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Dr. Andy
Dr. Andy, Medical Director
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 29958
Experience:  UC Davis graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
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Hi My cat went to the vet 4 days ago for his regular rabies/distemper

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My cat went to the vet 4 days ago for his regular rabies/distemper injection and also had his ears cleaned. Since then he is falling over and the eyes are constantly moving back and forward. He is not eating but is hungry. He is 12yrs old and this is totally out of character. He has since been back to the vet and they gave him Saline injections and now on an antibiotic (Baytril). They are confused as to why this is happening. This is extremely worrying. Please give me some input. Thanks
Welcome! My name isXXXXX am a UC Davis graduate, and currently, a Medical Director of a veterinary hospital.

I am sorry to hear about this concern for Pepper.

What you are describing sounds consistent with possible vestibular disease.
The most common symptoms can occur in any combination and include: head tilting, walking in circles, vomiting,
fast eye movements back and forth (nystagmus) or the eyes pinned to one direction (strabismus), and/or drunk-like walking

Vestibular Disease in Cats

Generally, vestibular disease is caused by either:
1. Central disease which includes anything within the brain
2. Peripheral disease which includes problems outside the brain like inner ear infections, toxin exposure, organ problems

I cannot rule-out that the ear cleaning didn't cause a ear problem. It has to be a consideration since ear flushing in cats can lead to inner ear complications.

If that was the case, I would be hoping for some improvement over next few days.

The falling over and eye movement, known as nystagmus, are the give aways that this is a vestibular problem.

I would ask the vet if it is okay to try giving some bonine (meclizine) or dramamine for motion sickness.

Please let me know if there is anything I did not cover for you. I hope that information has been helpful.
Please remember to select Reply to Expert, if for any reason you need further clarification, have more questions, or were expecting a different type of answer. Please, hold off providing your feedback rating until you have asked all your questions. My goal is to try and provide you the best answer possible.
Dr. Andy

Dr. Andy and 2 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

thank you. You have confirmed what we had thought. Do you know if I try to feed her with a syringe that will keep fluids in? She is resistant to this and I do not want to force her.

I wouldn't force her the water that way. Not worth the potential complication.

If necessary, you can discuss with your vet tomorrow about learning how to give fluids under the skin at home (subcutaneously) for at least the next few days until she hopefully improves. Many owners learn how to do fluids under the skin hat have cats with kidney failure.

Dr. Andy
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

thanks, I will discuss this. Your prompt reply is very much appreciated.


You are very welcome!

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