My parents had a white cat when I was born, who apparently didn't like me at all and would lay in wait on the stairs and swipe at me as I toddled past. Fortunatly I don't remember this at all, so I am unabashedly a cat person; I like dogs, & I'm sure if/when (if Eva has anything to do with it it'll most certainly be "when") we get a dog I will be smitten, but my heart belongs to cats.
Edith has been the complete opposite of that white cat (Sorcha?), and has been an absolute swwetheart with Eva. She quite literally watched over my shoulder in the first few weeks after Eva was born, and often tried to wash her. Edith has become a little more wary since Eva became more mobile and more interested in pulling tails, but she is still remarkably good with Eva and often spends the day hanging out with us in Eva's room.
A couple of weeks ago I noticed she was limping, and as we hadn't taken her for a check-up recently that seemed like as good a time as any to find a vet in Asheville. Well, we didn't really look that far, there is an animal hospital not 5 minutes drive from our house and we pass it every morning, so we took Edith there.
Being Edith she purred so much they had a hard time listening to her breathing and heart. Then they took some blood which she wasn't as happy about, but they found nothing wrong so they sent her home. We got the bloodwork back on Friday and it mentioned that her triglycerides were high, so we arranged to take her back in on Tuesday. On Saturday I noticed she was having trouble breathing, so we kept an eye on her and soon realised she wasn't her usual self - She wasn't drinking, she wasn't grooming herself and there was only limited racing around the apartment.
Of course I did a little light internet veterinary research, which I fretted over until I woke up at 5 o'clock this morning having convinced myself that her kidneys were shutting down, and we were about to lose her. So I insisted we take her to the vet first thing this morning, and by 9 she had been x-rayed and given something to help her breath. I hated having to leave her at the hospital (which was really quite nice!), bcause there's simply no way to explain to a cat, however intelligent, what's going. I just had to take a deep breath and let the vet get on with it.
The vet called me with updates throughout the day, and what she found was that there was air in the chest cavity which was preventing Edith's lungs from fully inflating (It usually means there has been some sort of trauma, but I have no idea what could have happened, so I'm suspecting the clumsy toddler who doesn't know her own strength or weight yet). The vet used a hypodermic needle to let the air out of the chest, and Edith is apparently breathing much more easily now. She might also have pneumonia, so we'll have to give her anti-biotics and keep an eye on her for a while. I'm just glad Doc C can pick her up on his way back from work, so she'll be home this evening.
Our nick-names for Edith are many and varied, but "The Panzer tank of love" really sums up how determined she is to be affectionate to us. You see this stocky grey shape moving towards you with a pluming tail high in the air and you know you'd better be ready to pay her some attention. That cat is going to love you, damn it, and I'm going to make sure she knows we love her too (not that she ever doubted that - Edith's also rather vain...)