Saturday, August 15, 2009

Bionic Tigger No More

Figured it was time for another Tigger update. My last post about her condition was on my birthday, I think. Since then, she has continued to improve and improve. Everyone who saw her when she was so desperately sick and then sees her now is just astounded. She really is returning to her old self, little by little. By the time we left her at the vet to go down to Brunswick and Savannah, we were not giving her any food at all through her tube. She was completely sustaining herself by mouth. She had also gained over a pound and was up to 11 lbs even, which is right where the vet thinks she should be. We picked her up August 2, and after discussing it with Dr. Hochel, we decided to leave the tube in for another week or so, just to make sure she was stable. We also kicked her out of our room to make sure she would be okay mixing with the other cats again. That first week back at work after being gone was insanely busy, and I was not able to monitor every bite she ate as I had been. She seemed to be doing well, but it is so hard to tell with cats.

Her recheck visit was Monday afternoon, the same day Luke started Pre-K. If everything was okay, they would take out her tube! Stressed? Me? Why would you say that? LOL I was really concerned that her weight had not stayed the same, even though she looked okay. Turns out, she had even gained just a smidge (half an ounce), and her jaundice (the yellow tint to her skin) had decreased dramatically. They pulled the tube out, and she didn't even need stitches. She is the bionic Tigger no more! She also wasn't nearly as shaved under her red neck bandage as I expected her to be, so she looked great. Here she is with Kathleen, the tech who cared for her each time she was hospitalized, and Dr. Hochel, who has worked tirelessly to try and get her well. Apparently, all of her efforts have finally paid off!

The plan now is to try and wean Tigger off the steroids. She is to stay on her "one dose a day" routine for another week, then we are to drop to every other day and see how she does. We'll do that for a month or so, and if she is still eating and behaving normally, we will stop it completely. If we're lucky, whatever it was that was ailing her will have corrected itself, and she won't have to be on the steroids for the rest of her life. If at any time after changing doses, she tapers off eating or starts behaving as if she is ill again, we just go back to the previous dose level. They will check her again in October.

She's doing great, though. The snoring that had gotten insanely loud (as in, people could hear her over the phone while I was working, and she was in a different room!) ceased immediately, so it was indeed related to the tube. She is again jumping up on the desk to await her goodnight pets, something she hasn't done for about a month. She is showering us with looks of disdain. She is also back to being in the way when you try to do things which, though annoying, is a good sign. "I'm sorry, were you trying to type? But the keyboard is such a comfy place to relax." LOL The best sign so far? Bengal hissed at her a few days ago, and she hissed back! Our spunky kitty has returned, and we couldn't be happier.

Currently feeling: thrilled to have Tigger back to herself


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