Tiger has an enlarged Heart

By: Feather3 , 4:32 PM GMT on August 25, 2011

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If any of you are of a mind to, please say a prayer for my Tiger. He is a Bengal cat and is suffering from symptoms of an enlarged heart. A Lasix treatment at the vet seemed to help (albeit, briefly) and he ate a bit of food when he came home. Not much, but some. In the middle of the night he left my bed and was huddled beneath my bed. Later, he came out and could barely meow. He has an appt at the vet soon and is trying to scratch his way out of the carrier, but I won't let him out because he is so hard to catch (I have been ill since Aug 2 and am still kind of weak). Keep Tiger in your prayers if you would?

My Tiger :) (Feather3)
He's getting more handsome by the day...
My Tiger :)
Tiger II (Feather3)
Keeping a wary eye on another cat.....he loves the other neighborhood cats and would love to play with them, but they don't like him...
Tiger II
Tiger (Feather3)
My Bengal Cat who has been with me for about a year now....
Tiger
Slurp! (Feather3)
My Tiger lickin' his chops after eating al fresca morning before last ;)
Slurp!
Tiger (Feather3)
Yes, we adopted him. He's a Bengal Cat and we named him Tiger. :)
Tiger
Purrr-tee (Feather3)
Had to show how she looks. . .was happy to get a few shots of her, as she is simply, beautiful.
Purrr-tee

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12. WunderAlertBot (Admin)
6:04 AM GMT on January 02, 2013
Feather3 has created a new entry.
11. Barefootontherocks
12:12 AM GMT on December 24, 2012
Glad Tiger is well. Thanks for all your great photos this, another, wu year gone by.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Member Since: April 29, 2006 Posts: 156 Comments: 18934
10. redagainPatti
5:24 PM GMT on November 20, 2012
Sorry to hear about the furry babies being sick. Be it the horse or the cat or the dog... they are special part of our life.
Thanks for checking on my blog.. system must had bump last evening... I hope the part of where I paid up for another year connects soon... I HATE those adv boxes all over the place. Have emailed the system and sharied a copy of where I paid with pay-pal... hopefully I reach the top of the line soon and will get taking care of.....
MEANWHILE
YOU have a great week. I am thankful for much in my life and part of it is the family I have found on WU.
update... one just has to sign OUT then back in and things were fixed about my membership..
Member Since: July 10, 2005 Posts: 123 Comments: 1520
9. Feather3
8:01 PM GMT on October 31, 2012
Tiger is fine... it's Silver who needs help. Please check the Silver Blog. Sorry for any confusion. LOL
Member Since: December 12, 2003 Posts: 72 Comments: 2952
8. whitewabit (Mod)
7:43 PM GMT on October 31, 2012
Your Tiger looks like our Misty whom we lost, after 15 years of giving us great joy this last year !!

Hope Tiger recovers fully and has a long life ahead ..
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 365 Comments: 31729
7. sandiquiz
8:30 AM GMT on October 31, 2012
Feather,

I have just read your entry #5 and my heart goes out to you..... It is so well written I was there with you.

As there has been no update since August last year, how are things now?

I took two British Blue kittens into my home thirteen years ago. They were named Blue and Peter by the little girl next door, after the name of a Children's TV show.
Unbeknown to me, both had inherited heart murmurs. Peter died at just two years old but Blue is still going strong. Funnily enough, he never made a sound, no purrs or meows at all, we thought he was totally silent, whereas Peter was so voluble. But after Peter died he began to squeak, then a very quiet purr, and now he is the most noisy boy, shouting at me if I don't open the door, feed him, change his water, etc !!

Hope all is well :-)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 297 Comments: 26555
6. Feather3
11:00 PM GMT on August 29, 2011
back from the vet: Tiger has a very mild case of Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. We are treating with a very low dose of Diltiazem HCL for a week to see how he does. If his blood pressure goes way down and he gets loopy from the medication, then we will have to try something else. More later. Hugs all around and God bless you all.
Member Since: December 12, 2003 Posts: 72 Comments: 2952
5. Feather3
3:01 PM GMT on August 28, 2011
UPDATE: In December of 2009, a very strange and beautifully exotic looking cat came to visit my friend and neighbor. After a few days, I noticed too, and she told me 'Feather, that cat is WEIRD. I think it's an Oci-cat and it keeps *chasing* my cats! It seems aggressive, what are we going to do?' I thought about it and said, let me take some photos and we can put up some FOUND CAT posters. So that's what I did; local veterinarians did not recognize the cat....local feed and pet stores didn't either. After a while, when no one responded, we took him to one of the vet's for a micro-chip scan. A full body scan and $150.00 or so later, I thought, 'well, what the heck, I will post on some Found Cat site online and go from there'. I had a lady from the bay area of northern CA contact me. She is a breeder of Savannah Cats....I had looked at photos of some of the smaller varieties and thought; that looks just like this 'Baby Girl' (that was what I was calling my cat...not realizing {DUH moment here} that 'she' was a he)...the woman said this cat looked like a BENGAL CAT, so I changed all the posters, called all the veterinarians, feedstores and pet stores and told them. When I mentioned to a woman whom I used to work with at our local Humane Society that I had found this cat, she suggested I contact a local breeder. I thought "THAT'S RIGHT! My DAUGHTER used to work for this breeder, how could I have forgotten THAT?!" So I called my daughter, who now lives in the bay area and she gave me her former boss' name and number and voila....there was this breeder who may have known this 'stray'. Long story short: several people later who had lost their Bengals, and no one claimed this one.

So, I decided to keep him. Another trip to the vet for shots, Feline Leukemia test (he was clean, so he was vaccinated against that) and a flea treatment.....then came the hunt for exactly the CORRECT food to feed him. Since I had to research, I discovered a few things that he actually liked. I bought him toys, a five foot high cat tree and soft little balls to chase. He loved to run, jump, chase and paw things. One of the things I had to do early on was teach him *not* to go after my birds. I had seven birds at that time and at night he would try to get into their cages, completely stressing them out. I would come out, sternly say "NO BIRDS" and stomp my foot. After a few repeats, he actually GOT it. Smart cat! (I did have to bungy-cord and clothespin the cages down and closed, however *sheepish grin* Taking NO chances with such a hunter in the house).

When a neighbor across the street was forced by the city to tear down an old wood shed (fire hazard), there were a huge family of native wood rats nesting inside. Tiger, as we came to finally call him, would go out early every morning and one day brought a rat home that was almost as huge as he was (!). He had cleaned out that wood shed area immediately following the tear-down.

What my neighbor had interpreted as aggression on Tiger's part, was merely the sweet demeanor of a Bengal's greeting. You know the drill: 'MEOW, MEOW,' as they rush up to another cat for a head butt or side-rub and then the smelling of the fannies ensues. So reminiscent of a dog; I think that freaked out the other cats; they simply were not used to this long-legged, low to the ground prowling-looking thing.

We developed a pretty close relationship he and I. And a routine to match. He would sleep with me at night, then early in the morning, go out to romp and play and whatever else it was he did all day. Several times he would disappear for a day or two (which really got me worried). I couldn't NOT let him out; maybe he would find his owners, or maybe he had friends somewhere that I did not know about. Besides, he TORE the screens out of my windows, so I had to do something. I cannot install a cat door....and it gets cool here on the northern CA coast....so, here we are, a year and a half later and this past Wednesday he turned up suddenly ill.

He was lethargic, refused food, and felt COLD to the touch (except his ears, which felt HOT, so I thought FEVER). One of the first things I thought was he had been poisoned, or had a virus or other type of infection...then I started putting his symptoms in GOOGLE and got HCM and recalled that I had read about that in Bengals and was scared. I called the vet. They got him an appt that very afternoon, God bless them.

