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Old December 13th, 2011, 07:37 PM
sojuorn sojuorn is offline
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worst day ever - cat kidney failure questions- Growler still around?

My cat is a male and is 14yrs old. For the past two months I noticed that he seemed to be walking with a slight limp in his rear legs. Also he quit eating hard food. I had been buying him soft food which he loved at first, but for about a week he hasn't been eating that well.

I took him to the vet today thinking he had a mouth problem and perhaps some arthritis in his hips. The vet told me that his kidneys felt lumpy and ran some tests. He then came back and told me that he is suffering from kidney failure. I was/am devistated. He showed me all his labs, none of which I can remember now. He also showed me the x-ray and pointed out some dots which he said were kidney stones. He also said he was anemic.

He told me my choices were to do nothing or consider putting him down, or to do IV fluids for three days in hopes of getting his lab numbers back where they should be. Kobe (cat) would go in at 8:00 am and I could pick him up at 5:00pm each day for 3 days. He said if it was his cat he would try this approach. However, when I asked him the best case scenerio he said I am looking at adding months/weeks to his life, not years.

Of course I opted to try the IV treatments. I consider Kobe family.

I am hoping someone can tell me anything. What questions should I ask? what do I need to know? Is it really this hopeless? I was in shock when he was talking to me so I didn't ask much today. I don't know if there are specific stages of kidney failure, or what kidney stone mean in this regard.

If anyone can help, I would appreciate any guidance. I see Growler's name attached to several of these posts, which is why I threw that name in my title. But I would take any advice from anyone.

Is 3-day IV treatment common? Is it helpful? What can I expect? What should I do?

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Old December 13th, 2011, 07:39 PM
sojuorn sojuorn is offline
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also, are there different levels of CRF? how do I know where my cat is? I see post that talk about managing it for years, but I don't want to get my hopes up. Kobe has been very healthy until this. I just cannot believe it.
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Old December 13th, 2011, 08:49 PM
sugarcatmom's Avatar
sugarcatmom sugarcatmom is offline
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Originally Posted by sojuorn View Post
What questions should I ask? what do I need to know? Is it really this hopeless?
Can you get a copy of the lab results, including the urine specific gravity? That can help determine how advanced the renal insufficiency is, as well as give you some ideas of where to go from here. For instance, potassium supplementation, phosphorus binders, calcitriol, probiotics, B vitamins, subQ fluids at home, slippery elm bark, etc, are various "tools" in the CRF arsenal that can help keep this disease at bay. A couple of really good sites to read are here:


Originally Posted by sojuorn View Post
Is 3-day IV treatment common? Is it helpful?
Yes and yes. IV fluids can really help "flush" the build-up of toxins out and help the cat to feel better, which will also hopefully perk up the kitty's appetite.

Originally Posted by sojuorn View Post
also, are there different levels of CRF? how do I know where my cat is?
There are different "stages" based on the lab results. Here is a link explaining them, although the values may be different depending on where you live: http://www.felinecrf.org/how_bad_is_...ow_bad_numbers

I wouldn't focus solely on the numbers though. There are many factors to this disease and it's important to view the cat as a whole, which includes how they're feeling and behaving and their quality of life. I'm sorry you and your cat are going through this! Cats can and do live quite a while with CRF.
"To close your eyes will not ease another's pain." ~ Chinese Proverb

“We must not refuse to see with our eyes what they must endure with their bodies.” ~ Gretchen Wyler
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Old December 13th, 2011, 11:54 PM
kwolf68 kwolf68 is offline
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Just passing along my good thoughts as I read your story and feel your distress.
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Old December 14th, 2011, 02:03 AM
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growler~GateKeeper growler~GateKeeper is offline
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Hi sojuorn welcome to the forum, sorry about the circumstances though

You've gotten some great advice already Definately a good place to start is getting a copy of all the lab results this makes it easier for you to refer back to them later if you have more questions.

There's lots of specific information here on anaemia http://www.felinecrf.org/anaemia.htm

Some info on kidney stones http://www.cat-health-guide.org/felinekidneystones.html

What brand/flavour food is Kobe currently eating?

What about the daily attitude/activity of your cat? Other than the limp and not eating krunchies, how is Kobe feeling? Affection level the same? Any unusual hiding? Peeing/drinking more than normal? Using the litterbox properly? Does he seem happy/normal or grouchy? Playing/activity level normal? Sleeping more or the same as usual? Pain/discomfort when picked up?
Avoid biting when a simple growl will do

The Spirit Lives As Long As Someone Who Lives Remembers You - Navaho Saying

Vindication ~ For all those pets who became sick or lost their lives from tainted pet food
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Old December 14th, 2011, 06:47 AM
sojuorn sojuorn is offline
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Thank you all for the replies. I appreciate it very very much.

I am going to drop him off this morning for the first of the 3 IV treatments. I will ask for a copy of the lab results then and post what I find. I don't know that the "bad" numbers were very high..

Kobe has not been his "normal" playful self for a few months now, but I had chalked that up to my recent move and the fact that he is getting older. He still runs to meet me every day I come home. Still jumps on counters and on tables (even if he isn't supposed to). He is skinner than ever, but my parents cat got skinner as she aged so I thought it was normal. He still uses the litter box. I had been feeding him science diet (elder cat formula whatever that is called) prior to him quitting eating that. Since then I had been feeding him a variety of soft food from friskies brand to science diet. Whatever he seemed to like best. His affection level is the same, but he much more subdued than normal. Again, i thought he was just getting older and calmer. I don't notice any seeming pain when he is picked up. Never noticed until really watching him last night, but he did seem to drink more at night.

I will say that looking back on it I feel I should have acted quicker. I have noticed what I thought was incrased urine in the litter box some time ago, but I didn't think much of it. I thought the non-eating was due to a toothache or moodyness (he did this before a few years back when he was sick of a certian brand). I thought the limp was just old joints. I feel like I have let him down by not acting sooner. His ailments all seem very obvious to me now in hindsight.

Dropping him off at the vet today is going to be difficult. I don't like the choice that is not inevitably in front of me.
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Old December 14th, 2011, 08:22 AM
sojuorn sojuorn is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2011
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I dropped him off and picked up his labs and now that I think I understand the numbers I feel absolutly sick to my stomach.

BUN - 127 normal - 16-36
CREA - 10.4 normal - .8-2.4
PHOS -15.4 normal - 3.1-7.5
GLOB - 5.2 normal - 2.8-5.1

After seeing the CREA level and reading that anything over 5 is stage 4 90% kidney loss I am feeling that there is no hope. Is the IV treatment even going to help now? Or am I just making him scared and suffereing?
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