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Ask Dr Scott Nimmo Your Own Question
Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Small Animal Veterinary Surgeon.
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 21527
Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
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Hi all, hope you can help. I have just returned from a few

Customer Question

Hi all, hope you can help. I have just returned from a few days away to my cat who was being looked after by a friend. I think he used my lounge and I opened my lounge door to let my cat in there, her tail scraped a small amount of white dust off my coffee table which she licked. I assume horribly that it may have been a small amount of cocaine which didn't get cleared up. Her behaviour suddenly seems a bit strange, faster breathing and rolling on her back and more jittery movements, she is however able to settle down on my lap. I may well be completely wrong but am concerned and have worked myself up a bit now. Her breathing is about 30/40 per minute and she is purring. Any advice you can give to determine her comfort and happiness levels? Really hope I'm wrong but am worried, any help at all
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 4 years ago.

Scott Nimmo :

Hello and welcome, my name is Scott and I am an experienced small animal veterinary surgeon, I will be very pleased to work with you today and will try my best to answer your question to your satisfaction.

JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : Hi Scott?
Scott Nimmo :

This seems a strange question under the circumstances but please bear with me .... Has she been spayed?

JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : I know it i
JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : I appreciate it is unusual, she hasn't been spayed no
Scott Nimmo :

OK well I will be very pleased to talk over the white dust situation but I have one thought. I do wonder if Pep is not in season, Unless she is spayed or pregnant a female cat is likely to come into season for about three days each three weeks and they will typically have their first season from five or six months of age.

The typical signs would be :

1. The cat becomes more affectionate than usual.
2. Your cat rolls around the floor.

3. She carries her tail to one side.

4. The cat becomes very vocal and meows a lot. { Calling } This vocalisation can become very noisy with loud yowls day and night. Her voice may become more piercing than usual.

5. Your cat assumes a position with her hind end in the air and may pad with her back legs.

6. She may lick her genital area more and may urinate more.

Scott Nimmo :

Does any of that sound as if it might be what is going on?

JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : She has shown each of those behaviours in the past, however what worries me is her behaviour does seem out of character even for that, specifically her breathing seems faster and she is purring much less, she also seems to be trembling very slightly
Scott Nimmo :

The signs of being in season for a cat would be variable but it could well include rolling on her back and faster breathing ...

JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : She is however still vocal and purring, she has also eaten and is responding to me
JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : Would my absence and return tonight noticeably change her actions?
Scott Nimmo :

Well it is possible she may have ingested a small amount of cocaine powder but a small amount such as you describe would not be fatal but could cause some of the symptoms you have described as well. if this is the case you would expect the symptoms to pass 24 -48 hours after the ingestion of the cocaine and then she would return to normal.

Scott Nimmo :

If she is in season then that will also pass in a couple of days ...

Scott Nimmo :

It could be of course that she is just pleased to see you after you being away ...

Scott Nimmo :

Of course it could also represent some disease situation or other ...

Scott Nimmo :

OK -- what to do about it ? Let me type up my opinion

JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : We're she uncomfortable, would she definitely not be vocal purring and affectionate?
JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : By the way she is also a very small female, around 65% the common size as an estimation
Scott Nimmo :

The fact she is vocal and purring and eating is very encouraging. I think you would be taking very little risk if you were to just to monitor Pep over the next 48 hours and see what happens. If she return to normal after that time then just forget the issue, but if you are still concerned after 48 hours or she deteriorates in any way then you should have your vet check her over ...

Scott Nimmo :

The bottom line is that nothing you have told me so far sounds very serious { Thankfully } :-)

Scott Nimmo :

If she is purring and affectionate then the chances are she is feeling OK

JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : Ok thank you, where are you based should I require a vet?
JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : I must say though your advice seems a bit all encompassing, is there a tell tale sign of her being uncomfortable or hurt in any way?
Scott Nimmo :

I so wish I could visit and check her over, I am British qualified and have been a vet for many years. However I am typing this from the island of Mindanao which is in the South China Seas. { I treat street dogs and cats here }

Scott Nimmo :

Just follow your instincts, cats rarely hide their feelings, if she is affectionate and eating then the chances are she is feeling fine, sick cats are often depressed and reluctant to eat ..

JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : Thank you, where did you qualify in the uk?
Scott Nimmo :

The cocaine powder may or may not be a part of it, but if it is it does seem very minor ..

Scott Nimmo :

I qualified from Glasgow in 1980 ...

JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : I also study in Glasgow! Caledonian or city Uni? Thank you for your help
Scott Nimmo :

Well in those days our first year was at the main university up from Byers Road but we then went to the vet school at Bearsden, happy days drinking along Byers Road. I have a very different life now .. What subject do you study?

Scott Nimmo :

Anyway I am very glad to have advised you today, I will be on-line for at least the next three or four hours so get straight back to me if things change at all, and I will be back in touch with you in a couple of days to check how Pep got on ...

JACUSTOMER-lsh2b9lb- : Excellent could you please clarify the cost of this consultation
Scott Nimmo :

Actually I just deal with the clients and give advice the transaction cost and administration are handled by the Just Answer company but from this end it looks like the cost would be around $39.00 US . but I cannot be sure it would depend on what you first entered the site,

Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 4 years ago.
Hello again Nic,

I am just getting back in touch to see how Pep is getting on.

How are things going at present?