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cat with heart disease - need some hope

Discussion in 'Cat Health and Nutrition' started by rachedee, Aug 7, 2009.


  1. rachedee

    rachedee PetForums Newbie

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    Hi everyone

    I've just joined as I would love to hear from anyone else who has/had a cat with heart disease. Our precious 6 year old tabby has been breathing quicky and we noticed he had lost some weight so we took him to the vet. He heard a faint galloping in his heart and said we should bring him in for tests. At this point the vet seemed quite happy that if it was heart disease we had caught it early.

    Sadly when he had the tests on Tuesday we were told that he is in heart failure. Obvioulsy hearing this is devastating. He has hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and his lungs were quite swollen with fluid.

    He is now on Fortekor, Frusemide and Prilactone and actually is lots better. His breathing is much slower, he is eating like a horse, more playful and energetic and is just generally almost back to his gorgeous little self.

    Despite that though I know that is very ill and I don't want to get my hopes up that he will be with us for a little while longer. I can't bear the thought of losing him - I love him so much.

    I would love to hear some positive stories of cats who have defied the odds and lived for longer than expected. It would give me some hope at least.

    Rachel x
     
  2. ambercat

    ambercat PetForums Senior

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    My cat Sam was diagnosed with HCM last August, the prognosis from the vet when I asked how long he could have, was 'months'. Well, he's still here 1 yr later and doing fine. He's also on Fortekor and Frusemide, plus I have him on Rutin (with vets agreement) because the fluid that built up was found to be 'chylous effusion' and rutin is used to prevent chyle. When Sam was first diagnosed I was like you, worried he was going to die at any moment. I joined the Yahoo feline heart group and got loads of useful tips from people who are going through exactly the same thing - it helped a lot, I'd recommend it. feline-heart : Support group for Feline Hearts HCM :)
     
  3. Saikou

    Saikou PetForums VIP

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    Additional supplements of taurine and CoQ10 can help improve what heart function there is remaining.
     
  4. rachedee

    rachedee PetForums Newbie

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    Hi Ambercat - so glad to hear that your Sam is still going strong. Thanks for the link to the Yahoo group - I've joined.

    Thanks Saikou for the advice on the supplements - I'll definitely have a look into that.
     
  5. Mieze

    Mieze PetForums Newbie

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    Hi Rachel,

    just to give you some support: my cat was diagnosed with a heart failure eight years ago. I have to confess that I can't remember the exact diagnosis, but I've looked up " HCM" in the www, and found that my "Cengiz" had similiar symptoms. The heart muscle is thickend and the heart wasn't able to supply the organism with enough oxygen, no matter how hard it works. She's been put on medication immediately (it's called 'Atenolol', some kind of beta blocker). She has to take her pill daily since then, and she is doing very well until now. She is now nearly 17 years old, and youcan see that she isn't a young cat anymore. But I think she is a happy and contented old lady. I hope your little tigers problems can be sorted out in this way as well. I wish you and your cat all the best!!!!

    Liebe Grüße

    Regine
     
  6. rachedee

    rachedee PetForums Newbie

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    Hi Regine/Mieze

    Thank you so much for your reply. Wow - 8 years - that's amazing! That makes me feel so much better. Every day that we still have our darling Pickles is a bonus now - if it could stretch into years that would be wonderful.

    He is so happy and well today - I just can't believe that he is so ill. He seems to be responding well to the meds so that must be a good sign. His breathing has gone from 38 breaths per minute on Monday to 22 today so his little lungs must be getting rid of the fluid.

    Rachel x
     
  7. Mieze

    Mieze PetForums Newbie

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    Hi Rachel,

    good to hear that he is doing so well!!!! I think that's a really good sign.
    I hope he will continue to improve (not sure if this sentence is correct english:confused:, but I think you know what I mean)

    Wish you and Pickles all the best!!

