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My vet is 99% certain my cat has intestinal cancer

smithduke
May 7th, 2009, 04:43 PM
My 15 year old cat Howie has lost some weight recently and started having major diarrhea. A bland diet and Flagyl didn't help so he had a biopsy today. The vet just called and said his intestinal walls were very thick and his lymph nodes were swollen and "angry" looking. I won't know the results of the biopsy until early next week but the vet said he's 99% sure that he has cancer. He did say that sometimes these things can fool even the best vet so there still could be a chance he has a severe form of irritable bowel syndrome.:fingerscr

Has anyone had a cat with this type of cancer? If so, I'd like to hear how things went and what I can expect. I hope we will be able to spend more quality time with him but he's already uncomfortable and getting dehydrated from diarrhea. Poor baby! It's been nothing but bad news for our cats lately. In the past month and a half, I've lost my two twenty year old cats and now my Howie could be next! :cry::cry:

Thanks

Jim Hall
May 7th, 2009, 05:45 PM
20and 15 wow you must take exceptional care of your friends

I havent had any experiance with this but i just wanted to wish you luck

im sure someone will be bye this thread to help

smithduke
May 7th, 2009, 06:55 PM
Thanks Jim. It's always wonderful to have support and caring! As my vet says, we grow our cats old. We found a stray cat in 1988 and the vet said he was about 7+ years old at the time. We named him Bob and he was the greatest, bravest and most loyal cat you could ask for. Bob would actually try to attack passing dogs being walked on a leash if he thought we were in danger! Our Bob passed away in 2006 and was at least 26 or more years old. He had no illnesses at the time but was just... old. What a life he had!!! :lovestruck::cat:

Like everyone on these forums, we love our cats very, very much! I have to admit, we've been very blessed to have had them live as long as they did!! Luck was on our side.

smithduke
May 7th, 2009, 09:52 PM
I think everyone must be tired of hearing from me in light of all my tragedies. Believe me, I wouldn't know what to say either if I were you. I just want to thank those who've read my posts and who've wished me well. :grouphug:

catlover2
May 7th, 2009, 10:46 PM
Compliment yourself on taking such wonderful care of your cats---26 y.o. my goodness! I do hope you can get some help for "Howie". I had an almost 16 y.o. cat die a few years ago and her beloved 18 y.o. catfriend grieved and fretted over her loss for six months---meowing for her, insisting I open closet doors for her to look inside, and sitting in places her friend sat. When I got a kitten to keep her company she went downhill in a matter of a few months, even tho the kitten was very respectful of her. I wonder if Howie is missing his 20 y.o.cat friends a lot too? We can only give them as much love as possible and when its time for them to go to the "rainbow bridge" make it as comfortable as possible.

hazelrunpack
May 7th, 2009, 11:30 PM
Sorry to hear that Howie is ailing now, too, smithduke! :grouphug:

:fingerscr that the biopsy doesn't show cancer. Not that IBD is easy to treat, but it often can be managed easier than cancer.

Hang in there and see what the results are. You and Howie are in my thoughts and prayers.

growler~GateKeeper
May 8th, 2009, 02:28 AM
Hi smithduke I'm sorry your kitties are having more troubles :grouphug:

I hope we will be able to spend more quality time with him but he's already uncomfortable and getting dehydrated from diarrhea

Has the vet given/suggested either subq or IV fluids to replace the fluids lost? I would suggest you speak to your vet about it, dehydration can aggrevate other conditions as well as just making the animal feel awful.

Some links on cancer & IBD:
http://www.felineoutreach.org/EducationDetail.asp?cat=Cancer
http://harpsie.com/cancer.htm
http://harpsie.com/colitis_ibd.htm#ibd

:goodvibes: for the test results :grouphug:

smithduke
May 9th, 2009, 12:02 AM
catlover2, how sad for your cats! That's what I worry about with Howie's "girlfriend" Jessie. They hug and spoon together and lay in bed with each other all day. I agree that losing our other girls have changed the entire dynamic of our house! There's a sense that something is missing and a sadness. Although we try to be upbeat, it's hard to know that Howie is sick.

growler and hazel, thanks for the wishes and advice. He came home today from his surgery and is on pain meds and antibiotics. The vet put him on a special diet and we just have to wait until the biopsy's come back. Despite his huge incision and effects of the anesthesia, Howie is doing pretty well. He just wants our love, kisses and hugs. Howie is a lovely boy and right now my hubby is in bed and Howie is laying next to him. I''m headed up there to give them both a big kiss.:lovestruck::lovestruck:

Thanks for all the wishes and support. I'll let you know how he's doing.:grouphug:

chico2
May 9th, 2009, 07:58 AM
Smithduke,don't ever think that we would tire of reading your posts,whether it be happy or sad news:cat:
I am :pray:Howie will be ok,no ugly cancer:fingerscr
All your cats have had very long happy lives,I can only hope mine will live that long.
:pray:for good news fo sweet Howie:goodvibes:

hazelrunpack
May 9th, 2009, 09:27 AM
Howie sounds like a sweetie. Please do keep us posted on how he's doing.

When will you get the biopsy results back? The waiting is so hard. :grouphug:

smithduke
May 9th, 2009, 01:05 PM
The results of the biopsy won't be in until at least Monday. It seems like forever. Howie is on Hills Science S/D canned cat food and isn't allowed to eat any solids. Part of his intestinal tract is almost closed in some areas so solids would get stuck. He's also on Metacam for pain and Clavamox antibiotic. This combination seems to be really helping him feel better! So far he's not showing any signs of dehydration like he did before the surgery.

Howie is a very vocal cat and he meowed at me today for the first time in a week. It was a happy meow. :cat::D

I'm so happy I've found this website because it's like talking to friends who truly understand my love for my pets! :p:p

smithduke
May 9th, 2009, 01:09 PM
Smithduke,don't ever think that we would tire of reading your posts,whether it be happy or sad news:cat:
I am :pray:Howie will be ok,no ugly cancer:fingerscr
All your cats have had very long happy lives,I can only hope mine will live that long.
:pray:for good news fo sweet Howie:goodvibes:


Thanks, Chico. My wish :pray: for you and everyone is to be able to have all your pets live a long, healthy, life. However long, I know it will be happy and loving!:2huggers:

chico2
May 9th, 2009, 03:37 PM
Smithduke,you can be sure,that everyone here loves their pets,be it cats/dogs or whatever and every single one of us understand your worry about Howie.
I am glad he seems to feel better though:lovestruck:
Is there a reason he has to be on Hills Diet.if not I would recommend Wellness canned food,my cats all love it,it's grain-free,which I think Hills is not,Howie would love it:cat:

smithduke
May 9th, 2009, 08:47 PM
Hi Chico,

The vet put Howie on the Hills Science S/D and told us to mix it with some low sodium chicken broth to thin it out. I believe his food needs to be thin because parts of his intestines are almost completely blocked from the inflammation. I've never heard of Wellness food. Is it a prescription diet?

sugarcatmom
May 9th, 2009, 10:26 PM
I agree with chico that there are foods with much better ingredients than Hill's. Prescription diets are a big scam and vets really shouldn't be giving out nutrition advice, given their lack of knowledge on the subject. Here are the ingredients for S/D (which is typically "prescribed" for cats with struvite crystals in their urine, by the way):

Pork By-Products, Pork Liver, Water, Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols and citric acid), Rice, Corn Starch, Ground Whole Grain Corn, Calcium Sulfate, Powdered Cellulose, DL-Methionine,....

Heavy on the plant matter, low on quality protein. Completely inappropriate ingredients for an obligate carnivore, but especially one with intestinal issues. I strongly suggest finding a grain-free canned food like the Wellness (http://www.wellnesspetfood.com/cat_wellness_can_index.html) that chico mentioned (there's a store locator on their website), or something with a novel protein source like Innova Evo 95% (http://www.naturapet.com/brands/evo.asp) venison or duck, or Nature's Variety Instinct (http://www.naturesvariety.com/instinct_cat_can) (which also comes in rabbit and lamb). The ultimate would be a raw food diet, which has saved the life of many a cat suffering from bowel inflammation. I urge you to read this link: http://www.catnutrition.org/index.php
And here is more info on feline nutrition in general: www.catinfo.org

Also just want to add a warning about the Metacam. Has your cat had blood work and a urinalysis done to check how his kidneys are doing? Metacam has been known to cause kidney damage in some cats and should never be used in cats with pre-existing renal insufficiency. Buprenex or Fentanyl are safer choices.

Magicwildwolf69
May 9th, 2009, 10:34 PM
I've never had a cat with this issue but then again my older babies are just turning five in july. I hope they live as long as yours have! lots of :goodvibes::goodvibes: for the test results and that it is good news.

TeriM
May 9th, 2009, 10:37 PM
I don't have any advice but wanted to send some hugs and good vibes your way.

:grouphug: :goodvibes: :goodvibes: :grouphug:.

Love4himies
May 10th, 2009, 06:31 AM
Awww, smthduke, I am so sorry :sad: :grouphug:. The wait to get the test results can seem like forever.

