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Another trip to the vet for Oksana

ancientgirl
August 1st, 2010, 04:42 PM
Saturday evening I noticed Oksana was using the litter excessively and not much was coming out. This afternoon I took her to the vet. She has cystitis...again. She has no bacteria in her urine, so the Idiopathic cystitis verdict is the same as before. The vet said it's likely we may have to keep her on Amitriptyline, which is for anxiety and stress, for life. She also suggested I keep her on the cosequin.

Right now, she's getting cystitis about every 2-3 months. The last time I took her in was May, and before that was January, and before that was November/December. The Amitriptyline is supposed to eventually cut down the instances of the recurring cystitis if not stop it all together. But again, she said this is something I will have to give her on an ongoing basis.

I feel so bad for my girl. The good thing is she's not acting any different than she usually does. I just want this to stop happening to her.:(

luckypenny
August 1st, 2010, 09:36 PM
AG, did your vet explain exactly how stress can indirectly cause cystitis?

Hoping Oksana gets better really soon. Gentle kisses for her and :grouphug: for you.

hazelrunpack
August 1st, 2010, 10:38 PM
Well that's no good!!! :( Poor Oksana!

I hope she improves quickly! :goodvibes: :grouphug:

growler~GateKeeper
August 1st, 2010, 11:50 PM
I don't remember if you have used the feliway plug-ins, if so did they help at all?

ancientgirl
August 2nd, 2010, 08:02 AM
AG, did your vet explain exactly how stress can indirectly cause cystitis?

Hoping Oksana gets better really soon. Gentle kisses for her and :grouphug: for you.

Yes, she said it works sort of like with humans. Idiopathic cystitis is called that because there is no bacterial signs. She doesn't have an infection, nor bacteria is showing in her urine, but she's got the symptoms. I've been reading about it online and every place I've gone says that stress is one of the biggest and a very common cause.

It's strange, because they still get the swelling in the bladder, the blood in the urine, everything the same, but there is nothing in the tests to indicate anything is abnormal.

Oksana should be in a one cat household. I'm certain if she was by herself she would not have these issues. But, that's not an option for now. She's not going anywhere and neither are the others. Ideally I'd love to be able to have a room designated just for her, but for now that's just not possible.

Growler, I do have the diffusers, but they didn't work for us. I may have to give it another shot. At this point, I'll try anything. I'm terrified that if she keeps having these issues, then she will develop serious kidney issues, and I don't want that.

Love4himies
August 2nd, 2010, 08:03 AM
Awwww, poor Oksana :grouphug::grouphug:. :goodvibes::goodvibes:

Have you read up on amitriptyline? I know when I was talking to my vet about it he didn't like the idea of having a cat on it for long term.

http://www.vetinfo.com/side-effects-amitriptyline-cats.html

krdahmer
August 2nd, 2010, 08:20 AM
AG, that is exactly what they think Smoke is getting....and the same frequency too, seems like every 3 months or so....and completely stress related. I did notice a big improvement when we had the feliways plugged in, but with no credit cards right now I have to see if I can find them cheaper across the border, my last one died a few weeks back. I try also to give her alone time with me, in the afternoon when the other guys are sleeping, take her in the bedroom and lock the others out for a bit etc. Hope Oksana is feeling better soon! :goodvibes:

ancientgirl
August 2nd, 2010, 08:38 AM
Awwww, poor Oksana :grouphug::grouphug:. :goodvibes::goodvibes:

Have you read up on amitriptyline? I know when I was talking to my vet about it he didn't like the idea of having a cat on it for long term.

http://www.vetinfo.com/side-effects-amitriptyline-cats.html

Yeah, I read about the side-effects yesterday. I'm going to put a call in to the vet this morning and ask if I can get her on prozac instead. It seems the side-effects on the prozac aren't as bad. I have two syringes with the amitriptyline at home, so I'm going to get her started on that for now.


AG, that is exactly what they think Smoke is getting....and the same frequency too, seems like every 3 months or so....and completely stress related. I did notice a big improvement when we had the feliways plugged in, but with no credit cards right now I have to see if I can find them cheaper across the border, my last one died a few weeks back. I try also to give her alone time with me, in the afternoon when the other guys are sleeping, take her in the bedroom and lock the others out for a bit etc. Hope Oksana is feeling better soon! :goodvibes:

How long where you using the feliway?

