Monday, October 23, 2006

A Koshi Kat Update!

Koshi is back from hospital.

My last post detailed how Koshi was striken with Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease - essentially a blockage. In male cats this is fatal within one to three days. Amazingly I had never heard of FLUTD. My wife, ever the observant mother, noticed that Koshi wanted to urinate, but was unable to. Thank goodness my wife insisted, and took him to the vet.

We took him in last week, and he was released after catheterization, and one night's observation. Total cost $375 for the catheterization at the animal hospital (which included sedation, and meds), and $135 for the followup, and stay at the vets - which included a blood test.

Sadly a day after Koshi came home he became blocked again, and we had to rush him back into the animal hospital - as they were the only place open at the time.

Koshi Kat At Animal Hospital

Total cost so far $1417!

And of course we threw out all the leading brand name garbage that we had been feeding our cats (Meow Mix for example), and now have all of our cats on the much more expensive, but healthier variety.

As it turns out Meow Mix, and many of the other leading brand name cat foods are formulated with high amounts of magnesium. If I had known about this I would have spent the extra fifteen, or twenty dollars a month buying a healthier band of cat food.

The incidence of FLUTD is 1%, which translates into hundreds of thousands of cat's lives being put into danger each year simply because the very same companies which spend millions of dollars a year on cute commercials about cats don't actually care enough about those cats to properly formulate the cat food they make.

Daughter red faced from crying about Koshi

Despite it all Koshi is home now, and I'm hoping, and praying that he remain unblocked. He seems to be doing well, but he looked fine when we brought him home the last time.

Koshi's XRay showing a tennis ball sized bladder!

I've been reading like crazy on the subject of FLUTD, and we are doing everything to keep stressors to a minimum. Stress plays a big role in FLUTD, almost as much as magnesium levels in cat food.

If Koshi gets blocked again, there will be no other choice, but to have his penis removed!

That's right, you read it right - Koshi would have to have an operation to have his penis removed! First his testicles, and now his penis? Is there no end to this insult upon Koshi's malehood?

But as my teenaged daughter said tonight, "Better Koshi without a penis, than a dead Koshi", and she's right. The vets consider it a last resort due to risk of infection, and the risk which is always associated with sedation.

Some people at work asked me today why I would spend nearly fifteen hundred dollars for a cat's medical treatment (the cost of a large screen high definition television), but what I noticed was that those most befuddled by our financial outlay were also those who never had a cat as a member of their family.

In the last three, and a half years I've grown from being a person who wouldn't even consider having a cat to a person who wouldn't consider not having several cats. Cats are just really great creatures.

My daughter insisted that we tap into money we had saved to help her purchase a car when she turns sixteen to help pay for the cost of Koshi's veterinary treatment - which has made me very proud of her.

Just want to add one last thing. We're not well to do. My family survives pay check to pay check, and we greatly appreciate how much fifteen hundred dollars is, but none of us could live with ourselves if we didn't try to help this little creature who has brought so much love, and joy into our lives. For some it's cocaine, alcohol, cigarettes, or even prostitutes - I guess for us it's cats.


allie said...

while my cat was living, i probably spent more on his healthcare than i have on my own.

daughter said...

thanks dad for deciding with me that the cat was more impoortant than my car. Its true i would much rather see my little koshi survive and live a happy life than getting a car right when i turn 16. i love koshi!!!!!!!!

Blevins said...

since July of 2005, I would say we have spent about $2,500 on vet bills alone for our two cats. When the oldest one had complications with pregnancy, we were forced to dip into our mortgage payment.

It is a shame how vet clinics pretty much extort money from people to treat their pets for illness. To just say with straight faces something to the effect of "well, if you dont have the money, we'll just have to let mittens die" is a sad statement to the greed and lack of compassion of those who supposedly "love" animals more than anyone else.

John said...

JP, sorry to hear about Koshi's problems. I'm going through some urinary tract problems with one of my dogs, and we just had to shell out a bunch of money for a surgery.
Best of luck, man.

email jp






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