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feeling awful about my little old lady and worried vet will feel I've neglected her

(28 Posts)
lanternlady Tue 01-Mar-16 21:27:33

But of history about my little 15 year tortoiseshell girl who all our family adore she's never been the happiest of cats , never been a lap cat and has never even really liked much fuss
She has always been a bit of a loner and much prefers her own company whether that's sunnying herself in the garden or sleeping on top of the sofa or on the bed.
She's put up with 2 house moves , a new baby 9 years ago and new boy cat 4 years who she tolerates but isn't a fan of confused
Anyway , as she's got older she just does what she wants to do and we lovingly let her, she's always been brilliant at home never destroyed anything with her claws and never had an accident , not like the other one !!! smile
She always sleeps either on the top of the sofa or on my fleecy dressing gown on the floor next to me at night , and has slept with her paws covered , so we always leave her in peace , I was giving her a little fuss tonight when she stretched out her paws and I'm absolutely mortified to see 2 of her claws on her front paw seem to have grown and are dogging into her paw underneath , I feel so so awful that I have noticed this before .
I am of course going to book an appointment for her to see the vet tomorrow but I just can't believe I haven't noticed this before I feel terrible
. I've just looked at her other paws and whilst none of the other are like that , some are looking quite long ,
She absolutely completely hates going to the vets and I must admit I didn't take her to get her jab last year as it upsets and distresses her so much , to the point that she messes and wets herself in the carrier on the way , and takes at least a day to get over it , and I just thought I would not put her through it as she's getting older .
Is the vet going to think I have completely neglected her ? And judge me as a bad cat owner , it really isn't the case I'm so upset I have let this happen, will she be ok ? Can they do something for her ?
Would love to hear from anyone who has experienced this

ThatsIrrelephant Tue 01-Mar-16 21:39:14

I'm sure it's more common than you think with more sedentary cats. My mum once took her indoor cat to the vet because he was walking with an odd gait - the vet said his claws were a bit too long and were tugging on the carpet, which the cat didn't like!

Can you not just cut/trim the claws yourself? Would save the cat the big stress of going to the vets - unless those two claws are really embedded of course.

IHeartKingThistle Tue 01-Mar-16 21:45:56

I have to take my 17 year old girl to have her claws clipped as she's stopped scratching. She hates it too but I'd rather she drew vet's blood than mine!

lanternlady Tue 01-Mar-16 21:47:00

Thank you answering , now you mention it I noticed her catching herself on the rug on Sunday but because it's a deep pile shaggy type of rug I just thought she'd caught it as she got up .
I don't think she would let me anywhere near her with clipper to be honest plus I'm also scared of hurting her if I cut them too short .
I just feel so bad for her , I hate to think of her in pain .
She's such a lovely little thing , never been a trouble but just a little soulful thing

lanternlady Tue 01-Mar-16 21:47:55

Is the vet likely to think I'm the worse owner ever ???!! And have neglected her badly

Wolfiefan Tue 01-Mar-16 21:48:38

Of course you haven't been an awful owner. I once realised my boy had ripped the very tip of his ear. But I only spotted it after it had started to heal. blush
On another note. Any mobile vets who could do jabs? As she ages she may need more treatment.

lanternlady Tue 01-Mar-16 21:55:53

Thank you wolfie I've been in tears this evening over how I had not noticed before . But she's always sat and slept with her legs under her , so just haven't noticed and it's not been stopping her getting to her food bowl ! Lol
Hadn't thought of a mobile vet , it's certainly something I will have a look at , as she Just gets so distressed as soon as she's in her carrier I don't feel it's fair to her to put her through it

Thisismyfirsttime Tue 01-Mar-16 21:57:41

If course they won't think you're neglectful! She's a cat! If you explain what you did here they'll probably have heard it hundreds of times. She's not limping or dragging herself about, you haven't neglected her at all.

TondelayaDellaVentamiglia Tue 01-Mar-16 21:58:52

it's just like clipping fingernails...just take off the tips with nail clippers

I felt terrible about our old boy, he was never socialised properly as a kitten, the CPL said he was maybe 12-14 weeks old, but the vet reckoned he was more like six months....i only realised he was not a teeny kitten as they had some really teeny ones when we went to collect him
So he was always a bit prickly, attitude wise, great ginger giant fake norwegian forest cat, and in his last year he got matted and untidy looking

He'd sometimes let me groom him, but mostly not, so when he had to go for anything I always worried they;d think I was terrible....but they didn't seem to.

Cats can be very I am sure you are not the worst cat owner in the world.

gamerchick Tue 01-Mar-16 21:59:10

No vets going to think badly of you. Plus its a good chance for a check up.

MyKingdomForBrie Tue 01-Mar-16 22:00:15

Vets can do home visits, if you can afford the extra it would be worth it for the lack of stress to her.

