Kittehzes! & Pets


#302

Visited him this morning (what a fiasco, 90 minutes, at least 60 of which was waiting for people to come talk to me).

Overnight, blood panel came down to 100% normal levels. Which means his kidney function is perfectly fine and the elevated levels were due to dehydration. And he can come home.

But that also means that it’s the enlargement/inflammation of his small intestine that was causing him to not eat or drink. A proper biopsy will be close to $2K and if it’s cancer, removing the affected section will be another $4K-$6K surgery but it’s not curable.

Best case, it’s an acute irritable bowel condition and steroids can help get that under control and bring his appetite back. Worst case, it’s the Big C and steroids will help with the inflammation and appetite. Either way, we’re looking at pain management and getting him back to a somewhat more normal version of himself, but it’s very likely that we’re only talking about buying a few more months.


#303

I’m sorry that his prognosis isn’t great. :frowning: I’d tell you to give him the best life you can while you have him, but I’m pretty sure you’re going to do that already!


#304

Is there a reason your local vet can’t do the intestinal biopsy? I know that we are able to do that at our facility. They of course would want him in iv fluids and antibiotics during it, but it would be more cost effective. I would warn you, though, that there is a possibility that they will get in there, visually see what the problem is, and call you with an update and for a decision on euthanasia (if a widespread cancer, for example). Alternatively, if he starts eating and acting ok, you can always choose to treat the cat and not the condition. This may involve special nutrient-dense food and giving him fluids under the skin a few times a week to help keep him hydrated. You guys just need to decide how much knowledge you want and what you will do with it. If you fknd out its cancer but decide not to treat, but rather hospice him, will it tear you up emotionally to withhold treatment? Or maybe the treatment is worse than the disease? No matter what, everyone has to be onboard. And any vet who gives you difficulty about seeking or not seeking treatment should be looked at with some suspicion; we help guide with knowledge, not issue ultimatums. Good luck…it’s a difficult process no matter what the decision and outcome.


#305

The last 48 hours have been a whirlwind with all of this going on, so we haven’t talked to our local vet yet. The one he’s at now offered to do a fine needle biopsy but there’s no guarantee that they’ll get the sample that they want. A fully-invasive biopsy they said would be in the neighborhood of $2K (again, not the local vet) and a 48-hour wait to get results from Cornell.

I would warn you, though, that there is a possibility that they will get in there, visually see what the problem is, and call you with an update and for a decision on euthanasia (if a widespread cancer, for example)

It doesn’t sound like it’s widespread, based on the ultrasound they did yesterday. But having to make an EOL decision while he’s on the table is a situation I desperately want to avoid. The doctor I saw this morning was pretty straightforward about where he is now (based on what we know w/o a biopsy), what the costs would be for further surgical options, and that we’re talking about adding months, not years.

He was acting OK today when I visited him, but he hasn’t been eating much; then again, he’s been in a strange place for 2 nights and if he’s got bowel inflammation he probably doesn’t feel like eating.

If you fknd out its cancer but decide not to treat, but rather hospice him, will it tear you up emotionally to withhold treatment? Or maybe the treatment is worse than the disease?

Minimum of one, possibly two, abdominal surgeries (or chemo) on a 14 year old cat for a disease that can’t really be cured. My goal is to minimize his pain and I doubt that putting him through those procedures is going to have that effect. I don’t want to completely give up, but I don’t want him to be suffering for 8 months.


#306

Well, we’re home. He was a little “off” for a bit and went off to his hiding spot for a bit but that’s not unexpected. But since he’s gotten comfortable here:

  • He’s had some food
  • Been up & down the basement stairs a few times
  • Jumped up on the backs of both sofas
  • Purred loud enough to be heard 8-10 feet away
  • Let me take the bandage from his IV off his leg without flinching
  • (most importantly) jumped up on the couch, curled up next to me, and let me rub his belly

I won’t really feel OK until he jumps up on the bed and starts bugging me to pay attention to him.

30 days of prednisone and then we have to wean him off that.


#307

So glad they sent him home! I will often send cats who aren’t eating for no good reason home overnight just to rule out “anorexia of a strange place” disease. Cats are so well-known for refusing food, water, and litterboxes just because they are in the hospital. Hope things continue to improve!


#308

I think my chicken has a dislocated hip. We’re going to check around for a chicken vet but it’s been almost three days, not sure she’ll fully recover now.

OTOH, she is using it as a prop, and gets along just fine, and the other birds aren’t picking on her. I believe she was the alpha bird.


#309

As a chicken vet, if she is able to do chicken things and there are no open wounds, it may not be worth trying to fix it. Chickens can have a stroke and die from things like drawing blood and unnecessary handling, so I always warn people that bad things can happen inadvertently when trying to fix them. The other question is what is her expected longevity in the flock? And can she make it that long in her current state? Good luck. Chickens can be tough to know whether to treat or not.


#310

She’s almost sort of walking now. So I think we are going to leave well enough alone. No one is picking on her, she can move in and out of the coop, she doesn’t seem to be in pain.

She’s only a year and a half old, but she’s a golden comet, maybe one more year of production, then soup. The chicks aren’t getting picked on as much now, but they are in a constant panic, I hope they get over it soon.


#311

So, I have one of ThinkGeek’s tribbles (about 8" around and makes noise) in my room. This morning I’m in my computer room, and I hear it start making noise. I think “That’s odd. It’s getting louder.” I turn around to look, and there’s Scraps, carrying this thing down the hall.


#312

I, too, have a tribble! Christmas gift from my sister. :grin:


#313

This leads to a funny image, especially for those who remember either ‘Chicken Boo’ from Animaniancs or the blue lawyer from Futurama…


#314

He’s a giant chicken, I tell you! A giant chicken!


#315

My cat is starting to act more and more like a dog, and the big cat is becoming more of a dark presence that lurks around the house. She’ll still come to me when I’m feeling sick and make bread, but besides that we mostly have one cat that acts like a dog and a shadow under the chair.

Dog cat brought me a stuffed softball, meowing the whole time, dropped it at my feet, and chased and caught it when my youngest threw it for her a few times.


#316

I have two cats who carry their toys around meowing like they’re dying the whole time. The first few times it happened I’d run to see what was wrong, now I know it’s just that they have one of their favourite toys. Which will soon end up in one of my shoes, which is a whole 'nother story.


#317

Pip plays fetch. And my old cat Dannon did too. But there’s a rule in the house that if a cat brings you a paper ball, you have to throw it. It’s the rules.


#318

Mine only did that at 3 AM. So we had to take the toys away.


#319

Hah 3AM, that’s when my cat decides it wants to sleep in my bedroom, or when it decides it wants to sleep somewhere else. That cat will push on my door for hours, and it’s a bit loose in the casing, so it bumps back and forth, nice heavy wooden door, bump, badump, maow, bump, thud, bump, bumpbump, scratch. Thankfully the door is just within reach from my side of the bed.

And yeah, when she’s carrying the softball she’s caterwauling.


#320

Vlad is excellent at fetch. We’ve taught him to do it with Nerf darts, so he can run far and bring them back for reloads. We’ve had to replace many for being excessively loved. He will tap the gun or pull a dart out with a single claw and bring it to you when he wants to play.

Dak, I went through the expensive option with Boris. There was no hope of a cure and we bought hours, not even days. Just love him and take videos of his happiness.


#321

My dog won’t even act like a dog. For he is a human and hall be treated as such. Sometimes, just to amuse himself, he’ll bring us a toy, get us to throw it, and then look at it, us, and then go lay down. Just to prove he’s got us trained. :joy: