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Off Meds

Bob's list of medications is down to only taking Doxy to kill off that haemobartonella parasite. Other than that, the meds to keep him from vomiting are long worn off. From what I can tell, Bob has been successfully keeping his food down this week. He's had a bit of that nice fattening dry food and kept that down, too. I'm VERY glad!

Bob's appetite has been all over the place. His love for dry food really keeps him going, but I can't offer it to him all the time. I just can't. It's too much fat. That said, at least he's interested in eating most times and even if he doesn't eat a lot, he eats. He'll pick at the other cat's bowls, too, so this is all good to me. In the last two days, Bob's been a bit more frisky, as well. He was playing rather spritely and he was laying belly up for the first time in well over a year. He looked very content.

Although he's still very thin, Bob's still hanging in there and that's what matters to me. It's also been two weeks since he's been to a Vet, which I am VERY grateful for—more than anything else. Keeping Bob home to relax and recover is the best medicine I can think of and it seems to be working.

Are we all done talking about Bob? Nope. Still don't know what was WRONG with him, but he'll have a blood test in a few more weeks to check some of his levels and perhaps that will tell us more OR perhaps I should stop wondering and just enjoy the boy!

The Jury is Still Out

Bob continues to pass the days without much change. As of last night he is off Flagyl and now I will begin to worry again. Will he be able to keep his food down? This is a big week for Bob. If he can continue to eat, at least small meals and not vomit, I think he'll be all right. He still has one more Cerenia to take, which will keep his belly quiet, but by later in the week, the true test will come. This is where I'll start to know if Bob is slipping down that slope or if he has recovered enough to suffer more simply from "Old Cat" ailments, than from anything in particular.

Bob's PLI test came back SlIGHTLY elevated. Well, gee, they FINALL did the test AFTER he'd been getting IV's for 2 weeks, so sure, the results are not remarkable. They suggest to repeat the test in two weeks. Really nothing has been found so far, other than the haemobartonella.

Bob's appetite fluctuates and I'm complicating things by continuing to try new foods to encourage him to eat and eat more than just a lick of broth. This morning he ate really well for me and that was great. He'll also happily eat that nice fattening grain-free dry food. He ate so much of it that he vomited it all back up. A big fist-size blow out. After that I've been more careful, letting him have access to small amounts and he's been keeping that down. He only gets the dry once per day and at such a small amount, I'm not going to sweat it.

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Napping Buddies

Napping Buddies

Nora and Bob enjoy dreams of happier days to come.

Three Weeks Ago Today It Began

I've had a hard time getting myself to put words together about Bob's mysterious health problems. It might be due to just being tired of the worrying, the runs to VREC in Norwalk, the waiting for test results and the constant search for something Bob will eat that's NOT high fat, grain-free dry food.

Bob had his endoscopy done and the biopsies taken. The results came in just this morning. Nothing remarkable was found. The toxoplasmosis test came back negative and the results for his PLI test are pending. Bob's ALT values, which have been notoriously high for over a year, have dropped way down to 170 (from over 500, previously). I don't know what's causing the improvement. I'm grateful for it but it still makes me wonder how a cat with crappy Liver function get that to turn around? He's basically been getting IV's and not much in the way of meds until after he was released last Saturday evening, so why are things improving?

Bob continues to be on Doxy, Cerenia and Flagyl. His appetite sucks. He has waves of depression and lethargy, followed by purring, jumping up on the bed (which is very high up, so it's great he can still make it), grooming himself and will even chase after an occasional toy. He has interest in food, but I've been experimenting with different foods and most of them do not appeal to him beyond just a few test bites. I know the Doxy can give him an upset stomach and the Flagyl might be killing off his appetite as well.

Oh and by the way, Nora has become Bob's best friend. They nap together all the time. I'm really glad Bob has some feline support.

Sleep the Day Away

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Haemobartonella Felis

I'm not sure why the Vet is not more interested that Bob's Bartonella test came back positive for Haemobartonella Felis or Mycoplasma.

This effects Bob's red blood cells and can really make him sick, even die. He's being treated with Doxy, as mentioned in my last post, but I wonder how much this is putting a strain on Bob and if the treatment will help him feel MUCH improved?

Bob's night in the hospital passed without much incident. He vomited once. Is on his IV. The re-checked ultrasound showed some improvement in his pancreas. At noon, Bob will be sedated, the scary part of his day, and he will have the endoscopy done and biopsies taken. Hopefully, he will wake back up from sedation and be ready to come home later today.

All this has been like reading a mystery novel that's slowly beginning to reveal a thrilling conclusion.

What IS making Bob sick?

