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Dr. Joey
Dr. Joey, Board Certified
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 4690
Experience:  15 yrs in practice, specialist canine/feline medicine
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JA: . What seems to be the problem? Customer: My

Customer Question

JA: Hello. What seems to be the problem?
Customer: My lady's cat is circling ... only to the left ... he started doing so less than an hour ago. he doesn't respond to his favorite cat treat ... something he's been wild for for the last several years ... he's 5 years old.
JA: I'll do all I can to help. What is wrong with the cat?
Customer: He would always come whenever we gave him this treat but today he ignores it. could he have had a stroke?
JA: Where does the cat seem to hurt?
Customer: we don't see any indication he's in pain but the circling is extremely worrisome. he was also acting scared of us earlier this morning which is extremely concerning as well as he's never afraid of us.
JA: OK. No obvious pain. Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about the cat?
Customer: He's a very healthy weight .. we feed him only organic food and regulate the amount of dry food he eats to prevent a UTI.
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Veterinarian about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
FYI, we have checked his pupils and they are not sized differently and both appear normal.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
His eyes do not flick from side to side either.
Expert:  Dr. Joey replied 5 months ago.
Hello I am Dr. Joey. Thanks for trusting me to help you and your pet today. I am a licensed veterinarian with over 16 years of experience. I look forward to working with you.Constant circling in one direction usually indicate a primary cerebral (brain) problem. Yes, it could be a stroke or another issue going on with his brain such as tumor, infection, blood clot, bleeding, and the list continues. The other possibility is vestibular syndrome, but this is what usually causes the rapid back and forth eye movement.Due to the sudden onset nature of this I must recommend you have him seen on emergency for an exam. He likely will need his blood pressure checked to make sure he is not hypertensive which can put him at risk for throwing clots in his body or having a brain bleed, and have some lab testing (CBC, chemistry profile and urine check). There is, unfortunately, not much you can do at home for this.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Understood. One other thing you may need to know ... he doesn't seem to be able to hear. he doesn't respond to sounds. That could be caused by a stroke, yes? I would have thought he was too young for a stroke. Yesterday I would have said he was in excellent health and at the top of his game.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
My lady is wondering whether he may have an ear infection also.
Expert:  Dr. Joey replied 5 months ago.
Yes, with a primary brain injury it is possible to affect hearing, although with circling it may not be that he cannot hear but is unphased by you trying to convince him to stop or do something else. There is often a compulsive need to circle that cannot be broken when a certain area of the brain is affected by a lesion or problem. :(Yes, stroke could cause this. Remember a stroke is technically a bleed within the brain. It can happen with cats who have high blood pressure. A different lesion in the brain such as tumor or parasite (toxoplasmosis) or even aberrant heartworm migration could cause this as well. Trauma also must be on our list (blow to the head or fall and hit his head). Sometimes a very high fever can cause injury to the brain too.An ear infection could certainly be playing a role, especially if this is not a brain lesion but instead an inner ear problem as we see with Vestibular syndrome, which in cats is most commonly associated with a polyp formation that grows in the ear. A polyp is treatable with surgery.
Expert:  Dr. Joey replied 5 months ago.

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Joey