One of my cats – I’ll call him ‘C’ to protect his privacy – recently had to have a tooth removed. This isn’t exactly a fun event for a cat. Or for the cat owner, especially when the bill is presented. But ‘C’ is not unhappy at the moment; because ‘C’ is on pain meds and I suspect is tripping balls.
I noticed when I was bringing him home from the vet that instead of his usual in-car behavior – piercing screams and desperate efforts to get out of his carrier – he was calm and quiet. Thank goodness. Probably because the vet had given him a dose of pain medication shortly before I picked him up. At home he seemed content to either wander aimlessly and somewhat unsteadily about the house or – whenever I was close – flop over on his back for a belly / muzzle rub.
I thought at first he was just begging for food in an unusual way, since he hadn’t had anything to eat all day due to the surgery. But even after I fed him (soft food, of course), he remained an overly affectionate and rather oddly behaving kitty. His brother and co-conspirator – who, to continue to protect the innocent, we will call ‘P’ – seemed puzzled by such goofiness and sniffed his butt frequently to make sure this WAS ‘C’.
The only change in attitude came when it was time to give ‘C’ the next dose of pain medication, squirting a small amount of it into his mouth between cheek and gum. Unfortunately newly detoothed ‘C’ had NO wish to have anyone do anything with his mouth right then, and got a bit fractious. But things were resolved with only a minor amount of my blood shed and at least some of the medicine in his mouth.
After which we went to bed. Or at least I went to bed, he spent much of the night wandering around making odd vocalizations and pawing at things. Like me. It was not hard to imagine him going “Oh wow oh wow oh wow, am I high!” After an hour of this I got up, picked up both cats, and threw them out of the room, closing the door behind them. They both started scratching at the door to be let back in, but I ignored them and managed to get SOME sleep.
Since then he has continued being weird. He seems newly fascinated by the stairs in my house, staring up if he’s at the bottom or down if he’s at the top. I suspect, in his doped up state, it looks as if they’re moving like an escalator and he’s not sure what to make of it.
Whenever I use the stairs though, he overcomes any misgivings and often tries to get to a step ahead of me and roll over on his back again, apparently convinced I’ll have to pet him to get by. And in his current state, sometimes he rolls the wrong way and falls completely off the step he’s on down to the next one. I just sigh and keep him from rolling all the way down the stairs like a rag doll.
He’s gotten a bit steadier on his feet as time goes on, but he’s not jumping up on counters, beds, and tables as he did before surgery. The room may be spinning around for him. He’s also lost interest in what used to be a favorite past-time, staring out the window at a bird feeder nearby and making ‘chi-chi-chi’ sounds at the morsels outside. His brother continues watching the birdies with rapt attention, and some times gets so caught up that he hurls himself at the window in a pounce. Fortunately the glass is thick, and all that results is a “WHAM”. ‘C’ however has turned away from such pursuits – literally – as if to proclaim “Can’t we all just get along? All I am saying is, give peace a CHANCE!”
Then he rolls over on his back and tries to get another rub, paws in the air. He is so feeling no pain.
I’m to keep giving him pain medication for a week. Doing so is getting easier, but it still kills his buzz so he’s not happy when I bring out the squirter, and tends to try to get away. Of course afterwards, if I succeed in getting the dose in him, he has no choice but to be happy, and his feet barely touch the ground as he walks. Assuming no infection sets in, he should be back to his normal, ‘engine of destruction’ self soon.
Meantime I keep looking at the vet bill. And wishing *I* had some pain meds.