Long Night

September 25, 2006

My cat Nekko is in the animal hospital tonight. Upon coming home from my week's vacation in Oregon she wasn't her old self. She was limping a little in her hindquarters, and seemed very still. Normally when I sit at my desk she comes and sits on the floor beside me and reaches up with her paw to touch my arm. she'll do this until I reach down and rub her ears. She wasn't doing that. I wrote it off as being a result of having me gone for a week.

Today when I got home from work her odd behavior continued. She would go lay beside her water dish and not drink. Normally she is a prodigious drinker, lapping away nosily for several minutes. She just seemed muted and unhappy. At the suggestion of a friend I called a vet who makes house calls and managed to get an appointment for tomorrow at 5:00.

After making that appointment, however, my concern continued to grow. Nekko just wasn't being her usual self at all. She didn't seem to be in distress, but she wasn't well either. Eventually I called the 24-hour animal hospital and spoke to a technician there. Deciding that sooner was better than later I took Nekko to the hospital.

The initial report showed that she was a little dehydrated, and her temperature was down slightly. The doctor examined her and discovered that Nekko was constipated. As soon as she said that it all clicked into place for me. Between my being gone for eight days and a stranger emptying the litter, Nekko had become stressed and stopped going to the bathroom as a result.

They are keeping her overnight to put her on an IV to re-hydrate her, and to help her pass the blockage in her bowel. They are also going to do some blood work and get a urine sample. They are supposed to call me later yet this evening with the results from those tests.

I am hopeful at the moment that this is just a case of constipation and that, once that passes, her malaise will pass too. Still it is going to be a long night here without her.

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Mark H. Nichols

I am a husband, cellist, code prole, nerd, technologist, and all around good guy living and working in fly-over country. You should follow me on Twitter.