All is going well for Painy, but hasn’t all been smooth sailing.
He came home a week after surgery (conservative vet I think!), was on painkillers, still bandaged, initially was pottering around the yard, eating & happy.
I then set him up in my bedroom which is his fave indoor place. He could jump on & off the bed no probs at all! He was happy to stay indoors there. Weather was a bit wet so he needed to be indoors to keep bandage dry.
But over the next few days he seemed to become less active, purring but not lifting his head much, or arching his back with pleasure when his back was scratched like he usually would. Kinda subtle differences in behaviour & I wasn’t sure if it was just that he was fed up with being bandaged! He went back to vet on day 4 at home for routine bandage check (that it wasn’t getting soggy), & maybe take out staples & replace with sutures where needed. I told them I thought things weren’t quite right. But Vet was happy with him. He didn’t remove the bandage as planned coz it seemed fine. He was eating & they thought all was good. Painy hadn’t been given antibiotics on discharge from vet as they thought the week’s course he’d had would be enough. He was home again the same day.
He was booked in at vet for review & bandage change under anaesthetic, plus staples removal, 4 days later (a Monday). By Sunday I was becoming concerned (mother knows best!!!) & would have taken him back Monday even if he wasn’t booked in. He was really lethargic, barely eating or drinking. Worse still, by Sunday night I realised I could smell not only antiseptic on the bandage, but also the unmistakable odour (I work in a hospital!) of an infected wound!!!
Poor Painy!! First thing Monday he was starting to be shivery, & lip licking a lot (= nausea?), & smelt dreadful. Off to vet ASAP!!! They discovered the wound was indeed breaking down & had infected material under it. Apparently this can happen where the skin is joined over the removed tissue, because the skin is not connected to the flesh underneath like it would be in a normal wound. A friend tells me it happens with human amputations too. So wound was cleaned up, staples removed & sections sutured where needed, a drain put in, antibiotics restarted. I visited him that pm & he was a new boy – purring & smooching & bright eyed, moving around the cage!!
He stayed at the vet for another 5 days (his new home!). I visited daily, the vet nurse made sure he got his ‘physio’ every day – a good walk out of the cage, & he hasn’t looked back! His happy-go-lucky personality has made him a favourite at the vet’s!
Finally got him properly home this week. For a few days he still had bandage on, went back just for a consult to have bandage changed & wound checked. And yesterday the bandage finally came off! He still has a small hole where drain came out, so needs to stay indoors to keep it clean until it heals fully. But he’s sooo happy to be able to wash himself properly & have a good scratch where the bandage was! At this stage he seems quite happy to stay indoors, which is unusual for him but making life much easier. He’s also smoochier than before the surgery.
So it’s been a bit of a saga, but a good outcome in the end. Wound looks weird – I’ll post a photo later – because the skin is a bit loose & fur needs to regrow. I’m sure he’ll look much better with a full coat of fur! But he’s happy & eating & moving freely at last!!