Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Farewell, Brody

 This is the last picture I took of Brody.  It was two weeks ago today.  I couldn't bear to take pictures of him wasting away.
This is the very first picture I took of Brody.  There are far too few pictures in between.

Brody's last vet visit was bad news and I didn't want to tell you that his temperature was 105.3 and he had fluid in his abdomen.  Luckily the fluid was where it was easily removed and Brody went back on Dex + B-12 and Lasix every day.  It didn't help.  By Sunday night, I knew that he was packing his bags for the Rainbow Bridge.  He didn't eat all day Monday and he had that sad. lost look in his eyes.  Monday night, he was waiting on the bed for me, just like he is in the picture. I cuddled up to him and started petting him and he got up on me in his favorite position, on my thigh with his head on my stomach.  I petted him until I fell asleep.  Sometime in the night, he left the bed, because when I woke up in the wee hours to pee, he wasn't there.  In the morning, I found him by the food in the computer room.  He had run away to the Bridge.  It was like he knew that he had to eat, but he couldn't do it.

I took the body into the kitchen on a kitty comforter and laid him down near Cissy's cave.  I wanted her to know what happened to him.  She came and sniffed over and over again, like she couldn't believe it.  I think all the kitties sniffed him at least once.  I called the vet to cancel his appointment, which was this afternoon.  After a while, I took his body to the vet to be cremated.  I brushed off a bunch of fur and put it in a plastic bag, because I knew that the private cremation was so much more expensive than the communal cremation.  Isn't it silly that after spending at least $5000 to keep him alive, I wouldn't spend $70 to get his ashes?  It's just the way I feel.  Everything that was the Brody I loved so much went to the Rainbow Bridge.  What was left was just a shell.  I can feed the other cats for a month on that $70.

I will order him a plastic tombstone from the company I get them from and get a solar light from the store and bury half his fur next to Austin. I'm crying too hard to see well, so I'll quite now.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Brody's Vet Visit

Karen Jo:  My blog was supposed to have a "Save Net Neutrality" banner just below the header today, but the code I copied didn't work.

Brody:  I went to the vet yesterday and it was good news.  My temperature has gone down to 103.5 from 104.  My weight has gone up from 6.7 lbs to 8.2 lbs.  Neither Mom nor the vet lady could figure out how I gained 1.5 pounds in one week.  I bet I know.  I eat whatever I want and just lie around most of the day.  There is no sign of fluid in my chest or abdomen.  I only have to have one shot every other day now.  I'm pretty happy about all of this and so is Mom.

Karen Jo:  I am very happy.  Brody might have diarrhea, but it's by no means certain.  He is getting a little Metronidazole in liquid form just in case.
Cissy:  Well, I don't have diarrhea any more.  Mom had to call the vet lady because I hadn't gotten any better by Saturday morning.  Half an hour after the vet lady called her back and told her to come pick up my meds, I pooped a mighty poop and proved that I didn't need any meds after all.

Karen Jo:  I picked them up anyway, because the vet lady was nice enough to tape them to the outside door after closing time.  I'll hang on to them.  Some other kitty might need them.  Brody won't eat the Forti-Flora.
Spyro:  I picked up spraying a bit from Horus.  I sprayed the wall by Cissy's new litter box and I sprayed Cissy's big cardboard box in the kitchen.  Then I quit doing it.  I did pee in Cissy's new litter box, but I did it the regular way.  I guess I got caught up in the kitty politics.  They seem to be dying down now.
Oja: I have almost given up cornering Cissy and making her scream.  It just doesn't seem like much fun any more.  I have that new kitten Tabitha to hiss at.
Rocio: I was watching the birds when I got this itch.  Ah, that's better.  I really got into it with Cissy the other day.  I don't know why.  I haven't bothered her since.

Bambino:  I dumped the toy bucket over so Tabitha would have more toys to play with.  Yeah, that's it.  She is a lot of fun.  She will pounce almost any cat.  She leaves Brody, Cissy and Oja alone.  She learns fast.
Horus:  I haven't bothered Cissy in ages.  It just doesn't appeal to me any more.

Karen Jo:  I am wondering if the calming spray is having an effect or the kitties just got bored with tormenting Cissy.  Whichever it is, I hope it lasts.
Julius:  Here I am showing off my side stripes.

Karen Jo: If any of you have wondered what I looked like, you can see me in the mirror.
Tabitha:  Boy, have I been exploring since the last time Mom posted.  I have discovered the living room.  Wow, it is big!  When I first ran into it, I stopped and did the kitten dance.  I arched my back way up and bounced around.  There is lots of room to run and play and rassle, rolling over and over.  There's lots of toys in here, too.  There's a neat box with holes in it and toys inside.  I am having so much fun!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Cissy's Vet Visit

Cissy: Mom made me go to the vet today, just because she found a little diarrhea on the kitchen floor.

