Warning! Be Diligent!


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We feel terrible! Oh my goodness do Kay and I feel absolutely terrible!

Yesterday our Hemi and Me Shell were taken to the vet as they had not eaten for two days and had terrible, horrific breath and drool, starting the day before, that would choke you from the smell.

We are angry that our management did not warn us about things, but the ultimate responsibility lands on us to keep a closer eye on our pets. It seems that on Tuesday the cleaning crews here cleaned out the house across from us and used muriatic acid* to clean the driveway. I saw them using the power washer, but it never dawned on me they would be using hydrochloric acid in the water and let it run into the street. Hemi and Me Shell both are gutter water drinkers....yes, when they have Britta filtered water in five bowls around the house, back and front yards!!...silly cats.

Tuesday night we realized they didn't eat and Hemi drooled a bit, but he is a drooler anyway...rub his belly and you are sure to get a cup full every time, type cat. Wednesday they didn't eat at morning chow, but it's winter, pets often do slow down on food and all they wanted to do was curl up in their favorite hiding spots but both drooled a lot. But Wednesday night Hemi started showing signs of blood around his mouth and even the drain from his eyes...OMG!...so we did a careful investigation to notice ulcerations on their lips, tongues and roof of mouth...it still didn't dawn on us about the acid.

First thing yesterday morning I raced them both to the vet and while talking with her about the possible "exposures to chemicals" I recalled the driveway cleaning and called the office from the vets. Thankfully Fena, the gal who "knows it all" at the office answered and told me the crew had indeed used the acid in the power washer.

We have never been the type to ignore our pets but we also do not race to the vet over every little symptom. However, from here on out, we are not going to wait to do a full check out of their entire bodies when they show signs of not feeling well, that's for sure.

It only takes a moment to thoroughly check out one's pets and while we did "check them", we didn't inspect inside the mouth until the next day...we feel so terrible for making them suffer so.

The GOOD NEWS is after a super shot of anti-biotics, a hydration and vitamin shot, a pain shot etc, they both ate a full bowl worth of pate this morning and Me Shell is fast asleep in my lap as I type. Torval drops for pain and something called Sucralfate...a lesion healing substance that coats the sores has them doing MUCH better this a.m. They are back to the vet on Monday for another check up to be sure no intestinal damage was done.

I could throttle the management office for not warning us about the workers use of acid, to wit, they only said "not our job to notify everyone of our busy day". Okay. So as usual, the people that cause a problem are not to be bothered with telling anyone what they are doing, fine, I get it, corporate schmucks are corporate schmucks at every level. (The owners of our senior development own several 300+ units like ours)

Just wanted to let everyone know about power washer and acid thing as even though I've done it myself, it just didn't ring a bell until at the vet and I never expected workers to just do so without telling people. When we used the muriatic acid at the District, we had to post signs, warning tape and "keep back 200' " notices...guess the private sector is under no such obligation. I'm going to find out.

Blessings Be,

* http://www.ehow.com/how_4778025_use-muriatic-acid-clean-concrete.html

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Much to their dismay, I also spent several hundred dollars beyond the $350/vet to enclose the patio. They no longer have the thrill of adventure, but have a secure patio for which to lounge upon for fresh air and will be great in summer for outside as we'll plant half the 3'x15' dirt area to grass. I hate keeping pets locked up, but in today's world, yes, unfortunately I must relinquish my views to their safety.

The management will throw a fit over my screening in to the fence, (3' gap between patio roof and fence) so sue me. By the time we leave there will prob be a completely diff bunch at office as one turn over already. I have two words for their insensitive nature towards pets...BM!

Blessings of Peace,

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so sorry you guys had to go through all that but good to know everyone is well and happy! and good lord, the management could give a heads up, or reminders when they are using toxic chemicals

there's always something with these guys, isn't it? twenty years ago, I had a lovely little black persian cat named sam.

he loved to sit with me in my studio when I painted...a friend had given me a bag of old oil paints which seemed perfect so I filled my palette, covering it with plastic when I wasn't painting - it took me a day or so of scratching my head, like it didn't look the way I had left it, to realize that sam had been licking the painting AND the palette - he suffered lead poisoning and brain damage, poor little guy but went on to live a good life. I think - I was devastated for my role in that...I wish I had known

sounds like a lovely cat patio you've built for them to enjoy the outdoors safely!

Edited by grateful
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Thanks everyone, it just goes to show nothing is "Free" anymore...was a time we never had to worry about workmen doing crapola like that. I know when I did use that stuff I always warned local folks in the surrounding area.

But yeah, Me Shell is doing great but Hemi, that gots the worst of it, is still quite yuk....but hopefully he'll mend soon.

Take care all,

Blessings of Peace,

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The "Kid's" are doing wonderful and back up to full health and speed...boy are they making up for a week of not being able to eat more than soup! Wow 8# of crunchies gone in 3 days when that was a usual weeks worth between six cats. Hemi ate so much we had a "Tummy present" in the middle of the floor the other morning with his signature on it...he likes to "cover" things so the scratch marks gave him away!!!

They are not liking being confined to the patio, but are least using the newly enclosed area to sun themselves and get fresh air. We keep several planters with different grasses in each one for them to eat and they have started "mowing" for sure!! One, a delicate soft blade wheat grass, is almost down to dirt.

I saw maintenance cleaning a stove in the garage of another vacancy just the other day and they were rinsing industrial grade "Easy-Off" directly into the gutter. The maint guy pulled the "I don't speak English" routine, so I went up to the office. The manager told me that 1.) cats have "no business out and about" 2.) all dogs are to be leashed and walked by owners. 3). If the dog owners let them drink gutter water, "NOT their (office) problem!!"

What if dog - walkers don't SEE the cleaner...like after 4pm, garage door closed, no worker around, but a big puddle of water in the driveway/gutter. I went and put a sign by the water on an orange hazard cone I've had for years. When I got up the next morning, the cone was gone...no one seemed to know where it went. I got it back couple of days ago as it was on the back of the very same maint truck of the workers I tried to talk to. They screamed "That company property! That company property!!" when I took it off the truck...gee, that's funny and walked away with it. Ten minutes later the super shows up pounding on my door asking for "their cone back"...oh you mean the one, like the other 3, with my name and old address inside it? It was obvious to any Sherlock the name had been inside for YEARS and matched the set!! (Faded/blurred/same base and size)

So when I talked to him about the chemicals and gutter water he says "We don't have time to worry about everyone else's animals!" I let him keep the paper sign I printed and made into a cone shape to fit the safety cones that said "Caution! Toxic water!"....amaaaaazingly enough I actually saw one of their cones with the sign on it in front of another unit just yesterday. I printed six more copies, cut them out, laminated both sides, "coned" and folded them flat and gave them to the office for maint this morning. The super just left a bit ago, apologizing for sounding rude the other day and much thanks for our help with the signs.

Every problem needs to be met by both sides of the equation, doesn't matter who or what the issue is. Every pet owner/lover should be diligent, every worker needs to have the appropiate tools to work with, every pet should be safe.....that, is all I'm concerned about, not stopping workers from doing their job or the buck and half it costs for laminate and paper. The $400 vet bill, priceless in that it saved our kids from a horrible death and taught us an invaluable lesson of "freedom for animals" in this modern day world.

Blessings of Peace,

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another example of why you are one who can make lemonade out of the lemons life hands us - instead of rubbing them into paper cuts or sqirting them in your eye....

everyone, pet "owners", neighbors and management just need to THINK a little bit about the consequences of their actions

I am so happy for your family that your little ones are feeling better and have ultimately come through this (emotional and financial) nightmare relatively unscathed!

and thank you for this cautionary tale !

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  • 2 weeks later...

~ So very glad your darlings are doing so much better! :biggrinthumb:

Your solution... time, effort & material to ensure the safety of others... That's one of the reasons you're so loved :wub:

Thank You!!!

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:shy: Awww....you's gals.... :shy:

Well.... thank you. :D

Thanks again for the kind words and support!! I give it back in return as I know how "in tune" and on the ball you gals are too with your aminals and the enormous amount of love, affection and care you give to them as well. Once again, just goes to show that most pet owners* are ragingly cool folks!!

Blessings of Peace,

Al

* (and those that aren't...shame on them!!)

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