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June 22, 2010 / Jenny Ann Fraser

My Cat Has Insomnia

For the past couple of weeks this blog has seemed to come to a near stop. I’m happy to report that I’m back, I think.  More or less anyway.

I haven’t mentioned much about work over these past couple of months, because there wasn’t much to write about.  I’ve been layed-off since the beginning of April because I have a seasonal job, and there hasn’t been a lot of work to be had.  I wasn’t terribly worried about this, as I was working part-time doing wardrobe work on a film, and I knew that there would be projects starting up soon.

I became slightly worried when I applied for Employment Insurance a couple of weeks ago and realized that due to a paperwork error I made on the film,  I now owe Employment Insurance most of what I earned in that 5 weeks.

I did a quick re-check of my budget for the month and figured out that I could just make it… as long as I don’t eat too much or have any fun.  I’m used to this.  I hate it, but I’ve been through worse and I will be back to full-time work for at least part of July and August.

Then, my cat got sick.

It was a Friday night and a friend of mine was visiting.  Angus was unusually hyper-friendly. He’s fussy about visitors, but this night he was Mr. Affectionate, and just wouldn’t go away.  It wasn’t until my friend left that I realized that he was trying to tell me something. My poor guy was very uncomfortable and just couldn’t settle down.   He had a sleepless night and so did I.  I didn’t know that cat’s could get insomnia.

The next day he was no better. Although he was eating and somewhat playful he couldn’t rest. After three calls to the vet, we decided that he could wait until Monday. Clearly he wasn’t in any danger or great pain, but something was definitely wrong.

I used to have 3 cats. Angus’ best friend Yower had to go to kitty heaven after he lost his mind and attacked me. Then, he destroyed the screen door and attempted to kill the cat next door. When I tried to catch him he went after me again.  I’ll always have the scar on my nose dangerously close to my left eye to remember that fateful night…

My rescued Persian, Hamish died two years ago after a long life, most of which was spent hiding in the closet. He’d pretty much had enough of Angus who is the wildest cat I’ve ever had. Angus can be a bit overwhelming.

Still, Angus is the only one that I’ve had from a kitten, and he is truly my baby. I’ve put him through a bit in his life.  I can’t always be home to give him all of the attention that he needs, but I’d pretty much have to quit my job and be a stay-at-home cat mom for that.  At least he has that for part of the year, and quite frankly he is far from neglected. That said, I’m sure he’d tell you a different story sometimes.  (Like right now as I’m writing this. He’s ticked-off that I won’t go to bed.)

My appointment at the vet was at noon.  It’s a good thing, because I was a wreck all morning and I don’t think I would have lasted if it had been later.  Apparently, my anxiety disorder still has the power to rear its ugly head when I’m not looking.

I wasn’t physically ill because I thought that he was going to die or something. No, I was a train-wreck because I knew that my baby was going to be scared.  Angus is Mr. Tougher-Than-Nails inside the confines of his home, but having never really been anywhere else, it’s a different story once he get’s into his carrying case.

I’m not sure how I survived sitting in the waiting room hearing him scream from the end of the hall as it took 3 technicians to hold all 8.8 lbs of him down to take a blood sample.  I knew that they weren’t hurting him. But I also knew that he didn’t know that.

He survived, and I gave all of my grocery, bills and part of my rent money to the vet…And we still don’t know what’s wrong.

Fortunately, though there is definitely a problem with poor Angus, I can tell by the way he is catapulting himself off the back of the couch every morning that he is feeling much better. We’ve ruled out Diabetes and Hyper-Thyroid  leaving possible kidney disease.This might not be too serious… but I can’t get the test done until I find some cash.

The day after the visit to the vet, I wake up with a slipped disk.  So much for 21.5.800 yoga.

Since I couldn’t sit and my brain is on fire with all that is going on, writing was pretty much out too.

The Chiropractor was able to give me some relief, but unlike the other 20 or so times this has happened, it wasn’t enough.  I had to break down and get a prescription for some anti-inflammatory medication, which is why I haven’t yet made it back to the vet with a urine sample.  (I was SO looking forward to that!) Yes, I had to put myself first since I kind of need to be able to walk.

Of course, I got a call to start working last Wednesday… but didn’t make it in until today.

I’m feeling much better now.  My hip is still crooked, which is starting to make my knee hurt, but I can function again. I’ve done this so many times, that I pretty much know what to do.

As for Angus, he’s quite fine, though still under-weight and drinking like a fish. He thinks he is in heaven. A whole week of my constant  undivided attention and a lot of cuddling in bed, since that is where I spent most of last week. This might be close to his perfect life since he doesn’t have the option of having a friend to beat up daily. While I would feel better with a diagnosis, he’s quite happy with right now.

As long as I stay away from the tiny area on his neck that they had to shave to draw blood, the whole trauma is forgotten.

In the meantime, I am back working as of today. Not full-time yet, but it sure feels good to have somewhere to go in the morning.



Leave a Comment
  1. Viv / Jun 22 2010 1:26 am

    Life is sometimes too complicated and then our pets make it more so.
    I have had a few cats over the years; Clara, our rescued longhair was sweet and affectionate with people but hated other cats and went senile over the 8 years we had her.
    At night I can guarantee that the more I need an undisturbed night, the more one of the animals will fuss all night. One or the other cat will cry to come in/go out of our room, scratch at the door or the dog will be restless.
    I do hope Angus makes a full recovery and lets you get some peace too.

    • jennyannfraser / Jun 22 2010 8:39 am

      Thanks Viv!
      Yes, our animals do demand a lot! But where would we be without them?

  2. Emily Jane / Jun 22 2010 7:43 am

    Oh my gosh, I’m sorry – I hope you both feel heaps better soon ❤

    • jennyannfraser / Jun 22 2010 8:40 am

      Thanks Emily, I’m sure we’ll both be better soon!


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