hips don’t lie

October 23, 2018 | Comments Off

Oliver has had yet another medical issue, and this is like his sixth one this year. My baby boy has sure had one hell of a time. He needs to be bubble wrapped.

The latest (and hopefully the last)? My poor kitten broke his hip a little over a week ago. When they did the X-rays, it showed that he had broken his other hip not long ago, and it wasn’t healing how they thought it should. Recently, and I think I wrote about this, he had been limping a little. I think our vet said his back was tweaked, and he did seem to be walking better – until he started limping yet again. Even though that X-ray didn’t show anything, we were all set to have him looked at one more time when he fell and broke the other side. See, we have shelves up that our memory boxes sit on. He likes to jump up there to have a little nap. Mark had just told him he needed to get down and walked out of the room. Then, there was a crash. I thought he had knocked a box over. Turns out that the whole shelf gave out. When I had them mounted, I asked specifically if they’d be able to handle a big cat’s weight. He put in extra anchors, more than had come with them in the package in the first place. We didn’t factor in whether or not those shelves could handle both weight and movement because we just didn’t know we had to do such a thing. After his fall, Oliver ran under the bed in the master bedroom. We weren’t sure if he had been injured or if he was just scared and startled. When he got up to move, he couldn’t get his leg lifted up over one of the planks (or whatever they’re called) that is under the bed supporting it. He also was growling periodically. This happened at 11pm, and Mark took him right to the emergency room and wasn’t back until 5am. Actually, he had to be transferred after the formal diagnosis, so yeah. We never dreamed they were going to tell us any of this.

Now, we’ve been told that this was a condition he was predisposed to. In other words, it was just a matter of time until he broke his hips. And it could have been from a simple jump off the counter or bedside table. The first thing we were told by one specialist was that he was predisposed to this due to a growth plate problem. We were also told that there is a syndrome in big cats where their femur heads fall off. So I’m thinking we got two different scenarios: one involving the femur and the other involving the ball of the socket which connects via a growth plate, if my notes are accurate and even make any sense. My vet was going to look at their X-rays and reports and tell me which it definitively was, but she’s away for two or so weeks. I don’t know how similar or different those two things even are, but I don’t think it matters anymore really. It was agreed upon that it was going to happen at some point, it happened, and it now shouldn’t happen again. Also, he had just started taking dasaquin to fend off any issues with arthritis that his future hip dysplasia could cause, but now he’s not going to have that issue anymore!

Initially there was talk of bringing him home the next day, but that didn’t happen. He ended up having to stay there for a total of four nights, with him there for three nights longer than anticipated. They couldn’t get a handle on his pain management, and that is the last thing this mama wanted to hear, for sure. If I could take on any/all of their pain, discomfort, and sadness so that they were free of any of that kind of stuff, I would do it an instant. While waiting for him to come back home, we emptied out the sunroom of all furniture and filled it with blankets and various cat beds. We put the guest room’s mattress on the floor in there; Mark sleeps in there overnight with him, and I spend all day in there with him. There is supposed to be absolutely no running, jumping, pouncing, or playing for three months minimum! He’s been home for one week now, and he’s getting better and stronger each day. When he was at the emergency vet, he’d lay there and pee himself because he couldn’t/wouldn’t stand yet. He also wasn’t eating all that much either. When we brought him home, he immediately started to move by dragging around his lower half. He used the litter box right away, and he ate like a little piggy! Two days later he actually stood up to poo. That’s the only time he stood up that day, but each day after he has been up more and more. Now he walks around the sunroom somewhat and also sits on his haunches. We had two things to do for him for his first week home: massage his hip, leg, and bum area and put ice on him. In this new week, we are to stretch his legs and hold him so his back legs hang down. A website recommends getting a harness and walking him up and down stairs, so we will eventually do that in the basement. He also has three physical therapy sessions outside of the house to attend, the first one happening right after he gets his stitches out! He’s already getting bored in the empty sunroom, so I honestly cannot even imagine what is going to happen when we are a month into this. Haha. OMG. Yesterday Sam went in to visit him, and they were about to wrestle before Mark intervened. Poor Oliver! He really wanted to play. When he first started attempting to walk, he’d topple right over. It was like watching a baby deer try to take its first steps – very cute but a little heartbreaking that he has to stumble. The one weird thing is that his adorable pink nose and lips aren’t so pink anymore! I was told that they’ll return to their original shade as soon as he gets more active. I finally did see that happen with my own eyes the other day. I forget exactly what had happened, but something did and I saw the pretty, pretty pink I had been missing! Maybe it was when he was batting around an empty treat bag? Hmmm.

Poor Oliver has had such a rough year. He’s had such a tough start to life, and I feel so sad for him. No animal should ever have to feel pain or suffer, let alone so much of it at such a young age. He’s already aloof, and I wonder how this will affect his future personality. Physically he is supposed to rebound 100%, but what about his little spirit? If he were a human child, dyfs would have taken him away from us by now. All his bad luck this past year – anemia, 2 blood transfusions, needing blood drawn every 2-4 weeks for months, 2 surgeries, 2 broken hips, herpes emergence, hairball issues revealed, swollen and injured foot – just sounds too crazy to all be bad luck, bad timing, and shit like that. I hope that he continues to heal well, that he eventually forgets that this ever happened, that he eventually forgets this entire year from hell, and that he eventually can truly enjoy his sweet little life!

So, lastly, here are some photos of Oliver in his recovery room:

Oliver in his recovery room
Oliver in his recovery room
Oliver in his recovery room
Oliver in his recovery room
Oliver in his recovery room

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