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Tuxedo could really use some board magic! - Page 3

post #61 of 85
Thread Starter 
Now GARY needs some "be strong" vibes!!!!

Tuxedo needs a shot of nupigen every day (stimulates red blood cell growth). This is a small dose, thus a small needle. Tonight will be the first time we have to administer this ourselves. There's no way I can do it, and Gary got lessons from the vet yesterday. He had no problems vaccinating sheep and goats on his farm, but a seven-pound cat... and his Tuxie-boy at that.... I don't know.... (I have a feeling we'll be heading to the vet everyday).

Tuxie also needs a shot of Epigen 3x per week (this is to stimulate white blood cell production). This is a large needle with a larger dose.

I get to pill him with the prednisone - this has been no problem. *Phew*

But the prednisone is already helping, and he's eating a little bit a LOT.

I did post pics of Tuxedo in the fur-pics lounge. Here's a link: Tuxedo Pics
post #62 of 85
sending you guys be strong vibes.... be strong.. tuxedo will be well even before u guys know it.. hang in there!
post #63 of 85
Thread Starter 
I should probably wait until we've talked to Dr. Strauss (the specialist) this morning so I have all the detail, BUT....

Tuxedo has gained over half a pound! (The prednisone is working its miracles )

After the transfusion, his red blood cell count was 20. We started him on the Nupogen (to boost white blood production, a daily shot) and Epogen (to boost red blood cell production - a shot every other day).

Blood test results a week after we began the therapies indicate his white blood cell count is normal, and we've taken him off the Nupogen, pending next week's blood test.

His red blood cell count is 20 - the same as it was when he started! That means that he is producing red blood cells, or there's no way it could have stayed at the same level for a week! So the Epogen is starting to work. Hopefully he'll only need to be on it for a few more weeks. When (if) his red blood cell count reaches 30, we take him off the meds (to quote a friend - "Knocking furiously on wood!").

He's perky, interacting with the other cats, and is SO GOOD about traveling to the vet to get his shot(s) - because we couldn't do it ourselves, whimps that we are.

He's not out of the woods yet, so to speak, but things are looking SOOOOOO hopeful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for all your vibes for Tuxedo!

C'mon Tuxedo's bone marrow, keep going!!!!!!!!!!!
post #64 of 85
Happy happy dance! I'm SOOOOO glad and relieved to hear that Tuxedo's bone marrow seems to be recovering. Come on bone marrow!!!

Give him a bunch of scritches from me!
post #65 of 85
Misty eyes here! SOOOOOOOOOOOo happy things seem to be lookin' up! Scritches for the boy -- tell him what a brave fellow he is. Keeping the "GO GO GO, Marrow" vibes comin' atcha.
post #66 of 85
I'm still keeping my fingers crossed for him. That does sound like good news, though.
post #67 of 85
Come on Tuxedo! Keep getting better!
post #68 of 85
How are Tuxedo and Flowerbelle???
post #69 of 85
Thread Starter 
Thanks for asking - I was just about to post an update. (BTW - sorry I've been "missing" for a while - Gary and I are so busy at the new job I almost can't believe it!)

We took Tuxedo in for his weekly blood work today - and HIS RED BLOOD CELL COUNT IS UP TO 23!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We were very worried it might have remained constant, and then Doc would have wanted to start alternate therapies. We won't have the full results until tomorrow, but he's off the Nupogen for a week, so if his white blood cell count has remained constant, we really, really have a lot of hope that his bone marrow is responding to the treatment, and once he reaches a red blood cell count of 33 we'll take him off the Epogen. I don't know about the prednisone - but hopefully these drugs with the immune suppresion have kicked in the bone marrow working, and we may be OK.

C'mon Tuxedo - keep it going!

He is REALLY feeling better! He causes major hassles again while getting his shots and having blood drawn, he's playing again - alert, batting the other cats when they bother him - and he's eating like a maniac (YAY!) and gained another 5 ounces! He now weighs 8 pounds 11 ounces. He LOOKS healthy, and his nose and pads on his paws are PINK again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU everyone for all your good thoughts for him, because it's WORKING!

Flowerbelle - that's another story. We had no idea how much energy her body was putting into fighting that virus in her eye. Now that her eye has completely healed from the surgery - SHE IS A MANIAC! All Gary and I keep saying to each other is - we though cats were supposed to sleep 18 hours a day. She's got it completely backwards! She has so much energy it is truly amazing. We feel a little guilty from time to time that she lives with us in our very small home. We constantly rotate toys for her, we make sure she's got as much room as we can create for her to run, and we've opened up a few new levels for her to crash around on, but WOW is she a handful!!!!!!!

We're weaning her off of eating kitten food by herself in the bathroom, and we have been experiencing quite a few REALLY noisy nights! Now instead of letting her in the bathroom and getting down her food, we pick her up and stick her over at the regular free-feeding bowls. We make sure to give her lots of attention, brushes and play time with just her, but she does NOT like that she can't have her kitten food whenever she wants it anymore, poor little thing (said while rolling my eyes!)

Thank GOD Shelly, Lazlo and Spooky take turns playing with her. Tuxedo is interested in play these days, but not with her. But it is NOT fun having one 14 pound cat and one seven pound cat JUMPING somewhere on you, trouncing around on you and bolting out of the room at all hours of the morning or night! Good thing we're not getting much sleep anyway, LOL!
post #70 of 85
I am so happy that his numbers are still rising! Go Tuxedo go!!!

