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Vet Fees...


crazy-tiger

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I have a cat... 8 years old, never had a problem in her life, friendly but shy, curious as all hell. A lovely little thing and a joy to have around.

 

Until about 3-4 weeks ago... when she suddenly stopped eating. No warning, no signs of anything up... just stopped eating overnight.

 

 

Well, we tried changing the food... different flavours, different brands, changed from dry food to pouches, even putting down fresh-cooked bits of chicken meat. Nothing really worked... she'd have a couple of bits, then walk off and not touch it again.

 

Things came to a head Tues evening when we noticed just how thin she'd become... she'd lost about 30% of her weight in those few weeks and was looking, quite frankly, like a zombie cat. So, off to the vets... only it was after normal hours, so it's the Emergency Vet. £98 just to see the vet! Then, £85 for some blood tests, £11 for a enema, and £5 for some laxative just in case she's just constipated... almost £200 in one go! :eek:

 

Fast forward to Friday afternoon... cat's been vomiting whenever we've administered the laxative, still not touching food, getting worse by the hour... so I figure since she's drinking, maybe a bowl of gravy would help get a little nutrition into her. Hey, couldn't hurt... could it?

 

Well, she attacked that bowl like she'd not seen food for a month... within just a couple of hours she was perking up a little, but it was back to the vet to see what the tests showed. Off we go, making sure it's during normal hours this time... £33 later, I've got some rehydrating fluid, a cat with a couple of antibiotics injected into her, and a "bring her back tomorrow!!" note in my wallet.

 

All the way through last night, every 15 mins or so, me and Xaru were having to force some of this fluid down the poor cats throat, for about 6 hours... it would have been all night long, but about 2 am we noticed that one of the cats canines had snapped at the gumline... and it suddenly became very obvious indeed just why she'd stopped eating. :Doh:

 

Anyway... back to the vet today, point out the tooth, mention how she was going for the gravy like a starving cat... and now she's booked in for an extraction Monday. And this time it'll cost around £150. :twitch:

 

 

Over £400 and we could've saved half of that if we'd only noticed the tooth in the first place. :vent:

 

 

 

 

Oh, and did I mention I have to take the cat to the vets at 8am Monday? I don't normally get up until 11!! I'm going to be fucking knackered...

 

 

*edit to add* When I say we noticed the tooth, it was Xaru... mainly because she was the one shoving a syringe full of fluid down her throat while I was clamping the cat down from behind.

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Oh, man. That sounds horrible for both you and your kitty. She's lucky to have people who care about her.

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If I could find some decent insurance plan that was reasonable I would go for it, just haven't found one yet. I have a cat who is 10 months old now.

 

Last summer had to have my 13 year old cat put down.. a very difficult experience. I shelled out $900 just for the diagnosis. Vet bills are very high. That makes the decision whether or not to treat that much harder when the proposed treatment is over a thousand dollars more and may or may not work.

 

Sorry crazy tiger, that sounds like a very difficult episode, but at least the problem was one that could be fixed with some good probablility of success.

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Shudder. That brings back some unpleasant memories.

 

About eight years ago, we moved into a new house, and with her routine interrupted, our cat went on a hunger strike.

 

I just naively thought that when she got hungry enough she'd start eating and everything would be fine. After a few days, she started seeming like she was really ill. We went through a similar ordeal, right down to the emergency vet and all (our cat was also the same age then as yours is now, BTW). Unfortunately for her (and also us), the diagnosis turned out to be Feline Hepatic Lipidosis, or "Fatty Liver." It's a rather dire condition resulting from the cat's liver's relative inefficiency in processing the influx of fat cells which floods the liver when the cat stops eating.

 

The emergency vet kept her at his office on IV fluids until she stabilized and the regular vet opened. Then the vet surgically implanted a tube into her throat, and I had to force feed her through the tube using a syringe once we got her back home until she was sufficiently recovered. She needed a blood transfusion before it was all over, and the vet prepared us that there was no guarantee that she would survive. Oh, and yes, I don't remember exactly how much the whole ordeal cost, but I do remember that it was really obscene. We were lucky--she's still alive today, an old cat. It certainly educated me on the importance of prompt veterinary care if your cat suddenly stops eating.

 

I'll bet that for sure your vet at least considered and checked for Feline Hepatic Lipidosis when s/he first saw the cat. Be very glad that the cat didn't develop this condition!

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Sounds a lot like what happened to my Mogu. Fortunately chinese vets are a lot cheaper than in the west, or I don't know if he would still be here today.

 

 

When he was a ten week old kitten, he contracted a disease on his paws that made them swell to 3 times their normal size and start bleeding. Happening on such a tiny kitten, I thought for sure he was a goner. The vets were puzzled: they cleaned up his paws, applied some antibiotics, and bandaged them, but he would chew off the bandages the first chance he could and start chewing his paws which would make them worse. After several days of no progress, he stopped eating, started to loose weight and hair. He was starting to look really bad and was becoming listless, and I was really weighing the risk and possible benefits of continuing his medical treatment. I just couldn't imagine a tiny kitten would have the strength to bounce back, he really looked like he was past the point of no return.

