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11 year old cat with liver disease/damage/tumor

  1. #1

    Unhappy 11 year old cat with liver disease/damage/tumor

    New here! Looking for other's experiences with a cat dealing with liver problems. I'm familiar with kidney issues in cats, but liver is unknown to me.



    My 11 year old cat has been losing weight for awhile now, but recently she's lost a lot rather quickly. We also noticed her fur doesn't look as thick as it used to be, though no bald spots. We took her to the vet and discover she's jaundice. (Felt like a bad cat mom for not noticing her ears were yellow). Ears, gums, whites of eyes, and skin are all very yellow.

    They did blood work - all liver labs came back really high. All other labs came back normal. So vet doesn't know why her liver is acting up.

    They gave her Vitamin C and B12 shots in hopes that her liver will repair itself. We've gotten her to eat a little by giving her wet food instead of the usual dry. We go back next week to check her labs again to see if there's been any improvement. I doubt there has, since other than eating a little, she's acting the same.

    She's over all been acting like her normal self though, aside from not eating. She's older so she usually just lays around anyway. She still jumps up on the bed or her cat tree.

    Anyone have experience with this? Does the liver recover like this in a cat? I think our vet may be sugar coating a little for us. He said the next step is an ultrasound with anesthesia to see what we're dealing with.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    New Hampshire
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    welcome to the forum 11 isn't really that old, I lost one at 12 to cancer but all my others lived to be around 18+. I don't know if the liver regenerates itself or not, just my opinion but I think for that to happen the part of the diseased liver would have to be taken out and hopefully the new gown missing piece would come in healthy and take over for the diseased liver. Livers do regenerate themselves in healthy animals and humans, but first the diseased part has to be removed.

    In any event good luck and before doing anything drastic you may want to get a second opinion. Take her to a vet teaching hospital, if anyone can help her they can
    he is your friend and protector, he will love you unconditionally, you owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion

  3. #3
    Thank you!

  4. #4
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    New Hampshire
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    I would highly recommend taking her to a vet school or vet teaching hospital. They are up to date on all the latest and greatest, these are students working under highly qualified vets, they will not stop looking until they have an answer for you. They are no more expensive than a regular vet, sometimes even cheaper. At this point you have nothing to loose. Plus they see more unusual cases than your regular vet. Just think about it. It might save her life
    he is your friend and protector, he will love you unconditionally, you owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    Florida
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    438
    I concur on getting a second opinion. The idea you should hope for regeneration is just not right even if it can happen because the worst thing you can do is put off treatment.

    Jaundice is caused by a blockage of the bile duct. This happened to my grandma and dad when they had malignant tumors in their livers and anatomically, cats have the same digestive system. So that is a big red flag something must be done ASAP.

    If feline livers are like ours, healthy tissue would also be removed during surgery to prevent the tumor from returning. Eleven years for a cat is equivalent to 60 in humans - borderline senior - so I would, if possible, prefer a treatment that does not require anesthesia. A vet with experience in treating liver diseases would know whether surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation is the best option for your cat.

    Welcome to the forum. What is your cat's name?
    Rescued is my favorite breed. Don't shop, adopt!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    PA USA
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    WELCOME! My cat Jake who has FLUTD (feline lower urinary tract disease) for years also had an underlying liver condition. It was treated by meds but the vet told me to watch out for jaundice, poor coat and other signs that it's flaring up again. So far so good and I hope it stays that way and I hope the same can be said for your furry girl.
    “Save a life and save a stray”

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    USA
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    10,730
    Hello and welcome! Milk Thistle is an excellent herb for the liver, I use it myself and have given it to my pets on occasion although they never had serious liver issues. You can use the liquid tincture as long as it's alcohol-FREE. There are products available specifically for cats if you look online. https://www.vetinfo.com/milk-thistle-for-cats.html

    http://www.nhvnaturalpetproducts.com...r-disease.aspx


    General info on Milk Thistle: http://www.natmedtalk.com/wiki/Milk_Thistle

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
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    PA USA
    Posts
    2,491
    Thanks Alpha! I'll have to try the Milk Thistle for Jake. Natural products are much safer too. I shop on Only Natural Pet and here's a link in case anyone is interested: https://www.onlynaturalpet.com/produ...ct/148069.aspx
    “Save a life and save a stray”

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    USA
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    Sounds like a good source Esme, I've only used people Milk Thistle that I buy at the local Natural Grocers, alcohol free for whenever I gave it to my pets, usually my dogs, never remember giving it to my cats.

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