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Author Topic: Max was out of breath  (Read 4531 times)
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Janet
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« on: August 05, 2010, 02:51:26 PM »

This morning when Max, Raleigh and I were playing with a "feather on a stick", Max was very exuberant and jumped, played and had a good time.
I noticed after playtime, that he seemed to be out of breath.
When we adopted him, we were told he had a heart murmur and they suggested an echocardiogram in Jan 2011 (he had one in Jan. 2010 that showed no heart deterioration).  Our vet also detected the murmur when he listened during one of our visits.
Should I be overly concerned about this? Have others members noticed shortness of breath by their kitties after play?
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Mandycat
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« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2010, 03:14:32 PM »

Was it hot in the area where he was playing?  Is this the first time you have noticed him being short of breath?  How bad was his murmur - they are usually rated on a scale of 1 to 6.  Did he also have an elevated heart rate?  BP?  You might want to consider moving up that Echo if you continue to see him be so out of breath with exertion.  If there is a problem, it is better to treat it early.  Some murmurs mean nothing, but it can also be a sign of more serious heart problems. 
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merrihart
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« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2010, 03:54:34 PM »

Bucky has a murmur, rather a low one, I think.  Never did get him checked out further.  I do know his murmur has not gotten worse.

I don't think I've ever noticed him out of breathe, but I've never played with him intensely.  He's rather a laid back, lazy kind of cat.
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JustMe
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« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2010, 04:00:46 PM »

At the very least, I would suggest having him rechecked by your vet.  If it wasn't excessively hot, shortness of breath could possibly be related to the heart or the lungs.  Does he do well at the vet or does he get stressed out?  If he tends to get stressed out easily at the vet's, I'd do a phone consult first.  Moving up the echocardiogram sounds like a good idea to me, as well.

ETA: several of my cats have had murmurs since they were youngsters. For some of them, it is harmless.  Max's shortness of breath concerns me though if he was only engaged in light playtime.
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« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2010, 04:16:07 PM »

I agree that he should probably be checked by a vet sooner than January, just to make sure nothing is wrong.  I have two cats with heart murmurs, and my vet told me to bring them in for re-check if they seemed to get out of breath with moderate play.  It may not be his heart, though--mild asthma could do it, too.  Or as others have said, heat, and other factors.
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lesliek
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« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2010, 04:27:15 PM »

Remy has a mild heart murmer, & if he plays hard when its hot he gets out of breath. It did get much worse when he was dehydrated from his food problem, but improved with fluids. I wouldn't wait, you will feel better if he's checked & its normal.
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Mark T
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« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2010, 05:08:22 PM »

Quote
Have others members noticed shortness of breath by their kitties after play?

Yes, but only after playing with the same toy you mentioned. We have a toy consisting of several feathers tied to a string attached to a stick. We bring it out rarely because they go wild over it. They grab the feathers and try to run away with it, growling and snorting and slinking around with it in their mouths.

I have found they will jump repeatedly trying to grab it until they lie down panting. Jumping uses a lot of energy to power their legs muscles and they need to breath deeply to access that energy. Admittedly one of our cats has a slight murmur, but the others pant too if played to exhaustion. The other cats have sound hearts.

By contrast, they can chase paper balls like crazy but they never pant. I think you have to judge whether Max's panting was caused by intense play or just mild to moderate play. Or if you notice he pants doing other activities.

Does the panting last a long time or just a few minutes? If it is over fast I would not be too worried.

Still it is probably good to get another echo sometime by a board certified cardiologist. My feeling based on hearing of  others experieriences is that anything less than board certified is not worth the time and trouble.




« Last Edit: August 06, 2010, 03:28:27 AM by Mark T » Logged
August
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« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2010, 05:19:37 PM »

We, too, have certain toys that make certain kitties get so excited that there is sometimes panting.

When I first got Da Bird, Chami got so excited she stuck her tongue out and was panting and out of breath and it really scared me... but it turned out she was totally fine.

That being said, I guess heart murmur would be on my mind.  Could you call the vet who suggested the retest in January '11 and just tell him what happened and get his opinion by phone?
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catwoods
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« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2010, 09:55:51 PM »

sounds like a little re-checking of the heart murmer would be in order, but I'm hoping this was just a case of playing hard and/or, heat. We've had low 100's for a week and my guys are not active at all.
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JJ
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« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2010, 10:01:13 PM »

Hoping that Max has relaxed after his exciting playtime. Maybe it is a combination of things - heat, humidity, or even asthma as was mentioned. Let us know should you decide to have Max checked by a specialist.
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Janet
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« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2010, 02:42:50 PM »

Thanks you for your comments everyone. I appreciate it.
We have played with "feather on a stick" a couple of times since the incident.
He really gets into it and does a lot of jumping straight up in the air (as Mark T mentioned) using his leg muscles. We have been playing inside in the mornings, but it has been very hot and humid here (just like everywhere else!).
He loves to go out on our screened-in porch and has been doing that from time to time. I have to go out and carry him in after an hour or so as I feel it's too hot for him to be out there for very long.
These last couple of playtimes, I didn't let him get quite as exuberant and when he had jumped and run a bit, I discontinued playtime.
Another echo will probably be in his future.
We'll keep an eye on it for now... thanks, again.
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August
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« Reply #11 on: August 07, 2010, 05:44:42 PM »

LOL about Max enjoying his "sauna" and that you have to bring him in to the cool area after a while. 

Glad to hear that things seem to be all right with the heart murmur.  Hopefully the retest next January will show that it really is nothing.
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