I agree with sugarcatmom, a better quality food that is appropriate for a carnivore may be better for your kitty's digestion.

pbpatti
May 10th, 2009, 10:19 AM
I just wanted to send my :grouphug::pray: that your Howie will get better. pbp

chico2
May 10th, 2009, 03:58 PM
Smithduke,Wellness can be found in most pet-supply stores,not in grocery-stores and places like Wal-Mart,you are in the US,so I am sure you can find good quality food.
Mine love the Wellness No-grain(cats don't need grains)but there are several others you can try,equally good,you can still dilute the food with the broth.
Check your phone-book,I am sure you have specialized pet-food stores where you are.
Wellness is not cheap,but I am sure neither is the vet-food,my vet don't even suggest Hills to me,he knows I would never feed that to my cats.

smithduke
May 13th, 2009, 11:17 PM
Hi Chico,

I found the Wellness food at our small pet store in town. Howie LOVES it! As a matter of fact (not to be gross) his stool was semi-solid rather than a river. TMI, eh? Anyway, thanks for the recommendation!! Your support means a lot to me! :lovestruck:

Bad news first...Howie's biopsy came back and he does have cancer. It's not one nodule but throughout his intestinal tract.

Now, the good new...our vet said it's a low grade cancer and he can end up living for a good while. He's having the biopsy tested further to see what grade it is. One grade is better than the other but I forgot which was which.

More good news...Howie is his old self again, which is baffling to me because the vet didn't really do anything except the biopsies and put him on the Hills Science S/D and antibiotics. He is ravenous, like he's been since he was a kitten, and meowing more and more (in a happy way). Today Howie was playing under the covers on the bed with me and attacking my hand. Could it have anything to do with the diet? Hmmmm...that's what I'm thinking!!! :cat: The extra love we've been showering upon him helps!!!

For everyone else who's responded, I so appreciate your great advice, hugs and wishes ! :thankyou: :lovestruck:

As much as the news was sad today, I'm happy that my Howie has some quality time left and is feeling great! I'm hoping for a miracle!!! :pray:

growler~GateKeeper
May 13th, 2009, 11:53 PM
I'm so sorry about the cancer diagnosis :2huggers: :sad: I have my :fingerscr it is the lowest grade possible :goodvibes: I wish you to have many many more good years with Howie :goodvibes: :grouphug:

If you haven't already I would suggest a read through http://harpsie.com/cancer.htm, it is a site written by a regular person whose cat had cancer, lots of good tips/info in there.

One thing with diet, is finding a higher protein, higher fat but low to no carb diet as cancer seems to "feed off" of carbs.

smithduke
May 14th, 2009, 01:26 AM
Thanks Growler!

Great advice. I've seen a big change in Howie since I've started feeding him the Wellness food and I'm convinced that it's helped him immensely! Interesting about cancer and carbohydrates... It sounds logical since cats are mainly carnivores. I'm going to continue with the Wellness food (Thanks to Chico) and see what happens. Thanks for for info on the website! :pawprint::thumbs up

zztopp
May 14th, 2009, 05:39 AM
That is wonderful that the cat food change has helped so much! Our dogs are on the Wellness brand of food as well and they love it ... I've seen such a positive change in them :)

There are many ways to manage cancers. I would suggest also looking into some homeopathic remedies that could help.

In the horse world, when we want to send special prayers and positive thoughts to someone and their pet, we send 'jingles,' which are made from the sound of the chain on our bits. So, all of us at the farm both two- and four- legged are sending our jingles to you and Howie that his cancer is mild :)

- S
Black River Farm

hazelrunpack
May 14th, 2009, 09:25 PM
I'm sorry you didn't get better news, smithduke, but I wish you and Howie many years together and all the best! :goodvibes: It's so good to hear that he's perked up and is feeling better! :thumbs up

chico2
May 15th, 2009, 07:17 AM
Smithduke,I am very sorry about the cancer:sad:
Even though it's bad news,now you know and Howie and you will hopefully have a long time together.
Often times not knowing what is wrong can be worse than the actual diagnosis,cancer is certainly not what we want to hear,but now you can spend your time loving him,rather than tests,tests and more tests:grouphug:

smithduke
May 18th, 2009, 12:16 AM
Chico, you are so right!!! Since his diagnosis, I treasure every day with my Howie and he seems so much better. Love conquers all!!! I thank you so much for your insight!! :grouphug::lovestruck:

rubymillie
May 20th, 2009, 09:31 AM
I thought i would post an encouraging story for you.

Three weeks ago, my 18-month old cat (still just a baby in my eyes) was rushed to the vet with breathing difficulties. The vet thought it was heart failure, which is terminal, and I was given lots of pills for her. Two weeks later, she went in to the vet again, but this time he thought he felt a lump in her chest and stomach. She went in for ultrasound, biopsies and blood tests. Over the weekend she deteriorated sharply and i was convinced i'd lost her. On Monday 18th May 2009 she was diagnosed with thymic lymphoma with a seconary growth in the abdomen.

She started chemotherapy on Tuesday.

Today is Wednesday - she is currently sitting on my lap, having eaten a good sized lunch and sharpened her claws on my sofa! Her breathing has returned to normal and I even caught her grooming herself.

We are still not out of the woods - Ruby continues to fight for her life and although cure is not a possibility, I am hoping to get remission.

Cats respond well to chemotherapy - so I am sending you all my very best wishes that Howie can fight his cancer. He knows that you love him very much - and I think that cats have a desire to live. With that combination - he has the best possible chance.

RM

smithduke
May 21st, 2009, 12:09 AM
Rubymillie,

I'm so sorry about your baby! You obviously love Ruby and that's what really matters to her!! Many people don't opt for chemo so I give you big hugs :2huggers: for going the extra mile. Like you've said, I've also heard that cat's tolerate chemo well, but my hubby, who is a big mush in most things, doesn't think it will work on Howie because he's almost 16 years old. I'm more the optimist so I'm going to work on convincing him to agree to the chemo. Just a suggestion...Howie has been a new cat since being on Wellness canned food! We ran out of it and gave him a commercial canned food and we saw a big difference in him, on the negative side. He was tired, quiet and wasn't is usual "Howie self"! We quickly started him back on the Wellness food and he perked right up. I think Wellness is the way to go, especially when you have a cat who is sick.

Please let me know how Ruby is doing! I send my prayers :pray: to her and hope she overcomes this horrible disease!!!

smithduke
June 1st, 2009, 09:03 PM
Rubymillie, After your post, I told my hubbie how well Ruby was doing after the chemo and he agreed to look into it. Thanks so much!

We're taking Howie to the vet on Thursday and I think we're going to opt for chemo. The biopsy showed he has a low grade intestinal T-Cell lymphoma. I read a report on treatment of cats with what Howie has. The results showed:

56% of cats achieved a complete response average remission duration of 897 days

39% achieved a partial response and had an average remission duration of 428 days

5% of cats had no response

Even if we can't give Howie a longer life, giving him a better quality of life will be worth it. The vet did say there are other treatments that can make him more comfortable in addition to chemo.

Howie is such a "young" cat for being almost 16 years old and he deserves every chance we can give him.:lovestruck:

Magicwildwolf69
June 1st, 2009, 10:18 PM
glad to hear howie is doing well and may have a longer life then everyone first thought. i wish you luck in everything and look foward to reading more about him :lovestruck:

smithduke
June 1st, 2009, 10:32 PM
To Growler,

The links you sent to me are great.

One was particularly disturbing to me, which discussed introducing agents that change DNA and can lead to cancer. Howie has always been fed, locked in our downstairs bathroom, because he's basically a pig and will eat everyone else's food rather than his own. We often use odor eliminator in the bathroom without thinking that his food dish would be contaminated with the chemicals. Sometimes, I should say most times, Howie is in such a rush to eat, and instead of rinsing and cleaning his dish we've just plopped the food into it. I wonder if we've contributed to his cancer in this way? :lightbulb: From now on, all our cats dishes will be cleaned well and we won't be using the spray because we store our dry cat food in close proximity to the bathroom. :thumbs up

smithduke
June 1st, 2009, 10:36 PM
glad to hear howie is doing well and may have a longer life then everyone first thought. i wish you luck in everything and look foward to reading more about him :lovestruck:

Awww...thanks so much! He's such a sweet, loving boy! I always tell my husband that if Howie were a person, he would be our best friend! :lovestruck:

growler~GateKeeper
June 1st, 2009, 11:35 PM
To Growler,

The links you sent to me are great.

One was particularly disturbing to me, which discussed introducing agents that change DNA and can lead to cancer. Howie has always been fed, locked in our downstairs bathroom, because he's basically a pig and will eat everyone else's food rather than his own. We often use odor eliminator in the bathroom without thinking that his food dish would be contaminated with the chemicals. Sometimes, I should say most times, Howie is in such a rush to eat, and instead of rinsing and cleaning his dish we've just plopped the food into it. I wonder if we've contributed to his cancer in this way? :lightbulb: From now on, all our cats dishes will be cleaned well and we won't be using the spray because we store our dry cat food in close proximity to the bathroom. :thumbs up

The woman who wrote that site also did the main kidney failure site I refer to often, all of it has been learned through her personal experience & research.

