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yngver
August 9th 06, 07:50 PM
Hi, our 8 year old cat has been having difficulty climbing stairs the
last couple months. She can go downstairs okay but she acts as though
it is an ordeal to climb up. She always uses one front leg and sort of
hoists herself up. The vet checked her over and he found no signs of
pain in her legs or shoulders. Thinking it might be arthritis, he
prescribed Cosequin. I know it hasnt been long enough (two and a half
weeks) for the Cosequin to do much, but on some days now she seems even
worse. For the last couple days she wont even try to jump up on the bed
or sofa, although she still goes up the top of the cat tree. Her
technique, however, is to sort of climb up the side of the cat tree and
then do small jumps to get to the top. She still climbs stairs when she
wants to but seems to avoid it more--she will sit at the bottom and
look up for a while before attempting it. However, she growls if I try
to help her--which is not unusual because she never did like to be
picked up.

She had a geriatric panel (bloodwork and urinalysis) about two months
ago and everything was normal. She is asthmatic but it is controlled by
Flovent. I have never read anything about that having possible side
effects. We plan to take her back to the vet next week but does anyone
have any ideas about what this might be? I am not sure it sounds like
arthritis, and if it is I cant figure which part of her, legs or back,
is affected. The vet did suggest she could get around better if she
lost weight, which we realize, but she is only about a half pound over
her best weight and she used to weigh a pound more and didnt have
trouble climbing or jumping then. (sorry about the lack of apostrophes;
google groups wont let me put them in for some reason.)
-yngver

August 10th 06, 03:09 AM
I would recommend Royal Canin's mature indoor food. It has a good
amount of glucosamine in it, and it did wonders for my 17 year old cat.
He had improvement within a couple days,and it clearly showed when I
ran out once.

Also, have you had new bloodwork done? Kira had a geriatric panel in
February that was fine. In May I took her in for an eye infection that
turned out be to herpes brought on by stress. It got better and then
worse, so I took her back in July. This time we did new bloodwork.

She had anemia.

We started treatment and did new bloodwork again two weeks later.
Worse. New treatment. That was a week ago, and she has improved in the
last two days. Hopefully, her next round will show that improvement.

But you may have something new that has happened since your last
bloodwork. Kira was weak from the anemia. Sleeping more, trouble with
the stairways, can't jump up on counters, even fell off a bookshelf.

if it isn't pain causing this, it may be weakness. One thing you can do
is look at her gums. Are they red or pale? Kira is ghostly pale.

I would highly recommend a new blood panel. Kira was fine in February,
yet sick in May. It didn't take long at all for her condition to
change. And the vet visit with the new bloodwork didn't turn up
anything at all, just a confirmation that her weight was still too low
and her eye was still messed up. It was the bloodwork that told the vet
she had a more serious problem.

Wendy
August 10th 06, 11:34 AM
"yngver" > wrote in message
ups.com...
> Hi, our 8 year old cat has been having difficulty climbing stairs the
> last couple months. She can go downstairs okay but she acts as though
> it is an ordeal to climb up. She always uses one front leg and sort of
> hoists herself up. The vet checked her over and he found no signs of
> pain in her legs or shoulders. Thinking it might be arthritis, he
> prescribed Cosequin. I know it hasnt been long enough (two and a half
> weeks) for the Cosequin to do much, but on some days now she seems even
> worse. For the last couple days she wont even try to jump up on the bed
> or sofa, although she still goes up the top of the cat tree. Her
> technique, however, is to sort of climb up the side of the cat tree and
> then do small jumps to get to the top. She still climbs stairs when she
> wants to but seems to avoid it more--she will sit at the bottom and
> look up for a while before attempting it. However, she growls if I try
> to help her--which is not unusual because she never did like to be
> picked up.
>
> She had a geriatric panel (bloodwork and urinalysis) about two months
> ago and everything was normal. She is asthmatic but it is controlled by
> Flovent. I have never read anything about that having possible side
> effects. We plan to take her back to the vet next week but does anyone
> have any ideas about what this might be? I am not sure it sounds like
> arthritis, and if it is I cant figure which part of her, legs or back,
> is affected. The vet did suggest she could get around better if she
> lost weight, which we realize, but she is only about a half pound over
> her best weight and she used to weigh a pound more and didnt have
> trouble climbing or jumping then. (sorry about the lack of apostrophes;
> google groups wont let me put them in for some reason.)
> -yngver
>

My Tigger's arthritis showed up on x-ray. We treated her with Cosequin but
that doesn't address the pain issues. We gave her Arnica Montana for the
pain. The vet had originally prescribed prednisolone but that didn't seem to
help her.

