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View Full Version : Re: 10 y.o. cat, acute ataxia, please help w/ 2nd vet visit


August 14th 06, 01:25 PM
Not sure about cat anatomy, but two places illness can cause havoc on
humans would be thyroid and gall bladder, so check both. Doctors often
don't do that, so maybe vets are the same way.
***
kmh wrote:
> Greetings,
>
> On Saturday I was upset to hear my 10-year-old cat crying and I found him
> lying in the hallway, barely moving, except for his head which he'd hold up
> to look at us and meow at us. At first I thought he broke a bone. We
> scrambled around to get ready to get to a vet and in the meantime, after
> about 10 minutes of not moving, he did eventually walk up the stairs to
> hide under the bed, but he was very uncoordinated and slow. We took the
> bed apart and got him into his carrier, and about 30 minutes later we were
> at the vet. (Usually we go to closer vets but this one was who was open on
> Saturday).
>
> The vet said he was not injured that he could tell, but what we were seeing
> was ataxia. My cat was observed walking on the floor, and then the vet
> pulled on his legs to check for injury. It was not trouble with just one
> side. It was both hind and front legs, on both sides. The vet suspected
> that the meowing indicated pain. My cat behaved very well during this vet
> trip, which is only remarkable in that he's always a holy terror at the
> vet, and needs three or four people to work on him and pin him down. This
> time my cat was actually headbutting me on the vet table and letting the
> vet stroke him.
>
> His heart rate was checked and the vet said his eyes looked okay. Here's
> where I'm a little uncomfortable: When the vet heard that we have two
> cats, he immediately seemed pleased and optimistic. He said that in the
> wild when there are cat fights, it is very common to have the losing cat go
> out of sorts and ataxic. It would explain the pain he suspected as well.
> My cat got two pain shots--one lasts 1-2 days and the other lasts 5 days.
>
> He said to call if things get worse over the next couple of days, but to
> give my cat about five days to be normal again.
>
> I don't think many people would blame me for wanting a more thorough
> checkup, even if my cat "looks better" i.e. seems recovered by Wednesday.
> So tomorrow (Monday) I want to try to arrange something more thorough:
> bloodwork, X-rays, blood pressure check, whatever is applicable. I don't
> want him to have some kind of time bomb problem where he can "look great"
> and then suddenly I find him lying on the floor very sick.
>
> About the ataxia: It was quite acute, and by the evening he seemed 90%
> coordinated again. He moved carefully and slowly. By this morning he
> almost looked normal; I don't notice any ataxia. He has a little spring to
> his step when he goes up the stairs, but he's careful and slower going down
> them, and is slow walking about, but maybe he's groggy from the meds.
>
> He's eaten, but not much in the way of actual cat food. He licked the sauce
> off of the food he got but we had to coax him to eat something, with a bit
> of turkey meat and hamburger. Again, it could be the meds. But he's
> getting a little bit into his stomach and isn't rejecting food entirely.
>
> About his history: He has seemed otherwise healthy, although come to think
> of it I have noticed a little bit of twitching sometimes when he lies down.
> It's not dreaming, because he does it while he's still awake, but it looks
> similar to what they do when they dream. He got a little scratch in his
> eye a few weeks ago and got an Rx of eyedrops for that, and it was better
> after just a couple days. Behavior-wise, in the last maybe 7-8 months, he
> has turned from a cat who slept at the foot of the bed and didn't go much
> for cuddles, to a cat who comes up for cuddle sessions whenever I'm in bed
> (reading or sleeping). Lately we've had nights where he woke me up several
> times through the night, even meowing for me to get up and scratch him, and
> he'll sleep by my head/chest which is unusual, like he's making up for 9
> years of lost cuddling time. He does the yowling-at-night routine but he's
> pretty much always done that. He is castrated (testicles removed) since he
> was 6 mos. old.
>
> He's an indoor cat and we take him out occasionally on a leash, which makes
> him very happy, but his only contact with other cats is that with my second
> cat, who stays indoors.
>
> That's about all I can think of. Can anyone give me advice for making the
> most out of my next vet visit? I very much want serious illnesses ruled
> out so we can all rest easier. I don't much like this "wait and see" way
> of doing things if it's at all preventable.
>
> Thanks,
> kmh
>
> (Sorry if double-posted. My news server said my first post didn't succeed.)