Friday, September 28, 2012

Tucker (Almost) Triumphant

Tucker made his latest visit to the veterinary this week. He was declared to be well on his way to recovery. The results of the surgery are healing very nicely; the doctor seemed surprised at how well things were going. There is a little raw patch near his injured area, but when I ventured the opinion that it was caused by the edge of the cone rubbing against Tucker’s skin when he tried to lick the region, she agreed with me, and considered it to be nothing to worry about. Indeed, in the last few days, it has not become worse. Tucker is not licking his wounds much at all, and hair is growing back.

This is quite a victory for my roly poly. This is a cat who spent several days in hiding when he first came to me, and had to be force-fed for a week, because of the emotional effect of the change. When he had dental surgery, the trauma to his nerves was so great, he licked himself raw under the tail. Now, though the veterinary visits were a great strain on him, he has, mentally and emotionally, vanquished his fears. That’s not to say that he did not have them. On what I hope will be the final medical visit for him for a long time, he wet in the carrier, such was his anxiety. But once home, the cone came off and he was able to clean himself as he hasn’t done in a fortnight.

Now he is more active than ever, literally. Even long before he was afflicted with his urinary troubles, he was not as mobile as he is now when playing. He had been quite agile for a tubby little sausage, but over the last couple of months, he slowed down. I thought it was boredom with the toys we were using, but now that I think of it, I realise that he may have been troubled by urinary blockage for some time, and it only recently became a crisis. After all, when one has a full bladder most of the time, the joy of running and jumping palls somewhat. But now he rushes about chasing a piece of string (of all the toys I have for the beasts, he likes this simple one the best right now), throwing himself along the carpet (front end down, rear end up) and leaping over and zooming through the nylon tunnel. He has been given a new lease on life.

The total monetary cost of Tucker’s revitalisation was high, just over $3,000. But it prevented a higher cost: my cat’s death. It has ensured that such a problem as he had, and to which he was prone - increasingly so with age - would not recur. He acts like a youngster now. He’s without pain and he’s happy. I consider the money well spent. I have learned to watch my cats even more closely for signs of trouble, and I am gratified that I listened to Tucker when he told me of his distress.

He has continued to wet on the carpet downstairs, but in smaller amounts. I will deal with that. It’s an emotional problem that will, I feel sure, disappear with time and effort. It’s a leftover of his physical troubles and, compared to them, is a minuscule affair in our lives. Tucker will triumph over that too, eventually, as he has over other things. And if he stumbles a little, I’ll be there to catch him.

UPDATE: I didn’t think I’d have to catch him so soon. He had a bit of a relapse today. I realised that he was under the weather this morning when he didn’t purr at all. He was leaking blood in his urine, so I took him to the hospital again. He hated that, so I did, too. He has an infection, so he is back on the medicine he was given immediately after his surgery. It’s the weekend, so I wanted to have him seen to before everything closed for Saturday. The veterinarian is confident that the problem will be cleared up soon. I hope so, because my roly poly has been through enough, and I want him purring again.


  1. Oh Tucker - we are glad you are more joyful and hope the infection is just a minor set back. Mom has dropped some change on us as well and also considers it money well spent. :)

  2. Poor Tucker. Fingers and paws crossed for him.

    I keep the calming product Zylkene on hand now for Derry, get it from the vet. As far as I know I'm the only client to try it; it's out of the UK, has been around for several years there, is based on a milk protein, lactose-free. Not terribly expensive, $20-something for a bottle of 30 capsules. I just open a capsule and mix it with Derry's canned food. It's good for short to medium term use (i.e. up to a month at a time).

    It wouldn't be of use for an emergency vet run, but if there's a scheduled vet appointment, giving this to him for a few days or a week beforehand *might* help. I don't know anyone else who is trying it, so can't say whether it's helped any other cats, but you can Google it and get the company web site for further info.

    Anyway, healing purrs to Tucker from my boys.

    1. I have been trying Zylkene to Tucker during his recent troubles. I don't know whether it's helping or not, as it may be, and he would be even worse without it. In any case, I'm glad to read of you using it and how it works. It's encouraging.

  3. Sending comforting purrrrrss to Tucker. We just found out he was hurting. We hope he is feeling better soonest.

  4. Goodness, poor Tucker! We're purring and praying that this passes very quickly, that he's back to playing and being a purry rolly polly again!

  5. I would say that it is always a bad sign when cats don't want to go in their boxes. If a cat is in pain they will associate that pain with the box itself and look for somewhere else to urinate. I had a cat with a stone in her bladder, before she was diagnosed she used to pee on the carpeted stairs going down to the basement instead of her box. After her surgery to remove the stone she never went back to the stairs and I had the carpet ripped up.

    Sweet Tucker has been through so much I hope this is the last of it and he will be fully recovered soon!!!

  6. Good luck, Tucker. may there be many happy days ahead for you and your mum.

  7. Oh Tucker, we are so sorry you had a relapse. Hope the medicine fixes you up really soon. We sure are sending mighty big purrs to ya. You are a cutie pie and need to be all well. Take care.

  8. thanks for visiting me on my birthday and sending greetings. I love having all those messages on my birthday, particularly as it was a quiet day for me otherwise.
    best wishes,

  9. Kiss kiss, Tucker! Feel better! :). xoxoxoxo