There are so many possibilites of things that can lead to various illnesses in animals & people too, even things that are designed to make life easier - like the cat food cans with pop top lids - the inner lining of the can when exposed to the air releases chemicals that have been linked to causing Hyperthyroidism in cats, same with fire retardant material. :shrug:

So many innocent little things we didn't know about might have contributed to cancer, but then it also could be genetic - which means it would've happened anyways :shrug: I would say cancer is the hardest to pinpoint because no one really knows where it comes from or why some get it & others don't :shrug: The only thing we can do is try to change the outcome by learning from our own & other's experiences in order to lessen the impact of what we didn't know. You are already stepping in the right direction :thumbs up

Many many :goodvibes: :pray: :fingerscr for a great outcome for Howie

smithduke
June 1st, 2009, 11:54 PM
Growler, I totally agree with everything you said. After our Dillon and Kitty had passed and since Howie's diagnosis, we've been giving our cats Wellness canned cat food and Core dry food only. I knew they'd love the canned food but I was worried they wouldn't enjoy the dry. So far, they've been choosing the dry food over canned. We have a Maine Coon and she loves flaked fish food! She goes absolutely nuts when we feed the fish so one day we decided to give her a taste. It's now her favorite treat. Core dry food has a very similar odor to the fish flakes and all our kitties love it! Thanks to all who recommended Wellness food! :thankyou::thankyou:

growler~GateKeeper
June 2nd, 2009, 12:10 AM
and all your cats are healthier now for that little bit of knowledge :D

I wish I had known two years ago what I do now about holistic and raw cat food

smithduke
June 2nd, 2009, 02:09 AM
and all your cats are healthier now for that little bit of knowledge :D

I wish I had known two years ago what I do now about holistic and raw cat food


Agreed! :D:thumbs up

chico2
June 2nd, 2009, 07:41 AM
Smithduke,I respect your decision 100% :grouphug:
About 15yrs ago 2 of my cats had cancer,but the discovery was too late for any treatment:sad:
Now,with my 3 cats,I am much more aware and always check for strange lumps..more aware of everything really,food,environment..
Even switched vet,because I did not feel right with my old vets.
:fingerscrfor Howie and you on Thursday:fingerscr

smithduke
June 2nd, 2009, 12:10 PM
Thanks Chico! :grouphug:

I too wish that we had given Kitty chemo before it was too late. Even though she died when she was 21, I think chemo would have given her a few more years. Yesterday I just suddenly broke down over her death, again. :cry: When I took her to the vet it was as if she knew what was happening and was at peace, unless she was too sick to care.

We tried switching vets this past year but realized our old vet was the best choice for us. We started going to him in 1988 when Kitty was a kitten and he was just in his first year of practice. In 1993 we moved 30 miles away but it's worth the ride. We use a different vet for our guinea pigs because our "cat" vet isn't the right fit for them. People, aka neighbors, think I'm crazy to drive that far yet they ask my advice on their animals. :confused:

chico2
June 2nd, 2009, 04:11 PM
Smithduke,I would drive 30 miles for a vet I know and trust for sure,so you are not crazy:laughing:
But luckily we have a vet in every streetcorner(well,not really:laughing:)and I have found a vet I was recommended whom I really love.
Apparently cats/dogs are not bothered by chemo as much as people,hope that goes for Howie too:fingerscr

Magicwildwolf69
June 2nd, 2009, 10:11 PM
Awww...thanks so much! He's such a sweet, loving boy! I always tell my husband that if Howie were a person, he would be our best friend! :lovestruck:

even though they aren't humans or people i still consider my cats my best friends :lovestruck: well maybe except eclipse...who likes to bite me a lot....:laughing:

smithduke
June 2nd, 2009, 11:09 PM
Magic, the cats that bite you are the best! They keep you guessing...one minute they hate you and the next they're loving you! :lovestruck: Mine have bitten me from time to time! My most traumatic moment was when my Dillon, who had never, ever, shown any aggression before, came home from the vet after being spayed. I picked her up to love her and comfort her and she promptly bit me in the neck, hard!!! When she did that, I cried, not from the pain, but from hurt feelings!!

Still, when my cats bite, I know I've gone too far and I have respect their space! :pawprint: :laughing:

I definitely don't treat my cats as humans and allow them to be cats. Even so, I can see their personality. All animals have personalities and that's what I love about them!

mari1
June 11th, 2009, 10:50 AM
This a reply to Smithduke. A lot of people may not go that extra mile in treating their cat with cancer, not because they don't want to, it's because they don't have the financial means to do it. Our cat has a large tumor in her mouth. Treatment is out of the question because we don't have the money. Plus having her go through all that would just make her more miserable. For now were going to keep her comfortable as long as we can till its time to put her to sleep.

chico2
June 11th, 2009, 04:08 PM
mari,sorry to hear about your kitty and you are right,not everyone has the money,or someone to borrow from,I wish more vets would give a payment-plan.
My vet does,but maybe only to people he knows are good for it.

Smithduke,it's Thursday how did the vet-visit go:confused::cat:

smithduke
June 11th, 2009, 05:05 PM
Mari1, I'm so sorry! :sorry: My intention wasn't to offend anyone by my statement. Let me rephrase: I admire people, who have the means, and opt for chemo. Even then, it may not be the best choice for some!

Even though we have the money to get Howie chemo, it was still a tough decision for my hubby, mainly because of the amount of money it will cost. It took some major convincing, begging, crying, etc. for him to agree to it. Howie is fifteen and in great shape, other than cancer, but he's still fifteen. Hubby is more logical than I am, and I'd probably be broke right now if it wasn't for him!! :D

Like you, we didn't have our cat treated for her cancer and we had to make the decision to say goodbye a few weeks ago. :rip: My sympathy goes out to you and your kitty! :grouphug: I wish you didn't have to go through this and I hope she's still comfortable! My cat had a tumor on her leg which spread to her eye, back leg and lymph nodes. Still, in your case it must be a much more difficult situation to go through because the tumor is in her mouth and affects her eating. My heart goes out to you!!:cry:

Chico,

We're going to start Howie's chemo next week. The first four appointments will be in and out, and he'll have to stay in the entire day for the last one. That treatment will cause vomiting, but they'll give him something to counteract that. Otherwise he shouldn't have many symptoms. If his stools start to become solid, we'll know that the chemo took. :pray: Howie has been so lovable towards me, more than usual. He comes into bed and lays his paws on my neck and puts his head next to mine. If I'm talking to him and stop, he touches my mouth as if to say, "keep going"! :lovestruck::lovestruck:

I'll keep you up-to-date.:goodvibes:

growler~GateKeeper
June 12th, 2009, 12:15 AM
Everyone here at pets.ca will be sending out lots and lots of :goodvibes: :goodvibes: for Howie next week :grouphug:

chico2
June 12th, 2009, 08:08 AM
Smithduke,it's strange you should say that.
My Sammy who had cancer, would in his last few weeks sleep right by my head,something he never did before,but he was very,very sick in the end.
It was almost like he said good-bye to me.
I am not saying that's what Howie is doing,but I believe they can feel something is up and he gets great comfort from you.
With all the love and good vibes:goodvibes: we are sending him,I am sure he'll do great with the chemo:grouphug:something that was not an option for my Sammy.

smithduke
June 12th, 2009, 11:12 AM
Hi Chico,

I'm sure it's the good vibes and love that have been sent to him! :D :goodvibes::lovestruck:

Before Howie got sick I have to admit he was very annoying, but funny! He'd meow constantly to wake us up for breakfast and knock things off the night stand until we got out of bed. My rings and chapstick would be all over the floor! If that didn't work, he'd attack our Maine Coon, Sula. It was all noise and no one would ever get hurt. Sula became afraid of Howie, so of course he had to attack her whenever he wanted attention from us! LOL. There were times that I had to yell at him to stop or lock him in the bedroom so he was out of my hair.

Since Howie's illness, he's calmed down a lot and has become more lovable. I'm much more affectionate with him because I realize my time with him is shorter than I'd hoped. :sad: It opened my eyes to what a special, smart, funny cat Howie is! He obviously senses the change in me and is letting me know how much it means to him! :lovestruck: Plus he's getting yummy Wellness food. Food is Howie's life!!!

He's such a good boy!! We named him Howie after Howard Stern, because they're both bad boys!!

catlover2
June 12th, 2009, 03:27 PM
So sorry to hear of the biopsy results, but delighted to hear that "Howie" seems to have a "new lease on life" with a change in his food. I switched my cats to Wellness as well, and altho they weren't sick, they do have more energy and are happier.

He certainly sounds like a much happier cat now, and hope the chemo treatments will be successful :fingerscr and give him and you many more wonderful years together. Howie sounds like quite a character! :cat:

chico2
June 12th, 2009, 03:49 PM
smithduke,you have a Maine Coon too?
I LOVE Maine Coons,if you have the time and the inclination,could we see a pic of Sula,she must be beautiful.
I had a Maine Coon once many,many yrs ago,brown Tabby colors,he was a beauty,but only lived 3 yrs:sad:

smithduke
June 12th, 2009, 05:43 PM
Thanks Catlover2. Since Howie's been on the Wellness, he's stopped vomiting but the diarrhea is still just as bad. He only has it once a day, but I think that's all I'd be able to take!!!:yuck: I read that cancer will feed on carbohydrates so I give him Core dry food as well. Howie seems much happier and less lethargic. Yes, he's quite a character to say the least!!! Just a quick story...Howie likes to play fetch with a fuzzy ball. It's a lot of fun but he likes to bring us the ball in the middle of the night while we're sleeping. I'll pretend to be asleep and I'll hear the ball drop a few times. I know he's dropping the ball and pushing it towards me so I'll pick it up. Still ignoring him, I'll suddenly feel this saliva filled ball on my face. When I open my eyes, Howie will give me a head butt and rub his drooly mouth on my eye. :laughing:

He also opens up the little trash can in the bathroom to pick out the Q-Tips that have ear wax on them and then licks them. :D

Chico,

Here's a pic of Sula. She's also a character!!! I think she's the most intelligent cat I've ever had! Sula came from two abusive homes before we got her. I begged the women who had her last, to let me keep her! Her kids were hitting her, teasing her and when Sula hid, the kids would poke her with a toy sword. She's a biter but we know "the look" before she can get us! LOL. We never reprimand Sula because she just needs time to trust. She's much better than when we first got her.

