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The Hemmy Saga Continues and this is funny stuff

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
So I've been posting about my cat Hemmy. In case you missed in, Hemmy is about 9 years old. He's a neutered DLH male cat that's had a whole host of medical issues throughout his life the big one being chronic UTI's that resulted in an emergency amputation of his penis to allow crystals to flow through more freely. He very nearly died then but since his surgery and diet change he's been very healthy.

He is quite accident prone so our vet has seen a lot of us for other issues as well. Thankfully they were all minor and easily treated. It just seems we can't stay out of the vet's office with him.

So last Tuesday I discovered some bumps on his stomach, in his nipples actually but I've not been that specific with my posts before now out of discretion for Hemmy's feelings. What male cat wants his nipples discussed? Fearing no good, I took him to the vet on Wednesday. We decided to treat with antibiotics and an anti-inflammatory. The thinking was that if it was an infection, we would know as the meds cleared it up without having to do invasive surgery and biopsies.

The meds didn't work and I took him back to the vet on Monday where we decided to do surgery as quickly as possible since it was clear it wasn't an infection and if the places were cancerous we wanted to remove them as quickly as possible. My vet assured me that this was rare in male cats but it could sometimes happen and we didn't want to take any chances.

So, I dropped him off for surgery on Wednesday morning saying many prayers that the biopsies would show the places as benign. My vet called me at about 11. I was immediatly concerned because that seemed too early to be done. We had decided to do blood work to make sure he didn't have anything going on with liver, kidneys, etc. that might prevent surgery. Naturally, my first thought was that something came back that caused them to not do the surgery.

You can imagine my surprise and relief when my vet told me there was good news. Earlier this year, we'd given Hemmy a prescription for spraying. He's a bad sprayer and usually I can stop him but this was a very bad bought and my youngest cat was peeing wherever Hemmy sprayed and my house was beyond disgusting so I did what I swore I would never do and I medicated for a behavioral issue but I felt I was out of options. Hemmy took his meds exactly as prescribed because my vet told me it was important to do so. We didn't miss a single one.

Because he'd been on this medication something kept nagging at my vet. She started pulling out books and doing research. She read everything she could find about the medication. This had occurred with a scant few dogs before, but never with a cat. She couldn't believe it. When Hemmy arrived for surgery on Tuesday she shaved around his nipples and took a close, close look. She squeezed. Out came milk! My neutered, male, penis-less cat is lactating! All I could think of when she told me was that scene in Meet The Parents where the main character says, "You can milk anything with nipples."

We believe it should clear up on its own but are watching it in case it doesn't. We've not yet discussed what will need to be done if it doesn't but I can already tell a difference. I offered to take him back up there if she wanted to do a paper on him. Since this have never been documented before it might be important to take a few notes, you know what I mean? She was so surprised at what she's found but having lived with Hemmy for seven years I'm really not all that surprised. If any cat could do it, it's him!

So, we are very relieved that Hemmy is as ok as lactating male cat can be. Thank you very much to everyone who's asked about him and said prayers for us. I appreciate them more than you know.

Oh, yeah, one more thing. I told the vet that if he has kittens I'm holding them responsible for finding them all homes. She told me that she doesn't think he's grown a uterus. I told her she doesn't know Hemmy very well!
post #2 of 16
Lucky Hemmy!

Now, as to discussing male nipples, I have to say that I think they don't get discussed enough. I had a male acquaintance who died of breast cancer, and I understand it's extremely serious when it happens.
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
I'm so sorry about your friend. You're right. Maybe Hemmy can help educate males of the human persuasion.

I forgot to mention in my above post that the medicine Hemmy took is a very low dose of estrogen. Go figure.
post #4 of 16
So glad to hear that everything turned out okay with him! He certainly sounds like the one male cat who would have that issue.
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Namo View Post
So glad to hear that everything turned out okay with him! He certainly sounds like the one male cat who would have that issue.
He really is. What a cat!
post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by howtoholdacat View Post
...Earlier this year, we'd given Hemmy a prescription for spraying...
Could I ask which drug was prescribed?
post #7 of 16
Thanks for the update! I hope Hemmy hasn't been totally humiliated! Best of luck to you from me and my crew.
post #8 of 16
It sounds like Hemmy is going to be your resident "goofball" for quite some time to come. He makes me think of the stories of James Herriot. A chapter about Hemmy would fit into one of his books very nicely.

