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I'm adopting a bambino kitten, and by the looks of her, she…

Customer Question
I'm adopting a bambino...

I'm adopting a bambino kitten, and by the looks of her, she could have either lordosis or kyphosis of the spine. She's 12 weeks old, and her behavior is that of a normal kitten her age. I'm just wondering if she could live a normal life with these conditions?

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'm sorry to hear that. What is the kitten's name?

Elsie

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Elsie?

She has a very slight heart murmur when her HR is elevated.

Submitted: 11 months ago.Category: Cat Veterinary
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Answered in 31 minutes by:
9/21/2017
Cat Veterinarian: Dr Linda, Cat Veterinarian replied 11 months ago
Dr Linda
Dr Linda, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 1,792
Experience: I am a practicing veterinarian with over 20 years experience in a mixed animal practice.
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Hello, this is Dr. Linda. I hope I can help with your question.

First, Elsie is a beautiful kitten. I can see why you would want her. But should you? Spinal deformaties have the potential to produce far ranging health problems if the condition should continue to worsen. As Elsie matures, she could have greater impingment of the spinal cord by narrowing vertebral bodies that could result in urinary incontinence &/or chronic constipation, paresis ( weakness ), to complete paralysis. She may need surgery if something were to happen, or you may elect prophylactic surgery to hopefully prevent progression of clinical signs, if they were to appear. Surgery inherently contains its own risks. Then there is the heart murmur, which concerns me even more. Since you are adopting this kitten, & not purchasing her for a good sum, then you can elect to give her the best life possible. I have adopted in need animals knowing they will have short life spans, & while it kills me to lose them, I have loved every minute with them.

The only way to get a better picture of what might be in Elsie's future, is to have x rays done. A MRI would give a better picture of the spinal canal, but this will change as she ages. I would also recommend a cardiologist evaluate her heart. These are just suggestions as no one can say for sure what will happen in the future. If you can love her as she is, & plan a bit for an uncertain future, then by all means she will have a wonderful life, & may live a normal life span.

I hope this makes sense & you find the information useful. Please let me know if you have any additional questions or concerns.

Thank you.

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
I see. Thanks for the information. There is a pretty large adoption fee, and the owner has taken her to the vet to get a second opinion. Her vet agreed that she looks to have lordosis from her physical, so she did not get the X-ray to confirm it. Just from the images, would you concur? Thanks.
Cat Veterinarian: Dr Linda, Cat Veterinarian replied 11 months ago

Yes, I would concur as there is a pronounced ventral deviation to the spine. An x ray, however, would give more information as to the severity of the deformity, such as is the lordosis caused by a malformation of one or more of the vertebrae, or is there is a malunion or misalignment of the vertebrae. It does not add to the predictive nature or lifetime outcome, it just gives you more information for down the road. I just like to have as much information as I can before jumping head first into things.

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
I see. That makes sense. With your experience, would you say that a heart murmur could be correlated with a spinal deformity? Thank you.
Cat Veterinarian: Dr Linda, Cat Veterinarian replied 11 months ago

Not directly, but with one deformity we can sometimes see other problems. So there is not a direct correlation, just an unfortunate association. It probably has more to do with a poor breeding program. With some of these unusual breeds, there is always some line or in-breeding somewhere in the past. All you have to do is look at Old English Bulldogs & all their problems.

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