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At wit's end

I should know better than to say the cat is cooperating, because then he starts not cooperating.

He must be experiencing some kind of significant discomfort. Because he won't sit still on my lap for fluids. He won't play or cuddle and be jollied into staying with me. My attempts to work with him are just harassment, clearly: he'll tolerate a little back-stroking for a few seconds but then retreats for a drink of water or a trip to the loo or a disappearance into the closet. If I try to hold him still, he squirms and flails and wails and claws me and dislodges the needle.

The important thing about this is that he has not had his proper dose of fluids for two nights. This is serious. I'll have to find a vet tomorrow and have them do it if he doesn't cooperate in the morning. I tried twice last night, three times this morning, and twice so far this evening. He squirms his way to freedom every time. You can't hold an unwilling cat still and keep a needle in place with one person: you need at least three hands.

No more than one appetite stimulant a day from now on: I'm sure they're what's causing the problem. Either that or some weird, very rapid reaction to the Epogen.

This is how he wound up back in the animal hospital: he started cooperating less and less and he got less and less fluid and his numbers shot up.

I don't know what to do, other than start taking him to a vet for it daily and making this traumatic for both of us. I'm calling my vet's office and the animal hospital tomorrow. In the meantime, I so hope that once he's gone 24 hours without appetite stimulants, he gets more cooperative again.

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( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
irishaithne
Jan. 17th, 2009 02:04 am (UTC)
I am hoping that it is the appetite stimulants, so that it can be quickly remedied. Poor baby!
np_complete
Jan. 17th, 2009 02:12 am (UTC)
Thank you for commenting: I'm freaking out, even though I know all I can do is wait until morning. I'm just too worried about him going without fluids.
irishaithne
Jan. 18th, 2009 10:47 pm (UTC)
I hope you've gotten some good news by now and figured out what's been bothering him!
np_complete
Jan. 19th, 2009 02:24 am (UTC)
I hope you've gotten some good news by now and figured out what's been bothering him!

I'm almost 100% sure it's the appetite stimulants. He was so cooperative and affectionate today, now that he's gone 2 days without them. He received a shot of Epogen this morning and didn't change behavior, so it's not that (that being the only other variable in his routine the day this started).

The vet was surprised at the idea that appetite stimulants could make him uncomfortable, but that's the way the evidence is pointing! Because he still needs to eat more, I'm going to experiment with one dose of stimulant per day, after fluids, and see how that affects him.
glory_jean
Jan. 17th, 2009 02:28 am (UTC)
Aww, so sorry. Cats are not easy patients. Hopefully your vet will some ideas.

My female cat is a scary girl, we've had to swaddle her in a towel to give her medicines in the past.
np_complete
Jan. 18th, 2009 01:14 am (UTC)
Today he was more cooperative, willing to stay still for half a dose of fluids. And then he introduced me to a new cat mood: purring heavily, but very squirmy. He liked the gentle rubbing of his cheek I was doing while the fluid dripped in, but didn't want to stay on my lap.

But if I can get a full dose in him in two or three tries, I consider that a victory.
catsfiction
Jan. 17th, 2009 11:35 am (UTC)
I really do feel for you. You must feel like this thing is taking over your life. I hope they can do something for him.
np_complete
Jan. 18th, 2009 01:19 am (UTC)
It's not usually this bad, and before the last few days I was actually feeling like the task had gone from being the major focus of my free time to just a chore I had to do every night. But that depends on him cooperating.

Thank you so much for your concern -- it really does make it easier.
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )