Sunday, 11 March 2018

Simba becomes Simballess!

This is another post about my little cat, Simba, even though we can hardly say he's a little cat  anymore now. I like to believe he was born on July 31st (at least that feels the estimation) so that makes him around seven months now, with 3.5kg and with his own Instagram account. He's still a little terrorist and I've no answers for the letter I wrote him about two months ago but there's been little progress when it comes to answering his name. I'm pretty sure he know his name is Simba by now, but most of the times chooses to ignore it. He does respond very well to "Let's go eat, Simba?".

We took Simba to the vet last friday, who told us he was completely developped by now and he recommended neutereing him as soon as possible to avoid problems at home. We always knew we were going to neuter him. It made no sense to us to expose him to the torture the mating season is and we'd avoid all the territorial marking we still hadn't seen but weren't very keen to. So we scheduled it for the next day (do you get the pun in the title now? see what I did there?) and that meant he couldn't eat anything that afternoon and the morning before the surgery. That was the most complicated part because, as a little terrorist, he usually manages to find food we didn't even know it was there and sometimes, goes through various levels of "security" to reach the food such as a bag inside a bag under a lot of tupperwares on top of the balcony. That's how much of gluton he is, it's indeed a real problem!

So the morning after he got inside the transporter fairly easily, unlike every other time and I took him to the vet. Despite being reassured this was a very easy surgery it's a surgery nontheless so I spent the day worried about my "little" 3.5kg kitten. Since he would be asleep, the vet would also take some blood to test him for FIV, which is the Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (equivalent to the human HIV) and FeLV, the Feline Leukemia Virus. Both diseases, even the virus themselves are not letal, means his immunity would be reduced and a simple cold means endless headaches since his immune system can't fight it properly. They're very easily transmited: fights, scratches or even saliva and sand boxes. Because we didn't know anything about his past, we were very worried he would test positive for any of these as they will eventually impact his quality of life.

Thankfully, when I picked him up, I was informed he had tested negative for both diseases. He was already awake and ready to go when I got there. The vet told me he could be a little dizzy and aggressive because of the anesthesia and may even vomit, so we would have to keep him confined to a dark room with no food and make water available to him only after midnight. We would also have to desinfect his scars twice a day, which in itself proved to be a challenge because I'm almost sure Simba is bipolar: he is a tiger with us and a kitten with the vet.

He reacted better than we expected. He got out of the transporter like it had been just another visit to the vet. We didn't find him dizzy and he didn't vomit. He was our little old Simba, ready for another one! I think he didn't even noticed something was missing! Yesterday we returned to the vet with him, who confirmed he was healing very well. Of course, it will take a maximum of six weeks for the hormones to completely leave his system, which means we will have to be even more careful with food near him because both his appetite and lazyness will increase, so the risk of getting fat will too. I am not sure if this will make the running like a mad cat disappear, or the nighttime crazy activity but I do hope it calms him down somewhat. Like I said, he is a bipolar cat: oftentimes he is cuddling with us on the sofa and the next moment he is running around like crazy without a purpose.

While talking about this recent news with a friend, I learned that in the first-language English countries you don't castrate your pets but "neuter", "spay" or "fix" them instead because of the torture association with the first word. I guess here in Portugal we're still slightly barbaric because we only call it "castration" or "spaying" but mostly castration. I understand the "neuter" word but I am still not sure what is there to "fix" besides possibly their behaviour.

Do you think we should neuter our pets? Let me know about your opinion and don't forget that you can follow my Simba's adventures on Instagram!

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