newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Blind and deaf pets can live happy, healthy, quality lives. In fact, sometimes it's hard to tell them from sighted pets. They do, though, have their own special needs.
bethandtiger
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newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by bethandtiger » Fri May 08, 2015 9:06 pm

My 10 month old cat tiger was born a runt. She was abandoned by her mother at 5 weeks. When I took her in at 6 weeks she was only 5 ounces. I syringe fed and took special care of her for about a month before she hit 2 lbs and seemed healthy. Last Thursday I took her to get fixed. She had a reaction to anesthesia and had a stroke (or something similar). I don't really care to go after them or anything for it. Shes had so many health problems that it wouldn't do any good anyway, even if they are at fault. She wasn't walking for the first few days so no-one noticed. Once she started walking again I realized she was blind and the same day I noticed she was deaf. She is also still having mobility issues with her back hips and she falls over often. She still seems content. She spends most of her day sleeping. She is still very lethargic, but she's always been a deep sleeper. When she walks she walks in circles (kind of) not in a brain damage pattern. That's what my vet said. My vet and the clinic she got fixed at are totally different. My vet said her eyes are still reacting to light, so there's a chance she made get her vision back. So what are some things I can do to help her? She is in a diaper. I'm modifying pampers and they seem to work well so far. I also am lettIng her ride around in my sons old infant sling sometimes. She seems to like that. I stay at home with my 19 month old son so it's not hard for me to give her the care she needs. Oh, I am also syringe feeding her critical care food from the vet because she won't eat herself yet. She won't bite and only laps. She gets too tired from lapping and I need to finish out her meals for her.

Fortunately I have some mild experience with disabled pets. I have one other rescue cat, he's fine, just fat. I also have two ferrets. My female ferret (also rescue) is deaf. We didn't know it at first... we just thought she was a little slow. Then one day I turned on the vaccum and all the animals skittered except her. She just looked confused as to why everyone ran away. We use signs and floor vibrations with her. She gets along with no issues. Auctually after we figured out she was deaf, we also realized she is incredibly smart.

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critters
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by critters » Sat May 09, 2015 9:18 am

:slant: Yes, it's very possible that vision and/or hearing may return, at least in part, given time; it's fairly common with brain damage in young ones. Circling can be a brain damage pattern, although vets usually attribute it to dizziness. Head tilt is another. You're doing great! :trophy: You're right that she's basically another baby; I, too, used a baby carrier with my Baby, who was severely disabled, but she preferred to drape over my LEFT shoulder. :lol:

Bendy's Mimosa had a similar event and a similar result, and she got some vision and hearing back, although I'm not sure exactly how much. My Ares is moderately disabled at this point and has just turned 2; he was severely brain damaged after being eaten by a big cat at just a couple of days old. I can't do links with this computer, but if you want to see him, go to Amazon, set "Kindle books" in the drop-down, and search "Truslow Ares" to see his books. He has 2, and they cover his recovery (the first is when he was youngest). Baby has a book too.

When did it happen? You're very lucky that the vets haven't recommended putting her down; they usually do. I love watching them get their skills back, relearning things, and figuring out how to do what they want to do.

bethandtiger
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by bethandtiger » Sat May 09, 2015 9:34 am

My vet was very much in favor of giving her time to heal. He said it was still up to me but I'm pretty sure he would have been very upset if I did. He's a good guy. Thanks for the reply!

It was last Thursday. So a week and a couple days ago

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critters
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by critters » Sat May 09, 2015 10:01 am

So that's VERY early in recovery, and anything's possible!


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BendyMom
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by BendyMom » Sat May 09, 2015 5:54 pm

Welcome to the group. Yes she sounds very much like my girl Mimosa, who stopped breathing under anesthesia.
Communicaitng with vibration works very well. I did that with her until she regained some hearing. She always remained farsighted. coordination takes time to come back. Doing physical therapy will help - moving her limbs in range of motion, helping her to walk straight when she walks. She'll get it. Mimosa never regained fine control of her toes so sometimes balancing coudl be a problem for her. I carrierd her around a lot too, also with a diaper and syringe feeding at first.
You're doing all the right things, she needs time and love.

