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Cat of the Month –  March 2020

COVID-19 is sweeping across the globe, disrupting life in all manner of ways. Vet2Cat has had to cancel the vast majority of upcoming work in order to follow the government’s guidelines, in place to protect us all. However, we did manage to see quite a few cats before the restrictions started and have selected our favourite three. You may notice some repeat offenders, so to speak, reflecting the sad truth that we have not been getting many new clients and patients signing up.

The 3 nominees this month are Belle, Georgia and Paddy…

And the winner is – PADDY!!

WINNER – PADDY

Lovely tabby & white Paddy was a COTM runner-up back in October and in February. You can see more of his story on February’s pageCat of The month February 2020 – Parker

What we really like about Paddy is that he seems to like us more each time we visit! He sometimes gives us the run around but is usually quite happy to have a smooch and a cuddle. Check out a video of us visiting Paddy at the beginning of March https://www.facebook.com/vet2cat/videos/881511262299148/

Paddy continues to have ups and downs with his ongoing inflammatory bowel disease and must take regular medication. He doesn’t particularly like the special food he has to eat to help make him better, so this is a constant source of worry to his staff. With the restrictions in place, we have had to cancel re-examination visits and convert them to phone updates. His staff need to keep a close eye on his food and water intake, his eliminations, and his weight – requiring hopping on the scales with him twice a week. Should his weight start to drop, or he shows signs of being painful or badly inappetent, we would be justified in re-visiting him. All the while his weight is stable and he remains reasonably bright, we will have to make do with regular phone calls.

Runner Up – Georgia

Also a runner-up in November, Georgia is another patient with ongoing health issues. Gorgeous Georgia had sustained a bad injury to the base of her spine from a road traffic accident many years ago. This has left her with neurological damage to the bladder and bowel, as well as a limp tail that was partially amputated. A concoction of medications are required to help her pass her wees and poos, with a very observant hooman monitoring if all is well. Even with all this to deal with, Georgia is such a delightful cat, very happy and energetic and an important source of comfort to her lovely hooman!

 

Runner-Up – Belle

Another tabby and white puss, Belle never fails to make us chuckle. We tend to visit her pal Sox more than her, but whereas Sox is a tad stand-offish, Belle just knows that we have treats in our kit-bag, so comes a-begging! We gave her a senior cat check over at the last visit, including a blood pressure check, which she passed with flying colours! She tolerated having the BP taken as long as the stream of treats kept coming!

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Cat of the Month –  February 2020

February’s selection of cats that have put a smile on our faces as we go about our work includes, Lulu, Paddy and Parker.

And the winner is – PARKER!!

Promoted from runner up in January to winner in February! Vet2Cat is very proud of Parker, as are his hoomans. The reason being – he had to go off to see the specialist ophthalmologists at Optivet in Havant http://www.optivet.com/, and we were all a bit worried about how he would cope with this, generally not being the most tolerant of patients. But a dose of gabapentin pre-travel and the wonderful eye vets Prado and Natalia were singing his praises! He was so well behaved for his examination there.

Vet Claire referred 15-year-old Parker after finding some abnormalities at the back of his eyes. This was during a follow up visit regarding Parker yowling at night and doing some odd things. Although Claire suspected Parker had hypertension (high blood pressure), the multiple tiny ‘fluffy’ lesions seen did not seem typical for the classic hypertension changes we normally see, so an expert opinion was sought. The outcome – the changes were chalked up to hypertension after all, but very early stages. This stage is not often seen as we usually miss it, we often disregard these behavioural changes in older cats as ‘just his age’- perhaps a bit of senility. Parker had even had a BP check in October which was normal and was due to have another routine check this April. Fortunately, because Parker’s dad is very attuned to Parker’s demeanour, he picked up that something was amiss very quickly, and got straight on the phone to Vet2Cat! Finding and treating this from an early stage has likely saved Parker from going blind.

