An opinionated feline in Edmonton, Canada who lived with a retired cat behaviourist, Greyce provided behavioral advice to cats in need until her death in July 2014. Because her entries are useful even today, the blog remains posted.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Cat Adjusts to Return of Fellow Feline from Surgery

Dear Greyce,

I wanted to share how we handled Skeeter's surgery. You may recall that Skeeter has an immune virus that has been attacking his gums, causing his teeth to decay. Sometimes, his gums bled. He was scheduled for full extraction surgery. Needless to say, Themselves were very concerned: about his ability to handle it all and about my ability to deal with yet another novel situation - since I don't do that very well. As you know, I wrote you for advice on how to handle his re-entry into the house.

Herself knew Skeeter would smell different as a result of surgery, so she took me to the Grandfolks' house which I already knew very well. Himself and Herself took turns staying with me (while the other stayed home with the recovering Skeeter). It was like a spa vacation for me. I took my responsibilities of entertaining all of them, seriously.

You advised Herself to go on the American Association of Feline Practitioner's website click on "Veterinary Professionals" at the side of the page and once there, to click on "Guidelines Pubications" (under Practice Guidelines). She found the handout you mentioned under "Feline Friendly Nursing" and printed off Client Handout: Nursing Care for Your Cat. She then also scrolled to "Feline Friend Handling" and printed off Client Handout: Getting Your Cat to the Veterinarian, paying particular attention to the section, Coming Home - Keeping the Peace in a Multi-cat Household.

Once Skeeter was doing better at eating and playing, we were re-introduced. We knew that proper scent exchange in this circumstance would involve rubbing Skeeter with a cloth or towel and then taking that towel and rubbing me - but only in this order and NOT the reverse. We used Feliway diffusers in the house as well to give both of us a sense of comfort.

When I returned home, I noticed is a wonderful increase of wet food - yum. I so like to eat a bit from my dish, then sample Skeeter's, then go back to mine. Themselves also bought a water fountain for us and while I was not too sure at first what this was, I now love it and no longer cry for the bathtub faucet to be turned on.

As well, Skeeter seems to be faring much better. While I still offer to groom him, he is so much cleaner then he ever was before and so much more playful. 

He goes after me for play now and I love it! When he wants to play (either with me, or on his own) I am good with it, and I am playing nice with him. Themselves are finding new toys or ways to keep me busy (or rather - I sneak something away and it becomes the toy of the week).  We do exchange favorite places now throughout the house and if Skeeter wants his spot while I am there, he just climbs up on me.

I still have my limits and thankfully Themselves are very good at recognizing this. Sometimes I can get over-aroused and Skeeter will say enough; but what was once a daily occurrence is now not that often at all.

So Greyce, what we were all concerned would be a BIG event with Skeeter's return from surgery turned out to be a non-event with a very happy ending. And isn't that just as it should be?

Good Looking Guys Come in Pairs!


Dear Dash,

It is always wonderful when your have properly trained purrsons who take the necessary steps to ensure that any potentially upsetting changes are handled in a suitable manner. You owe them a vote of thanks.

I am particularly happy that Skeeter is feeling so much better. And continue to be impressed by your remarkable behavioural improvement.

You are an inspiration to us all!

With purrs and whisker kisses to you both,