Friday, May 19, 2006

Rumors of Stu's demise

Our nine-year-old cat, Captain Stuebing, appeared to be on death's door this past weekend. After noticing Friday morning that he was not quite himself ... rather lethargic, for a cat ... I took him to the vet. She diagnosed him as severely anemic with a mass around his spleen that could be a tumor. I was advised to take him to the Small Animal Emergency Room for an ultrasound. He made it through Friday night on pain medication, but still very obviously in pain. On Saturday, I took him to the kitty ER.

Their diagnosis was the same, but to do the ultrasound, they wanted to check him into the hospital ... at a cost of about $3,000. I asked her for pain medication (for the cat) and took him home, fully expecting him to not live through the weekend. They told us he was likely bleeding internally.

We made him comfortable on an electric blanket (his body temperature was dropping) and gave him pain medication. By Saturday night, he had started to perk up. By Sunday, he was himself again ... and by that, I mean, swatting at the dog, begging for wet food, smacking our other cat around and perching himself on my now-very-sensitive belly and chest. The vet thinks that his tumor stopped bleeding and he reabsorbed a lot of the blood he lost over the weekend. But we're by no means out of the woods. He will probably start bleeding internally again soon.

We're having some tests run early next week. Our vet gave us a much more reasonable price to figure out what's exactly wrong ... $600 v. $3000 ... hmmmm. I wish she had given us that option before we took him to the kitty ER.

The prognosis:

If it's a tumor that can be removed along with his spleen, he has a good chance of living for several more years until the cancer catches up to him ... if it is indeed a cancerous tumor.

So, rumors of Stu's demise are premature, if not exaggerated.

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