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Terri, Feline Healthcare Expert
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 20953
Experience:  Expert in feline health and behavior. 20 years experience with cats.
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I had a Maine coin, 8 year old male, indoor cat- VERY

Customer Question

Hello. I had a Maine coin, 8 year old male, indoor cat- VERY skittish, wouldn't let me get near him and would run away, matted fur which he wouldn't let me brush out....ate normally, some fur balls- he was laying under the table and his brother batted at him- he batted back and then let out a long groan and just died. No signs or symptoms. What do you think could have caused this????
JA: I'll do all I can to help. The Veterinarian will know if the Maine will be able to digest that. What is the Maine's name?
Customer: He died. His name was Wolfie
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Wolfie?
Customer: No I have his dad, brother and sister and had his mom too.
Submitted: 4 days ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  PitRottMommy replied 4 days ago.

Hello, JACustomer. I have been a Veterinary Nurse for over 15 years and would be happy to help you today. I'm reviewing your question right now.

Expert:  PitRottMommy replied 4 days ago.

1) Are these all purebred Maine coons?
2) Had Wolfie ever had a cardiac ultrasound with a veterinary cardiologist? If so, when?
3) Was he tested for the A31P mutation? If so, when?

Im also offering a phone call if that is easier.

Customer: replied 4 days ago.
His dad was full Maine coon (his dad is only about 6 mos older ) and his mom was an ASH
Expert:  PitRottMommy replied 4 days ago.

Had Wolfie ever had a cardiac ultrasound with a veterinary cardiologist? If so, when?

Was he tested for the A31P mutation? If so, when?

Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Never had ultrasound- couldn't ever get him to vet- too skittish
Expert:  PitRottMommy replied 4 days ago.

Given his background, it's very likely that he died of underlying heart disease. Maine coons are the poster children for heart disease in cats, primarily HCM, which has been greatly reduced breeders testing and regularly scanning their cats for heart disease and the A31P mutation. ASH are also predisposed to heart disease. The mother and father do not have to be symptomatic to have offspring that have heart disease. It's the number one cause for spontaneous death in cats, especially those with purebred parents, in fact.

Typically, males are more likely to have the affliction and to have more advanced disease. The best approach if you want a solid answer is to pay for a necropsy. Failing this, I would recommend testing the brother and sister and then dad for the A31P mutation. Although it won't diagnose every case, it can greatly help. As well, consider a cardiology visit for the remaining family to determine if anyone does have active heart disease.

More info here on predisposition and testing:

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Expert:  PitRottMommy replied 2 day ago.

Checking in, JA Customer. Did you have any additional questions I could answer?

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