Isegrim seemed a bit under the weather. He was too calm, too much sleeping in his cushion-basket. Not playing enough with his huge playmate Hrimnir, or for that matter, with his dam Freya. He even stopped suckling when she pushed him away, giving up without protest or persevering. And when in the past days there have been crusts around his eyes, now it seemed that a liquid was slowly seeping through his closed lids. It did not go away. And that meant trouble.
A couple of days ago The Mistress noticed that it had become thick oozing liquid, green of colour, clearly coming from the eyes who had gone red to boot. There was no other alternative, and thus a visit to the Man In White was put into effect. Little Isegrim had never travelled in the travel-cage before, and he didn’t like it one bit. In the waiting room he kept meowing his little head off. The charming effect it had on the other visitors was devastating to say the least. No simian can sit undisturbed when a tiny kitty is in distress ! Fortunately we didn’t have to wait long.
The Man In White was instantly charmed too. It was love at first sight, but unilateral to say the least. Isegrim was scared, terrified, and very alone-feeling, the poor tyke. But one glance from the MIW was enough, he pronounced the verdict immediately: “That looks like a herpes-infection, conjunctivitis, not a doubt about it.” It appears to be quite common amongst kitty-cats, they get infected mostly at birth, by their dams. And if not, they will acquire the virus later, through contact with other cats. It is not unlike the herpes-virus many simians suffer from, but different enough that it cannot jump species.
The virus, as is also the case with simians, is wont to manifest its nefarious presence whenever the carrier is weakened by something. Feral kittens and older felines are affected the most, but adult cats can succumb to it too – especially in times of stress. In many cases it manifests itself as conjunctivitis, an inflammation in the eyes. If you do not treat it then secondary bacterial infections may join the party and wreak terrible havoc on your kitty, ending with blinding him or her permanently.
So, swift and good treatment is paramount. In the case of Isegrim this meant eye-drops – which he allowed the MIW to apply without a fuss – and anti-biotics. The latter to make sure any secondary infections are dealt with, trampled, and kept down real hard. The jab in his buttocks didn’t distress him too much either, although he did make a dash for the travel-cage immediately afterwards. But what really, really, REALLY upset him was the thermometer.
You see, whereas simians might have their temperature taken by putting that pesky thing in the mouth or in an armpit, for kitties there is only one possible orifice and that is where the sun don’t shine. The MIW was so kind as to apply a generous dose of lubricant before inserting the offending item but little Isegrim was offended nevertheless. Not to say enraged, furious, and utterly mad. His howls were impressive. His squirming only made matters worse, prolonging the ordeal because a temp had to be taken at any cost. But eventually the device beeped and we discovered that the tyke did have a slight fever. Which happens to be common for his type of infection.
But all the way back to home did he complain on top of his tiny lungs. And he didn’t stop complaining either when we arrived at the House of Chaos and I set him free from the travel-cage. He immediately made a bee-line towards his dam, howling all the way, turned around, and offered the violated orifice up to her for inspection and subsequent tender motherly care whilst continuing to give voice to his complaints, scare and pain. Yet, to his utter disappointment Freya was not inclined to apply her raspy tongue to the invaded site. The lubricant was Vaseline, and Vaseline is definitely not yummy ! She only checked whether he was all-right and then turned away, leaving her thoroughly dejected offspring to tend to himself. There are just things that even Mom won’t do…
The eye-drops the Man In White had applied worked miracles: in just a few hours the yucky ooze was gone and his tiny little orbs were shiny as if brand-new. I did have to administer some kind of eye-gel and oral anti-biotics to him for a week afterwards though, but Isegrim has recovered really fast and is again his old boisterous and hungry self. Much to Freya’s chagrin, because that meant he started suckling again. And he won’t take a no for an answer that little one. Not this time.
Picture below: Isegrim, with the onset of his conjunctivitis. Note the stuff leaking from his eyes.
Aaahh… a glorious weekend. When friends join with friends and have a great old time. Like, at the Friday Ark, or the Carnival of the Cats over at My Big Fat Orange Cat’s, or Weekend Cat Blogging done by Paulchens Foodblog, or the Bad Kitty Festival Cats of Chaos hosted by Meezer Tails.