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cat sickness, ongoing

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cat sickness, ongoing

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Nona got sick last week. Couldn't immediately figure out for sure which cat it was, so we took her and Stumpy to the vet together. The tests showed a problem with Nona, none with Stumpy. The vet gave me Clavamox for the actual medical problem and advice about reducing stress, especially surrounding the litterbox. The stress was what the vet, uh, stressed most.

So. I got a second litter box set up again; I bought catnip; I bought laser pointers; I bought treats. I'm working both ends of the stress - trying to alleviate the stressors and introduce stress-busters at the same time.

It's not working.

Stumpy, I should mention at this point, is pretty much in kitty heaven. Yes, there was a horrible trip to the vet, but she was in ecstasies about the nip, she loves the treats, she is enthralled with the laser pointer - and for the last few days she's been getting my undivided attention for pets while I am in bed.

It's that last one that's a problem; the cause of it is that Nona won't come near me.

When we have to do something to her, she doesn't like it, sometimes even hates it - but what really makes it bad for her, far worse than anything being done to her, is the tension of the chase and capture beforehand. If I can catch her unawares, she gets over it almost immediately, but if I have to catch her, she is unhappy, and ANGRY.

She was comforted by my presence while we were at the vet's, but once she got home she hissed when I so much as walked by. Added to that, she has to be dosed twice a day, and it's just too frequent - now the badness is immediate and cumulative. She wasn't over the vet trip before I was traumatizing her again with her first home dose. She wouldn't come to me, so I had to chase her down. The next morning she came to me as usual in the morning, and I pet her some, but then I had to grab her to medicate her again. That wasn't bad, but again, too damned soon. At this point there's NO chance to do it without upset because she stopped coming up to me for affection at all two and a half days ago.

I have medicated her each day, working her capture with the minimum chase that I can, but when I held her for her two doses yesterday, I could feel that her whole body was locked up with tension. I believe she's far more stressed than she was when she went to the vet, and I have evidence to support this: the out-of-box accidents that were ended by the meds have been replaced by similarly out-of-box diarrhea, which was not a part of the problem before. It might not be her, but the odds of another cat developing a different but similar problem at almost exactly the same time as she got sick and has been massively upset seem slim enough that I feel comfortable assuming it is Nona.

Honestly, I have been fretting because of a selfish desire to retain her affections, but I continued the meds in spite of that because I am responsible for her care even if it makes her hate me enough to un-adopt me as her human. However, she's so high-strung that it seems like the harm this "care" is doing her is offsetting whatever possible good it's doing. I feel sick about it. I don't know what is the right thing to do.

I called the vet's office this morning. I got the go-ahead to skip her morning dose, and the promise of a later call with a more user-friendly solution. I'm waiting for that, and I may also ask gyades to take on the "capture and administer" aspect for the duration.

I'm not so arrogant as to say that she needs me - she lived just fine without me for years - but I know how much she likes getting attention from me, and she won't let anyone else near her to administer it. I was hoping she'd lax out and start letting people near her in general, but this small illness might be a huge setback in that process, especially if it puts me back outside her safety bubble, leaving her alone again. That makes me sad.
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