The CatCareForLife programme recommends cats above the age of 7 years have a yearly blood pressure check and cats over 11 years have this checked twice yearly. Check out this chart of recommended routine health care for cats: https://www.catcare4life.org/app/uploads/2018/03/Recommended-examinations.pdf

Parker disturbed from his afternoon nap to have a vet check up. At least he can get straight back to it when we’re done!

“That’s the spot, right there!”- Paddy gets a good scratch from Emma

Runner Up – Paddy   

Lovely Paddy made COTM runner up back in October. Since then his gastro-intestinal problems got worse, so an investigation was begun. Vet Claire performed an ultrasound and found an abnormal section of his intestines. To really get to grips with ongoing intestinal disease, biopsy is generally required, so Paddy was referred to Lumbry Park Specialists, where he underwent endoscopy – a flexible camera with biopsy tools is passed down into the stomach and first part of intestines and samples are taken (under a full anaesthetic!). The biopsy results showed he has ‘chronic enteropathy’ – a broad term meaning there is inflammation of the intestines, but fortunately no signs of cancer.

A long battle of wills began, trying to convince Paddy to eat the very specialised diet that was prescribed to the absolute exclusion of everything else – no mean feat! He also needs twice daily pilling with steroids and gut protectants, and we have had to use various other medications to encourage him to eat as well as reduce his signs of vomiting and nausea. Nurse Emma visited to show Paddy’s carers how to administer all these pills, and now Paddy is quietly resigned to having this done. He is thankfully showing improvement after many weeks, but it will still be many months of special food, medications and re-assessments before he will (hopefully) be fixed.

Runner Up – Lulu

A recent convert to Vet2Cat, Lulu’s mum is over the moon about our home visiting service. Lulu kept missing follow-up appointments at the vets because she was so difficult to get in a carrier. Because of this her vaccinations had lapsed, and she hadn’t had a good once-over for a while. Visiting Lulu at home, is a different story entirely. She is a very friendly cat and spent most of the time sitting on assistant Helen’s lap purring and kneading. She was only a bit miffed when she realised we weren’t just visitors but were there to give her a jab, flea and worming treatments!

“What do you mean this is a vet visit?!” – Lulu giving Helen a good kneading.

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Cat of the Month – January 2020

We kick start 2020 with a special for January’s Cat of the Month competition, a range from the very young to the super-senior, but all have made our jobs that little bit more pleasant. We have combined 2 cats into one as they come as a double-act, giving us Bo & Barney, Parker and Bob.

And the winner is – BO & BARNEY!!

WINNER – BO & BARNEY

These two, incredibly cute, 8 week old ginger boys have found themselves in a loving home. Senior cat Missy, who also resides there, has decided to ignore these silly bundles of high energy, and fortunately they keep each other entertained and keep out of her way. Barney had a bit of a dicky tum when he arrived – not an uncommon thing in young kittens, but fortunately he soon got better after some worming, probiotics and a sensible diet. Still to be done for the boys, and all-important – their courses of vaccinations against ‘flu, enteritis and leukaemia, https://vet2cat.co.uk/fees/kitten-starter-packages/ microchipping and a few months down the road (close your ears boys!) their neutering operations! When getting kittens it is a really good idea to get two siblings, or at least kittens that have grown up together. They tend to bond well at this age, and given the right resources as they get older, can remain close pals for life. Have some consideration for insurance as well – if you don’t have bottomless pockets of money to pay for unexpected illness or injury, it’s worthwhile looking into pet insurance – but read the smallprint!! There are some terrible policies out there, they are cheap for a reason!

 

Runner Up – Parker

Handsome 16-year old Parker started yowling at night and doing some strange behaviours. He recently lost his long-term feline companion Tabs, so Parker’s dad was concerned this was a sign of grief and missing her. Although grief is definitely recognised in animals, including cats, there are also a number of medical causes of behaviour like this in elderly cats, so we are embarking on looking into these. Parker is a beautiful cat and a cheeky chappy, but he has a very short tolerance for veterinary attention! Our plans to get a blood pressure reading, examine his eyes fully, get a urine sample and possibly a blood sample were all thwarted by the ‘Cat says No!’ scenario! We will go back for round 2 soon, and perhaps with some gabapentin on board we will be more successful!

