The Sweet Smell of … Cat Poop?

No. It is not sweet. There is nothing ‘sweet’ about it. But, when your 2-year-old cat has had major surgery… well that smell made me feel a whole lot better today.

Let me tell you the story of Ivy. A cute and fuzzy kitten we found in our garage back in May 2017. We have no idea how she came to be in our garage and she hadn’t been there long, maybe a day or so, but we were happy to have found her. We saved her life. With coyotes, wolves, foxes, fishers, and any other predators who think a kitten would make a nice snack, living around our house—yeah, we saved her.

It wasn’t long before Ivy captured all of our hearts. Our dog, Bailey’s maternal instincts turned out to be stronger than her prey drive and she “mothered” and played with the little kitten.

The only one in the family that took a little bit of time to warm up to the new addition was Sophie, our other grey cat.

But soon they all became great friends.

Being a stray, I hadn’t quite decided if Ivy would be an indoor cat or indoor/outdoor. I was worried about her being outside. But a year later that decision was made for me.

In early June 2018, Ivy began drooling—a lot. I called the vet on-call (it was after hours) and he told me she may just be nauseous. That night her drooling increased. She was not well. The next morning I made the decision to take her to our vet. So I packed her up and off we went.

After some blood work it was determined that Ivy had injested something poisoneous (to this day we have no idea what). She would have to stay overnight on an IV to flush it out of her system. She was much better the next day but had to take a liver support supplement for about two weeks after. I decided then that she would remain indoors. If she could get into that much trouble inside, she’d never survive outside.

Flash forward to end of May this year. Ivy wasn’t “hoovering” her food like she normally does and only eating about half of it. She also didn’t seem to be pooping as much (I know because our other cat, Sophie, is an indoor/outdoor cat and goes outside mostly.) Anyway, at around the same time I had found what was left of a leather cord (the type for jewelery). I was suspiscious as Ivy does have a penchant for eating things that are not food.

Then a few days later, she vomitted, and refused her food. I knew this couldn’t mean anything good. On June 3, Ivy went to the vet and after some x-rays it was found that she had a blockage in her stomach, and she required surgery.

The blockage turned out to be a massive hairball, all twisted and intertwined with food.

Ivy came home the following day with a 4″ incision, a cone, antibiotics, pain meds, and instructions that if she didn’t poop or pee within the next 24 hours I was to let the vet know. Well she peed within an hour of coming home, but the other… nope wasn’t happening. I began to worry.

On Wednesday I called the vet to let her know what was happening. She said that if she didn’t go by Friday, I could bring her in and they would take x-rays to see what was going on. Of course my over-active imagination led to many horrible things each with a terrible outcome.

This morning, I called the vet on my way to work and made her appointment for 2:00. Luckily, I was able to take the afternoon off as a holiday and at 11:30 left for the 50 minute drive home.

In the 11th hour, I walked into the room where Ivy was convalescing. She looked up at me with her big green eyes, and they seemed much happier than when I’d left her that morning. And then there was an odour. I immediatly went to the litter box. Hallelujah!!!!

She still has a ways to go before her recovery is complete as we are not even finished with the first week. But I really do think she is on the mend and for that I am grateful.

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