Marching to the Beat of My Own Drum

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Sharing Is Caring?

April 29th 2011 3:24 pm
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My brother visits me in my room several times a day and immediately runs over to my food dish. I guess he wants to make sure the humans are taking care of me.

Last night, I squeaked/chirped at him while he inhaled, I mean ate, the last of my kitten niblets. "Um, brother...I was saving those for later. But it's okay, you can have them."

Then he licked my bowl clean for me.

 

Big Brother

May 1st 2011 8:50 am
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Oh! I am having all kinds of fun! My brother lets me clean him a little and sometimes he even cleans me! And he lets me hug him but only his bottom half. I tried to wrap my paws around his neck yesterday and he started hissing and yelled, “I’m not wearing the cape again!” What’s a cape?

He also let me play with his catnip cigar. These things are awesome!

My sister Hilda is sometimes okay with me and then other times she hisses at me. My other sister HM always hisses at me. Elvin says it’s because they’re girls and they have cooties anyway. What are cooties? My brother is teaching me all kinds of important things! I hope I grow up to be just like him!

 

Scary Stories

May 5th 2011 2:34 pm
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Yesterday morning my brother called me over to his side. "Come here, kid. You've been here long enough now. It's time to tell you about an evil monster known only as the Caped Menace. The Caped Menace likes to sneak up on little kittens who are left alone. When it finds a kitten, the Caped Menace jumps on its back, riding it like a donkey while also biting its neck."

This sounded pretty scary. "How do I know if the Caped Monster is near?"

Elvin looked around to make sure we were alone and whispered, "Sometimes if you’re lucky, you might feel a paw on your back before the Caped Menace jumps on you. If you ever feel that paw, run as fast as your stumpy little leg will allow and HIDE!"

Later in the afternoon, while I was sitting next to Hetty Miep, I felt a paw on my back. I might have screamed a little as I ran back to my special hiding room.

I heard Hetty Miep laughing as I ran down the hall. I don’t think that was very nice of her. She won't be laughing if the Caped Menace finds her!

But happy news: I am a Catster Diary of the Day! Thank you for all of the wonderful rosettes! My siblings are very jealous. I told my brother I would share them with him since he’s always so nice to me.

 

Tripod Future

July 7th 2011 6:22 pm
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Today was lots of fun! This morning I snuggled with my female human, and in the afternoon I practiced for the rodeo by riding on my brother’s back while he ran up and down the hall as fast as he could. I never let go—it was great! Then, I wrestled with Hetty Miep. She had so much fun that she was hissing and growling while we wrestled. Then my sister Hilda let me clean her forehead. I forgot to wrestle with her afterward, though. I hope she didn’t mind.

Then we went to visit Uncle Dr. Kraft. They love me there! They love me so much that I’m going back on Monday morning. Uncle Dr. Kraft says I will be a tripod after that.

What’s a tripod?

 

Surgery Plan

July 11th 2011 8:51 am
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Written by Artie’s female human:

Uncle Dr. Kraft (UDK) just called. He is getting ready to operate on Artie but after observing Artie’s crazy activity level, he as changed his original plan of a forequarter removal (leg and shoulder). He said that really active cats have the tendency to bump the brachial plexus, which is full of nerves and lacks protection after a forequarter removal. This can cause quite a bit of pain. So, he has decided to remove the leg up to the area between the shoulder and elbow, which will leave a small stump. Up until UDK’s call, I’d been expecting a full removal, so I haven’t researched the pros and cons vs. full or partial removal. I did ask UDK if there are any disadvantages to leaving a small stump and he said there wouldn’t be. I hope, hope, hope he is right and the stump won’t have any problems. I am worried, though.

Last night, my brain was definitely in overactive mode. I started worrying: what if they lose electricity during the surgery? What if UDK cuts off the wrong leg? And the usual success/adjustment worries.

Thank you all for your kind words of encouragement, the rosettes, and purrs!

 

Surgery Update

July 11th 2011 12:08 pm
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Written by Artie’s female human:

Artie is out of surgery. They said the surgery went well and he is on a pain drip now. He should be able to come home tomorrow but will have to wear the dreaded cone of shame and be confined to a crate for awhile.

