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RIP Shadow - God had other ideas.

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  • RIP Shadow - God had other ideas.

    jUPDATE: This morning she showed signs of neurologic ataxia. Internist did a sonogram and found several masses in her spleen. Prognosis was very poor, so I made the hard decision, and held her in my arms while she received her injection. She growled at me right up to the end as if to say 'what took you so long?'

    She was a true queen among cats. Born in a school barn, she was a tough, tiny little thing that could jump from roof joist to joist without losing her balance, was a wicked hunter, hated all other animals with a passion, and presided over her barn with an iron fist. From the time she came to us as a just weaned kitten, she proclamined loud and clear that 'she was the boss', but she followed me everywhere, even jumped on the back of a horse once to be with me while I was riding.

    God I'll miss my little 4 legged Shadow.


    My 14 year old cat suddenly took ill. Took her to the vet this morning, her RBC counts were down to only 10% of what she should normally have. Test for FIV, Leuk, organ failure all good, so he thinks most likely cause may be a blood parasite. Her spleen is destroying her RBC's as fast as she's making them. The good news is she IS making them. Gave her a steroid shot and some antibiotics, but told me that she'll either begin to recover in the next 24-48 hrs or not make it through the weekend.

    The thing is, she seems to still have some fight left in her, but she's also not eating or drinking, and I don't give her much chance if we can't get some calories or fluids into her. Does anyone have any ideas of what I can get into her nutritionally to give her a fighting chance? They gave her IV fluids in the vet office today, but I really need to get something into her at home. KMR maybe?
    Last edited by Trevelyan96; Jun. 3, 2013, 06:06 PM. Reason: Update
    Lowly Farm Hand with Delusions of Barn Biddieom.
    Witherun Farm
    http://witherun-farm.blogspot.com/

  • #2
    First Jingles & AO then next ``` chicken baby food ? in a mini syringe .. get at CVS

    First Jingles & AO for Shadow !!!!

    ((hugs))

    Breathe in Breathe out ~

    and plan your work and work your plan ~

    Check with vet or ? but
    thought chicken baby food was the "recommend" once for an ill cat ?

    use a mini syringe from pet store for feeding baby rabbits ....


    Jingle Jingle Jingle & AO ~ AO ~ AO ~ Always Optimistic ~

    Come on Shadow ``` Fight Fight Fight !

    Clam juice for hydration `` grocery specialty section ~

    Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "

    Comment


    • #3
      Big jingles coming your way. It sounds like you're describing either a primary or secondary immune mediated hemolytic anemia (can find no underlying cause, or can be secondary to infections, blood parasites, cancer). Kitties that are severely anemic are just weak and don't want to eat. Doxycycline is one of the most commonly used antibiotics for what you're describing and that can do a number on their GI tract as well - maybe some anti-nausea, antacid or appetite stimulant medications from your vet would help?

      If hospitalizing her for a blood transfusion is an option that would be the best thing to get her back on her feet and give her time to see if she'll respond to the medications.
      Last edited by In The Gate; Jun. 2, 2013, 04:32 PM.

      Comment


      • #4
        I have no idea if it is appropriate, but i have been giving that high calorie paste in a tube to some puppies. I wonder if that would be ok?
        www.ncsporthorse.com

        Comment


        • #5
          Jingles for your poor kitty!!!

          Why dont you do a blood transfusion until you get a real diagnosis? Im really shocked that your vet wouldnt suggest this with a cat with such a low packed cell volume!

          I would be extremely frightened having my cat at home over the weekend without having a reasonable PCV. Cats should be anywhere from 25-45 (generally), if its really 10% of that (2.5 she would be dead, and 4.5% she would be on the brink!) she is likely very critically ill. Blood transfusion should buy her more time until you figure out whats going on, or for medications to kick in. Cats generally accept transfusions well and arent terribly costly.

          Have you had an abdominal ultrasound done? How were her platelets and any telltale signs of IMHA? We dont usually see blood parasites in the older kitties as much as younger ones, but not to say it cant happen.

          Also, if your cat is nauseous please dont feed her. It can create a food adversion. If you dont want to euthanize her and want to get her better, hospitalization for blood transfusion and enteral feeding is probably your best chance. I wouldnt worry about fatty liver or anything at this point, if you felt like barfing you wouldnt want food shoved down your throat. If she is taking the hand feedings willingly, thats one thing...but any signs of gagging, drooling or adversion means you should really stop.

          I totally understand if you dont want to do advanced treatments, not trying to come off like you should - just letting you know that there ARE other options out there than letting her not make it through the weekend IF you wanted to give her best chances. Jingles

          Comment


          • #6
            Jingles for Shadow from S. Calif.!!!

            Comment


            • #7
              Jingling for Shadow and echoing ZuZu's AO

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                Originally posted by In The Gate View Post
                Big jingles coming your way. It sounds like you're describing either a primary or secondary immune mediated hemolytic anemia (can find no underlying cause, or can be secondary to infections, blood parasites, cancer). Kitties that are severely anemic are just weak and don't want to eat. Doxycycline is one of the most commonly used antibiotics for what you're describing and that can do a number on their GI tract as well - maybe some anti-nausea, antacid or appetite stimulant medications from your vet would help?

