First off sorry for the long delay for an update. In a few words, it has been a day today. I am just going to ramble, basically because I am dog-dead tired and I just got home from work. It is 1:30 a.m.
I was the first one in the vet’s office this morning. I was in there with him and Shell for over two hours.
Concerning Shell, after he carefully and gently examined her, he gave me two options; euthanize her immediately or bite the bullet and pay for some expensive treatments and see if in two weeks we might overcome some hurdles.
I opted for the latter based on several things. Shell has a fighting spirit. I see that in her. I suspect she has never had a chance to have a life (something the vet also agrees with) I think she deserves a chance and she is eating (not drinking) but eating, she is pooping and peeing and she is active.
Ok here we go. I have dealt with rodent ulcers before, but honestly, they were maybe the size of a canker sore. Not so for Shell, she doesn’t have just a few rodent ulcers, she has SEVEN. One is right at the tip of her lip coming out from under the gum causing that funny swelling she has when you look at her closely.
Before I say anything else, just to get you into the picture, when my vet looked into her mouth, he was speechless. After he saw the extent of the damage all he could say was “Whoa, that was a mess!” And that was the first thing he examined on her! He let me look (I had been holding Shell still for him) I needn’t have bothered, she wasn’t going anywhere. She has one ulcer under her tongue that is so large it actually overlaps her remaining teeth and gums and is forcing her tongue out of her mouth! The worst part about this ulcer is because of the sticky drooly drainage crap, the top of the ulcer is glued to the underside of her tongue. Poor girl.
She has another large ulcer on the left side of her mouth and it looks like someone blew a balloon up and planted it in her mouth! Another concern is an ulcer setting in the back of her throat that has caused constriction of the thoat opening which is why I keep hearing her hard swallowing when she eats.
She has two teeth left both canines but they are so messed up because of malnutrition, poor care, neglect whatever, that you can almost see through the teeth! They will have to come out eventually. She has stomatitis, and that is just what is going on in her mouth!
My vet told me he has never seen such an epidemic of large rodent ulcers in his life, and neither have I.
Onward and upward…or maybe it’s downward. It is his professional opinion that she hasn’t been attacked by a cat, or a dog or a coyote or even a human at least not with the wounds she has on her presently. He said that due to poor, poor nutrition, her skin is as thin as onionskin and if she, for example, scratches a flea, she rips a hole in her side! I cried so hard at times as he was talking to her and about her. If she rubs up against a rough object like a tree, she tears her skin. She has twelve wounds on her body. Two on her back leg that look like tears, seven puncture wounds about the size of an icepick. Two large gashes on her front shoulders and two holes one in her belly and one, sadly right under her anus.
Ok we aren’t done yet. She has feline herpesvirus, she has a really bad URI, she is peeing blood not a lot but it’s visible and it is pink not red thank God. He thinks it is parasites, or her system is shutting down. She has earmites, fleas but he said she isn’t strong enough to treat yet for these parasites.
Because of the ulcers in her tongue, she is unable to clean herself and so she had a mess under her tail as I was gently washing her down she pooped and it looked like a poop worm. went to check, yep it was a hookworm. Hence her anemia.
The good news is she tested negative for FIV and FeLV which was the first thing we did before anything else.
He gave her two shots; depo medrol and covina. he gave me a bottle of Hibiclens ( think it is called) to cleanse her wounds. He told me to give her a buffet to eat from, dry food, wet food, baby food, puree, and some safe human food and let her tell me which she wanted to eat. Her preference appears to be wet food. He gave me some AD and at the end of the visit I was out several hundred dollars. But she is alive, she is in the bedroom isolated from everyone in her cage on a cat heating pad with a vaporizer going nearby, my CD from www.harpofhope.com to help de-stress her and a snuggle kitty to cuddle up with.
Through it all, she just laid there and wanted to be petted and loved. I don’t know if it is just because she is so worn out, or if she somehow understands that for probably the first time in her life, someone actually gives a damn about her.
I asked about blood work, but he wants to hold off, says the mess in her mouth could wreck havoc with the values (or something like that) He wants to give her two weeks to see if the mouth calms down- oh and she is about 7 or 8 years old, not a young cat by any measure.
When i came from work earlier, I went to sit with her and watch her. She came out of her carrier and headbumped my arm- crawled into my lap and fell asleep. It was pure bliss……