Oscar here. Today's story is about a very sad condition that's even harder to pronounce. It's a congenital disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
A condition that impacts the hearts of cats, last week, a 20 year old came into the PPAC breathing heavily. Upon examining the cat, Dr. S. saw that the kitty's paw pads were blue. Registering fairly instantly what he was looking at, Dr. S. told the owner that sadly, the condition they were looking at was likely the aforementioned,
He explained that basically, this was a condition where a cat's heart is in rough shape thereby disrupting the blood flow to the entire body. The disturbed blood flow causes clots to be formed and the clot, when it travels down the aorta, lodges where the aorta divides to bring circulation to the hind legs. As a result, the cat's hind legs can't get the oxygen rich blood, resulting in the blue color described above. The worst part is, because cat's hind legs are typically so strong, their muscles desperately require the circulation of blood. So when the clot is thrown and they are blood deficient, it's quite painful for the pet.
To confirm his hypothesis, Dr. S. performed a chest X-ray and observed a chestful of fluids—further indication that the kitty's heart was in dire straits. Dr. S. said that sadly, the best course of action was to put the animal to sleep, and that's just what they did.
Although the cat in question was an elderly one who fortunately lived a long, wonderful life, this condition impacts cats of all ages so if you ever observe your pet collapsed with their hind legs looking wonky, bring them in ASAP—it could be the difference between life and death for your pet.
Til' next time,