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Kowboy Visits the Vet
Kowboy
ďJoseph, thereís something wrong with Kowboy.Ē my wife says as I enter the room. Sure enough, my American Shorthair Silver Tabby cat is leaning against the wall like Jabba the Hut from Star Wars and mewing plaintively. When youíve owed cats as long as we have, you know instantly when something is wrong.

Eating dinner while watching American Idol results is indefinitely postponed, but I gulped half my wine anyway. At eight oíclock at night, our vet is closed but the emergency vet is open. With Kowboy in his carrier, off we go.

As we pull into the parking lot of the fancy emergency vet hospital, I can feel my credit card balance heading for the stratosphere. Judging by the spectacular granite countertops, tile and the fish tanks built into the wall this ainít gonna be cheap.

Everyone is very polite, compassionate and professional. Ironically, I grab a Money magazine from the rack and a Cat Fancy for my wife as we are escorted to a private room. Kowboy, carrier and all, is taken away. The Money magazine had an article on how to save for retirement. They left out ďDo not own pets to which youíve become unreasonably emotionally attached.Ē

There is a bulletin board on the wall nearly overflowing with hand-written cards thanking the staff for curing Fluffy of what ailed her, many with pictures. One older dog didnít make it and his owner waxed philosophically. It was sad and poignant and if I may be so bold, a bit long-winded.

The cute young blonde vet knocks and enters and has a diagnosis. Kowboy has a blocked urethra. He canít pee. She shows us the x-ray on her computer screen and his bladder is wayyy full, but fortunately he has no bladder stones that would require surgery. She escorts us back to our room while she prepares an estimate. Iím thinking if I can get my cat out of here for under a grand, Iíll be pretty happy.

Iím basing this on my $250.00 vet bill from last week, when I took Charlie, Monster and Kowboy for their shots. My vet noticed that Kowboy had tarter on his teeth and suggested a cleaning. I told her I thought that would be at least a couple hundred bucks. ďNo, more like $350.00.Ē she said. When the vet technician reminded her that Kowboy has a heart murmur, she quickly recanted and said he would have to see a cardiologist before she could anesthetize him for the cleaning. That would make the bill more like $700.00. Now I love my cats, but there is no way Iím spending $700.00 or more to get a seven-year-old catís teeth cleaned. Hell, Iíve got a missing tooth of my own that I havenít replaced because Iím too cheap. I cannot reconcile the thought that my cat has a cardiologist while some fellow humans on the planet are too poor to even see a doctor.

The vet tech returns with our typewritten estimate and itís a good thing we are sitting down. Itís going to cost between fifteen hundred and seventeen hundred dollars to cure Kowboy. I wrote those figures out so you would know I didnít make a typographical error. My wife loves these cats, but from the look on her face, she knows Kowboyís health coverage is coming right out of her landscaping budget and she is not happy. After a brief flirt with denial and bargaining, we accept the terms and treatment begins immediately. Iíve got to laugh, itís either laugh or cry. We really have no choice. My wife can live with a smaller mulch pile, but the thought that she killed Kowboy when she had the wherewithal to cure him would haunt her the rest of her life, and Iím not letting that happen.

In a telephone call this morning, the vet said Kowboy was doing fine and everything went as well as it could have. She has flushed his bladder and will remove his catheter when she returns at 5:30 p.m. They will keep him under observation and we will pick him up tomorrow morning, after they put another $500-$700.00 on my charge card.

i136.photobucket.com/albums/q186/Trebruchet/DSC01492-1.jpg
 
Theory_Execution
"Kowboy has a blocked urethra."

Holymotherfuckingshitmunchingbrainrapingballbaggedcuntpunch!

I dont know if I can read further.
 
Bob of QF
Sucks, man.... glad your kid [cat] is gonna be okay, though.

I know exactly how much cats can represent...

I'm currently owned by two myself.
Quantum Junction: Use both lanes

Reality is that which is left, after you stop believing.
 
Hypatia
Kowboy wrote:
ďJoseph, thereís something wrong with Kowboy.Ē my wife says as I enter the room. Sure enough, my American Shorthair Silver Tabby cat is leaning against the wall like Jabba the Hut from Star Wars and mewing plaintively. When youíve owed cats as long as we have, you know instantly when something is wrong.

Eating dinner while watching American Idol results is indefinitely postponed, but I gulped half my wine anyway. At eight oíclock at night, our vet is closed but the emergency vet is open. With Kowboy in his carrier, off we go.

As we pull into the parking lot of the fancy emergency vet hospital, I can feel my credit card balance heading for the stratosphere. Judging by the spectacular granite countertops, tile and the fish tanks built into the wall this ainít gonna be cheap.

Everyone is very polite, compassionate and professional. Ironically, I grab a Money magazine from the rack and a Cat Fancy for my wife as we are escorted to a private room. Kowboy, carrier and all, is taken away. The Money magazine had an article on how to save for retirement. They left out ďDo not own pets to which youíve become unreasonably emotionally attached.Ē

There is a bulletin board on the wall nearly overflowing with hand-written cards thanking the staff for curing Fluffy of what ailed her, many with pictures. One older dog didnít make it and his owner waxed philosophically. It was sad and poignant and if I may be so bold, a bit long-winded.

