Saturday, July 10, 2010

Debits And Credits

When last we left our intrepid Sheepie, she was happily reporting on the acquisition of a free cat courtesy of the local shelter.  Since then, it has been difficult to not notice the way things sort of waver between the debit and credit columns on life's little tally sheet.

We made it to the vet on Thursday without incident.  The new carrier (forty dollars for the sturdiest one I could find, ten of those being for the bigger size) worked like a charm.  I was able to get the Very Complicated Kitty in and behind bars before he had a chance to realize what was happening.  We were off!

When adopting from the local shelters, the first visit to participating vets is at no cost to the adopter.  A free check up for the free kitty?  Yay!  (free plus forty bucks for the new carrier...)  However, I knew I was going to be dropping some dollars there so I brought my checkbook and kept it handy.  The Cat Whisperer gave the VCK a clean bill of health (known issues aside) and then we began shopping for foodstuffs.  They happened to have two cases of the edibles he can have (low cal and good for cats with struvite crystals) so I snagged both.  We also agreed that he would continue on the medication prescribed while he was at the shelter.

The VCK is on a tricyclic for anxiety.  I kind of hoped to start weaning him off that, but the doc suggested we keep him on it.  Since she is an Earth Mother of the first order, I kind of took that seriously.  If she wasn't asking that I get up at 4:00 each morning to wave aromatic oils around, burn sage and then lead the household felines in meditation exercises, then he probably really needs the meds.

The vet tech assisted me in getting everything out to the car.  Two cases of canned food and a bag of freeze dried treats designed to help the resident fat boys get over the loss of their beloved kibble made the ride home with me.  Total cost:  $83.00.

The Cat Whisperer called the prescription in to the local pharmacy for me, but managed to get the wrong one.  I spent some time tracking down a bottle of anti-anxiety medication, finally locating it today.  Now my cat and I are registered with completely different pharmacies and I don't think that bears discussing too much.  Fortunately, he only needs half a pill per day instead of the full pill I thought he was taking twice per day.  (glad I caught that little detail before I overdosed the poor guy with good feelings...)  A thirty day prescription will last him two months.  Total cost for today's excursion:  $12.00.  It would have been less, but I don't happen to have my own pill splitter on hand and the very nice pharmacist strongly suggested this investment based upon his own pet medicating experience.  (he has dogs, but I don't hold it against him...)

Yesterday, the online service that the vet uses for home delivery called to see if I was ready to set up auto-shipping for the food.  I was planning to call them myself, so this was a nice gesture on their part.  The pleasant lady couldn't pronounce her patient's name, but she had the good grace to be embarrassed by that.  I opted to not tell the whole Androcles And The Lion fable by way of explanation and just let her do her job.  A monthly delivery of prescription canned food will start arriving next month.  Cost:  Around forty bucks per month.  Half-price delivery if you do the whole auto-ship thingie.  Beats driving to the vet's office in a snowstorm, I suppose...

The cynics amongst you might be thinking, "Well Sheepie, I guess you got a little more than you bargained for there!"  Not so.  I actually went on the shelter's website before visiting in person and noted that many of the "interesting" kitties had some dietary restrictions.  I'd already planned ahead for that possibility.  I'll admit that the carrier and the meds were not quite what I expected, but I still think I was more prepared than not.

And where are we in the debit vs. credit standings?  Well...I guess it all depends on how you look at it.  I have taken a goodly chunk out of the money I earned for working that extra week at the start of the summer vacation, granted.  But that's just dollars and cents.  I still feel like I'm head and shoulders above the poverty line when it comes to feline bliss.  The VCK is a love bug who keeps me in snuggles and the Absurdly Gi-normous Kitty in good company.  The big investment from a financial standpoint is done now.  It's all about reaping the rewards from here on out.

While not getting the newest resident settled, I've managed to get in a few other activities.  Yesterday, I made some relish using cukes and onions from the farmer's market.

Three jars ended up in the credit column.  The fourth didn't seal.  Which means I need to go buy some hamburg and buns fairly soon.  Not sure if that is a debit...

The poor, abandoned sock project finally saw some game time once the humidity settled down a bit.  It now has a heel and the beginnings of a gusset situation.  That is a credit no matter how you look at it.  Slow credits, but credits nonetheless.

And so it goes.  You win some, you lose some.  If you come out of it all with a little bit more than what you started with, then you can call it a good day.  The cats are all fed, medicated as needed and napping happily.  I've got more in the way of sockage than I did a week ago and the means for dressing a burger should the urge overtake me.  I'm feeling pretty good.

That's not to say I didn't consider dipping into the VCK's pill bottle once or twice, though.  I'm only human...



Anonymous said...

Given how much happiness VCK has already brought to AGK (and you), I'm pretty sure the credits overwhelm the debits by a good margin.

Beth said...

Your relish looks great! I need to make some with the cucumbers we're growing. Happy cats = happy cat mama. :)

Kath said...

I guess you can't put a dollar value on kitty snuggles!, can you? And for me - two cats happily coexisting would be worth more than diamonds!

Agatha's Gran said...

I agree with Kath. Two cats happily coexisting so quickly is worth all their weight
in gold!
You might consider checking 1-800-PetMeds for the Rx for VCK. They had some pretty decent prices when I had a diabetic cat on meds. And it arrives quickly right to your door with a nice little free sack of catnip!

Yarnhog said...

If it makes you feel any better, I can't remember the last time I made it out of the vet's office for under $200. And with three dogs, there are a fair number of vet visits.

trek said...

I once had a cat with similar crystalline issues. Never had a cat that needed TCAs though.

At least they are cheap! :o)

(My word verification has "nom" in it. Must be a sign that the kitties like the new treats.)

Donna Lee said...

I wonder what we would have done years ago before anyone thought about anti anxiety meds for cats? The poor VCK would just have been a nervous animal all the time.

It's amazing how the boys are getting along so well so quickly.

Denise said...

Your relish looks great! Another use for it would be to mix in some mayo and you have tarter sauce or you could mix in some mayo and tuna for tuna salad (just dont let you-know-who smell it lol) :)

April said...

Would you like to meet some of my $100.00 rats?


Who, in their right mind, spends $100 on vermin?

debsnm said...

I'd say,with the new addition to your family, you're squarely in the plus column. You'd have to buy him food anyway, and there's always the possibility that he might come off the meds. It's all good!

Anonymous said...

You're definitely aheaad in the the credit column - kitty love is worth every penny you have to spend and then some! :-)