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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16156
Experience:  Small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats, happy to discuss any questions you have.
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My cat has has a cut in the tip of her ear a week or so and

Customer Question

My cat has has a cut in the tip of her ear for about a week or so and it has made it crinkled at the tip (with it being scabbed over). But her tail has been touching the floor for about two weeks now. She is about 16 years old and does not do well with going to the vet for her shots. She has not had shots for about a year and a half. We have a dog that gets his shots regularly. I have felt it is pretty hard to put the cat through shots especially since she does not like. I was wondering why her tail is down to the floor and if I should take her to the vet because it may be something serious?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B,a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

Can you tell me if Gracie is dragging her tail?

Can she lift it at all? Or does she seem to be holding it down?

If you pinch the tail tip, does she respond like she can feel it?

Any changes to her passing of stool or urine?

Any issues with her walking?

Has she had any nasal or eye discharge? If so, what color? From one or both nostrils?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No discharge from either nose or eyes. no walking issues that I can tell. not walking much she sleeps a lot . no changes with urine and stool. She can lift her tail but the tip is down touching the floor. I pinch the tail tip and she responds that I had touched it.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
But she does sleep a lot because she has more so this last year (thinking it is due to her age).
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I just watched her walk and it looks as though she has not been walking much or well. She lay to her side when I petted her earlier.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you,

Now the ear issue sounds minor. Therefore, one would just want to keep it clean and let it heal as it is. If she is shaking her head or scratching at it (or her ears), then it could be secondary to an ear infection that would need to be treated.

Otherwise, the sneezing as well does sound to be a secondary issue. Often when cats are elderly, immunosuppressed, or going through something else, we can see mild flu signs arise. Often they do last a few weeks before they settle. Of course, supportive care can be of benefit. So, while the lack of discharge means we don't need to rush to start antibiotics, we can steam treat her (using a humidifier or shower steam, non-medicated saline nasal drops, and offer warmed smell canned foods to keep her getting nutrition/fluids into her.

Those aside, the tail is our main worry here. It isn't likely linked to the above issues. Now its good that she felt that pinch, since we can see lowered/dragged tails related to loss of tail nerve function and/or spinal disease. Since she can feel and move it, those would be less likely. Instead, we'd have to consider that since she can lift it but is not, that she may be holding it down due to discomfort. Common causes for that will be constipation (less likely here), anal gland issues, arthritis, and discomfort if she has had a fall or injury that she has not told us about. And if she isn't walking as much or as well, those last few become real worries for Gracie.

With this all in mind and since it has been 2 weeks already, it really would be ideal to have her seen. I appreciate she isn't keen on vet visits, but having a home visit from her regular vet or seeing if there is a mobile vet in your area that could come to her may be a way to get around that for her. And that way they can fully assess all those problem issues I noted and determine which is causing her bother here. And if they did find one of these focuses of discomfort, they could address it and start her on cat safe pain relief (since human ones are toxic for them)

Otherwise, as long as you don't think she is in severe discomfort, you could consider trying her with OTC nutrient supplements. These can at least help with arthritis and discomfort from possible mild injury. In regards ***** ***** we do find fish oil (Omega 3 +6) beneficial as it is a natural anti-inflammatory. When offering this we tend to give 20mg per pound of their body weight and many cats have no qualms about a bit of fish flavor added to their food. And its available over the counter at your vet, pet stores, and local health food stores. Otherwise, glucosamine/chondroitin supplementation can be of use in situations of kitty discomfort. These work by aiding joint suppleness by helping cartilage replenish itself and blocking enzyme destruction of cartilage in the joint. Often we can find this helpful in animals with arthritis. Normally we give kitties 50mg glucosamine + 15mg chondroitin aday per 10 pounds of body weight. So, this too would be something to consider for her.

Overall, it sounds like Gracie has a few different issues brewing. So, we'd want to use supportive care for the ear and sneezing. Otherwise, we can try the above for her tail since her signs suggest she is uncomfortable holding it up instead of being unable to. Though if that continues despite home care, we'd really want to have the vet out to her to just make sure she isn't severely sore and needing kitty safe pain relief for her wee tail.

I hope this information is helpful.

If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!

All the best,

Dr. B.

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If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’llbe happy to respond. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need as this is how I am credited for assisting you today. Thank you! : )

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for helping me today withe my cat Gracie. You answered my questions to the best of your ability especially since you were unable to see her.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

You are very welcome,

Not being able to examine them in person is always that one downside. Still, together you and I were still able to rule out some concerns for her. And with the responses she gave to your checks, we know we have a tail being held down (likely due to discomfort) as opposed to one that cannot be lifted (which is quite important since tail paralysis would be terrible news for wee Gracie).So, it is a step in the right direction for her. :)

All the best,

Dr. B.

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If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’llbe happy to respond. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need as this is how I am credited for assisting you today. Thank you! : )

Customer: replied 12 months ago.
Thank you for your much needed help.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 12 months ago.

You are very welcome & best wishes to you both,

Dr. B. :)

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**Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need as this is how I am credited for assisting you today. Thank you! : )

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