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  • RANSOM, Vicky
    Hi I recently joined this list and have been lurking for a while, although I do recognise a few people from the CRF list. To introduce myself, I live near
    Message 1 of 6 , Feb 1, 2002
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      Hi
      I recently joined this list and have been lurking for a while, although I do
      recognise a few people from the CRF list. To introduce myself, I live near
      London in the UK with my husband and our 3 persian cats, 3 year olds Miss
      Honey and Hailey and 18 month old Kirk.
      Hailey is the reason I joined this list. We got her from the rescue centre
      a couple of months ago, right after our CRF kitty died. We were told at the
      time that she had a grade 3 heart murmer as well as partial blindness, and
      she had been in the centre for a while with prospective owners being put off
      by her illness..I couldn't leave that sweet affectionate cat there - I mean
      it's not her fault she's got these health problems, is it? and it certainly
      doesn't make her any less deserving of a safe, loving home for the rest of
      her life..however long that turns out to be.
      Anyway, I decided I wanted to determine the cause of her heart murmer and
      rapid heart beat. T4 tests came back normal so this week I booked her in
      for a chest x-ray and heart ultrasound. When I went to collect her, the vet
      showed me all the pics and got the reference books out to try and explain
      everything to me, but I did get a bit lost (Sciences never my strong
      subject!). It seems to me that the upshot of the tests are that she has no
      heart enlargements, nor thickening or thinning of the heart wall, but they
      think there may be some constriction beneath the aorta (he called this
      sub-aortal something). She seems to be perfectly healthy at the moment so
      the vet is not recommending any treatment . He suggested two ways of moving
      forward, either to rescan her in 6 months and see if there are any changes
      in the heart measurements or to arrange a full colour scan with a
      cardiologist or at a university. I don't know what is the best thing to do,
      or what is the advantage of the full scan. Since she is healthy at the
      moment, is it worth me getting more tests on her?
      I know that in the case of CRF we have a less aggressive approach to
      treatment here in the UK. I don't know if this is the same for Heart
      problems, but I would certainly like to know what some of the options are so
      that I can put them to my vets.
      All the best
      Vicky, Miss Honey, Hailey, Kirk and Angel Prinny





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    • k_silverstein
      hi, my cat izzy, almost three, was just diagnosed with hcm after she presented with congestive heart failure. she had always had a grade 1 or 2 heart murmur
      Message 2 of 6 , Dec 4, 2004
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        hi, my cat izzy, almost three, was just diagnosed with hcm after she
        presented
        with congestive heart failure. she had always had a grade 1 or 2
        heart
        murmur that every vet she ever went to said they could "barely" here
        and
        wasn't anything to be concered about. she had no other symptoms (at
        least
        that i could tell) untill the night she went into failure. after
        spending four days
        in an oxygen cage, it took a long time and a lot of lasix to get all
        the fluid out of
        her longs and get her breath rate down to an ok level, she spent one
        last night
        at the hospital out of oxygen. they kept her the extra night because
        her renal
        values got really high from the lasix. we took her home two days ago
        and she
        has been off all meds except for pepcid and aspirin for three days to
        let her
        renal values get back to mostly normal which THANKFULLY they have.
        she
        is drinking and moving around occasionally and eating although she
        will only
        eat baby food right now, i think cause of the texture. so now i find
        myself in a
        new situation. i am totally paranoid. the first night she was home
        i slept with
        her (i have a huge bathroom/walk in closet that she is set up in
        because i
        have two other cats and a chihuahua) and checked her breath rate
        every two
        hours. i have eased up a bit but sometime her breathing seems
        erratic even
        when her breath rate is ok. i just can't tell anymore what are
        signns that she is
        feeling better or worse or tired or sick. there are lots of lists of
        things to look
        for pre-diagnosis but not so much for after. does this make any
        sense to
        anyone? i just don't want to miss something again and just
        everything feels
        liek what was up is now down. i've been reading some of the postings
        on this
        board and found them really helpfull and comforting and i would love
        any
        advice or support.
      • brinkett
        ... As Lisa said, this is totally natural and understandable under the circumstances. I was the same way after my cat was diagnosed. Eventually I calmed down
        Message 3 of 6 , Dec 6, 2004
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          > so now i find myself in a
          > new situation. i am totally paranoid.

          As Lisa said, this is totally natural and understandable under the
          circumstances. I was the same way after my cat was diagnosed.
          Eventually I calmed down but it took a couple of months.

          Sarah.
        • feralcatz1
          Hello, everyone! I just wanted to introduce myself. New to the group but I m not new to heart disease in cats unfortunately. My first two were diagnosed
          Message 4 of 6 , Dec 27, 2006
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            Hello, everyone!

            I just wanted to introduce myself. New to the group but I'm not new
            to heart disease in cats unfortunately. My first two were diagnosed
            around 1988 and I've never had fewer than 2 under the care of a
            cardiologist ever since (usually more like 4-6).

            It almost seems like an epidemic. I do rescue work and we have so
            many permanent fosters with HCM and so many that we still hope to
            place who have heart murmurs that we've organized them into 4 groups
            and are doing quarterly cardiology visits. We're slowly finding
            homes for the ones not on meds but it's SLOW - it just scares people
            so much - and the cost of the cardiologist visit we're learning is a
            major turnoff.

            I take my purrsonal pets at the same time as we take the rescues. At
            the moment in the purrsonal pet heart problem department I have
            Bandit, AJ, McMurphy and Wilhemina on meds (atenelol)and Missy,
            Gordy, Lindy Byrd and Mehdi with heart murmurs not on meds (yet
            anyway).

