Seamus

Born 26 June 2007

Seamus portrait Pet names: Schmoo, BooBoo, Tiny

Seamus is a small cat with the quietest purr I've ever heard, an almost inaudible whisper. He likes to sleep at the foot of the bed where we can't reach him but he's still close to us. He loves wee caverns underneath a blanket, duvet or inside someone's jumper, and is also very fond of cardboard boxes. Despite his small size, he can manage a spectacular, almost 6 ft vertical jump, which taught me never to hang anything across the top of a door.

Generally, Seamus is a very quiet cat - unlike Gizmo, he barely makes a sound at dinnertime. He sometimes enjoys serenading the household at night, but only once all the lights are off and his audience is completely silent. He used to sit in the bathtub for his evening concerts; Kevin reckoned he liked the way the "singing" was amplified in the bathroom. Sitting in the middle of the tub he looked like a wee sailor on his ship, so this habit earned him the nickname "Captain Bathtub".

Seamus is an incredibly fussy eater and will refuse things that are normally considered treats, such as pure chicken breast. Fortunately, he (usually) accepts the Royal Canin Sensitivity wet food we feed Gizmo for medical reasons. He tends to eat very little at a time and will often require another "go" or two later to finish a 50g portion. We have to be ready to scoop up the bowl as soon as he leaves to prevent Gizmo from slurping up the leftovers in an instant.

Seamus tends to get inflamed gums and tartar on his teeth, so the boys get crunchy kibble for treats and we sometimes brush their teeth with special pet toothbrushes and fish-flavour toothpaste (we ought to do it daily but none of us enjoy the experience). I can almost *hear* you laughing now and thinking I'm a crazy cat lady, but gum inflammation is a genuine health problem which can cause severe gingivitis and loss of teeth. Seamus has had to have his teeth scaled at the veterinary clinic on several occasions. This is a surgical procedure so he is required to spend a whole day at the clinic, due to the full anaesthetic. He arrives home traumatised and gets hissed at by Gizmo for smelling strange.

Seamus has coughed occasionally all his life, but in early 2011 it seemed to be getting worse and concerned me enough to have it checked out. The initial treatment with a steroid injection stopped the coughing for a few months, but a later injection with antibiotics did not have any effect. After a full exam and lung X-ray he was diagnosed with feline asthma. Bronchodilator pills did not help in the slightest, so in November 2011 we began treating him twice daily with steroids using an inhaler called an AeroKat. He may require this medication for the rest of his life, although I am hopeful that if we move to a house with wooden floors and he has access to a garden, we might try weaning him off the drugs to see if his condition resolves itself by such a change in environment.

These things aside, he appears quite happy and has an adorable kitten appearance as he has barely grown since he was about 7 months old. He's worth the trouble... most of the time.

Seamus on the balcony in summer Seamus on the balcony in summer Seamus on the balcony in summer Seamus on blanket Seamus 2009 Seamus 2009 Seamus 2009 Seamus 2009 Seamus 2009 Seamus' twice-daily asthma inhaler routine, June 2012 Seamus getting his teeth brushed, June 2012 Seamus getting his teeth brushed, June 2012