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Patty
May 12th 07, 10:33 PM
A couple years ago, Rusty was diagnosed with very early renal difficulties.
I don't want to say failure, because his kidneys have not failed yet. He
is 16 years old now. These are his new numbers:

BUN: 30 - Lab Normal: 16-36 mg/dL
CREA: 3.5 - Lab Normal: 0.8-2.4 mg/dL (up from 2.9 in February)
Ca: 10.5 - Lab Normal: 7.8-11.3 mg/dL
PHOS: 4 - Lab Normal: 3.1-7.5 mg/dL
Na: 166 - Lab Normal: 150-165 mmol/L
K: 4.4 - Lab Normal: 3.5-5.8 mmol/L
Cl: 126 - Lab Normal: 112-129 mmol/L
Baro: 740.5 (no Lab Normal reported)

He seems to be doing fine, eating Purina NF kidney food. My vet suggested
considering Sub-Q fluids twice per week, but isn't it a little too soon for
that? Rusty is not going to be easy with this, he can't even sit still
long enough to have his heart listened to, how am I going to get him to do
Sub-Q fluids? How long does it take to do them?

I am so new to this. Thanks so much!

Patty

cindys
May 13th 07, 04:07 PM
"Patty" > wrote in message
...
>A couple years ago, Rusty was diagnosed with very early renal difficulties.
> I don't want to say failure, because his kidneys have not failed yet. He
> is 16 years old now. These are his new numbers:
>
> BUN: 30 - Lab Normal: 16-36 mg/dL
> CREA: 3.5 - Lab Normal: 0.8-2.4 mg/dL (up from 2.9 in February)
> Ca: 10.5 - Lab Normal: 7.8-11.3 mg/dL
> PHOS: 4 - Lab Normal: 3.1-7.5 mg/dL
> Na: 166 - Lab Normal: 150-165 mmol/L
> K: 4.4 - Lab Normal: 3.5-5.8 mmol/L
> Cl: 126 - Lab Normal: 112-129 mmol/L
> Baro: 740.5 (no Lab Normal reported)
>
> He seems to be doing fine, eating Purina NF kidney food. My vet suggested
> considering Sub-Q fluids twice per week, but isn't it a little too soon
> for
> that? Rusty is not going to be easy with this, he can't even sit still
> long enough to have his heart listened to, how am I going to get him to do
> Sub-Q fluids? How long does it take to do them?
>
> I am so new to this. Thanks so much!
----------
Patty, my vet also suggested the subcu fluids (once or twice weekly). So
far, I have done them once (at the vet office with the technician coaching
me). I haven't attempted it at home yet. This seems to be what many vets
recommend, although when Phil responded to the same question regarding my
cat, it seemed that he was kind of against the idea because he said it may
put a strain on the cat's heart. My vet agreed that we should limit them to
only once or twice a week and not more than 100 cc at a time. She also said
that it wasn't worth doing if it was going to be a huge struggle with my cat
such that it was ruining my relationship with him. I think it's worth noting
that my cat has a preexisting heart problem. So, this can make a difference.

Phil emphasized to me that the cat should have potassium supplementation
because even though Alex's numbers for the blood potassium were within
normal range (as are your kitty's), potassium is being lost from the
tissues. He also recommended Omega-3 supplementation (from a fish source not
vegetable source). My vet was ambivalent about the potassium
supplementation, stating that it was really unnecessary at this point (the
second opinion vet agreed with the first one), but nevertheless, they both
agreed that as long as the cat is urinating copiously (which mine is), it
can't hurt. The risk would be if the cat weren't urinating too much, then
you could be dealing with hyperkalemia (too much potassium which would be
bad for the heart). I took Phil's advice on this one because any human for
whom a doctor prescribes a diuretic (increases urination to eliminate fluid
retention) is immediately told "make sure you eat a banana every day" (full
of potassium) or is given potassium supplementation outright. Well, Alex
isn't going to eat a banana, so I'm supplementing him with a veterinary
potassium/vitamin B compound prescribed by the veterinarian and available
only at the veterinary office ($27 per tube).

I also have omega-3 capsules, which can be opened up and squirted on his
food (they are a fishy-tasting liquid inside). This is also from the
veterinarian (around $6 or $7 for a bottle of 30 capsules).

The other thing you need to watch is the phosphorous. If the cat's
phosphorous goes above normal, you will need a phosphorous binder. Maalox is
a phosphorous binder, and I think it is used for cats, but I'm not sure how
much. I haven't crossed this bridge yet, and you kitty's phoshorous seems to
be within normal limits as well.

I also give Alex a 5 mg dose of Pepcid every day. It's the human version
that I buy over the counter at the drugstore. I chop up a 20-mg pill into
four parts. I am told it also comes in 10 mg size (I just happened to
already have some of the 20 mg pills in my house), which would probably be
easier to chop. The purpose ofthe Pepcid is to increase the cat's appetite.
Sometimes, they are nauseous from being uremic (due to the kidney
dysfunction). The Pepcid helps with this. The cat can have 2.5 mg to 5 mg
per day but should never have more than 5 mg in a given day. Again, ask your
vet.

