Things I Did On My Summer Vacation #5 Resumed Treating My Cat For Diabetes

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Zellouisa was about to come off insulin about 5 years ago after having been on it for about a year. Moving to a low-carb Fancy Feast diet did the trick last time. Unfortunately, Aremid’s health has taken precedence over the past year, meaning I’ve been putting out dry food (loaded with carbs) easily accessible to Aremid so he could gain some weight, as well as any Fancy Feast he’d eat (gravy varieties add a bunch of carbs). Z was losing a lot of weight, too, I noticed, and she, like Aremid, was drinking a lot of water.

She wound up saying at the vet’s overnight after having some vomiting following her initial visit. In all, she was at the vet’s for three straight days. Lots of tests, lots of $ spent. Her insulin was high, and she had a UTI. (That rhymes!)

So she’s back on insulin. Surprisingly, she likes getting the shots. Zellouisa will actually come to me when I open the fridge. I do pet her a lot afterwards. All in all, she’s been a heck of a lot more affectionate since that overnight stay at the vet’s.

Feline hyperthyroidism update

Aremid was not happy to visit the vet today, but I needed to get him a check-up. He weighs just 7 pounds, 10 ounces, about the same as he was a couple of months ago, but down half a pound from six months ago (and down about three pounds from where he was for about a dozen years). He hasn’t gotten any worse, so the vet thinks if I’m just more vigilant about giving Aremid his methimazole pills, he’ll put a little weight back on.

This update is really just an excuse to post a video of a cat having a miserable time at the vet…

And a photo of Aremid hiding under the exam room sink…

Herman blogging

Herman on the way to the vetIt’s been over six weeks since I blogged Herman pics?

Well, I took him to the vet Friday because he hasn’t been finishing his kibble over the last few couple of weeks. He seemed to be in a lot of pain when I inspected his teeth. When I inspected his teeth, some of them looked like they were in terrible shape. I figured that it was hurting him to eat.

(Herman on the way to the vet)

Herman at the vetIt turns out that his teeth are in pretty good shape, structurally. He’s got some significant plaque build-up, but the vet didn’t think his teeth have anything to do with his recent lack of appetite. Furthermore, even though I’ve felt like Herman has lost a ton of weight over the last few months (because I’ve intentionally reduced his food intake), he only lost three pounds since his last vet visit. At 60 pounds, the vet thinks he still has six pounds to go to get to his ideal weight. So, his recent habit of leaving a bunch of food over may not be such a big deal, after all.

(Herman at the vet)

Herman content 2010.05.29(Herman content at home tonight)

Old age

On top of the laundry closet door

(Aremid in 2000)

His days of jumping on top of doors are over. I guess they’ve been over for a couple of years now.

What’s pathetic now is that I’m observing him missing jumps on to desks and tables that are only three feet off the ground.

My 14-year-old guy isn’t going to get his 4-year-old body back. Poor guy. Needier than ever. But as sweet as ever.

(Aremid in 2010)

Feline Hyperthyroidism Update

Aremid had his thyroid levels checked at the vet yesterday, and they were “great”, according to my super-vet, Dr. Wendy. I had been worried because he didn’t seem to have gained much weight over the past couple of months, and, in fact, he only gained four ounces. Aremid used be a 10-11-pound cat, and now he’s under 9. But Dr. Wendy says he’s fine, and approaching 14-year-old, he’s going to be a bony cat; that’s all. Yay, Aremid.

Dr. Wendy Simpson, by the way, owns the Morrisville Cat Hospital. Why do I go all the way to Morrisville? Because Dr. Wendy’s the best health care provider I’ve ever seen, regardless of species specialty. I go lots of miles to go to Morrisville, but she’s always gone the extra mile with Aremid and Zellouisa, and I feel very fortunate to have my senior cats’ health in her hands.

Repeat Aremid video from April 2008:

Senior pet drama

Thirteen-year-old Aremid may be approaching the end of his life. I am wondering if I am being irresponsible by not taking him to the emergency vet.

Over the past 48 hours, he’s spent most of his time under the bed. He has rarely spent time there in the past. Typically, he will enthusiastically come to me when I call him. He’s remained stoically in meatloaf position under the bed when I have tried to coax him. Perhaps the most worrisome sign is that, when I have managed to get him out from under the bed, he seems to have absolutely no appetite. The treats which, in recent weeks, he had been devouring when placed in front of him, he now merely sniffs at.

He has supposedly had hyperthyroidism, but medication has not led to a needed weight gain recent months. However, he’s still been active, still getting to the top of the bookcase on occasion for food, still engaging in random sprints around the house.

Perhaps I’ll give it one more night and bring him to the emergency vet in the morning. Of course, I’ll feel awful if I’ve waited too long.

Perhaps it’s just screwy thinking on my part, but I’d so much rather he pass away at home then be put to sleep at an emergency vet clinic. But if he’s hiding under the bed, he’s probably very uncomfortable, and I’m prolonging his pain.

I know that pet illnesses that lead to loss of life can come on suddenly. 48 hours is probably 24 hours too long to have waited.

But I’m also not sure if the emergency vet would give him the best care. I think I have one of the absolutely best cat veterinarians there is, Dr. Wendy Simpson of Morrisville Cat Hospital. I’m thinking that I’ll simply drop Aremid off there on Monday morning.

Aremid (Jun 2009)
Aremid tonight, briefly coaxed out from under the bed