Post 1215: fire alarms, veterinarians, and lots of stress…

Caturday turned out to be an adventure, to clean it up for general audiences! The fire alarms (85 dB) in my apartment started going off after I made an omelette for breakfast. It took most of the day to end this ordeal of alarms going off – manually stopping the alarms – alarms going off again in ten minutes.

It’s hard to say which of us was more stressed, the kitty boys or me. They, however, didn’t get to say really blasphemous and naughty words to try to make the stress go away! Nope. They were perfect gentlecats! (So I gave them some kitty treats ~ twice.)

See how Dougy’s left eye is swollen? Conjunctivitis.111916-dougys-sick-eye

As mentioned this week, Andy and Dougy have been fighting over the recliner. It was beginning to concern me because it seemed Dougy was the main instigator. Then I noticed his left eye…. I tried to get him in to see his veterinarian Friday afternoon, but he was gone. I eventually got a call from one of the other veterinarians (the new guy), and we decided Dougy should come in anytime Saturday (Caturday, rather) if the eye looked bad still. It did, and I called to let the clinic know Dougy was coming in for an examination.

The new veterinarian impressed me with his thoroughness, his compassion, and his interest in Dougy and his problem. I thought the new veterinarian was easily as good as the boys’ regular veterinarian, something that encourages me in case I have no alternative but to use another one instead of my preferred one. Yes, the new guy is just fine! (Dougy was good with him as well.)

I’ve put these in Dougy’s eyes when he had problems years ago.111,916-dougys-eyedrops-say 

So Dougy has an eye drop prescription that I give him twice a day for five days. Lucky kitty! (Lucky me! Doctoring two kitties!)

So, when I came back from the veterinarian’s, the alarm was blasting off. Poor Andy! No knowing how long he endured that racket! I picked him up and cuddled and talked calmly to him. Later, I gave him that second helping of treats I mentioned earlier. He earned it! 

I called the landlord and calmly (um… “tersely and with menace”) explained the toll the alarms were putting on the kitties and me, how my physical limitations made the process of poking them with the broom handle physically stressful, how I was thinking of moving into a motel with the kitties till the problem was fixed (and charging it to the landlord….!), etc., etc., etc. I plastered it on thick and specifically! There was no way I intended to stay in that apartment all weekend until the maintenance person on duty during the week came to work Monday.

Andy “hid” from the racket here and on the bath mat by the shower. Poor kitty!111916-andy-in-shadows

So, a new maintenance person was sent over. I think he figured the problem out. One of the alarms was apparently defective. It triggered all of the other alarms to activate. Also, he discerned that the problem might also be dust on the units. He used an electric leaf blower to blow them clean! After this treatment and the removal of the one he suspected was defective, the alarms stayed off. It’s been nearly two hours since he left, with no reoccurrence of the alarms.

Oh, yes. Since the treatments began on Dougy’s left eye, there’s been peace in the house. It seems he was cranky because of his eye. At least I hope that’s so! 

42 thoughts on “Post 1215: fire alarms, veterinarians, and lots of stress…

  1. Poor ole Dougy. A sore eye is awful and not being able to see properly is the pits. I’m glad he was good with his meds. You didn’t say much so I figured everything went well. I know how he feels…I get cranky when I hurt a lot. What a Caturday with the alarms going off. I hate those high pitched screeches. The boys must have been beside themselves. Hopefully, tomorrow will be quieter.


    • The alarm problem got “fixed” that morning after AI called the landlord and said I wouldn’t spend the weekend turning that alarm off every 10 minuutes because I was going to take my cats and me to a motel and charge it to the landlord. I made the call when the alarm was blaring for a point of reference to why I was unhappy! She had a guy come over, he established that on alarm specifically caused the problem. He disconnected it and is returning today, Monday, to replace it.

      As for Dougy, he isn’t a good boy when it comes to medicine, as I note in today’s blog, though he does OK when I use the kitty burrito technique and wrap him in a towel.

  2. That alarm does sound awful and poor Andy to have to listen to it when you were not home. Glad it is fixed. I hope Dougy’s eye heals quickly. Did the vet put those drops in that you can see when they turn out the lights and turn on a special light? That always amazes me.

    • No, though I’ve seen that done – on Dougy – and it’s used when there is some cloudiness, one indication of a bacterial infection. Dougy’s eye does look a bit better, though we are only halfway through the treatment, which will end Wednesday night.

    • Thanks! It looks like Wednesday will be the first day the three of us have no obligations. It’s grooming day for the kitty boys, which always starts with me stressed because I have two cats to catch!

