Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Dude... Where's My Fur?

"It is foolish to tear out one's hair in grief, as though sorrow would be made less by baldness."


LOL. I mentioned in an entry last week, that Elvis has been pulling his hair out. Needless to say, it was a long weekend. We had no clue why he was doing this. I looked on the Internet for possible reasons, among them was that he was perhaps sensitive to the chemotherapy drug, Doxorubicin, the first does of which he got just last Tuesday. In humans, it causes body hair to fall out, and it causes skin irritation, and can be some pretty nasty stuff. In felines, it has a lot less side effects, but it can also cause the skin to become itchy and hot. The thought of my kitty possibly having to live with this side effect hurt my feelings like you wouldn't believe. Just when I think I love this guy to the limit of human love, I find myself ever deeper. I love him more then anything. So, I have been more then a little stressed over the possibilities. Fortunately, Elvis had an appointment with Dr. B today, and instead of hearing the worst, I got some really good news. Happy news.

Elvis isn't pulling his fur our because of the chemo, he is pulling his hair out because of an aggressive case of fleas. A few weeks ago, when Elvis had visited the doctor for his first dose of steroids, Dr. B's nurse, Mary, gave Elvis a dose of Advantage, along with his medication. We thought we were good to go, but unfortunately, the oil glands in his back, which help distribute the Advantage, are not working properly, probably due to the cancer. As a result, Elvis didn't get anywhere near the full effect of Advantage, and he had a nice collection of fleas eating at his lower back. He has never had a flea problem before, so for the first time in his 11 years, he was being irritated to a monumental degree. Of course he started pulling his hair out! It would be like someone suddenly threw itching powder all over me! I totally understood! Eureka... problem solved!

Elvis got a nice dose of Advantage, and a shot of antihistamine, and now we have a happy, content kitty once again. I need to make a stop later today to pick up a flea comb, to add to our grooming sessions, but we have fun with grooming, so I know he will appreciate a little added time and effort. Elvis has always been so good about such things, tilting his ears so I can clean them out with a Q-tip, sitting very still for toenail maintenance, and keeping his mouth wide open for toothbrush time. I should probably do an entry about our sessions with physical appearance. LOL. He's is such a cool cat, I hold the brush, and tell him to "brush your face," and he rubs both sides of his nose against the brush. He is so suave. LOL. What a looker! And guess what the best news of all was today... look at his nose. No blood. The chemotherapy is working! :)

That's my boy! :)

Elvis is happily playing with his new catnip mouse! I think I will take a nap now!


May 20th, 2008


Suzanne R said...

I'm so glad for your and Elvis's good news all around today! I can't believe how well-behaved he is when you groom him. What a precious kitty he is! My cats send happy purrs and I send hugs to him and to you.

Jama said...

That's an adorable cat, hope everything will work out with his health.


DesLily said...

now that's a pathetic looking tail! lol..

glad you found out the problem and solved it ..I bet Elvis is glad too.. nothing worse than a constant itch!

Karen Funk Blocher said...

Excellent news!