 

Runner Up – Bob

Bob just pips Parker in seniority at the grand age of 17-years! We rather love Bob, he’s a bit of dude, he made runner up back in July last year as well! Bob has a very typical old cat combination of problems with hypertension (high blood pressure), chronic kidney disease, and arthritis https://vet2cat.co.uk/common-conditions-older-cat/. With a selection of medications and diet however, he is fit, happy, and mobile. When pain relief was commenced initially for post-dental recovery, it was noted how much more lively Bob had become, he was even running around the house! It is often thought that cats with kidney disease cannot be given pain relief, and sadly this means there are many elderly cats out there living out their retirement in chronic pain. Kidney cats can be given anti-inflammatory pain relief, as long as their hydration and eating is monitored, it has been shown that they live as long as kidney cats not given any pain relief (thus its use does not shorten their life expectancy). If there are significant reasons why they cannot have painkillers from the typical anti-inflammatory group of drugs, there are alternative forms of pain relief too, so always discuss this with your vet. Arthritis hurts and makes cats miserable, they deserve a pain-free last stage of their lives.

 

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Cat of the Month – December 2019

Its our very last Cat Of The Month for 2019! December was a very quiet month – not too unexpected as this is common in the vet world in the run up to Christmas, plus vet Claire having some time off. So out of the sum total of 5 cats we saw this month we have our 3 nominations to be December’s Cat of the Month!

This month we have selected Mr Blu, Squee and (post humously) Lily – and the winner is…SQUEE!

WINNER – SQUEE

Squee has gone from a runner-up in November to Winner in December! We love Squee, she’s the funniest patient we have. She seems to like our visits now, with no more need for pre-visit gabapentin, she is friendly, amenable and just the most adorable long haired black & white puss going! As is quite common in cats, Squee has really come out of her shell since the passing of her nemesis Squiddy –COTM October . Cats commonly don’t get on with other cats in the house, so will devise a space or time share arrangement in order to avoid ‘the other one’. Squee used to stay solely in the kitchen when Squiddy was around but is now coming out into other parts of the house and is enjoying having her slave all to herself! We were checking on Squee initially as a general senior cat check-up, including blood pressure and a urine test. Because she is 12 years old so falls into the Senior lifestage of cats Senior Cat Care4Life, we recommended a change of diet to better quality senior cat food. After a few weeks of trying hard to get her to eat the good stuff, Squee developed bad scabby skin – something she has had before due to stressful events. In fear of Squee starving herself to death, her slave gave in and started dishing out the junk food pouches again – only for the skin lesions to resolve! Squee had not eaten any of the medicines we prescribed because – well she’s a cat! – and had only had a mild topical wipe used on the skin, so we have chalked this one up to the stress associated with trying to change her diet! Some kids will only eat junk food and no veggies – some cats just want to eat the rubbish pouches and not the high-quality nutrition we want them to have. And sometimes we just have to pick our battles.

What a stunner! Squee was reluctant to give me back my Pet Remedy Valerian-sprayed blankie, and my nurse Emma!

Runner Up – Mr Blu

Mr Blu features in our health blog section about Feline Idiopathic Cystitis. Nurse Emma is a little bit in love with Mr Blu, even though the feeling is absolutely not mutual! Vet2Cat had to visit because his claws were getting so long, he had a bit of an altercation with a radiator grid. It was lovely to see him again since his cystitis troubles back in July. Although he is still super scared of us, with some gabapentin on board we can now manage to carefully and gently restrain him for an examination. One mani-pedi later and a general check over, we found he had done really well on his special diet, having lost 1kg since July! Along with all his environmental enrichment and a high level of wet food to make his pee more dilute and large in quantity, this weight loss is very good for his FIC condition. We just have to keep all our fingers and toes crossed now, as there is a pending house-move coming up!

Mr Blu having a better day than a vet-visit day, and then hiding under chairs so we can’t get to him!

