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I am desperate for help

Evelyn Mali

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Hi!
I want to start this by saying I am DESPERATE and I really, really need help.

I'm from Norway and I bought my first cat, a sphynx called Lykke (whitch means happiness).
She is one and a half years old, and castrated.
When I got her she was in a really bad state coming from a home with bad animal abuse.

When I went to the vet with her for her first checkup, I quickly learned that all information I got from the "breeder" was completely wrong (which i suspected).
The vet had never seen claws that badly cut before, way into the nerves.
So she had pain walking and she never got into using scratching posts because she was used to having so much pain in her paws. And believe me, I bought every kind there is and did everything I could to get her to use them.
(Her claws healed a long time ago and she is fine now)

Luckly I had the oppertunity to spend all hours of the day with her, and she quickly became the happiest cat in the world with a lot of love and care.

I did everything by the book to try and get her used to me cutting her claws. I spent one week cutting one claw and got her used to me touching her paws. We made progress but then the problems started:

She got a bad rash on her tummy, and we ended up having to amputate one of her nipples because she wouldn leave it alone, even when it was completely healed.
And then she started having troubles with her ears, constantly putting her whole leg in there and scratch herself bloody.
She had to wear a cone for what I feel is way too long, but we had no choice.
I have taken her to the vet once a month for a year now, and they can't seem to find anything wrong with her ears, but she still won't stop shaking her head and scratching excessively.

All of this, and all the vet trips and ear rinsings and medicine have caused her to get skittish. And it makes me so sad because we have come so far from the day I got her from her terrible first home.
Now I can't get close to cutting her claws or rinsing her ears, and I have to go to the vet every month to sedate her so the vet can cut and rinse. I am not comfterable with this at all, altough the vet says that because of the time inbetween she won't have any physical damage from the sadations.
But every time we go to the vet she feels more unsafe and afraid and I hate that seeing as she became the safest cat in the world after a lot of work.
We can't keep doing this, and my vet has no other suggestions for what to do.
We don't have any cat behavourist in Norway so that is not an option.
Again, I do everything by the book when I am getting her used to things, slowly and patiently. And we made progress until she got sick and we had to give her lots of medicine and care. Now she is so sick of it she tolerates nothing.

I have no clue what to do, the only thing I know is that I am not comfertable sedating her once a month, and everytime we come home from the vet she is more scared and skittish than the last time.

I have also wondered if the excessive ear scratching is some kind of mental issue since there is nothing physically wrong, and since she would not stop scratching and ended up biting her own nipple of even though the rash arond it was completely healed.

I really, really hope someone can help us. I gave her the name Happiness because she is my everything, and she became the happiest cat in the world, so I can't stand seeing her happiness fading away.

Excuse my spelling mistakes, english is not my first language.
And thank you in advace for any help and advice.
 

Catzzzmeow

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@Evelyn Mali Welcome. I am so sorry things are so stressful. Can you get a second opinion? I agree with you sedating monthly is not good. It could very well be like you mentioned an anxiety driven issue and all of the trips to vet stressing her might just be adding to it. We have seen several cats who compulsively in this community that bite their tail and have been prescribed kitty Prozac. Between her history of excessive licking of the her nipple and now excessive itching of the ear, there is a pattern. Trust your gut. Please keep us updated.

Patti
 

Evelyn Mali

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Hi @Catzzzmeow , thank you so so much for replying!
I see, I have been thinking about it being a mental issue a lot, since they can't find anything wrong.
There is just one vet's office in my little town, but there are five vets working there an none of them know what to do. But maybe some other vet in the country can help me, so I'll try calling around.
Do you have any experience with kitty prozac or anything similar, or know someone who do?
It sound really scary to me, I'm afraid it will alter her personality in some way...
 

Catzzzmeow

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Feline hyperesthesia?. Take a look through this post and some of the links in it. I am wondering if you mention feline Hyperesthesia mentioned in this to your vet might help. Maybe it manifested in your girl obsessed with their parts of her body other than her tail. @Evelyn Mali

Patti
 

Catzzzmeow

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@Evelyn Mali. Fingers crossed it can maybe help get things on track for your baby. I know meds can be scary, but giving quality of life back is priceless in the end. Please update us. Your information will someday hopefully help another member in the future. I read a bit more about it and it can be excessive itching, self mutilation to any part of the body...start googling lol. Good luck.

Patti
 
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Evelyn Mali

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@Catzzzmeow Ok, I'm calling the vet on monday. After watching videos of felines with this illness the behaviour is almost exactly the same. Thank you so, so much, I finally have some hope!
 

