Oh, the poor baby boy!
I just got back from the vet clinic – without Leyendecker.
Our first surprise is something you can’t see in the photo. When we went hunting for him to put him in the carrier, we found him under a shelf in the basement. Well. Not really a shelf. The inside of an gutted antique radio in the basement where a speaker used to be. It had been used a nest when he was a kitten. The basement is cooler, and where most of the litter boxes are. When he came out of the shelf, his white fur was orange! Especially his paws were bright orange. I’m thinking rust, maybe?
Anyhow, we got him in the carrier, then my daughter carried him up the stairs for me, since I can’t do stairs well at the best of times, never mind while carrying this big boy. I got to the clinic about 15 minutes early, but they were running behind, so we ended up waiting about 45 minutes before going into the examination room. Poor boy yowled for most of the ride in, and much of the time in the waiting room, too.
My daughter had sent me a list of the symptoms they saw that I read off to the vet when she came in. One thing the girls noted was the first time it started. He had been using the litter box, though they couldn’t tell whether he was trying to poop or pee. By the time I finished reading the list, I think the vet had already figured it out. She gave his abdomen a feel and, almost right away, said he had a blocked urinary tract. She could feel his bladder. The poor thing probably hasn’t been able to pee for days!
We’ve been there often enough that they know we have limited funds. In fact, I have zero budget for any of this. My daughter said she would pay for it. Now, paying for the check up is one thing, but the procedure averages about $900-$1000, depending on how bad it is. And it would be done tonight. The alternative, if we couldn’t afford the procedure, would be euthanasia. I messaged the family right away, and before I finished telling the doctor that my daughter was paying for it and it was up to her, I got the okay.
All those commissions she’s been working so hard on are coming through for Leyendecker.
Once the vet got the okay, she quickly weighed him – he is 8.6kg/19 pounds – then rushed off with him to their kennel, while they prepped to put him under and get a catheter in him. I waited until someone else came in with the authorization form to sign.
Right off the hop, we’re at almost $475. They’re authorized for a maximum $1000, with a request to phone us if it might go over. I don’t know what my daughter’s budget is, but it will take a few days for her to transfer the funds from her PayPal account. The fortunate thing is, we haven’t finished doing our monthly shopping, so I can actually cover the amount until her transfer clears and she can send it to me. Meanwhile, my husband has even transferred some funds his dad sent him for his birthday to help contribute!
We will get a call tonight when they are done, to let us know how things went. He will spend the night at the clinic and, if all goes well, we’ll be bringing him home tomorrow, though from what I’m reading online, they tend to be kept in hospital for several days, because the catheter is left in for a while. We will find out more when they call us tonight. I think they’ll be able to give us the total damage by then, too.
One thing is for sure.
Leyendecker is now off the adoption list!
Update: I just got off the phone with the vet a little while ago. Leyendecker was just waking up when she called. The procedure went well, though they did have some issues getting the catheter in because he’s such a big boy.
The good news: they found NO crystals in his urine at all. Which means the cause was along the lines of muscle spasms and stress, not a UTI. So far, he is recovering well, but he will stay with them for a couple of days, with the catheter in. When he comes home, it will be with a muscle relaxant and some pain killers.
The not so good news: his bloodwork was pretty bad. His kidneys tested off the charts, as did his potassium levels. This would be because he was blocked for so long. Usually, at those levels the heart simply stops. They want to test him again after a couple of weeks to see if he has permanent kidney damage.
Once he’s back home, I’ll try to isolate him in my office/craft room/bedroom. With Nosencrantz and Butterscotch still refusing to leave the room, I hope that works out. They don’t get along normally, but if he’s recovering from surgery, that may change. Keeping him here will allow me to monitor him and make sure he’s actually urinating properly. We’ll also be able to monitor his food and fluid intake and, hopefully, reduce his stress.
When I commented that he was off the adoption list, the vet actually said he would do better in a household with fewer cats. Which is true. It’s just difficult to justify after spending so much money on him and, frankly, there are other cats in our household that I think are more adoptable. The problem is, people aren’t adopting these days. All the shelters are full with mostly surrendered cats. The alternative is to start sending some of the fixed indoor cats outside, and I just don’t like that idea at all.
Meanwhile, we will do what we can for him.