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  •  help - pootie w/ arthritis problems? (27+ / 0-)

    Hello, lovely pootie & woozle peeps. My elderly mom has a nice pootie, I guess middle-agish, don't know her exact age. Mom says she has trouble with her hind legs, affects her getting up on things, and now also her hip. She doesn't "sit" but lays down instead.

    The vet gave her two shots (maybe a steroid??) with the assumption this was arthrits--the first one helped but the second one didn't help much.

    So I suggested a heating pad...and also that she question the vet a bit more closely and see if tests should be done in case it's NOT arthritis.

    Does anybody have suggestions for how to help this pootie? I hate to think of her being in pain. Anybody with experience treating pooties for arthritis? What helps? Thanks for any input!

    I love it that Obama's channeling Harry Truman: "I don't give 'em hell; I just tell the truth and they think it's hell!"

    by sillia on Fri Nov 16, 2012 at 12:05:46 PM PST

    •  Cats are hard to medicate because they lack a (24+ / 0-)

      liver enzyme. However, the first thing I would do is to address her diet. Is she eating dry kibble? Unfortunately cats should not eat kibble which is full of grains and other stuff that is not good for cats. Try a quality cat food from a good pet store that does not have any grains, Wellness, Instinct, etc. Yes they are more expensive. but it makes a difference. NOT Fancy feast which is really not very good at all. IF your mother and the cat will accept it, Instince makes a grain free raw frozen diet which is best of all (except homemade raw). The nice thing about the frozen raw is that it comes in little  medalions that are easy to thaw and use. Many animals that switch to raw become much healthier.
      I would also consider acupuncture which can help many ailments. Diet first.

      Visit my Etsy Shop - Kos Katalogue Member

      by mayrose on Fri Nov 16, 2012 at 12:15:15 PM PST

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    •  Cosequin really helps. (17+ / 0-)

      Make sure to get the name-brand, though.

      Warmth is always good ;~) Also assorted step-stools etc to help them get around.

      grain-free is also good. & I'd write more, but the cat has claimed my left hand...

    •  Metacam option (9+ / 0-)

      Technically, metacam (meloxicam) is not officially approved for use in cats in the U.S. (It is a standard arthritis/pain relief option in Australia, for instance.) I have a 14 y/o white ASH spayed female who's been on a very low 2-3/wk dose for more than 5 years. Her recent blood work and UA came back all WNL! She has a lot of messed up vertebra in her back (probably congenital -- had her whole life) and still gets around just fine. You could talk with your vet about the pro's and con's.

    •  Agree with mayrose... (8+ / 0-)

      A few years ago a very old cat who had been overweight when he lived downstairs and I cat-sit him when his hoomins went for vacations and weekends became my rescue responsibility.  For all his years he'd had dry food which he promptly barfed up when it hit his tummy and expanded with moisture, so they didn't give him a cat diet of meat.  When previous neighbor moved in with fiance, her cats used to attack him when he went near the food dishes, and it not only made him skinny to not eat, it altered his personality.  It took him a couple of weeks to realize no one was going to attack him at my place and he could eat in peace.

      When he came to me after previous neighbor begged me to take him in,he was so skinny his ribs were showing and I was scared spitless he was going to die within the week.  To get him to eat something since he was also refusing the dry food former neighbor brought with, I boiled up a chicken thigh, de-boned it, cut it in small bite sized pieces, added a couple of tablespoons of the warm broth over it when it was at room temp, and he scarfed it right up..., without barfing that former neighbor had warned of before.  [As a side benefit, the really awful smell of his poop decreased in intensity with the change in diet.  Still smelled, just didn't nearly make me gasp for breath and air the place out when it became less intense.  Obviously, I made sure I cleaned his litter box every time he used it and used the exhaust fan in the bathroom a lot.]

