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anybody have a cat with cardiomyopathy?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
My cat who is eight months old has had fast respiration lately. She came to our house when she was only about four weeks old, and even as a small kitten would wheeze every so often. I thought maybe it was a mild form of asthma. She would make a couple of wheezy noises and be on her way, nothing alarming. I noticed her breathing becoming faster and the wheezing had slightly increased so I took her the vet. He said her heart was extremely accelerated and jumpy. He put her on proponal to stabilize her heart rate. The wheezing has improved , and the vet said her heart rate was better. I notice that she always has faster breathing then the rest of my cats. I asked the vet if it was some kind of cardiomyopathy and he said yes, and that all that can be done is to maintain how she is. No lab tests or x-rays have been done. My vet doesn't think doing a bunch of tests is necessary, he thinks she was born with a heart defect although not a leaky valve or anything like that. The last time I took her to the vet she threw up all the way home and was very ill from all the stress. She is an extremely shy, high strung cat who is only attached to me. I think it's because I was her "mama" for an early age. I've had many cats over the years and she is definately the most "scaredy cat" I have ever had. I do not think I can put her through a bunch of tests(echocardiograms--which I have not been able to even find a place around who will do those kinds of tests for a cat). I don't think her poor heart could take it. Has anyone encountered this and what did you do? Would kitty prozac help calm her nerves and therefore help her heart? Anything holistic that would help? I've tried bachs rescue remedy before with my other cats and I don't know if I think it worked. She takes her medicine twice a day, and she seems happy, and is playful. I feel like I'm not doing enough for her or that there might be something out there that could help her. Sorry this is so long to read, I guess I feel helpless as to what to do for her.
post #2 of 4
Many of us here have had kitties with heart problems.
If you use the search tool in this forum using the word "cardiomyopathy" you will pull up quite a few threads about this frustrating disease.
This link is just one but it contains several other links about his subject.

What ever the reason for you kitties health problems ...
you have come to the right place for support.
Welcome to TCS.
post #3 of 4
I'm sorry you and your sweet kitty are going through such a difficult time right now. I have an almost 2-year-old male cat, Peter, who was diagnosed with mild hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in March. This was after my vet detected a heart murmur on two occasions and xrays showed that his heart was slightly enlarged. I'm surprised your vet doesn't feel xrays or an echocardiogram are necessary if he suspects cardiomyopathy. The echocardiogram is the best way to pinpoint the cause of a cats heart problems and determine the appropriate treament. Your vet should be able to refer to a specialist who can perform the ultrasound. I was reluctant to go ahead with the procedure since Peter was showing no obvious symptoms, not even wheezing, but my vet emphasized how important it is to have the testing done early to begin treatment and attempt to stop the progression of the disease. I'm so glad she recommended the echocardiogram because now Peter has a better chance at a long, happy life. He's taking a beta-blocker daily, along with half a baby aspirin twice a week.

I was worried about putting him through the trauma of the test too, since Peter's a former feral kitten and gets extremely stressed around new people. But, it was noninvasive procedure and they didn't even have to shave his belly. It only took a few minutes and I was able to hold him as they did it. My vet did stress the importance of being sure Peter avoids stress, but didn't mention prozac. I'd consult your vet about it and be sure its not going to counteract with any other medications your cat has to take. I'm not aware of any holisic remedies.

I wish I had more answers for you. My first recommendation would be to get the xrays and the echocardiogram if at all possible. I'm still learning about this disease as time goes on. There's a great online support group that should be able to address your questions and concerns:


Please keep us updated on how your kitty is doing. Both of you will be in my thoughts and prayers.
post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the support. I will be looking for a vet who can do an echocardiogram. Unfortunately I have not been able to locate anywhere close by but I will keep searching. I'm glad to know it's not to stressful of procedure. I will keep you all updated!
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