Like a walk through the country side living on a small farm is full of daily surprises, sometimes wonderful and amazing, and other times puzzling and sad. I hope you will walk with me as I live out my dream of living on this tiny farm. You will come to know the dogs, cats, Shetland sheep and chickens that make up this farm and what goes into keeping them happy and healthy. Come and join the journey with me.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Bad Breath

A couple of weeks ago, I took Meshach back to the vet. I was confused and unhappy with how he was progressing on the gingivitis front. He was doing much better, but there was still an odor and an on and off again inflammation around the gum line. Mostly I just needed clarification. I made a point not to make an appointment for late in the evening, as the vet seemed very tired to me the last time I was in, and didn't volunteer much information.

Of course Meshach cried and carried on the whole way over there, but he really did pretty good. We had to wait quite a bit as they were very busy. This time I was armed with more questions and wanted to know what the prognosis was. I was very surprised to find out that in all likelihood Meshach will have to stay on prednisone 'forever'. This really did come as a shock. We switched from liquid to pills, as Mesh has been throwing a wall eyed fit (even wrapped in a towel) with the liquid. The pills have been so easy and fortunately prednisone is one of the cheaper medications out there. He was given another shot of antibiotic, but the report was very good, as he is so much better than before. No ulcerations and the inflammation is not nearly as significant. I asked about side effects and while there could be some, cats seem to handle the prednisone better than some animal species. It could cause transitional diabetes in the short term and a whole host of other things long term, but I don't see many options here. I watch him like a hawk, but he seems to be doing very well so far. He has gained some weight back--probably a combination of the prednisone and also being able to eat without the pain he was encountering before. He is more alert and plays his sweet little kitty games almost like he used to. Most of the time finds him under the covers, but I have noticed he is much more alert than before. The prednisone also seems to help a little with the twitching fits. He still has them, but not nearly as often or as severe.

The little guy will be 12 this year, although that doesn't seem possible. My heart breaks to think of losing him, so I always hope that I'm doing the right thing on treatments like this. Each additional day is a blessing, so focusing on that helps.
Meshach, worn out and ticked off about the whole vet trip.


Berte said...

Glad to hear your sweet little Meshach is feeling better. We sure don't want our furry children to hurt. Sounds like he's got a very good mama.

Susan M. Bell said...

Four of my fur babies will be 10 this September, and I think a lot about the coming years and the issues that may start coming our way. You're taking good care of your boy, and he knows it. As much as he hates the trips to the vet, and mine do as well, he knows he feels better afterwords.

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

Our beloved animals have too-short lives, any way you cut it. Looking back, we know that prednisone is what kept Rosie going for so long before we discovered her great big tumor, and extra prednisone gave her two good final days before we put her down. Great, now I'm crying over her again....

Janna's Page said...

I know what you mean.. Simba will be 13 this year!

He has been having a lot of nasal/respitory issues, and he responds to antibiotics but as soon as you take him off them it starts again.. sigh.. But he is still very playful and his usual self.

But the thought of losing him is just horrible for me. He is one of my "kids".

Tammy said...

Berte, I just get so attached to them, and since they are 'part of the family' I want to do the best I can. Susan, it is hard when they get older. I think with cats it's not as noticeable as they tend to lay around much of the time anyway. Then too, cats sometimes live to be quite old. Your little herd of cats are just getting started ;-) Michelle, thanks for the positive on the predisone. I know it's just one of those things we have to do sometimes. I know you still hurt so much over Rosie, and believe I understand. She was a 'heart dog'. Janna, Simba is a lovely boy. I hope that you can control his sinus issues eventually. Sometimes it's just hard to figure out what is going on.

Kathy said...

Tammy, don't worry. You are giving Mesach a wonderful life inspite of the trips to the vet. We do what we can for our friends.
We have our cat Max on prednisone too. He's ancient, but really thin. Two vets thought it was a malabsorption disease as his bloodwork is always "normal". We think he's between 16 and 20 years old now as he was probably around 10 when we took him in.
Mesach is making progress and that's the most important thing. :) Good work, Tammy. You know Mesach would hug you if he weren't abiding by Cat Law and snubbing you as is station in paragrah 1, SubSection 395 of the Housecat's By-Laws. :)