I'm going to be out of the country for a couple of weeks and will
leave Clipsy with friends who are very experienced with sick kitties,
but have not had one with Clipsy's condition (hypertrophic
cardiomyopathy and congestive heart failure) before. I'm preparing
instructions for my friends about Clipsy's medications and supplements
(furosemide, benazepril, CoQ10, and just about to start L-carnitine
and nattokinase because the snowplows finally got to my street so UPS
was able to get to my street to deliver my order of supplements
They also need to know what signs to look for in case Clipsy needs to
be taken to a vet or emergency hospital. I have some handwritten notes
that I wrote down when I met with the cardiologist (nine weeks ago
today!) after Clipsy's diagnosis:
If breathing rate more than 40 (sustained) with effort: Give extra
furosemide dose, call vet.
Without effort: No furosemide, call vet.
If gasping/labored breathing: Give furosemide if possible, transport
to hospital immediately for IV furosemide.
And that's all the information I came home with nine weeks ago. Since
then I have joined this group, learned about saddle thrombosis, and
ordered a stethoscope from eBay so I can listen to her heart as well
as monitor her breathing.
What I need to know, and be able to tell my friends, is:
When the cardiologist said if her respiration rate is more than 40 per
minute "sustained," what does that mean? How long is "sustained"? I
guess it doesn't mean if she's breathing 50 times a minute while
enthusiastically purring and nuzzling, and so far I've never measured
it at more than 30 (usually closer to 24) when she's just lying curled
What should her heart rate be, and what should we listen for with the
stethoscope to know if she needs to see a vet right away? Last time my
vet examined her at the office, her heart rate was over 200. At home
it's generally between about 120-140.
What about blood clots? What are the signs to watch for? Hind leg
paralysis? Anything else?
Any other questions I've forgotten to ask? Is there a care sheet kind
of thing that people can put up on their wall or refrigerator as a
quick reference guide to caring for a HCM/CHF cat?
Jim Sinclair jisincla@...