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Author Topic: Please send your prayers for Otto  (Read 5338 times)
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JoMax
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« on: August 18, 2014, 03:33:09 AM »

I posted a few days back in a general update, but now doing a separate thread in this area as it's more suitable.

Poor Otto had been going off his food, also seemed a bit snotty.  Took him to vet week before last, chest sounded bit wheezy so given steroid shot plus course of Sinulox.  Still no better after few days so went back last week - on the Monday had all the blood tests taken (nothing bad found) then on Tues in for X-rays of his chest.  Proved to be lots of fluid so they drained (got 100ml off each side) - and the feeling, having seen the fluid was it most likely heart (rather than tumor).  Send sample of for analysis anyhow, and treating as HCM for now.  So he on diuretics, plus fortekor.  They found he ate quite well Tues evening, Weds, Thurs - tho needing hand-feeding, but felt he had improved.  Brought him home Fri, but really he's not good - doesn't want to eat - would take one/two mouthfuls then turn away as if the act of swallowing causing too much ?discomfort.  On Sat wouldn't even do that, so resorted to force-feeding.

He's very weak and lies on my futon on his side - will struggle up to his water bowl and the litter tray every 2-3 hours, and I can see his legs, esp the rear ones, are very weak.  I've been trying to syringe feed, but it's hard and so distressing - he is so floppy it's hard to hold him with his mouth in good position - he just tres to lie down, mov onto his side.  And I'm terrified of the food getting ingested into his lungs.  Spoke to vet again this morning, and am taking him in tomorrow when we should have the results back (tho he'll phone if they come in sooner) to see what we think is next option - and for them to give me more guidance on how to best feed.  Although after that tearful phone call, I decided to try force finger-feeding again - i.e. putting small amount on fingers, opening his mouth and putting onto his tongue - not an easy procedure (and one which got my right thumb bitten through on Sat - his canine punctured my thumbnail right near the quick) but I am getting better at it, and acually got almost 1/3 portion in that way.

So any similar experiences anyone ?  A friend here has a HCM cat who was diagnosed in March after the same symtoms, and he's now doing pretty well, with daily medication - and has certainly had 4-5 months quailty life since.  But what concerns me with Otto is he's still so weak and out-of-it, even with the meds - I'd have thought they should be mkaing a difference by now.  Vet said they were reluctant to increase dose because of danger of dehydration.   I may be clutching at straws but he does seem like about 2% more alert today, and there was loads of wet litter so he's obv peed out a lot more.

I just feel so awful - he's having such a dreadful life right now - and all all that's been inflicted on him for the last week is misery, which hasn't helped.  He's such a sweet natured cat, he puts up with anything, but every time I go into the room now he looks up and tries to move away as if he expects I'll being doing more horrible things to him.

It's going to be hard - to decide whether to put him through a load more procedures (possible seeing Cardiologist later this week for ECG, possible draining again) which may leave him just as miserable......
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"I can think of many ways in which I would become a better person if I were more like my cats. But I cannot think of a single way in which my cats would be any better for being more like me."  A.N.Wilson
ranger
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« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2014, 07:01:57 AM »

Aw I read about your move, always stressful even if things go well which yours did not.

A sick kitty also stressful, don't feel guilty he knows you are doing your best for him.  The last time I had to force feed I got more food on me than in the cat.  Do you have a syringe? What about fluids, that might make him feel better.

I hope Otto will rally and you have quality time with him.   :-*to Otto
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Spartycats
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« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2014, 07:13:21 AM »

Oh, I'm so sorry to hear this news about Otto.  I'm sending many prayers.  I wish your vet could see him today, though I know it's late in the day there. Catmom5 tells me a feeding tube is not as awful as she thought it would be.  Meantime, a syringe might be easier on your fingers.  (No fluids without consent of vet, since it's possibly a cardiac problem)
« Last Edit: August 18, 2014, 07:16:25 AM by Spartycats » Logged
lesliek
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« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2014, 07:30:26 AM »

We had to do the balancing act with Remy , our chihuahua. I would try to keep him going until you see the cardiologist. They are very open with opinions on how hard it will be on the patient & how long they feel he has. He will always be slightly dehydrated on the meds, so as I said a balancing act . Also most heart conditions are considered a wasting disease were appetite is affected negatively . Most of the meds can be compounded for syringing & the pills that can't fit into empty gel capsules to make swallowing easier . Sending positive thoughts and prayers for Otto to eat more and feel better !
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GKit
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« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2014, 08:38:21 AM »

Sending positive and supportive thoughts for you and Otto.  It's tremendously difficult to see them in such distress.  Did they say what things need to be done to definitively diagnose it as HCM or if there are alternate meds to try? Hoping they find meds that work for will work for him.
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catbird
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« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2014, 02:24:02 PM »

Poor Otto and poor you, for all the sorrow you must feel at seeing him like this. Sending many warm thoughts your way.

