Poop is the big topic around the house these days. And why should it stop with our daughter when there is another creature who is notable for his waste. Our cat, Oliver, has been having the driest poops I've ever seen. It's like they crumble into dust. There is no moisture whatsoever contained in them. Given that his preferred water source is the toilet, despite having a nice, new metal water dish, I just shake my head and leave the toilet seat up. But that should give you an idea that we're not dealing with a rational animal. Anyway his poop is weird and he needed a well-pet check up so I took him in to the vet earlier this week.
He's 11 years old and back in the day he was known to be FEISTY at the vet. Like don't go near this animal, you will lose a digit. Oliver has mellowed in his old age and I do wonder if the energy it takes to fend off an amorous toddler on a daily basis zaps what he'd normally reserve for a vet visit. He was "chill" initially and even during the vet's physical exam. She felt his gut and said he was constipated. She also said sometimes older animals have problems with their anal glands which do something (she explained but I forgot) toward the end of the digestive journey. Sometimes these glands get clogged and have to be "expressed" or "massaged" or "dealt with" to keep things flowing.
As soon as the vet said "anal glands" and "massaged", I though, 'F-no, I am not dealing with that. There is enough disgusting bodily fluid and excrement around here...' I knew about this condition due to some posts my girl Dooce wrote about her dog and they were not fun. Luckily, the vet staff said they would handle it but for an additional fee. Whatever--it's well worth it. They took him away and were going to do this very joyous procedure in another room where I assume there was a sink and they could secure his claws of fury. Sidney and I waited in the exam room. A few minutes go by and then loud, unhappy meows bellow down the hall. Oh man. But it had to be done. Then the vet came back in the room after 5-10 minutes and said they now felt he really needed an enema too.
"And you guys are going to do it, right?" I asked.
"Oh yes, right now," she said.
"Well, he's already angry at the world..." I said.
We were told to come back an hour later after they had done the procedure and cleaned him up. Evidently he "produced" quite a bit and he was in the most foul mood imaginable. They warned me not to uncage him near Sidney that evening. So we gave him a lot of space once we got home but not too long after he was back to normal.
Now he seems like a happier cat these past few days. They suggested we try to give him some wet food with pumpkin, which helps digestion. Problem is, this cat is pickier than his mistress and his toddler-sister. I have 5 different brands of fancy, gluten free, organic cat food with one of the ingredients being pumpkin. I'm on the 3rd one to see if he'll even take a bite of it. He doesn't know how lucky he is...the little toilet taster.