We discussed getting acupuncture but Tigger got so stressed at the vet's
they didn't think she'd be a very good candidate for it. A friend of mine's
cat got a new lease on life after having that done though.

W

yngver
August 10th 06, 08:03 PM
wrote:
> I would recommend Royal Canin's mature indoor food. It has a good
> amount of glucosamine in it, and it did wonders for my 17 year old cat.
> He had improvement within a couple days,and it clearly showed when I
> ran out once.

Thanks. I think we have tried that in the past and she wouldn't eat it,
but there are so many Royal Canin formulations it might have been a
couple of other ones. We have tried switching her to Science Diet
Advanced Protection for Seniors but it's also hard to her to eat it.
>
> Also, have you had new bloodwork done? Kira had a geriatric panel in
> February that was fine. In May I took her in for an eye infection that
> turned out be to herpes brought on by stress. It got better and then
> worse, so I took her back in July. This time we did new bloodwork.
>
> She had anemia.
>
> We started treatment and did new bloodwork again two weeks later.
> Worse. New treatment. That was a week ago, and she has improved in the
> last two days. Hopefully, her next round will show that improvement.
>
> But you may have something new that has happened since your last
> bloodwork. Kira was weak from the anemia. Sleeping more, trouble with
> the stairways, can't jump up on counters, even fell off a bookshelf.

Wow, I'm sorry to hear about Kira. Well, the vet didn't suggest new
blood work but it's probably a good idea. He did just do another
urinalysis last week and that was normal. Our cat doesn't seem
particularly weak--she can trot around quickly if she wants to, or is
playing with a toy, although she doesn't run flat out. But she never
did much running anyway.
>
> if it isn't pain causing this, it may be weakness. One thing you can do
> is look at her gums. Are they red or pale? Kira is ghostly pale.

I'll look at her gums. She is eating, drinking, urinating, etc.
normally so I'm having trouble finding any clues as to what could be
wrong.
>
> I would highly recommend a new blood panel. Kira was fine in February,
> yet sick in May. It didn't take long at all for her condition to
> change. And the vet visit with the new bloodwork didn't turn up
> anything at all, just a confirmation that her weight was still too low
> and her eye was still messed up. It was the bloodwork that told the vet
> she had a more serious problem.

Maybe I will try to move up the vet appointment, although she seems
better today.Thanks for the advice. I very much hope Kira continues to
recover.
-yngver

yngver
August 10th 06, 08:07 PM
Wendy wrote:
> "yngver" > wrote in message
> ups.com...
> > Hi, our 8 year old cat has been having difficulty climbing stairs the
> > last couple months. She can go downstairs okay but she acts as though
> > it is an ordeal to climb up. She always uses one front leg and sort of
> > hoists herself up. The vet checked her over and he found no signs of
> > pain in her legs or shoulders. Thinking it might be arthritis, he
> > prescribed Cosequin. I know it hasnt been long enough (two and a half
> > weeks) for the Cosequin to do much, but on some days now she seems even
> > worse. For the last couple days she wont even try to jump up on the bed
> > or sofa, although she still goes up the top of the cat tree. Her
> > technique, however, is to sort of climb up the side of the cat tree and
> > then do small jumps to get to the top. She still climbs stairs when she
> > wants to but seems to avoid it more--she will sit at the bottom and
> > look up for a while before attempting it. However, she growls if I try
> > to help her--which is not unusual because she never did like to be
> > picked up.
> >
> > She had a geriatric panel (bloodwork and urinalysis) about two months
> > ago and everything was normal. She is asthmatic but it is controlled by
> > Flovent. I have never read anything about that having possible side
> > effects. We plan to take her back to the vet next week but does anyone
> > have any ideas about what this might be? I am not sure it sounds like
> > arthritis, and if it is I cant figure which part of her, legs or back,
> > is affected. The vet did suggest she could get around better if she
> > lost weight, which we realize, but she is only about a half pound over
> > her best weight and she used to weigh a pound more and didnt have
> > trouble climbing or jumping then. (sorry about the lack of apostrophes;
> > google groups wont let me put them in for some reason.)
> > -yngver
> >
>
> My Tigger's arthritis showed up on x-ray. We treated her with Cosequin but
> that doesn't address the pain issues. We gave her Arnica Montana for the
> pain. The vet had originally prescribed prednisolone but that didn't seem to
> help her.
>
> We discussed getting acupuncture but Tigger got so stressed at the vet's
> they didn't think she'd be a very good candidate for it. A friend of mine's
> cat got a new lease on life after having that done though.
>
I guess I should ask the vet to x-ray her. He seemed to think if there
was anything wrong with her joints, he would be able to tell by
manipulating her legs and shoulders. I will have to look for the Arnica
Montana. Maybe that will help.

