First things first. Thank you all for your wishes and thoughts while Bailey was enduring her visit to the cat hospital. She is laying next to the computer on the table as I write this, and I think she appreciated all who wished her well.
Secondly, the clinical aspect of what happened. I took her in because she had lost some weight, and wasn’t eating or drinking enough. In retrospect, I tell myself, I should have taken her in earlier, but didn’t.
Now then, they first looked at a Complete Blood Count, along with a chemistry panel, and it showed them exactly what her problem was, kidney disease.
When I met with her doctor, she showed me the numbers, and I felt like I’d been there before. The CBC is the same thing they do with humans, but the ranges on everything are different for cats. What is clear, is that when a range is exceeded, they see the problem.
With Bailey, her Creatine and BUN numbers were above the range. Those numbers are key indicators of kidney function, something I learned a long time ago when reading Joanie’s blood work numbers. In Joanies’ case,for instance, her Creatinine was high enough for several years that they wouldn’t give her contrast when they were going to do a CT scan because the contrast itself would be hard on the kidneys.
I went through all of Bailey’s numbers they found on the first day, and after they had spent well over a day and a half giving her an IV and flushing her system, and getting her to eat, they checked her numbers again, and this time they were within an acceptable range, giving me some measure of comfort.
So, right now, on the Doctor’s recommendation, I am trying to get her on a kidney friendly mix of food, and so far she seems to have taken to it. Since she got home last night, she has been eating well, and that gives me some hope that we can control the progression of any problems. Even Brandy seems to have a taste for the same food, which can’t but help her as well. I didn’t know until today that kidney problems are fairly common in house cats, and Siamese are one of the breeds mentioned in the list.
Now then, as to my feelings around this event. This is not the first time I have taken a cat to the vet, and had to leave her there. In 2006 I had to take Muffin to the vet after they found a severe infection. That was about the same time that Joanie was going through a difficult time, and so while I loved that little fur ball, my main concern was Joanie, and how she would deal with the fact we would have to put her down. I wrote about the loss of both Muffin and Peaches in Where The Popsicles Are, and how Bailey and Brandy came to our home.
This time, dealing with a sick kitty was different for me, and harder. One of my friends on FaceBook saw it. Laurie Kaldor-Bull wrote on one post: “I’m sure that part of your suffering now is remembering.”
She was right.