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I have 5 cats. Over the past 8 months 3 have contracted

Hello. I have 5...

Hello. I have 5 cats. Over the past 8 months 3 have contracted different types of bacterial infections. (1)- male, had a Coccidioides lung infection & his lymph nodes in his chest cavity were greatly enlarged on C.T. examination. It was treated with fluconazole.( 2)- 13 y/o Female has small cell lymphoma. She recently had Pancreatitis.It was also treated with antibiotics. (3)-Now, another Female cat is in the hospital with some kind of large bowel bacterial infection. The biopsies C & S are not back yet, but there were a lot of Neutrophils noted in the biopsies. My concern is could there be something in the environment or my home that is making them sick? This seems quite abnormal to me for so many to be sick in such a short time frame. I am a retired R.N. and I've had cats my whole life. I have never experienced anything like this before and I am very worried.

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. There are all sorts of infections the cat can pick up. I'll have you talk to the Veterinarian who'll sort out what is wrong and help you decide what to do about it. Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about the cat?

Just one other thing I am thinking of. I have another male cat that is somewhat mean tempered. He spends a lot of time outdoors and he does eat mice. when I try to keep him inside he gets mean and picks on the other cats and hisses at me so I let him out to keep the peace. I'm wondering if he could possibly be bringing home something & infecting the other cats while sharing the same dry food bowl? They eat the wet food separately.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
I just read the disclaimer. I did not realise my questions are for public view, and also that the Veterinarian does not give advice or even a recommendation. I'm not sure what to expect from this service. I will give this a try and I do hope it will help.
Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Thank you!
Answered in 10 hours by:
3/7/2018
CalCatDoc
CalCatDoc, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 574
Experience: I have 31 years of clinical experience, with the past 22 years being in a feline-exclusive practice.
Verified

Hi! I'm CalCatDoc and I can help with your question.

Are you still available to discuss your concerns? I notice you posted this last night.

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As for the Coccidioides aka Valley Fever - that is found in dust/dirt in the desert SW, especially the San Joaquin Valley and we have a pocket of it here in the Simi Valley area near Los Angeles. Are you by chance in So Cal?

I predicted an uptick in Valley Fever after all our fires in the local mountains and smoke blowing everywhere from those winds. And the Santa Clarita fires two years ago with all their ash and dust, too. When did he come down with it?

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Hello,
I just saw your reply. It's 1:25 pm. I live in Sacramento. He came down with it about 3 months ago. He had already had a serious medical issue when he was young, about 4 years ago. Some type of Auto-immune issue where his Spleen was destroying his RBC's. He also had some type of bacteria on his RBC's. The Internal Med Specialist had to consult with a Doctor from a University somewhere west of here.I can't remember where. The condition was unusual for cats to have, to the best of my recollection. He eventually needed a splenectomy. The Surgeon said it was very large. I thought he was fine. I took him in for his usual check up, he had coughed mabey 4 or 5 times over a week. i mentioned it and that's how we found the Valley Fever.
Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Do you have any thoughts about my other concerns?

Well the Valley Fever isn't contagious from one animal to another. It's just a random disease harbored in soil that strikes the rare individual.

As for the one with lymphoma - again that is an individual disease that strikes randomly, though risk factors include exposure to tobacco smoke. Cats with lymphoma, as they weaken and develop secondary problems, are more susceptible to all sorts of infections. The pancreatitis probably doesn't have anything to do with the lymphoma.

And as far as the third cat with the as-yet undiagnosed problem, I can't really comment without more information.

If the cats are exposed to tobacco smoke, that can set them up for all sorts of health problems. So my first question is - any tobacco smoke?

Diet is another thing they probably have in common, but I can't see diet being involved in their problems given the information I have. You should of course avoid feeding fish because that contributes greatly to GI problems (including inflammatory bowel disease), urinary disease, and skin disease.

I do see rotating Giardia problems in crowded, dirty cat rescue/shelter situationsm but that requires poor sanitation which I suspect isn't a problem in your home.

Having an in/out cat is of course a risk, particularly for FeLV and FIV. So he should be tested annually and kept vaccinated for FeLV along with FVRCP and Rabies. FeLV and FIV can lead to all sorts of health problems as they progress.

But in all honesty, you are probably just dealing with a run of bad luck. It's really a stretch to link any of these three cases. But your own vet has more detailed information than I do so please be sure to address this concern directly with them. I'm not the last word on the matter.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Thank you. I appreciate the input. I'm not sure if your still online, I had to step away for a business call. There is no tobacco. No one in my family smokes. The house is cleaned regularly. I provide them with clean dishes @ every meal, new water bowls every day and I clean 3 separate, very large cat boxes twice daily. My Vet agrees that this is not connected, but to me it seems very unusual due to the great care I take with my cats. You seem very knowledgeable and I like the way you addressed my concerns. You have changed my view on this service and I will now probably rejoin. The only thing is the time factor. I waited over an hour last night thinking it was an instant type of dialogue exchange while the " time estimate " kept telling over & over that it would only be 8 minutes longer. After an hour of that I was very frustrated. Anyway. Thank you again. I really appreciate the help!

I'm sorry about your experience. I think most of us vets on here work day jobs and sleep at night so they probably have trouble finding people to hang out here waiting for customers to appear at night. I'm usually gone by 7 or 8 PM for the most part. We don't have assigned hours - just whenever we can be available.

So it's just how the platform is set up, I guess.

Happy I was able to help a bit anyway. Please let me know if you think of any other questions about your kitties' situation.

And when you're through, please rate my response so I can be credited with helping you.

CalCatDoc
CalCatDoc, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 574
Experience: I have 31 years of clinical experience, with the past 22 years being in a feline-exclusive practice.
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Hi,

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

CalCatDoc
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