded.

Darn it.

After charging it for another 15 minutes, I was able to collect our little munchkin from the scary place where she’d been locked up for the last few hours. I felt terrible when I saw her in that cage, all dazed and with a resigned, hopeless expression on her face. She didn’t even want to look at me. Did she think we’d abandoned her? Such guilt… I spent the entire trip home apologising to her and reassuring her.

When we got home, Tuffy KNEW she was home again. She came out of that cage, with her eyes sparkling and her tail straight UP in the air, and immediately went to sniff everywhere in the garden and in the house, reapplying her scent marks to all the doors and posts and corners of walls, marking her territory. She was purring with her whole body and soul.

Pure happiness.

Resting on her favourite chair

Now there is just one problem.

We have to give her antibiotics to prevent an infection in her mouth. Giving her tablets has proved impossible in the past (you’d have to anaesthetise her to get them in), and so I turned them down. Instead, we’ve been given a bottle of antibiotic fluid, which I can either squirt into her mouth (!?!?!? Are you serious?) or put into some water.

I was told, sternly, “Make sure she drinks it”.

Huh?

“Make sure she drinks it. Twice a day. She won’t like the taste, so you have to take away her usual waterbowl until she’s had the medicine.”

Erm….

Knowing Tuffy, if I don’t give her nice, clean and fresh-smelling water, in the hope that I can ‘trick’ her into drinking the medication, she would rather drink from the water fountain in the garden, from the bird baths, or from puddles in the street. I don’t see her voluntarily drinking antibiotics.

Frankly,  I don’t understand why the pharmacy industry doesn’t invent a delicious tasting antibiotic for cats! Something that they would lap up with pure enjoyment? Surely, it can’t be that difficult?!

Short of ferrying her to the vet twice a day for the next week or two, which is going to cost a fortune, I don’t know what to do.

Help?

7 thoughts on “She’s home again, and I need help!

  1. Speaking with great sympathy & bearing numerous scars as testimony to being the loser in this battle over the years, try:
    FOR THIS TO SUCCEED, SPEED & SURPRISE ARE ESSENTIAL!
    1. Place cat on table. R to hold cat, but from behind, so she can’t see him. Wrap left arm firmly around cat upper chest and shoulders, pressing cat back surface to male chest.
    2. Make sure you get a cheap plastic syring from the vet/pharmacy. Fill syringe with one dose of muti.
    3. R to tilt cat head upwards with free hand.
    4. Reggie rapidly squirts dose down surprised cat’s jaws.
    5. R massages cat throat to get the muti down.
    6. Release cat
    7. Owners may now totter to source of alcoholic aid ……
    Bon voyage !!!

    • Hahahaha!! You had me in stitches there!

      Unfortunately, R has just left for the KAT site for a few days, and left me “in charge” of our claw-wielding creature. I should probably have a word with his boss about that.

    • Thank you for the support, Scott. It’s so comforting to know that other cat-owners have similar struggles. The vet told me this morning that I am being too soft with her: “You have to be firm, show her that you’re the boss. Grab her firmly by the scruff of the neck.”

      Sigh…

  2. I’ve had a *lot* of experience getting various pills & medicines into my bad boy cat (for about two years he got into fights regularly and was at the vet almost every month getting patched up). It’s hard enough when there are two of you, but doing it on one’s own is a real challenge! My advice: the TOWEL method. First thing I do is get all the meds ready and waiting on a high table (I use the kitchen counter). Then I close the window/door so cat can’t bolt. Then I quickly and calmly place a towel over cat, wrapping firmly left then right around front paws so cat is in a sort of papoose with only the head sticking out. This way cat is subdued, head movement is restricted and the claws safely out of the way. Then I lift cat onto counter top, wedging him against my body/arm to minimise wriggling. Placing my thumb and forefinger in the corners of cat’s mouth to open it up, and holding the head up as best I can, I pop in the syringe or pill as fast as I can and as far back in cat’s mouth as I can. Then I stroke the throat to make sure cat swallows. Even with lots of practice my Tom still spits out medicine as often as he can (it once took about ten tries to get a single pill down – unbelievably frustrating). With practice it gets easier and as mentioned above speed and surprise really help! Your vet is right too – you have to be as firm and in charge as you can, even if you have to fake it. Not rough though! I talk to my cat quietly while I give him the meds, not sure if it helps. I find pills easier than syringes, and sometimes smear a little butter onto the pill (apparently Marmite and anchovy paste work too, but I haven’t tried them). Agree with you that no way will a cat voluntarily drink medicine. However, I have put a few drops rescue remedy into cat’s drinking water (on vet’s advice) when he has been distressed and he drinks that okay. A few drops will help you too if you find the whole situation stressful.
    Good luck Reggie. Hope Tuffy makes a speedy recovery (she is gorgeous!)

    • You are an angel, Helen. THANK YOU! I feel so much better, knowing that our difficulties with administering medication to our cat are shared by others.

      Um… er… could we hire you for a demonstration of your towel method? A cat, a towel, and some medication can be supplied. 🙂

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