Happy Birthday – Now, go to the vet!

This is Murphy’s baby pigture, seated to the right of her sister Ruby

My nugget, Murphy, turned 4 years old on February 11th.

I noticed very tiny behavioral changes on Tuesday, so I decided to weigh her. She is 914 grams. In October, she was 980-990 grams.
Hmmph.

Murphy’s teeth are still good after her dental. Her heart is not as strong as they would like it to be. Her lymph nodes are either fatty, or enlarged. She has ovarian cysts.

The cysts are small, so we’re doing Lupron injections. Her blood sample was taken for CBC, and while it was spun in office, there is a very small layer of white cells. This was not enough to diagnose the lymphoma or do a smear with the microscope. If a precise needle aspiration could be performed – BAM – 100 percent certainty. If only. There’s also a huge chance your specimen is too clouded by fat cells. I should hear from them about the labs tomorrow.

Lymphoma is aggressive. Either she’s getting a follow up Lupron injection in 1 month, or she’s going to be wasting. The cancer would be treated with prednisolone and pain to be managed, accompanied by hand feeding to keep the gut moving. There is nothing really you can do to slow it, and the average expectancy is 1 month.

Right now we’re doing a short course of cisapride and meloxicam, simethicone, and Oxbow Critical Care formula, as well as upping her vitamin C with a liquid supplement.

4 1/2 months old

Drs Foster Smith is heading to Petco

I am affected by this change, because I sing praises to their line of cat furniture all the time. Some people thought it was weird that I would buy such costly pieces when cats are built to destroy things, but that’s the thing: TOMMY COULDN’T
Tommy is a large, slender guy, who does parkour. His first piece of cat furniture was $299. We gave it away when we moved apartments one year, but then we when got into a house, I bought it again. $199. That was over 5 years ago. We still have it.
A year or two ago I spent $169 on a new piece, because the one I bought from Unnamed Pet Supermarket was $75 and didn’t even last a year.

It’s like a constant struggle with a 4 year old child

What new thing can Tommy do today?

He’s 10 years old this year, but he is a cat, so these things happen – I understand.
What I don’t understand is how he comes up with these new scenarios in his imagination and athleticism months or even years after we have moved into a new rental home.

A year and a half into living at the last house, he started jumping on top of the curtain rod.
Living at the current home for now eight months, he’s been jumping on top of the entertainment center.
We keep collectibles on it for over 2 years now, as well as a flat screen television that’s mounted to it.

I don’t understand if it’s that I’m older now, or that he’s in the best health, but he’s making me really nervous about leaving him with friends overnight on Sunday because we have inspection on Monday. I’m afraid he’s going to ruin something, because he’s just Tom being Tom.

He used to be fat. We got over that. He used to spray for about a year. We medicated him for a year, and then took him off, and now he mostly sprays only in the litter box but that’s not 100% thing. He also had issues with struvites, cystitis, and surgery 2 years ago. We got over that, too.

Is leaving Tom with my friends for a short period of time going to create some rift?
I was going to board him, but the vet’s office didn’t want just his rabies current; they wanted him vaccinated for everything all over again as well as a current negative test for FeLv.

That, times 2… Amalie is staying the night as well.
Only I can leave Amalie to chill in the dog crate. Tommy probably wants to play with their doggies.

that guy

When your guinea pig herd shrinks to 1

I never thought all our interactions would be snack-based.

Murphy has been my single piggy for over 3 months. She hates to be handled. She’s always asking for snacks. She’s usually really active.
I wish she’d stop biting me. I had to clip her nails last week, and you’d think she was as mad as having her reindeer costume put on.

Murphy is not a habitual biter, but she really runs out of patience.
She also has 4 different bags of cookies. Limit 2 per day. Hopefully one of them will be her vitamin C cookie.

Next week is her 4th birthday.

4 1/2 months old

I’m sure you’ve noticed it

Things have felt a little different around here since December. I was due for my mental health appointment, and they have been cancelling it and rescheduling me ever since. That month was when things really began to hit me, and I was due for a medication adjustment… it’s sort of a seasonal problem from November-March. But that first month they told me they had to reschedule was the month my friend Ted didn’t make it to his next mental health check. Ted died. We never get to hear from Ted again, except in those awkward Facebook Memories that pop up every day from X amount of ever years ago. His wife has our last photo somewhere, I’m sure, but I haven’t been imposing on her. They were the couple that I stayed with in April in Missouri when I went to the big pet bloggers conference, which in hindsight, seems to be the last BlogPaws event they’ll do.

