Dear Diary

So sorry for the lack of posts over the past several days. It’s been a little crazy here. I’ll try to play catch up today with a little diary-type entry of what’s been going on. Ok, that’s a lie. It’s not little. It’s really lengthy actually. You’ve been warned.

On Saturday I went to get my hair done for my bi-yearly appointment (I wish I was kidding. I’m pretty lazy.) I asked for a little lighter brown for the summertime and was excited about an update. Especially since it has been literally 5 months since I’ve had it done. A fact which my stylist likes to tease me about throughout every appointment.

The whole time I was there we chatted about how the new trend seems to be having dark roots showing. I must be behind the trend. My hairdresser told me that she’s had several clients requesting highlights that purposely look like they are grown out. I said “that’s crazy!” and “I can’t imagining spending over $100 to look like I went to the salon two months ago!” and we laughed about it. Somehow she took that to mean that I wanted that done. :/ Also somehow my lighter-brown hair request turned out looking like this:
So now I have brassy red hair with dark roots and am squeezing in another two hours tonight to get this fixed. Not that I don’t enjoy being a redhead (mostly just so I can do this), but it’s really not a look I’m loving.

So after my appointment Saturday morning, we had a wedding to go to Saturday night. (Yes I went as a redhead.) It was Vera’s first wedding so we were excited to get her dressed up and dance with her. It was a fun time but a full day! I had a friend snap this iPhone photo for us before we left at the end of the night. (Luckily the Instagram filter masks the true color of my hair.)
Now comes the part that I’ve really been stressing over all week. I didn’t want to try to write about this until I knew how things were going to turn out, which is the real reason for the delay in posting for a few days. We’ve had a bit of a family emergency here, centered around our family pet, Lucious.

Sunday I spent the morning cleaning. We have some friends coming to stay with us next weekend, so that means scrubbing the guest bathroom, washing sheets and other general cleanup. I was rolling along and it was looking like a relaxing evening of TV and blogging was in my future when I started to become concerned about my son/cat, Lucious.

He is a well-behaved cat and has always used his litter box with no issues. That is until about 3 weeks ago when he inexplicably started peeing in the house. I chalked it up to anxiety over fireworks at the time but it didn’t stop when the fireworks stopped. Then we thought maybe it was because we recently changed his brand of litter. But that didn’t help either. So on Sunday when I noticed that he was squatting in our dining room, I went to grab him and take him to his box, but there was nothing there. As in no pee. And when I cleaned his box I noticed there was no urine in there either. Like none at all. I watched him for a few more hours as he progressively got worse. He was squatting everywhere but nothing came out. Then he would limp a few steps and sit to lick himself, doing this over and over. He was also very lethargic and didn’t seem to have nearly as much energy as usual. By this point I knew something was seriously wrong. I called the vet, but being that it was Sunday night, they were closed and I was transferred to the ER.

So at 7:00 Sunday night we drove Lucious to the emergency 24 hour vet where he was diagnosed with a blockage most likely caused by kidney stones. They needed to put in a catheter to drain his bladder before it burst, which would have been fatal. That would also involve sedating him and giving him antibiotics and pain medication. We were handed an estimate for almost $900. This of course was after the $90 fee just to be seen in the first place. After we picked our jaws up off the floor, we tried to figure out a plan for getting Lu out of immediate danger, while finding some way to be able to afford this very sudden and unexpected expense.

After some talking with the doctor, we decided to do the catheter to drain his bladder and hopefully flush out the stones and take him home that night (instead of leaving him there with the catheter in for three days to be more sure the stones could pass). Then if that didn’t fix the issue, we could take him to the regular vet the next morning where he could be seen for hopefully a little less money.

The next morning, when there was still no urine in his litter box, we took him into the vet’s office, where we were again handed an outrageous estimate. This time it was for nearly $750, and this is on top of the $400 we had spent the previous night in the ER. They also told us that this estimate was only for what they needed to do right now. If this didn’t work, they would have to perform surgery to remove the stones, which would be considerably more.

At this point, I was bawling. Brett and I were talking about all angles and possibilities. It seemed like the options we had been presented with were to either max out our credit cards spending thousands of dollars to save our pet, or make the decision to put him down because we couldn’t afford to help him and didn’t want him to suffer. I was a mess. And did I mention I was at work trying to deal with all this over the phone? Finally at noon that day, Brett called me and asked if I could come home to help him deal with the decisions he was having to make on his own. And this is where the story gets better.. I promise! But first I need to take a minute to thank my awesome sister-in-law, Josie. She is a huge animal lover and I have a feeling that despite our final (so far?) total of $955, she’s had a hand in convincing her brother that Lu was worth saving.

So back to the story. When I went to tell my boss that I needed to leave work and explained the situation, he recommended that we try his family vet and gave me the number. So we called and they are amazing!! The vet we saw was disappointed in how Lu had been treated up until then, saying that those clinics give veterinarians a bad name. Then he said (I love this) “It’s time to quit dicking around and get this taken care of.” and that’s what they’ve done. They took Lu in and have kept him there for three days now, treating him like he was their own. Their biggest concern is making sure he is ok, and they want to make sure we can afford to help him.

So far we have paid an additional $320 for their services, but that seems like nothing compared to the earlier estimates.

Yesterday afternoon Brett picked Lu up and brought him home. I was excited to get home to see him but as I was driving home after work, I got a call saying he was taking him back after watching him squat several more times with no results if you will.

They redid the catheter and fluids to flush out the stones and called back again this morning to say we could pick him up again, and that there would be no additional charge! I’m excited to have my cat-baby back for the first time in 3 days and I am really hoping that this last procedure and the new diet he is on will fix the issues he’s been having.
So far he’s been acting happy and healthy since he’s been home. Here’s hoping that lasts and we can all get back to our normal routine. Sheesh!



  • Allison Maroun

    I’m so sorry to hear about your kitty — we faced the exact same situation with our kitty and I instantly related to your story. You are doing the right thing with exercise and diet. Water intake is the most important, hopefully he likes wet food? That’s the best way to get more moisture in the diet.

    Anyways, I just had to comment, having been there (twice sadly). Hang in there and you are a great cat mama!

    • Dawn Sailors

      Thank you! I really appreciate that. I’m sorry to hear you had to go through it twice. I can’t imagine! We’re not quite out of the woods yet, but he’s on a special diet from the vet that’s supposed to dissolve the build up, and he’s doing better so hopefully he won’t relapse. Thanks again for the kind words. Good to know we’re not the only ones!


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