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please pray for my LEO! He has critical anemia!! - Page 3

post #61 of 128
OMG, he is sooo cute, Cookie. We do know, we do. Freddie was 7 months, the cutest most adorable kitten given to Sasha as a present after SiSi - his mama - got taken by a coyote!!! one year to the day Sasha got attacked last week. Freddie was 14 weeks when we got him from across the street and Sasha fell in love w/him instantly, as did we. Freddie died of acute leukemia in Eric's arms November 9, with Sasha in denial for a week afterward. We came home one night after the emotional devastation of it and there was big brother Sasha, banging his head against the wall next to Freddie's fishing pole toy. I just lost it. So losing not only my beloved SiSi after 11 years w/o any warning and then Freddie in the same year, was unbearable. If I had a proclivity to alcohol, I'd be gone by now. So when I read your words that "oh no I can't possibly lose him!" - I just sat there with tears running down my face because that is how I felt about Freddie and now Sasha when I saw him sitting in the pumpkin patch after I scared the coyote away not even blinking from the severe shock with his severed tongue hanging out and blood everywhere. I drove 30 minutes at 120 mph just to get to the nearest emergency room in these parts, the whole way thinking there was NOTHING I wouldn't do for Sasha. He is our last surviving one. We have two new trees in the backyard: a cherry tree for Freddie and a witch hazel tree for SiSi. I wasn't planning on a third. NO WAY. So we do understand your pain and this euphoria. Please keep writing and let us know what the outcome is. Even a month from now. Sincerely,
Elizabeth and Sasha
post #62 of 128
Another thread I'm just catching up on!!

Anita, what an experience. I'm so glad that little Leo seems to be feeling better and responding to his meds, and I hope this trend continues for a very long time. What a great Mommy he has! Too bad his Gramma doesn't get it.

Well, we do. And we're all rooting for the little guy. Please keep us posted. Hugs and scritches for everyone (as appropriate!)

Great pics!
post #63 of 128
Cookie... Your cats are beautiful! I'm very glad to hear Leo is doing better! I could almost hear how frantic you were when you weren't sure what was wrong and the sense of relief and determination when you found out what was wrong and the absolute joy having your beautiful cat showing signs of feeling better! I can relate to all of those emotions. I hope things continue to improve! Leo looks like a very lovable cat in the photos!

post #64 of 128
Cookie, more good news about your strong Leo! Thank you for the photos! I love the one of Leo in the window! Roxy and Leo must really enjoy their box! Stephanie
post #65 of 128
Thread Starter 
thank for all of your replies!!!!! and compliments to my precious furbabies!

I just thought I would let you know, there is no doubt today was a much better day for my Leo! He came downstairs again, was walking around rubbing furniture! (I guess marking or re-marking) and he was following me around, if I went to the kitchen he was there, back to the living room, he followed and rubbs my legs!!!! He also played more, and looked out the windows like he usually does, and even when he was resting on his favorite blanket you could see him alert to every noise, and eyes wide open!

I am so hopeful right now! my husband and I had a much better day, knowing Leo was feeling better! We will be so greatful for every good day we have with him! I am going to sleep now, and hope when I wake up tommorrow, Leo will have another good day!

All the best to all of you as well!
Thanks again! I have read the replies twice already!
post #66 of 128
That's great news. I love the photo of Roxy caring for Leo.
post #67 of 128
Anita- It's so wonderful that Leo is doing so much better

Elizabeth- You have been through so much, reading how Sasha reacted near Freddie's toy about had me in tears.

My heart goes out to both of you as you both have been through so much in the past few days. Stay strong. I truly believe everyone's prayers are being heard and thos ebabies are going to continue to get better
post #68 of 128
Anita as each day passes little Leo is going from strength to strength

And the same for Sasha Elizabeth

Tanyas correct, both of you have been through so much these past few days, it's every cat lovers nightmare.

You both deserve and headbutts from all our babies
post #69 of 128
YAY LEO! What a great note! And I am SO very happy. Every baby step has been good! Happy Day Anita, wonderful wonderful news.
post #70 of 128
OMG Anita, I HATE it when I miss threads like this because I'm so busy with work!!!! I was crying at first because I was so sad for you - and then I was crying because I was so happy for you and Leo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am so, so, so sorry to hear it's tumors.

When we didn't know what was wrong with Tuxedo, we discussed all the options with our vet. Gary was so upset he was constantly in tears for the first few days. It was HORRIBLE. My heart goes out to you big time.

HOWEVER, I'm sure you already know this, but there is not the same problem with toxicity in cats as there is with people with the treatment Leo's on now!! That HAS to be good news!

BTW - I am so curious. Was he eating litter? I feel like sending out an emergency notice to all vets saying "Do not Pooh-Pooh people who wonder if there's a problem with their cat eating litter! It is USUALLY a sign of developing anemia, so tell your client that you need to keep a close watch on those hemocrits from now on!!!!!"

Tuxedo's PCV was down to 12 when he got his blood transfusion. After the transfusion it went up to 24, which I understand is a fabulous result.

