Posted by terrepruitt on October 26, 2013
About three months ago I posted about putting my cat to sleep. We did not do that, but she seemed so sick I thought we were going to have to. Then when I took her to the vet he had a completely different opinion. He is accustomed to seeing cats with the disease our cat has. So he said she did not look as bad as he has seen. She had just lost so much weight it just seemed so unlikely that a cat could survive being so skinny. At one point she weighed over 12 pounds and at that point she was down to less than half that. At the time I wrote the post I just kept thinking we were faced with that decision. But we were not. We might still get to that point, but since then we have come a long way. The disease the cat has is not curable so it will be an on going situation, but hopefully she will live for AT LEAST a couple–few more years.
When I wrote that post everything coming out of the cat was liquid – and had been for over a month. And it lasted almost two months. Part of the liquid was her throwing up. She would eat then throw up, so she would stop eating the item that made her sick. I think that part of the problem (and you will probably agree) was that I would give her something else so she would eat something. I don’t think that changing her food that often was helping matters. But she was so thin my main goal was just to get her to eat.
The treatment for the disease she has (Inflammatory Bowel Disease) is steroids and a chemotherapy drug. Well, the steroid we were giving her made her retain so much fluid it affected her heart. So we stopped that. Now she is just getting the chemotherapy. It is a very small amount three times a week.
At this writing we are headed into our 37th hour without vomit. Yay! But she did that earlier this week, almost made it 48 hours. But that is still better than multiple times a day or even once a day. Maybe it will be that she will make it past the 48th hour then it will happen, but then maybe the next span will be even longer. That would be nice. But at least the other end hasn’t had any issues since August.
She was settled on one particular cat food, but then the pet store owner gave me a can of another type of food. When the cat hesitated at her dish, I thought, well, I’ll try this one he gave me because I liked the ingredients better. Well, she seemed to like it. And she seemed to like it more than what she has been eating for the past two months or so, so we made the switch. But this time we switched slowly and today was the first day she had the new stuff “straight”. I had been mixing the two. They are the same protein, just different brands with different ingredients. The new one has less ingredients (chemicals) than the other stuff so I am happy. The new one does not have “meal” in it and I think that is what was making her vomit. We will see.
Since IBD is where the body does not absorb all the necessary nutrients from the food, I am giving her Vitamin B12 shots. Normally a cat can produce it, but without all the nutrients needed to function properly I don’t think her body is able to produce it. So I am giving it to her. I have increased it from once a week to twice a week. It really seems to help.
The last visit (Thurs., October 24, 2013) to the doctor was good. Again, she is frighteningly skinny to my husband and I and she even lost a couple of ounces, but the vet was pleased with her progress. He said it seemed the heart problem cleared up . . . while there still might be an issue it is no longer the problem that he was hearing when she was on the steroid. Her latest blood work came back fine. They test it often to see how the chemotherapy is affecting the cat. He seemed happy with her. Again, he is used to seeing cats with IBD so he thinks she is fine. Yes she is skinny, but her blood work was fine, her coat is great, no temperature, her eyes are bright, and she is stronger than she was two months ago. Aside from being so skinny she is good. So we are staying the course and enjoying every minute we have left with her.
She is a very good cat. So we are doing our best to make her happy. Fat and happy would be AWESOME, but I’ll settle for happy.
Again, thanks for listening. I thought I would give you an update since I brought the situation up in August. She has days when she feels great and days when she feels not so great, but I believe for the most part she is good.
Do you have a pet?