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Dr. Deb
Dr. Deb, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 10143
Experience:  I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
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Hi I need some advise regarding my cat. I lived with my grandfather

Resolved Question:

Hi I need some advise regarding my cat. I lived with my grandfather that has recently passed away. In March my parents and and myself was moving things around in the house so it was easier for my grandfather and the s were a lot of people in and around my house. My cat attacked me and started attacking people's legs of they got to close to him and he scratches them. In April my grandfather passed away and my cat is still attacking people if there are more then a couple of people in the house. When he was a kitten he had a problem with his right eye which his eye lashes were going under his lids so he had that operated on but recently both of his eyes have been getting gungy. He isn't eating as much as he normally does and he has lost balance a couple of times. I know I need to take him to the vets but I am worried that he will attack once he is out and at the vets. He doesn't fit in an cat box so I normally take him on a lead and carry him. He is indoors cat and only goes out when we take him to the vets. He is 15 years old as well.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 2 years ago.

Hello Dawn, I'm Dr. Deb.

I recently came online and see that your question about Buster hasn't been answered. I'm so sorry that you've had to wait for a response,but if you still need assistance, I'd like to help if I can.

I do have a few questions to ask first, if you don't mind:

1. Are you worried about what might happen once you manage to get Buster to the vet's office?
2. Or are you concerned about how to transport him there in the first place?
3. Does he allow you to pick him up without attacking you?

Since it looks as if you are offline, there may be a delay after I receive your answers since I have to type up a response to you and I may also be offline at the time you respond. But I'll get back to you as soon as I can since I'm on the computer some part of every day.

Thanks for your patience. Deb

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Dr deb. Thanks for replying. He does allow me to carry him without attacking me. He allows my dad to do a lot more like clean his eyes and cuddle him. The thing that worries me the most is why he is attacking people and that he will go loopy and attack the vet when I get him there.

Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 2 years ago.

Dawn:
Thanks so much for the additional information and clarification.

First, let me say how sorry I am about your grandfather; even though he passed several months ago, I'm sure you still miss him each and every day.

It's quite possible that the stress involved in his death triggered a condition which Buster was able to mask. Unfortunately, this is all too common a phenomenon when it comes to a cat.
I can't know for sure, of course, but when older cats start to behave in odd ways, then several possibilities come to mind:
1. Hypertension which is rarely primary in a cat but rather usually secondary to an underlying disease such as Diabetes, kidney issues or hyperthyroid disease. Routine blood work will help to determine if any of these problems are present but it's going to be a challenge, I suspect, to take his blood pressure....or at least to reasonably evaluate the results.

2. A brain mass might cause unusual behavior but will be difficult to diagnose without an MRI...something I suspect you wouldn't put him through and I don't blame you.

3. Dementia or Alzheimer's can cause older cats to manifest unusual behavior but usually there's other signs present such as confusion or staring off into space or loss of housebreaking.

If you can get him to the vet's office, I would warn them that he's been unpredictable of late. He may surprise you, though, and be a perfect gentleman but if he's not, this won't be the first cat that your vet has seen who acts out at the vet's office and it won't be the last!
They should be prepared to handle him with gloves, if necessary, and to take it slow with him so as not to agitate him any more than they have to.

I wouldn't allow this concern to keep you from taking him to the vet; he may be a challenge but trust me when I say that they'll should be prepared to handle him. I might call ahead and explain your concern to them; if there's any hesitation about having him seen at this particular practice, then I'd call around and find another one who feels comfortable dealing with a cat who might have the potential to lash out.

I'd also ask to be taken into an exam room as soon as you arrive so that he doesn't have to sit in the waiting room where the presence of barking dogs or other animals may make him more anxious. Or try to schedule the first appointment of the day.

I hope this helps and that he behaves himself (which actually wouldn't surprise me at all if he did!) . Deb

Dr. Deb and 2 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you for help Dr deb.

Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 2 years ago.

Dawn:
You're more than welcome and thanks for the rating and bonus; they're greatly appreciated.

I hope you'll keep me posted about him; I'd love to know how he behaves at the vet's office and what your vet thinks may be going on with him.

Even though you've rated (if you do, of course), we can still continue to communicate at no additional charge to you.

Best of luck with him. Regards, Deb

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi i called my vets the next day and took him in. He did behave after a couple of minutes but he didnt go for the vet he went for me instead. I had to have him put to sleep that day. She said it was a number of things and i didnt want him to suffer. Its still a bit raw for me. But thank you for remembering and thinking of him. I have attached a picture of him for you . X

Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 2 years ago.

Oh, Dawn, I'm so sorry to hear about Buster although I'm glad that he behaved himself (more or less).

I suspected that you knew something fairly serious was going on with him but were hoping that you were wrong. Under the circumstances, I know you made the best decision for him although I do know it wasn't an easy one to make.

I thank you for sharing his picture; what a very handsome boy he was. I can also see his "attitude" in the expression on his face!

I know there's going to be a huge hole in your heart for a long time to come but I hope you can take some consolation in the knowledge that he had a long life filled with much love and affection.

My sincerest condolences to you and your family at this sad time. Deb