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Do you think I'm cruel??

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by niki, Apr 18, 2011.


  1. niki

    niki PetForums Senior

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    One of my cats, Tillie has had a skin problem since she was about 8 weeks old. Shes now 4. She basically scratches herself until she is bald and bleeding and even then will carry on. I have tried all sorts...

    To start with it was occurring maybe a couple of times a year, then every 6 months, then every three and now it's every time we take her collar off. We tried different foods, thinking it was a food allergy. I've treated the house with various sprays an a uv light thinking it was a dust mite allergy. I've had three skin biopsys done at different times.

    To start with the vets would give her a steroid injection to stop the irritation and cream to clear up the wound but then the more she had the less effective they become. She's had different tablets, ones with steroid in, others for her skin. I've tried different lotions and potions... The latest I found on 'Many Tears' website after reading how much it helped them.

    We began to think it was stress related so we was goin for reiki, which seemed to make a tremendous difference to start with but now that doesn't have any affect with 'chilling her out'.

    Basically what I'm getting at is..... Do you think I'm been cruel by keeping her collar on all the time. I try to take it off every week or so so she can clean herself but then she goes mad and I end up bathing a very bloody and very distressed Tillie.

    Someone at work told me I was cruel for keeping her like this... Although she also told me she'd have her pts after she found out the first biopsy cost over 250...

    Just wanted your opinions really....an by all means if anyone has any other suggestions I would be very pleased to hear them!
     
  2. Ally-Kats

    Ally-Kats PetForums VIP

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    Long shot here, but do you live near fields? I ask as my previous cat had a skin condition and his fur kept falling out, the vet gave him steroid injections etc and even the female pill as they thought it may have been a hormone imbalance. We were at our wits end with it as it wasn't getting any better, although he wasn't red raw with the scratching, he just had sore bits which healed quickly. To cut a long story short we moved and within a week his fur started growing back and all the dry scabby skin went away, we don't know for sure but we think it may have been something the farmer was using on his fields. He never suffered like this again, but he really was back to normal within a week with the skin. Hope you find out what the problem is.
     
  3. Dally Banjo

    Dally Banjo PetForums VIP

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    :( Poor paws & you. Has she had any blood tests? Im not sure but I think Hypothyroidism can cause skin problems :confused:
     
  4. niki

    niki PetForums Senior

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    Shes had a couple done. All the tests we've had done have come back inconclusive! The vets did offer me a complete set of blood work done, or something worded like that but it was going to over £600 and I can't really afford it, especially if I get another inconclusive result.... Which I'm told is likely if it is stress related.

    I've moved three times since having Tillie so I don't think it's anything like that.

    I really do think it's stress related but I just dont know how to de-stress her!

    When she has her collar on she is great, really fussy and affectionate. But I just worry the longer she has it on then I'm never going to be able to take it off and keep it off :(
     
  5. Dally Banjo

    Dally Banjo PetForums VIP

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    :( Have you tried Feliway?
     
  6. jenny armour

    jenny armour PetForums VIP

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    forgive me for saying but are we talking about a flea collar?
     
  7. niki

    niki PetForums Senior

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    No sorry, I mean her elizabethan collar.

    I have tried feliway, yes, and I didn't really notice a difference. The reiki really did help but now within a couple of hours of been home shes scratching again. :confused::confused:
     
  8. Taylorbaby

    Taylorbaby PetForums VIP

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    has she had a allergie test done? My boy kept doing that pull all his fur our stratch till bled covered in scabs etc, after the allergy test came back we were shocked as his alergic to everything, so had to change things, from food to plants etc!

    They create a vacine/injection from what they are allergic to, we went from daily injections to every 2 days all the way though to every 6 months, now he can go a good 6 months without one, well worith doing :)


    oh you can buy a special body stocking for cats, id use that instead of the collar :)
     
  9. niki

    niki PetForums Senior

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    Thanks I'll ask about that... Just googlesnthe body stocking... Found some very interesting ones! None that Tillie would appreciate!! I dont think they're going to come far enough up her head to prevent her scratching but I will definately look further into this... Thank u x
     
  10. Erzs

    Erzs PetForums Member

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    Just to answer your question about whether or not what you're doing is cruel I have to say I think what you're doing is the complete opposite and incredibly caring. Sounds like the person at work isn't the kind of person I'd want to adopt any of my animals!

    You've put a lot of effort and money into trying to help Tillie. I hope you find your answers soon.

    I don't have any advice unfortunately. One of my cats had a skin irritation on her neck that she kept at but it went after what I think was steroids.
     
  11. niki

    niki PetForums Senior

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    Thanku so much! That means a lot. Til was getting Steroid injections each time she had a scratching but once they wore off she would start again... An the more she had the less effective they was.

    Because she had it from me first getting her she wasn't insured... So none of her treatment has been or ever will be covered as it's a pre existing condition!
     
  12. Colette

    Colette PetForums VIP

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    I don't think you're being cruel at all. If you just stuck the collar on but did nothing else, then yes - but as you have gone to so much effort trying to treat whatever is wrong I would say you are doing everything you can.