My sister in law did get acupuncture for her 16 year old arthritic cat,
and she said it helped a lot too. I am not sure our cat (who is half
that age!) actually has arthritis yet, so I'd have to be sure that's
the problem first.

Thanks for the advice-
yngver

August 11th 06, 03:43 AM
yngver wrote:
> wrote:
> > I would recommend Royal Canin's mature indoor food. It has a good
> > amount of glucosamine in it, and it did wonders for my 17 year old cat.
> > He had improvement within a couple days,and it clearly showed when I
> > ran out once.
>
> Thanks. I think we have tried that in the past and she wouldn't eat it,
> but there are so many Royal Canin formulations it might have been a
> couple of other ones. We have tried switching her to Science Diet
> Advanced Protection for Seniors but it's also hard to her to eat it.
> >

The mature is a tad softer to help in chewing. If yo would like, send
me your snail mail address privately (friesian(at)zoocrewphoto(dot)com.
I will mail you a small sample, and you can see if she will eat it. The
company will send samples, but takes awhile.

You can also grind up glucosamine and add it to the food, but it is
hard to get a good dose if they don't eat a good portion of canned
food. I had chewable tablets for Maynard, but he was not consistent in
eating them.

> Wow, I'm sorry to hear about Kira. Well, the vet didn't suggest new
> blood work but it's probably a good idea. He did just do another
> urinalysis last week and that was normal. Our cat doesn't seem
> particularly weak--she can trot around quickly if she wants to, or is
> playing with a toy, although she doesn't run flat out. But she never
> did much running anyway.

I don't know if my vet intended to do bloodwork or not. I had a bad
feeling that I was on the edge of something starting. Vets know medical
issues and cats in general, but we know our particular pets the best. I
just knew she wasn't right. So, I went in with a list of things to ask.
When he saw I had a list, we went down my list before doing the
checkup. At that time, her bloodwork showed an HCT (comparable to PCV,
important for anemia) to be 27.9 which is just below the normal range
of 30-45. So, she was just starting her nose-dive. Two weeks later, it
was down to 11.7.

So, in a way, I was right. She really was on the edge of going down.
And other than weight loss and a goopy eye, I saw no other signs. She
was eating at that time, and moving fine. Her eating slowed to a crawl
after the initial diagnosis. And only after the diagnosis did I notice
occasional bouts of breathing fast. And the night before her return
trip was when she fell off the bookshelf and showed balance problems.

It could be that your kitty is just starting something, where the
symptoms have not completely presented themselves. You are just seeing
the small things that an alert owner would notice.


> I'll look at her gums. She is eating, drinking, urinating, etc.
> normally so I'm having trouble finding any clues as to what could be
> wrong.
> >

Kira was eating before her diagnosis, then dropped as she got worse.
Bathroom was completely normal.

> Maybe I will try to move up the vet appointment, although she seems
> better today.Thanks for the advice. I very much hope Kira continues to
> recover.

Thanks. She continues to eat more and feel better. I won't know for
sure until the next bloodwork that her numbers have really improved. I
take her back tomorrow and will ask if they should do bloodwork again.
He had me on a 2 week schedule previously. A website for canine anemia
said every week. I hate to take it too often when she is already short
on blood (it was actually thinner last week). But we can weigh her,
look at her gums, and see what he thinks. I do have to go to get more
prednisolone, so I'm definitely taking her.

yngver
August 11th 06, 04:04 PM
wrote:
> yngver wrote:
> > wrote:
> > > I would recommend Royal Canin's mature indoor food. It has a good
> > > amount of glucosamine in it, and it did wonders for my 17 year old cat.
> > > He had improvement within a couple days,and it clearly showed when I
> > > ran out once.
> >
> > Thanks. I think we have tried that in the past and she wouldn't eat it,
> > but there are so many Royal Canin formulations it might have been a
> > couple of other ones. We have tried switching her to Science Diet
> > Advanced Protection for Seniors but it's also hard to her to eat it.
> > >
>
> The mature is a tad softer to help in chewing. If yo would like, send
> me your snail mail address privately (friesian(at)zoocrewphoto(dot)com.
> I will mail you a small sample, and you can see if she will eat it. The
> company will send samples, but takes awhile.

