Hyperthyroidism in cats – Tommy

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He is a hot mess.

He has a heart issue, elevated liver enzymes, and his T4 is a 15. We started the methimazole on Friday, sat down with his vet today, and he’ll be back at the vet next week to draw blood, check his levels, and adjust his methimazole.

Am I even spelling that right?

With a number of 15, it may be thyroid cancer. With his cardiac numbers as high as they are, he may not be a candidate for I-131, which is a radioactive iodine injection. If his liver numbers don’t go down, we have to look at it for tumors.

If, may, may not… We wait. We run the drills and start at the bottom, and work our way up, and we wait.

If all numbers normalize, we pursue I-131. If thyroid doesn’t normalize, we pursue I-131. If he has thyroid cancer, and only thyroid cancer, the I-131 is the best option because if he has cancer and it spreads, the thyroid will absorb and process the iodine, regardless of where that tissue has traveled.

If cardiac does not normalize, but liver improves, then the last thing we do is an EKG to either rule him out or qualify him for the I-131. It’s something about the way the heart will perform after therapy, and heart disease can speed up? I am not a magician/physician.

Then again, even if his cardiac values lower, they are so high right now that he may end up living with an enlarged heart. We’re at the bottom though, and not even at viewing the heart yet. There is no point while we’re waiting to see how well this oral medication is working.

This is probably better suited to put in one of those diagrams that predicts outcomes. The next part I can’t wrap my head around is that if he has cancer, and we don’t get him the optimal and most effective treatment before June, how is this going to effect his mortality rate?

Currently, he is upset eating his usual food. He has associated this with bad things. It’s close to him getting medications, close to him getting PetzLife oral gel swabbed on his teeth (he can’t have his dental worked on in his condition), and he concluded yesterday that if he has to eat his routine food, it’s going to bite him in the ass. I told his daddy that ‘I don’t really care if he has to start eating the cans in the pantry; Just keep me abreast of inventory’.

I should see if there is anything to my benefit in my Cornell book on cats. Dismal is going to look up info on studies concluded and outcomes in similarity to Tom.

Basepaws Catkit DNA testing update #10

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Woo!

All three cats have now received their health reports with 100 clear.

What does this mean? (nothing) No…wait…they are not at an increased risk for diseases and conditions based on the DNA mutations they tested for, but nothing says they will stay well. Activity, diet, exposures, and even pure chance can still get these cats sick.

What were they being tested for?

Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is the most common genetic disease in cats. PKD is characterized by the formation of small fluid-filled cysts in the kidneys that lead to kidney failure.
Gene PKD1 Mutation C>A

This is an example of an actual mutation they tested for and how they summarize what increased risk testing positive for this mutation of this gene will look like.

I still cannot stress the importance of semi annual exams in seniors and annual exams in the more youthful cats, because these tests are not used to diagnose conditions. I myself carry a few gene mutations that put me at risk but haven’t presented the diseases yet, and may never present the disease.

My distraction is a bit higher providing this update. Tommy Gargoyle is getting an expanded assortment of tests ran today. We had the visit, an ECG, blood pressure, 2 vials of blood, and I have to collect his urine this evening to get back to his vet. I am not sure what the outcome will be as far as diagnosis, treatment or mortality rates. I am curious to see if there is anything he gets diagnosed with to send back to Basepaws in regards to their research program.

Stewart has contributed his files and sample to Basepaws’ research for asthma in felines. Their research is not only about illnesses and their links to genes, but in purebred breeds to expand their growing database. You can view this page here:
Does your cat have a specific health condition? Apply now to take part in our research study and join us in learning more about genetically occurring diseases in all pets.

“Conditions

  • Acromegaly
  • Asthma
  • Calcium Oxalate Urolithiasis
  • Diabetes (Type II or Insulin Resistant)
  • Feline Idiopathic Cystitis
  • Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
  • Polycystic Kidney Disease
  • Struvite Urolithiasis¬† “

Click through the logo to see what Basepaws can provide you about your feline family

 

Tommy goes back to the Vet

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Things are truly out of our hands with our cat. I can’t put any weight on him. He keeps having issues with intermittent constipation, which bring vomiting and a bit of diarrhea. He screwed up in November and went to the ER for an enema. I screwed up in November by realizing that he can’t eat pork. Awesome. Then we were so bothered by his needing the enema, that we gave him a bit more Miralax. Turns out that when his stomach gets empty, too much Miralax ends up giving him indigestion or something and he vomits on an empty stomach. We backed off a little, and then he was constipated and crying 2 nights ago.

That’s it. I’m done. One month he was vomiting by midnight because I put pork in their food batch that month. Then he’s vomiting slicks up because of the Miralax. This month, he’s been vomiting up unformed hairballs because Climate Change, and he hates to be groomed. Now, we are back to his butt. We’ve been putting Weruva Pumpkin Patch Now! in his food the last few days and I put another case on order from work, and I’m not giving him Miralax for his final feeding of the day so it’s not on his stomach for bed time.