      Cats are carnivores, not herbivores, in nature.  They're supposed to have meat diets.  I switched him over to a meat-only diet, bought big packages of chicken thighs, separated them to individual wrapped pieces and froze them, took one or two out per day to boil up for him.  He loved chicken!  I introduced the canned meats cat foods and he liked some of them, but loved chicken..., and refused the dry food altho I left that out, along with a little dish of broth next to his water dish.  He had options galore for eating and drinking, and I always offered whatever meats I ate in case he wanted them (he'd play with a bit of pork chop but not eat it; occasionally he'd eat a couple of small bits of bacon).  He even gained a couple of pounds..., and lived another year and four months with me.  He was over 17 years old, close to 18, when he went downhill and I told former neighbor and his daughter to come and get him for the ride to the vet.

      Warmth for arthritis, or small stairs to the places where kitty likes to lay or sleep are good (make sure it's not too warm; that's not good - just warm enough to feel good like you would do for a human; speaking as one who has severe degenerative arthritis throughout my body, and have had my lower back fused and knee replaced and the other knee needs to be replaced, too).

      See if there's a pain med that works for your mom's cat.

      It sounds like your mom's kitty may be older than middle age for a feline if the rear legs are that painful.  Laying down instead of sitting could mean the spine is involved.  If kitty becomes incontinent or starts dragging the back legs behind, there is nothing more to be done to control pain.  At that point it is much better to be merciful and end the misery for said kitty.  Difficult, I know....

      I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

      by NonnyO on Fri Nov 16, 2012 at 04:02:48 PM PST

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      •  You did so well with that older pootie! (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        arizonablue, whaddaya, NonnyO, weck

        What a lovely hooman! :-)

        I will make sure Mom asks the vet if kitty's spine is involved, that's a good piece of info, thanks.

        Part of the problem here is getting Mom to communicate effectively with the vet. There's a tendency to not ask things, not want to question, etc. I think partly a generational thing? It's somewhat true with the people-doctors she goes to too, though she's getting smarter at that.

        I love it that Obama's channeling Harry Truman: "I don't give 'em hell; I just tell the truth and they think it's hell!"

        by sillia on Fri Nov 16, 2012 at 04:39:48 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks.... (1+ / 0-)
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          Yes, the not asking things and treating anyone with "Dr." before their name is a generational thing.  My mom and her sis were like that.  I'm a first-year Baby Boomer, so I'm less impressed with titles.  I discovered that titles don't mean much when the titled person is dumber than a sack of hammers.  Some with titles are smart..., but some are not.  It takes some effort to know which is which sometimes.

          When spines are involved, icky things like severed spinal cords or sciatic nerves can happen by twisting wrong.  It's a very delicate balance.  [It's very painful for humans, so I assume it's also painful for cats, dogs, any being with a spine.]

          The spine is the part I'd worry about most in your mom's cat's case.  The cat may have an arthritic back, and that could be very problematic for the pain it causes said cat.

          [I have advanced degenerative arthritis in my spine, lower back's been fused, vertebrae replaced with cadaver vertebrae, right knee replaced, the left one is going to have to be replaced, and I have the same arthritis in other parts of my body, plus bone spurs.  Mention arthritis and spine in the same sentence and my empathy goes out to anyone, human or fur person, who has the same problem.]

          I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

          by NonnyO on Fri Nov 16, 2012 at 09:13:46 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Aww, so sorry to hear about all your pain. (1+ / 0-)
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            Ugh. Have you tried raw chicken? Just kidding, that's for the pooties.
            Degenerative arthritis may not be the same thing my Mom has, hers is osteo. I don't think degenerative, but it has been crippling for her. About 10 years ago she eliminated dairy from her diet (on my urging, as an experiment) and her arthritis pain went away about 85% or better. With some stretching exercise her hands became useful again, it was amazing to see! Unfortunately, she doesn't stay as strict to the diet as she should and some of the pain has returned.
            We learned from Dr. John McDougall that most (human) arthritis has a food trigger, and dairy is the first culprit. (Some people have other triggers but it can be hard to figure them out.)

            Thanks again, I will be talking to my Mom today and will bring up the spine question. I'm sure that will be useful!
            Take care,

            I love it that Obama's channeling Harry Truman: "I don't give 'em hell; I just tell the truth and they think it's hell!"

            by sillia on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 08:21:49 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Arthritis.... (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              BlackSheep1, sillia

              Osteo-arthritis is degenerative arthritis.

