Just a touch of arthritis

Good news today, as the vet checked out Cricket’s knee, and said it was definitely still in place and working properly. Given the fact Cricket got so much relief from Rimadyl, we’re going to chalk this current episode of limping up to our recent damp weather and arthritis. While I certainly thought arthritis was possible, it seemed odd to me that it would have such a sudden and dramatic onset, as Cricket hasn’t done any limping on that leg since last year. Still, I’ll happily accept arthritis as a diagnosis, as it’s better than a torn ACL.

We’re to keep Cricket on Rimadyl for the next few days, and if she doesn’t improve by the end of next week, we’ll take her back for a consulation with an orthopedic surgeon. We had such heavy rainfall here on Monday and Tuesday (over an inch in 24 hours), but the sun is finally out and drying things up, so I hope Cricket will be feeling better soon. I hadn’t really noticed until today but the weather is bothering my joints a bit, too… my left thumb has been throbbing all day, and I’m going to attribute that to the damp, cool weather. No more hitch-hiking for me for a while.

Phoenix also had good news at the vet, with perfect results on her blood work and urinalysis. Her last blood work showed elevated liver enzymes, and we were concerned that would continue because she takes prednisone every other day for her allergies. It puts us in a difficult position, because the prednisone really makes a difference in her allergy comfort level, yet we realize it could be doing permanent damage to her liver.

Luckily her blood work showed her liver enzymes were well within the normal range, so we’ll be able to keep her on her current medication schedule. The pred has made such a difference, and Phoenix went practically the entire months of August and September without needing a bath or ear cleaning, which is unprecedented. Her skin looks good, her ears are clean, her eyes are doing better, and no bladder crystals. We still have to see about surgery for her entropion, but the eyedrops keep her eyes from being irritated so that isn’t urgent.

Our vet’s office has had so many staff changes lately… receptionists leaving, new people arriving and leaving in the same week, techs departing, and our regular vet cutting back to only working a couple of days per week. It makes the office feel strange to us, as there’s something comforting about walking into a place where “everybody knows your name”.

The new people are certainly nice enough, but it’s like going back to visit your high school after you’ve graduated—the place is familiar, yet it just doesn’t feel completely comfortable like it used to. If any vets or vet office employees are reading this, your clients love to see familiar faces both in the front office and in the exam rooms, so do what you can to keep the good staff members around.

Those of us who visit your place of business regularly sure appreciate the extra emotional support from people we feel we “know”, especially when visits to the vet’s office can involve such stress.