Thanks. I will let you know if I can't find a smaller size in the
store. Even if she won't eat it, one of our other cats will eat
anything so it wouldn't go to waste, even though she is only 5 and not
yet "mature". I don't think it would hurt her.
>
> You can also grind up glucosamine and add it to the food, but it is
> hard to get a good dose if they don't eat a good portion of canned
> food. I had chewable tablets for Maynard, but he was not consistent in
> eating them.

Our cat is already on Cosequin that the vet prescribed. It's been about
3 weeks, not long enough to see much effect, the vet said. She does eat
it, mixed up in her canned food. She does eat it all because we mix it
up in the gravy part and she eats all of that.
>
> > Wow, I'm sorry to hear about Kira. Well, the vet didn't suggest new
> > blood work but it's probably a good idea. He did just do another
> > urinalysis last week and that was normal. Our cat doesn't seem
> > particularly weak--she can trot around quickly if she wants to, or is
> > playing with a toy, although she doesn't run flat out. But she never
> > did much running anyway.
>
> I don't know if my vet intended to do bloodwork or not. I had a bad
> feeling that I was on the edge of something starting. Vets know medical
> issues and cats in general, but we know our particular pets the best. I
> just knew she wasn't right. So, I went in with a list of things to ask.
> When he saw I had a list, we went down my list before doing the
> checkup. At that time, her bloodwork showed an HCT (comparable to PCV,
> important for anemia) to be 27.9 which is just below the normal range
> of 30-45. So, she was just starting her nose-dive. Two weeks later, it
> was down to 11.7.
>
> So, in a way, I was right. She really was on the edge of going down.
> And other than weight loss and a goopy eye, I saw no other signs. She
> was eating at that time, and moving fine. Her eating slowed to a crawl
> after the initial diagnosis. And only after the diagnosis did I notice
> occasional bouts of breathing fast. And the night before her return
> trip was when she fell off the bookshelf and showed balance problems.
>
> It could be that your kitty is just starting something, where the
> symptoms have not completely presented themselves. You are just seeing
> the small things that an alert owner would notice.

That's what I'm worried about. I'm bringing her back to the vet
Wednesday. Even though she mostly seems normal, I just have a feeling
something isn't quite right. Maybe nothing serious--I hope not--but I'd
like for them to repeat the bloodwork just to be sure. My husband is
convinced it's something like a pulled a muscle and he keeps saying she
is getting better, and on some days she does seem better, but I'm just
not sure. She just isn't doing some of her usual routines, although as
with your cat, her eating, drinking, litterbox habits, etc. are the
same as always, and she was even playing a little with a catnip toy
yesterday. So I don't think she feels too bad. She is only 8 years old
so that's another reason I'm a bit doubtful of the arthritis diagnosis.
>
>
> > I'll look at her gums. She is eating, drinking, urinating, etc.
> > normally so I'm having trouble finding any clues as to what could be
> > wrong.
> > >
>
> Kira was eating before her diagnosis, then dropped as she got worse.
> Bathroom was completely normal.

I looked at her gums and mouth and they look pink as normal. Plus I
remembered that the vet looked at her mouth too--he does every time we
bring a cat in--and I'm sure he would have noticed if her gums looked
pale.
>
> > Maybe I will try to move up the vet appointment, although she seems
> > better today.Thanks for the advice. I very much hope Kira continues to
> > recover.
>
> Thanks. She continues to eat more and feel better. I won't know for
> sure until the next bloodwork that her numbers have really improved. I
> take her back tomorrow and will ask if they should do bloodwork again.
> He had me on a 2 week schedule previously. A website for canine anemia
> said every week. I hate to take it too often when she is already short
> on blood (it was actually thinner last week). But we can weigh her,
> look at her gums, and see what he thinks. I do have to go to get more
> prednisolone, so I'm definitely taking her.

It sounds as though she is recovering, and that you did catch it before
she got too sick. Our cat certainly isn't losing weight, although we
are trying to restrict her food more, because I'm wondering if maybe
her problem is just that she gained some weight (she had been on a diet
for struvite crystals for a while, which she didn't really like, so
when we took her off that she liked the new food better and before we
knew it, she had gained half a pound).

