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To Nekovet, please, re TurboBerry - Hi, Dr. B. We are going

out of town again (It...
To Nekovet, please, re TurboBerry - Hi, Dr. B. We are going out of town again (It happens every two weeks.), and I am again reticent to leave him by himself. I can have someone feed him but am concerned about manual water changes. The filter that the store said today would be a good fit is like a hurricane strength whirlpool for him and isn't even close to the right current. I'm very disappointed especially as we are leaving in a few hours and I don't have a way to keep the current moving.
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Answered in 14 hours by:
7/6/2013
Camille-Mod
Camille-Mod, Cat Mod
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Hi, I'm Camille and I am a Moderator for this topic. I sent your requested professional a message to follow up with you here, when they are back online.

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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
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Experience: I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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Good afternoon.

I am so sorry not to be able to get to you sooner (my weekend oncall and this is my first moment free). I am worried I have missed you but still want to leave a note in case I haven't. I would say to pretreat that water for your friend to change out while you are away. If Turboberry stresses with more then 2 cups, then I would say that we do want to not push it with four. (they can try more and just stop if they think he is stressing). Hopefully the water quality will stay borderline but we just don't want to push him too far if you know what I mean with the stress of a single major water change.

Let me know how you get on.
Take care,
Dr. B.
Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
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Customer reply replied 4 years ago

Thank you. =) I'm not sure what happened, but after we got back Monday, he seemed okay, just very pale. And then the tenth, I woke up to him breathing really hard, with his mouth at the surface all day. He was swimming vertically. I know the swimming vertically is a sign of swim bladder disorder, but it shouldn't be fatal. Anyway, he passed away that night. I haven't checked back yet regarding an answer because we left. You don't have to apologize. =) but you're very kind. Thank you so much for your help. I've learned so much from you, and my three year old told me last night that TurboBerry didn't die -- he went to heaven because Jesus wanted him to. And he said TurboBerry has friends in heaven who were waiting for him, and after we die, we will see his friends, too. Isn't that sweet, and wise? =) From my experience, he's right. I've seen my dogs on the other side.


 


By the way, if you can, please wish us luck. I've been up all night with Abby (she's the one who has allergies) who can't keep food down now and will need emergency care in the morning. I'm searching frantically tonight for someone who provides low cost care. My vet wants to hospitalize her, test her blood, and if necessary, provide fluids. That will be $280-$350 to start, and that's without testing, diagnosis, or treatment of the GI issue. I just started crying when she said that and said I can't afford that, i'll just have to wait for her to die. But my friend is trying to help me find low cost vet care clinics for indigent/disabled, and I found some tonight, too. Guess what? One of them is in this town. =) So that could be good news.


 


Thank you again for TurboBerry. I appreciate you so much.

I am so sorry to hear that wee Turboberry has passed on.

I think your son is very wise there and I do hope that one day we will get to see all the pets we have loved again (I can say as a vet who takes home pets with special needs, there will be a wee army of special pet souls up there waiting for me). And while its heart wrenching to lose him, please do take comfort in knowing that you did everything you could for him against those many issues stacked against him.

In regards XXXXX XXXXX I am so sorry to hear that she is unwell as well. If she is vomiting severely and potentially cannot keep even water down, then it will be difficult to treat her (even symptomatically) without at least injectable anti-vomiting medication on board to stop the vomiting and help address the ongoing issues (since often very nauseous cats will vomit any oral medications).

At the moment, if her vomiting is severe, then do consider resting her stomach by withholding food (ie for 6-8 hours). Keep water down in small amounts for her (since drinking large volumes in one go can also make the vomit). Furthermore, if she is nauseous but keeping down water and not constantly vomiting, you can try her with an antacid to try to settle her stomach at least for tonight. Obviously if you think she is going to bring it right back up or she is just constantly vomiting, then its not worth the risk trying oral medication. But if you did want to try an antacid, there are a number of them that are available over the counter and pet friendly. I would advise only treating with one, but the two I tend to recommend are Pepcid (LINK) or Zantac (LINK) Ideally, it should be given about 20-30 minutes before food is even offered to just help settle the stomach.

In regards XXXXX XXXXX bloods, I do think at her age it would be a good idea. The reason is because vomiting can be due to infectious diseases (ie bacteria, viruses, etc) but at her age we'd also need to make sure its not a secondary sign associated with a hormonal condition (ie hyperthyroidism) or organ dysfunction (ie kidneys, liver, etc). As well, bloods are very useful at ruling out pancreatitis, a very common vomiting condition of the cat.

