He slept through the night, although he was up before the alarm. He waited in the bathroom for some loves from Jackie.
Mostly, it’s hard to know what to say about the day. He’s doing great – alert, interested, good but not excessive appetite. He moves through his various beds at random, stopping in between to eat.
Because of both the viral diarrhea all three had and because the walnut litter we use because of Cory’s allergy eventually breaking down into clingy dust (like any other litter, I suppose) both litter boxes got scrubbed and refilled yesterday. Maybe that will help his environmental itchies and help prevent a re-infection.
Several times over the past week, we’ve found Cory in or leaving the bathroom, with his chin and cheeks wet, and we finally got proof that he was doing his absolute best to drink from the cup of water that’s on the bathroom sink and changed 2-3 times a day. They also have a fountain Cory doesn’t care for, but Freya adores. We dug out one that we’d stopped using because it’s so hard to keep clean and it’s aging which doesn’t help, but Cory loves it. Scrubbed it thoroughly and set it up. And… Cory’s using it! He still wants shower and syringe water, but if he’s using the fountain, it means he can at least get a quick drink if we aren’t immediately available, which is a big relief. The reason his muzzle gets so wet is because, with the missing papillae making it harder to flick-and-scoop the water and the partial paralysis making it too easy for the water to escape out the left side, he’s plunging his chin and all down into the water as deeply as he can while still breathing, and flicking it up into his throat. I can see the fountain from my computer, and I’m basically watching him work out exactly how best to do it. Despite the water being slightly below room temperature because it’s running, instead of warm the way we try to do in the bathroom, it does not seem to be causing any discomfort.
We also spotted how he’s adapting with the kibble. The bowl he’s using is shell-shaped with some shallow ridges. He’s using those to nudge the kibbles upwards so he isn’t struggling to pick them off a flat hard surface, and then tilts his head towards the right once he gets ahold of it, maybe so it doesn’t fall towards the left and possibly escape. This is an enormous improvement over pushing kibbles around in vain and occasionally managing to seize one.
We were thinking about all this. The paralysis thing set in during the first couple of days of June. This is July 19th. It’s only in the past two weeks, since we stopped the Metacam because of a bad reaction, that he has suddenly started making such a determined effort to find ways to be independent again, instead of adapting to us helping him constantly. We’re wondering now whether the Metacam was either 1) not adequate pain control, and there was still enough to make it hard for him to feel motivated or 2) the Metacam was making him feel a bit foggy and he couldn’t concentrate. Because this is a more dramatic change than I can really convey in a few words.
By the way, we gave him a full 7 kg dose of CBD oil, mixed in with his breakfast Fancy Feast syringe, and dropped his injected buprenorphine down to 6.5 units (er, we use U-100 insulin syringes, and units are easier than lots of decimals… that would be 0.065cc) for both shots, and there was no problem at all. We’ll do 6.5 again in the morning, then if all’s well we’ll drop it to 6 units for evening. We’d quite like to get the buprenorphine dose down as low as we can.
His “Grandma,” our downstairs neighbour who adores all three and catsits sometimes, paid them a visit, and got to see him wrap around the back of my neck and nuzzle-attack my ponytail elastic. I think she’s the only person other than Jackie and I to ever see that in person. Normally, he keeps stuff like that private. He just wanted to do it and didn’t seem to care that she was present.
And before I went to bed, he wanted some extremely vigourous headbonks and nuzzles right back. He was having a very affectionate evening in high spirits.