Friday, June 10, 2011

Harley D. Update #2 "The Final Chapter of the Cone"

I got up early this morning to take Harley D. to the vet.  Today marks the day he has been waiting for - the day that I promised him would come - the day he can finally be freed from the dreaded CONE.  {Insert scary music here}.

It dawned on me, late yesterday... too late to call and ask the vet anyhow... that my cat may have to be dropped off and be put under for this procedure.  I mean, come on, I couldn't imagine Harley just sitting there quietly and perfectly still while some stranger f***s around with his ear - after all, if he could talk, he'd tell me that the last time that happened, he got the {cue scary music} CONE.  So, in light of my kitty epiphany,  it was suggested I get there early - DRAT!!  I really wanted to sleep in - ON A FRIDAY - that is such a rarity in my week, but alas, Harley is more important than a few extra Zzzz's so I set the alarm (DRAT!). 

As I was leaving the house, I mentioned that I would pick up breakfast on my way home.  I was craving Whataburger (local 24hr burger joint).  I drove to the vet, walked in and a young man asked me if I was "dropping off".
I said, "Well, I'm not sure.  I'm here to get stitches taken out of my cat's ear and I'm not sure if anesthesia is needed so you tell me, am I dropping off?" 
The vet tech said that its an in and out procedure, no anesthesia is needed.  Then he asked me if Harley was "aggressive".
I chuckled and told him, "No, however he does have that stupid {cue scary music} CONE around his neck and he hates it so if you free him of it, he may not want to leave your side, EVER, but he's not "aggressive".

The vet tech then told me that it would only take a few minutes.  He took Harley in back, and, no kidding, three minutes later, here he comes with Harley again, done!  It took three times longer at the drive-thru of Whataburger getting breakfast - something's wrong with that. 

Before leaving for the vet, and picking up breakfast, the tech asked me if I had any questions.  I asked him if Harley had any ear swelling ("No.") and if he had to wear the {cue scary music} CONE any longer.  I could have sworn I heard Harley sigh in relief right after the vet tech said, "No."
I then asked the vet, where "it" was, referring to the {cue the... Aww forget it, you get the picture!}  The tech said that "it" is in the there, and he motioned to Harley's carrier - the same carrier that Harley is now lying.  My first thought made me laugh out loud and I just couldn't stop from there.  Just then, the vet gave me a peculiar look.  I envisioned Harley attacking the shit out of that {cue the scary music} CONE as payback!  The thought stayed with me all the way out to the car, still laughing aloud, imagining Harley's screeches as he tears "it" to shreds.  I was flashing on the scene in the movie "Jurasic Park" when the "Velociraptors" are being fed in the bushes (at the beginning of the movie)... loud shrieks of terrifyingly angry hunger, leaves and bushes shaking violently as the dinosaurs devour their prey, yet the creatures are no where in "true" sight.  Harley is not a raptor of course but, in my mind, the {cue scary music}CONE was his prey!  I was even egging him on, "Come on, Harley, now's your chance - strike, strike!"

Yeah, well, it was all in my head.  Harley just wanted to go home. 

Harley has the typical after-flaw of a surgery like this - the crinkled, droopy ear, but at least it is not causing him pain, that I am aware of anyway, I mean, he hasn't given any indication of discomfort other than when he was jailed up in that stupid {cue scary music} CONE that he hated so much.

I am sure he is pleased that he can finally groom himself, instead of having me do it for him.  FYI:  I used a fine-tooth comb, I didn't do it the traditional "kitty" way...I love him very much but... eww!!
I am also sure he is pleased to FINALLY get that "itch" near his ear that has been driving him nuts for ten days.  I think he is pleased to not be sequestered in his room, away from his other kitty buds (I think he may have even missed Frankie, in his own twisted "I hate you  - stay the f*** away from me" kind of way).  But most of all, I think Harley is pleased to finally, (FINALLY!!!) be rid of that stupid (yep, you guessed it)... {cue scary music} CONE!

PS:  What ever happened to {cue the scary music}CONE?? 

Well, I'd tell ya but Harley has dirt on me regarding this incident in Vegas back in the 90's, so all I can say is, "What happens in the carrier, stays in the carrier!"{Insert scary music here}.

This is DaCanon blasting off!


Friday, June 3, 2011

Harley Update... Got Cone??

Here's an update on Harley D.  First off, I'm happy to report that the surgery went well.  He had no complications and the ear looks good.  His ear was, of course, shaved and he had a shaved spot along his front right leg... there was a bandage wrapped around this part of his leg.  I figured that is where they had placed an IV.  Thinking the bandage was no longer needed, I took it off, after all, it looked pretty tightly wrapped around there.  BOY WAS IT EVER!!  It was so tight that his front paw was swollen t three times its size and he couldn't walk on it.  It was probably numb to him.  I kept a close on eye it - my plan was to take him back to the vet if there were no signs of this swelling going down by morning.  When morning finally arrived, the swelling hadn't gone down significantly, but Harley did seem to be able to walk without struggle (that is, as much as possible with a cone collar around his neck.  More on that in a minute).  Since he didn't seem bothered by the swelled leg / paw, I decided not to rush him back to vet over it, but instead give him one more day and, if the swelling had not gone down by then, off we would go back to the vet.  As it turned out, the swelling had gone down completely by the next morning and Harley had his normal bounce back in his step (again, as much bounce as he could muster with a cone around his neck) with full kitty attitude on high alert!

