We have had a stressful few days at Le Château.
The mascara worked like a dream when freshly applied but, when it wore off, we were back to square one again. And, when I came home on Wednesday night, the tail-chasing and throaty yowling were worse than ever, at which point I discovered that Louis Catorze had gnawed the crap out of his tail.
I called the out-of-hours vet, who told me to give him some Metacam and make an appointment for the next day. So Cat Daddy cancelled his morning’s meetings and took him in.
It turns out he had a minor tail injury which was concealed by his fur, and that’s what was troubling him. Unfortunately all his biting has both worsened this AND given him a new injury on a different part of his tail that was fine before.
Obviously this isn’t great, but it certainly beats the previous theories that he might have had a mental disorder (how exactly does one treat such a thing?) or that we were too boring (again, I have no idea how to fix this; 44 years on the planet and I’m not about to suddenly become fun now).
Despite being walloped with the quadruple whammy of antibiotics, painkillers, a shaved tail and Le dreaded Cône, Le Roi is reasonably content and comfortable now and, more importantly, he can no longer bite his tail. And, because he can’t use the cat flap whilst wearing Le Cône, I had the surreal experience of sleeping in the kitchen with him last night, so that I could let him in and out, and throughout the night I had the privilege of constant cuddles. (Cat Daddy had shut the bedroom door and Houseguest Matt was out, but still: CUDDLES! FOR ME!)
Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to send messages of support.
Whilst most people spend their birthday morning having champagne in bed, I spent mine reading the instructions of 2 different medications, preparing them and then delivering them to a struggling, kicking bastard of a cat. And, to add to the pressure, we had guests so it was all performed in front of a live audience.
To make matters EVEN worse: one medication requires a 0.3ml dose and the other 0.9ml; one is a simple pipette and the other an utterly suctionless syringe; one states “with food” which makes things tricky because Louis Catorze doesn’t have a specific meal time and, in fact, doesn’t even really like food; one smells like a toddler’s sugar-vomit (not that I have ever been unfortunate enough to experience this, but I imagine it’s just the same). I could go on but I won’t.
Eventually I did the deed, with only a moderate amount of medication spilling onto the kitchen worktop, onto my clothes and (possibly) into my cup of tea. My sister comforted me by remarking that I shouldn’t stress about getting every drop into the cat and that, if any of it managed to fly in his vague direction, that was an achievement. My 3-year-old nephew’s observation, once Le Roi had scarpered: “I think he liked it!” Erm, were you actually WATCHING, kiddo?
Louis Catorze headed straight outside for a mega-sulk in the rain – yes, he would rather be outside getting soaked than be anywhere near me. And, rather than offering to help shoulder the burden, Cat Daddy helpfully added, “I think you might as well carry on being the person that does the meds. I mean, he hates you anyway, so it won’t make any difference.”
Yesterday we took Louis Catorze to the vet because we were worried about the state of his poor, shredded chin.
Luckily he was in a docile and malleable mood because the builders had been over and he’d spent the afternoon trying to snuggle them, so Cat Daddy had no difficulty getting him into La Cage. And, whilst at the vet’s, other than a mild amount of whimpering, Catorze actually behaved himself. No staff were violently assaulted, no blood was drawn, no dignity was lost (this time).
He needed an antibiotic shot, as I suspected, but also a steroid shot to try and calm the itching and inflammation. I don’t like the idea of steroids – in fact, I don’t really like medication, full stop – but it was either that or increase his Atopica syringings to once a day for a few weeks. The process of trapping and medicating him every 2 days is quite horrific as it is, plus the results we’ve seen so far from Atopica are reasonable but not great, so we really didn’t see the sense in imposing further trauma on him (and us).
An alternative to the steroid injection, the vet said, was a course of steroid tablets. Louis Catorze and tablets? Non, non et trois fois non.
There was barely a murmur from Le Roi on the way home and, when we released him from La Cage, astonishingly, he trotted happily out with his tail up. He then spent the rest of the evening cuddled up on the sofa with us. (Cat Daddy just read that bit over my shoulder and muttered, “Yeah, but it’s not gonna bring that £60 vet fee back, is it?” I can’t argue with that.)
I really hope that being such a good boy is a sign that Louis Catorze is feeling better.