Friday, January 6, 2012

Scarlett and the Vet, Part II

Giving Scarlett the medication was surprisingly easy. I followed the vet's advice and fed Scarlett a succession of treats, first a couple of empty pill pockets, then the one with the pill, then another empty ones. Scarlett didn't even notice.

Because Scarlett hides when visitors arrive, the vet recommended keeping her in a confined space where she'd be easy to access (as opposed to, say, the bedroom, where Scarlett could hide under the bed). Additionally, because the medication makes cats a bit unsteady on their feet, the vet recommended keeping Scarlett confined for her own safety.

I set Scarlett up in the bathroom with a bed (her blue blanket from the dresser), food and water, her favorite toys, and a litter box. The litter box was the one from when Melly was imprisoned in the bathroom as a tiny kitten, and the whole setup struck me as an interesting role reversal for the two cats. Melly hovered by the door during Scarlett's confinement, mewing squeakily at me periodically.

April 12, 2010

January 5, 2012

I hung out with Scarlett in the bathroom for a while, and she was clearly affected by the medication after only about 15 minutes. She moved in slow motion and seemed slightly dazed, but she was in good spirits, purring and snuggling.

When Dr. Cutting arrived, she brought another vet with her to help hold Scarlett down. They brought a stack of towels that had been drenched in Feliway in hopes that that would help Scarlett relax. While the vets were getting set up, Melly trotted over and gave the towels a thorough sniffing.

When Dr. Cutting and the other vet were set up, I scooped Scarlett up in a towel and deposited her in the living room for them to examine. Scarlett was moving slowly and actually allowed both vets to pet her a little bit, but after a few minutes, the screeching and escape attempts started. The medication made her noticeably quieter and slower, though, so the vets were able to wrap her up in towels, burrito-style. Dr. Cutting held the towel-wrapped Scarlett down, and the other vet administered the vaccines (distemper and rabies). After the first vaccine, Scarlett started spraying, but fortunately for her, the ordeal was over quickly and she was ushered back into the bathroom to hang out until the medication wore off.

During the whole ordeal, Melly sat in the hallway, watching the action while staying well out of the way and preparing to bolt just in case she was to be next.

The vet noticed that Scarlett's triggers are being touched on her underside and chest, so she suggested I try to condition Scarlett to get used to those types of touches. Scarlett already lets me do pretty much anything, but I am going to try anyway. Scarlett is about ten, so it would be handy if she could get an actual vet exam at some point!

Obviously this wasn't fun for Scarlett, but because of the medication, odds are she won't remember it anyway. So, all in all, I'm feeling pretty good about how the whole thing went: Scarlett got her vaccines, and no one was injured. (Except my living room floor. Thank goodness I had some enzyme cleaner.)


Kjelle Bus said...

Glad to hear that it worked out atleast OK with the Scarlet´s vaccinations !

Fuzzy Tales said...

Wow. And here the mom thought Annie used to be bad re: the vet. She'd cuss up a blue streak, but the vets and techs could work on her!

Glad Scarlett's ordeal is over now, with minimal 'damage' (the spraying).

And we sure do hope she doesn't remember it! ;-)

Rene said...

Your vet sounds great in working with you and Scarlett. I'm glad you were able to get her vaccines.

kelley said...

Whew...glad that's over for you and Scarlett...

Simba said...

Scarlett does have a severe reaction, doesn't she? We are glad she got her vaccinations. Maybe more sedative next time?

Marlene said...

We are glad Scarlett got vaccinated so 'easily'. Phew!

Q who came before was a terror at the vet's office, but still allowed the vet to examine and vaccinate him.

What enzyme cleaner do you use? 9 has been marking all over the condo and currently, we use Nature's Miracle orange spray cleaner. It's not doing anything to stop 9, but it helps clean up a bit

BeadedTail said...

We're glad that ordeal is over and Scarlett is now legal! It's really great that your vet worked with you so much too.

Anonymous said...

I have a tazmanian devil at the vet myself (he's drawn blood from a none-too-happy vet) and Ace is our best friend for his visits now. You also have to warn the office staff so they get you in right away vs letting the cat freak in the waiting room for 20 min before. And..look for a cat only vet office, ours has helped reduce his stress levels a lot. Interestingly, we have problems of our two cats fighting intensely at home after the scared one has been to the vet. I'm assuming it's smell related, so have tried fur wipes and tons of Feliway, but if anyone has suggestions of how to shut down the after-effect fighting I'd be very appreciative!

Ted said...

Pfft. Melly was NEVER a tiny kitten.

Our dumb cat freaks out when he is given anesthetic. He dissociates. Poor guy.

ABBY said...

Oh we are so glad things worked so well for Scarlett.

Sparkle said...

It sounds like the vet visit went pretty well, considering Scarlett's predilections! The cat before me was a banshee on the way to the vet, but once in the examining room, she was pretty easy to handle.

Mark's Mews said...

We go limp with the scruff-of-the-neck (Vulcan sedation grip) hold, so we are no problem for the vets. So we are (we spose) pretty lucky.

Here's hoping the touch-therapy helps in the future...