I can never get a photo of Sula that doesn't have white eyes. Red eye doesn't fix it.

http://i257.photobucket.com/albums/hh204/smithduke/IMG_0752.jpg

sugarcatmom
June 12th, 2009, 07:10 PM
Sula is a stunner, and you're an angel for rescuing her from those brats.

Since Howie's been on the Wellness, he's stopped vomiting but the diarrhea is still just as bad.

Have you ever tried mixing some slippery elm bark powder into Howie's food? I had a cat with severe IBD and the only thing that helped firm up his poop was about 1/4 tsp of SEB 2 or 3 times a day.

I read that cancer will feed on carbohydrates so I give him Core dry food as well.

While Core is certainly lower in carbs than most dry foods, it's still more than an acceptable amount at 11% of calories (cats in the "wild" eat less than 5% carbs). If it's a matter of making Howie happy than of course he should be spoiled rotten, but otherwise I'd try to minimize the amount of Core he eats. An all wet food diet is preferable.


Howie seems much happier and less lethargic.

Fantastic! :thumbs up

smithduke
June 12th, 2009, 10:07 PM
[QUOTE=sugarcatmom;790032]Sula is a stunner, and you're an angel for rescuing her from those brats.

I know you would have done it too, but thanks! She's a wonderful and quirky cat. I actually trained her to sit, stay and come! My husband,who was underwhelmed with Sula at first, now loves her and swears Sula is going to say actual words one day because she's that intelligent! Unfortunately she's become a tad "large" and hasn't been grooming herself very well. Don't let anyone tell you Maine Coon's don't need constant grooming! Because Sula is "quirky" and bites, she will only let us brush her head and shoulders. Anywhere else is off limits. She started to get very matted under her armpits and belly. I discovered she loved fish food and I was able to trim some of the mats while she ate the fish food up. Even so, her fur was still so matted that I took her to the vet to get shaved. She looked so adorable afterward. I'll send a pic.

Have you ever tried mixing some slippery elm bark powder into Howie's food? I had a cat with severe IBD and the only thing that helped firm up his poop was about 1/4 tsp of SEB 2 or 3 times a day.

Thanks! Do they like the taste? Howie is very picky when it come to things like that. I have never been able to give him medicine, liquid or pills. One time when Howie was in the hospital for a urinary tract blockage, the vet (not our regular vet because it was an emergency) said he wrestled with him for 1/2 hour and still couldn't give him the meds. It was a Sunday and he actually had to call in an vet tech to help. :mwaha:

While Core is certainly lower in carbs than most dry foods, it's still more than an acceptable amount at 11% of calories (cats in the "wild" eat less than 5% carbs). If it's a matter of making Howie happy than of course he should be spoiled rotten, but otherwise I'd try to minimize the amount of Core he eats. An all wet food diet is preferable.

So, even that little amount of carbs could affect the way his cancer does or doesn't metastasize? No dry food ever for Howie....ever? We do give him cooked chicken breast every night so he's definitely spoiled! :lovestruck:

Thanks again for all your advice! :cat:

smithduke
June 12th, 2009, 10:42 PM
Here's a photo of Sula shaved. Although she looks miserable, she was much more comfy with her new look! We've almost sat on her a few times because she is the exact color of our sofa, or as we say it the U.S., couch! :thumbs up. Can you see the "devil" in her eyes? She's really a very nice cat...I swear!!! LOL!

http://i257.photobucket.com/albums/hh204/smithduke/PICTURES038.jpg

I told you Maine Coon's sleep in odd positions! Where is Sula??

http://i257.photobucket.com/albums/hh204/smithduke/PICTURES030.jpg

The vet left fur on Sula's head and neck and legs. Too cute!!!

http://i257.photobucket.com/albums/hh204/smithduke/IMG_1002.jpg

sugarcatmom
June 12th, 2009, 10:59 PM
Thanks! Do they like the taste?

Some cats do, some don't. It's not a particularly strong or offensive taste, maybe slightly sweet. Whenever my cat needs a dose of SEB (works for constipation as well), I mix a small amount (1/4 tsp or less) into an extra tasty treat like chicken baby food or plain yogurt. He's also very picky but doesn't usually mind it this way.

So, even that little amount of carbs could affect the way his cancer does or doesn't metastasize? No dry food ever for Howie....ever? We do give him cooked chicken breast every night so he's definitely spoiled! :lovestruck:

Fresh chicken is an excellent treat to give Howie. My cat loves it ever so slightly broiled in the oven for a minute. Just enough to bring out the flavours and aroma, but not enough to cook it completely.

I can't say whether feeding Core is going to have any effect on the cancer one way or the other. If Howie really loves it and you think he does better with a small amount in his diet, than who am I to say he shouldn't get any. But the truth is that dry food is heavily processed and starchy, kinda like breakfast cereal, and doesn't offer a cat any benefits. It's mostly just a human convenience.

Those "nudie" pics of Sula are great! :cloud9:

smithduke
June 12th, 2009, 11:52 PM
Sugurcat,

Sula's quite the sexy girl isn't she? :censored: :laughing:

On a more serious note, the Chinese proverb on your posts: "To close your eyes will not ease another's pain." made a big impact on our decision to finally let our Kitty cross over. My hubby didn't want to do it and didn't think it was her time. With Chico's advise and the proverb, I decided that it was time, so I took her myself. It was my first experience taking a beloved pet to be put to sleep. Kitty somehow knew what was happening and just seemed to accept her fate. She was so dehydrated that the vet had a hard time finding a vein. When he went up further in her thigh, he started the injection. I wanted to scream "STOP" but I knew it wasn't the right thing to do. As he gave Kitty her injection she sat up suddenly. I asked the vet why she did that and he said it was because she probably felt whoosy. For me, that was the most upsetting moment of the whole ordeal! Did she feel pain? Was she afraid? Thoughts were running through my head and then, Kitty was gone! :cry::cry: I hate to cry in front of anyone but at that moment I knew that was it! I wept out loud, which I've never done in front of strangers. The thought running through my head was, "I can't believe I've allowed this to happen to her and I've put put her life in my hands" It literally felt like I was dreaming! I stayed with her, kissed her and told her how sorry I was. It was hard to leave her laying there on the table!

I'm so sorry that I went off on a tangent but it actually feels good to voice my feelings! Since I took Kitty, I've been very quiet about her passing for reasons I don't really understand myself.

Something very strange happened last week that has never happened before. I was making lunch for my daughter and reached up onto the baker's rack where I stored a box of Cheez-It's. I suddenly heard Kitty's meow. Kitty didn't have a "meow" but a "brrrrkow" sound. Not thinking, I actually stepped aside to let Kitty through and then I realized what I was doing. I thought it was the floor squeaking so I tried to duplicate it several times since. Nothing sounded even similar. As a matter of fact, I was never able to get a sound out of the exact movement I made when I heard her.

Why would Kitty's spirit be with me over the other cats, family members, loved one's, etc.? I don't know the answer but I really think it was Kitty. Hopefully I don't sound crazy. Maybe it was wishful thinking but if that were the case, than I would have "heard" from the other cats that have passed on. I would have loved to have them "visit" me also but it never happened.

I have babbled on way too much tonight!!! I must have been in the mood to release all my emotions from the past few months. If there's anywhere I know someone will understand, it's here. :lovestruck:

P.S. Forgive any typo's but I don't feel like going back to review and I'm tired and spent! :sleepy:

chico2
June 13th, 2009, 07:02 AM
Smithduke,Sula is beautiful,the same coloring as my Tigger had,I can see the little"devil"in her eyes:laughing:
Nekkid Sula is kind of funny,but I bet she felt relief,she seems to hide her face in embarrassment though,but still beautiful:lovestruck:
Thank's for the pics:thumbs up
Your telling about Kitty,got me teary-eyed,remembering having to send 4 of my cats to the Bridge myself.
I think it's very important for us to be there when they pass,the last person they see is the one they know and love.

As for hearing Kitty,she is just telling you she's ok and you did the right thing:cat:
Shortly after my Sammy had passed,I could still "see"him in his favorite chair,could still"feel"him in bed with me,but that's normal,I think:confused:.
They are small creatures,but their presence is huge and we love them forever:cat:

sugarcatmom
June 13th, 2009, 11:25 AM
If there's anywhere I know someone will understand, it's here. :lovestruck:

I totally agree, the understanding and compassion on this board is phenomenal. Your story of Kitty brought tears to my eyes and reminded me of when I had to PTS my cat, Egypt, several years ago. He had been very sick for over a month with IBD. It wasn't supposed to kill him. But several thousands of dollars later, it was clear he was only getting weaker and sicker, and one morning he gave me "the look". It pierced my heart like a sword but I knew instantly what I had to do. My husband and I couldn't get him to the vet fast enough. I don't know how he was able to drive through the tears but thank goodness he was there because I was a complete mess. Took me a long time to recover from his death. I take solace in knowing that a bit of his soul is in his brother, Aztec, who has adopted some of Egypt's characteristics since his death.

It's never an easy decision, even when it's clear what you have to do. My heart goes out to you for your loss of Kitty and for the struggles you're facing with Howie. :grouphug:

smithduke
June 13th, 2009, 04:53 PM
Your telling about Kitty,got me teary-eyed,remembering having to send 4 of my cats to the Bridge myself.