Ask your vet about all of these things. And I just want to say that Phil was
a tremendous help, and I learned a lot from him, and because of him, I knew
what questions to ask the veterinarian. I am very greatful for all his help,
but I know he is busy with his colonies, so I am passing along Phil's advice
to you (not as good as if Phil answered, but hopefully accurate)
Best regards,
---Cindy S.

Patty
May 13th 07, 04:37 PM
On Sun, 13 May 2007 11:07:15 -0400, cindys wrote:
> ----------
> Patty, my vet also suggested the subcu fluids (once or twice weekly). So
> far, I have done them once (at the vet office with the technician coaching
> me). I haven't attempted it at home yet. This seems to be what many vets
> recommend, although when Phil responded to the same question regarding my
> cat, it seemed that he was kind of against the idea because he said it may
> put a strain on the cat's heart. My vet agreed that we should limit them to
> only once or twice a week and not more than 100 cc at a time. She also said
> that it wasn't worth doing if it was going to be a huge struggle with my cat
> such that it was ruining my relationship with him. I think it's worth noting
> that my cat has a preexisting heart problem. So, this can make a difference.

This is all basically what my vet said as well. She believes that quality
of life and happiness for all concerned is just as important as prolonging
life. That's one of the reasons I like her real well. As a person, I
would not want someone going through a lot of difficult measures to keep me
alive if my life quality is diminished.

> Phil emphasized to me that the cat should have potassium supplementation
> because even though Alex's numbers for the blood potassium were within
> normal range (as are your kitty's), potassium is being lost from the
> tissues. He also recommended Omega-3 supplementation (from a fish source not
> vegetable source). My vet was ambivalent about the potassium
> supplementation, stating that it was really unnecessary at this point (the
> second opinion vet agreed with the first one), but nevertheless, they both
> agreed that as long as the cat is urinating copiously (which mine is), it
> can't hurt. The risk would be if the cat weren't urinating too much, then
> you could be dealing with hyperkalemia (too much potassium which would be
> bad for the heart). I took Phil's advice on this one because any human for
> whom a doctor prescribes a diuretic (increases urination to eliminate fluid
> retention) is immediately told "make sure you eat a banana every day" (full
> of potassium) or is given potassium supplementation outright. Well, Alex
> isn't going to eat a banana, so I'm supplementing him with a veterinary
> potassium/vitamin B compound prescribed by the veterinarian and available
> only at the veterinary office ($27 per tube).

I remember reading your's and Phil's posts, but I didn't remember the
condition your cat was in and how it compares to where Rusty is now.
Interesting to note, when Rusty was first diagnosed, his CREA was at 4. I
began feeding him Science Diet k/d at the time and his number dropped to 3
(this was according to the tests conducted by my vet at that time). That's
all I did, switch foods. So, in February he was still not bad, 2.9 but my
current vet was concerned that it went up to 3.5 in 3 months time. He does
not appear to be sick, he still carries on his regular activites, he's
allowed outside and I've watched him even stalk squirrels, he always loved
to hunt when he was younger.

> I also have omega-3 capsules, which can be opened up and squirted on his
> food (they are a fishy-tasting liquid inside). This is also from the
> veterinarian (around $6 or $7 for a bottle of 30 capsules).

I can ask about these. Can you just purchase fish oil caps at the drug
store or do they need to be from a vet?

> The other thing you need to watch is the phosphorous. If the cat's
> phosphorous goes above normal, you will need a phosphorous binder. Maalox is
> a phosphorous binder, and I think it is used for cats, but I'm not sure how
> much. I haven't crossed this bridge yet, and you kitty's phoshorous seems to
> be within normal limits as well.

Yes, that's why I insisted that all his numbers be checked. I wanted to be
sure that he wasn't getting out of whack too badly yet.

> I also give Alex a 5 mg dose of Pepcid every day. It's the human version
> that I buy over the counter at the drugstore. I chop up a 20-mg pill into
> four parts. I am told it also comes in 10 mg size (I just happened to
> already have some of the 20 mg pills in my house), which would probably be
> easier to chop. The purpose ofthe Pepcid is to increase the cat's appetite.
> Sometimes, they are nauseous from being uremic (due to the kidney
> dysfunction). The Pepcid helps with this. The cat can have 2.5 mg to 5 mg
> per day but should never have more than 5 mg in a given day. Again, ask your
> vet.

I used to give pepcid to Grady, my other cat who passed away in January,
but that was mostly because he was vomiting frequently. Not from renal
failure, but he had liver problems. I'm not sure if the Pepcid really
helped but I was giving him 2.5 mg twice per day. When Grady was sick and I
asked my vet about the Pepcid she told me that it certainly wouldn't hurt
and might help.

> Ask your vet about all of these things. And I just want to say that Phil was
> a tremendous help, and I learned a lot from him, and because of him, I knew
> what questions to ask the veterinarian. I am very greatful for all his help,
> but I know he is busy with his colonies, so I am passing along Phil's advice
> to you (not as good as if Phil answered, but hopefully accurate)
> Best regards,
> ---Cindy S.

Thanks, Cindy. I appreciate the response. And, I added Phil on the
subject because I know how learned he is about CRF. I would also trust his
judgment as well.

