Re: [FH] What to do?!?
Welcome to the group. This is so typical of how many of us found that our
cat had heart disease. We've been through the trauma and the oxygen and IV
diuretics along with days in the emergency room after finding their cat is
in congestive heart failure (CHF) which is a symptom of heart disease.
That said, a lot of cats do recover and with medication, can often live a
fairly normal life.
There are a few sphinx cats on the list so I wonder if it's something that
goes with the breed? Some breeds are prone to heart disease like my Maine
It sounds like they are doing the right thing. It takes a day or two to get
the fluid under control. It's great that Roley is going to see a
cardiologist. That way they will know which type of heart disease he has so
they will know which medications to prescribe. The most common are
diuretics combined with an ace-inhibitor, beta-blocker or calcium-channel
blocker. The diuretic controls the fluid (lasix / furosemide for fluid in
the lungs and/or spironolactone for fluid in the chest) and the others
control the heart rate.
Roley will probably have to be on daily medication for the rest of his life.
How is he at taking pills? If it's difficult, there are other options.
There are "compounding" pharmacies that can convert the medications into a
tasty liquid or a chewy treat. There are Pill Pockets which are chewy
treats you can hide a pill in.
It's also good that they're giving him something to prevent blood clots.
Not all cats get them but when they do, it can be devastating. There are
usually three options - aspirin, plavix or lovenox. Aspirin is usually
given as one baby aspirin every 3 days. It can upset the stomach. Plavix
and lovenox are prescriptions and are much more effective. Plavix is oral
and lovenox is injected under the skin. They are fairly expensive - lovenox
is more than plavix. I get my lovenox from a pharmacy in Canada.
Once he comes home, he will probably be very lethargic. That's normal from
both the experience of being in CHF and also a side-effect of the
medications. He will get used to the medications after a few days.
The best thing to help him is to be sure he's on a good-quality canned food
diet. You can also give him supplements such as CoQ10 which is wonderful
for general health and especially good for heart disease.
Next, you should learn to observe him so you can avoid problems. The most
common is the one you're experiencing now - CHF. When Roley is resting and
not purring, count his respirations per minute. Also, see how much his
sides move in & out. If that changes later on, and it's not due to exerting
himself, then he may be starting with CHF.
My girl was diagnosed the same way as Roley back in November of 2004. She's
still here and doing fine!
Please let us know what your questions are as you will have plenty!
FYI - check out the document in the Files sections (3rd from the bottom)
with Questions for Your Vet. You may have to sign in with your Yahoo ID -
----- Original Message -----
From: "srobesky" <srobesky@...>
Sent: Tuesday, February 20, 2007 11:14 AM
Subject: [FH] What to do?!?
> Saturday my little guy was having weird breathing. I thought maybe he
> had a cold. Monday took him to the vet and they deemed him a serious
> case and hospitalised him overnight. Today took him to get an
> ultrasound and they tell me that he has severe cardiomyopathy. He has
> fluid in his chest and around his heart. I have taken him back to
> hospitalisation and told that the outcome is not good.
> Now I am waiting for him to see a cardiologist, but still told that
> his outcome is not good. They say it could be a few days, a few weeks,
> a few months - they don't know.
> I am freaking out. He is on oxygen and now they are putting him on
> something to stop clotting.
> I am just starting to read through past posts here. Please someone
> offer me some advice. He is only 6 years old and my best friend. I
> am devastated and just want for him to be comfortable...
> Here is the little dude: