Steph (beststephi) wrote in arlingtonhouse,

Otto update

Over the past few months, we've noticed Otto had been losing weight, going from obese, approaching about average weight. For a while I attributed this to his not liking, and eating less of, the food he'd been on since the last vet trip, where the vet suggested he was allergic to corn or wheat gluten, common in cat foods. But in the past few weeks, he's been drinking noticeably more and peeing more, and in one particularly vulnerable, non-litter box spot. After trying many remedies, the combination Mav-yelling-orange-on-location seems to be working pretty well (failures include banana peels, which cats allegedly hate, aluminum foil, cat-deterrent spray). So anyway, I was pretty sure this was a sign of diabetes (esp. since he'd been on steroid shots for allergies when he was younger, which the vet transitioned to milder pills as the allergies continued as he aged because steroids can cause diabetes). So I had been primed for signs of Otto developing diabetes for a while now. Plus, we'd noticed some large bald spots, but what was new was that they also looked bloody, which wasn't surprising given his constant licking/biting those spots.

So we took him to the vets last night. Long story short: he has fleas, explaining the bare spots. Vet gave him flea topical cream, which we need to give him monthly (rub the contents of the little tube onto the back of his neck, where he hopefully can't lick it off--but if he does, it's not harmful to him). I bought flea spray and sprayed around the litter area, where, now that I think about it, I have noticed some small-insect activity. If anyone notices anything that might be fleas, the spray is on the floor in front of the television.

They ran a blood test. Not surprisingly, he has high blood sugar, probably indicating diabetes. So we're switching him to canned cat food that is high-protein, low-carb (fortunately, found a website that summarizes this info for commercial cat foods). Tess will get this, too, it being almost impossible without a lot of effort or creativity to control who eats what (suggestions are welcomed, though). They'll get 3 cans per day. Another blood test result was a possible kidney infection, which we're not dealing with for now. The final result, which worries me the most, is elevated calcium levels, which the vet said could indicate lymphoma. I'm afraid to google on this, from his demeanor when he brought this up. But he said it could just be a random fluctuation. We'll take Otto back in a couple weeks for another blood test, where his blood sugar will be lower and everything else will be OK.

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  • Otto follow-up

    Otto's doing better. The bare spots aren't bloody anymore and are starting to fill in. But apparently, the corn and wheat gluten wasn't the (only)…

  • Otto update

    Over the past few months, we've noticed Otto had been losing weight, going from obese, approaching about average weight. For a while I attributed…

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