TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Health › Head hanging low
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Head hanging low

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
My co-worker asked me to ask about one of her cats, because this is definitely a change in behaviour but neither of us have heard about this as a symptom and wondered if anyone here had heard of or experienced this before.

Her cat Whiskers, who is rather rotund, has been walking around with her head low to the ground. She can lift her head up, but doesn't lift her head up above her knees usually. There is (always ) a battle for Alpha between Whiskers and Angel. Angel went after Whiskers and Whiskers didn't make a sound - this is unusual since Whiskers is usually a drama queen and makes you think she's dying if someone even touches her.

I know Kim will take her to the vet as soon as she can, but at this point Whiskers isn't acting ill except for the changes in behaviour. She is still eating, drinking and using the litterbox. Kim also said that she felt all around Whiskers' body and didn't feel anything out of the ordinary, and Whiskers didn't act like any part hurt. I did give her the tip to run her hand just over Whiskers but not actually touching her to see if she feels any hot spots that would indicate an injury that is healing.

Has anyone heard of this or experienced this?
post #2 of 10
I find this list of symptoms/treatments often useful....have a look unfer the letter H for head hanging

Not that you/your friend will be able to diagnose, but certainly some possibilities to share with the Vet and, certainly good reason for bloodwork.

If Whiskers is over 7 yo, and were she mine, I'd be having yearly "senior bloodwork panels" done as a matter of course.
post #3 of 10
don't worry i'm sure its nothing.
post #4 of 10
I'd actually be concerend about ear infections.....I once saw a kitty with a severe inner ear infection with his head hanging low. I've seen several who have "crooked" heads because an ear infection went untreated & as a result their balance is off.
post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by white cat lover View Post
I'd actually be concerend about ear infections.....I once saw a kitty with a severe inner ear infection with his head hanging low. I've seen several who have "crooked" heads because an ear infection went untreated & as a result their balance is off.
Definitely have her ears checked. Boo was doing the same thing a few years ago, and she had an inner ear infection. She was behaving the same exact way.
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thank you everyone. I told Kim what you said, that it could be an inner ear infection. She's calling the vet and hopefully can get Whiskers in tonight.
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Just wanted to update...

Kim took Whiskers to the vet last night, and you guys were spot on! She does have inner ear infections in both ears, with the left worse than the right. So she's on antibiotics (Kim couldn't remember which one, said she thinks it starts with a B), and is already moving around the house more than in the past couple days.

The vet is concerned about other neurological issues, since Whiskers is cross-eyed and shows her third eyelid regularly. I hope it's just the ear infections, though. Any vibes for Whiskers would sure be appreciated. She's a sweet little orange girl.
post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb View Post
Just wanted to update...

Kim took Whiskers to the vet last night, and you guys were spot on! She does have inner ear infections in both ears, with the left worse than the right. So she's on antibiotics (Kim couldn't remember which one, said she thinks it starts with a B), and is already moving around the house more than in the past couple days.

The vet is concerned about other neurological issues, since Whiskers is cross-eyed and shows her third eyelid regularly. I hope it's just the ear infections, though. Any vibes for Whiskers would sure be appreciated. She's a sweet little orange girl.
Glad she found the cause! Ear infections are a common cause of Horner's syndrome - pressure on the nerve that controls eye movement and the eyelids - and can result in third eyelid being prominent, dilated/constricted pupils, crossed eyes, and the eyes looking slightly sunken. It usually occurs on the same side as the infected ear, but as both are affected it would make sense that the Horner's (if it is that) would be on both sides also.

There are other causes (tapeworm believe it or not, and trauma ie bruising or inflammation to the neck or jaw, dental problems, as well as other infections) - is she due a return visit to the vet? He/she should be able to see nerve inflammation in a normal eye exam if it is Horner's. It usually resolves without treatment once underlying causes, if any, are cleared up but can take a while to clear up, sometimes a couple of months or so. If it is that, the vet may prescribe eye drops to help with pupil dilation, but it's not usually serious and hopefully will clear up once the ears are better
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb View Post
Just wanted to update...
So she's on antibiotics (Kim couldn't remember which one, said she thinks it starts with a B)...
If it's Baytril, you might want to suggest that she double-check the dosage that's been prescribed. Baytril is an excellent antibiotic, but it's not without risks (which I personally found very surprising)...

The correct dosage for cats is only 5mg/kg/day. So, she'll have to do the math, keeping in mind that a kilo is 2.2 pounds. She should start with a very accurate weighing of the cat.

The risks are of blindness and kidney damage. The concern around kidney damage should be heightened if the cat is older, as reduced kidney function is already a fact of life for many older cats. Remember, by the time renal insufficiency shows up in bloodwork, more than one half of the function has already been lost.

Here's some of that information from Marvistavet:
Retinal damage has been seen in cats when higher doses (such as might be used to treat a Pseudomonas ear infection) are used. This reaction is not common even with very high doses, but there is no way to pedict which cats will react. Blindness, temporary or permanent, can result. This reaction has only been reported with enrofloxacin and not with other fluoroquinolones, as it is theorized that the biochemical structure of enrofloxacin leads to especially high concentrations in the feline eye (in other words, this reaction is theoretically possible with any fluoroquinolones but enrofloxacin is especially predisposed to causing this reaction)."


valanhb- I'm sending you a PM with another link which has some references from Plumb's Veterinary Handbook to both concerns.
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb View Post
Just wanted to update...

Kim took Whiskers to the vet last night, and you guys were spot on! She does have inner ear infections in both ears, with the left worse than the right. So she's on antibiotics (Kim couldn't remember which one, said she thinks it starts with a B), and is already moving around the house more than in the past couple days.

The vet is concerned about other neurological issues, since Whiskers is cross-eyed and shows her third eyelid regularly. I hope it's just the ear infections, though. Any vibes for Whiskers would sure be appreciated. She's a sweet little orange girl.
Many mega for Whiskers speedy recovery!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cat Health
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Health › Head hanging low