I'm so so sorry the anemia turned out to be non-regenerative. We are so fortunate with Tuxedo that his is regenerative. But we now seem to be stuck with a PCV level of 29. I don't know what we're going to do next. But, like Leo, he is obviousy feeling so much better. We are so so so fortunate to have him actually acting like his old self, playing and bounding around! It took him quite a while to recuperate from the biopsies and aspirates (his spleen was enlarged, so he had a spleen aspirate too). Sadly, his hair is not growing back in. It's been a little over two months now, I think. He has a huge bald spot on his hip, his belly, several bald patches on his neck and front legs. It doesn't seem to bother him, but he looks so raggedy, poor little guy!

How's Leo doing weight-wise, do you know? Tuxedo dropped from 11 pounds (his winter weight) to 7 before he started gaining weight again. He's back to 9.6 pounds now (about normal for summer) - but we were pumping him full of "treats" (kitten food, lol).

If you have ANY questions, I have done so much work on this now, please just ask or PM or e-mail me. If you want a second opinion on the medication, its effectiveness, etc., I'm happy to call the specialist that helped us with Tuxedo to ask for any info you want.

BTW - have you discussed iron levels and any need for a supplement with your vet? I have loads of info on that too, though not as it relates to Leo's specific problem, just anemia in general & in conjunction with Tuxedo's epogen therapy. But I have info on effective iron compounds and a pharmacy that can compound the best one in proper dosage for Leo, if he needs one, and it can be liquid or tablet, depending upon what he takes best. (Tuxedo is pills, definitely!!!!)

Anita, beautiful Leo is in my prayers, you can count on that! If there's ANYTHING I can do or info I can help with, please, please, please let me know!!!!!!!! You and he are fighting this together, and I hope we'll be hearing stories of Leo for a long, long time!
post #71 of 128
Thread Starter 
Hi All! Leo is better again today! He has more strength, is able to play, and is meowing away like he used too! He is also purring and lying on his back showing me his belly, and purring! all signs he is feeling better! He is eating even more too! He slept on me all night last night, and when ever I woke up for a couple of minutes to talk to him, he was awake, he purred away which is what he has always done since he was a kitten!

Thanks LDG for all your info, and supportive words! I feel for what you have had to go through as well, I read your thread too! Glad you got a fighter also!!

we will definetly have to share notes!

First and foremost, yes Leo did try and eat cat litter, this was when his count was very low (7)! Vets should really let people know about this syptom!

After the transfusion, Leo's count was only at 15, which was what they hoped for, then it went up to 19 the next 2 days. I was told that was good enough to feel fine....anything 24 and above is normal, so I would assume 29 is ok especially if it stays there without the epogen?

Leo also has the three shaved patches, one form the cathether/blood test/transfusion on his front leg, one on his shoulder and one near him back leg/bum both from the aspirate, the last two are sensative if I accidentally touch them still so I guess it takes quite a while for it to heal. I was wondering about the hair growing back too, especially since he is on a cancer fighting drug, but was told it should grow back.

The drug he is on is Hydrea 125 mg/day, I was told cats tolerate it very well, please let me know any info you can get about this drug. It seems to be working so far, I wasn't sure I was ever going to get to see Leo happy again, and I have! I am so greatful. He is a different cat from last week!

Weight wise I am sure Leo has gained since this happened. Also he weighed more at the vet last week than his check-up which was back in november...but he did look a little thinner than he should be, and now recovering we are letting him eat as much as he wants so he can gain strength. (recommended my vet)

Also, I give my cats GSE in wet food, but Leo was the only cat who doesn't like wet food, so I was never able to give it to him. My other two cats on the GSE are healthy as can be, could be just a coincidence, but anytime my other cats show any sign of illness I give them some and in two days there are fine. From what I know GSE gives thier immune system a boost...

my only other concern with Leo, is becuase he is on the cancer pill, his immune system is compromised so he is more at risk for secondary diseases, like colds, and we have heard him sneeze today once or twice..could be something he caught from other cats at the vet/hospitals...but it's not affecting him, his appetite has increased today! We are still isolating him from the other kitties till the sniffles are gone and he has his full strength!

I have been told anything about iron levels, but I will ask when I next speak to my vet...

Please know LDG you and Tuxdeo are on my mind as well and I hope he continues to do well! How sad we have both had to deal with such difficult situations with our furbabies, and Sahsacat too! Please feel free to talk to me anytime too, the support system we have from this site is truly remarkable! What would we do without the cat site?

