How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Susan Your Own Question
Dr. Susan
Dr. Susan, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 6785
Experience:  8 years of clinical experience with specialty in veterinary pain management, urology, and geriatrics
25524280
Type Your Vet Question Here...
Dr. Susan is online now

Hello, my kitten died being spayed. We are devastated and looking

Resolved Question:

Hello, my kitten died being spayed. We are devastated and looking for possible reasons. They said she just stopped breathing and arrested. They couldnt rouse her. I feel i need a reason in order to help the grieving process thank you
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr. Susan replied 2 years ago.
Dr. Susan :

Hi, I can help you with your question toda.

Dr. Susan :

*today

Dr. Susan :

I'm so sorry for the loss of your little one.

Dr. Susan :

Unexpected death is particularly difficult to cope with.

Dr. Susan :

Did she have any health issues prior to her spay?

Customer: Hello, no she didnt. She was very little, maybe the runt of the litter.
Customer: They gave her adrenaline but nothing worked, she was such a happy loved kitten
Dr. Susan :

I see. Being the smallest one, it is certainly possible that she had a congenital problem that was not detected prior to surgery. Did she have blood work tested prior to anesthesia?

Customer: No she didnt unfortunately. I didnt think to request any.
Customer: She was little but full of energy with a healthy appetite
Dr. Susan :

OK. What day was her surgery scheduled for?

Customer: Monday just gone.
Customer: she had been a tiny bit lethargic but nothing to speak of. But now i wonder if she was a tiny bit below par. Would they have done basic exams prior to the op? Would they have felt her tummy?
Dr. Susan :

Yes, they should have completed a full physical exam.

Dr. Susan :

You can ask your vet if you might have a necropsy performed (animal autopsy)/.

Dr. Susan :

This could give us some insight if her heart was abnormal, for example.

Dr. Susan :

It may not be possible depending on where she has been kept.

Customer: We have buried her already in the garden.
Customer: But would they have heard a heart abnormality?
Customer: On exam?
Dr. Susan :

No, not necessarily. The only thing we can hear are murmurs and arrhythmias, and heart disease in cats is often undetected until something catastrophic occurs.

Customer: We were sold her at just 5 weeks old. Which we didnt realise at the time was too young. So she was off to a bad start in a way
Customer: She had already fleas and worms (badly) when we collected her.
Dr. Susan :

Oh that poor little thing. She did have a very difficult start.

Customer: Yes we took her straight away to the vet the next day and they were concerned. She had flea drops as soon as she was old enough but until then she had spray from the supermarket. Could i have damaged her liver by giving that to her too young? I think if i hurt her liver she wouldnt have processed the anaesthetic. Would there have been any signs that i had done this? I cant get it out of my head that i damaged her when she was entrusted to my care :(
Dr. Susan :

No, I really don't think this had anything to do with the flea spray.

Dr. Susan :

I absolutely don't think this was due to any care she received from you.

Dr. Susan :

My concerns would be primarily a congenital defect, or some type of adverse reaction to the anesthetics.

Customer: Is it possible that i had overloaded her body with chemicals early on? My neighbour said it was that and i was horrified
Dr. Susan :

No, this would have cause apparent illness.

Dr. Susan :

If she had a reaction to a flea spray, most often we see neurologic signs like twitching or seizures.

Dr. Susan :

You would have known right away if there was a problem.

Customer: Oh thank you, ***** ***** certainly didnt have that. She ate well and was inquisitive and playful. Thank you for all your kindness. I have to work everything through in my head as we are heartbroken. One other little question, can cats catch infections (GI) from humans? When i was poorly 10 days ago, she stayed by my side constantly. Did i infect her?
Dr. Susan :

No, there are very few diseases that can be passed between species. Infectious agents like salmonella can affect both, but most viruses are species specific.

Customer: Thank you so much, you have put my mind to rest. We do have a a reputable vet but i couldnt ask too many questions without sounding accusatory. Obviously i didnt want that. Do they ever cut corners ? Maybe they didnt weigh her properly?
Dr. Susan :

I can't speak for your specific vet, there certainly are both sides of the spectrum available.

Dr. Susan :

I would hope that they don't cut corners. The fact that they have a good reputation is in their favor, the public usually gets a good idea of who practices good medicine.

Customer: They are long established in the town. All their animal cages on the ward are so clean and warm and lovely. So the most likely is her heart or adverse reaction?
Dr. Susan :

Those would be my top two differentials at this point.

Customer: If it was her heart, would she have a shorter life expectancy?
Dr. Susan :

Yes, I would guess that she would have had some type of cardiac event at some point. An episode of anesthesia should not be enough to cause heart failure in a normal healthy animal.

Customer: If she just stopped breathing is that likely to be her heart?
Dr. Susan :

Respiratory arrest frequently precedes cardiac arrest.

Customer: So that could still mean a heart problem?
Dr. Susan :

Yes.

Customer: So her heart wouldnt have stopped before the breathing necessarily?
Dr. Susan :

Correct.

Customer: Thank you. You have been so lovely
Dr. Susan :

You're very welcome. If you have more questions or if I can help in any other way, please do not hesitate to ask! If you would like to accept my answer, please press RATE OUR CONVERSATION.


Please remember to only rate my answer when you are 100% satisfied. I will be happy to continue further and do everything I can to provide you with the service you seek.

Customer: Thank you. I will certainly give you the excellent service smiley face
Dr. Susan :

Why thank you. I hope that time will help you recover from this pain.

Customer: Me too, i am finding it terribly hard. But thank you xxx
Dr. Susan :

You're welcome.

Dr. Susan and other Vet Specialists are ready to help you