In regards XXXXX XXXXX need for IV fluids, that will very much hinge on what is triggering her vomiting, whether the bloods demonstrate an issue (ie like pancreatitis or kidney disease), and what her current hydration status is post-vomiting. Now obviously the first two cannot be determined at home but you can check her hydration at the moment to give you an idea of whether she is dehydrated or not. To do so, we need to check to see if the eyes appear sunken, if her gums are tacky instead of wet/moist, and whether she has a "skin tent" when you lift the skin (example). To see how to check these parameters for dehydration, you can find a wee video on this HERE (they use a large dog but the principles are exactly the same for cats). If she is already showing signs of dehydration, then this will give you a hint that she will likely need IV fluids from the vet as part of getting her well.

Finally, just to add to the hunt for support for Abby's care, I would say that both VCA veterinary hospitals (LINK) and Banfield Veterinary hospitals (LINK) offer free first consults which might take a wee bit of the cost. As well, if you haven't already, do check out the Humane Society's database. They have a lot of branches nationwide, along with ties to other assistance organizations, that can keep down costs and subsidize care (LINK) and may be able to help as well. But in any case, I am very glad to see there is a local low cost clinic that you can aid you in at least halting her vomiting and give you time to discover the trigger for it.

All the best for wee Abby,
Dr. B.
Dr. B.
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Experience: I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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Customer reply replied 4 years ago

Thank you. =)

 

I have to go out of town again but wanted to check in to say that Abby is doing well and had great blood work results today. Everything came back great for her age (14 years old), and she was only dehydrated. She received some fluid under her skin, and then got a shot for anti-nausea and antibiotic for her teeth till she can get in for the surgery. The vet gave her fluids and taught us how to do the sub-q treatment at home, like you suggested, and we have given her one (although it shot out halfway through and caused quite a commotion for a minute), and will repeat tonight and then several times tomorrow. For some reason, she said Abby doesn't have to be on antibiotics for three days before doing her teeth. She now says Abby just needs to stop vomiting (which she has after the shot today). Weird. We talked about it in length and very specifically so it's odd. Anyway, after her vomiting is totally gone, I am going to schedule her at the beginning of August to have her teeth done. I am very excited for her. I know TurboBerry is in a better place, but it would have been hard to lose Abby, too. I have had her since she was six weeks old, and she was underdeveloped/special needs for a long time and needed extra nurturing as a baby. Maybe that's part of why we are very close.

 

Everything you said was exactly perfect. You are such a great teacher, and I felt so much better reading your response before going in so that I would be able to understand the reasoning behind the blood work, etc. even though my vet at Banfield is super great, too. I love her, too. I am very fortunate to know both of you. =) Today cost about $330, and I have spent a couple hundred on TurboBerry, so I am hoping for no more crises for awhile. =D

 

I am glad you have rescued special needs animals. Yes they are in heaven waiting. It's really cute because one of my dogs actually went to heaven in a carrier. I know that sounds funny. Most of mine are like that, and while the responsible thing, in a way, for me would be to turn them over to a shelter to find them homes, I know that most would be euthanized the minute I walked out the door, due to age or health problems, so I just can't be responsible for murder. I just can't. So I'm trudging along, incompetent and irresponsible and an utter failure at being a pet parent, but I am trying. =)

 

Thank you again for today, and thank you for TurboBerry. He actually had new fin growth, had no ich, and his pop eye was totally gone when I woke up that morning. It was a miracle. So maybe God answered my prayer of no longer asking that he live but that he no longer suffer. =)

 

P.S. I know how kind you are, but you don't have to respond to this. I know it says you will write back, etc., but I just wanted to update you and thank you. I know you have a regular job and other justanswer patients. =) So you don't have to write back. Thanks again.

 

Hi,

Just a quick wee note to say that I am very glad to hear that the bloods were all normal for Abby and it sounds like you are on the right track on addressing her vomiting there. Hopefully things will settle for her and she can get her dental as planned (and I have to say it is nice to have had those bloods if a dental is due in the near future since it just can help us breathe a wee bit easier knowing that her organs are fit and healthy and won't have any issue with the anesthesia).

As well, I think you don't give yourself enough credit there because I can easily tell that you have a big heart and are striving to do the best for your wee ones And while the ending was ultimately a sad one, getting Turboberry's Ich, popeye and fin rot under control speaks volumes about your dedication and diligent care. So, please know that you are a great owner and that you are doing the best you can for your wee ones.

Have a lovely day & all the best to Abby and yourself,
Dr B.
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