 

After several days of research on the internet, I finally had a possible breakthrough: His symptoms closely resembled an obscure vet forums posting where a cat contracted a fungus infection of the paws.

 

My kitten had athlete's paw. Which almost killed him. Which was misdiagnosed several times by a team of "trained" vets.

 

 

I went to the pharmacy, bought a Tinactin-type topical fungicidal product, and applied to paws and bandaged (ever try to bandage the paws of a 10 week old kitten?). Two days later, his feet started to heal and I didn't have to force feed him anymore, he started his present-day habit of eating voraciously. And to look at his paws today, I can't imagine they're the same ones that were a bloody swollen mess 4 years ago.

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I'd talk to the ER vet clinic... they really should have caught that! Poor kitty... Maybe they'll waive some of the fees.

 

Pet insurance isn't all that common here in the US except for those who are well-to-do. I don't have any for my pets. I have a small savings account for them if something happens, but it wouldn't be enough to cover an expensive diagnosis that requires payment all at once. If one of my cats got diabetes or renal failure, I would be able to afford that, but probably not cancer treatment or major surgery.

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Well, some good news at least... we've been trying her on small slivers of boiled white fish so there's very little chewing and she's been wolfing it down. It's painful to hear the rasping the tooth makes as it grinds at strange angles against the other teeth, but it's getting some proper food into her, which is the main thing.

 

One side effect of this is she's stopped doing her "hide from everything" routine, and is currently laying on my desk in from of my keyboard, partly over my left wrist. (she's rocking side to side as I type and seems to loving it :) ) She's still thin as hell, but she's fleshing out a bit... she still looks like a victim of anorexia, but not as bad as before.

 

Anyway... 9 hours time and she'll be in the vets again, being prepared to have that tooth removed... along with a drip to get some more fluid and nutrition into her.

 

 

 

 

And now I've rocked her about posting this, I think she needs some more TLC to make up the "no food from 7pm" edict the vet gave us.

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Well, some good news at least... we've been trying her on small slivers of boiled white fish so there's very little chewing and she's been wolfing it down. It's painful to hear the rasping the tooth makes as it grinds at strange angles against the other teeth, but it's getting some proper food into her, which is the main thing.

 

One side effect of this is she's stopped doing her "hide from everything" routine, and is currently laying on my desk in from of my keyboard, partly over my left wrist. (she's rocking side to side as I type and seems to loving it :) ) She's still thin as hell, but she's fleshing out a bit... she still looks like a victim of anorexia, but not as bad as before.

 

Anyway... 9 hours time and she'll be in the vets again, being prepared to have that tooth removed... along with a drip to get some more fluid and nutrition into her.

 

 

 

 

And now I've rocked her about posting this, I think she needs some more TLC to make up the "no food from 7pm" edict the vet gave us.

 

Ah, the poor dear. I hope everything goes well at the vet's tomorrow. It sounds like she will be well again fairly soon.

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I have a cat... 8 years old, never had a problem in her life, friendly but shy, curious as all hell. A lovely little thing and a joy to have around.

 

Until about 3-4 weeks ago... when she suddenly stopped eating. No warning, no signs of anything up... just stopped eating overnight.

 

 

Well, we tried changing the food... different flavours, different brands, changed from dry food to pouches, even putting down fresh-cooked bits of chicken meat. Nothing really worked... she'd have a couple of bits, then walk off and not touch it again.

 

Things came to a head Tues evening when we noticed just how thin she'd become... she'd lost about 30% of her weight in those few weeks and was looking, quite frankly, like a zombie cat. So, off to the vets... only it was after normal hours, so it's the Emergency Vet. £98 just to see the vet! Then, £85 for some blood tests, £11 for a enema, and £5 for some laxative just in case she's just constipated... almost £200 in one go! :eek:

 

Fast forward to Friday afternoon... cat's been vomiting whenever we've administered the laxative, still not touching food, getting worse by the hour... so I figure since she's drinking, maybe a bowl of gravy would help get a little nutrition into her. Hey, couldn't hurt... could it?

 

Well, she attacked that bowl like she'd not seen food for a month... within just a couple of hours she was perking up a little, but it was back to the vet to see what the tests showed. Off we go, making sure it's during normal hours this time... £33 later, I've got some rehydrating fluid, a cat with a couple of antibiotics injected into her, and a "bring her back tomorrow!!" note in my wallet.

