Monday, March 06, 2006

A Little Bit Scary

Brief knitting content: I have finished knitting both legs of the baby jeans and have washed and dried them (in the dryer!!!). Next, I need to block them to size by ironing, embroider the pockets, etc., seam them up, and install the elastic. That last piece, about the elastic, is a bit intimidating to me, but my mom, the super-sewer, arrives for a visit tonight...

Now - what's scary (besides putting your knitting in the dryer and having to install elastic)?

Saturday, Simon suffered something like a minor stroke. He tried to walk towards me and fell to the right. He got up and it happened again. I immediately called my vet, but it was just after noon, and he was closed. The message suggested an emergency clinic, so I shoved Simon in the carrier and got there by 12:45.

Although they first suspected poisoning, which apparently is the most common cause of neurological problems in cats, they tested and found nothing. Once he found out that Simon has a heart problem, the vet changed track. He reminded my sister (who had met me at the clinic, and who is really Simon's human mommy) that for a cat to be treated with Lasix for seven years is almost unheard of. He was also totally freaked out by the size and shape of Simon's heart in the x-ray. (Simon had endocarditis in 1999 and his heart is permanently enlarged and oddly shaped. It's almost "heart-shaped" on the x-ray.)

In addition to having trouble walking, they also suspected that Simon couldn't see. His eyes worked, but his brain wasn't processing what he saw. He didn't respond to fingers or shiny things dangling right in front of him.

They kept Simon overnight. I went to visit him around 9:00. Simon recognized me, or at least recognized my voice, and purred when I held him and scratched his ears. Sunday morning, my sister and I went to visit him again and they said he was stable and he could come home, although of course he would have to see his own vet soon.

As soon as we were home, Simon walked out of his carrier. He was very happy to get out of it - after being on IV fluids all night, he had peed in the carrier as soon as he got in! Where's a litter box when you need one? He was still stumbling, but I was certain he could see. As the day progressed, I became convinced he could see. I don't know if he had actually been blind or if he just hadn't been interested in the stuff being dangled in front of him. After all, he is a cat.... He also began getting around better, and was able to jump up on the bed by himself. He did seem tired, but I'm sure the overnight at the clinic wasn't very restful! He also wasn't particularly interested in eating.

This morning we saw his regular vet, who says that the x-ray of Simon's heart is pretty much just like what it was the last time it was x-rayed, about a year ago. He says this episode is likely related to his heart problem. Simon is now on enalapril in addition to Lasix (he's like a little old man with his heart meds!). He's walking much, much better, although jumping is still problematic - earlier today he jumped for the back of my chair and fell off. Of course, he walked away like he had meant to do that! He's also learned to walk with his back legs a little farther apart, which helps his balance.

I stayed home with him today, even though I'm sure he would be fine without me and that Harley would watch over him. Luckily, I work with pet-owners so they understand why I needed to be here. One of my co-workers reminded me that meat-flavored baby food is tempting to sick kitties, so I'm going to go to the grocery store in a few minutes.

Simon says....

I'm feeling better now, but am somewhat concerned about where they shaved my arm for the IV. And don't get me started about what they stuck up my butt!

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