He has an appointment at the vet on Tuesday. Senior exam, blood panel, possible +T4, and they request a stool sample. While I am there I will get their opinion on needing an ultrasound to determine IBD, and if they feel it’s a good fit then I will get an estimate and figure it out in the short future. This bub also needs his teeth cleaned.

November radiology

Ah ha! Conure mating season

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Jak and Koi watched me move all their things around in the cage, while they were on their java tree. I left treats in the new location of their dish, and I tapped different areas to show them what they need to look for once they hop back inside. No one freaked out, and they went off to get their treats in the new location. Our AvianSun bulb is only going to run for three hours a day or less. My ladies were happy to see me after I got home from work.

Whew. So far, so good. I did show my coworker a video of my oversexed Idris last year from March 2019.

That was not fun. Idris got her own birds in her new home last year.
My co thought it was hilarious, as if my verbal descriptions had not previously done it justice.

Change what you’re doing! It’s mating season

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Today I put two and two together, and I had to hustle. It’s mating season for conures. They are hardly even domesticated, and February marks summer in their homelands. Right now my girls are molting and destroying their toys. They don’t breed, but the girls will still lay a clutch to share with their lady mate.

  • Shorten the available hours on their UV bulb
  • Move all items around inside the cage so it’s not cozy and familiar
  • Night night or cover them earlier in the evening to shorten their hours

I do not want eggs. Look up “egg binding”. *shudder*

Holiday Bonus splurge

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I’m pretty new to my store, and I didn’t realize that this would be happening, BUT IT’S SO COOL!
We have a wicked good stock of products, so it took me about fifteen minutes to decide.
(I’ve been there since November, so did you really think I didn’t window shop at every Shift?)

YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEETTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTI!

Felted. Cat. Cave.

Pet Cave – For cats and small dogs

Yue asked for a cave many years ago, and was never satisfied. In fact, my pet rat Little Bastard would use the first one I bought her as his hang out, when he was loose in the house having a romp, and leave his stash in it. I have wondered for years if I could get this right.

Felted caves are in investment. If I got this wrong it would be a hit to my wallet, but I love my Boss and my Boss Boss, and it was risk free. They lurve it. LURRRRRRVE. In fact, every time a new cat would try it, another cat would walk up and start beating them in the head.
As you do.

Now that the initial WOO is over, the cats are enjoying it so much, and their nogs are being spared.

The Yeti is hand wash or machine wash gentle cold, and air dry. I have not tested this yet as no one has vomited on it this week.
This. Week.

Basepaws Cat DNA Health Report semi-update

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I got health reports back for Tommy, Stewart, and Princess Yue. Quite a few markers on her sample came back as inconclusive, so I emailed the Basepaws team and they said they would re-run her sample to see if we can get clear results or else we’ll do a new sample.

I’ve been at work for this past month and hopped back on Yue’s report this evening and it’s showing that her Inconclusive results are now reading In Process. Neat, right?

All of Stewart’s results were cleared, and I think two of Tommy’s were Inconclusive (so I didn’t contact them) and I was comfortable with the results knowing that this is not a clear indicator that the cat will not come down with the disease or disorder. It only means the studied genes show they are at less risk for developing it. IE I know women that fight breast cancer that tested negative for the genes.

I will come back with another update as soon as I find it.

eventually

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This is a personal post…sort of pet related.
When everything quieted down, I was hired at a pet supply store. Then seasonal depression kicked in around the time change and got progressively worse each week. I am still working, but waiting for my appointment on Wednesday so I can see about med changes through March.
Our store carries different raw options than weren’t available to me before, but my partner does not want to try them on Tom until we have a savings because his butt stops working here and there when things change. I told him that I have no time to make his food this week, and he said he can make Tom’s food. Here is where I roll my eyes.
I have been making the batches of raw food for 3 years. I don’t trust him. Part of it is my mental health and needing to be in control of things. I am very paranoid when my family is home in the evenings. I’ll get home from work and stress out on Dismal even though he’s putting in a fair amount of effort.
I’m going to sign off. My head is doing some things.
PS – Tommy keeps soothing himself to the cool mist humidifier around bed time. It’s ridiculous.

Now you see me; Now you don’t. – Life and the Emergency Room

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Tommy did it again. He went back to the ER about two weeks ago. His constipation had him again, and we need to work to getting him all set up back at his regular vet and see if there is or isn’t a diagnosis for IBD. He’s been on Miralax for a few years, and it seems like from time to time he backs up too far. He ended up with an enema after x-rays and a prescription for oral lactulose. They also gave him subcutaneous fluids because he was getting dehydrated from the vomiting.