Patty

22brix
May 14th 07, 03:26 PM
"Patty" > wrote in message
...
>A couple years ago, Rusty was diagnosed with very early renal difficulties.
> I don't want to say failure, because his kidneys have not failed yet. He
> is 16 years old now. These are his new numbers:
>
> BUN: 30 - Lab Normal: 16-36 mg/dL
> CREA: 3.5 - Lab Normal: 0.8-2.4 mg/dL (up from 2.9 in February)
> Ca: 10.5 - Lab Normal: 7.8-11.3 mg/dL
> PHOS: 4 - Lab Normal: 3.1-7.5 mg/dL
> Na: 166 - Lab Normal: 150-165 mmol/L
> K: 4.4 - Lab Normal: 3.5-5.8 mmol/L
> Cl: 126 - Lab Normal: 112-129 mmol/L
> Baro: 740.5 (no Lab Normal reported)
>
> He seems to be doing fine, eating Purina NF kidney food. My vet suggested
> considering Sub-Q fluids twice per week, but isn't it a little too soon
> for
> that? Rusty is not going to be easy with this, he can't even sit still
> long enough to have his heart listened to, how am I going to get him to do
> Sub-Q fluids? How long does it take to do them?
>
> I am so new to this. Thanks so much!
>
> Patty

Hi Patty,

My cat Molly was diagnosed with chronic renal failure last summer; we
started giving her sub-q fluids right away but she was dehydrated and her
lab values were more abnormal than Rusty's. She really wasn't feeling well.
The fluids seemed to help her a lot but it sounds like she was sicker than
Rusty is now. As far as giving fluids, she was a dream to work with. She
was always a very mellow cat and the whole procedure took maybe three or
four minutes. I'd hang the bag of fluids on a nail above the door and just
let gravity work. She would just sit there and a lot of the time would purr
during the whole process.

I am currently giving sub-q fluids to another cat, Tortle, who is much more
resistant to the process! It's a two person job and we try to do it as fast
as possible. My vet showed us how to draw up the fluids in a couple of
large syringes and we're pushing the fluids in as fast as we can. As much
as
Tortle hates it she is tolerating it much better than she did originally.
We're hoping we can discontinue them as soon as possible. When we first
brought her home from the hospital we were giving her 100ml daily to keep
the kidneys flushed (she had/has kidney stones and had a blocked ureter) and
now are giving them every three days.

Not all cats will tolerate getting fluids and I really agree that quality of
life is the most important thing. If giving them fluids (or any other
treatment) is making them that unhappy it's probably not worth it. Molly
was so easy and Tortle is hopefully on them only for a little longer.

I wish you and Rusty the best.

Bonnie

PS I'm not sure that giving fish oil is the same as giving omega-3. I would
check with your vet first. I was giving Welactin (a vet supplied Omega-3
liquid) to Molly and it isn't the same as the fish oil I take.

Another PS: You might want to ask your vet about Azodyl. It's a probiotic
that helps with azotemia and seems to be effective in lowering the BUN and
Creatinine levels. The main draw back is that it's most effective in
capsule form and it's a huge capsule! It seems to have really helped with
Tortle. I asked Phil about Azodyl and he said that it could also be
sprinkled on the food but isn't as effective that way.

Patty
May 14th 07, 08:14 PM
On Mon, 14 May 2007 07:26:47 -0700, 22brix wrote:

> "Patty" > wrote in message
> ...
>>A couple years ago, Rusty was diagnosed with very early renal difficulties.
>> I don't want to say failure, because his kidneys have not failed yet. He
>> is 16 years old now. These are his new numbers:
>>
>> BUN: 30 - Lab Normal: 16-36 mg/dL
>> CREA: 3.5 - Lab Normal: 0.8-2.4 mg/dL (up from 2.9 in February)
>> Ca: 10.5 - Lab Normal: 7.8-11.3 mg/dL
>> PHOS: 4 - Lab Normal: 3.1-7.5 mg/dL
>> Na: 166 - Lab Normal: 150-165 mmol/L
>> K: 4.4 - Lab Normal: 3.5-5.8 mmol/L
>> Cl: 126 - Lab Normal: 112-129 mmol/L
>> Baro: 740.5 (no Lab Normal reported)
>>
>> He seems to be doing fine, eating Purina NF kidney food. My vet suggested
>> considering Sub-Q fluids twice per week, but isn't it a little too soon
>> for
>> that? Rusty is not going to be easy with this, he can't even sit still
>> long enough to have his heart listened to, how am I going to get him to do
>> Sub-Q fluids? How long does it take to do them?
>>
>> I am so new to this. Thanks so much!
>>
>> Patty
>
> Hi Patty,
>
> My cat Molly was diagnosed with chronic renal failure last summer; we
> started giving her sub-q fluids right away but she was dehydrated and her
> lab values were more abnormal than Rusty's. She really wasn't feeling well.
> The fluids seemed to help her a lot but it sounds like she was sicker than
> Rusty is now. As far as giving fluids, she was a dream to work with. She
> was always a very mellow cat and the whole procedure took maybe three or
> four minutes. I'd hang the bag of fluids on a nail above the door and just
> let gravity work. She would just sit there and a lot of the time would purr
> during the whole process.
>
> I am currently giving sub-q fluids to another cat, Tortle, who is much more
> resistant to the process! It's a two person job and we try to do it as fast
> as possible. My vet showed us how to draw up the fluids in a couple of
> large syringes and we're pushing the fluids in as fast as we can. As much
> as
> Tortle hates it she is tolerating it much better than she did originally.
> We're hoping we can discontinue them as soon as possible. When we first
> brought her home from the hospital we were giving her 100ml daily to keep
> the kidneys flushed (she had/has kidney stones and had a blocked ureter) and
> now are giving them every three days.
>
> Not all cats will tolerate getting fluids and I really agree that quality of
> life is the most important thing. If giving them fluids (or any other
> treatment) is making them that unhappy it's probably not worth it. Molly
> was so easy and Tortle is hopefully on them only for a little longer.
>
> I wish you and Rusty the best.
>
> Bonnie
>
> PS I'm not sure that giving fish oil is the same as giving omega-3. I would
> check with your vet first. I was giving Welactin (a vet supplied Omega-3
> liquid) to Molly and it isn't the same as the fish oil I take.
>
> Another PS: You might want to ask your vet about Azodyl. It's a probiotic
> that helps with azotemia and seems to be effective in lowering the BUN and
> Creatinine levels. The main draw back is that it's most effective in
> capsule form and it's a huge capsule! It seems to have really helped with
> Tortle. I asked Phil about Azodyl and he said that it could also be
> sprinkled on the food but isn't as effective that way.
>

