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Harree’s Struggle

June 27, 2009

IMG_0096

Meet Harree. Not the greatest pic in the world, but its disappointingly the only one I have. So going to fix that! Damn, I need a new camera. Anywho, Harree is sick right now. 😦

I’m writing this blog for two purposes: 1) I’ve been posting updates on facebook, so for my friends who are more curious and looking to learn more about what’s going can come get more info here and 2) I have found very little information on his current medical condition online, so this is for anyone else who may have a kitty with a similar condition.

Harree is 5 years old. He is energetic, active, incredibly affectionate and playful. He adores water- esp. running water, loves getting into trouble, eats anything he can get his paws on, enjoys helping me do laundry (he loves baskets), can be so affectionate that it can get crazy annoying (but still adorable), is super strong, and loves sleeping between my feet. He’s a big cat, not fat,…very long and lanky with big feet. He’s one of the most beautiful cats I’ve seen (don’t tell my other three I said that) and the above picture doesn’t do him much justice. He’s got the prettiest shades of peach and rusty orange mixed in with his gray fur.

On Friday morning, Harree woke up with what I called a “stiff neck”. If Harry were a human, it would be diagnosed as a stiff neck. He was walking odd, and holding his head down, close to his chest. Jimmy left to go to school, and I stayed home to work and keep an eye on Harree. While his behavior hadn’t changed, after about an hour I realized the neck thing wasn’t going away, so I told Jimmy he needed to come back home so we could go to the vet and then I called the vet.

Harree was seen quickly but the vet didn’t know what was wrong. Stiff neck is a symptom for many things, so they needed to run bloodwork. They said they wanted to keep him for awhile to run some tests. We went home. A couple hours later the vet called Jimmy. They said he was showing signs of kidney failure, and they needed to start him on fluids. We agreed. Harree stayed at the vet til 6pm when they closed and we picked him up. His early blood tests showed low potassium and high levels of those compounds that are released when your kidneys aren’t doing their job. Upon leaving the hospital, his potassium was back in the normal range. They said we needed to come back in the morning, and keep an eye on him during the night.

The night went smoothly. Harree (surprisingly) left his catheter in and didn’t try to take off the bandage. He ate and drank. He was a bit weak, and still couldn’t lift his head, but he was bright, alert and responsive.

First thing this morning (Saturday) we took him back into the vet. His head had still not returned. So the vet had us leave him once again so they could give him more fluids and do more bloodwork. The vet called in the afternoon to say his kidneys were improving, but that over the night his potassium dropped even lower than before. Low potassium causes muscle weakness (hence why he couldn’t lift his head), if it gets too low it can effect respitory muscles making it diffcult to breathe. At 4pm we went back to the vet.

His potassium and kidney values were getting better but still not in the healthy range. He strongly suggested bringing Harree to an animal hospital for the remainder of the weekend (our vet doesn’t do overnights and is closed on Sundays), so he can stay on fluids and get potassium supplements. So, that is where he is now. We will be visiting him tomorrow to see how he is doing, and then we’ll be picking him up early Monday morning, and bringing him back to our vet.

I will post an update when we see him tomorrow.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. taraSG permalink
    June 27, 2009 10:06 pm

    I’m so sorry about your beautiful cat! I hope he feels better soon!

  2. Veil permalink
    July 7, 2009 10:24 pm

    Just an idea–could Haree have Lyme disease? I had it, and so did one of my 3 dogs (briefly–it was diagnosed quickly and she was cured). Anyway, I feel for you. It’s tough having a loved one sick.

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