Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Boaz had surgery -- and will survive

In short: Boaz swallowed a penny-sized glass bead and had surgery to remove it. He's recovering at home now.

Apparently, cats can go for many days without food. Cathy left for Georgia on Thursday, and on Saturday Boaz threw up unexpectedly. None of the other cats were sick, so I just kept an eye on him. Cathy thought she expected Boaz to be ill for some reason. His appetite was good, he drank and played, so I thought nothing of it.

On Tuesday, I woke up and found more evidence of Boaz having been sick. Again, he seemed OK, was cuddly and ate well, so I just began to worry. On Wednesday, I made an appointment and asked Cathy's mom, Rhonda, to take Boaz to the vet... That eventing, Boaz seemed almost depressed, but still ate, yet was no longer playful, only cuddly.

Thursday, Boaz was seen by Banfield. Nothing seemed wrong to them, although Boaz seemed dehydrated to me. They suggested an X-ray and blood work, but didn't have a clue what could be wrong; no virus, no fever, just subdued behavior. I suggested he may have swallowed his bell (off his collar) but nobody expects cats to do anything like that. We took him home and locked him up for observation and to see if he would have a bowel movement.

Come Friday at noon, when I went home to check on Boaz, he has been alone for 24 hours, and no "deposits." He refused food and seemed obviously dehydrated. I got worried and took him in that afternoon and got the X-Ray and blood work done.

As soon as I saw the X-Ray, I immediately knew what I saw looking at; in Boaz' digestive tract was a rock the shape of a flattened burger bun. I recognized the size and shape as the decorative glass beads that we keep in some crystal vases. Boaz had swallowed the glass bead!

I got the estimate and approved the procedures. The vet had to keep Boaz overnight to rehydrate him before surgery, and to stabilize his potassium level. They weren't sure, but Boaz made it through the night and was much perkier, and I greeted him early Saturday morning, and about 4 P.M. after his surgery. I left him to recover again, overnight.

A nice nurse, Megan, let me in for a few hours on Sunday. When I saw Boaz again on Sunday he was almost his usual self; he was cuddly, sought attention, and kneaded my arm when I petted him. He was off the I.V. and obviously better, and groomed. I had to leave Boaz another night, but a doctor called me less than an hour after I left to say they fed him and he ate very well. I was very happy.

Monday morning, before work, I was able to spend another 15 minutes with him. I called at lunch and he had not had a bowel movement yet, but when I visited him for a few minutes at 2:30 P.M. he had done his dootie! They let me take Boaz home Monday night with special food.

Boaz is on special canned food and needs to wear an e-collar when he is unsupervised (to keep him from irritating his wound). He barely makes it onto the bed, but he slept with me this morning. Boy, did I get attached to him this last week!

Oh, I picked up every last bead and small, unattached object when I went home Friday. No more evil little beads around!

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