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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Vet visits, or how to empty your wallet

My cats have been, for most of their 6, almost 7 years of life, pretty healthy, requiring only an annual visit to the vet for shots and such.

When we lived on Roosevelt island, getting the cats to a vet was nearly impossible. I lived in fear of them needing immediate care. Sure, we could have gotten a cab, but my cats howl like they're being murdered when they're in a car. I will admit that though I did get them an annual visit the first year we lived there (by driving them out to Great Neck on Long Island because I knew how to get there and could visit with my MIL while waiting for Thor to get his fur cut), I did not get them a visit the second year because we were going to move a few months after they were due.

One of the things I was so excited about when we moved to the west side, was the vet's office on the same block. Yay! Of course, the location comes with a price. A hefty price. I took the boys in for their annual shots the weekend we moved in. This was something like $250 a cat. I have an invoice and I'm still not sure what the heck I paid for. While we were there, I asked about an eye thing that Thor had, which turned out to be nothing and went away on its own. The blood work he did to make sure the eye thing was no big deal? Well, that came back low grade diabetes on account of blood sugar levels.

Since we'd just moved, and Thor was frankly a nervous wreck, we scheduled a second round of blood tests to see if he settled in and the high sugar results was from stress. This follow up visit? Something like $350.

When that test came back with the same low grade diabetes results, we started giving the cats a low-carb food (which makes them leave some serious stinkies in our small apartment). Though Thor managed to lose almost 3 lbs, bringing him to a respectable 16lbs, the follow up we had last weekend ($350) showed no change.

So now we get to learn how to do whatever we have to do for a diabetic cat. In the mean time, I need to figure out if this is going to require more visits to the vet (other than the one where he shows us what to do). If it does I'll be finding a new vet ASAP. I like this guy, he's patient and explains everything (most vets I've brought the boys to didn't really explain what was what). But at $250-$350 a visit- it's not feasible.
This is an old picture of Thor, back when we had a yard. It's my all time favorite picture of him. It is also the only time he was outside the house (with the exception of when they were tiny kittens and I put them in the grass to see how they liked it, but they hated it so we didn't do that again). So we let them on the patio. And Thor hated it. He was the first to run back in the house (you can see he's looking at the door in this picture, waiting for us to open it). My cats are not happy outside (which is just fine with me since they don't get the chance to go outside any how).


This is a picture I took with my new Macro lense. I'm still learning how to use it with the right settings on the G9. See how choppy his wiskers are? For some reason, he lets his brother chew on his whiskers.

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