Bear had his checkup for his UTI this past week. Before giving me the results, the vet asked if had noticed any improvements. I gave her the report: the UTI symptoms seem better, but other things are off. Things unrelated.
She gave me a look and I explained that his back end is worse. He has the will to walk and jump up on things and run up stairs, but his back legs refuse to cooperate.
First, the good news. His UTI is much better. Still there, but much improved over last time. The reason it isn’t clear yet is either it was just really bad and is taking awhile to clear up, or another organism which is resistant to the antibiotic is still alive. She decided to keep him on the same one to see if it is the first reason and do another follow-up in two weeks. She did warn, if any symptoms come back and he gets worse to call right away, as that would be an indication it is a different organism.
Now the not-so-good news. She checked his back legs and agreed they are a lot worse than they were two weeks ago. She even watched as he stumbled walking around. She did a few things and determined he was slowing down and not moving around much, most likely from the pain of arthritis. This lack of movement is causing muscle loss. She verified Bear knows exactly where his back paws are and what position they are in, he just doesn’t have the strength to move them all the time. Not much to do to fix it, because its just another symptom of old age. I’m now considering Bear “frail” in his old age.
Not being able to fix it doesn’t mean we are giving up on him. Instead, she instructed me to use Tramadol to dose him so he feels better from the arthritis and will hopefully move around more. She did warm not to give him too much as that will make him sleepy. And we don’t want him sleepy, we want him moving. Although, I can give him more at night – hoping it knocks him out so he gets lots of rest and then feels like moving again in the morning.
He got plenty of exercise after his vet visit. As usual, I took him to the office and he loved it. He’s getting pretty used to being there and so many people came to say hi. To him, not me.