Thank you so much, Bonnie. So, it only takes a few minutes to do the
fluids? That's probably not so bad, if I caught him at an "I want to lie
in your lap and be petted" time, he might not even resist. In fact, I now
trim his toe nails a bit because he doesn't wear them down anymore and when
you can hear them clicking on the hard wood floor, they begin to get caught
in everything. I would never have thought I could do this with him in the
past. Guess old age is beginning to slow him down a bit.

I will ask about the B-vitamins, Omega-3 and Azodyl. The capsule may be a
problem getting down him, though, unless there was a way I can mix it in a
treat.

He doesn't appear to be sick at all. I tried doing the pull on the neck
skin thing to test to see if he's dehydrated, but he's got long fur and
it's hard to tell, but it looks like it pretty much just pops back into
place. I don't think he's in any crucial state yet. My husband just
believes that we should let him eat what he wants and enjoy the time he has
left without causing him a lot of stress. After just losing my other
furbaby in January, it's going to be hard to lose Rusty too. We have
bonded a lot since Grady's death. I think because we both miss him so
much.

Patty

cindys
May 14th 07, 09:03 PM
"Patty" > wrote in message
...

snip
>
> He doesn't appear to be sick at all. I tried doing the pull on the neck
> skin thing to test to see if he's dehydrated, but he's got long fur and
> it's hard to tell, but it looks like it pretty much just pops back into
> place. I don't think he's in any crucial state yet. My husband just
> believes that we should let him eat what he wants and enjoy the time he
> has
> left without causing him a lot of stress. After just losing my other
> furbaby in January, it's going to be hard to lose Rusty too. We have
> bonded a lot since Grady's death. I think because we both miss him so
> much.
----------
Patty, Alex's numbers are about the same as Rusty's. I don't know how much
Rusty is urinating, but if it is a lot, I would urge you to consider the
supplemental potassium, even though his potassium blood levels are normal
(as are Alex's). The good news is that Rusty may have a lot more life in him
than you think. CRF can go very slowly. Molly lived over two years beyond
her initial diagnosis, and she wasn't diagnosed until she was already
showing visible signs of CRF(sudden weight loss), so she could have been
sick for quite a while before diagnosis. Alex was diagnosed at least six
months ago, and he's looking great. In fact, he's actually gained half a
pound since last spring (since I've been giving him Pepcid and feeding him
canned food which he practically inhales). I will be bringing him back for
follow-up blood work at some point within the next month. But my point is
that if you do the right things (which it sounds like you are), you could
potentially have Rusty for several more years. From the numbers, he's still
in the early stages, and from the sounds of it, he's doing fine. You have
every reason to keep a positive outlook.
Best regards,
---Cindy S.