I don't know much about regenerative anemia but from what I've read the
prenisolone should allow the red blood cell count to come back up,
right? I hope Kira continues to do better. If she is eating more that
has to be a good sign.

Thanks again and good luck--
yngver

August 12th 06, 12:56 AM
yngver wrote:

> That's what I'm worried about. I'm bringing her back to the vet
> Wednesday. Even though she mostly seems normal, I just have a feeling
> something isn't quite right. Maybe nothing serious--I hope not--but I'd
> like for them to repeat the bloodwork just to be sure.

Yes, I wasn't expecting anemia, but I figured since I had done a normal
one a few months earlier, any change would be a clear sign if there was
a problem. And since her exam was fine, it was only the bloodwork that
caught it.

And then, to see how badly it went down in 2 weeks with treatment
started, I can't imagine how badly it might have gone had we not seen
it at all yet. Sheis getting bloodwork again today. Results will be
back tomorrow. But she is feeling and acting better already, and the
vet said her blood was still thin, but not as thin as yesterday, so the
numbers should be improving. He had me lower the prednisolone dosage
back to the original dosage. I don't know if I go back in one or two
weeks. He'll probably tell me tomorrow. Otherwise, I go back when the
meds run out :)

I do hope you get some improvement soon. And maybe something in the
bloodwork will be mild, but something that can be treated and get her
healthy again. It seems better to have something there that can be
treated than no idea what it is or what to do.

yngver
August 17th 06, 06:22 PM
wrote:
> yngver wrote:
>
> > That's what I'm worried about. I'm bringing her back to the vet
> > Wednesday. Even though she mostly seems normal, I just have a feeling
> > something isn't quite right. Maybe nothing serious--I hope not--but I'd
> > like for them to repeat the bloodwork just to be sure.
>
> Yes, I wasn't expecting anemia, but I figured since I had done a normal
> one a few months earlier, any change would be a clear sign if there was
> a problem. And since her exam was fine, it was only the bloodwork that
> caught it.
>
> And then, to see how badly it went down in 2 weeks with treatment
> started, I can't imagine how badly it might have gone had we not seen
> it at all yet. Sheis getting bloodwork again today. Results will be
> back tomorrow. But she is feeling and acting better already, and the
> vet said her blood was still thin, but not as thin as yesterday, so the
> numbers should be improving. He had me lower the prednisolone dosage
> back to the original dosage. I don't know if I go back in one or two
> weeks. He'll probably tell me tomorrow. Otherwise, I go back when the
> meds run out :)
>
> I do hope you get some improvement soon. And maybe something in the
> bloodwork will be mild, but something that can be treated and get her
> healthy again. It seems better to have something there that can be
> treated than no idea what it is or what to do.

Just wanted to post an update. We had another blood panel done on our
cat and everything came out normal. One thing that concerns me a little
is that in the two and a half weeks since we last saw the vet, she lost
6 oz. I realize she needs to lose weight and she doesn't really like
the prescription food the vet gave us--it's for struvite crystals, so
she doesn't eat much of it, but that seems like too rapid a weight loss
to me. She went from 13.1 to 12.11. She should still lose about another
pound and the vet said he's not concerned, but of course I am. As far
as her ability to jump and climb, she hasn't improved that I can see.
She won't even try to jump on the bed--just stands there and looks at
me until I put her up there, and then she purrs. The vet said her
kneecaps felt thick--whatever that means--but that it might be just
normal for her. Our next step is to get x-rays, but he said she has to
be anesthesized for them to do them because cats won't hold still in
the positions they need to be for orthopedic x-rays. He said her teeth
need cleaning anyway so we are going to have the dental and the x-rays
done next week at the same time.

Vet suspects some kind of degenerative joint problem like arthritis,
but I am not so sure. If the x-rays show everything normal, I don't
know what to do next. It can't be because she is too fat (which the vet
implied) because this is certainly not the fattest she's ever been and
she had no trouble climbing or jumping then. In addition, she does act
as though one rear leg bothers her--she holds it up when going down
stairs so that she doesn't need to put weight on it--but the vet didn't
feel anything wrong with her legs when he examined her.

I just still feel something isn't quite right with her, although she
acts pretty normal. She has started using the litter box in the
basement even though that means an extra flight of stairs, when she
used to prefer the ones on the main floor. I suspect she feels
vulnerable--one of our other cats will smack her sometimes and I think
she feels she isn't agile enough to escape if she needs to.