Wolfiefan Tue 01-Mar-16 22:04:37

The thing is if she isn't an affectionate lapcat you would be upsetting her by doing a head to tail check every day.

cozietoesie Tue 01-Mar-16 22:05:36

I have to nip the tips of my old boy's claws because - partly due to his arthritis - he just hasn't got the muscles to scratch properly for his front claws. (Or the teeth for his back claws, but that's a different matter.)

It's an age thing mainly - The Lodger is much younger and I've never been near his claws, front or back.

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Tue 01-Mar-16 22:08:04

Not at all. Most cats will keep their claws down by scratching fence posts or a scratching post so Id think this was unusual. Never crossed my mind in 20 years to check my cats claws.

lanternlady Tue 01-Mar-16 22:09:47

Tondelay- you couldn't of described my one any better -- prickly !! That's her all over . Lol

The most fuss we can give her is about 5 strokes on her head and then you get a bit of a grizzle and off she wonders to just out of your reach and settles down again ! Lol

I think evil eye stare would last forever if I even attempted to clip them . Much better for the vet to do it , at least that way she can hate them and not me smile

Thank you all for being so kind . I feel abit better now , will definitely get her to the vet ASAP

CocktailQueen Tue 01-Mar-16 22:12:36

Ask the vet to come to your house. We had a cat who hated the vet (and would try to rip his head off and gouge his arms every time he saw him) and we got the vet to do home visits for jabs - much easier!

WhirlwindHugs Tue 01-Mar-16 22:14:04

It's definitely an age thing, not scratching any more - and they grow quite quick so it might not have been going on that long. Our vet nurse (we take our 2 oldies in for claw clipping about every 2 months) said that one of ours has stopped shedding his claws too so they're not growing as much but they're really thick and tricky to cut. They don't mind going to the vet so I'm happy to let them do it!

One of ours has also stopped grooming and doesn't like it when you groom his belly (gets bitey when he would never normally) so we eventually ended up taking him in to have some matted fur shaved off. I was really embarrassed but the vet was really nice about it.

cozietoesie Tue 01-Mar-16 22:19:32

I have to groom my old boy as well because he's too stiff to get to places other than his 'personal' grooming. . Luckily he loves the attention.

lanternlady Tue 01-Mar-16 22:22:21

Thanks whirl , it's really reassuring to know that I'm not the only one , we have started brushing her as well now as she doesn't seem to be able to reach down and do the back of her by the tail , she doesn't even enjoy that , we end up chasing her round the kitchen all crouched over with brush in hand grin

cozietoesie Tue 01-Mar-16 22:27:49

Those of you with older cats with grooming issues might find it useful/interesting to read this. My old boy's vet practice are very active for older cats and picked up his arthritis quickly but I really didn't know how prevalent it was until he developed it and I started to do some reading about it.

timtam23 Wed 02-Mar-16 20:43:01

Please don't be too hard on yourself. We missed the same thing with my old boy - vaguely noticed that his claws were making a lot of "clicking" on the floor, but when we finally checked him, his claws were big curved talons & digging into his pads sad. Also they were quite thick & flaky so more difficult to clip cleanly.
We did an emergency trim with normal human nail clippers (which he hated & they were quite rough on his claws) then I bought some proper cat nail clippers from the vet & it was much easier. We used to do it as a team - DH would hold him and stroke him, I'd clip his claws & DH would then ply him with cat treats. He was 16-18 at the time and as he was blind he didn't go out much and had stopped sharpening his claws.

cozietoesie Wed 02-Mar-16 20:53:27

Cat claws seem to become thickened - and even misshapen - with age much as human nails do. (And more difficult to control properly.) It might be worth developing a grooming and foot-splaying relationship with your cat at the earliest opportunity - when you're having a cuddle and very briefly for example - because the odds are they'll welcome some help in later years.

Lonecatwithkitten Wed 02-Mar-16 21:19:10

As cats get older they have reduced ability to retract their claws, they shed their claws less easily and arthritis in their elbows ( really common) makes them more reluctant to scratch.
Several times a week I clip the claws of cats belonging to mortified owners where they have grown into the pads. I have never thought that an owner is neglecting their cat and often it has started a discussion which leads to effective treatment of many geriatric health conditions.

cozietoesie Wed 02-Mar-16 21:25:12

Thanks for that, Lone. It will be reassuring to many people who have older cats. smile

StillMedusa Thu 03-Mar-16 00:02:15

We had the same recently. Our oldest girl Portia is 16 and decided this winter that she was too old to go all. I took her for a check up as she was also throwing up more than normal (always a puker..she's a long hair and won't let us brush her, she's a prickly cat!) and asked if her claws needed doing. They did sad
The vet did suggest we could do this at home... then a few bleeding fingers later agreed that she was indeed a feisty beastie grin and we should just keep an eye on them and bring her in every so often. I have noticed that her claws don't retract like they used to... generally as she uses them on me at least once a day (I love her... she has cattitude!)

Hell will freeze over before she lets us brush her! In fact if she every does I will rush her to the vets convinced she is dying!

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