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Cold weather and feline heart disease

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  • Catherine Browning
    Hi all, So I m down under and it s getting MIGHTY chilly ... well, I think it s cold anyway. Top temps around 14 celsius or so which I know many people here
    Message 1 of 9 , May 29, 2004
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      Hi all,

      So I'm down under and it's getting MIGHTY chilly ... well, I think
      it's cold anyway. Top temps around 14 celsius or so which I know
      many people here won't think is 'real' winter, but it is for me!

      Anyway, my question ... my four heartsick furbabies still don't know
      they're sick! They're full of energy and just LOVE being outside,
      climbing trees, racing each other and all that cat-stuff which is a
      joy to see given that they're going on for 1 3/4 years now with this
      disease.

      But ... does the cold weather make them more likely to clot? If they
      get chilly, does their blood "thicken" or anything? I'd hate to keep
      them in when they so want to be out, but if it's a choice between
      cranky cats or saddle thrombosis then I know which one I'll choose!

      Thanks!

      Catherine and the fearsome five
      Kitty, Buttons, Patch, Claude and Tuppenny
    • Susan
      ... Catherine, Actually it is the heat that you need to worry about with heart patients. When it is over 85 F I only let mine out after 6 pm. Susan
      Message 2 of 9 , May 29, 2004
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        --- Catherine Browning <cebro@...> wrote:


        >
        > But ... does the cold weather make them more likely
        > to clot? If they
        > get chilly, does their blood "thicken" or anything?
        > I'd hate to keep
        > them in when they so want to be out, but if it's a
        > choice between
        > cranky cats or saddle thrombosis then I know which
        > one I'll choose!

        Catherine,

        Actually it is the heat that you need to worry about
        with heart patients. When it is over 85 F I only let
        mine out after 6 pm.

        Susan




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      • Heather Grace
        Purcy gave me a big scare today. He wanted to go outside and it was only 60 F out, so I let him go outside. When I went to check on him later he was
        Message 3 of 9 , May 29, 2004
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          Purcy gave me a big scare today. He wanted to go outside and it was
          only 60 F out, so I let him go outside. When I went to check on him
          later he was open-mouthed breathing!!! I brought Purcy back in the
          house and into my bedroom where I have an air filter and was about
          ready to take him to the emergency vet. I checked his gums and they
          looked okay. His breathing started to get back to normal shortly
          after. I was sick all day and didn't know how bad the pollen was.
          Last summer my vet warned me about letting Purcy go outside when the
          air quality was bad. Just another thing to think about.

          Heather & Purcy

          =====
          Purcy: Male Himalayan, diagnosed 07-2003 at 6 years of age with HCM
          with severe mitral valve regurgitation and mild left atrial
          enlargement, slight pericardial effusion: grade 3 murmur Left apical
          & grade 2 Right sided systolic murmur, Enalapril Maleate 1.25 mg 1x
          day, Furosemide (Lasix) 6.25 mg 2x day, 1 aspirin 81 mg every three
          days administered via pilling.

          --- In feline-heart@yahoogroups.com, Susan <somnamblst@y...> wrote:
          >
          > Actually it is the heat that you need to worry about
          > with heart patients. When it is over 85 F I only let
          > mine out after 6 pm.
          >
          > Susan
          >
        • Susan
          ... Veterinary cardiologists such as Clarke Atkins do recommend exercise restriction. When it needs to be implemented has been unclear to me. For instance do
          Message 4 of 9 , May 30, 2004
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            --- Catherine Browning <cebro@...> wrote:
            > --- In feline-heart@yahoogroups.com, Susan
            > <somnamblst@y...> wrote:
            > >
            > > --- Catherine Browning <cebro@a...> wrote:
            >
            > [...]
            >
            > > Actually it is the heat that you need to worry
            > about
            > > with heart patients. When it is over 85 F I only
            > let
            > > mine out after 6 pm.
            > >
            > > Susan
            >
            > I did notice that they reacted to the heat over
            > summer ... mostly by
            > just lying around, but Tuppenny is the one I worry
            > about. Her
            > behaviour is different in the daytime to the
            > nighttime ... daylight
            > seems to give her something like a kitty-form of
            > ADHD ... last
            > summer, she just ran and ran around like a
            > jackrabbit then ended up
            > lying on her side panting.

            Veterinary cardiologists such as Clarke Atkins do
            recommend exercise restriction. When it needs to be
            implemented has been unclear to me. For instance do
            we attempt to keep asymptomatic patients quiet. It
            sounds like Tupenny may be one who does not
            self-regulate.

            if the
            > body gets cold
            > then the blood vessels to the extremities constrict
            > to keep the heat
            > close to the vital organs ... if the blood vessels
            > are narrowed,
            > wouldn't that increase the chance of saddle
            > thrombosis???

