Re: 16 week old kitten w/ possible heart condition
- Hi "lorieawhite":
----- Original Message ----- >
> Posted by: "lorieawhite" lorieawhite@... lorieawhite
> Should we risk getting him to the ultrasound?
Yes, definitely!! You need the ultrasound for a proper diagnosis, and it
gives you a better chance of providing the best care you can. We took
Pepper into our home at about the same age, and the moment we had him we
complained to the vet that he had diarrhea. We went through the same
treatments you mentioned, but it wasn't until a second vet had checked him,
and ordered the ultrasound, that a heart condition was confirmed.
With the hole in his heart, Pepper has a constant issue with diarrhea as he
has fluid spilling into his digestive tract. We are having to give him Pro
Pectalin to control that, and aside from the normal Fortekor and now Lasix
that he has been taking, he is an energetic enthusiastic young fellow, (now
7 months old), that doesn't show any signs of having a hole that is too big
for him to survive surgery.
There are a couple of very big differences between what you are describing
and what we are dealing with, and the first is the diarrhea you haven't
mentioned. The second is that Pepper is still very active and seems to love
to tear around the house getting a very quick 'runners' high' from the lack
of oxygen to his brain. He will stop and 'suck wind' for a short period and
then take off again. What you are describing sounds so much more like our
asthmatic cat who needs to be on periactin to reduce the raspy noises you
are describing. Pepper doesn't have those.
When you have the right diagnosis, you can treat appropriately. This is
something that gets repeated with every cat ailment we run across in our
Pat and all the boys.
- There's an excellent cardiology practice near Albany, NY. Dr. Joel
Edwards and Dr. Aaron Wey (sp.?). I don't know where you're located,
but Dr. Edwards also visits other vet practices in the area, including
Sorry to hear about your kitten. It's important to get an accurate
diagnosis. If you want more information, let me know.
Best wishes, Marcia
- Did your reg vet at least take xrays? I'm not familiar w/kittens with heart issues, but if their was fluid in his lungs this would show on xray & at least you could start tx that to stabalize him until you can get an ultrasound done, if his heart was enlarged this may show on the xray too. It doesn't sound like the clavamox is doing anything (this is an antibiotic) perhaps this was prescribed if they think it is pneumonia. Hopefully somone on the board has more experience w/kittens with this. So sorry to hear that you & Barney are experiencing this..
-------------- Original message --------------
From: "lorieawhite" <lorieawhite@...>
Hello - New here and glad to have found this group. A lot of scary
stress with our baby Barney.
A week after we brought our kitten Barney to the vet for 1st series
of vaccinations (at 8 weeks old). That week with no warning, his
breathing became raspy and he was lethargic, wouldn't eat or drink or
go potty w/o help. He recovered within 24 hours. We brought him to
vet who diagnosed him with a heart murmer and prescribed Clavamox for
congestions and crinkly sound we heard as he inhaled (could hear with
ear up against his body). His breathing also seemed strained-shallow
and faster than before. After being on Clavomox for a month, his
breathing didn't improve (still heard crinkly paper and saw it took
more work for him to breathe). One night after giving Clavomox he
started open mouthed breathing but it didn't last long. Brought him
to vet who suggested he might have a cardiac disease and would need
ultrasounds and x-rays. We brought him home and he started having
episodes that were awful and three times we thought "this is it". He
was breathing open mouthed, tongue sticking out, white bluish gums
and tongue, he would walk and collapse and pant on his side. A few
time would look like he was hacking up a hairball, foam coming out of
his mouth. We think the three episodes we saw were each triggered
by: climbing the stairs, playing with another cat, chasing a toy.
Between these episodes he eats, drinks water, is alert and appears
Our angst is whether to drive almost 1 1/2 hours away to get an
ultraound done (no one near us has equipment to fit kitten, except
Cornell U. which charges $600+. The place further away is 1/2 the
price. At this point our vet gave us a very poor prognosis. Said he
had a very small chance of having asthma and more than likely had a
heart condition. Our hope would be to get the ultrasound and get
meds for palliative care since it sounds like there is no cure.
We're afraid the car ride would stress him out too much and he could
die on the way.
Should we risk getting him to the ultrasound? Or just try to make him
comfortable in our own way? When he's had these attacks my husband
and I have both been talking to him, stroking his head, trying to
keep him calm which I think helps but I don't know. This is awful.
We both break down crying thinking he's not going to make it. I hate
thinking he is scared and in pain. We are having a baby soon and
can't afford much more than the ultrasound that would at least
hopefully tell us exactly what he has and hopefully give us meds to
make him more at ease.
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- It sounds as if Barney needs to see an emergency vet today from his
condition. I would be very concerned about pneumonia as well. He needs a definite
diagnosis and definitely that fluid needs to come off his lungs. That could be a
I`m so sorry to hear Barney is worse. Please see a vet today and I`m
thinking of you. I also had 16 wk heart kittens, but none were in heart failure at
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