Saturday, November 22, 2014

The Colony..and...Reprieve for Miss D

I agreed to trap another Lebanon colony a couple weeks back.  Nice couple.  Husband is the catman of the couple.  25+ cats in the colony, that started with a couple of strays they fed starting not quite two years ago.  And now......Now there are close to 30 cats.

It's a happy colony and the cats look healthy.  Most are black tux or black, makes it hard to figure numbers.  I left them a drop trap and live trap set to feed under and in, which they did, and today I began the trapping, giving myself a couple of days, since I don't really know numbers.  I have reservations for this couple's cats for Monday and Tuesday at the FCCO.  21 for Monday and 6 more for Tuesday is all I could get.  But 27 fixed will sure cut into it and we'll nab the others, when reservations can be had.

I took these photos when I first went to check out the colony and leave the traps.

I didn't catch this chocolate point, or the lilac point in the photo above the chocolate point. Not yet.

I trapped 24 of the cats today.  I have 15 of them set up in cages, all nice and cozy.  The rest I trapped later this evening.  I have one more cage.   If I catch more, then these latest catches will go first to be fixed on Monday.  A Portland group offered to over night recuperate them up there, so I could drop off and come home, and not spend the day in my car along some curb freezing.
I caught three in this trap, two black tuxes and a chocolate point kitten.
Black teen with tiny white chest spot

All black teen

Black kitten with tiny white chest spot
I caught two grays, this being the first caught, has white chest spot.
This black teen looks all boy
Black tux adult

Black tux kitten

Black tux tweeny
The chocolate pt Siamese kitten again, along with one of the two black tuxes I caught with the Siamese.

Very large black tux

Black tux kitten

One of the kittens climbed the pole after my line to play with.
I have not yet photographed the six I caught after first catching the 18.  But they include a second gray and a very large classic torti.  The other four are black tuxes.  The majority of the cats out there are black tuxes, with a few all blacks, then four or so Siamese, not sure really how many Siamese there are.  I have caught only the one Siamese kitten.  I have seen a teenage chocolate point and a Lilac Point.  I'm told there are more than that.  I'm told there is a muted torti too, and there are at least three more black tuxes.  I don't know if there are more grays beyond the two I caught.

I haven't decided if I'll trap more than three tomorrow.  Three tops me out at what the FCCO can fix Monday and Tuesday.  I should stop at three more I know.  Could be some time before the FCCO has more space.

Ok, so I will stop at three more.  It makes sense and it doesn't make sense to trap more than can be fixed in the next couple of days.   Be dumb of me.

Miss Daisy got a reprieve.  The vet had sent her blood to a lab that would examine her excessive blood lymphocyte population to see if they were cancerous or infection lymphocytes and they turned out to be the latter.  Infection NOT cancer!!!  The news made me whoop and holler and jump around and forget I have vertigo.  I didn't care I ended up on the floor, where I continued whooping and hollering.

I ran up before I started trapping, after the vet called me, to the clinic to get clavimox.  On the phone, the vet, who is not even in Oregon right now, said she was sure glad she sent out that test, to have the lymphocytes examined by experts, so we'd know that much.   She sounded happy. I know I was happy.

Yup, infection, but what kind?  Back to that.  Does she have giardia, coccidia, or even haemobartonella?   Don't know.  Back to that, not knowing, but I know she hasn't got lymphoma!!  I know that!!!  I will find a clinic with a giardia snap test, to check for that.  If need be, she'll do the albon metro combo for awhile, along with probiotics.  But first, the clavimox.  And I ordered the t/d Hills food, that long ago, helped those wretched kittens overcome diarrhea.  That will come on Tuesday or Wednesday, they said.

I went all out to try to help Miss Daisy, to find out for sure once and for all, what is going on.  I know what it isn't going on now, but still not sure what is.  Oh well, one step done.  She hasn't got cancer.  She could have an inflamed small or large intestine, or the oft suspected coccidia or giardia, but those two culprits are very difficult to find in poo.  I hope the clavimox helps because otherwise, I'm going to look like I went through berry vines until we do figure it all out, getting taken down by Miss D's daggers while I give her fluids.