 

 

Runner Up – Lily – resting in peace at Rainbow Bridge

If any case can demonstrate the absolute resilience of the feline species it is this beautiful British Shorthair babe, 18-year old Lily. Lily’s devoted mum called upon Vet2Cat because Lily would get so distressed with going into a practice, and with seeing different vets at each visit, she felt no one was really taking into account the whole picture. It was known that she previously had a mild stage of chronic kidney disease (CKD), but in the few weeks that we looked after her, we also diagnosed hypertension (high blood pressure), pyelonephritis (infection within the kidneys), a suspected bladder cancer, chorioretinitis (inflammation of the back of the eye where vision is perceived), and heart disease. Although she was improving well with treatment for some of these conditions, it was all too much for her little heart and she went into congestive heart failure. Lily’s carers made the brave decision to let her go to rest in peace.

“Remember our love
In a moment you’ll see
That I’m still here beside you
When you’re thinking of me.”

(From ‘Remember our Love’, by Julie Epp)

 

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Cat of the Month – November 2019

At the end of every month the Vet2Cat team picks out 3 nominations to be our prestigious Cat of the Month winner! Cats which have struck us as being particularly cute, cheeky and full of character.

This month we have selected Buck, Georgia and Squee – and the winner is…BUCK!

WINNER – BUCK

Buck was a runner-up for this award back in September, so I think his staff will be proud he’s our winner this month! Buck is such a dude, he loves our Pet Remedy Valerian spray we use at visits and starts rolling around in it! He is a whole chunk of love, a solid handsome white and tabby, and loves to patrol his territory. At home however he’s a bit of a lazy boy, I think his motto would be “Why stand when you can sit, why sit when you can lie down”! He’s become a bit arthritic in his senior years, we’re hoping some pain relief might get him moving a bit more!

Buck’s markings make him look a bit frowny, but he’s a lovely fella!

Runner Up – Georgia

Gorgeous ginger Georgia has had a tough life but still remains super friendly and chirpy. Georgia’s devoted mum took her on from a rescue organisation 6 years ago knowing she had issues. She had been hit by a car resulting in nerve damage to the bladder and the need to amputate her tail. As time has gone by, the bowel function has also become affected. She is on a concoction of medicines to try to keep the number ones and number twos flowing, and her mum has to be very vigilant. We had to help relieve a build up by performing an enema under sedation. Despite all this, she is a loving, adorable companion.

 She’s gorgeous and she knows it! Nurse Emma looks after Georgia as she recovers from her sedation.

Runner Up – Squee

Squee is just a gorgeous bundle of black and white fluff! She’s a chatty cat, always having conversations with the help. We did cheat a little for our first visit as we felt she was a teensy bit anxious, so she had a dose of gabapentin before our main visit. This is a useful ‘anxiolytic’ (meaning ‘breaks down anxiety’) for cats about to experience stressful experiences (vets, car journeys, moving house etc). With that on board, she was super chilled throughout her examination, she just fell asleep on nurse Emma’s lap!

Beautiful Squee just chillin’ on the scales!

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At the end of every month the Vet2Cat team picks out 3 nominations to be our prestigious Cat of the Month winner! Cats which have struck us as being particularly cute, cheeky and full of character. This month’s first prize is awarded posthumously, as a memorial to a beloved companion, a most wonderful puss called Squiddy. Runners up, but no less wonderful, are Paddy and Ronnie.

WINNER – SQUIDDY – resting in peace at Rainbow Bridge

Squiddy was one of those unusual gingers that are female, with a beautiful bushy coat that she loved being brushed by one of her adoring slaves. She had been with her family since she was 8 weeks of age, a tiny kitten from a litter of barn cats. Squiddy was an adept hunter, but never hurt her humans, very gentle and sweet-natured. She was never far from her adoring human-mum, a little furry ginger shadow. We diagnosed poor Squiddy with cancer of the nasal passages, after a CT scan and a biopsy. This was causing her to have difficulties breathing, and bloody discharges from the nose. Right up to the end, she carried on eating, and sunbathing in her favourite spots, but started showing signs of discomfort. Her loving family made that difficult decision to have her euthanised, but this was done in the comfort of her own home, surrounded by everyone she loved. Rest in Peace Squiddy, beautiful cat.