Karen Jo: Any time I see something amiss with one of my FeLV+ kitties they go to the vet.  I'm really glad that  you are using your new litter box.

Cissy:  It's in the kitchen.  It's just my size and it's full of pretty crystals.  What's not to like?

Karen Jo: It turns out that you probably have stress-induced colitis.  It should go away in a few days.  To help it go away I'm spraying the calming spray on the seats of the chairs near your special spot.
Spyro: All these kitty politics give me a headache.  I'm just going to hang around on the smaller cat tree.
Oja:  And I suppose you are trying to blame me for Cissy's colitis?

Karen Jo:  You are the one giving her the most problems.  The vet surmised that you see her as a threat to your stature as Alpha cat.

Oja:  It's about time someone figured out that I am the Alpha around here.  How could that pint-sized house panther be a threat to me?

Karen Jo:  I figured it out that day you beat up Horus.  If she's no threat, will you please let her be?  She's terrified of you.

Oja:  She should be.  So should all the kitties in the house.
Rocio:  Ho-hum, politics again.  Think I'll take a nap.  It's been quite a while since I scared Cissy.

Karen Jo:  I would be really happy if you never did it again.

Bambino:  While Spyro is napping on top of the smaller cat tree, I grabbed the top of the tall cat tree.  I stay out of the politics around here.
Horus:  I am lying next to Cissy's new litter box.  Mom was clever.  She bought one that 's uncomfortably small for us bigger cats, including Oja.

Karen Jo:  I have a question.  Cissy's got diarrhea, so who left the pile on the blue rug by the door?

Horus:  Um, I don't know.  Maybe Cissy doesn't have diarrhea all the time.

Karen Jo:  It was an awfully big pile for Cissy.

Horus:  You don't take me out often enough.  I want out on my leash and harness every day.
Julius:  Know what?  Tabitha is really fun to play with.  She even knows how to rassle!
Brody: I am holding my own.  I don't seem any better or worse today.  Mom is always taking a picture of my shaved spots.

Karen Jo:  You always lie with your shaved spots up, so I don't have a choice if I take a picture of you lying down.
Tabitha:  I am finally brave enough to lie down without hiding first.  Mom got a decent photo of me at last.  She had to take it from a distance or I start moving all around again.  You can click on the photo to biggify it.  I don't think Oja likes me, either.  She hisses at me whenever she sees me.

Karen Jo:  Don't worry, Tabitha.  Oja does that to all new cats for at least two weeks.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Naughty Kitties

Spyro:  I am looking over the kitchen from on top of the refrigerator.  I am not a naughty kitty at all.  Well, I did run out the screen door when Mom thought I was safely asleep in the chair under the kitchen table. I went to my special spot in the yard and ate grass until Mom came and got me.  Later I barfed the grass up in the middle of the living room.  That's not naughty.  That's just normal for me.

Karen Jo:  You're right, Spyro.  You aren't really naughty.  There are some other cats here, though . . .
 Oja:  What are you looking at me for?  I'm grumpy, not naughty.

Karen Jo:  What do you call tormenting poor Cissy so much?  I picked a slightly blood-stained claw sheath out of your face this morning.  Why can't you just leave her alone?

Oja:  She's such an easy target.  I don't particularly like stinky mancats, but lady cats who are always screaming are worse.

Karen Jo:  You hiss at Tabitha, too.

Oja:  What did you expect?  I hiss at every new cat.
 Rocio:  Uh-oh, here comes Mom with her naughty cat list.

Karen Jo:  You were tormenting Cissy this morning, too.  All she was doing was lying on her cushion in the kitchen.

Rocio: Like Oja said, she's an easy target.

 Bambino: Mom woke me up with the camera yet again.  Sheesh!  I'm definitely not a naughty cat.

Karen Jo:  That's right.  You are a good kitty.  I appreciate how easily you have made friends with Tabitha.
 Horus:  Hmmm, I wonder what Mom is going to say to me.

Karen Jo: You have been a really good mancat lately, Horus.  You haven't even hissed at Tabitha.  You just sniff her whenever you meet; then you walk away.
 Julius:  I know I haven't done anything I shouldn't.

Karen Jo:  That's right.  On the contrary, you have been really nice to Tabitha.  It's so much fun to watch the two of you play chase.
 Brody:  I don't have the energy to be naughty.

Karen Jo:  You just spend all your energy in getting better, Brody.  Eat as much Elegant Medleys as you can.  You will be getting them for every meal from now on.