Getting alone time with her is hard, with no actual bedroom door to shut. But whenever she comes to sit next to me or she jumps on the bed, I immediately give her my attention. I'm hoping she feels better quickly.

Winston
August 2nd, 2010, 09:50 AM
AG I am so sorry Oksana isnt feeling well...Tabitha and Bomber and alot of cats seem to have the ideopathic cystitus these days! anyway I also have a friend who had his overweight female kitty with the same problem. He used the Amytryptaline as well and it did not really work. What worked for him was he went to a very short sided litter box and londer and it was easier for her to get in and out of and it helped. She still has had a couple of episodes but not to the frequency your poor girl is having.

I hope she is feeling better soon. Just wanted to send you some :grouphug::grouphug::grouphug:

Cindy

ancientgirl
August 2nd, 2010, 10:27 AM
Thanks Winston. The litterboxes I have for them has a low entry. :shrug: She's able to walk in and out without having to jump or anything. I just wish I could talk to her and ask her what I can do to help her.:(

ancientgirl
August 2nd, 2010, 06:57 PM
I asked the vet that the advantages were with having Oksana on the amitriptyline as opposed to the prozac. She said according to the research and her experience with it, the amitriptyline helps heal the bladder and helps eventually prevent the cystitis coming back. The prozac doesn't do that. She said if Oksana did have any side-effects, they should go away after about 2 weeks. Her cat has been on this for 2 years and she said she has only had 1 flare up in that time.

To ease my worry, I think I'm going to take my girl in to get a check up next month. Just to make sure everything is as it should be. I'm going to try this, if I see she has another flare up in 2-3 months, like she has been then I'm going to try something else. I won't keep her on this if it doesn't help.

hazelrunpack
August 2nd, 2010, 08:31 PM
Does she seem to be feeling any better today, AG? :goodvibes:

growler~GateKeeper
August 3rd, 2010, 12:39 AM
Right now, she's getting cystitis about every 2-3 months. The last time I took her in was May, and before that was January, and before that was November/December.

Anything different in the routine your home that is happening in those months - different litter/food/laundry detergent/longer working hours/money tight/more visitors? Are you more stressed during those times?

Love4himies
August 3rd, 2010, 07:16 AM
I asked the vet that the advantages were with having Oksana on the amitriptyline as opposed to the prozac. She said according to the research and her experience with it, the amitriptyline helps heal the bladder and helps eventually prevent the cystitis coming back. The prozac doesn't do that. She said if Oksana did have any side-effects, they should go away after about 2 weeks. Her cat has been on this for 2 years and she said she has only had 1 flare up in that time.

To ease my worry, I think I'm going to take my girl in to get a check up next month. Just to make sure everything is as it should be. I'm going to try this, if I see she has another flare up in 2-3 months, like she has been then I'm going to try something else. I won't keep her on this if it doesn't help.

Hmmmmm, it is my understanding that amitriptyline is synthesized in the liver and can cause liver damage. That side effect does not go away, it just keeps affecting the liver.

It made Sweet Pea quite aggressive after a couple of weeks. While she was on it she had to go in for monthly blood work to watch her liver functions. After a couple of months I took her off.

breeze
August 3rd, 2010, 07:21 AM
:grouphug::goodvibes::goodvibes::goodvibes:

hope she feels better soon

ancientgirl
August 3rd, 2010, 07:21 AM
Does she seem to be feeling any better today, AG? :goodvibes:

She seemed better this morning. Last night and this morning she wasn't going to the litter as much and she ate a little more at breakfast, so I think she's feeling better.

Anything different in the routine your home that is happening in those months - different litter/food/laundry detergent/longer working hours/money tight/more visitors? Are you more stressed during those times?

Nothing had changed. Litter is the same, so is the food and detergent. My working hours have actually shortened, and well money is always tight.:rolleyes:

The only change has been my dad doesn't stop over on Saturdays anymore, since he finally fully retired and isn't stopping by on his way to work. So, I've been visiting him at his house on Saturday mornings.

I was remembering last night when I first saw her. Thinking back on it, there was a reason why she was all huddled up in the corner of her cage. I think she's just always preferred to be by herself. :shrug: That's the only thing I can think of. With the growing kitty family, she likely just feels stressed because she feels she's always got to avoid the others.