I got the chance to have my Leo cuddle with me all night last night, nothing could have made me happier! Especially when he seemed quite mad at me after giving him his pill, (he does not like that, but will hopefully get used to it and realize he has no choice!) I am so proud of Leo for being such fighter, and he has been extra loving with me, which reasures me we are doing the right thing by giving him this chance to live life to the fullest he can!
post #72 of 128
What fantastic news, Anita! Leo truly is as strong as a lion! It's so wonderful to hear the two of you are having such special cuddle time together! I know that means so much to both of you. Thanks again for the update!
post #73 of 128
Awwww how lovely that must have been for you to have a long awaited cuddle from little Leo
post #74 of 128
That is such good news Anita. I am so happy for you. Leo knows down inside you are doing the best thing for him and that he needs his medicine. The cuddles prove it
post #75 of 128
Hydrea 125 is pretty good. Freddie had acute leukemia so he was on Baytril at the highest dose and most risky, to hold secondary infections at bay in ANY hope his system might manufacture some immunity, but he was just a kitten and not even fully developed yet. One thing I did which you may/may not find helpful, is to type on Google what your drugs are, such as "Hydrea and kittens" on the search line and see everything that pops up. For me, reading everything I could about what Freddie was going through w/his form of cancer made it less huge (well, not really) in that I had some grasp of what was going on medically in a way that the vet could not devote hours to teach me. We send an entire household full of strength your way! Go Leo Go Leo!
post #76 of 128
Here is Leo the cat with spirit!

post #77 of 128
Oh! Leo is just so beautiful! I love the way his pure white and black colors contrast eachother in such a lovely way! He looks like such a sweet baby!
post #78 of 128
Awwwww bless his little heart
post #79 of 128
Oh my, how gorgeous he is.
post #80 of 128
He is so cute I just wanna kiss him
post #81 of 128
He's so cute!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was just at the vet today but hadn't been to TCS yet. I'll ask about Hydrea 125 tomorrow.

Interesting about the PCV level info you have - vets 'round here all seem to think 40 is normal, with 33 at the low-end, which is why Tuxedo's still receiving Epogen. All blood work prior to the anemia had his levels around 33. Though I must say - he's playing and active again, and his nose and pads look pink again!

However, I just got hold of an article from Cornell on the use of Epogen in cats & dogs, and it basically says that the goal of any therapy is to get the PCV level back to 33% - 40% of normal - which is 24 - 26 if you use 40 as the starting point. ??????????????

I'm SO GLAD Leo's feeling and acting better!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It is SUCH a relief when this happens, and I know exactly what you mean that you just wanted to see him happy again. I'm so glad you're both enjoying cuddles.
post #82 of 128
Ooops! Almost forgot to mention. When giving Leo the pills, are you using a "pill gun?" We always gave our cats medication in pill form with just our hands, but Tuxedo doesn't like pills more than our other kitties, and his teeth are SO big and sharp! The vet gave us a "pill gun" with is just a long thin tube with a plunger and a rubber tip. You sit the pill in the end of the rubber tip, put it in the back of his mouth and push the plunger. Because it's a really soft bendable rubber tip, it can't hurt kitty's throad - and it takes like one second to successfully get the pill down. It saves our fingers and is far less stress on ALL of us, lol!
post #83 of 128
Thread Starter 
Thanks LDG and everyone! I have always thought my Leo was a gorgeous kitty! He is grey and white! (not black)...and I will give him many kisses from all of you!

yeah I am confused about the correct level too....from what I read anemia is only when it is lower than 24....? How is Tuxedo doing?

Leo's pads and nose don't look that much pinker, but the specialist said that is his coloring, and we looked at old photos of him and he was always pale pink...but I am still concerned a little...

Also did Tuxedo have a bump when the needle of the aspirate went? Leo seems to have one only at the shoulder point, not back leg...it is not sensative to the touch, and is not hard bump, I called the specialist and he will call me back in the morning so I could tell him about it..

I give him the pill by hand, my husband helps hold him and I give him the pill..he has been putting up a little bit of a struggle but I think he is getting used to it, the first few times were harder! If it becomes more difficult I will try the pill gun..thanks...

Leo is continuing to do well, but he still can't run or jump, but walks around, purrs when ever I come to see him, and is playing a little bit each time...
I got some really cute pictures of him, I am gonna try to post them tonight!

wish I could figure out that remote linking thing!
post #84 of 128
I'm glad his doing better and glad for him that he has such caring owners

post #85 of 128
Thread Starter 
check out the last 6 pics! click to zoom!

post #86 of 128
Oh Anita! Those are just gorgeous pics of Leo!! I love the one of him on his back being bunny-kitty. And the one in the box...and the one where he's looking up by the window....oh I love all of them! Leo looks SO much brighter and livlier in these pics.
post #87 of 128
Those are all great shots.

Love the one of him on the stairway and the one of him on his back.
post #88 of 128
Why do I get the idea this little guy is feeling more like himself all the time?

Great pics! So glad he's feeling better.
post #89 of 128
Oh, I love Leo's new pics! My favorite is the one of him posing on the stairs!
post #90 of 128
He is so darn cute! I love all the new pics, and I must say, he really looks perky and happy!

Tuxie's acting great - he was playing by himself yesterday, tossing a mouse around, rearing up on his back legs and POUNCING on it, LOL! He terrorized Spooky for a few minutes, and played hide & chase with Flowerbelle. He stood on Gary's tummy when we were trying to get to sleep, and he slept on his sheepskin next to Gary for several hours last night. The not-so-happy news is that his PCV was 28 this time - so it's gone 30, 29, 29, 28. We're having a full-blood work-up done this time to see if there's a problem with his thyroid that's causing his hair not to grow in (although this is uncommon in cats), and we're checking his iron levels.
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