Lickleone

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My boy got of his gunk fall into his ear which made him shake his head (yes peeps I clean his ears crap happens) when I took him to the vet they prescribed an ear cleaning solution to use for a week this would aid in helping the piece gunk come out it must of worked cause after a day it must have come out cause the shaking and pawing at his head stopped. Some vets who aren't use to Sphynx don't think of that and cause you can't see all way down they don't think of that. Worth maybe trying
 

Sheldon13

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Just food for thought...

Are you in the room when kitty is anesthetized? Most of the time the are not completely sedated with breathing tubes and monitoring. Most of the time there is just enough gas used to make them compliant. Because of this they can still remember quite a lot even though the memories would be hazy. This may be part of the reason for her growing anxiety.

Hopefully it is the hyperesthesia and we will see those behaviors stop altogether with medication. Then maybe she can stop going to the vet every month.


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Toa and Ross

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@Evelyn Mali welcome to sphynxlair for you and Lykke. What a beautiful name did you give her.
Sorry to hear your dealing with this issues. Sending you a big hug for being so loving to your girl and for searching to other solutions.
Can imagine that you feel so sad that Lykke is stressed about all the vet visits and to see that what you build with her falls apart.

@Lickleone made a good suggestion about what can cause the shaking.
If that's not the issue it can be a mental issue due to stress she had before or a tic. @Catzzzmeow made a good suggestion for meds.

Most important is she keeps trysting you. Cuddle and play a lot with her so she feels being with you is fun. Think you're doing a real good job with Lykke!

Natasja
 

MollysMom

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Just wanted to chime in and sayou don't be afraid of any drugs they may give you for her to cope. We had to put both of ours on anti anxiety medication for a couple months this summer, and it was the best thing we could have ever done.
 

celsei

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Aww, poor Lykke. I have a neglected rescue nudie who's much more anxious than the ones I got as babies and gets very stressed about being groomed and vet visits but we manage, I know it's hard. I would also discuss medicine with your vet as I'm pretty sure it is a mental problem from the sounds of it, I think it's fine just the same as humans some need the help to cope it won't be like a heavy sedative or anything like that just calming. For more natural things there's also Feliway comfort zone and Bach rescue remedy for pets that you could give a try. I agree that going to the vet so much is probably not good for her, if there's nothing physically wrong other than some scratches I would just put an antiseptic on it and try to keep her comfortable mentally. Oh also you could ask the vet for a calming sedative pill to use at home before grooming sessions, there's some over the counter ones meant for travel - I don't see why she needs to go to the vet for the cleaning/cutting if you could do it yourself with a sedative
 
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celsei

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Oh also have you tried swaddling her like a baby? You can do this with a big towel or fleece, if you have a dryer heated ones are especially nice. Getting wrapped up naturally calms them and with their paws covered they also stop struggling. To cut nails just take one paw out at a time. Maybe this in combination with some calming medicine would be good. Holding them in a warm blanket is a great way to calm them in general and cuddle too
 

Hairless Blessing

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It could be allergies also, making her dig and scratch like this.
Even butting her nipple. Allergies can become that bad.
I would suggest you have blood drawn and ask the Vet to
check for allergies. Food, inhalent, trees, grasses, molds, inside items.
Anything, your baby could be allergic to.
My Izmae was miserable scratching, licking herself until she was chapped.
Even, throwing up.
Read this thread.
Izmae's allergies journey
 

admin

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Hi!
I want to start this by saying I am DESPERATE and I really, really need help.

I'm from Norway and I bought my first cat, a sphynx called Lykke (whitch means happiness).
She is one and a half years old, and castrated.
When I got her she was in a really bad state coming from a home with bad animal abuse.

When I went to the vet with her for her first checkup, I quickly learned that all information I got from the "breeder" was completely wrong (which i suspected).
The vet had never seen claws that badly cut before, way into the nerves.
So she had pain walking and she never got into using scratching posts because she was used to having so much pain in her paws. And believe me, I bought every kind there is and did everything I could to get her to use them.
(Her claws healed a long time ago and she is fine now)

Luckly I had the oppertunity to spend all hours of the day with her, and she quickly became the happiest cat in the world with a lot of love and care.

I did everything by the book to try and get her used to me cutting her claws. I spent one week cutting one claw and got her used to me touching her paws. We made progress but then the problems started:

She got a bad rash on her tummy, and we ended up having to amputate one of her nipples because she wouldn leave it alone, even when it was completely healed.
And then she started having troubles with her ears, constantly putting her whole leg in there and scratch herself bloody.
She had to wear a cone for what I feel is way too long, but we had no choice.
I have taken her to the vet once a month for a year now, and they can't seem to find anything wrong with her ears, but she still won't stop shaking her head and scratching excessively.

