Yesterday it was Willow’s turn to be shoved in the cat box and taken off to the vet.
She’s almost 5 years old and hasn’t had many health complaints over the years (apart from mysteriously fracturing her pelvis a few years back). However, since June last year she seems to be plagued with a chronic “mouth problem”. First signs were swollen throat, gums and tongue – for which she had cortisone treatment and it seemed to right itself. But then, in November we noticed swollen glands again AND swelling on the upper lips (both internally & externally). Vet said it was an auto-immune thing, quite common with cats so she had another treatment of cortisone. Back in December, because it never really cleared up properly so treatment was extended . . . and back AGAIN end of February because it had flared up again.
And only 2 months later, it’s back !
So I took the poor thing along yesterday, wanting to know if there was no other treatment that could sort her out. and the answer was “No”. It’s a chronic condition and will simply have to be treated each time it flares up (which is in my opinion is far too frequent at the moment). Anyway, vet gave her a good check-up. It obviously hasn’t stopped her eating because weight was normal at 5.1 kg but it has changed her behaviour. She’s never been a terribly sociable cat, preferring to stay upstairs, well away from the dog . . . but lately she’s literally been hiding and only creeps out of her hiding place when no one is looking.
Vet looked through his medical books to see if there weren’t any new products on the market he could try. And there weren’t. BUT he decided to change things slightly and put her on a much longer course of treatment. Before it was tablets – over a 3 week period. This time he’s going to attempt something more drastic. Treatment by injection: 3 lots, at 2 week intervals . . . so she’ll be on cortisone for 6 weeks instead of 3. And, because cortisone, while reducing inflammation also lowers the immune system, she’s also going to be on a 2 week course of anti-biotics.
Knowing how I chickened out with Le Bleu’s injection earlier this month . . . vet began counting out anti-biotics in tablet form: morning & evening for the next 2 weeks . . . and I’m standing there looking at this pile of tablets wondering how on earth I’m going to manage to FIND Willow twice a day for the next 2 weeks (since she has so many out-of-reach hiding places in the house). So I piped up and asked “Can’t we do it by injection?”
LOL Utter stupifaction on vet’s face and a “Are you willing to learn this time?” And me: “Well I’m going to have to, aren’t I?”.
Anti-biotic injections will be 1 every 48 hours for the next 2 weeks. But vet has offered to coach me for the first ones. He did the injection yesterday (before I had a chance to say anything), but I’m going to take her back to the clinic on Thursday and Saturday so that I do the injection with the vet by my side. And from then on, I’ll be on my own for the remaining four.
You can’t really see much in the photo – her top lip just looks a little pink on one side but in reality it is really really swollen and inside looks positively yellow. It must be so painful and I am determined this time to grit my teeth and do what it best to see her feeling better. So . . . to be continued . . .