Thursday, 28 February 2013

Leap of Faith

"Healing takes courage, and we all have courage, even if we have to dig a little to find it." - Tori Amos

I wrote this just before Mishka died on Feb 1st but I've decided to post it unchanged. Update: a few edits and see the comment from Dusty's mum below!
Dusty is the reason we are treating Mishka. Dusty survived wet FIP of the lungs in part thanks to injections of feline interferon and oral prednisone in 2007. I first wrote about him in a post about

Virbac sent me the case history and amazingly here was a cat I could believe in because I knew the vet practice in Sydney (I think my mum even took our old cat there on occasion. Chloe was a stray my brother took in who lived to be 17 on a commercial diet without ever getting regular vaccinations btw)  so I phoned the vet, Simon Craig who verified the cat was still kicking and had made it off the interferon. Based on Dusty's outcome we did the math and decided we could afford the treatment on the basis of expecting a dead cat or a cure in a little over two weeks - but there you have it, each case is unique and Mishka has not progressed as well - but she's not dead either, so the budget is completely blown by five months worth of extra drugs. We have apparently converted an acute illness into a chronic one - as allopathic medicine does so well.

Possibly due to her more advanced disease ( she has abdominal FIP as well) her own genetic challenges (she is a Birman, Dusty is a Scottish Fold) or that two week delay or not using the steroids first up. Dr Addie does mention in her wet fip case study, which I only recently read, that the wet FIP response to FOI is higher for cats with FIP of the lungs, and doesn't seem to work as well on abdominal FIP.

My suspicion is this is because abdominal FIP can be cryptic for longer in that area without causing distress. Mishka had abdominal fluid for a few weeks to a month perhaps before we knew she was sick.

It wasn't until her lungs really filled up that we rushed to the vet. Perhaps she was also dehydrated somewhat and thirstier than usual. Here she is the night before, mucking about and looking ok:

She may have been sick for much longer as the earliest signs are so hard to detect as abnormal, if indeed they were - she started being more sleepy (thought that was natural as a cat growing older and not being a kitten any longer), more cuddly and purry - well she got to know us and that's a nice thing, she was very hungry and insisted on 4 am snacks - well she's a growing cat. She got so chubby she was stuck in her cat door - that was cute (ok my son had at that stage twigged something was up. "mum Mishka is not a cat anymore" ? "Definition of a cat - fits anywhere the head fits" ??!!! )
Definition of a cat - fits anywhere the head fits

 Mishka's Leap of Faith

and so we followed the example of Dusty. I feel like a cartoon character that's headed over the cliff - can't stop running to look down now or gravity will reassert itself. Hoping to make it to the other side on pure momentum. Courage kitty - leap!


  1. Hi I;m the owner of Dusty and so sorry you lost Mishka, but glad Dusty gave you some hope of a miracle as Dusty certainly has shown to be one.

    Im not sure if his diet has helped but have never feed him dried food only fresh meat, chicken, beef & lamb and tinned cat fish with no preservatives, usually Ultimates.

    Dusty is obviously a miracle cat and I'm not sure why but yes he has had no interferon for a year now and Simon doesn't want to give him anymore.

    Not sure if you wish to contact me but I;m not very blog savy so dont know how to contact you

  2. How is Dusty in 2015.I was told today that my cat probably has FIP and was given a test plus prednisone and eye drops. I wast old she would live maybe 6 months to a year.

  3. My cat has wet fip now and he is only 2


"Do you believe in immortality? No, and one life is enough for me." - Albert Einstein
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