I took Piss-Piss to the vet this evening, and by coincidence I now happen to have browsed across a rather disturbing vet-related article here.
I think Piglet, Piss-Piss and I are very lucky in our vet. Having liked him when I first took Piglet along for a checkup after collecting her from Linconshire, I’ve tried to see him each time I’ve needed to go since. He’s a friendly and apparently sensible bloke, and good with my wee monsters. Piglet doesn’t like him since he squeezed her anal glands, but she loved him before that and it really wasn’t his fault…
I think it’s important to try to stick with a good one, once identified, as vets can vary widely even within the same practice. I’d booked Puss-Puss in to see my favourite vet when I took her for a checkup after first collecting her from Daddy’s place, but for some reason I was directed to another one instead. It seemed rude to refuse to see her, and so I went in. I wouldn’t another time, though. I’m sure she meant well, but she was much younger than the bloke that Piglet and I see, and she immediately told me to switch Piss-Piss to dried food from Felix; completely ignoring/failing to appreciate (although I’d explained) that PP had just lost her home and carer, moved in with a dog, had always eaten canned food and had only one tooth. WTF? The vets are all very well qualified academically, these days, but some of them seem sadly deficient in the common sense department.
Anyway, Mr D this evening took a look at PP and suggested that I should take her in on Friday so that he can remove the worst of the mats from her coat. I rang to enquire about it last week, having failed to be able to get them out myself, but the nurses on the phone didn’t have the patience to bear with my anxiety about taking a cat of uncertain age–but almost certainly over 10–along for a procedure that they said would require a sedative. In the end I didn’t take her, and decided to take her for a consultation with Mr D instead.
This evening Mr D said he’d like to take the knots out himself (what a relief!), and that he’d give PP a very light sedative, if needed, and do it over the course of the day, 10 minutes at a time. He also suggested some blood tests because PP’s gums are inflamed (I’ve noticed that she’s been off her food a bit), and apparently in older cats that can be an indication of kidney failure. If it turns out that she needs dental work then he’ll ring me and will be able to do it on the day. I’m hoping that this time on Friday evening PP will be feeling a great deal better, without those painful tangles in her coat and on the way to a less painful mouth.
Also, Piglet has a condition known as ‘reverse sneezing’, it seems. Quite suddenly she begins to make a choking noise, and at first I was worried that there might be something stuck in her throat. Over a period of months, though, Mr D has looked into it carefully and cautiously, quite clearly wishing to avoid the trauma to Piglet that would be involved in invasive tests performed under anaesthetic. He says he’s sure it’s simply the condition mentioned above, which isn’t dangerous, and so we’re not going down the invasive tests route unless something changes. When I compare his approach with that of the vets seen by many other dog owners I’ve spoken to, though, I reckon he’s fairly exceptional. Many of them seem to be keen to get pets booked in for traumatic, expensive and quite possible unnecessary procedures at the drop of a hat.
So let’s hear it for good vets! They seem to be thin on the ground (thank God I don’t live in Formby any more! I don’t even want to *begin* to describe the way the vet there treated my cat, Willow, in the months that led up to her death from a brain tumour), so I reckon we should celebrate them when we find them.
Thank you, Mr Darby. Piglet, Piss-Piss and I all think you’re the bee’s knees ♥