22brix
May 15th 07, 02:42 AM
"Patty" > wrote in message
...
> On Mon, 14 May 2007 07:26:47 -0700, 22brix wrote:
>
>> "Patty" > wrote in message
>> ...
>>>A couple years ago, Rusty was diagnosed with very early renal
>>>difficulties.
>>> I don't want to say failure, because his kidneys have not failed yet.
>>> He
>>> is 16 years old now. These are his new numbers:
>>>
>>> BUN: 30 - Lab Normal: 16-36 mg/dL
>>> CREA: 3.5 - Lab Normal: 0.8-2.4 mg/dL (up from 2.9 in February)
>>> Ca: 10.5 - Lab Normal: 7.8-11.3 mg/dL
>>> PHOS: 4 - Lab Normal: 3.1-7.5 mg/dL
>>> Na: 166 - Lab Normal: 150-165 mmol/L
>>> K: 4.4 - Lab Normal: 3.5-5.8 mmol/L
>>> Cl: 126 - Lab Normal: 112-129 mmol/L
>>> Baro: 740.5 (no Lab Normal reported)
>>>
>>> He seems to be doing fine, eating Purina NF kidney food. My vet
>>> suggested
>>> considering Sub-Q fluids twice per week, but isn't it a little too soon
>>> for
>>> that? Rusty is not going to be easy with this, he can't even sit still
>>> long enough to have his heart listened to, how am I going to get him to
>>> do
>>> Sub-Q fluids? How long does it take to do them?
>>>
>>> I am so new to this. Thanks so much!
>>>
>>> Patty
>>
>> Hi Patty,
>>
>> My cat Molly was diagnosed with chronic renal failure last summer; we
>> started giving her sub-q fluids right away but she was dehydrated and her
>> lab values were more abnormal than Rusty's. She really wasn't feeling
>> well.
>> The fluids seemed to help her a lot but it sounds like she was sicker
>> than
>> Rusty is now. As far as giving fluids, she was a dream to work with.
>> She
>> was always a very mellow cat and the whole procedure took maybe three or
>> four minutes. I'd hang the bag of fluids on a nail above the door and
>> just
>> let gravity work. She would just sit there and a lot of the time would
>> purr
>> during the whole process.
>>
>> I am currently giving sub-q fluids to another cat, Tortle, who is much
>> more
>> resistant to the process! It's a two person job and we try to do it as
>> fast
>> as possible. My vet showed us how to draw up the fluids in a couple of
>> large syringes and we're pushing the fluids in as fast as we can. As
>> much
>> as
>> Tortle hates it she is tolerating it much better than she did originally.
>> We're hoping we can discontinue them as soon as possible. When we first
>> brought her home from the hospital we were giving her 100ml daily to keep
>> the kidneys flushed (she had/has kidney stones and had a blocked ureter)
>> and
>> now are giving them every three days.
>>
>> Not all cats will tolerate getting fluids and I really agree that quality
>> of
>> life is the most important thing. If giving them fluids (or any other
>> treatment) is making them that unhappy it's probably not worth it. Molly
>> was so easy and Tortle is hopefully on them only for a little longer.
>>
>> I wish you and Rusty the best.
>>
>> Bonnie
>>
>> PS I'm not sure that giving fish oil is the same as giving omega-3. I
>> would
>> check with your vet first. I was giving Welactin (a vet supplied Omega-3
>> liquid) to Molly and it isn't the same as the fish oil I take.
>>
>> Another PS: You might want to ask your vet about Azodyl. It's a
>> probiotic
>> that helps with azotemia and seems to be effective in lowering the BUN
>> and
>> Creatinine levels. The main draw back is that it's most effective in
>> capsule form and it's a huge capsule! It seems to have really helped
>> with
>> Tortle. I asked Phil about Azodyl and he said that it could also be
>> sprinkled on the food but isn't as effective that way.
>>
>
> Thank you so much, Bonnie. So, it only takes a few minutes to do the
> fluids? That's probably not so bad, if I caught him at an "I want to lie
> in your lap and be petted" time, he might not even resist. In fact, I now
> trim his toe nails a bit because he doesn't wear them down anymore and
> when
> you can hear them clicking on the hard wood floor, they begin to get
> caught
> in everything. I would never have thought I could do this with him in the
> past. Guess old age is beginning to slow him down a bit.

It doesn't take that long for the fluids to go in but my two cats had vastly
different responses to the needle. Molly didn't seem to feel much of
anything and at the most would just flinch a little. Tortle absolutely
hates the needle--I don't know if it really hurts that much or if she's just
extra-sensitive. The needles are fairly large--I used 18 gauge needles with
Molly and am trying 20 gauge needles with Tortle.

>
> I will ask about the B-vitamins, Omega-3 and Azodyl. The capsule may be a
> problem getting down him, though, unless there was a way I can mix it in a
> treat.

I asked Phil about Azodyl--he said it could be mixed in with food, it's just
not as effective. I have been surprised Tortle has been so easy to pill. I
feed her right after I give her the capsule and sometimes she just purrs the
entire time I'm stuffing it down her throat.

>
> He doesn't appear to be sick at all. I tried doing the pull on the neck
> skin thing to test to see if he's dehydrated, but he's got long fur and
> it's hard to tell, but it looks like it pretty much just pops back into
> place. I don't think he's in any crucial state yet. My husband just
> believes that we should let him eat what he wants and enjoy the time he
> has
> left without causing him a lot of stress. After just losing my other
> furbaby in January, it's going to be hard to lose Rusty too. We have
> bonded a lot since Grady's death. I think because we both miss him so
> much.
>
> Patty

Rusty sounds like he's doing pretty good. I totally agree with Cindy--some
cats live for several years after a diagnosis of CRF. I'm sorry about
Grady--we had to put Molly to sleep in April and I know what you mean about
bonding with Rusty. It's sort of the same with Tortle. It's hard to be
dealing with losing one and having another to worry about.

It's good he is willing to eat the kidney food. We tried several different
kidney diets with Molly and she didn't really like any of them. It's good
if you can encourage him to drink more. We have two different types of cat
fountains and my cats do seem to drink more from them.