Worth it, in my opinion.  Definitely.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Blessed D

I am preparing myself.

Miss D spent the entire day at the vet, who, with some detective work and the right tests seems to have narrowed down what might be ailing her.  She believes it will be digestive lymphoma, but the other possible culprit---bacterial enteritis.

She ordered the blood tests done 8 months ago, from the other vet, and those did show high lymphocytes, low red blood cells, but I was not told.  Maybe they considered the numbers low normal.  This year, however, her packed red cell count was just 19, and she said if she hydrated Miss D, it would have brought it down to probably 14. Normal is 45.  She's anemic.  She also has high lymphocytes.

Her X-rays were perfect, the vet said. Otherwise, her bloodwork is perfect, she said.  She retested her for FIV/Felk and she's negative for both.  The stool sample I took, total liquid diarrhea---negative for parasites and bacteria.

She weighs 5.5 lbs, so she's not lost too much weight. She's always hovered around 6 to 6.5 lbs.

But she was badly dehydrated, from her latest severe diarrheal episode.  The vet sent in a test to a lab, will have results tomorrow, something about the lymphocytes shape, to see if lymphoma is likely.  It is very difficult to diagnose and mimics other bowel inflammations to boot, making it even harder.

I read about lymphomas today, some of them.  Some can be traced to a single abnormal cell because after that, all the lymphocytes are descendants of that one cell and will be its clone.  Cats can become anemic quickly because they cycle red blood cells through much faster than other animals.  I read that too.

The numbers of lymphomas in cats are decreasing because there are fewer and fewer cases of FIV and Felk, which can cause lymphomas, in places other than the digestive tract.  Most digestive tract lymphomas in cats are not related to being positive for FIV or Felk.  Miss Daisy is negative for those diseases.

They were going to keep her overnight, but in the end, I called and said I wanted to bring her home.  They said "Come get her."  So I rushed up, barely arriving before they closed.  The vet won't be in tomorrow anyhow, turns out, so its just as well I got her this evening.  A huge windstorm blew up in the meantime, as temperatures skyrocket into the mid fifties.  The wind buffeted my car back and forth on the road and I watched ahead the fields and trees, in case something came flying towards the road that might hit my car.

I made it and I'm home. Miss Daisy is still unsteady and wobbly from the anesthesia.  She got pumped full of fluids too.   They tried to examine her without putting her under but it took only moments for her to turn into the cat from hell.  So they had to "take her down a notch" as the vet put it.

For the day there, the anesthesia, all those tests she got, the bill was under $300.  I was very very grateful, number one, that they worked her in and are determined to get to the bottom of her health issues, but number two, for the affordable price.   It won't destroy me for a year, to help Miss D.  Now that's a kind clinic.

For whatever time I have left to enjoy and love my beloved Miss Daisy I am grateful.

I also read more about vertigo since mine is still coming and going.  You get positional vertigo when the little tiny crystals that are supposed to be in one part of your inner ear, get dislodged into the semi circular canals.  Until those settle back into place where they belong, the vertigo will continue.  The point of the Canalith Repositioning Procedure is to get those tiny particles back to the proper part of the inner ear, then let them settle, by keeping the ear affected above shoulder level for 24 hours.  The procedure often works, but often doesn't, and needs repeated often.  I've done it to myself a few times here, but not done it properly and not afterwards kept my affected ear above shoulder level for 24 hours.  That's probably key to it working.

I didn't know until I read the Mayo clinic site about Vertigo that you can get it from a minor blow to the head.  But it seemed a little coincidental that I knocked my head hard on the corner of a shelf in the Exclusion Room the night before the day I woke with vertigo.  Depending on your position and where you hit your head, the blow can dislodge the crystals in the inner ear and start you on an adventure in vertigo land.

Because I've hit my head often on that particular protruding shelf corner and because it might have caused the vertigo I'm suffering now, in revenge, I brought in the jigsaw and took the corner off yesterday.  Felt good!

The usual vertigo lasts until the crystals find their way home in your inner ear.  Until that glorious day, I will expect to have bouts of topsy turvy when I lay down, stand up or move too quickly.  I will be extra slow moving when I get up from sitting or laying, to reduce the liklihood of a fall.

