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Much Needed Help....

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone...
I came here at the advice of a friend, and because I need help with my cat, Dusty, very badly. Read on, and try not to cry...

Nine months ago, my cat, Dusty, who was 11 at the time, got into SOMETHING. I have no idea what, and this is all heresay, but from what I understand, he was last seen playing with the wooden end from a stick of incense. A week later, my mother found him under the basement stairs, cold and supposedly partially paralized, and very very sick. Now, I was away in college, and I don't know what all went on, but I was told my mother called the vet, and she got some medicine, and the cat was on an IV.(thats important). I panicked, and I went into a deep depression for months.

I came home from college for Christmas break, and I found my cat a lot thinner, but seemingly ok. My mother showed me the medicine she used on him, all the while extolling how she "saved him". The medicine turned out to be a vitamin paste, and hairball medicine, both available at the local pet store. I also find out that the "IV" was a large EYEDROPPER that she used to give him baby food.(it gets better) I also find out that the cat was NEVER taken to the vet. NEVER!

It is now June, and I'm home from college for the summer. I spent my paycheck on Hills Science Diet food for Senior cats, and am following the directions on the bag.Dusty likes it, and its better for him than the cheap generic Weis grocery store brand my mother was feeding him. He seems more alert, and he's active as ever, walking across my head to wake me up in the morning, and jumping up on the bathroom counter to drink out of the sink.

Anyway, I want to take my kitty to the vet, but alas, I am virtually unemployed, and the vets here in my area are very expensive. If anyone can
A- give me advice as to what happened with my cat
B-recommend a vet in this area who is cheap, yet good
I would greatly appreciate it

See, I dont know exactly what happened to Dusty, because my mom has a slight mental problem, and exaggerates greatly, and is also very uneducated, and often gets things wrong, for lack of the vocabulary to express what she means.

Please, help me and my Duster-cat!

Thanks for your time, sorry so long...

post #2 of 9
A couple of questions? Is Dusty eating okay? Eliminating normally, drinking lots of water? What color are his gums, this is always important in determining a cat's overall health. They should be pink and happy, not pale and white splotched. If this happened 9 months ago, then if anything bad was going to happen such as toxics from the oil leaking into vital organs, it would of already have done the damage but I am guessing as to that being what MIGHT have happened.

You don't say where you are at but some vets have what they call hardship cases and you can call and ask them about that. What that means is because of financial constraints they have a kitty so to speak of money donated by concerned animal lovers BUT usually these are reserved for extreme illnesses or something that can be used as a teaching tool for younger vet students, of which I do not think Dusty qualifies for. My vet takes payments, I am always owing him money and he just takes post-dated checks and we go from there.

I would take the kitty get and get a blood panel drawn at least, that will show anything way off kilter.If you are trying to plump kitty up, you can try adding cod liver oil to his dry food, just a little bit at a time, or use nuti-yeast and sprinkle small amounts on his wet food. Good luck, I hope you take him in just for your own peace of mind.
post #3 of 9
Hi! I read your post & I'm a little confused. If Dusty had something seriously wrong with him 11 months ago from (and I guess you implied this)eating the wooden end of an incense stick, I don't think he would have made it this long. You said he was active and eating so I would think he was ok. Maybe you could take him for a check up to be sure.Does Dusty have regular vet visits for preventative care?? The vet would probably only charge you for an office visit & maybe for an exam but I would think you could call & ask.
Now this may sound a little harsh but maybe your Mom isn't the best person to care for Dusty.You said you were 21 so I am wondering if you still live in a dorm or if you have some off campus housing maybe you can keep Dusty with you. Just a thought.
I dont know how helpful this was but I do think if Dusty is eating and is active, then he sadly, had to work out whatever happened to him on his own.
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
his gums are ok, well, hes lost a few teeth, but their not too bad. His elimiations are fine, but for a new twist...he won't defecate in the litter box. We've tried 2 litter boxes, pet repellent spray, etc. So, right now,we have newspaper around the litter boxes, and he goes on that. He urinates just fine though, in the litter. I clean them often too. But its RIGHT OUTSIDE the litter box. And he only started doing this since he was sick! Go figure! So, what else do I do to get him back to his normal habits?

post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
yeah, I know my mom is not the best person to take care of my kitty.But, I live in a dorm, unfortuntly. I will be moving out after I graduate, in May of 2003, and I am taking Dusty with me...I plan on getting him to a vet for blood work, at the very least, but vets are so expensive...any suggestions are welcome. Right now, Dusty's health has taken precedence over my credit card bills!

post #6 of 9
Have you moved the litter boxes? Are you using his regular litter or has that changed? If all the variables are the same as before and nothing has changed I think a check-up is needed. Have you call the ASPCA maybe they can help or suggest someone.
post #7 of 9
As far as Dusty going outside of the litterbox, this is pretty common when cats get sick. They can't tell you what is wrong, so they show it in their own way. He may have just gotten in the habit when he was sick and decided it was OK to keep doing it.

Please let us know how the vet visit turns out. I don't know where you live, but call around and find out if there is a low-income vet clinic you could take him to. Perhaps there is a vet school in your area. They generally charge less because they are using your animal as a teaching tool, but that doesn't mean they get any less care. (Actually, sometimes they get better care since vet schools are up on the latest technology and methods.)
post #8 of 9
I agree with the person who said your cat wouldn't have lived this long if the incense stick he possibly ate the end off was seriously toxic.

You said your cat has lost a few teeth. Is it possible his remaining teeth are loose or causing him some pain? I am just wondering if the cheap generic food your mom was feeding your cat was really hard and difficult for him to chew and digest. If you cat has been having problems eating this would explain why he has gotten thinner. Possibly the cat will regain some of the lost weight on the Hills Science Diet for Seniors.

Could you possibly borrow some money from another relative to pay for a visit to the vet?
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much for your help, everyone...I just got a new job today, and so its only a matter of time before I get paid,and can take Dusty to the vet. Sadly, I don't have anyplace I can keep him while I'm up as school, no one I trust that is...my relatives are all very similar to my mother.

About the litter question, my mother changed the brand while I was away, and I honestly forget what it used to be...I bought a bag of Fresh Step, and it seems to be working ok...I'll keep everyone posted about what happens to my "old man". Thank you all, so very much!

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