Tommy is our Brave Heart for July 2018

Our chosen brave heart is Tommy an 11 year old Male cat. Tommy was very poorly when he was admitted and required lots of tests to assess why he was so unwell. He was very well behaved for all his tests and treatments and that is why we have chosen him as our brave heart.

Tommy’s Story
On Monday 9th April Tommy came in to see our vet Hoong. He had been vomiting for the past 24 hours and was not feeling himself at all.

Upon more detailed questioning we were able to find out that some slug bait were put out on the garden on the Saturday afternoon and the vomiting started that evening. Hoong was worried that the lawn feed was the cause of the vomiting. Tommy might not have eaten it directly but may have licked some as he was grooming his coat.

There is different type of slug bait and it was important to determine exactly which one it was, as some could cause seizures while others cause poisoning within hours of ingestion.

Tommy was admitted to the hospital where we took some bloods and put him on an intravenous drip to hydrate him. The blood results showed elevated liver enzymes and pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas.)

Hoong spoke to a Veterinary Poisons information service to determine the active ingredient of the lawn feed they advised that ingestion of this particular lawn feed could cause iron toxicity to cause the signs above.

August Brave Heart TommyDuring Tommy’s stay, he developed a high temperature and the nurses were monitoring for other signs of poisoning which involved regular temperature checks, checking his body for bruising, monitoring for signs of discomfort and pain, encouraging to eat.

Due to the prolonged period of in appetence along with the fever, we were worried that Tommy would not eat on his own if left to his own devices. Thus, he was given a general anaesthetic and an oesophageal feeding tube placed.

A small incision is made on the left hand side of the neck and the tube fed into the oesophagus. A feeding regime was calculated and Tommy was fed through the tube every 4-6 hours. We were also able to put oral medication down the feeding tube which is really handy and reduces the amount of stress during medication time.

Tommy’s owner came to visit him daily and with the combined dedication of the owners and the nurses, Tommy’s temperature returned to normal and he started to eat on his own (and the feeding tube doesn’t interfere with this).
We were delighted when he passed his first poo! Tommy was looking brighter after a week and was keen to come out of his cat kennel and stretch his legs to give us cuddles.

Subsequent blood test confirmed that his liver was now back to normal levels and we were happy for him to go home with his feeding tube.

His owners continued tube feeding at home until Tommy was eating reliably on his own accord and continued with oral medication that was given via the feeding tube which was very convenient for the owners (no pill popper or disguising medication with treats)!

Five weeks past since he was first diagnosed with Iron toxicity and he was cleared to have the feeding tube removed and go outside!