Saturday, February 8, 2014

Vet Visit + Test Results

Hi Kitties!

The Mom here.  On Thursday, I scooped up Carmine and Jewel and took them to the vet for some tests.  As you may recall, Carmine was losing weight in his previous couple of visits to the v-e-t.  The v-e-t and I wanted to investigate what is going on with him further since all of the normal blood work came back fine.

So Carmine had his blood pressure taken.  This was quite the challenge!!  Carmine is a very nervous cat when he goes to the vet.  The first couple of tries to get his blood pressure didn't even work.  When we finally got one to register, he was off the charts.

We ended up covering him with a towel because he kept trying to hide somewhere.  I pet him and tried to soothe him the best I could.  Finally, his blood pressure came down to a decent level.  So his blood pressure isn't the issue.

Thankfully, Carmine maintained his weight this visit at 8 pounds, 13 ounces.

We decided to do a blood test for pancreatitis the same day.  The good news is, he does not have pancreatitis!  However, we still aren't sure what is going on with him.  The vet and I decided the best thing to do for him is to trial-treat him for Irritable Bowel Disease.  She said Carmine's intestines feel thick, which is supportive of an IBD diagnosis.

Carmine will be starting treatment for IBD with the tablets next week.  We will monitor his weight in response to treatment.  If he does better, then we know we've found the problem.  If not, we will have to do further testing - most likely an abdominal ultrasound.

I really hope this treatment works for my baby.  I feel so bad for him for all the health problems he has to deal with.

Jewel went to the v-e-t to recheck her kidney values and to measure her potassium levels.  Jewel managed to gain four ounces this time!  My friend, D, has been feeding her lots of treats, and she's been eating a good amount throughout the day, too.  I was really happy about her gaining a little weight.  She currently weighs 8 pounds, 7 ounces.

Her kidney values are holding pretty stable.  Thank God!  Her creatinine went down from 3.1 to 2.7, so the v-e-t wants me to continue to give Jewel her fluids every other day.

Jewel has been very happy lately.  She's socializing a lot, enjoying lots of time on the couch, and even gets in my office chair sometimes.  I'm just so happy that I'm able to give her a good quality of life right now.

The v-e-t suggested some more supplements to help Jewel's kidneys, which I will research some.  She's suggesting Vitamin E, omega-3 fatty acid, and Welactin.  If anyone happens to know how these supplements help the kidneys, I'd appreciate if you share.

Also, I know nothing about IBD in cats.  Does anyone know a good source of information on this?  I always like to do my research and learn all about what my babies are facing and how I can best help them.

Sorry for the long post.  I truly appreciate all the support you all give us as we go through this journey with Carmine and Jewel.  Your friendship means a lot to me.


  1. We are purring for Carmine to stop losing weight and hope it is IBD - good luck with the tablets.
    Luv Hannah and Lucy xx xx

  2. We hope that the vet has the right idea and that it's IBD. Though we haven't any direct experience with it, we know it's manageable, and we're sure that other bloggers will chime in.

  3. I hope that it is IBD (sounds odd typing that doesn't it?) but it will mean that it's treatable and he can be all well again.

    It's great news that Jewell is doing so well, she looks lovely in that picture!


  4. We're glad to know Carmine and Jewel are doing better. It's always such a worry when one is ill. Two at a time is harder. Hugs for you.

  5. Back in 2007, when Annie got sick, I joined the Yahoo Feline IBD group for info and resources. Turned out it was the food I had switched Annie to and once I switched back she was okay. However, what I recall from my brief stint on the group is that single-source protein, grain-free, preferably raw, was the way to go.

    I think, though, that if it's IBD, it's a lot of trial and error. RE: the single source protein: generally something the cat doesn't eat normally is better, because the problem could be the chicken (or whatever) that normally is being fed. Or perhaps a grain or other binder is causing the issue. I know that I tried every premium dry on the market at the time, but Nicki kept having gross diarrhea until it clicked in that the common ingredient was potato, because dry foods need something to bind them, of course. In his case, he's fine with rice as a binder, though I stay away from the common allergens of corn, soy and wheat.

    I also have a well-known recipe for slippery elm syrup that can help with digestive upsets:

    Slippery Elm Syrup Recipe

    (A good “food herb” tonic to help with vomiting, diarrhea, and other intestinal upsets in cats)

    Put 1/2 cup of COLD water and 1 teaspoon of slippery elm powder (you may have to open the capsules if you don't have it as loose powder) into a small saucepan. Whip it up with a small whisk or fork. Bring it to a simmer over a LOW flame, stirring constantly. Do this for about 1 to 2 minutes, continuing to stir. Cool it off and refrigerate.

    This will keep for about a week.

    The best thing to do is to give to kitty about 1 teaspoon of the syrup about 15-30 minutes or so before meals. Alternatively, you can sprinkle some of the slippery elm powder on the food, but in acute situations (vomiting, nasty diarrhea) giving the syrup BEFORE meals can be much more effective.

  6. I'm glad that Jewel's kidneys are stable and she's doing well. I wish I had some suggestions for Carmine's IBD, but we got nothin'. I supposedly have a mild form of this, but nothing we've tried has done much to stop my periodic digestive/ intestinal upsets. And my human has done everything recommended by both my vets AND the internet! This, even after a hugely expensive endoscopy AND ultrasound.

  7. I dunno. If Carmine was holding steady, I wouldn’t put him through anything else. I was told once I had IBD but I’ve had no symptoms and have been fine without meds. Healing purrz to both Carmine and Jewel.

  8. We're so glad to hear Jewel is doing better. Purrs that this continues for her.

    We don't know much about IBD, but we have heard that diet is important...what you feed them. We hope you can figure out what is going on with Carmine. Purrs for him too.

  9. We are all sending purrs and prayers to dear Carmine and are happy Jewel is doing better.

  10. We are sending healing purrs and we are sure that others will be able to offer you advice. Paws crossed everyone continues to do well.

  11. Sending healing purrs for both the sweet kitties. Sorry have not experience with IBD, but it seems that Carmine is doing fairly ok. Let's hope he doesn't need anything more invasive! xx

  12. you are one fabulous kitty mama, hoping the vet finds the problem

  13. dood...tell yur mom ta chek out this link:

    it bee a wealth of info....though we troo lee hope ewe due knot haz it ...~~

  14. Do you have access to an internal medicine specialist? Be aware that a test for pancreatic issues is NOT that sensitive for the disease in cats and your kitty can have problems with it--it might not be in an acute stage. Also, liver and small intestine issues may co-exist with it. Check the ingredients of the food kitty is eating and if it has carrageenan in it--don't use it. Carrageenan is known to cause intestinal issues and cancer and many top-rated and supposedly healthy cat foods contain it. I had a cat with IBD and learned a lot from the experience.