It never gets easier! :grouphug: :cry:

As for hearing Kitty,she is just telling you she's ok and you did the right thing:cat:
Shortly after my Sammy had passed,I could still "see"him in his favorite chair,could still"feel"him in bed with me,but that's normal,I think:confused:.
They are small creatures,but their presence is huge and we love them forever:cat:

I hope I wasn't imagining it. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we heard from everyone that we ever lost to let us know they're ok? Just like in Ghost Whisperer, one of my favorite shows! :thumbs up

smithduke
June 13th, 2009, 05:03 PM
I totally agree, the understanding and compassion on this board is phenomenal. Your story of Kitty brought tears to my eyes and reminded me of when I had to PTS my cat, Egypt, several years ago. He had been very sick for over a month with IBD. It wasn't supposed to kill him. But several thousands of dollars later, it was clear he was only getting weaker and sicker, and one morning he gave me "the look". It pierced my heart like a sword but I knew instantly what I had to do. My husband and I couldn't get him to the vet fast enough. I don't know how he was able to drive through the tears but thank goodness he was there because I was a complete mess. Took me a long time to recover from his death. I take solace in knowing that a bit of his soul is in his brother, Aztec, who has adopted some of Egypt's characteristics since his death.

It's never an easy decision, even when it's clear what you have to do. My heart goes out to you for your loss of Kitty and for the struggles you're facing with Howie. :grouphug:


That's exactly how it felt! My hubby and I were talking and we both felt like we were putting them to death! In our minds we know it's the right thing to do, but our heart and conscience, tell us otherwise.

I think I've said this on another post but it bears repeating. My sister has been a ICU nurse for years and she finds it so hard to watch someone suffer, waiting to die. Although medications are much better than they used to be to keep patients comfortable, it's still a terrible thing. When Dr. Kevorkian was charged with murder she and many of the doctors in the hospital agreed that he was actually doing a great public service for the people he helped pass on. My sister says pets are the lucky ones because when the pain gets to be too much for them, we can help them take it away.

catlover2
June 14th, 2009, 01:14 PM
smithduke, My sincere condolences on Howie. Having a beloved pet euthanized is one of the hardest things you'll ever do and it never gets easier. I've gone through many where I've had a cat or kitten euthanized. One of my most memorable times was one of my favourite show cats, Missy, who had a "natural death" of heart attack at age 17. For a few days after her death, I could feel her walking on me while I was in bed. Another favourite, Mona, also had a heart attack at age 15. I occasionally caught glimpses of her out of the corner of my eye. Mona's lifelong cat friend, Ladybug, missed her terribly for months meowing and constantly looking for her and would sit where Mona used to sit and often Ladybug would look as if she were watching a cat walk across the room, and I do think she could see her Mona's "spirit" even tho I couldn't at the time. Mona was very special to me and I had a very hard time with her death and felt quite depressed for many months as I missed her so much. This is perfectly natural to mourn the death of a pet as it is for a person.

Many years ago in '80s another cat, Blueboy, had to be euthanized as a result of an inoperable bladder tumour at age 15. I used to catch glimpses of him occasionally sitting in his favourite spots for some months after his death. For some reason or other, I experienced no glimpses or feelings or sensations for other cats that died over the years. It was just a special few.

I don't believe any love is ever forgotten, and I certainly hope to be reunited with my fur friends in the spiritual world.

"No heaven will not Heaven be; without my pets to welcome me" ~ unknown

smithduke
June 14th, 2009, 02:37 PM
Hi Catlover2. Howie's not gone yet, thank goodness! It was Kitty (such an original name, eh? :D) that "visited" me.

It's amazing that you've felt the presence of so many of your cats! You're very blessed and they must have loved you very much! :lovestruck:

This would be a great topic to start....experiences of "hauntings" from pets. Haunting sounds like such a scary word. How about, Stories of departed pets that have visited. I wouldn't even know where to post it. Anyone else can feel free to start it. :thumbs up If anyone does start a thread, let me know so I can read it. Thanks.

chico2
June 14th, 2009, 02:45 PM
catlover,OMG you scared me:laughing:
I thought Howie had passed,not so,luckily:thumbs up

smithduke
June 14th, 2009, 02:51 PM
smithduke,you have a Maine Coon too?
I LOVE Maine Coons,if you have the time and the inclination,could we see a pic of Sula,she must be beautiful.
I had a Maine Coon once many,many yrs ago,brown Tabby colors,he was a beauty,but only lived 3 yrs:sad:

Chico, what happened to your Maine Coon that he only lived to three? :rip:

P.S. You'd be a good one to start the new thread on "hauntings" :whistle:

chico2
June 14th, 2009, 03:42 PM
smithduke,it was many,many years ago(I am old you know)that we had Tigger.
First off,he escaped outside one day,a neighbor up the street started his car and thought something was wrong,stopped his car right away.
Checked under the hood and there was Tigger,
He was badly cut,but survived,one eye less and about 30 stitches on his tummy:sad:
However,and you have to remember this was a long time ago,I did not know what I know now.
He was not feeling well and when I finally got him to the vet,he had kidney-stones and UTI,the vet did not think he could save him,so at 3 yrs old,my beautiful Tigger was put down.
Had it been today,it would have been very different,Tigger would have survived:sad:
In those days,the only food available was Purina Cat-Chow,Pussn'Boots etc...Thank Dog that has changed:cat:

As for haunting,yeah,I know,I am a little weird..LOL

smithduke
June 14th, 2009, 07:55 PM
Oh...how horrible!!!! Poor Tigger! :cry::cry:

I'm beyond words except to say how sorry I am! :grouphug:

catlover2
June 14th, 2009, 11:11 PM
[QUOTE=smithduke;790357]Hi Catlover2. Howie's not gone yet, thank goodness! It was Kitty (such an original name, eh? :D) that "visited" me. ...

O thank goodness Howie is still with you! I guess I assumed it was Howie. :confused: I should have read back farther in the posts, and yes now I see it was Kitty.

Stories of pets departed has always fascinated me. Good idea for a new thread.

By the way, Sula is a gorgeous Maine Coon---love her colour! She's looks like a brown patched tabby or brown torbie as some call it.

smithduke
June 15th, 2009, 12:02 AM
catlover2, I totally understand!! Many people refer to their cats as their "Kitty". My cats name was actually named "Kitty" so I can understand how it could confuse you!

And now....I now nominate you to start the new thread about our dear,departed pets!! :thumbs up

Kidding...:D

catlover2
June 15th, 2009, 08:15 AM
smithduke, Thanks for the suggestion to start a new thread. :thumbs up OK here it is in "General Forum" - "Departed pets....who revisit?" This will be very interesting and fun, I'm sure.

smithduke
June 15th, 2009, 03:48 PM
Catlover2, thanks! :thankyou: It will be fun to read all the stories!

smithduke
June 17th, 2009, 12:07 AM
Just a quick update before Howie starts his first Chemo treatment on Thursday.

I spoke to our vet last week and he said the first four treatments would be "in and out" and the last one would be an all day event. Mostly because the last treatment has the worst side effects. The biggest side effect is vomiting, which Howie will receive meds to counteract that.

Howie has T-Cell Lymphoma of the intestines but it's a low grade type of cancer.

When I called to make the appointments, the receptionist told me that each of his treatments would take all day. I questioned her and told her what the Dr. had told me. She said that most treatments last all day but she checked with the Dr. just in case. The answer was just what the vet initially told me. In and out for four weeks and the last one on an outpatient bases.

I was elated to hear that because I'm hoping and praying that Howie's case isn't as severe as most and his treatment doesn't need to be as aggressive. :pray::pray::pray::pray:


I'm passing this info on, just in case anyone has a cat with this particular type of cancer, so they can have something to go by.:thumbs up

I'll let you know how my Howie feels on Thursday!! Thanks again for all your support!! :grouphug:

growler~GateKeeper
June 17th, 2009, 12:40 AM
Many :goodvibes: for an easy treatment day for Howie :grouphug:

smithduke
June 17th, 2009, 01:19 AM
Thanks Growler! :goodvibes: :grouphug:

Nice to see someone stays up as late as I do! Off to bed for me as it's just after 2:15 AM. Night night!:sleepy:

growler~GateKeeper
June 17th, 2009, 01:24 AM
Your welcome :grouphug: I'll be thinking of Howie on Thurs

Nite :sleepy: Smithduke - it's only 11:20pm here on the West Coast :D

chico2
June 17th, 2009, 06:48 AM
Smithduke,I too hope Howie will handle it well:pray::fingerscr:goodvibes:
I've never known of a cat receiving Chemo,it will be a learning-experience to read how he does.
How is he at the vets?,hopefully not like my boys:fingerscr
:grouphug:to you and Howie:goodvibes::goodvibes:

smithduke
June 17th, 2009, 07:29 AM
Thanks Chico! :grouphug::goodvibes::fingerscr

Actually, he's very good at the vet. When we bring him home in the carrier he comes out initially and then wants to go back in, just for the fun of it! :cat:

I've never known anyone who's cat has had chemo either, nor intestinal cancer! I hope this thread will help guide and support anyone who has a cat going through t-cell lymphoma and chemo. Of course I'd never wish it on anyone! :fingerscr

hazelrunpack
June 17th, 2009, 09:57 AM
:goodvibes: for an easy treatment with few side effects!

smithduke
June 17th, 2009, 02:48 PM
:goodvibes: for an easy treatment with few side effects!