I am so glad that this turned out to be "just" male lactation instead of much more serious cancer, or even benign tumors.

For the inappropriate urination fluoxetine works wonders and so far has proven to be safe with few side effects in cats. I hate to sound like a "drug pusher" for this type of issue, but I know what it is like to have a house pretty much completely covered in cat pee. After 3 years I was at my wits end and couldn't take it any longer. There is a really good article from the world small animal conference of the Veterinary Information Network about feline aggression and elimination disorders about how the different medications work and what dosages for spraying.

There is a kitty on the IBD forum I belong to that has been on it for 9 years with no ill effects. (had the IBD prior to needing the fluoxetine).
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kittymonsters View Post
It sounds like Hemmy is going to be your resident "goofball" for quite some time to come. He makes me think of the stories of James Herriot. A chapter about Hemmy would fit into one of his books very nicely.
Actually, in our household there's stiff competition for that title! But, yes most of my cats would fit into James Herriot's books rather well.

Thanks for your encouragement about the meds. I had mixed feelings but chose to use them since I felt I was losing the battle. I can honestly say it did cure the problem and I was able to regain control. No idea what we'll do in the future if the problem arises again but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. Obviously in Hemmy's case the meds are out but in a different cat with the same problem I'd probably be ok to use the drugs again once I'd exhausted all behavioral options.
post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by howtoholdacat View Post
...I had mixed feelings but chose to use them...in a different cat with the same problem I'd probably be ok to use the drugs again once I'd exhausted all behavioral options.
Once again, what was the drug that you used?
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLAISE View Post
Once again, what was the drug that you used?
Sorry, missed your previous post. I'll have to look it up and get back to you. I can't remember the name off the top of my head.
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by howtoholdacat View Post
. When Hemmy arrived for surgery on Tuesday she shaved around his nipples and took a close, close look. She squeezed. Out came milk! My neutered, male, penis-less cat is lactating! All I could think of when she told me was that scene in Meet The Parents where the main character says, "You can milk anything with nipples."
oh my gosh I am sorry to say this, but I did have a at the above paragraph.

But I am so glad both you and your vet are very attentive and that Hemmy is ok and did not have to have surgery
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snake_Lady View Post
oh my gosh I am sorry to say this, but I did have a at the above paragraph.

But I am so glad both you and your vet are very attentive and that Hemmy is ok and did not have to have surgery
No worries, I had a laugh too! Actually I had two laughs. One of relief. The other of disbelief.

Hemmy, by the way, is back to his completely normal self. Lactation has ceased and he's kicking Seti's rear end around the house as normal. Let me add that Seti begs for a rear kicking and seems to enjoy it. Since it's all in good fun I let it go until someone goes too far. Then they deal with Mama!

Yeah, Hemmy lactating is pretty funny. Hemmy is short for Hemingway. Not only is he polydactyl but he's so much like the famous author I'm amazed. We joke that instead of hunting lions, as Ernest did, he hunts Labradors. Never has there been such a manly cat as Hemmy! I don't care what medical procedures have happened to him. He's still the manliest pet we have!
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
To anyone who's interested, the medication he took is called megestrol acetate or Ovaban as it is commonly called. It came with an instruction sheet from my vet explaining how important it is to give it exactly as prescribed (which we did, exactly). It lists possible side effects and lactation in male cats is definitely not on the list! Interestingly, in dogs it says change in hair color may occur.
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by howtoholdacat View Post
To anyone who's interested, the medication he took is called megestrol acetate or Ovaban as it is commonly called. It came with an instruction sheet from my vet explaining how important it is to give it exactly as prescribed (which we did, exactly). It lists possible side effects and lactation in male cats is definitely not on the list! Interestingly, in dogs it says change in hair color may occur.
I would suggest that you or your vet may want to call Ovaban's manufacturer to report a new adverse side effect.
post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 
I offered to take Hemmy back to the vet's office if they wanted to examine him further. They declined. Yours is a good suggestion though. I'll pass that on to them.
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