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mom2kaia November 24th, 2003 07:23 PM

Help.....and I need some advice to calm me down...
I have always been a cat owner. In fact, my husband and I have 3 male cats, all neutered, healthy and indoor. Last year when we found out we couldn't have children we decided to get a kitten. Needless to say, given the circumstances surrounding her arrival I am terribly attached to her.

We have recently decided to have her spayed. I know, it should have been done sooner but what counts is that we are doing it. I am so terrified of leaving her alone. She has never been by herself and I can't stand the thought of leaving her at the vet by herself. Not only that but I have started having nightmares (please don't make fun of me :) ) about terrible things going wrong during her procedure. I know, she's just a cat.

My main question is though (questioning my sanity aside) how do I know what vet to trust? I have called three vets here in Burlington and got varying stories (makes me wonder if they really do just take us for a financial ride) from what tests need to be done beforehand to the time frame between the shots (she is due for vaccinations) and the surgery.

I'd appreciate any advice from the experts. Do we have to wait 2 weeks in between shots and surgery? Do they have to have blood tests to make sure they are "healthy" prior to surgery? What about when the vet doesn't mention that?

Sorry if this post makes no sense but if anyone can help I'd really appreciate it!

Lucky Rescue November 24th, 2003 08:22 PM

Take a deep breath!:D

[QUOTE]I know, she's just a cat[/QUOTE]
No need to say that around here! We know our pets are loved members of our families. I just wish more people felt the way you do!

Can you not take her to the vet who neutered your males? As for pre-surgery blood tests - that's up you, but I have never had it done on young and healthy cats. I DO have it done for seniors. Maybe I've just been lucky...

Was your kitten a stray? Born outside? In that case, I would say she needs at least a checkup and maybe blood test for things like FeLV and FIV.

I also do not vaccinate indoor cats,and never have but again, that is your choice. Has this cat ever had an vet check? Tests for worms, etc? I'm sure you are being given the correct information as to the amount of time to wait between shots and surgery.

I know that Burlington is VERY pricey as far as spays might want to call around - maybe Hamilton might be less $$.

Don't worry about leaving her - drop off in the morning and by the time the anesthetic wears off in early evening she'll be home again!:)

Carina November 24th, 2003 08:49 PM

Hi Mom!
Take another deep breath...don't forget to exhale, haha.... :D
When it's your pet & companion, it is NOT "just a cat." Of course she's important to you.

I know more about dogs than cats, and I have always done the blood panel (my vet charges $30 USD) before any surgery. - and although spaying is major surgery, it is very routine and most vets have done thousands of them. The chances of anything going wrong are extremely slight - but even slighter if you get the blood draw done first. I can't remember all they check for in regards to surgery...white blood cell count to check for underlying immune problems, blood clotting ability, stuff like that...?

I DO know that shots and surgery should never been done at the same time, if two weeks apart is the general consensus then that's probably correct. FWIW, I don't think it's necessary to give immunizations after the kitten/puppy shots either, especially for indoor cats. Most vaccines last 3-7 years as it is. Many large vet schools are now suggesting vaccinating every three years for dogs (who are at a much higher risk than indoor cats.) If she's had kitten shots, I question whether you even need to do them again.

Cost - I have found that price has NOTHING to do with how capable and caring a vet is; my personal experience. Can you talk to someone in cat rescue, a breeder, someone who has a lot of experience with local vets to get their recommendation?

Your cat (what's her name?) will NOT enjoy being at the vet, this is true. But she will get over it and won't love you any less! Besides, she'll be drugged up most of the time and will just be delighted to be back with her family...definitely try finding a vet who can do the surgery in the morning so you can bring her home at night. I hate leaving animals overnight at the vet too. Most (not all) vets will let you take an animal home if all seems well, the same day.

Don't forget to exhale. :)
And let us know how Ms Kitty's big day went!

mom2kaia November 24th, 2003 09:08 PM

Aww, thanks!!

Her name, as you can see from my name is Kaia.

We adopted her from a shelter and she had her kitten shots. We got her at 5 weeks of age. I didn't realize that cats no longer needed to be vaccinated every year. She is totally indoor as well.

If I tell a vet that I don't want her vaccinated yearly and/or don't wish to have her vaccinated at all because she is indoor can/will they refuse to spay or treat her?

Cost is not an issue, she is my baby afterall. We have been going to Dr. Dusil in Aldershot forever and I so far have found her to be very, very good. We will probably just stick with her. And she is an overnighter. :eek:

Thanks again!!

Carina November 24th, 2003 09:54 PM

Duh, I should have figured out Kaia's name... !

If a vet will only do things his/her own way (like insisting on annual vaccinations) I would find another vet. Kaia is YOUR cat, don't let anyone guilt you into doing unecessary annual vaccinations! They can refuse, if they want. You can go find another vet, if you want... :)

This vaccination thing is becoming a hot issue, with many vets resisting fewer vacs because frankly it is a regular source of income. Something like 27 major vet schools (CSU, Texas A&M) are suggesting different protocols now. There are a number of side effects to vaccinations, including a cancer in cats at the site. Not uncommon. Modern medicine is fabulous, but no need to give anything unecessary.