At the risk of dating myself... I have always loved Saturday Night Live's, "The Coneheads", starring  Dan Aykroyd (Beldar) Jane Curtain (Prymaa) and Laraine Newman (Connie).  
 All ya need to know about Coneheads, click here

What they lacked, however, was a conecat.  

Harley has to wear one of those cone collars for ten days.  There is an official name for them, I just can't remember what they're actually called.   I know that the other critters are teasing Harley about this collar when I'm not home but the cone is to keep Harley from ripping those stitches out.  It took some adjusting for him, and some coaching on my part, to get him use to eating and drinking with it, but he doesn't seem to have many difficulties now that its been a few days.  His first night home (with the cone) was hard for him though, and I did feel sorry for him.  He was still groggy from the anesthesia and all that he has been through, so when I saw him struggling to balance himself with this cone thing around his neck, my heart went out to him, especially when he couldn't gauge the extra clearance needed just to step into the litter box.   He kept getting the bottom of the collar caught on the box's ledge (poor thing, all he wanted to do was pee, LOL).  I took the collar off and let him do his business without the stress and struggle, all the while I held myself ready to engage him at the first hint he was going to scratch that ear.  He didn't even try.  With the collar still off, he attempted a few bites of  food and that went well enough, considering he also had a dental cleaning too.  After about 30 minutes of collar-free, scratch-free, dazed and confused moments, I was ready to put the collar back on him.  That's when he rediscovered his favorite water bowl.  He couldn't get enough of the water.  Harley has this cute thing he does every time he takes a drink.  He scratches (uncovers) his water dish.  He has to do this several times before he even attempts to take a sip.  Then, just when you think he's done because he lifts his head and starts to walk away, he circles his dish and starts all over again.  On this night, he did this for a good ten minutes, at least.  He then "re-covered" his water dish - LOL.

I spread a blanket upon the floor for him to lay and rest more comfortably.  He normally sleeps on the bed but with that cone - lol  that darn cone - the poor thing didn't have the drive needed to jump up there on his first night and I didn't want to just put him up there myself  cuz, well, "what comes up, must eventually come down", and if I'm sleeping and he wants down, yet he is wearing that cone, his aim may be slightly off when landing on the floor and... splat.  (I know, I know, I worry...but I can't help but to think of these things, he's may baby boy and he needs help).  He laid right down on the blanket - he was pooped - he had a long, hard day and was done!!  I rubbed his belly (something he normally does not let me EVER do without kicking and scratching the shit out of me) and he purred himself right into a deep sleep.

The next morning, he was still adjusting to the collar but figured out a few maneuvers.  I have two other cats in the house, one of which Harley does not get along with, AT ALL, (Frankie Cat) so I have been keeping Harley separated from him, both day and night.  Usually, during the day, all cats have free range of the house, even though they choose to stay upstairs most of the time (cuz the dogs are downstairs) except the little orange kitty-man, "H. Davidson" -  he's the daredevil of the three.  So until Harley is out of his cone, I prefer to keep him separated from Frankie, for I am sure Frankie will take advantage of Harley's vulnerability and that ear could get torn open.  

Because I also have three large dogs in the house, one of them who thinks all cats should be her personal chew toys, I need to keep all of our cats closed in their bedrooms at night when we are sleeping, or we, the people, would never get any rest.  The sleeping arrangements are simple enough, all dogs in the master bedroom with the masters (hence the name, MASTER bedroom (arf!!)).  Since Harley practically raised Davidson from kitten-hood, Harley D. and H. Davidson sleep in one bedroom, and then that leaves Frankie Cat, (the one Harley fights with), he sleeps in the other spare bedroom.  The cats get along well enough with the dogs, except for Bailey, our newest rescue.  She was a one year old stray chocolate lab pup that found us not too long ago.  Apparently, she was (and still is) quite fond of chasing cats... hmmm... perhaps that's how she became a stray.  Nonetheless, we have managed to work out a system by investing in even more baby gates and tough it out because Baily deserves a stable and loving home too, all animals do, and so the cats must suck it up because they have also been in Bailey's paw prints themselves.  All of our animals have been rescued in one form or another - each with their own unique story to tell but I will save that for another blog entry.  As for this entry - I am going to end it by thanking you for reading today.  Harley is recovering nicely, and is slated to have his stitches removed next Friday.  He is jumping on the bed, and the dresser, and the table and the... well, you get the picture... he's being a happily purring conecat.