Vincent’s news and other thoughts

It’s been two days since I last wrote about Vincent.

The last two days have been packed with things to do, but it’s all been good, because our Double Charity Donation received four orders!

And there have been an overwhelming number of neutering applications, which is all good. But the saddest part is, on Wednesday, we received 17 applications which saw me processing them for hours until midnight. And why so, because 5 were rejected and again, I had to contact the applicants one by one. Honestly, it pains me having to reject applications because I know the neutering has been done and we WANT to pay out our aid to help, but the applicant simply cannot get things right (and they are not first-time applicants too). What if we overlooked all these requirements then? But we cannot, as this will not be fair to those applicants who strive and make an effort to get things right. There are those (like En Frankie John) who would drive all the way from KL to place the form and receipt in our postbox when he is “almost” late. And there are those like Wong Yee Heng and the whole group of friends who would immediately replace a form if even if a small detail is missing. So, how can whiners be given the easy way out, right?

So, no. We are sticking to our policies. What good are rules and policies if we break them ourselves? So no, as sad as it is, those who don’t comply, we will not pay.

Now, back to Vincent’s stories. Let me post some photos here.

Vincent has been fussy lately. He got tired of raw food and only wanted to eat Cindy’s Tender Chicken or the other Cindy flavours, so I ordered new stock for him, plus Monge as well.

On some days, he does the staring game again (which brings back memories of those days when we did the staring game at every meal). That’s when I’d have to offer different foods, one by one, until I get it right.

So, yes, Vincent isn’t getting better and we all know that. There is not turning back from kidney failure. It will only get worse. Just how fast will it deteriorate, I don’t know and I don’t want to think about it though I have read about other CKD cats, what happened to them eventually, and I am scared. But let’s not go there for now.

And the vet is right when she said Vincent will not hit 4kg. His weight has been fluctuating, and this morning, he weighed 3.6kg. Guess I’m thankful that at least he can maintain it at 3.6kg and not go down. I think in the last two days, he must have gone down a bit – I know when I carry him. But as of this morning (before breakfast), it was 3.6kg and I’m grateful for that.

He also needs 250ml fluids daily. The vet had already said that I should do between 220ml and 250ml. Not any less. Vincent needs hydration every day. His pinch test isn’t fantastic. Despite the fluids, he is still a bit dehydrated.

Nowadays, his only medication is Fortekor, Alucid (the antacid) and Tramadol. As advised by the vet, I don’t give Azodyl anymore because it’s so, so stressful giving him that dreadful capsule. So, we have 3 weeks’ supply of Azodyl, untouched. Fortekor is supposed to reduce the protein leakage (but based on the last urine test, it didn’t seem to be working) and Alucid is for the mouth ulcers, stomach acid and phophate binding. Tramadol is the cream painkiller, which is rubbed into the inside of the ear.

Vincent doesn’t mind Fortekor (I think it tastes good). He doesn’t like Alucid (one-sixth of a tablet) but he hates the liquid antacid more, and that is why the vet resorted to this tablet form. Tramadol, as a cream, shouldn’t be a problem, but he still shakes his ear after it’s applied. Apart from these, There’s the nose drop (the runny nose is off and on but thank goodness the cold rainy weather has stopped now) and whenever I can, the multi-vit, Complivit (Vincent hates this and I can only sneak it in one time). I think I might try NutriGel Plus. This multi-vit seems to help reduce his rock-licking tendencies.

Vincent’s bad breath has returned. I don’t know why. I checked his mouth and my untrained eye does not seem to notice any ulcers on the tongue or the sides of his mouth. But the bad breath is there again. At one time, during the “best of times” when he started recovering, the bad breath was totally gone.

All said, Vincent is still on Tramadol daily and his appetite is reasonably good, so I guess that’s okay for now.

He IS very fussy with food, though.

So two days ago, I decided to try Primal. He didn’t want Primal earlier on, but now, he doesn’t want Cubgrub or Coco&Joe’s either.

To my surprised, he whacked Primal! Yes, licked it all clean.

So, I quickly ordered two new packs.

I normally only give Chicken & Salmon, but decided to order Turkey as well. It’s not easy to get raw turkey (Cubgrub’s turkey is very expensive while C&J’s is turkey+chicken, not pure turkey). So, looks like Primal’s turkey is my best option for pure turkey.

Vincent didn’t like the turkey on the first day and neither did Tabs. Guess who liked it?

Ginger.

Yes, Ginger gorged up his Primal turkey. I was surprised as Ginger is also a fussy eater.

And so did the Cow Clan.

In general, the Cow Clan is easier to feed than the HouseCats (Ginger, Heidi, Tabs and Vincent).

