Over the years I have become a bit of a ‘spot the symptoms early and go see a vet’ than a ‘let’s wait and see how he is in the morning’ type of pet parent. I will seek a 2nd or 3rd opinion or request a referral to a specialist if I feel I need to. I need to understand what is happening. I need to feel confident of the person I am entrusting with my pet’s life. I will do my research. I will ask questions….Yup lots of them!
I was never always like this though. Let me go back some years ago when I was much younger and my cat “Kimba” began inappropriately toileting in the house. This was very unusual behaviour for her so I took her to see a local vet. After a physical examination the diagnosis of ‘she is just being a naughty cat’ was established. To curb this unwanted behaviour Clomipramine (Clomicalm) was prescribed. I was not convinced this was the case for Kimba, though reluctantly accepted the diagnosis and treatment. I figured the vet knew best. After a couple of days on the medication Kimba stopped eating and toileting completely.
I rushed her back to the vet, her bladder was full to the size of a tennis ball. A catheter was inserted to provide immediate relief. However, every time the catheter was removed her bladder would block again. A number of blood tests, urine samples and ultrasounds were taken. The result: “unremarkable”. Kimba continued to deteriorate rapidly over the following days. 7 days in care, the vet confessed they could not determine what was wrong. Her body was shutting down. They could not offer Kimba any other treatment – they were at a loss. There was nothing more they could do.
My beautiful girl Kimba crossed the rainbow bridge in 2000 at just 6 years of age. So very young for an otherwise healthy cat. I have never been able to understand or accept why this happened. Should I have gone to the Emergency Department? Why did the vet not suggest going to emergency or a specialist? Why did I not think to ask for this? If I did, would Kimba have survived? I ask myself these questions all the time.
Sadly, I will never know the answer to these questions. As a result of that heartbreaking ordeal I learnt 5 very valuable points that I stand by when it comes to my pets:
1. It is important to find a vet that you feel you can trust. They must really listen to you.
2. Do not be afraid to seek a 2nd or even a 3rd opinion or ask to see a specialist.
3. Trust your instincts, for there is no one that knows your pet better than you do.
4. If you feel something is wrong go to the Emergency Department. Do not delay.
5. Never feel guilty for protecting your pet. They only have you to speak for them.
Because of Kimba I was able to save three of my pets from very real life threatening conditions. Corey during an Addisonian Crisis, Amber when she became extremely unwell from HGE and finally Indy when he developed with Meningitis.
They survived as a result of early diagnosis and treatment in Emergency Care.
Author Bio: Nikki is pack leader at Pressplay Pets, a blog for the modern age pet parent interested in health & care, news, reviews & personal accounts of unconditional love & at times heartfelt pain of pet parenting. She is also proud mum to cute and cheeky Papillons ‘Amber’ and ‘Indy’ and one crazy Rainbow Lorikeet named ‘Ralph’!
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Pressplay Pets a blog for the modern age pet parent interested in health & care, news, reviews & personal accounts of unconditional love & at times heartfelt pain of pet parenting!