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There is no place like home

There is no place like home

My husband, Marc, and I didn’t know what to expect on Wednesday, the day after our cat, Alex, had his tail amputated. We were told to call the hospital at 10:30 after the surgeons had time to examine all the patients. We weren’t sure if Alex would be discharged that day, or would need to stay longer. Since the hospital is an hour away from our house, and both of our offices are at least a half hour closer to the nearest parkway, but in the opposite direction from the hospital, Marc and I decided to take one car to work, with me dropping him off, and then continuing on my way, in case Alex was able to come home.

 

We were both on pins and needles. We were anxious to know how Alex did the night before. Marc called the hospital at the assigned time and spoke to the surgeon. He was told that Alex was doing well, but he REALLY wanted to come home. I guess he wasn’t thrilled with the accommodations. Who can blame him?

 

We reached the hospital an hour later, and the girls at the front desk asked where our carrier was. We explained that Alex doesn’t travel well in one, so we would just be carrying him. “Who is your cat?” they asked. When Marc gave Alex’s full name, they replied, “Oh, him. He is really not happy here. You can go into the back and take him out of the cage yourself.” I can only imagine what Alex’s behavior was like.

 

We spent a few minutes with the nurse going over Alex’s post-op instructions, and then we went back into hospital. It was strange passing the tables where we knew Alex was treated the day before. When we arrived at his cage, it took Alex a few seconds to realize we really were us. He eagerly went into Marc’s arms.

 

Alex was amazing on the car ride home. He snuggled up in my arms, and was alert. I live in a town house with pretty much every room on a different level. In addition, we have a very open floor plan with minimal doors. In fact, our bedroom doesn’t have any doors. So, in order to keep Alex confined, Marc, Alex and I moved into a spare bedroom.

 

We brought Alex into this room as soon as we got home. We expected Alex to be groggy and fall right asleep. He wasn’t. He kept on going into his litter box and just sitting there. In fact, several times he looked like he was about to fall asleep there. Marc’s brother said his cat did the same thing following the amputation of her tail. They both must have had the sensation that they had to go to the bathroom but couldn’t. As soon as he was able to take care of all his business, he stopped hanging out in the litter.

 

The hospital sent Alex home in a soft cone. It took about forty-five minutes for him to figure out how to maneuver himself to get to his stiches. So, with Marc keeping a close eye on him, I headed to a local vet to get a replacement hard collar.

 

On Wednesday, Marc and I didn’t leave the room at all, except to answer the door for a pizza delivery. Alex was very uncomfortable. He also was feverously trying to bite off his pain patch. Marc and I were worried he would succeed and also manage to outsmart his cone again. We kept constant watch over him.

 

Marc and I were fortunate that we were both able to work from home on Thursday and Friday so we able to keep an eye on Alex. Thursday morning, Alex woke up, and it was clear that he was feeling a little better. Hearing him purr was music to our ears. Marc even saw him wag his stump.

 

Later in the day, Alex realized that he was able to stick his front paw through the cone. The gauze that tied it wasn’t thick enough. So Marc and I fastened one of my scarves into the cone to make it more secure. Alex wasn’t thrilled with my choice of a scarf, as it was too “girly” for his liking. Fortunately, he sent a picture to his girlfriend Gracie, and when she told him that he still looked as handsome as ever, he no longer was concerned….

 

By Thursday night, Alex was wagging his stump at regular intervals.  It was beyond amazing to see.  With every wiggle, Marc and my heart filled with pride.  Sadly, late Thursday night, Alex became pained.  His whines and cries tore at our hearts, but fortunately the pain medicine kicked in quickly, and he fell fast asleep.

 

 

 

Friday morning, Alex seemed even happier than the day before. He was eating well and playing. He had a really good day. Marc and I left the room for several hours at a time, as we wanted him to start to get used to the fact that we won’t be able to stay with him 24/7 forever. He didn’t seem to mind.

 

We didn’t have to dispense any pain medication Friday night, and this morning we removed his pain patch. We try to remove his cone for several hours at a time throughout the day so that he can eat in peace, as well as just get a break. During this time, either Marc or I shadow him like a hawk.

 

I can’t begin to express how proud I am of this little guy. He was such a trouper, and continues to amaze me. I don’t think he even realizes that he is missing his tail.

 

It is amazing at what a difference a week makes. This time last week, Marc and I were beside ourselves not knowing what to do to help Alex. We were trying every non-evasive solution possible unsuccessfully. And now, a week later, Alex is missing a tail, but he is happier than he has been in a while.

 

It helps that not only does he have his parents taking care of him; he has a special nurse looking over him.

Thanks Terry!

 

Again, thank you all so much for all your thoughts and prayers. Each and every one of your comments has helped me greatly during this difficult time. We are still waiting on the biopsy results, but the legions on Alex’s mouth and paws are healing. So we are hopeful that it means if the tumor on his tail was cancerous, nothing spread.