            The clots come from the left atrium or left ventricle.
            The clots lodge in arteries since right sided heart
            failure is rare in cats. Blood vessels are much
            smaller than arteries so I don't think heat regulating
            constriction would be a factor.
            >
            > Another semi-related problem is that next-door's
            > grey cat (looks a
            > bit like a russian/british blue) keeps coming over
            > and attacking
            > them, and their hearts just RACE.

            If I remember correctly Jen was fostering a dog who
            may have stressed her HCM cat Deagan. Her vet said
            that because the atenolol he is taking is blocking the
            andergenic receptors on his heart, the doggy induced
            release of norepinephrine and epinephrine would not be
            able to stimulate those receptors and raise heart
            rate. Now that is in theory. To be on the safe side
            maybe you can get a squirt gun and teach the grey cat
            that there is something about your territory that is
            most unpleasant.

            Susan









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          • Catherine B
            ... [...] ... That s a good way of describing her behaviour actually ... failure to self- regulate ... I ve no idea though why she s different in the daytime
            Message 5 of 9 , May 30, 2004
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              On 30 May 2004 at 4:11, Susan wrote:
              > --- Catherine Browning <cebro@...> wrote:
              [...]
              > > I did notice that they reacted to the heat over
              > > summer ... mostly by
              > > just lying around, but Tuppenny is the one I worry
              > > about. Her
              > > behaviour is different in the daytime to the
              > > nighttime ... daylight
              > > seems to give her something like a kitty-form of
              > > ADHD ... last
              > > summer, she just ran and ran around like a
              > > jackrabbit then ended up
              > > lying on her side panting.
              >
              > Veterinary cardiologists such as Clarke Atkins do
              > recommend exercise restriction. When it needs to be
              > implemented has been unclear to me. For instance do
              > we attempt to keep asymptomatic patients quiet. It
              > sounds like Tupenny may be one who does not
              > self-regulate.

              That's a good way of describing her behaviour actually ... "failure to self-
              regulate" ... I've no idea though why she's different in the daytime to at
              night. During daylight, she can't be held ... she's just go-go-go! At night
              she's all purrs and kneads and climbs into your lap. Might have to bring
              this up at her next checkup ...

              > if the
              > > body gets cold
              > > then the blood vessels to the extremities constrict
              > > to keep the heat
              > > close to the vital organs ... if the blood vessels
              > > are narrowed,
              > > wouldn't that increase the chance of saddle
              > > thrombosis???
              >
              > The clots come from the left atrium or left ventricle.
              > The clots lodge in arteries since right sided heart
              > failure is rare in cats. Blood vessels are much
              > smaller than arteries so I don't think heat regulating
              > constriction would be a factor.

              Ah, I was thinking of the end-destination of the clot, where I should have
              been thinking of the cause/origin of the clot ... makes sense what you say.

              > > Another semi-related problem is that next-door's
              > > grey cat (looks a
              > > bit like a russian/british blue) keeps coming over
              > > and attacking
              > > them, and their hearts just RACE.
              >
              > If I remember correctly Jen was fostering a dog who
              > may have stressed her HCM cat Deagan. Her vet said
              > that because the atenolol he is taking is blocking the
              > andergenic receptors on his heart, the doggy induced
              > release of norepinephrine and epinephrine would not be
              > able to stimulate those receptors and raise heart
              > rate. Now that is in theory. To be on the safe side
              > maybe you can get a squirt gun and teach the grey cat
              > that there is something about your territory that is
              > most unpleasant.

              I have one, with eucalyptus and water. The cat runs when s/he sees me,
              but if I'm not outside the thing is brazen as heck. It shows up at between
              6.30am and 8am about 4 times a week and attacks the back flyscreen,
              growling and banging the door.

              But if I spray citronella around when it's in the yard, then my cats have to
              live with the smell after it's left.

              This is a quasi-feline-heart related question ... what can you spray to deter
              OTHER cats from encroaching upon heart-kitties, which won't affect the
              heart-kitties themselves (ie. which won't affect their hearts OR their
              enjoyment of the outdoors)?

              Catherine and the fearsome five
            • MOTTOLA FAMILY
              My concern with cold weather was not forming clots, but getting hypothermic due to poor circulation. Mr Pepe was very hypothermic when first diagnosed and we
              Message 6 of 9 , May 30, 2004
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                My concern with cold weather was not forming clots, but getting hypothermic
                due to poor circulation. Mr Pepe was very hypothermic when first diagnosed
                and we had the coldest winter on record. I would let him outside because
                keeping him in, stressed us both out. But I would limit the amount of time
                depending on how cold it was. On the very cold days, I would keep an eye on
                him and bring him in after 15 minutes.