The echocardiogram may be useful to further refine the diagnosis. I'd guess he'll need heart meds in order to really turn a corner. Yes, the Lasix makes them pee incredible amounts, as I saw with a friend's cat who was on it.  I definitely recommend the syringe for assisted feeding rather than your finger. The vet should be able to give you a couple designed for that purpose.
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caylee
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« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2014, 03:45:27 PM »

Thinking of you and Otto during this stressful time for both of you.

Hugs
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catmom5
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« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2014, 05:21:56 PM »

I have had two angels with heart disease and have two now - Cassie has hcm, but it's been mild and, other than a heart murmur, is stable. Buffy has cardiology, but since he also has chronic lymphocytic leukemia, the heart problems (symptom free at the moment) are secondary.

Jess had restrictive cardiomyopathy and once he crashed, we couldn't reverse the lungs filling up. I had to let him go. I wish I had let him go before they tried all of the oxygen and lasix because he was really suffering. He was on medications for a long while before he died, which seemed to help him. Dexter (CJ's sister) died from a saddle thrombis. We had no idea she had any heart problems at all because she showed no symptoms until she threw the blood clot.

It does sound as if Otto's hcm has progressed to a very serious stage. The not eating is an issue that I've struggled with - and I've come to the conclusion that when they really choose not to eat and medications don't help, they are trying to tell us something. I hope you can get him into a cardiologist and find out exactly what's going on. CJ had several feeding tubes and they were very manageable and I would do them again for her, but her conditions were not heart-related at all.

Good luck - it's miserable to have a sick cat.
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BW
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« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2014, 05:33:52 PM »

So sorry for poor Otto.  How well I understand your not wanting to cause him distress.  I also finger fed, and finally decided to get more in with the Monoject 412 syringe.  the tech cut off the tip, so it was shorter and bigger, and I  must say, that this is the best syringe I've ever used for force feeding.  I is SMOOTH, and never  jerks so you can slowly put in tiny amounts at a time.

No, it hasn't worked really well for Tigger because of the stomach cancer, I don't want to force him to take any more than he wants. But the syringe was not at fault.  I have tried many over the years, and disliked them all, but this one seems to work smoothly and well.  I will SAVE IT for future use.

I am totally unfamiliar with Otto's heart condition, so can't offer any advice and the others here know far more.  I do understand your distress however at Ottos suffering when you try to help him. I know the feeling well. . He sounds like a dear sweet cat.  Bless his heart.

And I pray you will find a helpful diagnosis, and will be able to offer Otto a less upsetting procedure for feeding and for  meds.
You certainly do have all my prayers, and my sympathy.  Wishing you and Otto the best.  Bless you both.
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NedF
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« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2014, 06:49:51 PM »

I hope Otto will be okay until you can get him to the vet tomorrow. I feel so bad for you.  Cry
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petslave
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« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2014, 08:43:35 PM »

Prayers that the vets can find something to help Otto's HCM and he still has time left with you.  I had a boy kitty years ago with a severe heart murmur who went into a crisis after his vaccines.  It took several weeks to get him back to a relatively normal life.  They kept having to adjust his meds. 
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Meowli
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« Reply #11 on: August 19, 2014, 02:25:37 AM »

Sending many prayers and good thoughts for Otto.
((hugs))
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JoMax
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« Reply #12 on: August 19, 2014, 03:18:29 AM »

Well, we went to the vet earlier - his chest is loads better, looks like the fluid has almost gone - they can hear his heart now which was not audible last week with all the noise of the fluids as he stuggled to breathe.  So can now hear there is a heart problem - and the fluid analysis confirms this.

But next steps really depend on whether we can get him stronger again - his legs are so wobbly and he's gone from 4.4 to 3.4 kilos (think this is c.10 to 7.75lbs) in 2 weeks.  He clearly has no quality of life struggling to move a couple of ft just to drink/use the litter.  So next we have to see if we can get his strength back by feeding - the vet did say he has experienced cats in this condition who do and who do not improve with food - and in the latter case sometime they dont even if they gain weight.

So to give him the best chance of getting nutrition in properly, they are going to take him for a while to feed and monitor.  If he responds and improves, they can then help guide me in doing it myself if still needed - and then we can consider cardio appt.

So please keep him in your thoughts - he was so miserable anyway, it seemed in balance better to have him being expertly fed, than hit-and-miss here.  Just pray he will start to strengthen so we can have some quality time together - I really want him to be able to enjoy pottering outside in the late summer sunshine....
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"I can think of many ways in which I would become a better person if I were more like my cats. But I cannot think of a single way in which my cats would be any better for being more like me."  A.N.Wilson
catmom5
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« Reply #13 on: August 19, 2014, 04:51:17 AM »

Glad to hear there has been some improvement. Prayers that nutrition will help and give you some good quality time together.
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lesliek
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« Reply #14 on: August 19, 2014, 06:20:32 AM »

You would be surprised the difference getting enough food & oxygen can make ! I hope he gets stronger so you can have more time together  Kiss.
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