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Posted on 06-23-2017
Hello New Friends,
My name is Muffin and I’m a food-aholic… I’m not an exercise-aholic and I guess that’s part of my problem.
I have recently become the newest resident of All Pets Animal Hospital. This all came about when my owner found that she could not deal with my health problems any longer. You see, walking for me is pretty painful so I don’t do it. I also have admittedly had some litter box, let’s say, “issues.” To be fair on the latter problem, it HURTS for me to climb in that box. And, well, I guess I don’t always “fit” in the thing, either.
You see as much as it pains me to admit it, I am also overweight. I mean, I knew I had gained a few pounds, but I guess I need to come to terms with the fact that I am pretty darn heavy. I believe the phrase the doctor used was “morbidly obese.” I also have to admit that I don’t feel very well most of the time.
My owner had put me on “diet food,” but I guess I was just using that as an excuse to eat more. By the time I found myself in dire straits at the animal hospital, I was up to 22lbs. They told me that my weight was likely making my other “conditions” much worse and even scarier, I was in imminent danger of something called “diabetes.” They said this would make me very sick and feel much worse than I already did. The animal hospital promised that they would help me. They said they could help me lose weight and make me hurt less but there were conditions… I had to commit to tests, medications, diet and exercise. Oh and I had to blog about it. They said they wanted me to help inspire other owners and pets to get healthy and lose weight. Honestly, I didn’t really know what a blog was. Technology is not my strong suit; I’m an 11-year old cat – I know how to find the good sunny spots, locate the food dish, and find the litter box (usually). But I didn’t really have much to lose, so I signed on.
It was a bit of a blow, being turned over to an animal hospital. I guess I had hit the proverbial “rock bottom,” and I had to admit I needed help. The hospital staff on the other hand, seemed pretty chipper about the whole prospect. There was a lot of squealing. Apparent humans do that a lot. They promised that they could “rehabilitate” me and seemed pretty excited about it.
That first day was rough. The emotional blow was tough enough, but there was all the testing, poking and prodding. It started with an exam by the doctor. I swear he poked and prodded me everywhere. Then there was the blood test; they said they needed to make sure my blood was healthy. Then they took me to a little room and took a special picture called an “X-Ray.” They said it would let them seem my bones (can you even imagine?) so maybe they could tell why I was hurting so much when I walked. I put up with it all. I mean, they had offered to help, it was the least I could do.
When all the indignities were done, they brought me to my new condo. It was nice enough, with a warm bed and separate rooms for my food, water and litterbox. Again I had to come to grips with my weight when I found how difficult it was to pass through the holes between rooms. They also offered me dinner. It smelled enticing, but honestly I was too tired and stressed to eat. I gratefully fell into bed and passed out.
Day two was a little easier. I met more people and they squealed too. They also told me how beautiful I was and how happy they were that I was at the hospital. They pet me and brushed me and seemed very excited when I let them rub my belly; apparently a lot of cats don’t like that. How could they not? It wasn’t all socializing though. Exercise started that day too. They took me out on their patio for “walks” on a leash (can you believe it? Do I look like a dog to you?). It was much harder than it sounds, we did laps over and OVER. I also got the results of my tests that day. They said my blood actually looked pretty good! I did not have that thing they called diabetes, which made me breathe a sigh of relief. They also said my kidneys were good too, which I guess is a problem in, um, mature cats. The X-ray pictures said that I have something called arthritis in my legs and back, which is why I am so sore all the time. They assured me that they had stuff to help me so I should be feeling better soon.
I found I was pretty sore by the end of that day, worse than the day before. Luckily, the promised pain treatments started then too. There were two medications I had to eat that they said would help with pain. They didn’t taste too bad, really. There was also this shot that they said would help make the fluid inside my joints healthier, so they would hurt less. There was also this funny treatment with a laser. Not that silly dot thing that some cats play with; it was much bigger. It beeped and was warm on my sore spots. They said it would help my body heal itself.
By the end of the second day I was hungry enough to start eating. The food was really pretty good, although there was not nearly as much of it as I was used to. It was soft and meaty; I could get used to this for sure.
The rest of the week was more of the same. A lot of “workouts.” They said I’m starting slow because I’m not used to it and it makes me pretty sore. If this is “slow” I’m afraid to see what “fast” is! They have tried to get me to play with silly strings, toys and the aforementioned laser dot. I’m not really interested in that kitten stuff; I’m a mature cat after all! I guess the worst part of the week was the “spa day.” They told me that my skin was flaky and my coat was dull because I couldn’t groom myself. They gave me a bath which was not really as bad as I had been told. I have to admit that I was less itchy afterwards.
The medications do seem to work. By the end of the first week I could actually tell the difference and while exercise is exhausting, I am hurting less and less every day. They did introduce me to one other treatment which I found particularly strange. They set me in a comfy bed and stuck all these tiny needles in me; they said it’s called “acupuncture.” It didn’t really hurt, but it was just weird, you know? Whatever they’re doing, it seems to be helping so who am I to complain.
Overall the place isn’t bad. I have my own space, and they are already letting me explore some parts of the hospital on my own. I spend a lot of time out on their patio. It is large, with beds for me all over. There is plenty of sun for basking, and lots of shady spots so I don’t get too hot. They have a litterbox and a water bowl out there too, so I can stay as long as I want. They also have a nice indoor room with a couch (perfect for sleeping under) where my new family hangs out. It’s a great place when a cat feels like being social.
There is another cat here, her name is Chloe. They say she is really old, but to be honest she looks pretty good. I don’t think she cares for me very much and to be honest, we cats are a suspicious lot so I don’t know how I feel about her either. But we give each other space and nothing bad has happened.
I have met some dogs here, too. I mean, it’s an animal hospital so there are a lot of animals passing through, but these dogs are here often. They seem to belong to some of the nurses. I’ve lived with dogs before so they don’t scare me like they do some other cats. There’s a small brown one with long hair named Francine; she is unnecessarily cheerful, which put me off at first. I’m willing to put up with her now – she seems alright. Then there’s this really tiny black one named Thor. He’s WAY smaller than I am so I’m not too concerned about him. He seems a little concerned about me though. Then there’s this tall blonde one named Faye. She lives with the lady who is helping me type this (thumbs). Faye is real quiet and actually seems afraid of me, which secretly makes me chuckle.
I’ve been here two weeks now, and they already seem pretty excited by my progress. Some days I really don’t feel like participating, but they’re very encouraging and the exercise ultimately gets done. Lately they’ve been saying how much better I’m walking and they said I’ve lost some weight! I’ve heard a lot from the staff about how much they adore me. They even put me to work one day helping to show a cat owner how to do something called a “glucose test.” I guess their cat has that diabetes thing and needs a little blood test done at home sometimes. They said that I was very helpful! The cat’s person also seemed to know who I was, “Oh, that’s the famous Muffin!” she said. Imagine me, famous!
I’m pretty hopeful about the whole thing at this point. I also appreciate all of you taking the time to listen to a fat (soon to be thin) cat ramble on. I’ll report next week with my progress, and any fun behind-the-scenes secrets that I learn!
Until next time,
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