“Grieve not nor speak of me with tears but laugh and talk of me as if I were beside you…I loved you so – ’twas Heaven here with you.”  Isla Pasehal Richardson

   Squiddy as a little kitty and in her Heydays sunbathing in the garden

Runner Up – Paddy

Paddy found his way into his servants’ home about a year ago, after a period of living rough around a friend’s home, and setting up camp in their shed. Paddy is now very attached to his human-mum, and has her wrapped around his little paw, demanding handfeeding and fuss and attention as required! He had been suffering with a confusing set of problems involving the upper respiratory tract but also gastro-intestinal signs too. After some changes to his medications and diet, he appears to be on the mend, and Vet2Cat has also advised on ways to try to make him less dependent on mummy. Behavioural issues always take a long time to implement a change, so perseverance is the name of the game!

Paddy gets a check over from Dr Claire in the comfort of his own front room  

Runner Up – Ronnie

  Ronnie ignoring all our treats and appeasement tricks during our first visit!

Another ex-stray cat who has landed on his feet and into the care of a loving home. Ronnie was an intact male stray that his slaves started offering food and shelter to. He is still not very trusting of us humans, but has settled down reasonably well, if he can get outside when he wants to! On our first visit, it was very apparent he would be incredibly stressed by any attempt to restrain him for an examination. The whole ethos of Vet2Cat is to provide veterinary care to cats with as little stress as possible. Therefore, plans were made to take him over to Grove Vets – (one of the practices that kindly gives theatre space to Vet2Cat as required) – after a morning dose of calming gabapentin. Once there, a thorough examination was performed, he was anaesthetised to castrate him, microchip him and take a blood sample to test for the feline retroviruses FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus) and FeLV (Feline Leukaemia Virus) which are more common in intact male cats. Luckily for Ronnie, the tests were negative. Male cats left entire have a reduced life expectancy, because of the prevalence of these viral infections and other fighting related injuries. They spend a massive amount of time and energy patrolling and defending their territory, to the detriment of their own health. Now Ronnie can concentrate on more important things for a cat to do – like eating and sleeping! And with a microchip now implanted, he can be relocated back home should he go wandering off.

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Cat of the Month – September 2019

It’s that time of the month when we at Vet2Cat have to pick our Cat of the Month winner! We’ve narrowed it down again to our top 3, which are Buck, Gus and Zoë, and the winner is…..ZOË!!

WINNER – ZOË

Zoë is our first female winner so far! This may be a bit of a generalisation, but we do tend to find that male cats are generally that little bit more friendly with us when we visit than the girls can be. Zoë here, however, could not resist some Dreamies and a play with Ally the nurse, especially under the influence of Catnip! Zoë’s new carer took her on only a few weeks ago, with a bit of a unknown background, possibly involving multiple homes already. She is really affectionate but very scared of sudden movements. Now she is settling into a loving home and getting all the right care a cat should get – vaccinations, microchip, parasite treatment, and with Vet2Cat’s advice about cats’ key resources and nutrition, she can look forward to a better, healthier future. She is a stunningly beautiful classic tabby cat.

Here’s Zoë rolling around under the table, with the effects of catnip! Then in her favourite spot on the sofa back.

 

Runner Up – Buck

We featured Buck in a post a few weeks ago. This handsome fella keeps getting into scraps with other local cats, with the resulting wounds and abscesses requiring veterinary treatment. For the latest one, Buck’s staff called upon Vet2Cat as he does get himself a bit distressed with travelling to the vets. Buck was enjoying some Dreamies and Tuna Treats with nurse Ally, and got quite mellow on Pet Remedy Valerian spray, right up to the point of us cleaning up of his wound, a jab of pain relief and the start of his antibiotic course. We can’t expect our patients to enjoy these parts of our visits, but hey – you can’t have a rainbow without a little rain!

  Buck posing in the kitchen and looking sweet and innocent!

