TODAY I SPENT $546 FOR PEACE OF MIND

  1. I have an old cat
  2. She's 17
  3. I've had her since I was 12
    We found her at a farm stand we stopped at to get corn on our way home from swimming in the lake. That's my little sister with her. She was 6, and named her Patches.
  4. We had other cats already and this tiny little shit would go up to them and try and claw their eyes out. We had to keep her separated from the rest for their safety despite the fact that they were all bigger than her.
  5. She'd bring home jack rabbits she'd caught, wait until we saw her then kill them in front of us.
  6. She'd disappear for days on what I like to think of as blood quests then come back and expect her kibble to be waiting. She's always hated that canned garbage: probably because warm, fresh meat killed with your own teeth tastes better.
  7. Once she somehow accidentally got locked in a closet, and we didn't find her for weeks. (She must've meowed but we had a few cats and I guess no one noticed). There were a few boxes in there, but she made the one full of home videos her toilet probably as revenge for us locking her in there in the first place.
  8. She ran away when we had the audacity to get two orange kittens (please no one ask how many cats we had - a bunch, okay! Borderline-hoarder status).
  9. After a year she showed up on our porch. Declawed. Someone must've taken her in and tried to tame her, but she escaped and came back to where it was less shitty: our home.
  10. I moved out of my parents house into a studio apartment when I was 19.
  11. A few months later my sister told me she was going to "get rid of" Patches. My sister's room was where we usually kept her so she wouldn't annihilate the other cats. And my sister was 13, pubescent, irritable, and had started to really hate Patches so she threatened to take her to a shelter, and this cat isn't the cuddly kind that would be adopted.
  12. I said, "Fuck no! Give me that!" And took her to live with me. I was lonely and wanted something to sleep with and a cat is safer than a dude.
  13. Her and I got along pretty well. She'd never been a cuddly cat, but she started to sleep in my bed with me, and sit on the couch beside me when I watched tv. And hated all my boyfriends/friends/anyone who invaded her space.
  14. Then I moved into a house with some friends and she even accepted their presence. But still basically hated them.
  15. When I went to grad school she stayed with my then boyfriend (we'd been living together and I couldn't find an affordable apartment in New York that allowed cats). I'd see her on the weekends but the stress caused her to lick most of the fur off of her stomach, and expose a pink patch.
  16. Last year when I went to Europe for a month and had a cat sitter checking in on her she went a little looney, but was very happy to see me when I got home.
    (That's my leg to the right: she's basically sitting one my lap)
  17. So this cat is kind of a jerk, and really feisty, but that's part of her charm, and I love the wee beasty.
  18. AND NOW I GET TO THE FIVE HUNDRED SMACKERS
  19. So I wake up and see she's breathing rapidly.
  20. I petMD her symptoms and freak out and assume she's dying (which is conceivable since she's 17, and also rapid breathing is a sign of heat stroke which can lead to organ failure and it's been pretty brutal lately)
  21. So I call my vet and rush her over.
  22. The first thing I ask is if it could be because of the heat. He tells me, "No, she'd have to be a 100 year old person in a 14th floor apartment in New York for this heat to do that to her even if you don't have air conditioning."
  23. So they want to do blood work, and x-rays, and maybe oxygen therapy.
  24. He mentions that heart failure can happen very quickly in cats.
  25. I agree to all of it because now I'm sure she's dying, but medicine can save her, I'm sure! Medicine can fix everything!
  26. They run the tests.
  27. Nada
  28. The run some more
  29. Still nothing
  30. They rush the x-rays to a radiographer
  31. Guess what he sees?
  32. Zip, zero, zilch
  33. "Good news," the vet says, "we ruled out heart failure, and her blood work and lungs look normal for a senior cat."
  34. "It might just be the heat causing her to breath a little more quickly"
    I could have fucking murdered him at this point after he was so dismissive of my suggestion in the first place. I ASKED THAT BEFORE ALL THE TESTS!!!!
  35. Then he has his vet tech hand me a bill for $546.
    Probably because he could sense the rage boiling over. Not only did you charge me a buttload, you really pissed off my cat. I mean, she hates the vet already, but all the poking and prodding took it to a new level.
  36. But at least I know it's nothing deadly.
  37. Peace of mind when you think your lil buddy of over half your life might die ain't cheap.
  38. ... Also
  39. I take solace in the fact that the entire time Patches was hissing and biting every fucking person that came near her. And each one felt like they should tell me how, "she seems unhappy/a little irritable/cranky" I wish she still had her claws so she could do some real damage.