So, I got back from Europe, then started by new job. Then the American Inns of Court started, then the High School Mock Trial, then the County Bar Association, then Jupiter got sick . . .
That’s right, but I’ll tell you in advance that the story has a reasonably happy ending.
A little more than two weeks ago, on a Sunday, I noticed that the left side of Jupiter’s face was just a little swollen. It was obvious that I would have to take him to the vet. Then, the next morning, I noticed a bit of pus coming from his mouth. This increased my urgency.
When I took him in, he was diagnosed with an abscess in his mouth, which was pretty much what I thought it would be. The vet prescribed antibiotics, and I scheduled surgery for the next day.
I brought him in at 7:30 the next day and they gave me the forms to fill out. Among the various optional procedures that I could choose to be done during the surgery were IV fluids and a full blood panel. I chose to do those, mainly because Jupiter had had some kidney problems in the past. I figured the fluid was important to make sure he stayed hydrated and keep his liver functioning. I chose a full blood panel because he’s getting up there in age, a bit---he’s maybe 11 or 12 by now.
I checked in on him that afternoon, and they said the surgery went well. Then, later, they called to say that his blood glucose was high. They ran a few more tests to rule out a couple other things, and concluded that he has diabetes. We switched his diet right away to a high-protein canned food, and he’s been on insulin for almost a week. I’ll take him in on Sunday a couple times so we can do some glucose tests at various times, and we may need to adjust the dose.
But even just since the surgery, I’ve seen a remarkable improvement. It’s amazing what you notice when things change all at once. Jupiter’s coat improved almost immediately, as did his appetite. He’s now the one who yells the loudest when it’s mealtime, and he’s been really stuffing his face lately. There’s also a difference in attitude. He seems more alert, active, and just more engaged in the world. It’s fantastic.
Of course, it’s not all sunshine and butterflies. The initial diagnosis (including the surgery) was quite pricy. He’s on a name-brand insulin at the moment, and it’s also pricy. And I’m expecting a bit more expense when we run the blood tests. This is a relatively small problem for me, but it is a little inconvenient, coming as it does during the period in which I wait for my first paycheck from my new job. Still, it’s manageable. A little more significantly is the fact that I’m tied to Jupiter now. I need to be home to give him his injections at the right times, so some of my activities will be limited. For the most part, I don’t expect this to be a problem, but it does mean that I need to arrange for expert care even if I leave the house overnight.
But overall, I’m pleased that we caught this. Jupiter has always been a great cat, and I’m happy to help him by making sure his quality of life is the best it can be. And with proper care, his diabetes won’t have much, if any, impact on his lifespan. Getting that blood test was definitely money well spent.
So, without further ado, here’s Jupiter in his new role as hungry, hungry hippo:
Have a great weekend!