Tabs LOVES Chicken & Salmon. She loves it so much that she forgot all her manners and stole a Primal nugget from the container, went to a corner to hide and enjoy her “loot”. It was all too cute, actually.

I give Primal rehydrated even though Tabs loves it dry.

Heidi has not been too well lately too. But for her, it’s up and down. I guess she is an old cat (we don’t know how old she is as she came as “an old cat”, according to the vet). Sometime last week, she clearly wasn’t looking too good. But this could be due to the fact that Vincent had taken over her space beside me on the bed, so Heidi had to wait outside the bedroom door and could no longer come in.

You know, its’ all about cat rules. Their own rules.

So, we think Heidi got really upset. And didn’t have much of an appetite for a few days. She only likes homecooked food and canned, and doesn’t eat Cubgrub or Coco&Joe’s. Funnily though, she loves Primal Chicken & Salmon, so that got her eating again and all is quite well now.

But Heidi isn’t the only cat who was upset.

Ginger is upset too.

And why is Ginger upset?

We think he’s just very jealous of Vincent.

Why does Vincent get a whole room to himself? Why does Ginger get this “subcut thingie” every day? And why does Vincent get to eat as often as he likes while I don’t get all my dimsums?  It isn’t fair.  

So, to retaliate, Ginger has been busy going up and downstairs to check out what Vincent is doing. He surveys the room and intimidates Vincent. He even jumps up on the table and checks out the subcut fluid bottle. And he whines.

Yes, he whines until……..(aargh!!).

And he sprays on our blankets and cushions.

Well, Vincent retaliated the other day and sprayed on my blanket. Yes, specifically on my blanket to get a clear message through there. I know who sprayed simply because Ginger’s urine smells while Vincent’s doesn’t, being a kidney patient.

Heidi enjoying her rehydrated Primal. She loves it.

Ginger “sharing” (or snatching?) Vincent’s food.

The last two days’ subcut has been easier. Not much fidgeting. I could even take a photo.

I’ve learnt that Vincent simply doesn’t like the subcut done on his left side. I don’t know why, though. The other day I did it on the left (I’m told to alternate the sides each day), and he fidgeted until he flipped over onto his right and of course, the needle came off and I could to repeat the process.

So, now I do it only on the left but I try to poke into a “different” spot each day.

Yesterday, he slept during the subcut!

Thank goodness I am able to do the subcut all by myself. Hydration is crucial for a CKD patient. Imagine if I could not do it myself – how terrible would that be? And Vincent needs it daily. There is no question about that. It cannot be skipped.

This morning’s breakfast.

Vincent is still choosy over his food. Every meal MUST start with Cindy’s Tender Chicken. After that, I can add on other foods. But it must start with Cindy’s chicken or else he will just play the staring game. He won’t eat. And if I don’t quickly give him what he wants, he will walk off.

Yes, I’m a slave.

But a willing one at that!

The protein leakage is bad. So, I think that is why Vincent has to eat so often (sometimes it can be even up to nine times a day, if I am at home). He asks for food when I’m around. The other day when I was out for 7 hours for the attempted dog rescue, Vincent didn’t even ask for food. He only came down when everyone else had their meal. But when I’m at home, he constantly asks for food.

I know Vincent is doing his best to stay alive by constantly eating to compensate for the massive protein loss. So as much as he eats, he will still be thin. But at least he is eating and not emaciated (not yet). I dread the day when the protein loss increases to a level when no amount of eating can compensate for the loss. Or the day when no amount of hydration can compensate for the fluid loss.

Sigh…but let’s not go there today.

I use colour-coding to identify which food is stored where. Purple is the rehydrated Primal Turkey, blue is the rehydrated Primal Chicken & Salmon. Green is Cindy’s tuna flavours. Pink is the must-have Cindy’s Tender Chicken. I still try to sneak in some probiotics and wheatgrass whenever possible. Some days, Vincent will walk away when he detects the “lacing”. Some days, he doesn’t mind.

Since he is no longer on Azodyl, the probiotics is important although it doesn’t quite do the job of remaining intact until it reaches the intestines (which Azodyl does, hence, it is encapsulated and will only dissolve when the environment is alkaline). But remember Vincent used to vomit out the flat capsule, so I wonder if it even works for him…. Based on the blood test results – no, Azodyl wasn’t working. That is why the vet increased it to two caps per day, but Vincent hates it with a vengeance, so we decided not to push.

“Respect your cat”, says Dr Pierson and Dr Becker.

Ginger wants everything and anything that Vincent eats!

Last night’s left-overs – all finished this morning.

Have a great day, everyone!

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