Lucky me. Another $5xx.xx bill for the bub. AS WELL AS pulling $200 out of a hat much earlier than expected. His dad theorized that should Tom have IBD, the pork shoulder I put in his batch of food last time may have been irritating his guts. I had just made a new batch of food the day Tom went to the ER, only I broke a pork bone down in the Instant Pot and just put pork broth into it. Tommy got to eat the rest of the Dr. Elsey’s cleanprotein canned turkey until a new order of rabbit came in from Hare-Today in PA. I had just completed a few gig jobs to get ahead on the electric, and suddenly I’m making cat food again.

New dilemma: More money

I start work tomorrow morning at a local pet boutique specializing in more natural foods. I just heard that Lotus is coming out with a raw, so I have some new things to learn and research, as well as being able to keep up with being physical this winter when I would normally be sedentary.

What is Stop and Eat the Flowers going to be doing? I am not sure. This has been sure a flop of a year with personal challenges, and now I am right at the cusp of seasonal depression issues with the DST shortening the evenings – I want to be happy and healthy and get my zeal back. Next month is 1 year since one of my friends died. July of this year another friend died. May I broke my car and rushed my parrot to the vet for surgery. June I bought another car and rushed my guinea pig to the vet over a heart condition, and it was decided to put her down. August, the funeral was finally held for my friend and during that month, Idris (my youngest parrot) was rehomed.

I still had my blue hair and interviewed for a rock and roll barber shop for the desk, and then later at Carmax for the sales department, and then a friend said I might want to think about changing my hair after four years. So here I am, with silvery steel hair and a new job.

What’s got your allergies? The Test

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“If you didn’t have all those animals in your house, you’d be fine.”

Nah. I got proof this month.
I had allergy testing done as a child, but the process is a little updated, and there is one big thing I wasn’t aware of:

YOU HAVE TO DISCONTINUE ALL ANTIHISTAMINES FOR 1 WEEK

However, you can still use your nasal steroids ie Flonase.

Backstory

My allergies have been stupid and ridiculous since I moved to Maryland. It wasn’t too bad in Arizona. I would use the Neti with the salts and flush my sinuses out, and maybe take one antihistamine. I also had 4 cats, several guinea pigs, and hay in the house. Since moving to Maryland, I have had constant sniffles, congestion, and take three different antihistamines after trial and error with different single ones. I also just added Flonase 2 months ago. I wash my bedding at least twice a month, as well as pillows, and we have a HEPA running upstairs in my room as well as downstairs in the living room. The guinea pigs and hay are also gone. And still…these things with my face…oof.

My insurance said they would cover 75% of allergy testing before processing goes through. I paid $125, but I might get a partial reimbursement. You never can really tell these days. I stopped all antihistamines on a Wednesday, as my testing was the following Wednesday. Some kinds of acid reflux meds have to be discontinued as well, but not Prilosec, which I take the generic or else things get very unpleasant if discontinued. I was also told to not take any sedatives three days prior. You also have to not use hydro-cortisone.

Friday the itching was intense. I had no hives, but just ready to dig my skin out. Most noticeable areas were shoulders, near the elbow, sides of the torso, inner thighs, and my scalp. It felt like I constantly had bugs in my hair. It was terrible. However, it were to be temporary, as long as I made it to Wednesday. The entire week I felt like I could be irritating myself because I had no protection other than the Neti and Flonase, and wasn’t certain if anything could be my deodorant, or start having a severe reaction to my cats. I was washing my hands more a dozen times a day, and some days I would take two showers.

Tuesday night my eyes started itching pretty bad. Oh no.

Wednesday morning I was ready

Allergy testing is pretty cool. They put the allergen serums on pokey pokey things and press it into your skin. I remember them doing this to my back as a child. There are two controls: One is ragweed, which nearly everyone responds to, and the other is nothing. It’s a neutral.
You then wait fifteen minutes to see which serums initiate swelling (hives) and to what degree.

This is the beginning of two arms


Once your results are final, you get swabbed down with alcohol and then can slather your skin with benadryl gel.

You know what didn’t really react at all? CATS AND DOGS
Har har.
Cockroaches, mice droppings, very few trees, and loads of grasses. Rye grass was off the charts. Timothy hay did show up as a reaction, but not terribly so, and even slightly less was Orchard Grass. I guess that sort of confirms the theory with bunny and guinea pig owners that Orchard Grass may be less threatening to you than feeding/keeping Timothy hay.

My results stay on file for 1 year so that I can start allergy shots (immunotherapy) but I can’t afford it currently. The facility can bill over $5000 to my insurance, and upfront I get to pay out 25% until it processes through my insurance, gets disallowances per contract, and months down the road I might see a check to cover part of my costs. You also have to purchase a sharps container, get a prescription for your needles at the pharmacy as well as an Epi-pen. My initial responsibility is at least $1400.

I am reluctant to say that it would max out my emergency credit card, and we drive and MINI and a Volkswagen, and that would be more irresponsible than purchasing a MINI or a Volkswagen.

Just hermetically seal me in the house. I’ll be fine.