This website has some helpful information about CRF.

http://www.felinecrf.com/managd.htm

All the best,
Bonnie

Patty
May 15th 07, 03:14 AM
On Mon, 14 May 2007 18:42:14 -0700, 22brix wrote:

> Rusty sounds like he's doing pretty good. I totally agree with Cindy--some
> cats live for several years after a diagnosis of CRF. I'm sorry about
> Grady--we had to put Molly to sleep in April and I know what you mean about
> bonding with Rusty. It's sort of the same with Tortle. It's hard to be
> dealing with losing one and having another to worry about.
>
> It's good he is willing to eat the kidney food. We tried several different
> kidney diets with Molly and she didn't really like any of them. It's good
> if you can encourage him to drink more. We have two different types of cat
> fountains and my cats do seem to drink more from them.
>
> This website has some helpful information about CRF.
>
> http://www.felinecrf.com/managd.htm
>
> All the best,
> Bonnie

Thanks, Bonnie. I have been trying to get Rusty to drink more. I found
that if I put some fresh water (we only use bottled water for drinking in
my home) in a small dish and add a couple drops of half and half to it, he
will lap it right down. I'm hoping giving him tiny amounts of half and
half are not bad. I've also started giving him 1/4 Pepcid each day. Rusty
tends to like dry food, he always has. He also tends to eat more during
the night because I think that's his more active time of day. He sleeps
more during the daytime hours.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed. I don't want him to feel bad, but I also
don't want to get into a stressful situation either.

Patty

mariib via CatKB.com
May 15th 07, 06:54 AM
22brix wrote:
>>>>A couple years ago, Rusty was diagnosed with very early renal
>>>>difficulties.
>[quoted text clipped - 90 lines]
>> in everything. I would never have thought I could do this with him in the
>> past. Guess old age is beginning to slow him down a bit.
>
>It doesn't take that long for the fluids to go in but my two cats had vastly
>different responses to the needle. Molly didn't seem to feel much of
>anything and at the most would just flinch a little. Tortle absolutely
>hates the needle--I don't know if it really hurts that much or if she's just
>extra-sensitive. The needles are fairly large--I used 18 gauge needles with
>Molly and am trying 20 gauge needles with Tortle.
>
>> I will ask about the B-vitamins, Omega-3 and Azodyl. The capsule may be a
>> problem getting down him, though, unless there was a way I can mix it in a
>> treat.
>
>I asked Phil about Azodyl--he said it could be mixed in with food, it's just
>not as effective. I have been surprised Tortle has been so easy to pill. I
>feed her right after I give her the capsule and sometimes she just purrs the
>entire time I'm stuffing it down her throat.
>
>> He doesn't appear to be sick at all. I tried doing the pull on the neck
>> skin thing to test to see if he's dehydrated, but he's got long fur and
>[quoted text clipped - 8 lines]
>>
>> Patty
>
>Rusty sounds like he's doing pretty good. I totally agree with Cindy--some
>cats live for several years after a diagnosis of CRF. I'm sorry about
>Grady--we had to put Molly to sleep in April and I know what you mean about
>bonding with Rusty. It's sort of the same with Tortle. It's hard to be
>dealing with losing one and having another to worry about.
>
>This website has some helpful information about CRF.
>
>http://www.felinecrf.com/managd.htm
>
>All the best,
>Bonnie

Yes, it can be done & some cats can live for a number of years with CRF (and
thyroid failure). I kept my cat Ginger going for 4 years or so after his
initial diagnosis but I kept him alive too long. Sure I knew how to medicate
him & give him fluids & stimulate his appetite or force feed too many times,
but he hated the regimen, hated the pills, hated getting fluids. He was such
a gentle handsome big orange boy before he got sick. I wasn't helping him at
all the last 1 - 2 years although I didn't realize it until a couple weeks
before I had him put to sleep.

This is hindsight of course, it was only in December last year after I
gathered together all the pictures & slides of my cats - past & present - &
put them up on webshots that I took a good close look at Ginger's pictures
from 1986 until his death in 2002 all at once & saw the deterioration from
1998 thru 2002 & saw what I had put him through. It's not pretty to see, & I
look at them from time to time to remind myself not to play God again with
another animal's life. I'm still not sure how to know when the *time* has
come, but I think I did right by Tigra 2 years ago when she was almost 20 &
had started failing fast.

I'm not trying to be negative or to discourage you from treating your cat at
all - far from it - just posting this as a warning to watch your cat closely
& not to force him to endure what he doesn't want.
M.

you can see the progression of Ginger's illness:
as a kitty http://pets.webshots.com/photo/2727780200050028271kgPnOa
as a young cat http://pets.webshots.com/photo/2230361730050028271ZmFHbU
at 7-1/2 yrs http://pets.webshots.com/photo/2202574600050028271gmiQZN
after 2 yrs with CRF, still OK at 14,
http://pets.webshots.com/photo/2197353460050028271dyEfzg
3 yrs with CRF, not good
http://pets.webshots.com/photo/2361730530050028271AgIizh
4 yrs with CRF, not good
http://pets.webshots.com/photo/2217126600050028271GNLkhV
& the picture following 2 weeks later is awful & I won't post it here.