              The kind of arthritis I have - degenerative - is connected to allergies.  The immunology prof where I went to college explained it this way:  When the histamines can't find anything else to attack, they turn around and attack your bone joints.  It's a form of being allergic to yourself.  Histamines ate up one disc in my back (even I could see zero space between two vertebrae on the X-ray and the fact that the disc was gone, and the two discs on either side of that were almost as thin).  I had vertebrae bone rubbing on vertebrae bone.  Feels creepy when I was only reaching for a tissue on my night stand and wasn't even exerting myself, there was the bone grinding on bone.  I also have bone spurs at places on my spine; only the one bothers me in my neck; bending my head over at certain angles makes my entire body from the neck down go numb.  All the cartilage in my right knee was gone before I went ahead with the surgery to have the knee replaced, and he scraped off the bone spurs on the upper thigh bone where they would have interfered with the metal knee replacement.  My left knee is fast feeling the same as my right before surgery, bone grinding on bone again, and it's painful.

              When I saw the allergy specialist over 30 years ago, he was taking my history and said "You have arthritis."  He didn't ask, he declared.  I said "Yes, well, something hurts in my joints.  How did you know?"  His reply was that 'virtually all people who have allergies have degenerative arthritis, but it can only be seen on X-rays.  Rheumatoid arthritis is the one that makes hand joints curl and look odd, and that's the one that can be diagnosed with a blood test and it's different from degenerative arthritis.'

              I don't have a milk allergy, thankfully.  Lots of other allergies (pollens - and things from trees, like cinnamon, wood smoke; grain pollen and certain foods made from grains, various foods, chemicals), but not milk products.  Milk has begun to taste odd sometimes, but I suspect that may be because of BGH, even though I buy the one that's not supposed to have BGH in it.  Only the good ice cream tastes like ice cream.  I eat butter, not margarine (icky chemical crap one molecule away from being plastic).  I grew up on a farm, so I can taste the difference.

              I know I can't eat beef.  The last three times I ate it I was deathly ill for three days each, and that was in 1992.  Only later when I found out about the crud cattle are fed in feeder lots did I connect what they eat and medicines they're given with being allergic.  Chicken (for me) has tasted odd for a few years, and there, again, I suspect the feed chickens get in those large chicken factory barns; I rarely eat it any more, but used to love it.  (I suspect if I still knew any farmers who raised their own beef or chickens and they were pasture and grain fed I could likely consume the meat.  I'm only one person, so no large freezer for me and no way to keep lots of chickens or half a beef in my little freezer.)  So far, I'm okay with pork, but occasionally some of that tastes odd, too.  Food allergies for me normally come in the form of vomiting or/and diarrhea shortly after eating, then the three-day migraine sets in.  MSG and sage (spice or pollen) are guaranteed three-day migraines.  Most of my food triggers are "new world foods" - and I suspect the most recent food allergies are connected with genetically modified foods.

              Post in the pootie diary the results of the vet visit for your mother's cat and I'll catch it later.  I am going to nap to try to get rid of this cold/sinus thing that has set in, but will check on the PWB diary whenever I wake up, which will probably be this evening.

              Best wishes to your mother's little fur person....

              I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

              by NonnyO on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 09:52:04 AM PST

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              •  ouch, ouch, ouch. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                Well, I hope someday they can figure out a way to treat all these allergies/sensitivities, and at the very least diagnose them better!

                It'll probably be a week or so before I have an update on my mom's cat--I talked with her today and she's decided to go to a different vet. There's one who treats cats only, that sounded promising. I passed along all the DKos suggestions so I think she has some good things to work on. Poor kitty!

                Take care, and I hope you get rid of the sinus thing, those are just horrible. :-(

                I love it that Obama's channeling Harry Truman: "I don't give 'em hell; I just tell the truth and they think it's hell!"

                by sillia on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 12:18:56 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

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