 

All the way through last night, every 15 mins or so, me and Xaru were having to force some of this fluid down the poor cats throat, for about 6 hours... it would have been all night long, but about 2 am we noticed that one of the cats canines had snapped at the gumline... and it suddenly became very obvious indeed just why she'd stopped eating. :Doh:

 

Anyway... back to the vet today, point out the tooth, mention how she was going for the gravy like a starving cat... and now she's booked in for an extraction Monday. And this time it'll cost around £150. :twitch:

 

 

Over £400 and we could've saved half of that if we'd only noticed the tooth in the first place. :vent:

 

 

 

 

Oh, and did I mention I have to take the cat to the vets at 8am Monday? I don't normally get up until 11!! I'm going to be fucking knackered...

 

 

*edit to add* When I say we noticed the tooth, it was Xaru... mainly because she was the one shoving a syringe full of fluid down her throat while I was clamping the cat down from behind.

Here in the US, that could be a suit for negligence.

Last year I spent $300 USD on my cat to liposuction over a pound of fat from around his liver--he had quit eating, come to find out the cat food was slowly starving him to death and was putting fat on him. He is like a new kitty now. He is on a special cat food diet now.

Glad to hear yours is recovering.

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Yay... Just got a call from the vet. She's had the tooth out and is coming around from the anesthetic, sitting up and looking kinda dopy... so I'll be ble to pick her up in a couple of hours and bring her home. :D

 

It'll probably take a few weeks for her to recover fully from this, but the worst is over... now it's just down to plenty of TLC.

 

 

 

I know I sounded angry about the money in the op... and I was. (I still am a little, tbh) Thinking about it though, it's money I feel is well spent... if it means she's is ok, then it's worth it. All that really annoys me now is how it took us so long to realise it wasn't just her going off her food for a bit.

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I'm glad to hear she'll be OK. I know what a relief that is. I would do anything for my fur kids, too.

 

- Chris

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crazy-tiger, I'm so glad your kitty is going to be OK. I love cats and I'm almost ready to bring a new one into my life. My beloved kitty passed away in January after a long (19+ years) and very happy life and since then I've been living cat-less for the first time in 30 years. I miss having one or two around.

 

Any way, just wanted to add a little anecdote about one of my other cats who is no longer among us. Several years ago he developed some weird type of virus. Our regular vet couldn't figure out the problem, so he referred me to a specialist. The specialist was also stumped and referred us to yet another specialist about two hours away.

 

To make a long and expensive ($900+ US) story short, that specialist couldn't come up with a diagnosis either but managed to get the fever down. Then, he told me the best thing I could do was take the cat home where he would be comfortable and try to get him to eat, because, at that point, he would either recover or die depending on whether I could get him eating again.

 

Well, I tried everything I could think of to tempt him - including some rather pricey crabmeat – but all he would do is turn his face away. Then, long-time marijuana enthusiast that I am, I had an inspiration. I bought him a little sack of catnip, which he'd always enjoyed. He immediately showed interest, beat it up for awhile, etc. And then he promptly marched over to his food dish and settled in for a grand meal.

 

I figured that his drug of choice might induce the munchies, and I am happy to report it worked. I enjoyed his company for a dozen more years after that.

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Whew... she's home, eating, purring and very definitely making sure we know damned well she want's petting. It's hard to type when there's a cat taking up your desk, but I'm not complaining. :)

 

She's got a rather nasty hole where the tooth used to be... which is shocking, but only to be expected. The vet who saw her on Friday saw her again today in passing, and he was shocked at how different she was over the weekend. He'd recommended her being hospitalised, but did say that if they done that, they'd not have spotted the tooth... since they were focused on the back end and possible liver/bile problems. For me, any vet who's able to stand there and admit that they'd managed to get their recommendation wrong and also admit they'd have fucked it up if I'd followed their recommendation is a vet I can actually respect. Sure, it might well make me a bit wary of recommendations in the future, but admitting to a mistake rather than hiding it is a rare thing.

 

Still, alls well that ends well, and yon kitty is very happy having boiled cod for dinner... even if she is, as Xaru said, eating it like a cat that hasn't eaten properly for 4 weeks.

 

 

I'm gonna have to get the camera out, aren't I? I'm sure you guys would like to see who all the fuss is about... :)

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Ok... this is Pickle about a year ago... slightly plump, but common in that breed after being spayed.

Pickle-stairs.png

 

And... this is pickle about 5 mins ago...

Pickle.jpg

 

 

*goes off to give Pickle some more TLC... and ropes Xaru into it too!*

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Pickle looks like our Millie. We don't call her plump, just big-boned.

 

Recently she has been described as a bowling ball with legs.

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Pickle looks like our Millie. We don't call her plump, just big-boned.

 

Recently she has been described as a bowling ball with legs.

Bowling ball with legs huh? You're describing how Pickle was... both in looks and in weight. :D

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What a cute kitty! My wife and I have three fatties ourselves :-) Don Gato, Cola and Munch...all good cats. Would do anything for them. Looks like your cat will be enjoying the eating part of recovery very soon! Good luck!

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Hooray for Pickle! I'm glad that she's doing better!

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