--
Message posted via http://www.catkb.com

Patty
May 15th 07, 12:59 PM
On Tue, 15 May 2007 05:54:12 GMT, mariib via CatKB.com wrote:
> Yes, it can be done & some cats can live for a number of years with CRF (and
> thyroid failure). I kept my cat Ginger going for 4 years or so after his
> initial diagnosis but I kept him alive too long. Sure I knew how to medicate
> him & give him fluids & stimulate his appetite or force feed too many times,
> but he hated the regimen, hated the pills, hated getting fluids. He was such
> a gentle handsome big orange boy before he got sick. I wasn't helping him at
> all the last 1 - 2 years although I didn't realize it until a couple weeks
> before I had him put to sleep.
>
> This is hindsight of course, it was only in December last year after I
> gathered together all the pictures & slides of my cats - past & present - &
> put them up on webshots that I took a good close look at Ginger's pictures
> from 1986 until his death in 2002 all at once & saw the deterioration from
> 1998 thru 2002 & saw what I had put him through. It's not pretty to see, & I
> look at them from time to time to remind myself not to play God again with
> another animal's life. I'm still not sure how to know when the *time* has
> come, but I think I did right by Tigra 2 years ago when she was almost 20 &
> had started failing fast.
>
> I'm not trying to be negative or to discourage you from treating your cat at
> all - far from it - just posting this as a warning to watch your cat closely
> & not to force him to endure what he doesn't want.
> M.


Thank you so much. I know exactly what you're talking about. I lost my
Grady in January after he began deteriorating rapidly. He didn't have CRF,
we never did get a definitive diagnosis, all the tests came out
inconclusive, but his symptoms hinted at some type of problem with his
liver or liver cancer. He was a large, robust cat, weighing up to 20 lbs
at his healthiest (he was a large cat, not fat). When he got sick, he was
eathing like a horse, wolfing down 2 - 6oz cans of food each day. But, he
was getting nothing from the food. He was a dark gray cat, near the end
his fur had turned a brown color and had gotten very thin, a true sign of
malnutrition. I watched him turn into skin and bones and at the end, he
weighed 9lbs, which still sounds like a lot, but it wasn't for a cat his
size. All his bones jutted out and sometimes when he'd lie down he'd look
malformed because bones stuck out where you had never seen them before. He
vomited bile, not food, frequently and I know he was miserable. He had
little or no energy and didn't do any of the things he enjoyed prevously.
He had been slowly deteriorating over a period of about 2 years and then
got really bad this past winter. He had hardly any muscle left. He was
fur and bones. I finally made the decision and cried for days wondering if
I had done it too soon. It's so hard to know when's the "right time",
isn't it? But, I believe in quality of life. I wouldn't want anyone to
keep me alive if I could no longer enjoy any of the things I liked. And,
all I could think about near the end was that his body was consuming itself
because he was getting nothing from his food. That can't have been a
pleasant experience.

I have a memorial to Grady at http://www.mandakay.com/kitties/Grady.html
only one of the pictures shows how bad he'd gotten, the last one with
Rusty. That was taken last November. I had him pts in January.

I hear so much about people going to great extremes to keep their beloved
pets alive. A friend of mine once said, "Who do we do it for? Is it for
our pet? No, it's for us because we can't let go." I'm sometimes afraid
that people will think ill of me because I will not go through extreme
measures to keep any of them alive. I just want them to have the best,
happiest life they can. And they can't do that when they're sick.

Patty

cindys
May 15th 07, 01:59 PM
"Patty" > wrote in message
.. .

>
> I have a memorial to Grady at http://www.mandakay.com/kitties/Grady.html
> only one of the pictures shows how bad he'd gotten, the last one with
> Rusty. That was taken last November. I had him pts in January.
-----------
What a beautiful tribute and one that made me cry. We had two animals pts in
less than a year (Alvin our dog and Molly our cat). My heart is still
breaking.

With Alvin, I think we waited too long. He was ostensibly healthy, just
getting older (he lived to be nearly 15), but he had an acute event in the
end. We decided to give it a few days to see if he would get better. I
suppose it was anybody's guess, but we brought him home for two more
miserable days and on the final morning, we were watching the clock for the
vet hospital to open so we could have him pts. He was in such bad shape.

With Molly, I thought I did it too soon, although she was in bad shape too.
I had listened to my sister's saga of the heroic measures she had taken to
keep her cats alive and felt guilty for not having done the same. But after
having spent much time on this newsgroup, I'm glad I didn't let it get to
that point with Molly. I think it would have been cruel to wait until she
was in respiratory distress as many people do. My sister's vet had advised
her that it would be the "proper time" to euthanize when her cat went into
respiratory distress, and that was what my sister did. I think that's so
wrong.

I recently saw an old acquaintance at the supermarket who told me she had
been thinking of phoning me for advice (regarding treatment) because one of
her cats was dying from a massive, aggressive tumor. After describing a
little bit about what I had gone through with Alvin and Molly, I told the
woman my advice was to have her kitty pts when it seemed like she was
suffering and not to wait until she was in respiratory distress. I quoted
the words of my vet, which were "The cat isn't going to get any better, and
if she's suffering, it's a kindness to euthanize. She doesn't know she has a
few days or a few weeks left to live before she would have died on her own.
Make sure you're keeping her alive for her and not for you." This woman
didn't like my advice and said "Well, *I* don't think she's suffering that
much, and *I* don't agree with that!" and kind of strutted off. What could I
say?
Best regards,
---Cindy S.

