After surgery, Gucci the cat isn't out of the woods yet - Albuquerque Journal

After surgery, Gucci the cat isn’t out of the woods yet

Third in a series.

I worked carefully and fast. The tortoise shell kitty, Gucci, maintained strong vitals as I debrided (trimmed) the edges of her intestinal wounds and sutured them closed. A lot could still go wrong; I was counting on her robust immune system for help. On my way out of her abdomen I placed tubes and drains for daily irrigation over the next few days.

Small creatures can lose a lot of heat when their body cavities are open to room air. We’d kept our patient wrapped in a warm water circulating blanket during surgery but she had me worried. At a subnormal 92.4 degrees we quickly snuggled her into a thick towel surrounded by warm water bottles. Very slowly her paws started to flex and then her eyes opened. I couldn’t wait to ask her, “What the heck did you eat that poked eight holes in your guts?”

Instead, I called Gucci’s person, Jerri, at her business. Jerri was a hairdresser, so like veterinarians of that era, she worked on Saturdays. She picked up on the first ring. Through the whir of blow-dryers and background chattering I explained that surgery had gone well and that her sweet kitty was still under the influence but was sleeping it off. She would not be allowed to drive or lift heavy objects for several days. We would watch her like a hawk but, of course, there were no guarantees. Infection risk was still high.

We stayed late so Jerri could visit Gucci after she finished the day’s last coloring. She held her swaddled cat tight against her chest as I explained the details of what lay ahead. I remember this odd feeling as we spoke, that Jerri was looking at my hair more than my eyes. Maybe she wanted to trade her work with scissors for mine with a scalpel.

As I escorted our client out the door I explained my puzzlement about the cause of those intestinal wounds. What could her indoor cat have gotten into?

Next week: Dental hygiene at fault.

⋄ For help with behavior problems, you can sign-up for a Zoom Group Conference on my website, drjeffnichol.com.


Dr. Jeff Nichol is a residency-trained veterinary behaviorist. He provides consultations in person and in groups by Zoom (505-792-5131). Each week he shares a blog and a Facebook Live video to help bring out the best in pets and their people. Sign up at no charge at drjeffnichol.com. Post pet questions on facebook.com/drjeffnichol or by mail to 4000 Montgomery NE, Albuquerque, NM, 87109.

 

Home » ABQnews Seeker » After surgery, Gucci the cat isn’t out of the woods yet


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

taboola desktop

1
They had called 911 before to calm down their ...
ABQnews Seeker
Parents say in the past officers ... Parents say in the past officers would calm down son
2
Country singer Jay Allen to perform at conference for ...
ABQnews Seeker
2022 Alzheimer's Association New Mexico Chapter ... 2022 Alzheimer's Association New Mexico Chapter Caregiver Conference It's been a wild ...
3
Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema switches to independent
ABQnews Seeker
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Democratic Sen. Kyrsten ... WASHINGTON (AP) -- Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona announced Friday she has registered as an independent, a renegade move that could bolster her ...
4
ABQ's Kickstand Cafe celebrates new ownership this weekend
ABQnews Seeker
The North Valley business will hold ... The North Valley business will hold its grand reopening this weekend.
5
Pet Care: Does your dog want to attack every ...
ABQnews Seeker
Trapped by the leash, your pooch ... Trapped by the leash, your pooch panics and reacts defensively
6
Katy Duhigg in line to lead Rules Committee
ABQnews Seeker
She will fill a vacancy created ... She will fill a vacancy created with Sen. Daniel Ivey-Soto gave up the post
7
Albuquerque Little Theatre brings 'A Tuna Christmas' to stage
ABQnews Seeker
Albuquerque Little Theatre gets in the ... Albuquerque Little Theatre gets in the holiday spirit with "A Tuna Christmas."The prod ...
8
Lawmakers discuss new oversight for NM prisons
ABQnews Seeker
Hefty legal settlements over past year ... Hefty legal settlements over past year draw attention, calls for action
9
'Our new Santa': Good Samaritan gifts bike after clothing ...
ABQnews Seeker
Crime occurred Tuesday night at Northeast ... Crime occurred Tuesday night at Northeast Albuquerque nonprofit