All of this, and all the vet trips and ear rinsings and medicine have caused her to get skittish. And it makes me so sad because we have come so far from the day I got her from her terrible first home.
Now I can't get close to cutting her claws or rinsing her ears, and I have to go to the vet every month to sedate her so the vet can cut and rinse. I am not comfterable with this at all, altough the vet says that because of the time inbetween she won't have any physical damage from the sadations.
But every time we go to the vet she feels more unsafe and afraid and I hate that seeing as she became the safest cat in the world after a lot of work.
We can't keep doing this, and my vet has no other suggestions for what to do.
We don't have any cat behavourist in Norway so that is not an option.
Again, I do everything by the book when I am getting her used to things, slowly and patiently. And we made progress until she got sick and we had to give her lots of medicine and care. Now she is so sick of it she tolerates nothing.

I have no clue what to do, the only thing I know is that I am not comfertable sedating her once a month, and everytime we come home from the vet she is more scared and skittish than the last time.

I have also wondered if the excessive ear scratching is some kind of mental issue since there is nothing physically wrong, and since she would not stop scratching and ended up biting her own nipple of even though the rash arond it was completely healed.

I really, really hope someone can help us. I gave her the name Happiness because she is my everything, and she became the happiest cat in the world, so I can't stand seeing her happiness fading away.

Excuse my spelling mistakes, english is not my first language.
And thank you in advace for any help and advice.
Great suggestions thus far, thanks @Catzzzmeow foe linking that post. Have you tired a different food? Perhaps as @Hairless Blessing had mentioned, it could be allergies, its a cheap and easy way to rule allergies issues out. What are you currently feeding her. :)
 
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Lickleone

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Just food for thought...

Are you in the room when kitty is anesthetized? Most of the time the are not completely sedated with breathing tubes and monitoring. Most of the time there is just enough gas used to make them compliant. Because of this they can still remember quite a lot even though the memories would be hazy. This may be part of the reason for her growing anxiety.

Hopefully it is the hyperesthesia and we will see those behaviors stop altogether with medication. Then maybe she can stop going to the vet every month.


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How do you know this happens?
 

Sheldon13

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A) I am a pediatric perianestesia nurse, so I'm very familiar with anesthetic gases.

And B) I worked directly with a vet when I was a medical liaison for an animal rescue for a time.

It is not torture. However, with repeated trips I can see how it could exacerbate and already growing anxiety. I agree with the above suggestion of attempting at home treatment with am anti anxiety medication. My personal choice would be something in the benzodiazepine class of drug. There is some slight amnesia caused and they also happen to be very effective at calming existing anxiety.


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Lickleone

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My question wasn't accusatory I really wanted to know thank you for answering. I disagree I think it is torture to the animal they don't understand or have a choice. We have a choice when we go for surgery the doctor will ask or at very least explain to us etc but animal don't have that. Imagine how frightening it must be for them. I will never take my babies to a vet who would even think that's ok let alone do that. I will now always know to ask if my babies have to go for surgery.
 

Evelyn Mali

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Hi everyone!
I just want to thank you all so, so much! I feel I've gotten much more help here than a hundred trips to the vet. I really wish I asked you much sooner! I'm really thankful for your help, and so is Lykke!

Yes, I am always right by her holding her paw when they put her under. They put her to sleep but not totally with oxygen and all. They put a thing down her ears so they see all the way to the eardrums, but there is no gunk down there at all, and she still shakes and scratches like crazy.
She is tested for everything. All allergies including food, they have checked her heart, blood, liver values, everything and there is nothing physically wrong with her.

The Feline Hyperesthesia matches so well with everything. Even little funny things I wrote off as quirky personality traits. So I definitely feel like you enlightenment has given me new hope.

But I still don't know how to go about trimming her claws. I've tried the towel wrapping with no luck. She freaks out to the point of no return. I really feel like I have tried everything, and it breaks my heart that even if we find the right medicine for her Hyperesthesia I'll still have to take her to the vet once a month to trim her claws. Do you have any suggestions for how to go about this? I would be really thankful, because I don't know how much more she is willing to take before she starts distancing herself from me.
I just can't make her go through this stress anymore.

And I always have Feliway in the sockets to help her be as calm as possible.

I still feel really reluctant putting her on medicine, because I'm on many myself and know what they can do to you.
Do any of you have experience with a one particular medicine type for cats with mental problems or Hyperesthesia? How does it effect them, or does it change them in any way other that diminishing the symptoms of the illness?

Again, thank yo so much. Your help has been priceless to us!

@Lickleone @Sheldon13 @admin @Hairless Blessing @celsei @MollysMom @Toa and Ross @Sheldon13
 
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Sheldon13

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My question wasn't accusatory I really wanted to know thank you for answering. I disagree I think it is torture to the animal they don't understand or have a choice. We have a choice when we go for surgery the doctor will ask or at very least explain to us etc but animal don't have that. Imagine how frightening it must be for them. I will never take my babies to a vet who would even think that's ok let alone do that. I will now always know to ask if my babies have to go for surgery.
I didn't think it was accusatory.


