Sick cat

Sep. 5th, 2009 09:56 am
jennyaxe: Photo in black and white. I'm in profile, looking to the left, with a calm and content half-smile. (Default)
[personal profile] jennyaxe
I've posted a bit on Facebook and Twitter about my cat Zeta being ill. Last Sunday she began showing signs of nausea, there was some drooling and quite a bit of miaowing. During the night she got worse, she had what looked like epileptic seizures at least twice during the night. After the last one, about 7 am, she was unable to move or focus her eyes on anything.

I took her to the vet, they ran blood tests and gave her IV nutrition. After a while she got better, was again able to focus. She had one more seizure while there, and she started getting bloody diarrhoea. On Wednesday she was released and seemed perfectly normal. The vet said it looked like poisoning, but none of us could figure out how she might have gotten poisoned. She's an indoor cat, we don't have mice, we have no new plants, and Arthas who is now 10 months old gnaws everything - so if there were something poisonous here he'd be getting ill, too.

Anyhow, we have been feeding her boiled fish. She started getting the drools again on Thursday, and yesterday when I spoke to the vet they said I should make sure to give her smaller portions. So last night after work I did - she got about 1-2 tablespoons of boiled fish per hour, and after the fourth feeding she even stopped trying to steal food from the other cats.

And then she got a seizure again, and a second one this night. Now she looks perfectly healthy and is begging for more food, but about two hours after her last feeding she started with the drool again.

I have no idea what causes this. The only thing I can come up with is to feed her small portions. Maybe the seizure isn't really a seizure, maybe it's her stomach cramping so hard that her whole body shakes, and the neurological symptoms she had on Monday were from her hitting her head while cramping. I don't know, and there seems to be no reasonable way for the vets to tell. They've been talking about spinal fluid samples and MRIs and things - but they're not sure it'll give them anything to go on, and the cost is pretty steep.

If she doesn't get better we will have to put her to sleep. I really don't want to do that, she's only eleven years old, and when she isn't cramping or drooling she seems so perfectly healthy and normal. I don't know what to do.

Date: 2009-09-05 08:26 am (UTC)
ext_481: origami crane (Default)
From: [identity profile] pir-anha.livejournal.com
i am sorry; i have absolutely no idea other than "poison". you have my sympathy.

you said you have no new plants, but maybe it's an old one she's just started to chew? list of plants toxic to cats: http://www.cfainc.org/articles/plants.html -- read the other info on that site as well.

what i might try is to isolate her in a cage, to try and keep her away from anything that might be the problem. if she still seizes, then you know it's not anything environmental.

good luck finding the cause!

Date: 2009-09-05 10:02 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jennyaxe.livejournal.com
The only one of those that I have is an aloe vera, and none of the cats have been at it. None of them will gnaw a succulent, they go for plants with leaves (preferably dry leaves). I keep spider plants all over the place; they like them better than most others and they're not poisonous.

She will go batshit insane if I put her in a cage, but that's certainly better than being dead. OTOH she did have one seizure when she'd been at the vet's for 20 hours.

I have the feeling that there's something wrong with her stomach since it does seem to be somewhat related to feeding schedule, plus she sprays a little when she seizes and it's reddish. Maybe an ulcer or something. She did have bloody diarrhoea... and maybe the seizures aren't exactly seizures, maybe they're like the contractions they get when they vomit only a lot stronger. Last night she seemed to be aware even while seizing and that points away from brain problems.

Date: 2009-09-05 08:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] artela.livejournal.com
*hugs*
Did they check her potassium levels?
Oh, and if you can bear to, Zeta may be more comfortable and settled if you cuddle her loosely in your arms while she seizes.

Date: 2009-09-05 09:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jennyaxe.livejournal.com
I think they did - they checked for infections and stuff, too.

I try to hold her but if she's flailing around on the floor I'm worried that I'll hurt her when I pick her up. I do pick her up when it starts to ease down though, even if she keeps getting small "hiccups" for a while. (Not really hiccups, but I don't quite know how to describe it... it's like a tenth of a second long seizure, so to speak)

Date: 2009-09-05 09:08 am (UTC)
jekesta: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jekesta
::hugs a lot::

I have no helpful suggestions, but that's a horrible situation to be in. I hope she improves. x

Date: 2009-09-05 10:02 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jennyaxe.livejournal.com
Thanks. It means a lot that you care.

Date: 2009-09-06 08:59 pm (UTC)

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