Anyway, thanks again for all your advice and input. I hope your cat is
recovering well from the anemia and is much better now.
-yngver

yngver
August 24th 06, 06:56 PM
yngver wrote:
> wrote:
> > yngver wrote:
> >
> > > That's what I'm worried about. I'm bringing her back to the vet
> > > Wednesday. Even though she mostly seems normal, I just have a feeling
> > > something isn't quite right. Maybe nothing serious--I hope not--but I'd
> > > like for them to repeat the bloodwork just to be sure.
> >
> > Yes, I wasn't expecting anemia, but I figured since I had done a normal
> > one a few months earlier, any change would be a clear sign if there was
> > a problem. And since her exam was fine, it was only the bloodwork that
> > caught it.
> >
> > And then, to see how badly it went down in 2 weeks with treatment
> > started, I can't imagine how badly it might have gone had we not seen
> > it at all yet. Sheis getting bloodwork again today. Results will be
> > back tomorrow. But she is feeling and acting better already, and the
> > vet said her blood was still thin, but not as thin as yesterday, so the
> > numbers should be improving. He had me lower the prednisolone dosage
> > back to the original dosage. I don't know if I go back in one or two
> > weeks. He'll probably tell me tomorrow. Otherwise, I go back when the
> > meds run out :)
> >
> > I do hope you get some improvement soon. And maybe something in the
> > bloodwork will be mild, but something that can be treated and get her
> > healthy again. It seems better to have something there that can be
> > treated than no idea what it is or what to do.
>
> Just wanted to post an update. We had another blood panel done on our
> cat and everything came out normal. One thing that concerns me a little
> is that in the two and a half weeks since we last saw the vet, she lost
> 6 oz. I realize she needs to lose weight and she doesn't really like
> the prescription food the vet gave us--it's for struvite crystals, so
> she doesn't eat much of it, but that seems like too rapid a weight loss
> to me. She went from 13.1 to 12.11. She should still lose about another
> pound and the vet said he's not concerned, but of course I am. As far
> as her ability to jump and climb, she hasn't improved that I can see.
> She won't even try to jump on the bed--just stands there and looks at
> me until I put her up there, and then she purrs. The vet said her
> kneecaps felt thick--whatever that means--but that it might be just
> normal for her. Our next step is to get x-rays, but he said she has to
> be anesthesized for them to do them because cats won't hold still in
> the positions they need to be for orthopedic x-rays. He said her teeth
> need cleaning anyway so we are going to have the dental and the x-rays
> done next week at the same time.
>
> Vet suspects some kind of degenerative joint problem like arthritis,
> but I am not so sure. If the x-rays show everything normal, I don't
> know what to do next. It can't be because she is too fat (which the vet
> implied) because this is certainly not the fattest she's ever been and
> she had no trouble climbing or jumping then. In addition, she does act
> as though one rear leg bothers her--she holds it up when going down
> stairs so that she doesn't need to put weight on it--but the vet didn't
> feel anything wrong with her legs when he examined her.
>
> I just still feel something isn't quite right with her, although she
> acts pretty normal. She has started using the litter box in the
> basement even though that means an extra flight of stairs, when she
> used to prefer the ones on the main floor. I suspect she feels
> vulnerable--one of our other cats will smack her sometimes and I think
> she feels she isn't agile enough to escape if she needs to.
>
> Anyway, thanks again for all your advice and input. I hope your cat is
> recovering well from the anemia and is much better now.
> -yngver

Just to update, x-rays showed what the vet called "joint mice", also
called osteochondritis dissecans, which is when bits of cartilege
crumble off and ossify. There is a solid looking oblong one in one knee
joint and the other is more shadowy and no particular shape, so it
apparently hasn't ossified yet. But the vet said it should be clear
liquid there. I'm not sure of the cause--he said it could be from
chronic injury (which I don't know how would have happened) or just
osteoarthritis. I'm worried that not much can be done for her and even
though she was running and jumping normally a couple of months ago, he
said she won't ever be able to use her knees normally again. He said
there really isn't a surgical option for cats since it tends to make
things worse rather than better. For now he said just to keep her on
the Cosequin. She doesn't seem to be in much pain except when she
climbs the stairs, so he didn't want to prescribe an anti-inflammatory
until she gets worse.