Perhaps y'all should install an outdoor run for Flowerbelle so she can burn off all that energy she wasn't able to use before!
post #71 of 85
This is great! I am so happy!!!
post #72 of 85
Thread Starter 
Aw, Tuxedo, you were doing so well!

At his latest blood test (which we still do weekly), his packed cell volume was up to 26. I was incorrectly referring to that as his red blood cell count, which is actually 4.5 this week, up from 4.1. The bad news is his white blood cell count has been steadily dropping, and fell off the charts at this latest test. It was as high as 12,000 (normal adult male cat is between 3500 and 15,000), but has fallen to 3100 - below "acceptable low" of 3300. Our vet is consulting with the specialist, and should be back to us today. He expects we have to put Tuxedo back on the Nupogen (to stimulate white blood cell production). That's a daily shot.

We're still not able to give him the injections ourselves. God - I hope none of our cats ever develops diabetes!!!! (Knock wood!). He's still on the Epogen (every other day).

Despite the discouraging news, Gary and I could care less if we have to do this for the rest of Tuxedo's life - just so long as the meds remain effective (please, please, please, please, please). Obviously the best of all worlds would be if these things kick-started his bone marrow production, but with this white blood cell count news, it's a bit discouraging. HOWEVER - Tuxedo obviously feels great. He's more social with us and the other cats than he's ever been. He is TOTALLY into playing, is so alert and perky - and just a happy, happy guy. He likes his space, and he'll let the other kitties know it with bats to the head - but he's been playing with Flowerbelle (he was her first bud when she first came home. Now Shel's her real pal, but Tuxedo's "back"!), he's been annoying Spooky, he's resumed his roost at the top of the cat tree - and he's just generally so ALIVE.

And of all our cats, he's really the most affectionate when it comes to giving love. Spooky now loves to be loved, and will sit on a lap at any opportunity. Shelly has even become a lap cat, though he's far to large for it to be comfortable, LOL! Flowerbelle has way too much energy to want to be loved - except when she's completely zonked out or just woken up but hasn't gotten enough sleep yet. Lazlo is still our stoic gentleman, though he likes to be brushed in the bathroom at least once a day.

But Tuxedo - he's not very good at being loved. He enjoys brushes for a very short period of time, and he likes having his cheeks and under his chin stroked for a bit here and there - but he likes to let you know he loves you. He'll hop up on one of the various cat trees and meow - and when it isn't a treat he wants, he'll lean out - and if Gary or I (I get included now ) lean over, he'll headbump us - and I mean BUMP and push his head into our cheeks, lean his whole body into it and purr and just rub heads with us. It is the sweetest thing in the world.
post #73 of 85
Thread Starter 
C'mon Tuxedo - you have GOT to get that bone marrow working on its own!!!!!!!!!! Daddy would literally go insane if anything happened to you. C'mon Kiddo, you seem so happy these days, you've GOT to get it going!
post #74 of 85
C'mon Tuxedo!!!! Lots of positive vibes coming your way!
post #75 of 85
Lots and lots and lots of vibes...come on boy you can do it.
post #76 of 85
LDG , I am so sorry Tuxedo is not doing to well at this time . Hang in there girl

I will say a prayer for Tuxedo to get well
post #77 of 85
Tuxie, you need to get well!!!!!!!
post #78 of 85
Adding my vibes to Tuxedo. He's such a special little boy, and I know how much Gary and you love him....
post #79 of 85
Come on Tuxedo....generate those white blood cells!!! Go! Go! Go!

Laurie, has the specialist figured out what caused your little guy's problems?
post #80 of 85
Thread Starter 
Nope. And they won't. They've tested for so many things - and he said they could go on testing forever, basically. They've gone beyond the usual tests as it is. At this point, it really could have been anything, and likely something they can't even detect.

Although I'm glad you brought this up, because Gary asked last night if I think it could have been from the fire here. That was late November, and we did have that chemical dust everywhere. We did our best to protect the kitties from it, but I'm sure they breathed some in, and could very well had some on their fur, even after we wiped them down - just from picking it up from the carpet before we got the chance to clean it. We vacuumed - but that dust was so fine, perhaps the vacuum didn't get it all up (thus why we steam cleaned). It's a good theory to me - but the problem is his heart is enlarged, which means the anemia was developing over a long period of time. I guess I should ask what that means - because his PCV was 33 back in early October, so he wasn't technically anemic then. Hmmmmmm..............

But bottom-line is they don't know what has caused the immune response that caused his bone marrow to shut down, it's just being called an "autoimmune disease." The prednisone in this dosage is suppressing his immune system response, so he's not rejecting the medication. The bummer with the white blood cell count is that it responded so rapidly to the meds - he was off the Nupogen after one week of treatment. But apparently his bone marrow just didn't keep the production levels up and it has been falling off, and apparently now at an expanding rate.
post #81 of 85
Aw, poor little Tuxie! You just gotta get well! poor baby! I hope they find out what's going on with the poor baby soon!
post #82 of 85
oh dear! I hope tuxedo gets well soon!! C'mon tuxedo, you can do it!
post #83 of 85
Sending my love and good thoughts to Tuxedo...
post #84 of 85
Saying a prayer for Tuxedo, your little fighter, and for you and Gary.

Jill and Candy
post #85 of 85
This is the first I have seen of this thread and I am so sorry your baby is sick. I hope they can find something and fix it or that he can fix himself.
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