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celsei

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Hi everyone!
I just want to thank you all so, so much! I feel I've gotten much more help here than a hundred trips to the vet. I really wish I asked you much sooner! I'm really thankful for your help, and so is Lykke!

Yes, I am always right by her holding her paw when they put her under. They put her to sleep but not totally with oxygen and all. They put a thing down her ears so they see all the way to the eardrums, but there is no gunk down there at all, and she still shakes and scratches like crazy.
She is tested for everything. All allergies including food, they have checked her heart, blood, liver values, everything and there is nothing physically wrong with her.

The Feline Hyperesthesia matches so well with everything. Even little funny things I wrote off as quirky personality traits. So I definitely feel like you enlightenment has given me new hope.

But I still don't know how to go about trimming her claws. I've tried the towel wrapping with no luck. She freaks out to the point of no return. I really feel like I have tried everything, and it breaks my heart that even if we find the right medicine for her Hyperesthesia I'll still have to take her to the vet once a month to trim her claws. Do you have any suggestions for how to go about this? I would be really thankful, because I don't know how much more she is willing to take before she starts distancing herself from me.
I just can't make her go through this stress anymore.

And I always have Feliway in the sockets to help her be as calm as possible.

I still feel really reluctant putting her on medicine, because I'm on many myself and know what they can do to you.
Do any of you have experience with a one particular medicine type for cats with mental problems or Hyperesthesia? How does it effect them, or does it change them in any way other that diminishing the symptoms of the illness?

Again, thank yo so much. Your help has been priceless to us!

@Lickleone @Sheldon13 @admin @Hairless Blessing @celsei @MollysMom @Toa and Ross @Sheldon13
If you don't want to put her on medicine all the time just get a calming medicine/sedative to use only for the trimming or when she gets extra bad with scratching her ears or something so you can try to do it at home like that. I think for the trimming she probably needs medicine. It's true that many things aren't good to take long term and there are side effects from my own experience taking them but I would try to do it short term just to get her through the stressful phase and back into a good routine. For long term I would ask for something herbal/natural I'll try to look later what kinds they have
 

Catzzzmeow

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@Evelyn Mali hopefully when you see your vet and if they do think it is FHS then they can better tell you what to expect as far as reactions to meds etc. Just like with people not every cat will react the same way to meds, but you will at least know what to look for. I will be looking for your update after you see your vet. Good luck!
 

Lickleone

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@Evelyn Mali you can always try Zyklene it's a natural derivative you can open a capsule and mix it in with treat (I use a paste) it's totally natural you can look it up for yourself and read up on it. You have to give it for a while as they say it has to "build" up but works. I too myself be hesitant to put into medication unless you have a definitive diagnosis but that's why zyklene is so good as it's natural
 

Evelyn Mali

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Hi everyone!
I am so sorry for the very late update, but things have been crazy around here with Lykke.

We drove her four hours away to a bigger veterinary hospital, and spent a whole day there examining everything about her.
They said that they don't think its Feline Hyperesthesia, but they think she is so nervous because of everything bad that happened to her when she was a kitten, in her previous home.
She got better with me working with her, but when she started getting sick and we had to care for her, the stress came back full force, because she is so used to being stressed due to her bad start in life.
The stress have cause her to have an urinary tract infection, which is under control now, thankfully.
And the problem with her ears is overactive wax glands, that causes an overproduction of earwax, so much in fact that the weight of it has broken her eardrums, because the vet in my town was to afraid to take out everything, even though they should have.
My vet has now got strict instructions and guidelines for how to care for Lykke. And she has gotten cortisone for her ears, to prevent overproduction of wax, and going to the vet as often.
She is from now on going to have FULL anesthesia everytime, so I found out I was right thinking that her not being totally asleep is a bad thing, especially for her anxiety.
We also tried Sarotex, which is an anti-depressive, but she had an awful reaction to that, so we stopped giving it to her.
She seems a lot more calm now, she seeks attention from me again, and the only time she gets freaked out is if she is surprised. Now that her ears are TOTALLY clean, she leaves them alone much more, and she is more tolerant to me giving her medicine.

So all in all, we got misinformed and wrong care from my local vets, but as I said they now know what to do. It just sucks that she had to go through all of that just because they didn't know how to do their job, but I'm so happy we got the help we needed from that other vet. And she seems so much better and happier.
I haven't completely given up the thought of Hyperesthesia, because there is so much pointing towards that, but I trust the vet at the bigger hospital, and she seems better, so thats very good!

I want to thank you again for your help, it made me realize that I had to stand my ground and demand help and answers.
 

Catzzzmeow

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Thanks for the update. I am glad to hear there is improvement and that she seems much calmer.
 
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