  3. Oh boy,what a day. You certainly gave it color, even with the editing. My imagination and personal vocabulary in similar circumstances filled in the blanks. Thank goodness that you got good results from the vet and the maintenance man and Dougy is doing better. (Well both Dougys and Andy actually)

    • I did make sure to make my call for help with the alarm when the alarm was blaring in the background. Pretty effective. That plus the threat to charge them for the motel room my cats and I were going to go to rather than listen to that racket all weekend helped.

      As for the veterinarian, the good service I got is typical of that clinic, one reason I go to that veterinarian. Plus, that’s the clinic where the boys have gone since they were kittens. I like their regular veterinarian a lot because he is an excellent small animal doctor, Andy and Dougy respond well to him, and the staff there are very good with the kitties.

    • I try, though I am mad at myself for not getting Dougy to the veterinarian when I first noticed the swelling. The fact that it swelled then subsided, swelled then subsided threw me off the trail to seeking help for Dougy. Anyway, he’s halfway through the treatment, and I think it’s starting to look better!

  4. Poor kitties and you of course. Glad to hear Dougy is improving with the eyedrops. We have had problems with our smoke alarms too and at some point had to remove one of them as it kept going off. Dogs, of course, don’t like it either.

    • It was just the way to start the weekend, eh?! Always on a day the people who know how to fix it are unavailable! Fortunately, the guy they sent over was clever enough to figure out a temporary fix. I printed out a manual for the alarm (since he didn’t have one over at the maintenance shop…!) and offered to look up other manuals on the Internet and print them out for him since it is ridiculous to expect people to fix things but not provide them with reference materials that can save them time, mistakes, and effort.

        • The maintenance guy returned the alarm this morning a bit after 7:30, and it hasn’t blasted off yet! I am cautiously optimistic that it is fixed. One way I could test it would be to roast some coffee beans….

          • I have enough beans roasted for the moment, so I tried fixing toast and scrambled eggs, both of which have set the dang thing off in past.

            One thing that he did that I think probably helped but that had never been done since I moved here in November 2004 was blow the dust off all the units.

            It isn’t something I was aware of needing to be done annually, but that I learned once he gave me the brand and model number so I could pull up a users manual for the dang thing. He was unaware of this need as well, so we both learned a useful thing that will help me, the renter, and him, the maintenance guy trying to figure out why a renter is having issues with the fire alarms.

          • He used an electric leaf blower! The user manual suggested using a vacuum cleaner with the hose connected to the exhaust so you had a blower. Or something like that.

    • You might be right! Dougy’s treatment ends Wednesday night. He’s still trusting to some degree, but will be less so as the week goes on, I’m sure! Andy and I have a little game going where I stay ahead of him, then he figures out how I catch him. Then I have to learn a new trick. Mostly, I catch him eventually because he has become more used to me petting and holding him, which he likes! What that does for me is he doesn’t know if I’m trying to catch him or pet him. When he hesitates and doesn’t immediately run from me, I have me a trapped cat! LOL!

    • Yesterday (Sunday) was very pleasant indeed, though I had dialysis Sunday instead of Monday because of a schedule change needed to let everyone have Thursday off for the Thanksgiving Day holiday here in the USA. (Dialysis is a pleasant if time consuming process. It takes five hours from preparing me to completing the process.)

  5. My poor boys, the trauma they’ve gone through. Thank goodness they have you to care for them !
    And threatening the landlord… it’s all in the presentation and you pulled that off too – good going, Doug!

    • I try, though I now realize I should have called for an appointment for Dougy earlier. I’m mad at myself for that!

      As for the alarm, though the guy who came over isn’t an electrician, he fixes electronic devices for a hobby. He is very clever that way. I was so pleased to have the alarm problem stopped that I printed up manuals for him for the two models of fire alarms in my apartment so he’d have a reference in the shop in future. I also offered to print up manuals for any other devices he might encounter in work since it is ridiculous to expect maintenance staff to work without references.

        • It comes from working in a factory in the quality department for nearly 36 years. I get very upset with managers (mismanagers I call them) who expect miracles from their employees but don’t give them the tools they need to do the job. It’s a matter of safety, time management, getting a job done correctly the first time, knowing the correct tools to do the job, and building trust and good attitudes with management and the end users of the service. Management here sees things as money spent, so they cut back on staff till they don’t have enough trained people to do the job. Then, they don’t provide them t=with the resources they need to do the job. W. Edward Deming used to say about managers like this that they couldn’t do their job because they don’t know what their job is! I have seen it time and time again!

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