does this P/U surgery site look okay??

rubingie

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For history purposes, I will explain: My cat, Titan, is 7 years old and 3 days ago he got P/U surgery because he had another blockage. I say 'another' because he had a history with them, 3 years ago he had a really bad one to the point where he went into kidney failure but he got saved by the doctors. Ever since then, he's been on the 'Purina One Urinary Tract Health' Wet food. All of a sudden though, he had another blockage (not nearly as bad as there was no blood coming out and the kidneys were OK) and we took him to the vet. The doctor gave us two options: catheter or P/U surgery, and we chose the P/U. Now, I have absolutely no idea how it's supposed to look, but on first glance it looked pretty... gruesome? A lot of clots and scabs (?), I got worried.

I tried to prevent my cat from jumping on my bed (he sleeps there all the time), but sometimes I couldn't catch him in time and he would jump up onto my bed without me seeing. I can't put him in his cage otherwise he will take the cone off in the cage. And even then, he took his cone off by himself when I wasn't in the room!! And he licked his wound 2 days into healing...
And then, on top of that... he didn't have diarrhea per-se, but he had very soft poop and, well...I definitely had to wash it off the best I could without rubbing. I'm really worried it might be getting infected now because of that.

CONTENT WARNING NOW CAUSE THERES IMAGES
First image is on Day 2, when I caught him licking. Looks clean cause he licked it.
day2.jpg

Second image is right now.
day3.jpg


Yeah... it looks a lot more icky, but is that how it's...supposed to look?? Or do I need to see a vet because there might be infection? And is there dehiscence also?? I'm not experienced in how stitches look, so I apologize.
For more context, this was a laser surgery, not the normal scalpel one.
 

Tik cat's mum

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Can you send those pictures to the vet. He might be able to tell you if he needs to go in again. I'm sorry I don't know about pu surgery or what it looks like so if you are worried and can't get the vet to look at the pictures take him back to be checked. I'm going to ask Stargirl0623 Stargirl0623 to give her opinion, she went through this not so long ago so hopefully she will be able to advise. Hope your boy is feeling better soon.
 

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It looks good to me. How old is the incision? I have never used a cone on a cat and they have all been fine. Small amounts of blood and clear drainage mixed with a little blood are normal. I am so glad he pooped and is peeing, that is a good sign. you could get some wound spray for cats at your local farm supply store and apply it with a cotton ball,m you could use it for cleaning too. Cats hate spraying sounds so that is why you apply it that way. you can also apply a human antibiotic salve, just make sure it doesn't say it has pain relievers in it. I pray everything goes well for your boy, hope he recovers quickly!
 
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rubingie

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It looks good to me. How old is the incision? I have never used a cone on a cat and they have all been fine. Small amounts of blood and clear drainage mixed with a little blood are normal. I am so glad he pooped and is peeing, that is a good sign. you could get some wound spray for cats at your local farm supply store and apply it with a cotton ball,m you could use it for cleaning too. Cats hate spraying sounds so that is why you apply it that way. you can also apply a human antibiotic salve, just make sure it doesn't say it has pain relievers in it. I pray everything goes well for your boy, hope he recovers quickly!
It's been around four days now since the surgery, so I guess it's too early for me to be worrying...but I can't help it due to everything that's happened beforehand.
Yeah, my cat needs the cone otherwise he'll keep licking and it might reopen stitches (though I do feel bad about it cause he looks so sad with it on lol). I do give him breaks from it though when he wants to sit on my lap and get pets, but if he tries to lick at it again I put it on.
I looked at it again today and it's looking slightly better, I guess I'm just worrying too much because he's never had this happen before and I don't know what looks okay and what doesn't. Thank you for the advice, I will look into the wound spray. And thank you for the prayers. :)
 
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rubingie

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Can you send those pictures to the vet. He might be able to tell you if he needs to go in again. I'm sorry I don't know about pu surgery or what it looks like so if you are worried and can't get the vet to look at the pictures take him back to be checked. I'm going to ask Stargirl0623 Stargirl0623 to give her opinion, she went through this not so long ago so hopefully she will be able to advise. Hope your boy is feeling better soon.
It's okay! I think I would have to go directly-- I don't think there is an online thing to send the pictures to vet directly. Good news though, as of today it's looking slightly better than it was before, so maybe I might have just been overreacting since it's so early in the healing process. I just don't want him to get blocked up again or it to get infected. I do know the signs of infection though like the hot to the touch and stuff like that, they gave me a paper on all of that and none of that has happened as of yet. Thank you for the prayers. :)
 

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It's okay! I think I would have to go directly-- I don't think there is an online thing to send the pictures to vet directly. Good news though, as of today it's looking slightly better than it was before, so maybe I might have just been overreacting since it's so early in the healing process. I just don't want him to get blocked up again or it to get infected. I do know the signs of infection though like the hot to the touch and stuff like that, they gave me a paper on all of that and none of that has happened as of yet. Thank you for the prayers. :)
That's brilliant news thank you for the update :purr:
 

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Hi, I just saw this! My boy went through a PU in September (thread here, I started out worried about his poops and then documented his healing process as we went), and I empathize with you a lot--it's a very stressful procedure for everybody involved, and the recovery can be brutal!

