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16373Re: [FH] Question - coping

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  • Michelle Waters
    Apr 28, 2004
      Hi Janice,

      First off, I have a trick which makes giving pills to cats easier: I take some butter and with my finger put it around the pill, then with the thumb & index finger of one hand hold Goldenrod's mouth open while with the other hand I put the butter-coated pill in the back of his mouth. Then I close his mouth and rub his throat to stimulate his swallowing reflex. With this method I've been able to pill cats that are really difficult (I do pet sitting so I've been in this situation a bit). I hope this helps and that you are able to manage this by yourself.

      As for coping and being able to go away sometimes, Goldenrod threw a clot last October, and he's still with us, so we're having to deal with this issue as well. At Christmas we told our families (who are in L.A., we're in the Bay Area) that we needed to stay home to take care of Goldenrod, because at that point he was having wet-to-dry bandage changes on his leg every day (the clot settled in his calf muscle which he lost, and we were trying to save the leg, which we did by keeping a close watch on things).

      Earlier this month my sister-in-law got married in England (where she lives). The whole family was going over. We got our tickets last Fall before the clot-throwing incident. We didn't feel great about leaving Goldie but couldn't refund our tickets, and besides, it was a family wedding and a big deal. Fortunately I have a wonderful neighbor who used to be a vet tech. She and I have been trading animal care for years and we trust her implicitly. She's the only person besides our vets and my husband that I would trust with my cats. I was concerned about her having to deal with the possibility of something happening to Goldie while we were gone so we talked about it and she said she fully understood the possibilities and was prepared to deal with whatever came up. So we went and I was nervous almost the entire time. I had bad dreams about the cats while in England. We were gone for 9 days and came back not a moment to soon because the day before we got back Goldie started getting
      really depressed and stopped eating. My neighbor figured that it was because we were gone, and she was right, because once we were back he became much happier and started eating again.

      So now we are not going to both be away at the same time. Goldenrod is too dependent on us and his HCM is worsening so he needs one of us to be there. I have to go to L.A. because my dad is sick, and my husband is staying home with the cats (only 3 days, and he's just as good with Goldie as I am, if not better).

      This is just how we've been coping; I don't have any brilliant advice for you really. It's a lot of work being a caretaker and sometimes exhausting. I wish you luck finding a solution that works for you and your husband.


      >Do any of you travel or take vacations? How do you do it?
      >My husband and I used to like to travel a couple of times a year for some sort of vacation - and sometimes to friends for an overnight or weekend visit (we have friends in VA and we live in PA now).
      >Since July we have felt tied to our home. I went to a cousin's MA wedding in October without my husband - he stayed at home to pill Kirby - by himself - which is difficult.
      >We took Kirby with us for my father's 70th birthday and New Years (same day) - but that didn't go real well and we came home early.

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