December was also my first surprise $500 electric bill in this new rental. Compounding financial issues with mental issues with mourning just about makes my head explode. So, I had an appointment in January. Then they rescheduled. And I had my appointment for the end of January. Then they rescheduled. Currently I am to see a different provider in 3 weeks, all the while my very last mental health appointment was completed in September.

That electric bill? Our HVAC was busted and wasn’t replaced until almost 7 weeks since my property manager said that a $500 bill wasn’t normal and he’d have it looked at. Then I got to see that the projected bill was going to be $800 before repairs were completed, as the temperatures were dropping.

I’ve been looking for ways to keep my mind busy, and have been going overkill on shopping ads, sales, couponing, rebating… sort of like an OCD style coping mechanism.

The little things I like are the rewards that show up in my email for my pet supermarket accounts, telling me to take it easy and wish my pet(s) a happy birthday, and go pick them out a treat at the store.

The thing with the couponing is that I saved $6 on the turkey thighs I need for the boys’ next batch of raw food.

I have found a few big clearance items on Nutriberries that the birds enjoy daily, and they don’t expire for months. I still keep them in the freezer because my cat will break into the bags and eat them.

I have also come to realize that my 16 year old veneers over my broken teeth from the car accident in my youth are going to need replaced. This is at the same time the vet’s office wants me to get Amalie’s teeth cleaned again. I did have her senior blood panel ran and made sure she’s healthy because of that nausea last week, and that she and the other three cats need their 3 year rabies renewed.

Hopefully we’ll have a lull in the snow days so I can get some better lighting for new photos. Weruva has some fun new things you should know about, but not in bad lighting; I just can’t do that to you.

My friends also adopted a rescue dog and I have applied to several campaigns to see if we can get some doggy items featured.

We do have an issue going on with the birds right now. Idris has been alienating herself from the flock. She’d had time out quite a few times over on the travel cage 6 feet away. She’s been going to bed with Jak and Koi at night, but Dismal says that we need to not let her have the bed time buddies so she’ll appreciate them in the daylight as well. My suspicions are that this can last up to a year with any behavioral problem. She’s 7 in 11 days.

Friskies Lil’ Soups Lickable Cat Treats #chewyinfluencer

Chewy sent us the Friskies Lil’ Soups to try out this month at no charge. It’s a cat snack – supplemental feeding/topper, what-have-you, but it’s not meant as a complete meal.

Click through to see the Lil’ Soups available on Chewy

The girls don’t usually like fish, so we chose the Shrimp in Velvety Chicken Broth, because sometimes shrimp and crabs are still okay with Princess Yue Pants. It went over very well. The boys went nuts for it.

They’re only fifteen calories, so YES, I let the boys share them.

It looked plain when I opened it, but then I found these pieces in the velvety broth

Stewart had a bad day a week or so ago with sinus pressure and he didn’t want to eat much, so his dad insisted I give him this to stimulate his thirst drive, instead of his dehydrated treats. The 1.2 oz cup is very favorable so that you can’t end up with a snarf and barf.

I can’t find these in stores anymore, but you can find them on Chewy.com
All orders $49+ ship free within 1-2 days.

Google is not a Veterinarian

It’s very useful, though.

Amalie is my stray that I took in years ago, and she ends up at the vet about every two years for her dental disease. Now, she’s at the concerning point in her longevity that she is a senior of unknown distinction.

My girl might be about 13 or so, and it’s been advised every year to get her full wellness panel. It is time, but I’ve been putting it off because our bills have been insane, all cats need their 3 year rabies renewed, and Amalie’s Wellness Bill runs about $400.

But, I think this week I need to schedule it because Google has told me the following:

Amalie may have just had an intense spell of nausea. I’ve never seen this before. I don’t keep plants in the house because of potential toxic ingestion. I wash out the food dishes all the time, and she’s already on daily CDB for her achy little body.