 

Runner Up – Gus

Gus is a 4-year-old Persian-cross, who has the nickname ‘Grumpy Gus’ – but he has had a lot to be grumpy about in his short life. Him and his sister Rosie, were not the most sociable of cats, it has to be said! Its not their fault though, they were 2 of a large hoard of cats taken into multiple rescue centres. They probably had not been socialised with humans during the all-important sensitive period when kittens. Two special people opted to take on these cats as they had been at the rescue centre such a long time, being overlooked by others because of their fearful natures. These kind people showed Gus and Rosie the respect they needed to settle in at their own time. Their human-fearing nature makes any veterinary care very difficult, even with home visiting! Sedation was required to examine Gus properly – he had always had very weepy, screwed-up eyes so these needed to be checked. He was suffering with Entropion (eyelids rolling inward) and excessively long lower eyelids; the result was the haired skin of the eyelids was constantly rubbing on his eye surface – ouch!! Gus was referred to Optivet Ophthalmology Referrals, to perform corrective surgery, and he recovered really well. Despite all this, he has allowed us to examine him without sedation at subsequent visits, so perhaps he’s not so grumpy now that his eyes are comfortable!

Gus finally able to see properly after corrective eyelid surgery, showing his playful side in a tunnel, and posing to show off all his glory!

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Once again, its very difficult to select out of all our lovely patients but we have a top 3, Frank, Toffee and Ratatouille… and the winner is FRANK!

Poor ol’ 14-year old Siamese, Frank, has been through the mill a bit. He’s already lost one eye last year. Recently however, he’d been having difficulty pooping. Due to a combination of issues, he developed severe constipation so needed to have an enema. He also has kidney disease and heart disease and was dehydrated. Its very common for old puss-cats to have multiple co-morbidities, it makes for increased risk of anaesthetics, and difficulties in treatments – often a treatment for one condition could make another condition worse, for example, he needed fluid therapy for the dehydration and constipation but if given too quickly, it could worsen his heart condition. After 3 days of slow fluid therapy, he was ready for an anaesthetic to unbung his bottom! Not the most pleasant of procedures us vets have to do, but what a difference it made to Frank! A much happier Siamese afterwards. He is now on a combination of laxatives and gut stimulants, and we have trained Frank’s staff to give him regular sub-cutaneous fluid therapy at home. This greatly helps support his kidneys and also the bowels. So far, he is tolerating this really well. Ah, the joys of feline medicine!! “Cats aren’t happy with one disease, they like to collect them” I once heard a feline specialist say, definitely the case for Frank!

Pictured here (from left to right):- Frank recovers in Emma’s arms post-enema; Nurse Emma training Frank’s mum how to give fluids under the skin; and a check-up with vet Claire – spot the patient!

 

Runner Up  -Toffee

Toffee is a very handsome Ginger Boy of 7 years, seen here looking rather non-chalant! While his pal Mischief was getting high on catnip, Toffee was more interested in keeping an eye on us, but was quite partial to some Thrive tuna treats and Easypill putty, which we used to administer a worming tablet. He wasn’t very impressed with receiving his Bravecto flea treatment, however!.

 

 

 

 

Runner Up – Ratatouille

This 5 year old Egyptian Mau was non-stop furry energy from the moment we arrived! He just loved everything! Catnip, food, and the feather toy was a big hit! Hard to get a non-blurry photo! FYI, if we use the feather toy for a cat, it is disinfected, rinsed and dried before any other cats touch it, so as to avoid the spread of any diseases.

 

 

The Five Freedoms of Animal Welfare

These apply to all animals in the care of humans, whether a house pet, a horse, farm or zoo animals:

  1. Freedom From Hunger and Thirst
  2. Freedom From Discomfort
  3. Freedom From Pain, Injury or Disease
  4. Freedom to Express Normal Behaviour
  5. Freedom From Fear and Distress

Purrfect Health Club

At Vet2Cat we offer monthly health plans to help spread the cost of your cat’s preventative health care.
Our range of monthly health plans have been devised to cover different cats’ lifestyles, ages and individual needs.
Read more about our Purrfect Health Club here.