The picture you posted does look about par for the course; my boy's surgical site looked rather grisly for nearly two weeks, until the stitches came out. If you want, I can DM some pictures for comparison. Normally they do eventually form dark clots and heal over; these clots can fall off on their own, or your vet may remove them when it's time for stitches to come out, but you generally don't want to touch them yourself if you can help it. My cat's continued to bleed a little bit every time he used the bathroom for a while, and I was told that's normal. Excessive fresh blood might indicate a popped stitch or injury, though, and should probably see a vet.

I would ask your surgeon if there's an email or something you can use to send pictures in! I was sending mine pictures near-daily to make sure we were on the right track with recovery. I felt bad for bothering them, but was reassured that it IS a major surgery and hard for the layperson to tell what is and isn't normal, so they'd rather tell an owner that everything's fine than have them wait and potentially miss a problem.

Mine also had the loose stools! Lots of following him around with disposable wipes to make sure it didn't end up on the site, gentle patting to avoid disturbing the wound. I was also told by the vet's office that if it got truly dire I could bring him back in to get cleaned up. Putting him on a probiotic helped, but it didn't fully get better until he was off all the meds. When his bumhole got red and irritated I was told to put Vaseline on it to soothe it a bit, and to avoid getting it (or other ointments) directly on the wound. Your vet should be able to advise!

The one thing I can emphasize is that the cone is important, and not up for debate! He may hate it, but he'd hate a revision surgery MUCH more. Even small breaks from it could give him an opening to do some damage, so you want to be very careful on that front. DO NOT LET HIM LICK. The tissue involved is all super delicate and part of the urethra is newly exposed so you want it healed past where you normally would for a surgery, since it has to stand up to a rough tongue. Repairing a PU after a cat damages their own stitches is a nightmare, because there's just not a lot of sturdy tissue left to work with; you need to do everything in your power to avoid a situation where a repair is required. I think my boy had his cone for nearly a month, until the site was no longer pink and fresh!

Again: they may hate the cone, but they'd hate the alternative to it WAY more!

I'm so glad the recovery is going well, and will keep fingers crossed that it continues to be super smooth!
 
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rubingie

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Hi, I just saw this! My boy went through a PU in September (thread here, I started out worried about his poops and then documented his healing process as we went), and I empathize with you a lot--it's a very stressful procedure for everybody involved, and the recovery can be brutal!

The picture you posted does look about par for the course; my boy's surgical site looked rather grisly for nearly two weeks, until the stitches came out. If you want, I can DM some pictures for comparison. Normally they do eventually form dark clots and heal over; these clots can fall off on their own, or your vet may remove them when it's time for stitches to come out, but you generally don't want to touch them yourself if you can help it. My cat's continued to bleed a little bit every time he used the bathroom for a while, and I was told that's normal. Excessive fresh blood might indicate a popped stitch or injury, though, and should probably see a vet.

I would ask your surgeon if there's an email or something you can use to send pictures in! I was sending mine pictures near-daily to make sure we were on the right track with recovery. I felt bad for bothering them, but was reassured that it IS a major surgery and hard for the layperson to tell what is and isn't normal, so they'd rather tell an owner that everything's fine than have them wait and potentially miss a problem.

Mine also had the loose stools! Lots of following him around with disposable wipes to make sure it didn't end up on the site, gentle patting to avoid disturbing the wound. I was also told by the vet's office that if it got truly dire I could bring him back in to get cleaned up. Putting him on a probiotic helped, but it didn't fully get better until he was off all the meds. When his bumhole got red and irritated I was told to put Vaseline on it to soothe it a bit, and to avoid getting it (or other ointments) directly on the wound. Your vet should be able to advise!

The one thing I can emphasize is that the cone is important, and not up for debate! He may hate it, but he'd hate a revision surgery MUCH more. Even small breaks from it could give him an opening to do some damage, so you want to be very careful on that front. DO NOT LET HIM LICK. The tissue involved is all super delicate and part of the urethra is newly exposed so you want it healed past where you normally would for a surgery, since it has to stand up to a rough tongue. Repairing a PU after a cat damages their own stitches is a nightmare, because there's just not a lot of sturdy tissue left to work with; you need to do everything in your power to avoid a situation where a repair is required. I think my boy had his cone for nearly a month, until the site was no longer pink and fresh!

Again: they may hate the cone, but they'd hate the alternative to it WAY more!

I'm so glad the recovery is going well, and will keep fingers crossed that it continues to be super smooth!
Thanks!! Things have been going better since then, his poops have gotten more solid (but not constipation) so I don't think there will be any more messes like that again. He's even gained all his appetite back!
I hope it was okay for me to trim some of the hair around it, he's a long haired cat so some of the hair got kinda.. knotted with blood or ick so I had to cut some of it off (not big clumps). I just didn't want him to feel uncomfortable with hair sticking to it.