:fingerscr:goodvibes::pray::thankyou:

chico2
June 17th, 2009, 03:45 PM
You know you are wonderful,right:grouphug:to help Howie out this way,hopefully by the time he's done,everything will be ok:fingerscr

smithduke
June 17th, 2009, 05:13 PM
You know you are wonderful,right:grouphug:to help Howie out this way,hopefully by the time he's done,everything will be ok:fingerscr

Thanks Chico! :thankyou: I think it's Howie who is wonderful! :lovestruck::cloud9: Thankfully I'm blessed to have the means to get him some help! From what I've read, without treatment he only has a few months to live.

Tomorrow at 3:30 PM is the big moment....I'll let you know how he feels tomorrow night.

Thanks to everyone for all your support!!! :thumbs up:goodvibes: I've found such great comfort on this board and it's wonderful to know that others understand! :grouphug: By far, the best message board I've ever been on!!! :D

pbpatti
June 17th, 2009, 11:34 PM
:grouphug: to you and DH, Howie will surprise you all, I just know it. He does just melt into your couch. Pretty handsome boy you have. pbp

smithduke
June 18th, 2009, 12:50 AM
:grouphug: to you and DH, Howie will surprise you all, I just know it. He does just melt into your couch. Pretty handsome boy you have. pbp


pbpatti, you make me teary eyed!!! You seem to "get" what Howie is all about!!! I agree and I feel he will surprise us as well! Just tonight, I let him out onto our patio to get what little sun we've had here in New Jersey. When I went out to see what he was up to, he came running and meowing to me. I haven't seen him act like that it months!!! Could it be that our Kitty is visiting him??? Howie has been eating well, except for a day or two here and there and overall seems happy! As I was typing this, he just jumped up on me to say hi! I call him my "Googy Boy", which he loves. You're right, he is a very handsome boy!!! :lovestruck::lovestruck:

smithduke
June 18th, 2009, 06:30 PM
Hi. We're back home after Howie's first chemo treatment! You would never know he had some powerful drugs injected into him today. He's eating, happy and lovable! The vet said he should start feeling better very quickly. :thumbs up:D

A few weeks ago we had him at the vet, to get his stitches out from the biopsy, and Howie had gained 1/3lb. Unfortunately today they said he had lost 1lb. This type of cancer, even though it's low-grade, doesn't have a long survival time so it's important that we started his treatment quickly.

The vet gave Howie two injections. One was Elispar and the other was Vincristine. After each injection Howie was given I.V. fluids to "chase", as the doctor put it, the medication. He also needs to be on Prednisolone but the prescription was for liquid and not pills. Tomorrow I'm going to call the vet to have him prescribe pills instead. The liquid tastes horrible!!! I was on it for my bronchitis, and it made me shiver because it was so disgusting! The prescribed dosage for Howie is 1CC. That's a lot for a cat! When Kitty was alive, she also had liquid Presnisolone, and after the first dose, I refused to give it to her again. She frothed at the mouth, retched, and wouldn't come near me for an entire day.

I'll let you know how Howie is doing. The vet said that we'll know if it's starting to work if his diarrhea becomes more solid! :yuck: :eeew: Believe me, right now we feel like evacuating the house when Howie uses the litter box!!! :p

growler~GateKeeper
June 18th, 2009, 11:51 PM
So glad to hear Howie is doing well after his first treatment :grouphug: :goodvibes: for quick results

chico2
June 19th, 2009, 03:27 PM
Oh,I am so glad Howie dealt with the chemo well,:fingerscrhe'll continue to do so.
Yes,I agree a pill would be so much easier on both you and Howie.
I always thought liquid would be easy to put down their throats,but that's not the case.
:goodvibes::goodvibes:Howie will continue to feel good:goodvibes:

smithduke
June 24th, 2009, 12:55 AM
Hi my friends,

I'm feeling a bit sad because Howie seems somewhat weaker. The vet said he should feel better after his treatment but I don't think he does. Part of his treatment includes the Prednisone, which I had mentioned before, and I requested the vet call into the pharmacy pills, vs. liquid. When I called the pharmacy over the weekend they had no record of the prescription and I had to wait until yesterday to talk to the vet. Although my vet authorized the prescription, he put it under Howie's name without an address so the pharmacy didn't know who it was for. Finally, Howie had his first dose! I was really concerned, and still am, about getting Howie to take his meds. He's so smart that he'll figure out my tricks. Even so, all went well for his first dose tonight. I put the pill inside a ball of cream cheese and then wrapped rare roast beef around the cream cheese. He ate it right down. So far so good. :fingerscr

I have a heavy heart right now because Howie just doesn't seem well, especially since his first treatment. Maybe cats do have a reaction to chemo but it's not overly noticeable to most people. We'll see how things go and maybe the Prednisone will have a major impact on how Howie feels. After all, why would it be part of the chemo regimen if it didn't have any effect?

I'll keep in touch. :cry:

growler~GateKeeper
June 24th, 2009, 01:10 AM
Howie gets treatment once every week for 4 weeks right?

It could just be the back side after the peak in treatment once the treatment is done again it will boost the amount of meds back to a more even level. The pred should also help with how he is feeling. :goodvibes:

:goodvibes: keep up the good thoughts :goodvibes: :fingerscr :goodvibes: for improvement for Howie tomorrow :goodvibes: :fingerscr

chico2
June 24th, 2009, 07:42 AM
Smitduke,sorry to hear that:sad:but like Growler says,maybe it's an in-between thing:confused:
:pray:He'll feel better soon:pray:

smithduke
June 24th, 2009, 05:23 PM
Thanks Growler and Chico. I hope it's just normal side-effects. He's eating well, so that's a good thing. :)

Growler, have you had a cat that has had chemo? If so, I'd love to hear your experience. Thanks.

growler~GateKeeper
June 24th, 2009, 08:35 PM
Smithduke I have not had a cat, or any animal for that matter, go through chemo

The effects of most medicines do slow down some over time and pick back up when boosted with another dose of treatment. For example if you think of having a cold & taking cold medication - the effects usually last between 4 -8 hours and in my experience around 1-2 hours before it's time for the next dose the medicine starts wearing off & is not as effective as it was during the first hour you took it. Make sense? It is possible the effects of the chemo are slowing down abit right before the next dose of treatment. Ask your vet what he/she thinks as they would have more experience w/chemo than I.

Wonderful to hear Howie is eating well :thumbs up

:goodvibes: for tomorrow's treatment :goodvibes:

smithduke
June 24th, 2009, 10:04 PM
Thanks Growler. I do understand. What bothers me is the vet said Howie should feel better after his treatment and I know he doesn't. His appointment was scheduled for tomorrow but the vet has an emergency and won't be available. There will be another vet covering for him but our vet requested that allow him to do the treatment. So, Howie will get his next Chemo on Friday. Hopefully it's not too late for my Howie! :pray:

I truly thank everyone for your support, especially Chico, Growler, and Hazelrunpack!!! :grouphug::grouphug:

I'll talk to you on Friday. :thumbs up

smithduke
July 4th, 2009, 09:48 PM
Sorry for not keeping you up-to-date. Busy, busy and my modem died as well as my laptop. I'm now on my old desktop and it's very slooow! My only child, Emily, went off to sleep-away-camp for the first time last week and I've been missing her terribly! We've never been more than a night apart. I was so, so worried she would miss us but she actually sent me an email telling me that she didn't have time to read my emails because they were too long and if I could tone it down she would appreciate it. So much for missing us! LOL.

Howie has gone through his second treatment of chemo and will get another on Monday. Yes, animals do tolerate chemo better than humans but they definitely have obvious side effects. He's gotten very weak and at times is very lethargic. After his second treatment he vomited all over and didn't feel well! The next day he ate breakfast but didn't eat dinner. The third day after his treatment he had no appetite and refused to eat. The vet called in an appetite stimulant, which helped him a great deal! Even though we only gave him one dose on Wednesday Howie's appetite has increased over the past three days and he's been ravenous today!! He actually ate 2-1/2 cans of food today.

The good news is that he gained a half pound since his first chemo. (he lost an entire pound since getting his stitches out and his first treatment) Howie's diarrhea is pretty much gone and except for his weakness and lethargy, he's doing well.

I just want others going through the same thing to first, know the chemo does have an effect on your cats stamina and appetite. Second, it's normal. Call your vet any time you have a question. Don't assume things are normal or not. Every cat is different. I'm convinced that Howie would be gone right now, if not for the chemo and prednisone.

catlover2
July 5th, 2009, 12:21 AM
Wondeful to hear Howie is responding well to treatment. Hope he's able to have many more years with you. All the best! Thanks for the update, and don't worry about your daughter at camp. I remember camp days as the best of my life.

growler~GateKeeper
July 5th, 2009, 12:40 AM
Happy to hear Howie is improving & eating well :thumbs up

:goodvibes: for continued improvement :goodvibes:

chico2
July 5th, 2009, 07:12 AM
smithduke,that's wonderful news and very encouraging.
There are very few treatments of any kind,without side-effects,but I am glad it was not a long-lasting effect on Howie.
It's exciting he put on some weight,1/2 lb is good on a little cat.

Your Emily not having time to read your emails can only be good news,but I remember my youngest in camp,I was worried sick..for no reason at all.
Also :rip:lap-top:laughing:

Love4himies
July 5th, 2009, 07:20 AM
That is great news that Howie has gained a pound and is doing well with the chemo :thumbs up.