It is a possible complication of anesthesia, it isn't necessarily the vet's fault. Anesthesia is not completely safe. i wish possible more people knew that. Soemtimes pets die under anesthesia. Soem kinds are safer than others, ketamine seems to have the most complications. some cats wake up seem ok only to pass away hours later. Running sq fluids afterwards helps them recover.

Something i did to help Mimosa navigate was to put different texture rugs down for her. each room had a different feel that way. Her life was limited from her brain damage, but I still think she had a good life.

i miss her very much.

I don't know what help I can be, but I'll try to answer questions. She was the most brain damaged cat I ever knew.
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critters
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by critters » Wed May 13, 2015 10:02 am

BendyMom wrote: Her life was limited from her brain damage, but I still think she had a good life.

i miss her very much.

I don't know what help I can be, but I'll try to answer questions. She was the most brain damaged cat I ever knew.
Same with Baby.

bethandtiger
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by bethandtiger » Wed May 13, 2015 3:24 pm

Thanks for the help so far guys! She seems to be getting along all right. Still bumping into things, but not as bad. She looks like she's mapping a little. She is eating on her own now too, so no more syringe feeding! She still won't lap water on her own, so I have to syringe that. It there a certain way to do it? Or will she just figure it out eventually? She just sticks her nose in and gets freaked out. I keep it in the same spot, so it shouldn't be a surprise for long.
Also are there any special feeding dishes? She keeps walking right into her food when she is done and tracking it all over my floor. What about a super easy access litter box? She's still in diapers right now because she can't make it, but Mayne eventually.

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critters
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by critters » Thu May 14, 2015 7:02 am

bethandtiger wrote:Thanks for the help so far guys! She seems to be getting along all right. Still bumping into things, but not as bad. She looks like she's mapping a little. She is eating on her own now too, so no more syringe feeding! She still won't lap water on her own, so I have to syringe that. It there a certain way to do it? Or will she just figure it out eventually? She just sticks her nose in and gets freaked out. My Baby, who was quite severe, would snuff water, too; her depth perception was WAY off. Until your baby learns, maybe putting meat broth (without onions) into the water would help her smell it. If she has any vision, you could increase contrast by adding food color to the water. Here's Baby's book; it's the only way I can post her pic with this computer. http://www.amazon.com/Baby-Easy-Reader- ... uslow+baby I keep it in the same spot, so it shouldn't be a surprise for long.
Also are there any special feeding dishes? She keeps walking right into her food when she is done and tracking it all over my floor.Hmm. Can she stand? If so, you might try a raised dish. I wandered thrift stores for ages before I found the perfect nontip bowl for a nonwalking floor dweller like Baby. What about a super easy access litter box? We LOVE the Hartz dog litter boxes, but I'm not sure they make them anymore. Amazon has some possibilities, though.http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_ ... text%2C212 This one is VERY much like the old Hartz smaller size.http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_ ... text%2C212 My Ares http://www.amazon.com/Ares-Easy-Reader- ... uslow+ares flatly refuses to use a box but will use pee pads alongside it, so I can live with that.She's still in diapers right now because she can't make it, but Mayne eventually. I'd say it's a good possibility.

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critters
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by critters » Thu May 14, 2015 7:15 am

Here are some eating ideas http://lifewithchcats.com/ch-topics-tips/eating/ , and you might want to join the CH Kitty Club. There's a FB side, and, I think, an email listserv too. https://www.facebook.com/groups/CHKittyClub/?fref=nf If you're in the UK, there's a UK group with a fair amount of crossover.

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critters
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by critters » Thu May 14, 2015 7:19 am

Oh, just found more low entry boxes that don't classify themselves as such. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_ ... litter+box

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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by CarolC » Sun May 17, 2015 9:15 pm

Ohmygosh, that Puppy Go Here litterbox really IS almost identical to the SecondNature litter boxes. Kind of makes you wonder if you should stock up or something. I still have ***one*** left.

