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2y Old Cat with unknown disease - need help!

Discussion in 'Cat Health and Nutrition' started by Lexya, Oct 28, 2018.


  1. Lexya

    Lexya PetForums Newbie

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    Hi everyone, Im new to the forum but joined in the hope of finding some advice or info.

    I have a 2 and half years old female kitten named Feline.
    despite seeming reasonably happy she is having some odd problem.. I will try to keep it as brief as poss but she has quite a history.

    This cat is extremely sensitive, she trust only me and at the sight of any other person, she remains terrified and hides under the bed that is her safe place.
    Not only that, even to the noises or moving objects in the house, the cat always reacts with so much fright.
    This condition did not allow us even to take her to the vet for the last recall of the vaccine because only the view of the carrier, she entered into hyperventilation, meowing very strong.
    In these situations he reacts so badly that I even fear she may have a heart attack.

    Despite this situation of continuous fright, the kitten has always been in perfect health, giving no signs of any problem.

    Until one night of about 4 months ago:
    suddenly the kitten began to meow very loud and could not move properly.
    In particular, a back leg seemed not to support her and the kitten tried to escape, scared, dragging herself.
    this lasted for 3 minutes during which the cat continued to mew loudly and entered hyperventilation.
    At a certain point, as if nothing had happened or not, the cat got up again and with a frightened look run under the bed (where it always hides when it gets scared).
    Within an hour, the kitten came out of the hideaway and began to behave like nothing was .. eating, playing and without having visible consequences.

    After this attack, because of its extremely delicate character, I did not feel like taking her to the vet but I only started looking for medical advice without finding any kind of feedback.

    After about a month another night the same attack occurred again:
    same symptoms, strong meows and inability to move the legs correctly, especially the back legs and hyperventilation.
    within 3 minutes, the attack passed without leaving any kind of consequence.

    At this point we started to hear vets but no one has felt to give us specific opinions without being able to visit the cat.
    A few days ago, a month and a half after the last attack, the cat has had another .. third attack in 4 months.
    same symptoms and 3 minutes later it was all past.

    now i am very scared and i dont know what to do.
    I would really appreciate if you can give me any tips to face this situation.. i dont really know what to do.
    Bringing here to a vet make me think she will die of fear but at the same i dont really know what can cause those attacks (seizure? cerebellar abiotrophy?)

    thank you in advance for your tips, i can always share a video in private of the last attack she had ( i recorder her for searchign better help)

    thank you again!
     
  2. Treaclesmum

    Treaclesmum PetForums VIP

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    Hi there, sorry to her about your cat. It sounds to me like your cat may have Epilepsy. You should take her to a vet and explain what's been happening, she will probably benefit from medication.
     
    mrs phas likes this.
  3. Lexya

    Lexya PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for your reply.
    We thinked about Epilepsy but she seems conscious, not lose foam from the mouth.. so we not really know.. a vet that saw our video said that could be the diseas called "cerebellar abiotrophy" but i dont know a lot about that..
     
  4. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @Lexya, your cat could be in pain and very frightened when these attacks happen. You do need to get her seen by a vet. If you can't take her to the vet, then can you ask a mobile vet to come to your house to see her?

    Are you in the UK?
     
    Linda Weasel likes this.
  5. Lexya

    Lexya PetForums Newbie

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    I am from Italy.
    I tried a ask a vet to come home. He did but the cat hidden under the bed.
    I tryed to take her but she started to panicked and to hyperventilate..
     
  6. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Well, it would be best to give her a calming supplement the day before you take her to the vet or the vet comes. Are you able to buy Beaphar Calming spot-on in Italy? You put it on the back of her head.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Beaphar-Ca...&sr=8-1&keywords=beaphar+calming+spot+on+cats

    Otherwise you could put her on a course of Zylkene. Open the capsule and mix the powder with her food. This is very good at calming, without making the cat sleepy.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Zylkene-75...0844045&sr=8-1&keywords=zylkene+for+cats+75mg

    If you call a vet out to make a home visit you need to put the cat in a room where she cannot hide under anything. e.g. a bathroom perhaps, well before the time the vet is due. Sit with her to help her stay calm. And use a calming supplement for her whether you take her to the vet or the vet does a home visit.
     
  7. kittih

    kittih PetForums VIP

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    As others have said she does need to see a vet. My cat was also very scared of the vet and some people. When I gave him zylkene which is a protein found in milk he became much more relaxed. It doesn't work for all cats and can take several days to a week to start to work.

    You can get it on Amazon.it...
    https://www.amazon.it/gp/aw/s/ref=nb_sb_noss/259-9612469-7057561?k=zylkene+225+mg

    The dog version is the same as the cat version. Cat dosage is 75mg so just divide up the dog portions. The larger portions are cheaper. You can't overdose and the dosage doesn't have to be accurate. You can open the capsule and just sprinkle the powder on food and feed everyday. Some people recommend a double dose the first few days.

    Beaphar calming spot on is also recommended. It contains Valerian which is calming.

    https://www.amazon.it/Beaphar-Gatto...=8-12&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=beaphar

    I suggest you leave your cats carrier out in the main room where you normally spend time. Tie the door open, put a cosy bed in there and every so often put a tasty smelly treat in there.
    Ignore the carrier yourself and completely ignore her interactions with the carrier the same as you would ignore her interacting with a table or her bed.