All Aboard the Bob Dollercoaster!

Bob is back in the hospital.

We're still trying to get at the bottom of what ails him. They did find out he has an infection that came up in his Bartonella test, though he does not have Bartonella. I'll post that finding when I get the details, but I do know the result of this infection is anemia and he will need to be on Doxycycline.

Bob is having his ultraound repeated and will have an endoscopy done tomorrow. Will this determine anything? Probably not, but I'd rather do this, than have him chopped open. Bob is an old man. Surgery will have to be a last resort for him, plus, I think he's getting a bit better. Even though his vomiting continues, he hasn't vomited his food for 3 days and when he does vomit it's a small quantity of foam or rarely, bile.

I also got so fed up (pardon the almost pun) with Bob not wanting to eat that I decided to go with my gut and pulled Bob off his "prescription" diet and put him back on his regular food. I feed him low fat, single source protein already, so it's fine as it is. Yes, Bob is off eating RAW but only because Bob is a senior and he has FIV. If, for some reason, I didn't handle his raw food properly, I would not want him to get sick and it IS a bit rich for him to handle. I would feel fine giving my other cats the raw as they don't get raw exclusively and they're all young and in fairly good health, knock wood.

Lastly, here's to Dr. Larry for whipping up a firestorm so Bob can get more focused help from the vets at the hospital. I really appreciate Dr. Larry's passion and determination not to let me, and especially, Bob down.

I also want to thank you all for your supportive words, your helpful advice and affection. This is a rough road. My friend, Deb, calls it the Bob Dollercoaster! I couldn't agree more.

And now for something completely different

A few months ago, I was contacted by Anne, a very nice lady who works for Yahoo. She asked for permission to use a photo I took of my kitty, Petunia, as reference art for their new series of animal themed emoticons. The series; Emoticats™ went live today!

Tunie is Famous!! "Talk to the Paw" Emoticat™ Icon released today!

To view the page on Yahoo, just visit HERE

Here's the original photo

I know!

Fed Up

I wish to God the f-ing Doctors would stop over-diagnosing Bob and get down to what is wrong with him before he dies on me. Now they say he has slightly elevated thyroid so he's on thyroid meds now. Of course the second he went on the meds, he stopped eating. He won't eat the food he is supposed to eat. He won't eat it warm, with tuna water on it. No. He might eat the grain-free dry food the other cats get, but he can't handle that!!!!!! I am watching Bob waste away on me while these Vets tell me to just take it slow and it's ok that he vomits then doesn't eat for 12 hours or more.

If someone doesn't figure this out soon, Bob is going to DIE. I don't have the expertise to know what to do for him. All I do is fumble around, clean up his vomit, treat him with loving-kindness as much as I can and try to get him to eat what he is supposed to eat, when he is supposed to eat it. I am TIRED. The stress and anxiety is driving me to the brink.

It's been 16 days. When am I going to get some answers that aren't guesses and that start showing me that Bob can turn around from this???!!!!

A Heavy Heart

The past few days have continued to be an up and down roller coaster of emotions. I'm dedicated to finding a way to help Bob feel good, consistently, not just for a few hours or a day, but it's taking it's toll on my health, now, too. When Bob is sick, I feel sick with worry. Whatever is ailing him, we still do not know for certain. The candidates range from pancreatitis and/or inflamed bowel disorder affected or caused by, cancer, hyperthyroid, heartworm, bartonella, who knows what.

I do know that Bob came home on Friday night and seemed to be glad to be back. His appetite was good and he kept his food down. The next morning, I heard vomiting. I jumped out of bed to find Gracie vomiting up a hariball! Can I PLEASE get a break here?

An hour later, Bob vomited, too. A BIG, HARD, HARIBALL! I was furious! Was THIS the reason for Bob being sick all this time? $4000.00 in Vet bills for this??? Surely that is not the case!

Bob did well that day, but the next day I woke to vomiting again. I thought my heart was going to leap out of my chest! This time it was Spencer vomiting up a hariball. Man, I don't know why the timing has to be like this! At least Bob kept his food down, but...

...only until 1 hour after he ate. On Sunday at 1 AM he barfed up his food. I was despondent. He continued to vomit at 2 AM and 4 AM, both times mostly just foam or a tiny bit of fur. By 10 AM that morning, Bob was hungry and ready to stuff himself again. I was surprised, but relieved. Bob only gets 1/8 c of food, 4 times a day, so he gobbled everything up and was ready for more. Big meany-me would not give him more... (to see photos and more about Bob, click link below)

Welcome Home!

Enjoying the sunshine after his long stay in the hospital.

More on Bob's journey soon.

After a long journey.jpg

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