I'm really hoping this medication helps her. The vet told me she's really happy with how well her cat is doing on it, so I'm :pray: it works well for Oksana.

ancientgirl
August 3rd, 2010, 07:36 AM
Hmmmmm, it is my understanding that amitriptyline is synthesized in the liver and can cause liver damage. That side effect does not go away, it just keeps affecting the liver.

It made Sweet Pea quite aggressive after a couple of weeks. While she was on it she had to go in for monthly blood work to watch her liver functions. After a couple of months I took her off.

I'll have to ask her about that. I have to take Czari in next week for a follow-up appointment. I'll ask the vet that sees her about the liver issue. In the meantime I think I'll research this more so I can have something to show. I'm also thinking of taking her to see this Holistic vet near where I live. He might be able to give us another alternative.

Thanks L4H.

Love4himies
August 3rd, 2010, 07:46 AM
I'll have to ask her about that. I have to take Czari in next week for a follow-up appointment. I'll ask the vet that sees her about the liver issue. In the meantime I think I'll research this more so I can have something to show. I'm also thinking of taking her to see this Holistic vet near where I live. He might be able to give us another alternative.

Thanks L4H.

I know I am very pessimistic about meds mainly due to the fact that my sister died from a prescription med while she was in the care of a doctor. I have learnt that no med is 100% safe and that they should not be popped like candy, and not to take the word of a doctor, but to do your own research.

Going to a holistic vet may give you some really good alternatives :thumbs up

I know you don't have a bedroom to lock her up in, what about your bathroom? Perhaps she could be locked in their during the day to give her some peace :shrug:. I do know when Puddles wants to be left alone, she runs to the bedroom and wants the door to be closed, then she curls up and goes to sleep. I always feel bad, but she does meow when she wants out. She also prefers to eat in the bedroom with the door closed.

ancientgirl
August 3rd, 2010, 08:01 AM
Going to a holistic vet may give you some really good alternatives :thumbs up

I know you don't have a bedroom to lock her up in, what about your bathroom? Perhaps she could be locked in their during the day to give her some peace :shrug:. I do know when Puddles wants to be left alone, she runs to the bedroom and wants the door to be closed, then she curls up and goes to sleep. I always feel bad, but she does meow when she wants out. She also prefers to eat in the bedroom with the door closed.

I'm going to see if I can get her to the holistic vet. I'm going to look for the number and give them a call. I do hate the thought of having her on something for an extended period. Ideally if I have to do that with her, I would prefer to go the natural route.

I tried putting her in the upstairs bathroom for about a week and she was miserable. One of her favorite things to do is look out the window and she couldn't do that in the bathroom. I hate to take away something I know she loves. I could put her in the bedroom, but the only way I could do it is to buy two large tri-fold screens and block the stairs and a small open ledge. That would actually be ideal, but the screens are just too expensive for me to buy right now. Still, it's an idea. She'd have plenty of room in the bedroom, and she could see outside still and she'd be high up.

Love4himies
August 3rd, 2010, 08:09 AM
I tried putting her in the upstairs bathroom for about a week and she was miserable. One of her favorite things to do is look out the window and she couldn't do that in the bathroom. I hate to take away something I know she loves.
No, you couldn't, that would only make it worse :(

I could put her in the bedroom, but the only way I could do it is to buy two large tri-fold screens and block the stairs and a small open ledge. That would actually be ideal, but the screens are just too expensive for me to buy right now. Still, it's an idea. She'd have plenty of room in the bedroom, and she could see outside still and she'd be high up.

Giving her the peace along with a litter box may allow her to urinate more frequently. Kitties are such funny creatures, I wish they could talk. I think Puddles and Oksana have very similar personalities.

ancientgirl
August 3rd, 2010, 08:12 AM
Giving her the peace along with a litter box may allow her to urinate more frequently. Kitties are such funny creatures, I wish they could talk. I think Puddles and Oksana have very similar personalities.

It sounds like Puddles and Oksana are two peas in a pod.:rolleyes: I think if I could give Oksana a space of her own she wouldn't be having any issues, but sadly space is limited right now.:(

sugarcatmom
August 3rd, 2010, 01:24 PM
I think if I could give Oksana a space of her own she wouldn't be having any issues, but sadly space is limited right now.:(

What about more vertical space? Of course a tall cat condo is ideal, but if money is tight, maybe clearing off some areas on a bookshelf or putting in a couple of window hammocks around the apartment would be sufficient.