X-ray of the chest revealed a mildly enlarged heart with little lumps on it (scare me, OK, just scare me! Sheesh!) His temperature was a little bit above normal and his heart rate was all over the place....they gave him a Lasix injection and sent us on our way. He seemed to improve but within a half an hour was back to acting very strangely. I thought the Lasix was making him loopy, but knew it was just a carry over from previously; he probably had an adrenaline rush from the stress of being put into a crate after 45 minutes of trying to CATCH him, then the trip to the vet, the exam and the needle, oh, the scary old freaking needle....no wonder. He vomited up bile with a single blade of grass when offered his regular food.

Thursday arrived with still no improvement. I'd had a followup scheduled for Friday, but called the vet anyway and in we went. This time an oral quarter tablet of Diltiazem HCL was given, along with an antibiotic (Convenia, IM inj) was given 'just to be on the safe side' and SQ fluids (the Lasix or lack of food and water began to make him dehydrated). No Lasix this time.

I was unsuccessful at administering his prescription of Diltiazem Thursday night. *sigh* Me, who is used to medicating animals and have done so successfully so many times over the years, just could not succeed in getting a quarter of a tiny tablet to begin with, down Tiger's throat; he scooped it out weakly with his tongue and spit it out on the bed.

No improvement either and he went downhill that night, scaring me into thinking the worst was coming.

Friday morning dawned and I had some duties at our local church as a soup kitchen director and I cannot shirk those, so off I went to cook and serve. (We ended up with 94 people served that day). He walked very slowly around the apartment, silently meowing. He could no longer vocalize, he was so weak. By the time I had to leave, he was getting a wee bit of sound out, but ran and hid under the bed when he thought I was trying to grab him - the dreaded carrier sits out, waiting for the next trip.....

Well, I am personally just getting over being sick. My daughter was married at the end of July and my mother and I stayed in a hotel down in Pacifica, CA (south of San Francisco in case you are still reading and didn't know)...and the last morning we were there, we stood in line for the Continental Breakfast and a man in front of me SNEEZED all over the breakfast plates and food and I was not thinking and grabbed one of those plates. It did not even occur to me that my own immune system might be compromised from having been taking antibiotics myself for various abcessed teeth...sheesh. Well, by August 2nd I was starting to get pretty sick. I have just NOW started feeling better and then my cat gets sick.

Friday afternoon another trip to the vet...another round of SQ fluids and another partial tablet of the Diltiazem HCL was administered rather deftly and with a lot of 'I am better than you' attitude from the vet. I very calmly told her that I had vet tech experience and that it was simply that 'he is my baby' that I had trouble and if you had seen him last night, and he was *your* baby.....blah blah blah. She stopped with the attitude, though ;)

He passed Friday night at the foot of my bed, covered with a thick towel to keep him warm. He seemed soo darned cold.....I thought for sure he would be dead by morning, he was so listless and sad looking. But he started to clean his fur. A hopeful sign, I grasped for it in my heart and held on tight, for however briefly that cleaning session lasted. It was the first time he felt interested enough to engage in it, but it seemed *painful* to him.

Saturday morning arrived and he seemed a bit more active, but could barely vocalize....more of Friday morning's whisper meows....

I started feeding him watered down a/d critical care food with a syringe and he kept all of it down (1 cc at a time, for a total of four times)

It had been suggested that I get a lactated ringer for SQ fluids. Then my daughter, who works for a veterinarian down in the bay area, at the prompting of a comment from a Face Book friend ('are there anti nausea meds for cats') suggested PEPCID.

I got some.

Another friend and the local breeder of Bengals suggested I cook some plain chicken and offer that.

6 PM arrives. My neighbor came home from work and together, she and I administered the SQ fluids and while we had a hold of Tiger, I grabbed a syringe, added another cc of the a/d watered down mixture, quartered a tablet of the Pepcid and gave it to him. He swallowed it.