 

56 thoughts on “There is no place like home

    1. Hannah & Lucy… thank you sou much for all your support… I am delighted that Alex is doing so well too. We were able to remove his pain patch yesterday… Each day he improves a little more….

  1. In the first picture it was almost like the eye of death lol. I’m glad he is doing so much better now and lets hope that they got all the cancer!

  2. We are SOOOO glad that Alex is home and doing well … the power of purrs and purrayers is just pawsome! Please give Alex ((((hugs)))) from all of us!
    Purrs and headbutts,
    Sabrina, Sam, Simon and Momma Jan

    1. sabrina, sam, simon &jan, you are right.. there is nothing better than the power of purrs an purrayers…. I know everyone’s purrs really helped Alex pull through, as well as helped me & emotionally through this difficult time. I gave Alex hugs from you all, now please accepts some hugs from me and him…

  3. Poor Alex. He has been such a brave guy through all this, but you have certainly stayed with him. Hope he continues to heal and doesn’t figure out how to get past the cone again.

    1. Jan, he really has been so brave… It is amazing.. It is also amazing how friendly and trusting he is now. We have had family staying with us and he is letting people come, check him out and play a little…. I hope he can’t figure out how to get out of his cone either…Isn’t it amazing how smart these guys are?

  4. Needless to say, Gracie is thrilled seeing the pictures of her Mancat Alex. All of us continue to seen so many healing purrs to the handsome one. Keep going strong Alex!!!

    1. Brian & Gracie, alex loves being called the handsome one…. He is so happy that he was able to make his best girl happy… He is ready to do another photo shoot! It is pretty wild looking at pictures of him. When you live with a pet who isn’t well, sometimes you don’t notice the subtle changes. But the other day, I was looking at pictures I took of him on my phone during the last few weeks. When I looked in order, I saw how he seemed to be more uncomfortable and unhappy each day. However, now, cone and all, he looks happier…. Thanks again for all your support… Alex & I send big hugs (and alex sends gracie big kisses too)

  5. This is such happy news! Alex, the Cats here think your behind is quite fetching. I love how his skin color matches his fur. When Felix had his knee repaired you could see the stripes on his skin, too, peach and cream.
    Continued purrs and prayers for your little boy, he’s a real trouper.
    xx Trish

    1. Trish, I agree with your cats… his tush is quite fetching 🙂 Felix must have looked so cute. I don’t know why, but I was suprised to see the black spot on his stump, even though I knew that was the color of his fur….

  6. Wow, Alex, you really are doing well and we love your scarf around your cone. It makes you look very handsome. We agree with Gracie. By the way, that picture is terrific of Gracie. Glad Alex has his own nurse. We are still sending lots and lots of purrs and lots of hugs too. We know this has been are really rough time for all. We just know things are going to get better and better now. Have a good week end all of you.

  7. We’re relieved and happy to read that Alex is doing well. Continued purrs, purrayers and Light for his recovery and for the biopsy results. We appreciate the update!

  8. I am so delighted that Alex is doing so well! Must be his superb upbringing!!! I had to laugh about everyone saying at the vet’s office that he was ready to go home and not happy. One time when I took Holly to the vet and she was not feeling her best she hissed and growled and was very unladylike. I felt I had to continue to apologize for her behavior time and time again . She never acted like that before and I felt like I had a misbehaving child. They just laughed and said she was stressed, which she was, and that it was fine. I know Alex is going to thrive now that he is home and I have good feelings about the biopsy results!!! Hugs and pats and purrs!!!

  9. Alex seems to have things pretty good, all things considered. His own private nurse, and two full time servants at his beck and call.

    Purrrrrring that the lump was just a lump, and that Alex recovers soonest.

    1. Lee County – Alex does have it good… while he likes his round the clock servants, we can’t compare to his pretty nurse… But, I am OK with him replacing me with a new “best girl”. Thanks for the purrs… we are purring for the same thing.

  10. I’ve been so bogged down with school I haven’t been making the rounds of other blogs. Oh am so sorry to hear about your cat. But it seems like he’s holding his own. I’ll be thinking good thoughts for you and Alex.

    1. Dawn, thank you so much… It has been difficult, but in the scheme of things, not so bad…. He is doing better each day, seems happy and is eating well….

    1. TX furiends, thank you so much…. Each day he improves a little. What is shocking me is how happy he is. He has let friends & family (some that he isn’t too close with) visit him in his “recovery room” I will take more pictures…. I love to look at them & see his improvement… Hugs!