I'm glad it is nothing life-threatening but I'm sad that our cat is
only 8 years old and at least according to the vet, her days of running
around the house chasing a fellow cat, or jumping up to her favorite
sleeping spots are over. I do intend to make some ramps and steps for
her so she can get up to some places easier, but I'm worried about what
she will be able to do in a couple years. She seems pretty young for
her joints to be degnerating.
-yngver

August 25th 06, 09:30 AM
yngver wrote:


> Just to update, x-rays showed what the vet called "joint mice", also
> called osteochondritis dissecans, which is when bits of cartilege
> crumble off and ossify. There is a solid looking oblong one in one knee
> joint and the other is more shadowy and no particular shape, so it
> apparently hasn't ossified yet. But the vet said it should be clear
> liquid there. I'm not sure of the cause--he said it could be from
> chronic injury (which I don't know how would have happened) or just
> osteoarthritis. I'm worried that not much can be done for her and even
> though she was running and jumping normally a couple of months ago, he
> said she won't ever be able to use her knees normally again. He said
> there really isn't a surgical option for cats since it tends to make
> things worse rather than better. For now he said just to keep her on
> the Cosequin. She doesn't seem to be in much pain except when she
> climbs the stairs, so he didn't want to prescribe an anti-inflammatory
> until she gets worse.

You might ask about Adequan. I knew a lady with a horse that had
ringbone which caused bad arthtritis in one joint. She got a monthly
injection that keept him pretty much pain free and able to move around.
It won't cure the problem, but it may give your kitty some relief.

When Maynard got arthritis bad, we did some rearranging of furniture so
that he could get on the bed and other places without help. My sister
actually built a stairway that attached to the bathroom counter so that
he could up there for food. It was pretty plain, nothing fancy, but he
used it all the time. And it was pretty easy to make and cheap.

yngver
August 30th 06, 06:45 PM
wrote:
> yngver wrote:
>
>
> > Just to update, x-rays showed what the vet called "joint mice", also
> > called osteochondritis dissecans, which is when bits of cartilege
> > crumble off and ossify. There is a solid looking oblong one in one knee
> > joint and the other is more shadowy and no particular shape, so it
> > apparently hasn't ossified yet. But the vet said it should be clear
> > liquid there. I'm not sure of the cause--he said it could be from
> > chronic injury (which I don't know how would have happened) or just
> > osteoarthritis. I'm worried that not much can be done for her and even
> > though she was running and jumping normally a couple of months ago, he
> > said she won't ever be able to use her knees normally again. He said
> > there really isn't a surgical option for cats since it tends to make
> > things worse rather than better. For now he said just to keep her on
> > the Cosequin. She doesn't seem to be in much pain except when she
> > climbs the stairs, so he didn't want to prescribe an anti-inflammatory
> > until she gets worse.
>
> You might ask about Adequan. I knew a lady with a horse that had
> ringbone which caused bad arthtritis in one joint. She got a monthly
> injection that keept him pretty much pain free and able to move around.
> It won't cure the problem, but it may give your kitty some relief.
>
> When Maynard got arthritis bad, we did some rearranging of furniture so
> that he could get on the bed and other places without help. My sister
> actually built a stairway that attached to the bathroom counter so that
> he could up there for food. It was pretty plain, nothing fancy, but he
> used it all the time. And it was pretty easy to make and cheap.

Thanks. I looked up Adequan online and since it says it may help
rebuild cartilege, I think I'll ask our vet about it. Our cat seems to
be doing better now on the Cosequin but the vet said she doesn't appear
to have a lot of inflammation. And none of these treatments would get
rid of the loose bodies in the joint, as far as I know. We are waiting
to hear back from the orthopedic surgeon to find out if surgery to
remove the loose pieces is an option. Our vet originally said he didn't
think that kind of surgery would help, but he said he would consult the
orthopedic surgeon, who presumably knows more about this kind of thing.
>From what I've read, when dogs develop "loose bodies" or "joint mice"
surgery is common, and the dog usually regains full use of the joint.
If anything can be done, we'll do it rather than have our cat
struggling up the stairs or to get on the bed for the rest of her life.

I did place an alpine scratcher (those ramp-like cardboard scratchers)
next to the bed and after a day or so she figured out the purpose, and
she uses it now both to get on and off the bed. In fact, it is
apparently so handy our other lazy cat with perfectly fine joints and
the ability to jump at least six feet high if she wants to has started
walking up the ramp to get on the bed.
-yngver