An odd thing I've been noticing though is that, well... I have a towel down on the bed where he will lay down so that the ick would be put on the towel (if that makes sense). Recently though he started to...lick the ick off the towel, but I think that's kinda stopped since there's not that much ick coming out as there was before. I just thought it was an odd behavior.

Other than that though, things have been looking better I think. I was probably just paranoid (I have heavy anxiety so that definetly contributed in some way, was worth it though because I got some good advice.) :)
 

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Thanks!! Things have been going better since then, his poops have gotten more solid (but not constipation) so I don't think there will be any more messes like that again. He's even gained all his appetite back!
I hope it was okay for me to trim some of the hair around it, he's a long haired cat so some of the hair got kinda.. knotted with blood or ick so I had to cut some of it off (not big clumps). I just didn't want him to feel uncomfortable with hair sticking to it.

An odd thing I've been noticing though is that, well... I have a towel down on the bed where he will lay down so that the ick would be put on the towel (if that makes sense). Recently though he started to...lick the ick off the towel, but I think that's kinda stopped since there's not that much ick coming out as there was before. I just thought it was an odd behavior.

Other than that though, things have been looking better I think. I was probably just paranoid (I have heavy anxiety so that definetly contributed in some way, was worth it though because I got some good advice.) :)
I'm so glad things are turning around and he's feeling better! Progress with a PU recovery, at least for my boy, was incremental until I looked up one day and realized he was fully back to normal!

As long as you didn't impact the surgical site, I'm sure a haircut was appreciated. My boy was shaved pretty thoroughly when I got him back, and cats are fastidious creatures who like to be clean (probably also why he's trying to clean his own bedding when there's ick on it, poor thing!). I remember midway through his healing I did have to very carefully remove some stray hairs from the wound, too, when the weather turned on us and he started to shed. I imagine it'd be worse with a long-haired cat!

Congrats on making it this far together--I genuinely mean that. This can be an absolutely gruelling recovery for both cat and the person looking after them. I remember two solid weeks of getting up every few hours to administer care, clean him up, and give meds, and I was an emotional wreck for most of it! It was a joke among my friends, I had to drop everything we were doing to check on him every single time my cat needed to pee or poop (at least, until he stopped bleeding and his stool firmed up), and I'm sure they learned more about feline bodily functions than they EVER wanted to.

It sounds like you're handling things over there very well, you're doing a great and attentive job taking care of him, and I'll keep fingers crossed for continued smooth sailing for you both!
 
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rubingie

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I figured I'd give an update since it's been a while. It's been just over 2 weeks now. I still don't take his cone off, but he still gets short breaks to get neck scratches.
Also, the clot fell off by itself, which was said here that it is normal for that to happen. So that's good!
I am cleaning the wound with wipes (of course he hates it because he doesn't like being touched down there) and everything looks good to me so far. It's a far cry from how it looked four days ago, that's for sure. Not as grisly and a lot more clean.
I guess the most I'm worried about is when the stitches will actually dissolve. Do they usually take this long?
 
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rubingie

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I figured I'd give an update since it's been a while. It's been just over 2 weeks now. I still don't take his cone off, but he still gets short breaks to get neck scratches.
Also, the clot fell off by itself, which was said here that it is normal for that to happen. So that's good!
I am cleaning the wound with wipes (of course he hates it because he doesn't like being touched down there) and everything looks good to me so far. It's a far cry from how it looked four days ago, that's for sure. Not as grisly and a lot more clean.
I guess the most I'm worried about is when the stitches will actually dissolve. Do they usually take this long?
Oh, by four days ago I meant four days after the surgery not four days ago like. on the 21st of January. I'm bad with words.
 

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I figured I'd give an update since it's been a while. It's been just over 2 weeks now. I still don't take his cone off, but he still gets short breaks to get neck scratches.
Also, the clot fell off by itself, which was said here that it is normal for that to happen. So that's good!
I am cleaning the wound with wipes (of course he hates it because he doesn't like being touched down there) and everything looks good to me so far. It's a far cry from how it looked four days ago, that's for sure. Not as grisly and a lot more clean.
I guess the most I'm worried about is when the stitches will actually dissolve. Do they usually take this long?
That's great news, and congrats on the healing! I'm glad he's doing a lot better. The turnaround when the clot comes off is absolutely wild to see, and I'm relieved to hear all is coming along nicely over there.

I wouldn't worry too much about the stitches! My boy still had nearly all his still intact at the two week check-up, since it's not a part of the body that moves around a whole bunch and the vet removed them at that point instead of waiting for them to dissolve because they were starting to irritate his skin. If they're not bothering your boy, I strongly suspect it's fine to leave them be, but that's a question for your vet to answer for sure!
 
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