Patty
May 15th 07, 02:34 PM
On Tue, 15 May 2007 08:59:15 -0400, cindys wrote:

> "Patty" > wrote in message
> .. .
>
>>
>> I have a memorial to Grady at http://www.mandakay.com/kitties/Grady.html
>> only one of the pictures shows how bad he'd gotten, the last one with
>> Rusty. That was taken last November. I had him pts in January.
> -----------
> What a beautiful tribute and one that made me cry. We had two animals pts in
> less than a year (Alvin our dog and Molly our cat). My heart is still
> breaking.
>
> With Alvin, I think we waited too long. He was ostensibly healthy, just
> getting older (he lived to be nearly 15), but he had an acute event in the
> end. We decided to give it a few days to see if he would get better. I
> suppose it was anybody's guess, but we brought him home for two more
> miserable days and on the final morning, we were watching the clock for the
> vet hospital to open so we could have him pts. He was in such bad shape.
>
> With Molly, I thought I did it too soon, although she was in bad shape too.
> I had listened to my sister's saga of the heroic measures she had taken to
> keep her cats alive and felt guilty for not having done the same. But after
> having spent much time on this newsgroup, I'm glad I didn't let it get to
> that point with Molly. I think it would have been cruel to wait until she
> was in respiratory distress as many people do. My sister's vet had advised
> her that it would be the "proper time" to euthanize when her cat went into
> respiratory distress, and that was what my sister did. I think that's so
> wrong.
>
> I recently saw an old acquaintance at the supermarket who told me she had
> been thinking of phoning me for advice (regarding treatment) because one of
> her cats was dying from a massive, aggressive tumor. After describing a
> little bit about what I had gone through with Alvin and Molly, I told the
> woman my advice was to have her kitty pts when it seemed like she was
> suffering and not to wait until she was in respiratory distress. I quoted
> the words of my vet, which were "The cat isn't going to get any better, and
> if she's suffering, it's a kindness to euthanize. She doesn't know she has a
> few days or a few weeks left to live before she would have died on her own.
> Make sure you're keeping her alive for her and not for you." This woman
> didn't like my advice and said "Well, *I* don't think she's suffering that
> much, and *I* don't agree with that!" and kind of strutted off. What could I
> say?
> Best regards,
> ---Cindy S.

Oh, Cindy. I feel bad for your acquaintance's cat. My vet also believes
that quality of life is just as important as quanity. And not just the
pet's quality but the whole family's. That's why I like her so much. The
general consensus when I had Grady pts was that he was not going to get
better, he was only going to suffer more than he already had, and my
husband and I would suffer trying to take care of him and watching him
deteriorate even more. I loved that cat. I loved him like he was my
child. I still cry every day over losing him. I miss him so much. But,
keeping him alive would not have made any of that better. I would have
still lost him in the end.

If only they could live healthy for as long as we do.

Best to you always,

Patty

mariib via CatKB.com
May 15th 07, 07:38 PM
Patty wrote:
>> Yes, it can be done & some cats can live for a number of years with CRF (and
>> thyroid failure). I kept my cat Ginger going for 4 years or so after his
>[quoted text clipped - 19 lines]
>> & not to force him to endure what he doesn't want.
>> M.
>
>Thank you so much. I know exactly what you're talking about. I lost my
>Grady in January after he began deteriorating rapidly. He didn't have CRF,
>we never did get a definitive diagnosis, all the tests came out
>inconclusive, but his symptoms hinted at some type of problem with his
>liver or liver cancer. He was a large, robust cat, weighing up to 20 lbs
>at his healthiest (he was a large cat, not fat). When he got sick, he was
>eathing like a horse, wolfing down 2 - 6oz cans of food each day. But, he
>was getting nothing from the food. He was a dark gray cat, near the end
>his fur had turned a brown color and had gotten very thin, a true sign of
>malnutrition. I watched him turn into skin and bones and at the end, he
>weighed 9lbs, which still sounds like a lot, but it wasn't for a cat his
>size. All his bones jutted out and sometimes when he'd lie down he'd look
>malformed because bones stuck out where you had never seen them before. He
>vomited bile, not food, frequently and I know he was miserable. He had
>little or no energy and didn't do any of the things he enjoyed prevously.
>He had been slowly deteriorating over a period of about 2 years and then
>got really bad this past winter. He had hardly any muscle left. He was
>fur and bones. I finally made the decision and cried for days wondering if
>I had done it too soon. It's so hard to know when's the "right time",
>isn't it? But, I believe in quality of life. I wouldn't want anyone to
>keep me alive if I could no longer enjoy any of the things I liked. And,
>all I could think about near the end was that his body was consuming itself
>because he was getting nothing from his food. That can't have been a
>pleasant experience.
>
>I have a memorial to Grady at http://www.mandakay.com/kitties/Grady.html
>only one of the pictures shows how bad he'd gotten, the last one with
>Rusty. That was taken last November. I had him pts in January.
>
>I hear so much about people going to great extremes to keep their beloved
>pets alive. A friend of mine once said, "Who do we do it for? Is it for
>our pet? No, it's for us because we can't let go." I'm sometimes afraid
>that people will think ill of me because I will not go through extreme
>measures to keep any of them alive. I just want them to have the best,
>happiest life they can. And they can't do that when they're sick.
>
>Patty

Grady was a beautiful cat & obviously well-loved. As Cindy has said in the
following post, we should take care to be sure whatever we are doing for our
cats is for them, not for us or because of our unwillingness to let go.
M.

--
Message posted via http://www.catkb.com