Brody:  Score!
 Cissy:  I think I'm in trouble.

Karen Jo:  You have been very naughty.  Care to explain?

Cissy:  I am upset that Brody isn't the same.  Some of the other kitties are mean to me.  I decided to just stay in the kitchen, but there isn't a litter box in here.

Karen Jo:  So that's why you used the recycle bin for your litter box and when I put a lid on that you used the floor?  There is a litter box just a few feet down the hall from the kitchen.

Cissy:  But it wasn't IN the kitchen

Karen Jo:  I got you a brand new litter box and put it in the kitchen, as much as I hate the idea of a litter box in the kitchen.  I got you the gel crystals, in case you decided you didn't like the Swheatscoop.  I hope that solves the problem.  Otherwise, you are going to the vet.  You might go anyway in case this change in your behavior means that you are sick.
Tabitha:  What's a naughty kitty?

Karen Jo: You don't have to worry about it.  How do you like having the door to your room open all the time?

Tabitha:  I love it.  I can go where I please, when I please and retreat back into my room when I have had enough excitement.  You know what, kitties?  There are dishes of food out there that are different than what I have been getting.  Yummy!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Brody's Vet Visit

 Brody:  I went to the vet again.  The only bad part is that thing stuck up where it doesn't belong.  All the fluid is gone from my chest, so I only have to get one shot a day.  Yay!  I feel good.  Look at me up here on the file cabinet.  The vet even gave me some food.  I just wish I didn't feel too tired to play all the time.

Karen Jo:  Brody's temperature is 104 and his weight is down to 6.7 lbs from 7.8 lbs last week.  The vet says that it's just a matter of time, but we will keep up the medications and hope for a miracle.  Brody feels so good because he all the fluid is out of his chest and he can breathe normally again.
 Tabitha:  This is the best photo Mom has been able to take of me so far.  I decided that I really like the lady, so I will call her Mom. Mom picked me up and took me on a tour of the house yesterday and showed me all the kitties here.  There are a LOT of them. I did exciting things today.  I came out of my room four times and met other kitties and explored.  There are a lot of litter boxes around here.  I sniffed and sniffed them.  I explored the bathroom and played with Bambino in the bathtub.  I met Julius and we played chase in my room.  We chased each other around the big chair and Mom laughed because it looked like I was chasing Julius.  I met Brody and we nose sniffed each other.  I met Horus and he sniffed and sniffed my behind.  I briefly met Oja and she hissed at me so I ran back into my room.  I met Rocio and he hissed at me a tiny bit, too.  I am back in my room now for the night, but I bet I will be out of my room tomorrow again, at least for a while.
Spyro:  All these goings on make me want a nap.  I haven't met the squirt yet, but I will.
Oja:  The tiny kitten is coming our of her room now.  I don't like it.  I just know she'll pester me.

Karen Jo:  She might not.  There are lots of other kitties for her to play with.
Rocio:  Tabitha might not be so bad.  I went into her room for a little bit.  She's pretty fearless when it comes to the rest of us.  Oja scared her, but Oja scares all of us.
Bambino:  I like Tabitha.  I hope she comes out for good soon.
Horus:  I am King of the Mountain on top of the cat tree today.  I don't know what to think of Tabitha.  She smells good.  She didn't try to smack me for being so personal.
Julius:  Hahaha!  I made Mom lie down on the floor to get a picture of me.  See how wide open my eyes are?  That's the signal that I am going to bolt if she comes any closer.  I like Tabitha.  She's fun to play with.
Cissy:  I have given up trying to get Brody to play with me.  Now when I want to play with another kitty, I go to Bambino or Julius, especially Julius.  This cushion under the chair is the safest place to nap.  Mom started wondering if I really dragged the cushion under the chair or if it ended up under here by accident and I just took advantage of it.  The other day Mom noticed that it had been moved under the table, then it was back under the chair and I was on it again.  Now she knows that I move it.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Brody Holds His Own

 Brody:  Why does Mom take my picture with my shaved spot showing? I'm just hanging in there, no better, no worse.  Mom keeps giving me my medicine and I try to get away from her sometimes, especially after the first shot when I see the second stabby thing come out.  I always get treats right afterward, so I don't go too far.  I have given up on trying to avoid the stuff squirted in my mouth.