:laughing:When my daughter went off to camp it was harder on me than her :laughing: :laughing:

hazelrunpack
July 5th, 2009, 09:21 PM
Great update, smithduke! :grouphug: I'm so glad he's tolerating the chemo as well as he is and that he's got his appetite back! :highfive:

:goodvibes: for a complete remission! Howie, you keep up the good work! :cat:

Kids and camp. :laughing: Sounds like she's having a blast! :D How long will your daughter be at camp?

smithduke
July 6th, 2009, 09:49 PM
You guys are the greatest!!! I don't know what I do without you!!:grouphug::grouphug:

Chico, :rip: laptop!!:laughing::laughing:ROFL

Howie, although weak and frail looking has been consistently eating two cans a day. :thumbs up He's definitely gained even more and his little belly is big and round like a kitten. I thought his diarrhea was gone but my hubby, who cleans the boxes, said Howie still has it but it's not as much and it's less stinky!:eeew::yuck: Tomorrow we head off for the third treatment and only two more to go. It's very quick and easy. although my Howie boy doesn't think it is! My poor baby...:sad::pawprint: I know Howie would not be with us right now if not for his treatments. Intestinal cancer is very, very aggressive and rapid. I was shocked that he could lose one pound in a week!

catlover, I've never been to camp myself but I know Emily's having a blast! Now I wished I had gone.

For everyone else who's had a son or daughter go to camp, it truly is worse for us parents!!!

Emily will be coming home this Saturday...yay...I'm worried she's going to hate coming home but at least I'll rest easy that she's with us! :sleepy: :goodvibes:

I'll let you know tomorrow if Howie gained some weight.

PS I'm picking up my new Mac laptop tomorrow at Best Buy! My first one....so exciting!

growler~GateKeeper
July 6th, 2009, 10:30 PM
:thumbs up Howie's got a great appetite

:goodvibes: for Howie's treatment tomorrow :goodvibes:

hazelrunpack
July 6th, 2009, 10:49 PM
I'll second that :goodvibes: for tomorrow's treatment!

chico2
July 7th, 2009, 08:04 AM
:fingerscrfor Howie today:fingerscr
I agree,this is a great place to be,great people:thumbs up
I got help and understanding,when I posted my first post 20.000+ posts ago and it's obvious I stuck around:laughing:

smithduke
July 15th, 2009, 01:59 AM
Hi Everyone,

Sorry for my delay in responding. Howie had his third treatment. Again, he was ok for a few days and then started feeling crappy. Suddenly he hates the Wellness food and only wants to eat Fancy Feast. He's very picky for a cat who is so ill! Our feeling is, just give Howie what he wants at this stage. He's become so thin and even though he weighed the same at his last appointment, 7 lbs., he's become very frail and weak. On Thursday, Howie will have his last treatment (I thought it was five treatments but it's only four) and he'll have to stay at the vet for the entire day. He can come home later in the afternoon. I'm really afraid of how this last treatment will affect Howie because the chemo has really done a job on him already. Part of me thinks it's not the chemo but that Howie is beyond help and is dying. He's just not the same vivacious cat and doesn't really seem to take any pleasure in playing anymore. It kills me to see him like this, although he did try to eat a Q-tip this morning...:):sad: His appetite is still good so I guess that's a positive sign. No matter what, he's getting lots of love, kisses etc. I have noticed that he's very sensitive to touch. Maybe Howie's entire body hurts, for whatever reason, hopefully just the chemo and not worse.

I'm sorry that this message isn't more upbeat but I'm just not feeling it. Just wanted you to know what's going on.

:grouphug: :grouphug: to all!

growler~GateKeeper
July 15th, 2009, 02:10 AM
I would also say at this point feed Howie whatever he wants to eat, it won't do him any good if he won't eat it.

:goodvibes: for vast improvement after Thurs treatment :goodvibes:

:grouphug:

hazelrunpack
July 15th, 2009, 04:38 AM
The light at the end of the tunnel--just one more treatment and then he can recover! :grouphug:

:goodvibes: for a successful treatment and a quick upswing in Howie's health!

Love4himies
July 15th, 2009, 06:53 AM
I agree, feed him what he will eat. Chemo is extremely hard on the body, once Howie is done, he will recover. :grouphug:

chico2
July 15th, 2009, 07:50 AM
Smithduke,poor Howie and you,hopefully after all this is over,he'll feel a lot better:pray:

smithduke
July 16th, 2009, 11:44 PM
Hi Again.

My latest update on Howie. He had a major treatment today which involved an I.V. drip for a couple of hours.

My hubby picked him up and Howie was very wobbly and basically "out of it" from the sedative. We decided keeping him the carrier would be the best, since we didn't have any rooms where there wasn't furniture that he could try to jump on. After awhile we let him out and he, like a good boy, used the litter box for #1...I'm so juvenile...LOL!

Thinking all was well, Howie had a seizure. :sad::eek: It lasted for several minutes, although it seemed like it was forever! I called our vet and was referred to an emergency clinic. The vet on call said that most likely his compromised state and anesthesia, contributed to the seizure but he couldn't rule out that his cancer could also be the issue. The great news is that Howie hasn't has any problems since his first seizure. Of course we'll watch him all night. Right now he's laying in bed with my hubby, spooning! :sleepy::flirt:

Now for the best part of the night...Howie had a huge, five inch turd that only a mother could be proud of! :goodvibes::thumbs up

This is the first time since April that he's had that happen!

I couldn't wait to tell you and there's no where else I'd rather pour my heart out than here! :grouphug::grouphug::sleepy:

Sweet dreams to everyone!!! Thanks again for being my rocks!!!

growler~GateKeeper
July 17th, 2009, 12:13 AM
I'm so sorry about the seizure that must've been scary :grouphug: I'm so glad it was only once & :fingerscr it stays that way.

Good news on both accounts of the litterbox activities :thumbs up

:goodvibes: :fingerscr It's only smooth sailing from here :goodvibes:

:grouphug:

smithduke
July 17th, 2009, 12:34 AM
Thanks Growler, I hope you're right!

Depending on the cat, chemo can have a big impact on how they feel. I really want others to know what to expect what chemo could possibly be like, or at least what it's done to Howie. Everyone needs a gauge to go by so my goal here it to help anyone going through the same thing. It's not easy, for sure! Everything I've ever looked up on websites about cats and chemotherapy makes it sound like a walk in the park. It's not, but it doesn't mean it's not worth it. Only time will tell for my Howie boy, but I know for a fact, without chemo, he wouldn't be here right now! :pray::)

chico2
July 17th, 2009, 07:24 AM
Smithduke,thank you for giving us regular updates,there is nothing more exciting than nice firm poop:laughing:
Sorry about the seizure,must have been scary both for Howie and you:pray:it's just a one-time thing:fingerscr

You telling us,this tough little guy was"spooning" comfortably with hubby,brought me to tears,but I am a big wuzz:cat:
You know we are forever rooting for you and Howie to get through this:goodvibes::goodvibes:

smithduke
July 18th, 2009, 10:54 PM
Smithduke,thank you for giving us regular updates,there is nothing more exciting than nice firm poop:laughing:
Sorry about the seizure,must have been scary both for Howie and you:pray:it's just a one-time thing:fingerscr

You telling us,this tough little guy was"spooning" comfortably with hubby,brought me to tears,but I am a big wuzz:cat:
You know we are forever rooting for you and Howie to get through this:goodvibes::goodvibes:

Aww Chico, you make me cry!!! :cry: happy tears! :o

Growler, Loverforhimies, Hazelrunpack, catlover2, etc. I wish I could give you all a big hug in person! :grouphug::grouphug::grouphug::grouphug:

I composed a message to you all last night because I was so, so upset but thankfully my hubby made me realize things might not be as bad as I we originally thought, therefore I deleted it. I'm glad I did. Here's what happened....Yesterday Howie wasn't able to use his tongue. He couldn't lap up water, or lick himself. When he tried to drink, he would put his whole face into the water and sneezed. Being the smart boy that he is, Howie put his paws in the water, and patted his mouth instead! I gave him some cream cheese, his favorite, and instead of licking it, he just shoved his nose into it. He had a gob of cream cheese on his nose and couldn't lick it off. I was so upset, especially after he had his seizure. Now my mind went running. Tongue cancer, brain cancer, stroke...etc. My hubby suggested that possibly during the seizure that Howie may have bitten his tongue and it's very painful. I calmed down and waited to see what the next day would bring. Thankfully, happily, and whatever happy emotion I can express, Howie has been great today!!! He's drinking, eating huge amounts and still cranking out solid poops. I can see in his eyes how much better he feels and he actually played today! Our daughter likes to make these braided bracelets and Howie decided they were his toys today. Sigh....I feel so relieved that he's finally feeling better. I do find it strange that the other chemo treatments made him feel really horrible but this latest one didn't have such extreme side effects. Granted, it can take a few days for the negative side effects to occur.

I'm not saying that he's out of the woods but it was great to see my Howie acting like his old self! :pray::pray::pawprint::goodvibes:

hazelrunpack
July 18th, 2009, 11:02 PM
It's been a scary few days for you all! :eek: Howie is such a trooper! How wonderful that he's having such a great day after such a worrisome time! :grouphug:

:goodvibes: for continued improvement! Must've been a wonderful feeling watching him playing with the bracelets.

growler~GateKeeper
July 18th, 2009, 11:08 PM
The seizure might've caused a slight temporary muscle paralysis of either the tongue or the esophagus :shrug:

I'm very glad to hear Howie is feeling much better today & searching out new toys to play with :thumbs up

More :goodvibes: :goodvibes: for more improvement :grouphug:

sugarcatmom
July 18th, 2009, 11:24 PM
http://www.mysmiley.net/imgs/smile/happy/happy0064.gif (http://www.mysmiley.net) Go Howie!! http://www.mysmiley.net/imgs/smile/party/party0053.gif (http://www.mysmiley.net/free-angel-smileys.php)
Yippee for good days! May there be many more....

smithduke
July 19th, 2009, 12:40 AM
sugarcatmom, thank you, as well as everyone else. I didn't mean to leave you out! Thank you to everyone!!! My Googie Boy, as I call him, is doing great tonight as well! Amazing. Even if the chemo gives him a few more months, it's worth it!

