Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Posy Under the Knife

After four or so years of hemming and hawing, Ms. Posy Fern had dental surgery on Friday.  I’ve long been conflicted about pet dentistry.  My pug, Tulip, did not have the best of teeth, and I did have her teeth cleaned about four or five times in the second half of her life.  Anesthesia is always an extra risk with pets who are brachycephalic—i.e. smushed face animals – though, and over the years pet dentistry seems to have “evolved” from a set-price procedure to a major financial investment.  Leaving aside the fact that we can’t afford it, I have some ethical issues over paying more for my pets’ dentistry than I can afford for my own.

So even though vets have been telling me for the past four years that both my cats had terrible teeth and gum issues, I’d been stalling doing anything about it.  Recently, our new vet – whom I like very much and is a no-nonsense kind of doctor – told us that Posy’s mouth issues were so bad that she was definitely in a lot of pain.  Left untreated, we’d be compromising her quality of life, as well as paving the way for eventual blood poisoning.  She told us both cats needed the procedure, but Posy much more so than Plum.  We finally signed Posy up for surgery and Sean brought her in on Friday, empty-bellied, and somewhat subdued to be taken on this unusual father/daughter adventure.

Once she was under anesthesia and x-rays had been taken, the vet called me to tell me what she planned to do and to get my permission.  Basically, Posy had her “cheek teeth” removed (most were in various states of resorption, a common problem for brachycephalic pets), and then major gum repair done in the places where she had stalagmites but no stalactites, so to speak:  teeth going up or teeth going down with no mirror image above, thus leading to gum carnage with every bite the poor gal made.

The good news is that everything went very well, and the other good news is that it ended up being significantly less expensive than the initial quote.  Posy came home loopy on pain meds, and spent her first thirty-six hours in our guest room suite, where she could be sure to not be bothered by Plum or Dorothy.  Of course, being Posy and being feisty, she spent her second night yowling behind the closed door demanding her freedom.  She purred from the moment she got home though, and ate immediately too—both good signs.  She has yet to clean herself, so I know that she is feeling some mouth pain still, but hopefully she’ll re-start her cleaning OCD in the next day or so.

I was pretty sure she was feeling much better in the wee small hours of the night last night, when I was awakened by Posy playing a mean game of paw hockey with a balled-up candy wrapper all over my bedroom floor.  Thanks, Posy!

Here is Posy Saturday morning, still enjoying the hallucinatory effects of her pain meds:

This is the dawning of the age of Aquarius!....


Martha said...

I'm glad little P. Fiddy is doing better - I forgot to check in about her progress over the weekend. Mean Auntie!

DanC said...

Glad your babies are doing better. A good vet has little to almost no problems with anaesthesia. We have had problems, with one vet we use, and will never let them put one of our kitties under again...