But thankfully, the disruptions are usually very brief, even so.  Life goes on.

I'm going to designate a Miss Daisy Day, in honor of my beloved D.   On that day, as long as I shall live, I will celebrate all she has come to mean to me.  Love.  Joy.  Happiness.  Friendship.  Optimism.  Silliness.
Miss D with rescued kitten Bambam

Miss D with rescued teen Calamity

Miss D with Slurpy and rescued kitten Grumbly Rumby

Miss D in the hanging basket.  Despite her deafness and older age, Miss D is always ALWAYS the first to try anything new.  Like the cat wheel.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Soloman Gets His Dental

Thank you to everyone who has donated on the current fundraiser, which you can see at the top of the page on the right sidebar, for the Six Cat Dentals.  Soloman became the first of those six to get his teeth cleaned.

Soloman is 8 years old and a kind hearted male kitty who once went to a home in Eugene with a woman who claimed great experience with former feral cats.  Well, she told me to come get him within a day or two or three.  I can't remember how fast it was she bounced him back, since it's been many years now.

I took him in with three others after Safehaven asked me to trap cats to be fixed around the apartment complex of an employee's relative.  I was horrified at the negligence and neglect and general laziness of the people there, most half my age or younger.

I had to crawl over two guys playing video games on one TV while watching ball games on another with live traps.  They were not going to move to help.  The young woman there was pregnant with yet another child and the only person in the household who worked.  The young man, 19, bragged he'd already fathered five kids.  I told him he wasn't a father, that fathers support their kids, they don't just impregnate then suck off the taxpayers and unwed struggling mother to be (his m.o.).  Mr. Lazy then faked a back problem, wanting sympathy when he finally rose to carry one cat in trap to my car, behind me, carrying two, and I was done with his patheticness and told him "can't you just go hang at the 7-11 til I"m done, to get out of the way?"

He had the gall to ask if I'd loan him a five, that he was good for it.   I think you know what I told him.

This level of worthlessness extended throughout the complex with a couple of exceptions.  There are always a couple exceptions, people trying hard to be good people in the midst of all this awfulness.  Many cats had open wounds from being shot.  Some had pellet holes through their ears.  So I got them all fixed and the four teens stayed with me.  I couldn't live with myself if I'd taken them back there.  I wish I'd never seen how any of those cats had to live, in that awful place, with such lazy heartless people, for the most part, that they had to depend on, for food.

So that's how Soloman came to be here.  His sister, Panda, is also still here.  Today he went off and had his teeth cleaned and one extraction.  He was updated on his rabies vaccine and also, got Profender applied for round and tapeworms.  

Here's my boy Soloman:

In the summer, I cut his coat, but in the winter, I let him have it.   His nails need trimmed often and I have to find them amongst all his toe hair to trim.   He's very shy by nature, being feral born, in Lebanon.  He loves kittens and the other cats, however, and because he is so good natured, he has many friends here.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Viktor Reminder---He Still Waits for a Home

Adorable wonderful Viktor is still waiting on a home over at Heartland.  Heartland Humane in Corvallis is overloaded right now in cats. Please Please go adopt Viktor!  He wants indoor only loving playful home!

Friday, November 14, 2014


I had my yearly doctor visit today.  I made the appointment ten days ago and just happened to awaken this morning with vertigo.

Vertigo is not dizziness, in case you've never experienced it.

Vertigo vanishes reality.  The world goes topsy turvy.  It hit this morning when I was just up and slammed me into the door before I realized what was going on.   I quickly dropped to the ground.  Everything was spinning.

It did not deter my desire for morning coffee.  So I crawled to the kitchen, waited for 10 minutes til the worst subsided, then got up.  Very very slowly.

It's positional my vertigo, something to do with crystals or little stones in the inner ear out of place.   Related in my case to my neck nerve inflammation issues, from that beating of long ago, allergies and dehydration.  The perfect storm had hit me with all the raking and leaf removal I've done lately inflaming my neck.  Dry winter air inside increases allergies and I'd left the heat on last night and the place was 70 degrees in the morning.  This kind of heat at night dehydrates me.