    We had a similar problem with our last dog - incidentally also called Tilly. She had loads of allergies, which resulted in her chewing her paws until they bled and she had to hobble around. She wore an elizabethan collar almost constantly for almost 2 years I think, before the right treatments had enough of an effect.

    In our case, the treatment consisted of ongoing immunotherapy injections, daily antihistamine tablets, and low-allergen diet. Like I said it did take a while for her to stop itching, but we got there in the end.

    I would definitely suggest getting some allergy tests done if you haven't already. And DON'T worry about idiots that say you are cruel - sounds to me like this individual was more concerned about the cost than the cats welfare!
     
  13. firstprincess

    firstprincess PetForums Member

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    Firstly your not cruel. Your doing what is right for your cat, if she makes herself sore when the collar is off thats worse than her having the collar on.

    I rescued a RTA cat with exensive skinloss on his hindlegs, it took 18 months of surgery and skin grafts using over 1000 pounds worth of synthetic skin to get him to where he is now.

    He still has a 1 inch area on his hindleg which will ever heal - it looks like a piece of chicken breast! But it doesnt get infected so we just keep it clean as needed.

    Anyway to get to the point, he wears baby tights as needed to stop him getting to it. It works brilliantly.

    Perhaps look into something similar.

    Also when u take the collar off do u feed her or distract her with play?

    She is very lucky to have such an understanding mumy :)
     
  14. Dally Banjo

    Dally Banjo PetForums VIP

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    Have you tried any suppliments? evening primrose I think, not sure I'l go & get Hobbs :D
     
  15. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    Hey Niki, considering what you have tried it is hard to suggest what else you can do.

    Can I just dig a bit deeper about the possible food and the environmental triggers? When you say that you have tried different food, are we talking a proper elimination diet that last for weeks on end with just feeding just one novel protein source and nothing else or are we talking about trying different brands?

    Remaining on the food issue, have you ever tried raw food, which, if done correctly, can be the purest but also most nutritious food for cats?

    Re environmental triggers? Did you eliminate household cleaners, air fresheners, laundry liquid/powder?

    In addition to steroids, did the vet try anti-histamines? Did you ever try evening primrose oil as DB has suggested? That contains a certain fatty acid that is particularly good at soothing the itch from allergic reactions.

    Does she get any hives at all?

    Do you think in addition to their being an underlying reason it has now become a habit of hers to scratch?

    Sorry so many questions.
     
  16. TatiLie

    TatiLie PetForums VIP

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    I would go for DB suggestion on Feliway.
    I had a very itchy skin condition and stress would make it flare up, so I would go for something that would relax and take one's mind off it.
    Maybe the vet could prescribe some antihistamines to easy the itchiness.
     
  17. GSDlover4ever

    GSDlover4ever PetForums VIP

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    Do you trim her nails?


    Several months ago my old cat did the same thing, although she hadn't done it before....

    I'm not sure if she was in a cat fight at first.... however she would continuously scratch at her neck until it was bleeding and raw... Many vet visits.

    I put a snood on her... my OH old t-shirt sleeve... and it healed amazingly well.

    She has done it again... although not as bad, she has a bald spot.
    She has got another snood on and it will be kept on until it heels....

    I also trimmed Luckys back nails, so they aren’t as sharp.
     
  18. Miss.PuddyCat

    Miss.PuddyCat PetForums VIP

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    Ive been here before with Soda, she lost all the hair on the back of her head, ears and around her neck.

    We started cutting away the fur to get a better look and this is when she lost alot of hair as it just fell out.

    We tried switching cleaners, food, plants, collars, etc.

    Are vet said she may be allergic to Milk, which I think is true as she know has a scab starting and I think its cause she got into a glass of milk that was left out on the table.

    Soda got steroids but only twice and I hope that will be it for her. She also wears a leather dog collar now to.

    I cant find a picture of what it looked like but this is after it started healing

    [​IMG]

    I wish you the best of luck and I hope Tillie feels better very soon.
     
  19. carly87

    carly87 PetForums VIP

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    Hi there

    Have you thought of using Soft Claws on your girl? They seem to bevery effectivefor this sort of behaviour. I usedthem on an allergic cat of mine a few years ago and they worked wonders. I know the contraversy surrounding them, and wouldn't use them on a cat unless something like this was occurring, but for this type of thing, they really are a god send.
     
  20. Themis

    Themis PetForums Senior

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    I can sympathise as I have the same with my Cat Dixie. She too is now no longer insured so any treatment has to be paid for. She scratches her ears until they bleed. I have done the full elimination diet, steroids etc and the vet cannot get to the bottom of it.

    We even have HEPA air filters running in the flat in case it's a dust mite allergy. What makes it more puzzling for me is that Dixie can go for months without scratching and then one day her ear will be bleeding again. The only thing that works is Piriton but its so, so hard to get the tablets into her.

    So to answer your original question I don't think its cruel at all. What would be crueler would be to let her scratch until she is in pain and gets an infection.

    Interestingly, my Cat becomes very affectionate when she wears a collar too whereas usually she is very timid.
     
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