hooray!

I think that my biggest challenge with Boris and Natasha has been trying to give them meds while also teaching them that human contact is the best thing ever. Being picked up is hard to get used to, and having it end with being held still against your will to have eyedrops plunked into your eyes and a syringe with icky stuff forced into your mouth is just plain rude. They hate it. They fight it. I have to wrap them partially in a little burp cloth to keep from getting clawed *too* badly. And yes, they still need meds. Their little eyes are goopy and red, with the inner lid showing quite a bit sometimes. They sneeze frequently, spraying wet little droplets on me. And poor Natasha has developed some terrible diarrhea. I had to put chux pads down all over the floor, sofa, playpen, and condo so i would have a little less cleanup to do (which had been constant).

I did find a little trick to make it a little easier for them to tolerate me. I keep their food and water in the condo, and that's the only place they get them. I keep the condo doors latched except for one, right by the sofa. When they both go in, if it's anywhere near time for meds (these are twice daily), i stealthily but quickly close the one open door so they are locked in. Then I can prep their meds without them running to hide and then carefully take one out, do the meds, release that one, and repeat with the other. I like this system because it's not teaching them anything negative, like that it's not safe to go to the litter boxes, which are in the playpen, or to be near me (because I never grab them to do meds while they are just out and about in the room).

The hooray for today is that I had to restart the meds after a few days off and had worried that they would backslide into fearfulness after we'd really gotten to a good place with snuggling, petting, and approaching. They've stopped being hand-shy, pretty much, and they both climb on me for snuggles and snuggle up next to me while I'm working. I didn't want that to stop. But I gave them their first doses this morning, and almost immediately after, they were both purring and approaching me for pets. Hooray! I can medicate them properly now (ten days!) and get them well again for surgery so they can find their forever home (or homes).

And yes, that's really the biggest challenge for me: letting them go at the end. I do get so attached.