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Wednesday, April 25, 2007  

Turning Turtle Part III

For various scheduling reasons, I had to bring M. Small along with us to the vet on Friday evening for Turtle’s latest round of bloodwork. He was fine at first, because he likes seeing the puppies and the kitties in the waiting room and asking the people behind the counter, “Do you have a sticker for me?” (they always do). I usually bring him when we’re just buying cat food, but this time he understood why it was the three of us. “Turtle has to go to the doctor,” he explained to me. “She’s not feeling berry well any more.”

When a veterinary tech came to bring Turtle’s pet carrier into the back to weigh her and get her blood drawn, M. Small protested, “No, don’t take my kitty!” We explained that Turtle would be right back, and that they needed to check on her. M. Small seemed to accept this, but he still seemed to consider it a poignant moment. “They took my friend away,” he sadly told another cat-parent in the waiting room a few minutes later. I love how he makes it sound like he’s living in 1930s Poland.

When Turtle returned a few minutes later, Dr. M. delivered the good news that she’d regained two pounds since I’d first brought her in (Turtle, not Dr. M). I said that I was out of some of Turtle’s meds, so the vet asked me to wait for the blood results before she decided whether to send me home with more. I was fine with this. Turtle didn’t protest either. M. Small? Not so much.

His interest in the puppy and kitty toys you can buy there wasn’t very long-lived. Neither was his interest in the waiting-room storybooks I attempted to read to him. You know those horrible parents who let their kids scream and run around in public places? M. Small didn’t have a lot of patience for sitting around. He wasn’t going to submit quietly to not being able to explore. I’m saying there was going to be either running or screaming, and it was up to me to find the balance. Fortunately, he’s cute.

For a short time, he was distracted by the fact that the blanket in Turtle’s carrier happened to be one of his old baby blankets. Any concern over Turtle’s well-being took second priority to his sudden and overwhelming need to repossess it and wrap himself in it. Sorry you’re not feeling berry well, Turtle. Enjoy lying on your bare plastic floor.

After what seemed like about three hours, Dr. M. came out into the lobby to talk to me. I wasn’t there, because M. Small had just made a break down the hallway that leads to the dog exam rooms. But I was able to nab him and we quickly returned to hear the news.

And the news was good. Turtle was better.

Not entirely better, mind you. But after a week on Prednisolone instead of Prednisone, her red blood cell count stopped stagnating and went up from 15 to 27 in a week. Apparently a well-placed “lo” makes all the difference.

This is good because 27 is in the normal range. Dr. M. agreed with me that this was amazing. M. Small also had an urgent matter to discuss with Dr. M. “I got wet! I got wet! I got wet! I got wet in the sprinkler! [actually a spraying leak in a splice between garden hoses, but never mind]” Somehow over his racket I was able to follow what she was saying. The bottom line for me is that for now, Turtle only gets one pill per day. Do you realize what an improvement one pill per day represents over the previous dosage, which was four to five pills and a squirt of liquid antibiotics twice per day? It’s an improvement, I’ll tell you that. It means the difference between six or seven protracted battles each day and one protracted battle each day. Although we’re a little more evenly matched now that she’s gained two pounds back.

This was the first time I’d ever seen Dr. M. laugh. I don’t know if it was because a toddler was hollering into her face or relief at how much better Turtle is doing, Frankly, I’ll accept either one.

posted by M. Giant 3:16 PM 13 comments


Yea, Turtle!!!!!!! So very happy to read the good news!!

By Blogger Heather, at April 25, 2007 at 3:53 PM  

Yes! Great news for Turtle and for M. Small.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 25, 2007 at 4:48 PM  

Gooooooo, Turtle! That's awesome news.

By Blogger Linda, at April 25, 2007 at 5:25 PM  

Instead of fighting over pills with a cat, get this product called "Pill Pockets." They're treats that you can fit a pill inside. I could never get meds into my cat before I got these, but now he eats them with no problem. Wish I had known about these 15 years ago (he's a really old cat).

By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 25, 2007 at 5:46 PM  

That's great news! We found that the "lo" makes a difference with our asthmatic cat also. The prednisolone works like a charm, prednisone not so much. The vet told us that cats typically respond better to prednisolone.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 26, 2007 at 12:11 AM  

Hooray for Turtle!!! And thank you SO much for the coffee that just came out my nose when I read the bit about M Small's 1930s Polish experience... ;)

By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 26, 2007 at 6:06 AM  

Yay, Turtle! I've been rotating back to keep posted on her condition and am very pleased to hear her news. Thank you for writing so amusingly about the good, the bad and the indifferent.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 26, 2007 at 6:37 AM  

Yay! I'm so glad she's doing better, and equally happy that you only have to shove one pill per day down her throat. Everyone goes home happier!

By Blogger Dawnie, at April 26, 2007 at 8:28 AM  

That's great that Turtle is doing so much better and yay for less meds! You should get hazard pay for all the pills you had to stuff down her gullet.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 26, 2007 at 12:32 PM  

Sorry to be a killjoy (really should have gotten Pamie's Wonder Killer shirt awhile back), but I think it's actually a well-placed "ol," not "lo." They probably added an alcohol group (oxygen and hydrogen) onto the structure of Prednisone. So it's actually some well-placed alcohol, which I think helps a lot of things. No matter what that ol/lo is, yea Turtle!

By Blogger Emily, at April 26, 2007 at 1:54 PM  

As a good friend of mine likes to say, "Prednisolone is the shizzolone." (Did I spell that right?) We joke that this particular drug was named by Dr. Snoop Dogg.

By Blogger kmckee7, at April 26, 2007 at 3:08 PM  

Yay! I love happy ending kitty stories. My kitty was recently sick and it was amazing how sad it made our house feel until he was himself again.

Hooray for Prednisowhassis.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 26, 2007 at 5:04 PM  

That's wonderful news! I'm so glad Turtle is better.

By Blogger Teslagrl, at May 2, 2007 at 10:52 AM  

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