Anyhow, that wasn't really your main to your vet honestly; it's definitely worth having a vet you can rely on and it's a partnership relationship. If you like Dr Dusil, I'm sure you'll work it out! I adore my vet. ::waving hello to Dr Kowalski:: He's a bit leery of the diet I feed my dogs (unkibble ;) ) but is willing to work with me on stuff. He gives his blessing on fewer vaccinations, and doesn't advocate any vacs for older pets. It's a two way street, and we learn from eachother. :)

BTW, my significant other is a physician. Trust me, I KNOW these doctors aren't infallible. Hehehe.

PS: Vaccination info. In the middle of the page find stated all 27 major vet schools are changing vaccination protocols.

Lucky Rescue November 24th, 2003 10:20 PM

I"m often puzzled at vets giving animals vaccinations every year - humans have them during childhood and never again.

If your cat had kitten shots, then personally I would not give her any more. Shots can actually be dangerous for cats. Injection site sarcomas may be relatively rare, but they can happen.

I think for your healthy indoor cat, shots might not be such a good idea.

mom2kaia November 25th, 2003 09:32 PM

Just an update....

Kaia is going tomorrow for her surgery with Dr. Dusil. I looked at the procedure online (pics & video) and feel a tiny bit better but not much. :)

I pick her up on Thursday.

mona_b December 1st, 2003 09:13 PM

We adopted a kitten from the hamilton/burlington spca.They had him fixed before we could take him hom.He's 3 months.It was a day thing.I have always had cats all my life and all have been indoors.I never had to have any blood tests before they got fixed.But I must say indoor or not they should have their yearly shots no matter what.These shots are for rabies,feline lucemia and one other.What if the cat gets out and is bit by an animal?With our new kitten,he is getting his second shot this week.He got his first one 2 weeks ago.I must say I can't get over the prices here at the vet.I moved from Toronto and left my cat there with kmy dad.He has bonded with my cad and him being a senior,it's good for him.But these shots are costing me $85 when in Toronto they only cost $55.What a difference.We are seeing a vet in Hamilton.But please don't think that yearly shots are not important.Cause they are.Trust me.Please don't deny your cats them.

Carina December 2nd, 2003 04:40 AM

[QUOTE][i]Originally posted by mona_b [/i]
[B]But please don't think that yearly shots are not important.Cause they are.Trust me.Please don't deny your cats them. [/B][/QUOTE]

Mona, yearly vaccinations are [B]not[/B] important. If you go back & read any of the info & links already posted, the point is that one set of vaccinations can least years, if not the lifetime of the cat.

To reiterate: Even if a cat is an outdoor cat, it does NOT need a full set of annual vaccinations. Note that every major vet school in the United States agrees with this statement. ;)

mona_b December 2nd, 2003 10:09 AM

Ok Carina,that may be the way it is in the States,but here in Canada they have to have their yearly rabies shots and they must be licensed.And in some areas they are not allowed to roam free.If you take them out they must be on a leash.Or they will be picked up.And I put a call in to my Aunt who is a vet and she agreed they need their yearly.At least here they do.I would have taken my kitten to her but she is 3 hours away from where we live.

Carina December 2nd, 2003 04:12 PM

Well yes many counties in the US require annual shots and licencing too. But luckily more & more are realising that the "annual shots" is a complete myth and are changing.

The county I live in now only requires 3 years shots for a licence.
Some places are just slower to get it. :p

Catt31 December 5th, 2003 06:51 PM

Not all cities in Canada require licensing for cats! I live in Calgary and they aren't mandatory, although they are trying to find a solution to get the thousands of strays off the street. I lived in Lethbridge, a smaller city south of here, and they had just implemented mandatory cat licensing the month after I moved. This was about 6 years ago.... I guess some cities are slow to the task!! I personally think its a great idea....make people be more responsible pet owners!! :D

mona_b December 7th, 2003 11:43 AM

I just think something should be done.It's just so sad and breaks my heart seeing all these cats and kittens running around.Lots with no collers or id's.And a few of them dead on the road.Where I live they must be lisenced.We adopted a kitten a month ago from our spca.He was fixed and microchipped.And was also licenced.He said it was mandatory.It is a great idea.And me personaly,I think spayin and neutering should be mandatory also.That's just my thinking.

Luba December 7th, 2003 12:13 PM

I agree Mona

Any shelter that adopts out animals should have a mandatory spay/neuter program or they are just contributing to the overwhelming problem.

Not only do poor stray animals have to fend for themselves after WE as people domesticated them, BUT because of their living arrangements being strays they tend to pick up a great number of viruses and parasites.

This inturn gets OUR pets that do have homes ill from sniffing at and or unfortunately eating another animals feces.

I couldn't count the number of times my dog Rusty became ill because strays or even outdoor cats used our yard and gardens as litter boxes. Ofcourse there was something about the smell of that poop cause Rusty always found it :confused: and well u know the rest.....

I paid many a pretty penny on vet bills and many nights and days with my dog nursing him back to health because of another persons ignorance and lack of care and concern.

Quite honestly if I were to add it up I'm sure the vet bills for those things alone combined to atleast total $1500 bux and countless sleepless nights and days off work.

So that's just another spin on it!!


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