                As for exercise restriction, I think it depends on your individual cats and
                your goals for dealing with the illness. Exercise restriction was highly
                recommended for Mr Pepe because he was so severe. I tried to do this, but
                ended up with a very depressed kitty. So I made a decision to let him live
                like a cat, even if it shortened his life. He was much happier and I took
                full resposibility if my decision had a negative consequence.

                Deena
              • diane
                ... We don t let our cats out, but at least 2 if not 3 (there s one new one) other cats have decided to make our yard a home. I don t feed or water them and we
                Message 7 of 9 , May 30, 2004
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                  At 12:12 AM +1000 5/31/04, Catherine B wrote:
                  >
                  >I have one, with eucalyptus and water. The cat runs when s/he sees me,
                  >but if I'm not outside the thing is brazen as heck. It shows up at between
                  >6.30am and 8am about 4 times a week and attacks the back flyscreen,
                  >growling and banging the door.


                  We don't let our cats out, but at least 2 if not 3 (there's one new
                  one) other cats have decided to make our yard a home. I don't feed or
                  water them and we run at them like crazy any time we see them. Water,
                  whatever. This has been going on for years (again I wonder why mine
                  live short lives and this one that looks by his fur is in end stage
                  CRF for 2+ years now are still alive?). If anyone knows of a way to
                  keep them out of my yard that would be wonderful. We need to keep any
                  window that can be reached from the outside closed at night, and
                  actually a couple of our really hate any cats in the yard at all much
                  less in their face. They *know* they don't belong there!

                  Diane
                • Garet and Shannon
                  Diane wrote: We don t let our cats out, but at least 2 if not 3 (there s one new one) other cats have decided to make our yard a home. I don t feed or water
                  Message 8 of 9 , May 30, 2004
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                    Diane wrote:
                    We don't let our cats out, but at least 2 if not 3 (there's one new
                    one) other cats have decided to make our yard a home. I don't feed or
                    water them and we run at them like crazy any time we see them. Water,
                    whatever. This has been going on for years (again I wonder why mine
                    live short lives and this one that looks by his fur is in end stage
                    CRF for 2+ years now are still alive?). If anyone knows of a way to
                    keep them out of my yard that would be wonderful. We need to keep any
                    window that can be reached from the outside closed at night, and
                    actually a couple of our really hate any cats in the yard at all much
                    less in their face. They *know* they don't belong there!

                    ---------------------------------------------------
                    We have had trouble with stray cats in our yard. The first one we live
                    trapped and ended up keeping. The second one I took to a no-kill shelter
                    nearby and donated money along with him so they will take my future strays.
                    He didn't have to be trapped, he followed my daughter home. I don't think
                    he had belonged to anyone in a long time though because he was not neutered,
                    was dehydrated and malnourished, and had a large abcess in his side. He's
                    still waiting to be adopted at touchedbyapaw.net. He's Jordan named after
                    my daughter. I now saw another cat that I am considering trapping and
                    taking there. It's a fantastic shelter with huge cages and lots of
                    volunteers. I just can't let those strays be. It's not good for wildlife,
                    for our indoor cats that get stressed by seeing them, and the strays who
                    live such a rough life. So my advice is to live trap and hope you have a
                    good shelter nearby. I know a lot of places don't.

                    Shannon
                    Daisy: 2 1/2 year old Maine Coon mix, asymptomatic HCM, diagnosed 12/02,
                    6.25 mg atenelol per day
                  • Susan Aufieri
                    I have the same problem but with different species mice, chipmunks and birds(!) wanting to use the big nesting box--aka my garage. I feel like it s Mutual of
                    Message 9 of 9 , Jun 3, 2004
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                      I have the same problem but with different species mice, chipmunks and
                      birds(!) wanting to use the big nesting box--aka my garage. I feel like
                      it's "Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom" in there. Some mornings I open
                      the door and a Robin flys out, the chippie skadoodles and lord knows
                      what else follows.

                      The eviction notice is served with a long handled hoe or rake banged
                      around so that it makes that clunky "kaching" noise, as I chase them to
                      the hinterlands. Works like a charm. I'm training this year's newest
                      crop of chipmunks now. ;-) And just in case you are wondering, I would
                      never, ever strike them with the garden tool. I just want to make it
                      *well* understood this isn't a "happy place".

                      Susan


                      On May 30, 2004, at 3:20 PM, Susan <somnamblst@...> wrote:

                      > To be on the safe side
                      > maybe you can get a squirt gun and teach the grey cat
                      > that there is something about your territory that is
                      > most unpleasant.
                      >
                      > Susan
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