Friday, September 14, 2007

Black and White

All my surgery patients were black and white, today. Mostly kitties, and one border collie. Two of the kitties were mine. Time for the snip-snip and the clip-clip.

It's always a little scary working on your own pets. A neuter is no big deal, but a spay is an ovariohysterectomy, a big surgery with an open abdomen. These procedures, fortunately, went fine. As long as I didn't think about it being my personal cat, I was a calm, efficient surgeon.

I also did declaw both kittens. I realize this is controversial. In fact, in England it's banned. The vets I worked with there as a student thought it was horrible, and they could lose their liscense doing it.

The very first vet I worked with did declaws in a very cruel manner, and I swore I would never do it myself. However, after learning the proper technique (not that barbaric one) and with the benefits of multimodal anesthesia, I do not hesitate. My cats will never go outdoors, and my couch is made of leather.

At my clinic, the cats getting a declaw get an oral dose of anti-inflammatory pain reliever, and a morphine injection before we even start. The morphine blocks the pain receptors before they are even stimulated; the NSAID does likewise and prevents postop swelling. Before I cut, I block the cat's innervation to the paws with long-acting nerve blocks, again before pain receptors are engaged. These injections last far longer than your dentist's nerve blocks. Then we also place a fentanyl patch on the cat, which transdermally delivers opiods to the cat for the next 72 hours. After we're done, we give another morphine shot.

The cats are pretty blissful postoperatively.

My sweet, spoiled kitties also did manage to follow the rule about employee pets - the one that says they are always the ones to have special problems. They develop cardiac arrhythmias, or buck anesthesia, or have a bleeder you have to go back and get, etc. My kitties, both of them, decided to pull the bandages off their paws after recovery.

The answer to that is a kitty straight jacket! (works a lot like bundling an infant)



Sorry for the crappy cell phone picture. That's Kareen holding Fratello.

8 comments:

ColeBugsmommy said...

That darn cat won every round today!!!!

mr man said...

He is giant. Guess they (maybe sister is as big) had a growth spurt since we left. He looks bigger than bono.

Saw a dog at the CO vet today that was 18 mos old, weighed 90 lbs and was taller than sugarbear: at the shoulder. It was white and had curly hair like a poodle, but not one; little girl was sorta freekt so i didn't have the chance to ask what he was....

EdamameMommy said...

lololol again great posting! Yeah!

ita frat boy is big.

Library Lady said...

He IS big. Or is it just that he's stretched out in that jacket?

Our boy Bart really is that big--I am overdue to take him to the vet to discuss his diet And he is not declawed, but I know that my dining room/kitchen table wishes that he was!

Jennifer said...

Well, he's not really that big. Just 7 lbs. He is wrapped in a really big, fluffy towel and strapped down with a lot of bandaging material.

Sorella is only 5 lbs. They have both been happily stoned all weekend.

Emily said...

Glad to hear it went well. Sounds like your anethesia plan was very thorough!

Michelle said...

Kittie swaddling!

Leah said...

kitties in a blanket....