She was asleep for an hour or two on a pillow, and suddenly woke up to have large amounts of foam come from her mouth. I cleaned her up, and then she went to go sit alone under the cat tree for about ten minutes, until she asked if she could come lay all over me like old lady house cats have the right to do.

Thank you, Google. I think I’ll take her in and check all her values. She’s casually waving her tail over my arm, wondering when I’m going to notice I’m not petting her.

Would you play with giants?

I have this thought that will usually repeat every month, as to why they want to play with giants?

My rats were social and brilliant in their interactions with the humans. They play with giants! Giants that they can’t even “see”. We’re these large, blurry entities. They mark us with their urine so we’re easier to find, and they might not recognize us so well after a makeover. But, they love us, in many many cases. I would leave George with her rat, Jane, while I went to work, and when I’d come home and open the front door and call “GEORGIE!”, she would spin in circles. Her human was home.
HER GIANT.

The guinea pigs are naturally prey animals, and very few of them decided to interact with me, but there have been a few social ones.
Dear Giant, will there be treats? Yes, I will accept a noogie for treats. The nail clippers? I will still have tootsies when you finish? Okay, human.

The parrots are crazy. I have three, and two are bonded, and every morning they are happy to see me. I can ignore them, and they will call for me. I look over and declare, “WHAT?”, and they start bouncing with their ‘Yes, c’mere!’. I approach, and sometimes I will speak and other times I won’t, and if I put my face next to them silently, they will walk over and kiss my nose. We have conversations.
They don’t really need me. They have a cage that stays open all day, and they are partially or fully flighted, and from time to time they still call me over. I am huge. I have no feathers. Most of the time I sound like Charlie Brown’s teacher.
I may be sitting on the couch, and Idris will cross the guinea pig pen to sit closer to me while I watch television. I might be eating, and Koi Monkey crosses the guinea pig pen to see what I’ve got. “Ha ha, Monkey… Nooooo *shakes head*”, and she walks away.
Why do they care for humans? We’re HUGE. We’re not supposed to exist in their wild.

Dogs have the Very Good Boy syndrome. Love their humans. Maybe humans are what happens when your wolf loses its fur.

If you think your cats don’t care about these giants, then I am sorry, but yours hasn’t fully ripened yet and was pulled too early from the cat tree. When I’m gone for the day, everyone wants to sit with me when I return. They believe it has been a week. One particular offender is Princess Yue Pants: She yowls outside my bedroom door for 2 hours after the house is shut down because she didn’t get her momma time in.
Dear Princess: You are 10 lbs. I am at least 4 foot taller than you, and several inches wider. My tail was removed before it was time to walk, as is customary in this country. There are 3 other members of your clowder. Why me?

How are we so trustworthy, comfortable, and familiar? Are we easily trainable and every species knows it?
“In the year one million and a half / humankind is enslaved by giraffe.”

Natural Balance Delectable Delights cat food #chewyinfluencer

Chewy gave us Natural Balance to review this month at no charge, and it turned out Princess Yue Pajama Pants was a bit too enthusiastic.

Catatouille Chicken and Chicken Liver Stew with gravy

Delectable Delights available on Chewy for cats and dogs

My girls are the fussy ones, more specifically Amalie, but neither of them like fish. Weird for kitties, right? But, it worked out well because from what I can tell, both girls ate this BUT I AM GOING TO POINT THE FINGER OF MOM AT YUE FOR BEING PRINCESS SNARF AND BARF. I can never put her Catatouille out if the bowl has been empty for more than 1 hour. Natural Balance has several flavors of these trays available, but only one as primarily chicken. The other option is a tuna and chicken pate called Land’n Sea Cats-erole. The other choices sound tasty like Sea Brulee Stew, O’Fishally Scampi, Purrrfect Paella, and Life’s a Beach.

Natural Balance Catatouille is made in the USA as grain free, corn, soy, wheat, artificial colors and bleached ingredient-FREE
Delectable Delights come in a 12-2.5oz case for the cats and may not break your bank (depends… I’m kind of Holiday Broke right now), although you can save an extra 5% off with Autoship and Save.

obligatory Princess Pants photo

Any order $49+ get you free 1-2 day shipping

Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, and no animals were harmed – only mom