By the way, our vet, whom we've been going to for 21 years, his first year as a vet, has only charged us a 1/4 of what we were told. I wouldn't go to anyone else!!

Forgive me for not being that coherent. I'm so tired and stayed up all night last night. Right now it's 1:40 AM and I'm still here. Oh well...

catlover2
July 20th, 2009, 10:54 PM
Wow! just read some of the past posts. Fantastic how Howie has responded to chemo....Hope he keeps it up and has some more good years left for both of you to enjoy each other. :fingerscr You're an :angel: and so is your vet!

hazelrunpack
July 20th, 2009, 11:09 PM
:goodvibes: for a long remission, smithduke! You and Howie are certainly overdue for some carefree, happy days! :thumbs up

smithduke
July 20th, 2009, 11:57 PM
You make me feel great! Thanks!

Howie seems so happy and healthy after a treatment but several days later he becomes weak and tired. It's a big high and then a big low! We're getting used to the pattern. Even so, I feel in my heart, that the chemo isn't working. He's so, so skinny and his diarrhea has come back..full force. I hope I"m wrong!!!

No matter what, we'll keep doing what's best for Howie.

If you only knew him, you'd love him too! He's just the sweetest cat and is so funny and happy regardless of his illness!

He has an appointment on Thursday, again, so I'll give you an update when we get home.

:grouphug::grouphug: to you all! :fingerscr:goodvibes:

growler~GateKeeper
July 20th, 2009, 11:58 PM
More :goodvibes: :goodvibes: to carry Howie through till Thurs :goodvibes: :goodvibes:

smithduke
July 21st, 2009, 12:21 AM
:grouphug::thankyou:

Love4himies
July 21st, 2009, 07:50 AM
Oh I am so happy :thumbs up :highfive: :grouphug:. Nice big solid poops generally means the intestines are not constricted.

:grouphug::grouphug: for Howie.

chico2
July 21st, 2009, 09:19 AM
Happiness is solid poop:thumbs up
I certainly know,since my Rocky has had runny poop for a long while,it's now semi-hard:thumbs up

hazelrunpack
July 21st, 2009, 10:24 AM
:grouphug: Think positive, smithduke!! Chemo is hard on the body--Howie just needs a little time to heal.

:goodvibes: for more good days than bad! I hope the vet visit on Thursday goes well. We'll be thinking of the two of you!

smithduke
July 28th, 2009, 09:29 AM
Hi All,

Howie is done with his IV chemo but because he still has the same symptoms, the vet has put him on Leukeran, a chemo treatment in pill form. His last visit to the vet showed he lost a very slight amount of weight, despite eating two to three cans of cat food a day. The good news is that his blood levels were normal compared to his previous visit and his intestines are not as hard, when palpated, as before. Howie is still very weak but I've noticed since the chemo has stopped, he's getting a teeny bit stronger.

I wish I had better news to tell you. :sad: Whatever happens, Howie knows he's loved and he's in his glory because he gets to eat whenever he wants!! :lovestruck: :thumbs up:cat:

:grouphug::grouphug: to all!!!

growler~GateKeeper
July 28th, 2009, 10:18 PM
It's great news about the blood tests & the abdominal palpitation :thumbs up

:goodvibes: the Leukeran kicks what's left & Howie's back to feeling more like himself soon :goodvibes:

:grouphug: for you & Howie

hazelrunpack
July 28th, 2009, 11:51 PM
That is good news about the blood work, smithduke! I hope the results signal a general improvement in Howie's health! :goodvibes:

Hang in there! Both of you! :grouphug:

chico2
July 29th, 2009, 07:07 AM
Smithduke,hopefully Howie will regain more of his strenght as the days go by,but like you say,he knows he's loved and gets to eat as much as he wants,what else does a kitty need:lovestruck:
We all wish he could have been cured,but whether he lives another 6 months or 10 yrs,he's a very lucky kitty to have you in his life.:grouphug:

smithduke
August 8th, 2009, 11:27 PM
Hi. Sorry for being so out of touch!

Howie's not doing well and hasn't responded to his treatments.

Tonight was horrible and very upsetting for all of us! Howie had "projectile" diarrhea all over our upstairs hallway. I'm balling my eyes out as I'm writing this!! My poor boy is dying and my hubby is upstairs trying to clean things up! When I offered my help, my hubby just yelled at me.

I'm devastated that we have to take him in soon to end his suffering! Yet, he's looking at me right now, wondering why I'm so upset! Howie is weak but otherwise he's eating well and is very, very affectionate. Even so, i know what we need to do. This really kills me!!!

Thank you all for guiding me through this! I wish the outcome was better!!!!!! I hate 2009 right now!!!

xxxooo:grouphug: to you all!

hazelrunpack
August 8th, 2009, 11:42 PM
I'm so sorry things are going badly, smithduke! :grouphug: Stay strong for Howie, though--time enough to grieve when he's gone and right now he needs you to stay strong.

You're all in my thoughts and prayers :grouphug:

growler~GateKeeper
August 8th, 2009, 11:45 PM
smithduke I am so sorry Howie has taken a down turn :sad: :2huggers:

You have been such a wonderful mum to Howie ensuring he gets the best treatment, know that when you let him go it will be the best decision for him and Howie will not be alone he has friends waiting to greet him on the otherside :grouphug:

my thoughts are with you :grouphug:

chico2
August 9th, 2009, 07:37 AM
Smithduke,I too am in tears writing this:sad:I was soo hoping little Howie would recover.
Their little bodies can only take so much and both you and Howie have put up a valiant fight,cancer is an ugly,nasty disease.
I know you will do what's right for Howie,it's never,ever easy,but we'll be here for you,whatever the outcome:grouphug:

catlover2
August 10th, 2009, 11:33 PM
So very sorry to hear of the latest turn of events. Howie knows he is much loved, and I'm sure you'll know when it is "time" when Howie is no longer enjoying his quality of life. :cry: It's never ever easy....warm thoughts coming your way in your decision :goodvibes:

Love4himies
August 11th, 2009, 07:10 AM
Awwww, poor Howie, could this just be a blip in his healing from chemo? :pray:

Sending some :goodvibes::goodvibes::goodvibes: your way and a :grouphug:.

smithduke
August 25th, 2009, 10:53 PM
Hi My Friends,

Again, sorry for my lack of communication.

We're on vacation right now in Myrtle Beach and my sister is taking care of the cats.

She called us tonight and said Howie has taken a turn for the worse. He eats and then has diarrhea almost immediately. At the same time he's meowing loudly. Sadly, we've made the decision to let our boy go, to ease his pain. My sister will be taking him to the vet tomorrow. I just wish we were there to say goodbye our wonderful friend and companion. He is a great cat and we'll all miss him dearly.:cry::angel2:

You've all helped me through the past four months and I just want to say how much I appreciate it! It's been a long road and I don't know what I'd have done without your support! I feel badly that I haven't contributed to helping others on this site recently, but losing three cats within four months has been difficult. Even though they were in their 20's and Howie almost 15, doesn't make it any easier.

On a bit of a bright note, we've noticed a beautiful grey and white cat in our yard. My hubby, the softy, has been feeding him and giving him water for about a month now. Each day he gets closer and closer. We gave my sister instructions to be sure to feed this kitty while we're away. I have a feeling we're going to getting a new addition to our cat family. We've check around and no one is claiming him. When a door closes a window opens. Maybe this was meant to be.

Again, thank you again and when I start to heal a bit more, I'll be back here trying to help out. :grouphug::grouphug:

growler~GateKeeper
August 26th, 2009, 12:01 AM
I'm so sorry smithduke :sad: :2huggers:

Love4himies
August 26th, 2009, 07:11 AM
I am so sorry to hear that. I was really hoping his cancer would go into remission :sad:

:grouphug: to you.

chico2
August 26th, 2009, 07:42 AM
Smithduke,you certainly fought for Howie and loved him,some things are just beyond our control,but little Howie will have peace now,no more pain.

When you come home,another little needy kitty will be waiting,to ease your pain of losing Howie,
I am certain Howie will approve.
:rip:little Howie:angel2:

smithduke
August 26th, 2009, 09:31 AM
Thanks,

I know it's for the best. He certainly was a wonderful cat! :lovestruck::lovestruck::cat::rip:

Thanks for your condolences! :grouphug::grouphug:

hazelrunpack
August 26th, 2009, 10:13 AM
I'm so sorry, smithduke :sad: :grouphug:

You fought so hard for him. He was a very lucky boy to have such a strong advocate.

:candle: Howie

Keep us updated on the little newbie, too. Howie would be pleased that you're going to make room for this little one in need. :grouphug:

growler~GateKeeper
August 26th, 2009, 07:26 PM
:rip: sweet :angel2: Howie :candle: He is playing at the Rainbow Bridge (http://www.indigo.org/rainbowbridge_ver2.html) with those who've gone before :candle:

:grouphug: