Just this last week, Monarch began retaining fluid. This is a side effect of the liver not yet functioning. During the surgery (almost 4 weeks ago), the surgeon placed a ring around the liver shunt. That ring slowly constricts for 6 weeks until the shunt is completely shut off. So we have 2 weeks for the liver to figure out what its job is and to start doing its job.
The side effect to a big belly is it is harder for Monarch to move around. She has stopped going up the stairs in my house, she even resists climbing the two steps up from the back yard into my house. She also has become even more picky about eating. I can tell that she is hungry, but her tummy hurts and she must think that it was something that she ate, so she often won't eat the same food twice.
Thursday, Monarch weighed 22 lbs. I would bet that at least 2 is the fluid in her abdomen.