Good find, not to mention all the others you linked!!!

http://www.amazon.com/Litter-PuppyGoHer ... litter+box
:wow:

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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by critters » Mon May 18, 2015 10:42 am

Yes, that one is as close as it gets! :lol:

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BendyMom
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by BendyMom » Mon May 18, 2015 10:44 pm

Mimosa was syringe fed for most of her life. her head bobbed from intention tremors so it was difficult for her to eat. For feeding I meal fed. I had to experiment to see what kind of bowl worked best for her. She would be in her playpen (where she was when I couldn't watch her) because she had figured out that she coudl lean on teh side to stabilize herself and that made eating easier. A tall sided box with an open top - or the bottom half a of a carrier - also works well for this. I cannot remember now which bowls she preferred.
Mapping will come. This kind of recovery takes months.

She learned to help with the syringed water. She knew the feel of the nozzle and would start swallowing as I slowly syringed water on her tongue. She also didn't wiggle much, she did what she coudl to work with me.

She really liked time outside she woudl stretch and look up at the sun, she wold be more active on her own. My one regret is that i did not take her outside more often. obviously she had to be watched, but she clearly enjoyed it.
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Tokimeki
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Re: newly blind and deaf 10 month old cat

Post by Tokimeki » Mon Jul 30, 2018 12:29 pm

bethandtiger wrote:My 10 month old cat tiger was born a runt. She was abandoned by her mother at 5 weeks. When I took her in at 6 weeks she was only 5 ounces. I syringe fed and took special care of her for about a month before she hit 2 lbs and seemed healthy. Last Thursday I took her to get fixed. She had a reaction to anesthesia and had a stroke (or something similar). I don't really care to go after them or anything for it. Shes had so many health problems that it wouldn't do any good anyway, even if they are at fault. She wasn't walking for the first few days so no-one noticed. Once she started walking again I realized she was blind and the same day I noticed she was deaf. She is also still having mobility issues with her back hips and she falls over often. She still seems content. She spends most of her day sleeping. She is still very lethargic, but she's always been a deep sleeper.
critters wrote:Yes, it's very possible that vision and/or hearing may return, at least in part, given time; it's fairly common with brain damage in young ones. Circling can be a brain damage pattern, although vets usually attribute it to dizziness. Head tilt is another. You're doing great! :trophy: You're right that she's basically another baby; I, too, used a baby carrier with my Baby, who was severely disabled, but she preferred to drape over my LEFT shoulder. :lol:

Bendy's Mimosa had a similar event and a similar result, and she got some vision and hearing back, although I'm not sure exactly how much. My Ares is moderately disabled at this point and has just turned 2; he was severely brain damaged after being eaten by a big cat at just a couple of days old. I can't do links with this computer, but if you want to see him, go to Amazon, set "Kindle books" in the drop-down, and search "Truslow Ares" to see his books. He has 2, and they cover his recovery (the first is when he was youngest). Baby has a book too.

When did it happen? You're very lucky that the vets haven't recommended putting her down; they usually do. I love watching them get their skills back, relearning things, and figuring out how to do what they want to do.
I just came across this and had to post, even though nobody may be active anymore, given that the topic is 3 years old.

Our 18 month old cat Tiger (yes, same name, but male!) just went through the same ordeal as bethandtiger's Tiger. We took him for an MRI to investigate two previous unexplained seizures further, and he went into cardiac arrest when they injected the contrast agent (we didn't even know would be used). He had two subsequent seizures/?strokes that wiped out his senses completely. He was fine in the morning and completely catatonic when we saw him in the evening of the same day we were expecting to just pick him up after a 'routine' investigation. He stayed in the pet hospital for 10 days, was at first wobbly but started to walk around within 3 days - however, it was clear he was blind. He seemed to respond to sounds at first, but after a few days of seemingly improving, he took a downward turn with a high temperature, so they put him on corticosteroids to try and save what could be saved. He's reacted well to this and has gone from strength to strength, but he is certainly deaf-blind. There were moments I was so disheartened, that I wasn't sure whether to bring him home. Luckily my partner talked some sense into me. Tiger's sense of smell and taste returned with the steroids within a few days, as did his proprioception. This is apparently also neurological, so we are hoping that his sense of hearing and vision will at least partly improve with some time too. Physically he's completely fit and his senses are all working - eye light reflex and all - but the brain is scrambled.