    Regine
     
  8. ambercat

    ambercat PetForums Senior

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    Yes, forgot to mention, Sam also has 500mg of taurine every day. :) Rache, if you do decide to add taurine to his food, build up to the full dose slowly, as taurine is an amino acid and they can cause tummy upsets if you give the full dose straight off. Taurine occurs naturally in muscle meat, and it is added to some cat foods, but additional taurine is good for heart cats as Saikou mentioned. :)
     
  9. rachedee

    rachedee PetForums Newbie

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    I am definitely going to get some taurine for Pickles. Some things I've read about it suggest that a fish rich diet doesn't contain enough taurine - a couple of sites also said that fish can prevent the absorbtion of it. Has anyone else heard anything about this? I'm a bit concerned now as both our cats only seem to like the fishy flavours so that's all they've had - mostly the Felix pouches.

    I guess the vet would have checked his blood for taurine deficiency though - I'll have to check this with him.
     
  10. ambercat

    ambercat PetForums Senior

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    I wouldnt worry too much about the fishy flavour cat foods - most cat foods are supplemented with taurine now anyway. :)

    Its not so much that he may be deficient in taurine, its more that extra taurine is helpful for heart kitties. I buy NOW taurine which is 100% free form with no other ingredients and no preservatives, from here Good 4 You - naturally
     
  11. Aud's_Mum

    Aud's_Mum PetForums VIP

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    My Aud has HCM too and is on exactly the same tablets plus aspirin and two others! At the beginning of June our cardiologist gave her 3 months top but she is still going strong!

    She has another scan on the 21st August to check for thrombocenia (sp?), so I am really keen to find out the outcome of this scan as she is doing so well.

    All I can say is dont give up hope, I was prepared to say goodbye to my little girl in August but i reckon she's going to be here till Christmas at least.
     
  12. rachedee

    rachedee PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks Ambercat - do you just sprinkle the powder on the food? Or do you have tablets?

    Hi Aud's mum. That's great news that your Aud is doing so well. I guess vets can only guess at these things and thankfully sometimes they're wrong in their estimations.

    Could you tell me what other tablets Aud is on please. We have to go back to the vets tomorrow and I'd like to ask him about aspirin in particular but if there are other meds that could be beneficial I can ask about them too.

    Pickles seems very well at the moment although he does have the odd time when I think he doesn't look so good. But then half hour later he is fine again. Maybe I'm getting paranoid and watching him too much!!
     
  13. ambercat

    ambercat PetForums Senior

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    I used to buy the NOW taurine capsules - as they are exactly 500mg per capsule, which I just opened and sprinkled in the food (the powder is tasteless), but it works out more cost effective to buy the NOW loose powder, so I just use some proper cooks measuring spoons to dole it out. :)

    Aspirin is used if there is a concern about blood clots. I havent got Sam on anti blood clotting - but I understand that Nattokinase is a better (safer) option than aspirin.
     
  14. Aud's_Mum

    Aud's_Mum PetForums VIP

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    Hi,

    Audrey is also on Plavix & Spironolactone as well as the frusomide, fortekor and Aspirin.

    Audrey was referred to a qualified animal cardiologist who has been working with heart murmers in cats for years. She advises Aspirin is the better tablet at preventing blood clots and thrombocenia.

    Do let us know how you get on at the vets :)
     
  15. rachedee

    rachedee PetForums Newbie

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    Hi

    We took Pickles to the vet yesterday and he seemed pleased with the way he has responded to the meds. We're going to give him a small dose of aspirin 3 times a week to hopefully reduce the risk of clotting.

    I've been having problems getting his tablets down him though the last couple of days. He had been such a good boy but I think he's got wise to it now. I've been giving them to him in sardines, mackerel etc but I think I need to try something else as he doesn't seem to want to eat these now.

    Any suggestions for things to try?

    Rachel
     
  16. ambercat

    ambercat PetForums Senior

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    Glad to hear he's doing well.

    I use cheese to give Sam his meds. I just mould it round the tablet and give it to him - he sees it as a treat and expects it now! Occasionally he won't fancy the cheese, so I always have wafer thin ham/chicken as a standby - again just wrap it round and offer! I don't know many cats that will refuse ham LOL!

    I know some people use those Webbox stick treats to give pills, think they just break a bit off and push the pill into it, but I've not tried those. The De-Furrum treats are quite good too, you can just break those in half and push the pill into the gooey inside.
    :)
     
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