Not sure how feasible this is, but adding another litter box in a different area of your home might also be necessary. One reason that stress can be a factor with cystitis is that the kitty doesn't feel comfortable using the litter box and tries to hold it for longer than they should. This retention irritates the bladder lining. Putting a few more boxes in different spots makes a pee break more available to the cat.

Sorry that you're still dealing with this. Very frustrating, to be sure!

ancientgirl
August 3rd, 2010, 01:53 PM
What about more vertical space? Of course a tall cat condo is ideal, but if money is tight, maybe clearing off some areas on a bookshelf or putting in a couple of window hammocks around the apartment would be sufficient.

Not sure how feasible this is, but adding another litter box in a different area of your home might also be necessary. One reason that stress can be a factor with cystitis is that the kitty doesn't feel comfortable using the litter box and tries to hold it for longer than they should. This retention irritates the bladder lining. Putting a few more boxes in different spots makes a pee break more available to the cat.

Sorry that you're still dealing with this. Very frustrating, to be sure!

They have a high kitty condo, and another of her favorite spots is on top of the kitchen cabinets. She also likes hanging out on the top of the stairs.

Another litterbox may help. I've been thinking about it, but still not sure where to put it. I didn't want another one in the kitchen, but maybe I can use this as an excuse to get this one: Bionaire odor grabber (http://www.bionaire.com/PetProducts.aspx?version=bionaire) I can put this one in the closet upstairs. I always leave it open.

Love4himies
August 3rd, 2010, 02:01 PM
Holy smokes, did you see the price of that litter box :eek:.

Are the litter boxes away from where the gang normally hang out?

ancientgirl
August 3rd, 2010, 02:11 PM
Holy smokes, did you see the price of that litter box :eek:.

Are the litter boxes away from where the gang normally hang out?

It's actually cheaper than what I paid when I bought that litter maid a few years ago. Besides, I saw it on Overstock for $60. Of course it's sold out, so I'll wait until they get more.

I have two boxes under the stairs. They are separated by a little bookcase. I have another one in the upstairs bathroom. So, if I can get this one, I can put it in the closet. I don't think using the litterbox is a huge issue for her though. Vlad and Maks sleep in their living room, and if their routine is anything like it is on the weekends, she easily goes without either of them even noticing. Still, I'd like to get this box. I know I need another one.

growler~GateKeeper
August 4th, 2010, 01:25 AM
I was remembering last night when I first saw her. Thinking back on it, there was a reason why she was all huddled up in the corner of her cage. I think she's just always preferred to be by herself. :shrug: That's the only thing I can think of. With the growing kitty family, she likely just feels stressed because she feels she's always got to avoid the others.

Possible that it is not a 'series of events' that leads to each diagnosis, just the 'build-up time' if you will. Everyone has a different personality (outgoing vs introvert etc) & the same is true for our furries.

I am curious about the frequency/pattern of inflammation - have you considered a journal of sorts for Oksana? In addition to medical health issues, recording the emotional state: days/reasons she seems more stressed, or this particular day she played nice with Vlad, or this day she was more cuddly with me, this week she was standoffish with so & so etc..

I found that helped with Duffy as I could read back to say the previous month & see a pattern in her moods, eating habits or desire to go on the balcony, something I might've forgotten/missed day-to-day as it became routine.

Would also help if you do go see a holistic vet as they may ask some emotional state questions

ancientgirl
August 4th, 2010, 01:46 PM
Possible that it is not a 'series of events' that leads to each diagnosis, just the 'build-up time' if you will. Everyone has a different personality (outgoing vs introvert etc) & the same is true for our furries.

I am curious about the frequency/pattern of inflammation - have you considered a journal of sorts for Oksana? In addition to medical health issues, recording the emotional state: days/reasons she seems more stressed, or this particular day she played nice with Vlad, or this day she was more cuddly with me, this week she was standoffish with so & so etc..

I found that helped with Duffy as I could read back to say the previous month & see a pattern in her moods, eating habits or desire to go on the balcony, something I might've forgotten/missed day-to-day as it became routine.

Would also help if you do go see a holistic vet as they may ask some emotional state questions

A journal is certainly a good idea. The first round was in November, then again a month later at the end of December. She was fine until May of this year, and now July.

I have my vets office sending her records to the holistic vet I found. The office manager said once they get the records, the vet will have a look and see what they can do for her and then call me for a consultation.

I'm also looking around for some screen panels to see if I can use those to block the upstairs loft and give her some space on her own during the day while I'm at work.