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Need advice-Behavior Changes after Vetalog injection

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

My cat was diagnosed with a rodent ulcer on her bottom lip last week. The vet gave her an injection of Depo-Medrol and Vetalog.

Up until the injections, she was a very happy cat, always near me, always curious about everything, played with her toy mice and her companion. She was always in my lap and slept next to me at night. Purred constantly.

Since the injections last week, she has done a 180 turn. She has very little interest in the things she use to do. She doesn't want me to pick her up; instead of being into things, she sits on the sideline watching my other cat play. She is only about 8 months old.

Any suggestions? Is this normal? I'm at a loss!! How long will it take for her to get back to her old self? I miss my Happy Cat!

Thank you!
post #2 of 11
I have a cat with chronic rodent ulcer and have cats that have used Depo-Medrol. The ulcer wouldn't have this effect (unless it is infected) and Depo-Medrol usually perks them up.

I've not heard of Vetalog before but looked it up online. It says that one of the possible side effects is gastrointestinal irritation. I wonder if she is nauseated by it? It looks like it is a long acting drug and no nothing if the side effects remain while the drug is in effect. I suggest that you call your vet for advice on this one. If there is an infection, she'll need antibiotics.

I hope she feels better soon!
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
She could very well be nauseated, although she's eating enough to feed a dog!

She is also on an antibiotic. I put a call in to the vet and am waiting to hear back from him.

I never heard of a rodent ulcer before last week! Wasn't sure if I took her in too soon or if maybe I should have waited a couple of days longer to see if it would have cleared up on it's own. After seeing the pictures online of how bad it could get, I'm glad I took her in on day 3.

From what I read up on rodent ulcers, they really don't know what causes them - stress (I was gone on vacation for 6 days; first time being away from my kitties since adopting them in July) or food allergies (a week prior to the breakout I didn't have a chance to go to Petsmart for Science Diet so I stopped by the grocery store and bought Purina's One dry cat food).

post #4 of 11
Oftentimes, rodent ulcer becomes chronic. What seems to trigger flare ups with my Pinky is the same thing that causes Feline Acne: plastic food or water bowls, plastic mats under the water bowls, or not sterilizing the bowls often enough. Plastic harbors bacterias from the food so you never want to use those. Use stainless or ceramic and even with those, keep 2 sets so you can rotate them while they are in the dishwasher.

Once in a while it gets to the point where he needs antibiotics, but most often it just takes renewed dilligence on my part to keep things sterilized for him. For years we thought it was acne and treated it as such. In the last year (with a new vet), his diagnose was switched to rodent ulcer.
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
I use a ceramic food bowl, and a metal water bowl, up until a week ago when I bought a Drinkwell brand pet fountain. I do use a plastic under the bowl(s). I'll make sure I wash out the fountain often.

It's been 8 days since the injections and antibiotics, the ulcer is near gone, but she has not bounced back personality wise. Not much interest in anything.

I've left two messages for the vet to call since Wednesday (he's off on Thursdays) and haven't heard back.
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
The vet never did call.

One of the side effects I read about on the Vetalog is excessive thirst and hunger. Her stomach is really bloated, she's put on weight, and burps some.

I don't mean to sound stupid, but should I be concerned enough to take her back in, or should I give the medication more time to get out of her system?
post #7 of 11
I would call the vet again. Antibiotics can also cause gastrointestinal upset.
post #8 of 11
I agree with Mom of 4: call the vet once again and be persistant with them so they call you back. I've had to switch meds in the past when they've had reactions to them.
post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
I called the office again this morning, told the receptionist that the vet hadn't called back, so she had me come in to see his partner.

Basically he said to give it a few more days before he runs bloodwork on her. That she may be one of those rare cases who cannot tolerate steroid injections. She's had Depo-Medrol once before, for a URI, and did fine, so I still think it's the Vetalog. Her temp was fine today, and she is still eating and drinking quite a bit.

He didn't tell me anything that a quick return call wouldn't have solved.

post #10 of 11
My cat Sian got really bloated on Vetalog. He gained 2 pounds in less than 2 weeks. He looked so bloated after he got his daily subQ fluids I was afraid he was going to pop. Poor baby.

I asked the Vet whether it could be a side effect of the medication. She didn't think it was too likely. Still, we cut back on the dosage of Vetalog and reduced his subQs from 150 to 100ccs/day. The bloating and weight gain went away.

He's also a bit grumpy lately. I didn't even think to attribute it to the medication. Thought he was just feeling sick.

I found this on another pet site: "Common side effects of triamcinolone (i.e., Vetalog) include vomiting, behavior modification such as depression and lethargy, increased thirst, urination and appetite, and panting."

post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 
Mine received only one injection of Vetalog, but yes, she has seemed to have bloated some, and it's been two weeks and one day - her happy cat personality still hasn't come back.

The good news is her sneezing has decreased and the rodent ulcer is gone!
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