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FHO Surgery: Femoral Head Ostectomy for cats (both legs)

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Before Surgery

February 15th 2013 7:59 am
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Why she needed it

After going through Chloe’s big ordeal, I thought I might be over paranoid when I took Fiona to the vet. I noticed that when I was holding her, she was sensitive around her hips. She tipped over while sitting on my chest and then when I picked her up to hold her again, she became vocal and left. I thought that I would rather be paranoid and wrong about Fiona concerning whether I should go to the vet, rather than be wrong and not doing anything about it. My vet checked her out, and we found she was having pain and discomfort. (*the most important thing to learn the difference in sound she makes when she is annoyed, and the sound she makes if she is uncomfortable). She got her x-rays, sent them to a radiologist. Surprise! Like her sister, she has a fractured hip (left) and the growth plate is sliding. However, I didn’t know that her right hip was bad as well. Later on, the surgeon told me it was “just falling apart”. Good grief! Poor kitty! (So) She is having her surgery February 20th.

Signs your kitty has trouble:
-favoring one leg over the other
-trouble jumping
-using upper body rather whole body
-laying on one side a lot
-sensitivity to hips
-kitty wouldn’t sit up, or loaf
-Fiona had trouble getting up from laying on her side and would vocalize pain as she got up


I will miss your hairy butt

February 18th 2013 4:04 pm
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Fiona has the most beautiful long/soft fur. Every time I look at her I wonder how much they will have to shave off of her for the surgery. It will grow back over time, but it will be interesting.


Surgery Today

February 20th 2013 7:11 am
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It was hard taking her to the vet. We have a really great vet, and Fiona is well behaved, but she gets scared. I adopted Fiona and Chloe when they were two months old. We have been through so much. When Chloe had to go to surgery all day, I felt like my left hand was gone. Now that Fiona is in surgery, I feel like my right hand is gone. I know they are not gone for good, but they have been with me for 18 months, and I have a big attachment to them both.

It will be rough, but we will get through it.


Oh Fee

February 20th 2013 9:49 pm
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I think the hardest thing after a cat has surgery is coming out of anesthesia. She's freaking out because she has no concept of time, the bottom half of her body is shaved, and she is hurting.

The past 3-4 hours have been really rough. She couldn't move her hips and prop herself up, so most of the time she was screaming like a banshee, growling because she was frustrated, and sliding in circles around the room. My mom and tag teamed to calm her down.

She is the alpha kitty--she doesn't like help. I tried to put a thin fleece blanket over her so she wouldn't get cold, but it offended her feline sensibility. We have learned to make her comfortable by putting her on this bed cushion (for kitties by martha stewart via petsmart), and lay her a couple feet away from the fireplace (her favorite place). She did make a lap around the room last night, putting weight on her feet for 3 seconds and then rested. She is doing much better. I bought these measuring cups a long time ago for kitty food purposes, and have been giving her food and water every now and then. When she starts walking around a little better, I will let her go to her regular feeding area.

I am so very tired. And it is hard watching one cat go through a surgery, but two cats going through surgery within a week is hard. I am currently unemployed and (somewhat) lucky to be home to take care of my girls.



February 21st 2013 9:42 pm
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I didn't really get to sleep until 4-7 this morning. After a couple hours of thrashing, growling, spinning and hissing, she walked around the dining table and went to the litter box. She was so tired, that I had to pull her out (by the scruff). I used an electric blanket for Chloe, and it seemed to keep her comfortable, so I used it for Fiona. She is comfortable on it, and I get the chance to clean her up a little. I use those earth wipes and then brush her. I have had cats before (for 19 years--since I was 8). I know that as long as you are slow, they can see your hands, you look them in the eye and tell them what you are doing they won't freak out (the tone calms them). She lets me touch her hind feet and tail when I clean her, but will scream like a banshee if I touch her feet with my finger. I don't know if she will even let me take her to the vet on Monday to take off the Fetinol patch. I am going to ask if I can do it myself, and wait until she can get her stitches off (2 weeks) before we make another vet trip.
She loves head rubs, and even played with me a little. Chloe was easier to take care of, but I am getting through it. I am so grateful the weekend is coming up. My mom will take "watch" for a couple hours so I can sleep.


sleep is for sissies

February 22nd 2013 9:06 am
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I called the vet to get some advice about pain medication. We were up all night. She is so sensitive and erratic that if I touch a blanket near her tail end, she has a fit. She is a good girl and doesn't bite, but it is alarming and stressful. I have feliway plugs just about everywhere, but she is in pain. She hasn't gotten the hang of moving around yet. She squirms. I tried making a path of food for her to follow, but she ends up in the wrong direction.

I guess I am having a hard time trying to figure out where to draw the line. Since it is only the second day after her surgery, I don't mind carrying her around right now, but then I have to figure out when to stop.



February 22nd 2013 11:12 pm
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There doesn't seem to be any relief for her. I am taking her to the vet to see if this is 'part of the healing process' (which I don't think so), or if there is something we need to address. I would rather be sure of what is going on. It makes me sad to hear her cry. Even though Chloe only had one leg done, she was never in this much pain.


Progress Report

February 23rd 2013 6:17 pm
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I decided that I needed to get Fiona moving. The sooner that Chloe moved, the better she got. I pretty much picked Fiona up and supported her belly and walked her a several times today. She walked more and more every 'session'. The best moment by far was when she used the litter box.


one foot after the other...and a little whining.

February 24th 2013 3:16 am
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Fiona is walking really well....except when she walks farther away from me than she'd like, and she starts calling me, crying. since it's the fourth day, I am trying to be strong and make her come to me instead of 'rescuing her' (unless she is REALLY cornered). I need her to walk because she still has a bit of liquid in her lungs (we don't want her to get sick). The more she moves, the quicker she gets better. If not, I will have to take her to the vet.


Sometimes I speak to Soon

February 24th 2013 3:56 pm
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I thought that moving Fiona around would help clear the fluid in her lungs. Nope. She feels worse today. She also is a stressed kitty that likes to lick herself sore, so I had to put the cone on. She fought me all night. I feel so bad for her. I am just trying to keep her comfortable until I can get her to the vet tomorrow (vet closed today because it is Sunday).

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