Today, as mentioned in the TT entry, Richie had his lip looked at and the official diagnosis is “collangenalytic granuloma caused by allergy”. In layman’s terms “fat chin”. Which is the same thing as a rodent ulcer, just on the chin. But two weeks ago, if I’d taken him in, he’d have had the rodent ulcer.
Treatment is the same thing that Pancho is on, prednisone. And when I get the pred refilled next time (I’m still working on a bottle I already had, for a cat who’s no longer here), it will be refilled with prednisolone, something that does the same thing but the liver doesn’t have to work as hard to process. I think that’s what he said.
He’s lost a pound, but the vet didn’t seem all that concerned about it.
Next up was Chandler. Chandler’s always had a problem with his nose, runny, snotty, he would get bouts of sneezing, but mostly no problem at all. But last week, before I got up one morning (did you know that cats can tell time? they know when it’s close to 5:45 AM because when I get up, there’s probably between eight and ten cats between my side of the bed and the hallway, just waiting for the morning treat), I heard a cat that sounded suspiciously like a short nosed dog, like a pug or something. Really noisy.
It was Chandler. I watched him as the week went along, listening to his breathing intently. I watched his face and looked at his nose. A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned to Brian that Chand looked a little puffy over his right eye. But it went away. But this breathing thing had me concerned (thinking back to Ciara and the polyp she had). So, when I made Richie’s appointment, I made one for Chandler, too.
I explained all of my observations to the vet and he asked some questions, like did any of the other cats have similar symptoms, does he fight with the other cats, is he eating okay? Everything is good with him, it’s just the breathing thing.
So, the vet holds a thingy to Chandler’s nose to see the air coming out. Then he uses some sort of tool with a light on it to look up Chander’s nostrils. Left one is clear, the right one is not. You can see small polyps in it. Well, the vet said it could be a couple of things, one is something that’s treatable, but will never completely be gone, one could be nasal sarcoma (!!) but he didn’t think it was the cancer because Chandler would be one very sick cat if it was.
If it’s what he thinks it is, it will take a while to treat, and once again, there’s a chance it won’t ever be completely gone, but Chandler can have a decent life with this thing in remission. And treatment is a pill, which used to be really expensive ($10 each), but is a lot more reasonable now than it was five years ago. I got thirty for $17.00. Anyway, the vet wets a Q-tip and sticks it up Chandler’s right nostril. He rubs it around inside and pulled it out. It had a little bit of blood on it and Chandler lets out this huge sneeze. The vet took the Q-tip to another room, where he rubbed it on a slide and looked at it under a microscope. He comes back in. “Come in here, I want you to look at something” he says. I do. He told me what to look for.
Chandler has a fungus. It’s a soil organism that Chandler must have picked up before he entered our backyard. This organism usually doesn’t take hold unless the immune system is stressed. He said he may have gotten it from hunting, sniffing in the dirt and it entered his system that way. Now, you may recall that Chandler was VERY thin when he came to live with us. Thin and unneutered and not a well cat. The official name for what Chandler has is “nasal cryptococcosis”. If left unchecked, it would eventually kill him.
One of the things the doctor had me look at under the slide was a couple of the organisms that were bigger than the other ones he pointed out. He said “see those two with the thing that looks like halos around them? Those “halos” are what prevents the immune system from taking care of them”.
We got home, I got the carriers out of the car, someone stinkered and it was poor Chandler. When I opened his crate, he was gone and I saw that he’d both peed and pooped, which isn’t something I normally see. And he quickly ran out of the house and I have no idea where he is right now. But he’s probably embarrassed and not a little uncomfortable from what was done to his poor little nose. I have one of the pills in a gelcap and as soon as he’s settled back in, I’ll give it to him.
Poor little Chandler bo Bandler.