Last week the vet put my cat Kiwi on Fluoxetine, or a generic form of Prozac.
They don’t make tiny versions of the drugs for animals. This is the same stuff that people take, only it’s in a much smaller dosage: the vet broke up her pills into smaller pieces.
A few days ago, a Facebook friend from high school joked: “just couldn’t take all the pressure of laying around, eating out of a bowl, and shitting in a box?”
She is a pretty high maintenance little cat, but it is a bit more complicated than that.
A few weeks ago, I noticed that Kiwi had an accident on our love seat. Fearing a urinary tract infection, I took her to the vet right away.
Other than a pretty nasty case of fleas (which she picked up from my friend Jeannette’s cat) the vet found that Kiwi had cat crystals, which are essentially kidney stones in cats. These crystals block her up and hurt her when she tries to pee so she goes where she’s most comfortable: on our furniture.
Believed to be caused by her food–which has high levels of protein in it–I was recommended a more appropriate and rather expensive brand of food. Because she had a negative association with her box, I also had to buy her a new litter box and a new type of litter.
(Also expensive was the 9 months of Frontline, flea powder for carpet and the urine removal cleaner.)
Because I don’t want my little baby to be uncomfortable, I don’t want her to ruin our furniture and I don’t want to stress Phil, I knew I had to do all I could to make this stop immediately.
After two weeks, the accidents started happening again. I took her back in and the lab techs found that she had a whole lot of bacteria in her urine: she was prone to making these crystals.
Two visits later, for a total of three vet visits, the doctor ruled out a whole lot of conditions, leaving Feline Idiopathic Cystitis as the remaining cause for her problem. Kiwi gets stressed out, it irritates her bladder and she makes these crystals.
She’s already pretty skiddish and has been that way since she’s been little–she was taken from her mom too early. It took some process of elimination, but we were able to determine exactly what was causing her so much unrest: the cat who lives across from us, a huge, male tuxedo cat named Achilles is making her anxious. He sits outside atop his carpet covered cat tree, howling, sometimes for hours at a time.
She hasn’t had any accidents since she went on the medication, but the vet said it will take a few weeks to fully have an effect on her.
In the meantime, we’re doing our best to reduce her stress –we got rid of her fleas and we’re keeping the blinds closed when Achilles is outside– and just hoping that that Prozac helps. Keep your fingers crossed, all.