Last night my 7 1/2 year old kitty Piper returned home with me from a week and a half stay at the house I rent when I'm at work (a long-distance job is hell). All week she'd been playing happily and careening up and down the hall with no signs of problems.
About a month ago, she had been very sick, and eventually the vet down there found an abcess in her elbow. She gave her a Convenia shot--which I wouldn't have authorized had I known, knowing well the dangers it can pose--but I wasn't consulted, and this vet had no standing orders from me. She then got a course of Clindamycin two weeks later from her regular vet to finish clearing it.
She was very stressed in the carrier coming home, though she's made this trip several times before. When I let her out, she ran to my bedroom and hid under the bed (not unusual for her). Later I thought I heard her vomiting--sort of a strangled sound--but I couldn't find anything. Then when I pulled her out to take her to her room and feed her, her breathing was labored and had a watery sound.
So off to the emergency vet we went at 1:30am. X-rays showed filaments through the lungs that the vet said were pulmonary edema, and she said the heart looked a bit bigger than it should be--all signs of heart failure. She was put on Lasix and monitored for several hours, and the next set of x-rays showed some improvement. But the vet was concerned about her falling temperature (96.4) and said she needed an oxygen cage, and it was Thanksgiving.
So she sent us to the emergency vet in the next state, where she was put in an oxygen cage, started on a Lasix drip, and warmed up (she was now at 94). She has improved to the point where the vet can no longer hear the crackling sounds in her lungs, though there is still some roughness.
Piper has always been a stressy kitty, and downright neurotic to boot. She's food-sensitive to the point where she vomits up anything other than Wellness grain-free chicken or turkey and her Natural Balance limited ingredient duck and green pea--though she wants to eat everything.
But she looks at new places as opportunities to explore, and new people as sources of more love and petting.
I am distraught at having another chronically ill young cat (Mystra was diagnosed with CRF going on two years ago at the age of 5). But Mystra made an amazing turnaround, and I'm hoping that Piper might too. What are her chances of living with this disease? What can I do to improve them?
Penny, Piper, Mystra, and the Feline Horde