Life is still not wanting to play with Shy, mostly I guess, because Shy really doesn’t play nice. Now, Aston rearranged his work room a while back and somehow some boxes and other stuff ended up in our already narrow hallway, you know, just for the time being. No matter, the cats love it. There is just something about cat’s and boxes…
Life, sitting on a box, Shy acting all adorable. You do see the halo, right?
Shy, being evil, trying to make Life play, but not daring to poke her without a box between them.
Shy, back to being adorable…
Shy hiding in the litter box. She does that… It does require her humans to keep it clean at all times, because one of the best places for playing is in the litter box.
Keeping a sneaky eye on Life.
Telling Life, “You shall not pass!” in an almost perfect Gandalf impression. Life is a bit of a Balrog though, and does not scare easily.
Now Life, in her element, the princess on her throne… It is impossible to sleep in this house without that cat. I even tried lying on the side, figuring she would fall down, but no. She can balance… Or maybe I am getting fat…
Good morning, puny human.
Shy is learning how to undo my curtains these days, which is much more fun that lying on people.
Oh, and if anyone notices that Life has had her tail shaved, I can reveal that she had some crazy allergy reaction and the best way for me to treat it, was to shave her. We totally got it under control in no time and we kind of like her poodle look.
You will notice that I am not really writing about my horses at the moment. I have to admit, I am at a loss for what to do about Saleem. I found a hospital where I would actually feel good about taking him, where I just might trust the people and all…
I keep flicking back and forth between just taking him in, and getting it over with, to pulling the breaks, wondering if he can ride it out somehow.
I mean, back in the day, horses didn’t have their teeth removed when one broke. They survived. Horses has a rather special ability to seal off the nerve ends in their teeth, over time… What would he prefer? Surgery now, with the possibility of a long and painful recovery with a lot of complications, but the option of one day, getting through it and making a full recovery?
Or would he prefer having sporadic eating issues- now please don’t get me wrong, he eats, he is not losing weight, he eats everything I give him, but the hay can cause him some trouble, I am still not sure why- that might go away on its own, if given time?
Of course, if it doesn’t go away, I will have to take him in and then, stalling, would only prolong his agony. Still…
What if he does recover without evasive treatment? Wouldn’t that be, by far, the best?
I keep thinking of Poseidon. He had a nasal infection the last winter I had him, a really bad one. He was dripping blood and infection from his nose for weeks, and since he was a very special horse, who only I could touch, our treating options were very limited.
My vet advised me then, to have him submitted to a hospital, for surgery as well. I flat out refused. Hospitalizing a horse like Poseidon was not an option. It would have killed him and he would have killed half the hospital staff…
So I was advised to euthanize him. Which is kind of the two options I am facing here, with Saleem. Surgery or euthanizing. With Poseidon, I asked for a fighting chance, I pleaded for his life. I was allowed 14 days of antibiotic treatment on the off chance that it MIGHT kill whatever infection he had. The vet told me to my face that it wouldn’t work, because he had, most likely, something stuck inside his nose, or higher up in the respiratory system, and until that was removed, the infection wouldn’t go away. It made sense. I just had to try. I couldn’t put him down without trying something.
Poseidon was on ten days of antibiotics, at the end of which I had to give up on completing the treatment, because of how his muscles tensed up and I simply couldn’t inject him anymore. Holding my breath, I put the needle away on the eleventh day and watched… as my horse recovered without surgery.
I had him for six months afterwards, and he was euthanized because of his arthritis, that spring, but that nasal infection just died against all odds… Without evasive treatment.
I can’t help but wonder if I submit Saleem now, do I do it for him, or for me? Will it be for my own peace of mind? Back then, with Poseidon, I had no doubt in my heart that any other, of my horses had been submitted at the hospital instantly, no questions asked. It was simply because I COULDN’T hospitalize Poseidon, that I didn’t. Saleem, I can. Why then, am I not doing it? Why then, am I not in a hurry to have his broken tooth removed, when it is clearly bothering him from time to time?
I don’t know. I keep asking myself if I think that he can pull through this, like Poseidon did, and I honestly think he can. The question is, do I dare wait? Am I too afraid of being a horrible horse mommy, to give him a week or two, before I submit him to the pain and the stress of an operation? We all know that if I ask horse people, they will all tell me to submit him, yesterday, and how dare I not having done so already. I just think that horses these days… are operated upon way too easily. It has sort of become a trend, to just drop your poor horse off at the nearest hospital whenever problems arise and have the vets fix it, and should it die during surgery, well it is ensured, so who cares, and should it suffer greatly in recovery, it will go away in time… And it will, I know.
I just don’t know what the ethical thing to do is, right now. What Saleem would chose, if I could ask him. I have to say, choosing to have your jaw broken and the pieces of the tooth pulled out through your cheek… He would have to be in a lot of pain, to choose that, wouldn’t he? Wouldn’t you?
I don’t think he is, in a lot of pain. Saleem is the kind of horse who gets horribly sad when something is bothering him, and other than him spitting out an occasional hay ball, (driving me insane,) he seems perfectly happy and normal and my vet couldn’t put her finger on a reason for why the broken tooth would bother him now, three months after it first broke.
I don’t know. I just don’t know. I find that the cats are easier to smile at, at the moment. This is wearing me down, I won’t lie. But that, because it is killing me, is not reason enough to hospitalize him. It just isn’t.
Asking myself one final question, for the night then. What if, Saleem had been Poseidon and surgery had not been an option? What would I have done then?
Exactly what I am doing. Asked my vet for equipment so I could help him keep the broken tooth clean, and then, nothing else. If this had been Poseidon, I wouldn’t have freaked out or even contemplated euthanizing him. I really wouldn’t.
It is strange. For the 14 years I lived and breathed for Poseidon, I was on my own, and I pulled him through lots of things, with my vets looking at him from a safe distance, supplying me with what I medication I may need… I always knew surgery wasn’t an option, so I always found other ways. When he got kicked in the face and broke his lip, I handled it on my own, without having him stitched up and he healed without a scar, much unlike the others, whom I have had stitched up…
I am not saying that I won’t have my kiddos stitched up if they should get deep wounds again, (fingers crossed they won’t,) don’t get me wrong, what I am saying is, I guess, that sometimes we maybe tend to treat too much…
Poseidon lived for 17 years and was touched by the vets less than five times. (Fully sedated castration, two teeth checks that nearly killed my vet, and the day he was euthanized.) In all honesty, we did just fine on our own. Why then, am I leaning so much towards hospitalizing Saleem now, because of a few hay balls? Because I believe it is the right thing to do, or because it is what the equestrian world will tell me, I should do?