Archive for the ‘pets are children’ Category

Riley Matthew

August 23, 2009

riley lounging

This is Riley Matthew . I’ve been meaning to do a post about him for a while but I got distracted by football. Now you’ve met Riley before in the posting called ‘a child in need’. Riley developed an eye problem when he was six months old and eventually had to have eye surgery. A lot of closed minded people thought we were insane to drive to a specialist in Connecticut (about 4-5 hrs from our house) and pay a substantial amount of money for surgery for A CAT.

     People just didn’t understand that Riley was OUR CHILD not our cat. Just like our 2 daughters we (Kevin & I) would do anything for our kids.

     Riley is my little angel. He was so good when he had his eye problem. Even though we all went through a horrible experience it brought us all closer together.

     I say Riley reminds me of the cowardly lion in the Wizard of Oz. He’s red, well technically ‘red smoke’ so he looks like a lion. He struts around like he owns the place until Calie glares at him and he runs away in fear. He’s also very majestic sometimes. He’ll just sit there and give you this look like ‘worship me’. Then again he is a purebred so maybe he knows something we don’t.

    From the picture above you’ll see he has that pushed- in nose. Its called ‘peke-faced’ persian because it looks like a Pekingese’s face. Some people think he looks mean but he is the sweetest, gentliest soul.

   And he’s spoiled rotten. Somehow I don’t even remember when it started but one day he came into the bathroomwith me. Thanks to Tigger not liking closed doors (see earlier posts) I usually leave the door open about an inch. All 3 have no respect for privacy and just waltz right in. Well one day while I’m brushing my teeth, in comes Riley. He jumps up onto the toilet seat – yes we have to keep the cover down because all 3 have claimed it as their ‘thrown’. Anyway, when Riley wants attention he talks. Okay I know what you’re thinking, he talks ‘cat’ but he still talks. Experts say that a cat can learn up to about a 20 word vocabulary. They really do understand us with a lot of things. Anyway, Riley gave me this ‘pay attention to me Mommy’  face and made a ‘wah’ noise. After finishing my teeth I bent down and started to pet him. Well he started to do it regularly and we got into a routine. Now he comes in, stands up on the toilet seat so that his front paws on the top of the bowl and he looks over his shoulder at me and ‘wah’s me. This has now become his request, no his demand for A MASSAGE. I know you think I’m crazy but he loves me to massage his back. And if I try to skimp and rush through it he ‘wah’s at me in complaint. At the end of the massage I tap (love tap) him on his butt and he jumps down from the toilet.

     The cute thing now is that anytime anyone goes near the bathroom and he’s around he races you to it. It’s hilarious. I can also get him back really good. You see the way our house is set up, from the  living room you can either continue down the hall to the bathroom, or you can make a left and goes downstairs. If he thinks you’re going to the bathroom he’ll run and then I go downstairs instead just to torture him. You know what he does? He whine and howls like an injured wolf. He’s actually woke me up during the night by howling from the toilet seat. I promptly explained to him that the massage parlor is closed at 3:00 a.m. Sometimes if he thinks you’re coming back, he falls asleep in there.. LOL

     But the best part of Riley is that he loves to sleep with us in bed. He prefers to have my pillow but if my head’s there, he makes an adjustment. He plops right next to my head, so you can barely even see me. He has woke me up a number of times by licking me in the ear like a dog. That wakes you up fast, let me tell you.. If I’m awake when he gets up on the pillow he’ll snuggle with me so that his nose in against the side of my neck and it is just the most precious feeling. It brings tears to my eyes.

    You know how experts say that cats smother babies. I’m sure there is truth to it and it probably is a jealous thing but…Riley has plopped on my head actually my face a couple of times and I’ve had to move him off. He wasn’t trying to kill me (at least I don’t think he was) but he just wanted to be as close to me as possible. I don’t know it’s just my opinion.

     Anyway that’s enough gushing about my baby boy.

    Talk soon.

A Child in Need

July 9, 2009

      Today I want to tell you a story about my son Riley. He’s 8 yrs. old now.  He’s a purebred persian with the pushed in nose. He’s what they call a red smoke with beautiful amber colored eyes.

     One day in March 2002, when he was nine months old, he woke up and began rubbing his eye. He wouldn’t open it and it kept tearing and he kept rubbing. My husband and I closed ourselves in the bathroom with him and tried to look at his eye. We couldn’t see anything wrong, but he was in obvious frustration, and likely pain. 

     Of course as it always happens, it was a Sunday so our vet was closed. We brought him to an emergency clinic (veterinary version of urgent care center) where he was diagnosed with a corneal ulcer. The vet said it could have been caused by a number of factors, one of which being a scratch to the eye by one of his sisters. To this day we still don’t know what happened. We have learned though that the persian breed, especially with the pushed in nose (called peek-faced because they look like a pekingese) is prone to this type of ailment.  Well the emergency clinic gave us drops and then told us to follow up with our regular vet.

     We followed up with our vet and over the course of the next six months Riley was on/off eye drops. Eventually at six months our vet told us that Riley had developed a corneal sequestrum. Essentially it means he developed a scab over the scratch which was covering part of his cornea.

      We were given the option of letting Riley live like that or we could see an ophthalmologist. Duh of course we chose the specialist.  She agreed with the diagnosis and tried Rily on some stronger eye salve. We tried that for a couple months without success. She recommended surgery to remove the scab and do a kind of corneal graft from the sclera (white part of the eye) so that he could get his full vision back.

       Add in a couple of facts: (1) between our first visit with specialist and the surgery four months later, she moved her practice to Connecticut, 4 hours away from our house; and (2) the surgery cost @ $1500.00.

       The lawyers at the firm I worked at thought we were absolutely crazy to even consider it. Riley was after all ‘ONLY A CAT’. As one attorney put it does he really have to have perfect vision, it isn’t like he’s blind or anything.

      I was absolutely furious – hello people, this is MY SON we’re talking about. One boss actually teased me and said he’d take care of Riley for free – he just needed a bag, a few rocks and a bridge to throw him off of. NOT FUNNY!!!!!

      For people out there with the like 2-legged variety of children, ‘is there anything you wouldn’t do for your child if they needed surgery?’ 

     No you wouldn’t even flinch, you’d be on the next plane to whatever hospital that could provide the best care to your child, whatever the cost. That is exactly what we did.

    It is uncomprehensible to me that people can’t grasp the fact that MY CHILDREN HAVE FOUR LEGS. We adopted them and we love them the same as any family who adopts a 2-legged child.

    Needless to say, Riley had the surgery and is perfectly healthy now. If you open his eye and know where to look, you can see a little scar on the white part of his eye, but his cornea is perfect.

    So to you parents of the 2 legged variety who can’t understand parents of quadra-peds doing what we did. I have to say that I’m really sad for you because you have a closed mind.

     It’s time to open your minds and realize that animals aren’t THINGS, PROPERTY OR CHATTEL they are children.

     Enough said for today…stay tuned for more rantings.