Our Happily Ever After Adventures....

Or Something Like That

July, 2001

Tommy Goes to the Emergency Vet

Most people don't understand Tommy, our 11th cat. As you many know from our earlier rescue adventures, Tommy has a checkered past. To be honest, if Tommy were human, he would be the leader of a biker gang, with several paternity suits following him across the area. To prove his tough guy image, Tommy frequently brawls with the other cats (and sometimes Bruno) in the house. Some run from him, some take him on, some, like Her Royal Highness Tia, will back him in a corner and whale on him. (He also has frequent "dates" with his blanket, but that is another matter)

Tommy in one of his poses

Tommy can also be counted on for a couple of other things, mainly food. If you ever want to find Tommy from anywhere in the house, just open a can of cat food and he will come running. That's how we knew something was wrong the night Tommy slept through dinner.

We checked him out, he definitely looked down and out. He was also hot, as in really high fever hot. By now Bob and I had managed to acquire a little bit of vet care experience, we thought. We promptly "temped" him.... 106.5. OK that was pretty high. We decided to give him fluids to help cool him off. To say it didn't go well would be an understatement. As soon as we got near him with the needle, he started bucking like a bronco. It's not supposed to work like this: whenever we watched someone else, the cat always quietly laid there like they were taking a sun bath. The rate this guy was going, it would have been easier to get the needle into the mechanical bull from "Urban Cowboy". After that neither one of us really wanted to stick our fingers down his throat to pill him either.

We decide to take his temperature again. (Mental note: cats don't really enjoy having thier temperature taken a first time, let alone a second time) By now he was getting a little upset, ok a lot upset. His temp was also up to 107. At this point normally one would worry about brain damage with the average cat with a temperature of 107. But this was Tommy, we figured he'd already done all the damage he could possibly do.

It was at this point Bob and I made the executive decision that he was going to need more care than we could give him and decided to pack him up and take him to the emergency vet. (Naturally the regular vet was closed by now, and besides, they had already experienced Tommy)

Fortunately, we had an in at the emergency vet... one of the vet techs there also volunteered with us. She got Tommy and Bob in quickly. Soon another unsuspecting vet tech comes to take Tommy, still in the carrier to the back for the vet to look him over. A few minutes later, the usually hubbub of the clinic is broken by loud caterwauling screams, followed by a few choice human words. We figured round 1 went to Tommy.

A few minutes later, the vet tech (looking a little more hagard) came back asked if Bob would mind coming into the back and helping them with Tommy. When Bob got to the back treatment room, he witnessed two vet techs holding the carrier upside down, shaking it profusely, with Tommy's hind legs hanging out. Guess Tommy wasn't as close to death as we thought. The carrier was taken apart and a somewhat ticked off Tommy removed from its remains.

The vet eventually came in to see him. The victum (vet) on duty that night was one that absolutely hated to sedate an animal, especially in the emergency clinic. In the past he sutured up wounds and dug bullets out of animals without sedatives, rather than risk the animal going into shock. Back to Tommy. The vet agreed he had a really high fever. He said there had to be a reason for it. Bob thought that Tommy was limping a little on one front paw. So the vet stretched the paw out to look at it. Tommy promptly bit the vet. The vet thought he saw something on the other front paw and starting looking at it. Tommy bit him again. At this point a statement was uttered that stunned even the vet techs: " Sir, would you mind if I sedated your cat before I examine him?"
Bob said sure, and would they fill him up with fluids while they were at it?

$150 later, Bob and a now sedated Tommy were on thier way home. Turns out we were right about the treatment for him, just couldn't get the meds into the cat. The vet survived, we aren't sure if he decided to sedate himself or not to treat his bite wounds. We later heard that he decided to open a catering business on the eastern shore.

At least Tommy didn't get into any trouble that night.

A somewhat recovered Tommy