 

Surgery Update II

July 11th 2011 3:33 pm
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Written by Artie’s female human:

Artie is awake, and the vet tech said he is making biscuits with his one paw (she said it might be the drugs). He is our sweet boy. We're picking him up tomorrow at 9 am.

Tonight we're setting up the crate and will try to make it as cozy as possible with lots of fluffy blankets, his favorite ratty old green towel (clean!), and the stuffed sardine that Artie likes to alternately attack and snug (when he sleeps).

The last time we had to set up the crate was when Garp had an abscess on his bottom. Sad times.

 

Home!

July 12th 2011 2:13 pm
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It sure feels good to be home again, even if I am stuck in a cage. Every time my humans visit me, I purr up a storm. The good news is that I don’t have to wear the dreaded cone of shame. The bad news is I have to wear the cape of despair instead. My female human read about that people have successfully used t-shirts for newborn babies instead of the cone/cape. She asked Uncle Dr. Kraft (UDK) if it was okay to use these, and he said she could. So she plans on trying those out later.

UDK told my humans that I am a good boy, but I was very squirmy last night and was pulling out my catheter every 45 minutes. UDK was at work until 8:30 pm last night before I finally crashed. When my humans picked me up today, I was asleep with my face resting on my food bowl. I love my food! When my humans visited me at the shelter (before adopting me), they found me lounging with my arm on the food bowl there too!

I can’t move around in the crate too much but am managing to walk on the three legs I have left. UDK told my humans that I used the litter box and walked around the cage at his clinic (which is smaller than the one I have at home).

Thank you all for the rosettes, wonderful pawmails, friend requests, and purring for me. It’s wonderful to have so much support!

Note from Artie’s female human:

So far it doesn’t appear that Artie is in pain. I was briefly worried after he ate his lunch and drank some water. His back started twitching several times. I’m hoping it wasn’t a pain twitch. Artie tends to eat too fast and he drank some water right after that, so he might have had hiccups or something similar. He fell asleep on his stuffed rat a few minutes after that. We have pain meds for him, though, and have been authorized to up them from 2x/day to 3x/day if needed.

 

Comfie PJs!

July 12th 2011 4:50 pm
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My female human bought a pack of onesies for newborns at Target. She cut off the bottom part, and tried it on my brother Elvin first. Surprisingly, he didn’t mind! But she declared that he was a little too plus-size to fit the shirt. Luckily, it fit better on me. The larger size (0-3 months) might have worked better for the armhole, which sits slightly high for me; but the neck on the 0-3 months would probably be too loose (which would allow me to lick my stitches).

After the initial fitting, my female human cut off the sleeve that my arm slips into (so that side is tank top style), which solved the high armhole problem. Then she sewed up the sleeve that covers my amputation site (so I can’t get to the stitches, darn it!). If this works out, my humans will let me wear my t-shirts during the day/evening (since one of my humans works from home and is able to check in on me throughout the day). I’ll only have to wear the stupid cape while they sleep.

 

Day 4 Post-Amputation

July 15th 2011 9:26 am
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My humans can’t believe that I had my arm amputated on Monday. Several times a day, my humans supervise me while I'm out of my recovery condo (~5-10 minutes each time). The first couple of days, I was a bit wobbly on my feet. Today my male human says he thinks I’m walking better on my three legs than I did when I had my bad arm. My walk is different: before the amputation, I used my bad arm as a sweeper and would have to hunch both of my shoulders over when I walked. My female human said I looked like a mole. Now I look like a bunny hopping when I walk. When I see food, though, I run right over to it. I love my food!

Last night, my female human sewed the necks on my jammie tops a bit smaller. I’m feeling so good, that I like to roll around like a little sausage when I see my humans. I also have to keep Rattie in line by wrestling with him. All this action stretches out my jammie tops enough that part of my amputation site was sticking through. Since my female human fixed the jammie tops, though, they’ve been a perfect fit and I’m a happy boy as always. I get kitty milkshakes (note from Artie’s female human: this would his oral pain meds in pre-measured syringes). And once a day, I get an extra special treat (note from Artie’s female human: this would be his antibiotics in a pill pocket). I love my special treat—yum yum!!

Today, when my brother was visiting me, he let me cape him. I’ve still got it!

 
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Family Pets

Garp
(1994-2010)
Hilda
Elvin
(2000-2013)
Hetty Miep
Wainthropp
Sally Lockhart
Jack
DeJohnette

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