The cute young blonde vet knocks and enters and has a diagnosis. Kowboy has a blocked urethra. He canít pee. She shows us the x-ray on her computer screen and his bladder is wayyy full, but fortunately he has no bladder stones that would require surgery. She escorts us back to our room while she prepares an estimate. Iím thinking if I can get my cat out of here for under a grand, Iíll be pretty happy.

Iím basing this on my $250.00 vet bill from last week, when I took Charlie, Monster and Kowboy for their shots. My vet noticed that Kowboy had tarter on his teeth and suggested a cleaning. I told her I thought that would be at least a couple hundred bucks. ďNo, more like $350.00.Ē she said. When the vet technician reminded her that Kowboy has a heart murmur, she quickly recanted and said he would have to see a cardiologist before she could anesthetize him for the cleaning. That would make the bill more like $700.00. Now I love my cats, but there is no way Iím spending $700.00 or more to get a seven-year-old catís teeth cleaned. Hell, Iíve got a missing tooth of my own that I havenít replaced because Iím too cheap. I cannot reconcile the thought that my cat has a cardiologist while some fellow humans on the planet are too poor to even see a doctor.

The vet tech returns with our typewritten estimate and itís a good thing we are sitting down. Itís going to cost between fifteen hundred and seventeen hundred dollars to cure Kowboy. I wrote those figures out so you would know I didnít make a typographical error. My wife loves these cats, but from the look on her face, she knows Kowboyís health coverage is coming right out of her landscaping budget and she is not happy. After a brief flirt with denial and bargaining, we accept the terms and treatment begins immediately. Iíve got to laugh, itís either laugh or cry. We really have no choice. My wife can live with a smaller mulch pile, but the thought that she killed Kowboy when she had the wherewithal to cure him would haunt her the rest of her life, and Iím not letting that happen.

In a telephone call this morning, the vet said Kowboy was doing fine and everything went as well as it could have. She has flushed his bladder and will remove his catheter when she returns at 5:30 p.m. They will keep him under observation and we will pick him up tomorrow morning, after they put another $500-$700.00 on my charge card.

i136.photobucket.com/albums/q186/Trebruchet/DSC01492-1.jpg


Awwww, I'm so glad Kowboy is going to be alright. He looks like a real sweetie.

I totally sympathize with you, on all levels. We've been there too with how much we love them and are attached to them and want them to be well and not in pain, as well as with the jaw-dropping, heart stopping bills that can result when they're ailing and we can't allow them to suffer, just as we wouldn't allow each other to suffer (if we can at all help it).

Well, in some respects we can let it go with 'money comes, and money goes' - sure, it would go for something useful or needed, but these little guys are our family and just as worthy, if not more, than any 'thing' the funds would otherwise go for.

Well written Kowboy, and here's to happy, easy peeing for the other Kowboy (and for us all!).
 
catman
Kowboy: That was indeed excellently written. I can empathize with you concerning the finances. I had a cat named Hobble who had a malignant swelling appear on the outside of one of her thighs. As it kept reappearing, I had it removed by the vet four times. The last time he did it, the vet told me that he wouldn't be able to do it again because there was no skin left to repair it. When it reappeared a fifth time, I had to have her euthanized. At least she was 14 years, 11 months old. It still hurts to think about it.

I'm glad your beautiful cat's expensive veterinary treatment had a happier ending!
 
Hypatia
Having to make the decision to have a seriously ill or injured pet euthanized is an extremely difficult and emotionally wrenching thing to have to do. It isn't quite so difficult in the sense that you know you're doing the best thing for the animal, but it is absolutely the hardest in every other way.

I'm so glad we can make these decisions for animals. Now if we could just get to a place in society where we can make the same decision for ourselves and have assistance rather than resistance.

But, that's another topic for another thread, and one I think we've touched on a couple of times.
 
Skeeve
Glad to hear Kowboy is going to be alright.

This is why I won't have pets until I'm rich and famous.

I don't even have health insurance for myself, so I can't take on the responsibility of another being.
"The world is my country, and do good is my religion." - Thomas Paine
 
seeker
Ouch, that's a punch to the stomach. Glad to hear Kowboy is otherwise okay.
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." - George Santayana
 
Kowboy
Kowboy came home tonight and seems to be in good spirits. He tried to pee in his new private litterbox, but just a dribble. His appetite is good; he pushed Monster out of the food dish and Monster hissed at his rudeness. I took him away and fed him his exclusive prescription canned cat food. He was quite pleased. He apparently passed the sniff test administered by Charlie and Monster after dinner.

Iíve got a boatload of prescription medicines to administer on a schedule and my charge card is $1,548.00 heavier in addition to the $1,000.00 down payment. For context, someone told me you can drill a well in Africa to serve an entire village for $4,000.00. Humans are thirsty so my cat can pee. Go figure.

Everybodyís watching television in the basement and chilliní out. Kowboyís sitting in front of the sliding screen door, one of his favorite spots, and licking the shaved area of his front leg where they inserted the IV. I told him if he licks his unit too much, heís going to get the cone around his head at the follow-up visit at the vet tomorrow. Heís not a very good listener.
 
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