Thursday, 8 May 2008

Cat Trouble...

First the car, now the cat...

Sylvester's eye looked a little odd a while back... However, I couldn't see anything obviously wrong, and he didn't seem listless, or in pain. I concluded that he'd probably had a run-in with one of the neighbourhood cats and come off a little the worse for wear.

And then, about a week or so ago, I thought that his right pupil looked different... but Sylvester didn't take kindly to being stared at. He still didn't seem to be in pain, and he was eating plenty. I wondered if he'd had a stroke, and steeled myself for the inevitable decline...

...and then yesterday I saw a big, black "shadow" appear over his eye. From one angle it just looked like his pupil, and then it moved over the iris. I decided that this was one for the vet.

I managed to get the last free appointment slot for this evening. I needed to go to Bluewater first, to sort out a mix-up with my contact lenses, but figured that I could just about get back home in time to scoop up the cat, stuff him in the kitty-carrier, and dash straight back out again.

This required military precision and planning. I was counting on him being greedy enough to greet me when I arrived home. He was. My first move, after greeting him was to lock the cat flap. He may be fat and indolent, but he can still move pretty smartly when he wants. Next was the super-sneaky retrieval of the kitty-carrier. I opened it, lined it with a towel, and positioned it carefully. Only then could I approach the cat, scoop him up - ostensibly for pre-feeding cuddles - and then try to get him into the carrier.

Why is it that a normally four-legged feline suddenly seems to sprout legs when one approaches a kitty-carrier? And I swear that Sylvester's tail became prehensile!

I did manage it, eventually. However, the car journey to the vet's surgery was a real ordeal (for me) as Sylvester mewed pitifully the whole way.

The vet was completely flummoxed. "I've never seen anything like this before," she admitted, and went to fetch a more experienced colleague: disconcertingly referred to as "the eye specialist." I had visions of having to sell the car in order to pay for the cat...

The senior vet knew exactly what was wrong: a corneal sequestrum. The exact cause is unclear, but it can result from some injury or irritation to the eye which results in a patch of the cornea dying. The dead tissue can slough away, and may leave an ulcer. However, the vet thought that, as the condition sometimes sorted itself out, it was worth trying a fortnight of treatment with an antibiotic cream for Sylvester's eye... though if there was no improvement, he would probably need surgery, maybe to remove the eye completely.

So, spare a thought for the two of us... for Sylvester, that he recover without the need for surgery, and for me, that I manage to retain some of my fingers after a fortnight of trying to apply ointment to the eye of an uncooperative cat...

6 comments:

gemoftheocean said...

Yikes! Poor you. Giving a dog a simple pill is hard enough, having to do eye ointment for a cat will be living hell! Hope you both pull through okay.

Jeffrey Smith said...

What a shame. He has such beautiful eyes.

Liam said...

I completely sympathesise, one of my cats back home occasionally requires eye drops to stave off the frequent eye infections to which she is prone.

Small though she might be, she requires about three people to restrain her adequately. The whole experience is traumatic for everyone involved.

I think that some industrious person should develop a 'kitty-straight jacket' for the administration of medicines to stubborn felines.

Best of luck with the cream.

teacher.paris said...

Best wishes!

Redtabby said...

Ha, ha, I have been through the cat carrier tactics, too. I will keep you and Sylvester in my prayers.

Kasia said...

I think that some industrious person should develop a 'kitty-straight jacket' for the administration of medicines to stubborn felines.

It's not necessary - take a towel and "burrito" him (wrap him up in it). It's not ideal, but if getting a cat into the carrier is hard, imagine getting same cat into a straitjacket! :-)

My cats are rather stupid when it comes to the carrier. I put it out the night before, so they go check it out, and then the day of I just scoop them up and slip them in before they know what's happening. On the rare occasions when I'm running behind and take out the carrier the day of, they are curious and go to investigate it...

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