Ron and I took Orion to Animal General yesterday for his first geriatric check-up. Everyone fell in love with him! Dr. May tended to him and gave him a complete exam. We had blood work and urinalysis done. She was surprised (other than his weight) of how good he looked, especially his teeth! 🙂 Physically, everything looked like things where functioning correctly, but the tests would give her more information.
We waited up front for Dr. May and crew of vet techs to finish up with Orion. She came into the lobby and said that everything was fine and blood and urine samples were taken. Apparently, the vet techs were so in love with Orion and touched by his adoption story, he received the Wizard of Oz treatment – clipping of his hind claws and brushing of all his matted fur. Mind you, I had brushed all the mats out of his back, but still had his legs, chest, and belly to conquer!
During this time, I spoke to Dr. May privately. I told her in detail Orion’s adoption story. She was emotionally overwhelmed and excused herself. Before she left, she said, “What you did was a good thing.”
I’ve been hearing that a lot lately. The vet techs said it, friends at START II said it, and my friends on WP said it. Yet, I don’t see it as a “good thing.” I only see it as the “right thing” to do. I certainly wasn’t going to let a mildly deformed looking senior cat sit in a shelter to die of FIP or euthanasia, when his only crime was being “old.” Yeah. That kinda outraged the public when Soylent Green came out. How would people like it if their older parents or grandparents were euthanized because they were simply too old and a burden to take care of? My point exactly.
Like I said, Ron and I promised to adopt mostly “special needs” cats. And in the height of kitten season, a senior on death row goes beyond special; it’s more like urgent need.
So, I received a call before with Orion’s test results.
Dr. May said that everything check out – his kidneys and thyroid are functioning as they should. However, his platelet count was a little low (23%, when the low normal is 29%), so that raised a flag. Only because of his age though. Because he’s malnourished, it could be that everything is thrown off. But she suggested an x-ray just as a precaution. If anything cancerous shows up, it would be early enough to treat with medications. I kinda expected something like this to happen.
If our home needs to turn into a hospice for Orion at any time, than that’s what we will be. We were prepared with the facts, that he was 16 yrs old and at any point his health could decline. We refused to see him sit in a shelter and get worse, not provided the proper veterinary care he deserves. We refused to let him sit in the city pound and die because he was too old.
We love Orion. And we will do what is in his best interests. Not ours.
So, we’re off to the vet next week for some x-rays! Hopefully, they’ll come back clean!