He's been back home since last Sunday, and he has been absolutely amazing. The vet said to keep him in one room at first and gradually increase his space, and we did buy a puppy pen for him, but that went completely unused. He seemed to instinctively know he was back home when we put him down in the living room - sniffing and having a wander around. We put cushions in all the room corners and hung a blanket over sharp corners of furniture, otherwise the layout was the same. He was not distressed at all, the way we had seen him in the visiting room at the hospital, which was obviously completely foreign to him. We let him explore the rest of the ground floor, he found the food and litter area back in the utility room in no time at all, and then made a beeline for the door to the back yard. Our cats are indoor cats and only recently started going outside into the enclosed yard, and both absolutely love it. Tiger was always the leader, exploring, working out how to open doors and get into the food cupboards :)

He clearly wanted to go out! After only an hour or two back home. So we let him out and he had an explore in the back yard too. Bumped headfirst into some flat surfaces, but managed to get around obstacles extremely well (whiskers are working!). The puppy pen seemed to confuse him more than do good, as it's not an environment he had ever been in, so that went straight back into the box. We left him in the living room downstairs for the first night and put the litter tray down with some puppy training pads - he had no issue using this for peeing, pooping took a few days until all was inside. He finds the food tray no problem, but we have the same issue with him not drinking water from the bowl. Tried putting some tuna water in with it, no avail. He does drink cat milk though. So far I've not used a syringe, but just put extra water in with food, which he laps up. He doesn't chew anything. He was pretty skinny when he got back, lost about half a kilogram - but he's been eating his way through 5-6 packs of food a day (bearing in mind he's not having any dry food anymore, so I guess that's normal). The difficult thing is that my partner and I both work full-time, and we obviously worry about him during the day. The other issue is his sister - who has wanted nothing to do with him since he's been back. They used to be very close as kittens, until their personalities surfaced. Tiger has always been the affectionate, cuddly cat that needed to be around people. Lily is very much her own cat. She's been hissing and growling at him - obviously not recognising him, on top of feeling threatened and spooked as he doesn't behave like a 'normal' cat. He can smell her and often walks up to her, but since he cannot see nor hear her, he ends up walking straight into her face. She's taken a swipe at him once, otherwise she's luckily not been physically aggressive towards him. He seems to sense her though and often stops shorter and I feel he is confused then. We've put some Feliway cat pheromone diffusers around the house, and I believe they've helped to some extent. It breaks my heart though, as I feel he really needs a cat friend to help him not feel lonely during the day and night, when he is alone on the ground floor, since we haven't figured out the upper floor plus bannister and staircase yet.

It is amazing to see how well he navigates around the house after a few days though. If you watch him walk around you'd have no idea he's deaf blind - until you call him or his sister jumps on a surface and he just stands around sniffing. He cries a little at times, but it is not distressed, more to reassure himself. He's always been vocal, letting off little chirps to tell us what's going on, and these have come back. He also finally started purring again after two days at home - something I had desperately been waiting for, and that made me cry a little. Some other of his little quirks also resurfaced, such as curling up when having a doze, and having a scratch of the entranceway carpet that's for wiping your shoes on. He's also taken to lying there to guard the main door, something he always used to do in the mornings when I was on the way to work. Little things that make him Tiger.

Sorry, long rant, but it felt necessary and important to share. If any of the original contributors are still around, I'd love to hear how your fur babies have been doing. The main thing I'm worrying about is him being lonely, and how to potentially reintroduce play to him. I cuddle him a lot, and I tried catnip toys and a treat dispenser mouse, but he doesn't do anything with it so far. Have any of you got any experience with toys for deaf blind cats?

Many thanks in advance!

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