I like to sleep cold.

A friend agreed to take me to the doctor's appointment, since I didn't want to miss it and have to wait out getting another and I couldn't drive with vertigo.  Everything was fine until I got onto the exam table, tilted back, and boom, I was flat out with eyes closed to negate the swirling spinning world, a new form of reality to contemplate if you can keep your latest meal down as you do.  You'd think gravity would be enough for proper orientation on earth.   One inner ear out of whack and I start wondering about the nature of the universe.  Is up really down, is anything real?

Then I decided "ok, its because we have inner ears that I'm even thinking reality begins in the inner ear.  No inner ears, and I'd know up from down through gravity and wouldn't suffer topsy turvy when my facial and ear nerves are inflamed."  

I stop it by drinking lots of water, rest, and taking an allergy pill and an Aleve.  Also, I put an ice pack behind my ear.  That's where the nerves that serve the face come out of the skull and it can help to freeze out those inflamed nerves.  It can help a lot.

My doctor said she had it but it lasted a week.  Mine usually lasts off and on a day or two.  She thought she could survive at work, but found out she couldn't because she had to hang onto walls to stay upright.  The blood draw tech also said she gets it now and then.  Seems common enough.

Didn't stop me from going out for lunch after the appointment with my friend.  That was fun!  

Vertigo.   Not the movie.  The inner ear issue.

If you've never experienced vertigo, you've never really lived.  Bwah ha ha ha.


Thursday, November 13, 2014

Shot up Billy

Almost a year ago now, I took three cats from a Lebanon neighborhood to a Portland rescue, to reduce the load on a Lebanon woman feeding the neighborhood abandons, which in that area, are many.  Two of the three got homes rather quickly, but the 3rd, newly named Bronco Billy, (was Smokey before) had an enlarged nose.  I had seen his nose up in Lebanon and said "What is wrong with him?"   But no one else had noticed his nose was grossly enlarged.

So off he went with the other two and I wish I could have gotten more cats out of that neighborhood to safety.  

Bronco Billy was diagnosed with a rather rare fungal infection.  The spores of this fungus are not airborne.  Cats catch it through direct contact with bird droppings, often pigeon droppings, although there are other carriers.

So ever since then he has been on anti fungal medication.  His nose is still enlarged and probably always will be.  He went in for a dental this week.  But he couldn't breath under anesthesia, crashed and his oxygen levels went way down.  Finally, after an hours worth of intervention, the clinic got him back to breathing on his own again.  They X-rayed him to try to understand why his oxygen levels had dropped under anesthesia.  And this is what they found:

See that light spot, under the rib cage on the left of the Xray?  That's a pellet that has collapsed one lung.  He'll never be able to go under anesthesia and this is why he has less energy than other cats his age.  He also has BB's lodged in tissue in his jaw.  This is why I tried so hard to get cats out of that Lebanon neighborhood.  People are mean to cats there.    He was probably shot after he was neutered or he would not have survived going under for his neuter.

Bronco Billy is still with ARCF of Portland.  That's Animal Rescue and Care Fund.  THANK YOU ARCF for helping Bronco Billy out and giving him such good care.

Here's their facebook page.

If you're on facebook, go to their page, "like" their page, or even consider donating in the name of Bronco Billy.  Thanks.

Winter Blah Freezing Rain

My bush, sagging from ice.
 Freezing rain is right now hitting my street.   I hate freezing rain.  Turns roads into skating rinks and brings down trees and power lines.  My roof is sound, held up to 15 inches of snow last February.  I have no reason to worry.

Yesterday I climbed up on the roof and slid around the edge on my butt, cleaning out the gutters of leaves, after I heard there could be freezing rain, which, if there is water or leaves in the gutter, creates too much weight on them and they sag or fall off.   So I got that taken care of and glad of it.

And my maple at least has no leaves now, so it will be less burdened than other maples on the block that do still have leaves, with ice cling weight.

The neighbors roof is covered in a sheet of ice!  It's hard to see it in this photo but you can see it.  I might add more photos later.