  11. Awww beautiful Alex!!!! You are so a fighter!! You are a brave beautiful boy!! yay!! Me and Charlie love that sweet Gracie is also there to help you get better!! Take care
    x

    1. Jenn & Charlie – I know… Isn’t alex a lucky chap to have a beautiful and kind nurse like Gracie? He is such a fighter… He is really blowing me away…

  12. I want you to know that as I was reading this it was quite dark outside (we are waiting for storms to hit), there were rumbles of thunder in the background. By the time I finished, I looked up and the SUN was bursting (and still is) through one of the clouds. It is my Angel Bobo smiling at what a brave boy Alex is, he is smiling about Alex’s “Nurse Girlfriend” Gracie, he is smiling because Alex has some amazing parents…..he is smiling because he is certain (and so am I) that Alex is on the road to recovery!!!! Thank you for this wonderful update.
    The only thing I didn’t like was the nurse at the hospital saying “Oh HIM…you can go and take him out of the cage yourself”….that doesn’t sit well with me!!!
    Much love to all of you!!!!!!!

    1. Oh Caren… You made me cry….. again… HUGS! I am sure you are right. Your angel Bobo is smiling down at Alex and you…..I know how hard yesterday was for you. I hope today is better… Alex is lucky man. But so is his parents. We are so lucky to have such a wonderful support system, and amazing friends (including you). As for the nurse, I thought it was funny. I know how sweet alex can be, but he also has a temper…. and is very spoiled… So, there is no doubt in my mind he was causing trouble. I actually found it comforting that he was, as if he was too calm, I would have worried he really didn’t feel well. This way, at least, I know he was acting himself.

    1. Island Cats – Thanks… I will tell him you said he looked very mancatly.. I was telling him he looked very metrosexual, and that was a very cool style, but I know it would mean more to him coming from you guys than his “silly mom”

    1. Forty paws – he is being a real trouper.. We try to give him some cone free breaks in the AM and dinner time… he is so funny, he knows we like to have him cone free for when he eats, so as soon as we re-cone him he heads to his food bowl in the hopes we will feel bad that he is starving and take it off again. Sadly for him, we know he is a faker…

  13. Good to hear that Alex is recovering well. He is so lucky to have such loving parents.
    He is looking very handsome in the floral scarf.
    Purrs,
    Momo

    1. Momo – thank you so much….he is really amazing me.. I can’t believe how much he improves each day. I was worried removing his pain patch yesterday, but he hasn’t had one issue… I am loving the floral scarf… I think it is very metrosexual 🙂

  14. We have not visited your blog before but read about Aelx on the CB and wanted to stop by to say hello. We’re so glad that Alxe’s op went well and that he is healing nicely!

    Purrs,
    The Chans

    1. Poupounette gang – thank you so much for visiting, and for your wonderful words… Alex has been quite the trouper throughout this, and like I, is so thankful for all the support from the CB

  15. This is such an incredible story. And you are so totally going the extra mile for him and giving him everything he could possibly need. I can only imagine your pride when you see that little stump wiggle. Three very very loud cheers for Alex. We have our paws crossed here all will continue to go well. Loads of love to you all.

  16. Alex
    We are sooooo very happy to see you home recuperating.
    You look fabulous and we will continue to send healing purrs until you are 100% ok!

    Purrs for Alex
    Abby

    1. Abby, thanks so much…. my mom keeps telling me I look fabulous too, but it means more coming from someone NOT my mom….Thanks for the purrs… Since my test results came back cancer, please purr that my face clears up. I really don’t want to have to do more… Hugs, Alex

    1. Thanks so much Kendra. He really is a fighter…. He seems so happy. I am just concerned that his mouth clears up, as his tail ended up being cancer.

  17. Alex is one brave and awesome Mancat! So glad to hear he is doing well and feeling better. Kudos to you and Marc for handling everything so well. We will continue to purr for Alex’s continued recovery, healing and health and for good test results. (And thanks so much for your kind words and purrs for Clooney.)

    1. It has been hard, but you will handle it just as well for Clooney.. We really don’t have much choice… We got Alex’s tests results back, and he did have cancer. So now we just have to focus on his lips. Hopefully, they will heal… Alex and I will be purring for Clooney, and you too. Hang in there. Clooney needs you. Hugs

    1. Milo & Alfie, he has had a rough time of it, but he is one strong, tough man…. He is a fighter, and seems to be healing great. He still has his “happy” so that makes me happy… Purrs back at you…

  18. Reading your blog posts months after the fact made getting through them a little easier, because I know Alex is still with you at this point and is doing well. Your pain and anguish is so clear and your love for him so evident. So glad that surgery was an option and that it was so successful.. (and that pict of his shaved rump is priceless)

    1. Connie – thank you so much…I loved that shaved rump too… so cute. It is really amazing how Alex did during this difficult time. We were very lucky that we had great vets (including my husband’s cousin consulting from out of town) who treated Alex. It was really remarkable how well he did, although at the time, it was extremely hard for all of us. Looking at him now, you would never think he went through anything… He is so sweet and happy (much more than he ever was – and friendlier too). He often wiggles his little stumpy which always makes me so happy.. Alex & I are so happy to meet you… Hugs H&A

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