Karen Jo:  Now comes the really hard part for me.  Brody has gotten back to being almost himself again.  Now, will the new medicine whip the FIP, or will Brody stay the way he is now until it attacks him again?
 Spyro:  I didn't get my picture taken today, so this is an older shot.  I'll leave the explanation for others.
This is what Mom calls Spyro's Spytower because I am the cat up here most often.  It's a great spot for looking outside and seeing everything that goes on in the living room.
 Oja:  I am on my throne again, watching over my domain.  I still play with the turbo track sometimes.  I have been chasing Cissy again.  Mom is about to give up coming to see what is happening when Cissy screams.  No cat is ever hurting her.
 Rocio:  I am watching the spectacle of Mom crawling around on the floor trying to get good photos.  That white bottle beside me is what Mom uses when Horus pees where he shouldn't.
 Bambino:  Mom was down on the floor, so I started to crawl into the ham-mick facing her. She got all set with the camera for me to stop moving, then I turned around and showed her my butt instead.  She had to wiggle around to get my profile.
Karen Jo:  Horus was a bad boy today.

Horus:  Mom was down on the floor taking pictures.  When it was my turn, she just turns to me and shoots.  When Brody's turn came she petted him and cooed to him and coaxed him to face her, giving him lots of attention.  I couldn't stand that, so I went over to the couch, turned around to face Brody and sprayed the couch. That'll teach her to give that little brat all the attention.

Karen Jo:  Brody needs more attention now because he is sick.  Even you have been nice to him.

Horus:  I still don't like it when he gets more attention than I do.

Karen Jo:  I had to stop the photo session and clean up the mess.  Then I couldn't remember if I had taken pictures of all the cats.  That's why Spyro and Cissy have older pictures today.
 Julius: Mom is getting better at reading my body language on how close she can get with the camera.  As soon as I turned my head to look at her she froze until I looked away again.  The birds are more interesting than she is.
 Cissy:  This is the visiting toddler's table with her crayon box behind me.  She hasn't been over in a long time, which suits me just fine.  I almost got Brody to play with me last night, but he gave me a really soft hiss and I went back to grooming him instead.
Tabitha:  I am getting to like the lady.  Breakfast time this morning I came out to greet her and let her pet me.   I even stayed out when she left and came back with the black box.  I'm all blurry because I am never still.  I like the lady's foot.  I got to play with Bambino twice today for a little while.  The lady lets him in, then goes away and lets us play.  She comes back in a little while and lets him out again.  I like Bambino.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Halfway House of the FeLV+ Kitties

Brody: I am taking an easy day today.  I'm not quite as active as I have been.  Mom puts it down to getting all busy this morning and not giving me my meds till afternoon.  I'm not acting sick or anything.  I lay down by the safe room door for a while, curious about Tabitha.  Now Mom has some stuff to say about what kept her busy this morning.

Karen Jo:  This morning I told Felines & Friends that I had a full house and couldn't take any more kitties.  The director asked me very nicely if I would consider becoming a halfway house for FeLV+ kitties.  That means I would allow them to list the kitties as adoptable and see if they could adopt some out to people who knew what they were getting into, so I would have room for more.  I accepted, though I would be sad to see any of my dear little ones go away.  I accepted for a few reasons.  Horus would be much happier in a house with fewer kitties.  If the kitties are adopted I wouldn't have to see them die.  I want to save as many kitties as I can.  It is quite possible that none of them will be adopted and things will just go on as they are now.  After all, I got into this because no one else would adopt Herman.  If any of them are adopted out, one of the conditions will be that they are to be returned to me if the adopters find that they don't really want them.
Spyro:  I do love the top level of the tall kitty tower.  Mom said this picture gave her a cuteness overload.
Oja:  This throw has a story behind it.  I like to make biscuits with my claws out on Mom's thigh.  Mom started putting this throw in her lap to protect herself.  I wouldn't get on her lap if the throw was there, so Mom put the throw on the floor next to the computer desk.  Now I lie on it often.  Score for me!
 Rocio:  This is the smaller cat tree.  Beside it is the curtain rod and the sheer curtains that one of us kitties tore down.  Mom hasn't gotten around to doing anything with it yet.
 Bambino:  At least I was awake when the camera came out today.  I got into the safe room and wouldn't come out, not even when Mom got out the treats.  Mom left me in there for a little while and Tabitha came out and played with me.  Mom says I get to go visit Tabitha for a little while every day from now on. Score for me!
 Horus:  Up on the pillow again.  It's the best nap place in the whole house.
 Julius:  Still won't let Mom get close to me with the camera.  I will let her get right up close enough to touch me now, but not when she has the camera.
Cissy:  Mom looked all over the house for me when it was picture time.  She was starting to get worried when she spotted me in this old cube.  Mom, we need a new cube.

Tabitha:  I came out of the closet today and let the lady pet me.  Twice!  She picked me up and I ran away again once she put me in her lap.  I played with another kitty who came to visit.  I like other kitties.  Mom brought in a black box (camera) and pointed it at me and I ran and hid.