    When the time comes for the vet act normally, then quickly pick her up and holding her legs together pop her in (carriers which open at the top are easier with cats which dislike carriers.)

    Cover the carrier with a blanket (I sometimes use my coat) so that it is dark and safe. Ignore the miaows.

    Whilst a home visit may help a little the vet might need to do extra tests and it will be easier and less stressful for her to be examined by a team of professionals than one vet trying to capture her in a room.
     
    SbanR and moggie14 like this.
  8. SuboJvR

    SuboJvR Joey’s Mummy

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    Excellent advice here so far, just a couple of thoughts from me...

    It may be that whatever is going on with her is affecting her behaviour - if she receives treatment, she could improve behaviour wise too!

    And at this point, as scary as it is, I think the risk of NOT taking her to the vet is perhaps worse than the risk of how she may react if you do at this point. She absolutely needs to be seen.

    I also wonder if she had been neutered (spayed for a female we call it here)? As if she hasn’t this could also heighten her anxiety/stress levels.
     
    ribbon likes this.
  9. Lexya

    Lexya PetForums Newbie

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    A year has passed since the last update... Feline continues to have partial epilepsy crises, more or less 5 per month.
    In these months we have done blood tests ( we had to sedate the cat to be able to take her to the vet )and talked to a vet specialized in neurology .. no specific causes have emerged and the vet advised us to start a Fenobarbital treatment but the crises have not diminished. Recently we added Diazepam also but the seizures have always remained the same.
    At this point we don't know what to do anymore ... we thought we would share her story with you in the hope of hearing some similar case...



    20190419_231708.jpg
     
  10. Gallifreyangirl

    Gallifreyangirl PetForums VIP

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    chillminx likes this.
  11. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Hello @Lexya, she is a beautiful cat! :) . I am so sorry she is still having to battle with this worrying condition. It must be very upsetting for you to see her having a seizure. And for you to see her so frightened and upset afterwards.

    Have the vets diagnosed the cause definitely as epilepsy? Phenobarbital and diazepam are powerful sedative drugs as you know. If they are not making any difference to the frequency or severity of the seizures there is surely no point in her having the drugs?. Cats do not cope well with strong sedatives such as diazepam, and they can have the affect of making the cat frightened and anxious, because they feel they are not in control.

    Has cerebellar abiotrophy been ruled out? (which your vet had mentioned). I don't know much about this rare genetic disorder that causes certain types of brain cells to die , but from what I have read the symptoms in the cat would be present all the time, not just now and then.

    As I understand it - when cerebellar abiotrophy is present in a kitten the disease usually gets worse as the kitten gets older, e.g. the balance gets poorer, ability to eat is affected. But in Feline's case it has stayed the same - is her balance, and her co-ordination of her limbs fine when she is not having the seizures? Is she able to eat normally?
     
    Gallifreyangirl likes this.
  12. Lexya

    Lexya PetForums Newbie

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    yes, the diagnosis of idiopathic epilepsy has been confirmed. Other causes have been excluded. As you said, the ataxia would bring more symptoms and Faline has been suffering for a year now and has no other symptoms except for these epileptic seizures. The biggest problem for us is the therapy that is not working. Nobody knows other possible drugs? Here in Italy the classic therapy is Phenobarbital or Potassium Bromide that we have not tried because of the side effects (respiratory crisis can happen frequentely) ... it is a very old drug. Can you give me the contact of some expert veterinarian maybe?
     
  13. Lexya

    Lexya PetForums Newbie

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    PS: I found an old post here on the forum where there was a video of a cat that had the same type of crisis, but there were no more answers from the owner.

     
    #13 Lexya, Nov 7, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2019
  14. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Can you give me a link to the old thread you saw please?

    I am not able to give you the contact details of any vets in Italy who specialise in cat epilepsy. You own vet should be able to refer you to a specialist in Italy. We have a member who is a vet but she has not been here, on the forum, for over 6 months and I do not know when she will be back.

    You might find it useful to join the Facebook group for owners of cats with epilepsy. I don't know anything about the group, how good it is, but it may be worth you giving it a try. The name of the group is Cat's with epilepsy.
     
  15. Lexya

    Lexya PetForums Newbie

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    sorry i think i haven't permission to do that...the link i mean
     
  16. Lexya

    Lexya PetForums Newbie

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    I thought there was the possibility of contacting some veterinarians not in Italy.

    And thakyou for the facebook group, I will check it!
     
  17. lorilu

    lorilu PetForums VIP

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    chillminx likes this.
  18. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I think any veterinarian would want to examine your cat themselves before they would make any recommendations. So your best bet would be a group such as the one on FB; there may be other groups than I have not come across.

    Do you have veterinary teaching colleges in Italy? If so it may be an idea to ask for a referral for Feline to one. They usually have the most advanced knowledge and are perhaps able to carry out more in-depth testing.

    With reference to the video link from the 2016 thread, I imagine Feline has already been tested for toxoplasmosis and the result was negative?
     
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