                If hospitalizing her for a blood transfusion is an option she that may be very helpful to get her back on her feet and give her time to see if she'll respond to the medications.
                The vet gave her a steroid shot and a dose of clindamycin hcl, and sent me home with more to give her every 12h. He said "No Stress at all" He mentioned a blood transfusion when he told me about her CBC, but then he backed off on that. I'm not sure exactly why except that maybe he did not think she needed it because she is regenerating and the steroid shot and antibiotics will break the cycle and allow her to bring up her own levels?

                She hasn't shown any signs of nausea, but, then again she hasn't been eating either. I just gave her a few droppers of tuna oil. She did not want it at first, but just took a little bit more of it willingly, and seems to have perked up a tiny bit in the last hour or so.

                It seems to me that treating her for the underlying cause won't do her much good if she starves to death.

                Reading this, I just realized that I'm an idiot, and I'm off to call the emergency vet center to see where I can take her for a transfusion.
                Lowly Farm Hand with Delusions of Barn Biddieom.
                Witherun Farm
                http://witherun-farm.blogspot.com/

                Comment


                • #9
                  Morning Jingles & AO for Shadow and her mom ~

                  Morning Jingles & AO for Shadow and her mom ~
                  Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Update on Shadow - Good News and Thank you COTHERS!!!

                    Thanks to the excellent advice here, I took her to the emergency clinic last night. She was literally at death's door, with a PCV of 8! They started her transfusion immediately, she needed 2 bags. Her temp also started dropping when she got to the clinic, so they put a heat blanket on her, etc. I left at 2 AM and they told me I can call as often as I like, but the general rule with them is 'no news is good news'.

                    At 9 AM this morning her counts were within normal range, and she's perked enough to be her usual very pissy self, already bit a tech. They are monitoring her PBC every 2 hours. They want to keep her until tomorrow to have the internal med specialist have a look at her in the morning. But they said unless her counts drop significantly by 5 PM tonight, we can consider her on the mend.

                    The emergency clinic staff last night was wonderful, and they were also baffled as to why my (former) vet did not send her immediately for a transfusion yesterday morning, as they said standard protocol is to do a transfusion for anything below 20, and she was around 10 when he saw her. When all tallied up, the bill will be about 4K, but well worth it to know that we did not let her die needlessly.

                    I am definitely changing small animal vets. He sent her home to die when all he had to say to me was "she needs a blood transfusion to live" and he also prescribed the wrong medication for what we all suspect is the underlying problem! I'm not waiting for strike 3 with this guy.
                    Lowly Farm Hand with Delusions of Barn Biddieom.
                    Witherun Farm
                    http://witherun-farm.blogspot.com/

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I'm so glad your kitty is feeling better. I figured the anemia wasn't quite as bad as what you wrote or your vet had offered a transfusion and it wasn't possible so didn't want to push. I'm shocked with a Hct of 8-10% he didn't flat out tell you she'll die without a transfusion - no amount of supportive care at home is going to fix that! Having her evaluated by an internist tomorrow is exactly the right thing to do - they'll help you look and make sure there isn't a serious underlying problem that triggered this.

                      Good luck and I hope she's home soon!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Thanks for update ~ Jingles & AO continue for Shadow ~

                        Thanks for updating ~

                        Jingles & AO continue for Shadow ~

                        Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Good for you!!! Im so happy your cat is doing well. Hopefully the internist will find something easily managable. We do cat transfusions on a regular basis, and it boggles my mind why vets dont recommend it to clients as an option. I too would not return to your original vet.

                          Hopefully your cat will perk up and eat better now. I know people like to feed them when they dont eat, because its something WE can do for them. Blood is more important, so glad you were able to provide this for her!!! Jingle jingle jingle for further good news.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            RIP ~ Shadow ~ knowing you will always be loved and remembered ~

                            I'm So sorry about your loss


                            RIP Shadow ~ knowing you will always be loved and remembered ~


                            ((hugs))
                            Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Your title update is so eloquent. Hugs to you. Godspeed to little Shadow.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Shadow will still be following you. It will just be harder to see her.
                                If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.
                                Desmond Tutu

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I just saw this. I'm so sorry; God speed, Shadow, and hugs to you.
                                  Mystic Owl Sporthorses
                                  www.mysticowlsporthorses.com

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Rest in peace little Shadow. So sorry to read this update, but as you said, God had other plans for her.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Flurry84 View Post
                                      Rest in peace little Shadow. So sorry to read this update, but as you said, God had other plans for her.

                                      Im so sorry for your loss. You did well not only by her, but for yourself too. You educated yourself and made a decision based on grave prognosis. You probably would have felt horrible if she had died at home from something treatable like a blood parasite.

                                      You were her angel. You gave her hope and when hope wasnt fair, you gave her dignity.

                                      RIP little Shadow.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I am so sorry. Godspeed, Shadow.

                                        Comment

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