I came home from work yesterday - my last day at my (now!) old job, ready to have a relaxing evening - perhaps some wine and a movie, and then I had plans to spend time with friends tonight before diving into my new job on Monday. When I got home and opened the front door yesterday after work, I immediately knew something was wrong because Jackson didn't greet me at the door. He ALWAYS greets me at the door. I came inside to find him sitting in the doorway to my bedroom, and even when I called to him, he didn't move. I bent down to pick him up,and he cried out...not a good sign. I called my veterinarian's office, and they told me to bring him in right away so that they could take a look at him - they told me that this sounded like something that couldn't wait until the morning. Thank goodness they are open until 6pm.
I won't go into all of the gory details, but it turned out that he had a complete urinary blockage, which is a very serious condition. He wasn't able to urinate at all, and when this happens, it causes the toxins in the urine to back up into the bloodstream and kidneys, which will kill the cat if it isn't fixed quickly. After spending about an hour at my vet, they sent me down the road to the emergency vet so that they could continue to work on him and monitor him overnight. They told me that there was a possibility that he would need surgery (a very expensive one...) to fix the problem, but it would all depend on how he did overnight. I left him at the vet for the night at about 9:30pm. I barely slept a wink because I was so worried about him (and also because the vet called at 1am and again at 7am with updates, which I of course appreciated). He did really well over the night and started to *tinkle* on his own, so they said that he wouldn't need the surgery. I was able to bring him home this evening, and I'm currently camped out on the bathroom floor with my laptop and a book so I can keep an eye on him. Sweet Saturday night, huh?
I'm so relieved that he seems to be ok. There's a pretty good chance that this will happen again at some point (could be tomorrow, could be years from now), and that he will need the surgery if / when it happens again, but I feel more equipped to deal with the situation now if it arises. I had no idea what was going on yesterday, which made everything that much more scary. The nice vet tech who discharged him today told me to look around and find a vet who does the surgery so I would know where to go if he has to have it in the future, because she said it would probably be $1,000 cheaper if I got it done at a regular vet clinic as opposed to the emergency clinic. $1,000! That is crazy! I can't even go into how much I spent on this incident in the past 24 hours. Vet expenses, especially in emergency situations are outrageous. I'm seriously wishing I had opted into the pet insurance back when he was a kitten. I'm seriously considering it now, even though it probably won't cover this condition in the future, since it would be considered "pre-existing" at this point, but holy geez if anything else happens, I don't want to be hit with thousands of dollars in vet bills!
Do you have pet insurance? What are your thoughts on it if you do?
I'll leave you with a pic of my little patient. He's recovering nicely :)