I cooked up some grilled chicken strips that were in the freezer. I tore it into small pieces and put it under the bed where he was hiding.

An hour later, I went in to check on him; he had CLEANED THE PLATE. It was the first time in FOUR DAYS that he actually ATE on his own. Then he started purring again! Then he started cleaning his fur with the vigorous stroked I was used to. It was getting late in the day when I realized I had not eaten much so cooked up some Tilapia for myself.

Tiger JUMPED onto the bed when he smelled it and we ended up sharing my dinner together, as was our usual habit when I had Tilapia, albacore or chicken.....I gave him another half tablet of Pepcid with some cream cheese....he then curled up in his usual spot after another round of cleaning himself and went to sleep.

4:30 AM: Face Book entry: early Sunday and guess who is back to his normal self? Egads! Let's pull sweaters down OFF the shelf, shall we? Or how about beg for his FAVORITE food? After everything he has been through I am so tempted to let him out....but will wait ONE MORE DAY just to be sure. Tiger, you are a special kitty :)

Oh yeah, and let's pull papers off the desk, books off the shelf and terrorize the birds.....and let us stand at the door a MEOW, LOUDLY. Maybe THAT will get her to let me out? It always worked BEFORE! hehehehehe

I guess you can tell how relieved I am.....tomorrow he is supposed to go to the vet for an ultrasound. It is so expensive and I barely have enough money to cover it, but just to be sure he doesn't have HCM, that he instead had some WEIRD STOMACH BUG that the Pepcid helped, but that enlarged heart and the lumps on it in the x ray have me wondering.......
Member Since: December 12, 2003 Posts: 72 Comments: 2952
4. Lovethetropics
11:11 PM GMT on August 26, 2011
Feather, I love your pictures since I first saw them on 2005, so sorry your Tiger is sick, praying for him already.
Hugs!
Member Since: August 18, 2005 Posts: 236 Comments: 11302
3. Feather3
10:47 PM GMT on August 26, 2011
back from the vet. Tiger's heart rate has decreased to almost normal, which is exactly what we wanted..the meds are starting to do the trick in slowing his symptoms down, but he still refuses food (at the moment). He is begging so bad to go out, but I want to wait until after his ultrasound on Monday to be sure the meds are really working. Results from that will come in Tues. KEEP PRAYING and TY!
Member Since: December 12, 2003 Posts: 72 Comments: 2952
2. Feather3
6:11 PM GMT on August 25, 2011
Quoting sandiquiz:
Hi Feather,
It sounds as though both of you need to be in our prayers....
Hope all goes well at the vets later today.

Good luck


OK, back from the vet. Tiger was given 100cc lactated ringers for dehydration, a broad-spectrum antibiotic injection (just in case) and a new medication for his heart. A definitive diagnosis would require an ultrasonic ekg, but there wasn't a tech there who could do it properly. (Davis is closest card. spec) So we are treating this as if it were HCM, which is what I have suspected all along (Bengals are genetically predisposed; there are lumps on his heart which are usually indicative)......he is sitting near the front door; he wants to go out so bad, but doc says NO. HCM stands for Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, in case anyone was wondering....

he has been laying under the bed for most of today. He seemed a bit more perked up so I dribbled water against his lips and he wiped it clean with his tongue. So the going is slow. There is no cure for HCM; treatment is mainly aimed at calming the symptoms. The lasix has been set aside for a different medication that is usually prescribed for high blood pressure and can aid the heart in pumping slower, but more effectively so that the blood flow to vital organs is more efficient.
Member Since: December 12, 2003 Posts: 72 Comments: 2952
1. sandiquiz
4:46 PM GMT on August 25, 2011
Hi Feather,
It sounds as though both of you need to be in our prayers....
Hope all goes well at the vets later today.

Good luck
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 297 Comments: 26555

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Loving this place immensely; seeing photos from all over the world gives me great joy. I love Wunderground and am very happy to be here! Thanks to all

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