Friday, October 14, 2005

cats vs cars

a lot of cats hate getting in their carriers... or at least, they hate going in the carrier when you need them to. leland doesn't seem to have this problem. on the rare occasion when i get his carrier out of storage and open it up, he eagerly jumps on in there. i don't know if it's because he forgets the connotations behind this (ie that he's probably going to the vet) or because he simply likes his carrier.

he hates car rides, though. in fact, car rides are the only time when he meows with any consistency. he doesn't seem too bothered by being locked in a box and carried around, but as soon as i start up that car engine, he starts pleading with me. poor guy. what is it about being in cars that cats hate so much? the vibrations? the inertia from braking, accelerating, or going around turns? some high-pitched noise that we humans can't hear? it's not the carrier; it's the car. but why?

so we went in for his cardiac ultrasound this afternoon. after a car ride full of feline crying, we made it to noah's and were let into a patient room. we waited there for 10-15 minutes or so; leland spent much of that time voluntarily hanging out in the carrier rather than exploring the room. eventually the nurse (debbie) came by to grab him, telling me it would be about 20 minutes, and i read the indy star while i waited.

less than 10 minutes later, debbie reappared with cat in arms, and said, "i wish they were all this easy."

"that's what you said last time," i told her.

"i know! he's that easy to work with!"

leland immediately went back into his carrier and waited for us to leave. a couple minutes later, dr. kalt gave me the diagnosis: his ventricle walls are a little harder than they were last november, and his atrium is now officially dilated (last time it was not entirely dilated). so his condition has progressed a little bit in the last year, but no more than is to be expected for a progressive condition like hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

in short: a good prognosis. not as good as if he'd suddenly been cured or the condition went into remission, but about as good as i really could've asked for.

but i'm still a bit worried about the growth. gotta wait 'til monday at the earliest before i find anything out there. while i was at noah's i grabbed a brochure about laser surgery. i hadn't realized they even did laser surgery on pets, but i guess they do. that reassures me somewhat: if the growth needs to be removed (rather than simply drained, popped, or treated with antibiotics), it seems like they could do a pretty clean job of it using laser surgery. the brochure even mentioned something about laser surgery being appropriate around the mouth area, though i didn't get to read it very thoroughly.

but how much would that cost? the ultrasound itself was $195. i'm sure laser surgery, even a minor procedure, probably costs significantly more than that. yikes!

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