            I wanted to come here and starting reading messages. To see what
            else I can learn about murmurs and heart disease. And also to get
            more of a feeling about how pet owners view the cardiologist
            process. Anything I can learn that will help me explain the heart
            murmur/cardiologist situation better to prospective parents (I feel
            like a recording sometimes) and to be better able to screen
            prospective parents and determine out which ones will really follow
            up on the care can only help our effort. Any thoughts anyone has
            would be gratefully accepted.

            We are blessed to have access to Chesapeake Veterinary Cardiology
            Associates.

            Maryanne Dubbs, Cat Rescue of Maryland
          • Leah Ferron
            Maryanne, Welcome to you and all your kitties. Bravo to you for doing what you do!! Whether you believe in this type of thing or not, I know you have secured a
            Message 5 of 6 , Dec 27, 2006
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              Maryanne,

              Welcome to you and all your kitties. Bravo to you for doing what you do!! Whether you believe in this type of thing or not, I know you have secured a good seat in the next life for saving all those kitties' lives.

              I am sorry that you have had to deal with so many kitties with heart disease. I hope that it is not an epidemic but merely good luck on the kitties' part for finding you, a person of whom could give them a chance at a good life. We generally recommend supplements for heart kitties like CoEnzyme Q10 (CoQ10) and some others to help slow the progression of the heart disease. If you want more information on these supplements just email me. It is information that you could give to prospective owners too. Along with supplements, a good quality canned food is best for them too.

              I wish I could give you more help in finding good people to adopt kitties with special needs. I know that it is hard. Most of us have heard from too many people that we are crazy for helping our kitties as we do. It can be disheartening but this group helps keep our spirits high in that we know there are other caring people like us out there. So don't ever give up trying! When you do find good pet parents, definitely direct them to our group! We have lots of information to share and are never low on opinions (and you can take those or leave them without worrying about offending anyone)!

              Glad you found us and keep up the good work!

              Leah and her cats and Angel Alec



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            • Lisa Clarizia
              Hi Maryanne, Welcome to the list! And bless you for the work that you do. I lost my Baby Boy to DCM just over a year ago, and just about two months ago,
              Message 6 of 6 , Dec 27, 2006
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                Hi Maryanne,

                Welcome to the list! And bless you for the work that you do.

                I lost my Baby Boy to DCM just over a year ago, and just about two months
                ago, adopted Lilly who has HCM/VSD from a foster mom in Ohio who had joined
                this list to find out more about how to care for her. My other three cats
                are healthy, and while the whole heart-disease thing was something I never
                thought I'd want to repeat, I felt like it was a shame to waste all the
                things I'd learned about caring for a heart-kitty, especially when there
                were so many out there that needed homes.

                All of the people here are the kind who would do damn near anything to help
                their kitties -- the ones who don't feel that way are not the kind who spend
                all night after the initial diagnosis combing the internet for information,
                eventually stumbling across this list (which is how about 99% of our new
                member find us) -- so you'll find most of us are perfectly willing to do the
                cardiologist thing, though cost and distance often present obstacles.

                Cost, of course, is a major factor. If there were some way to alleviate
                this -- maybe through an arrangement with a local cardiologist or by
                (somehow) financially assisting potential adopters with the cost -- you
                might find a wider pool of potential adopters. There are creative ways to
                do this -- my niece and her second-grade class, for example, are
                "sponsoring" a dog at a local shelter -- bringing in dog food etc. to be
                donated to the shelter for the dog, until he's adopted. I imagine that it's
                difficult enough to get donations to cover regular operational costs for
                your organization, but perhaps you might find some people or businesses more
                willing to sponsor an individual animal, as it's more personal.

                But there's also the question of the ability of the adopter to care for a
                pet with a chronic illness. Lilly's foster mom, Moriah, could be pretty
                sure that Lilly was going to a home where she would get her meds, get them
                on time, get regular checkups and be cared for by someone who basically knew
                what she was doing -- because I'd been through it before. I suppose the
                best thing you could do with potenial adopters is to make sure they are very
                aware of all this entails -- that meds cannot be skipped, the cat will need
                to have regular checkups etc -- and of course, point them towards this list
                :)

                Lisa


                On 12/27/06, feralcatz1 <catrescueofmd@...> wrote:
                >
                > Hello, everyone!
                >
                > I just wanted to introduce myself. New to the group but I'm not new
                > to heart disease in cats unfortunately. My first two were diagnosed
                > around 1988 and I've never had fewer than 2 under the care of a
                > cardiologist ever since (usually more like 4-6).
                >
                > It almost seems like an epidemic. I do rescue work and we have so
                > many permanent fosters with HCM and so many that we still hope to
                > place who have heart murmurs that we've organized them into 4 groups
                > and are doing quarterly cardiology visits. We're slowly finding
                > homes for the ones not on meds but it's SLOW - it just scares people
                > so much - and the cost of the cardiologist visit we're learning is a
                > major turnoff.
                >
                > I take my purrsonal pets at the same time as we take the rescues. At
                > the moment in the purrsonal pet heart problem department I have
                > Bandit, AJ, McMurphy and Wilhemina on meds (atenelol)and Missy,
                > Gordy, Lindy Byrd and Mehdi with heart murmurs not on meds (yet
                > anyway).
                >
                > I wanted to come here and starting reading messages. To see what
                > else I can learn about murmurs and heart disease. And also to get
                > more of a feeling about how pet owners view the cardiologist
                > process. Anything I can learn that will help me explain the heart
                > murmur/cardiologist situation better to prospective parents (I feel
                > like a recording sometimes) and to be better able to screen
                > prospective parents and determine out which ones will really follow
                > up on the care can only help our effort. Any thoughts anyone has
                > would be gratefully accepted.
                >
                > We are blessed to have access to Chesapeake Veterinary Cardiology
                > Associates.
                >
                > Maryanne Dubbs, Cat Rescue of Maryland
                >
                >
                >


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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