Things that keep me from quilting #11: Severe cat reactions to vaccinations

NOTE: If you have found this post through a search for “cat reactions to vaccinations” or something similar, STOP!

If your cat (or dog) is experiencing any of the following symptoms after a vaccination, take your pet back to the vet IMMEDIATELY:

  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • whitish or pale gums in the mouth
  • facial swelling or hives
  • rapid or difficult breathing
  • restlessness or difficulty settling down

The above symptoms may mean that your pet is going in to anaphylactic shock and needs IMMEDIATE medical attention to survive!

Severe reactions to vaccinations can be life threatening and are a medical emergency! Don’t wait and wonder, have your pet checked by a veterinarian ASAP!

My cat had a severe reaction to a rabies shot (I firmly believe), and only immediate medical attention saved his life. Though I’m not a vet, I’ve had cats all my life and I’ve done the research about the symptoms. Please, take care of your pet NOW, and then come back and read this post!

ALSO: Even if your pet wasn’t recently vaccinated, any of the above symptoms can still indicate a potentially life threatening condition, and your pet should be seen by a veterinarian! Insect bites or stings (and many other things as well) can also trigger anaphylactic shock, and your pet may have been stung without your knowledge. Take care of your pet NOW, and then come back and read this post!


Monday wasn’t pretty. The rest of the week hasn’t been quite as bad, but it’s not been a picnic either. But back to Monday’s issues: I took Patches and Shadow to the American vet on the Army post to have their shots. Now I usually (at least for the last year or so) don’t even do this because they don’t ever go outside, and they only see each other, and I’m still not completely convinced that it wasn’t a vaccination a couple of years ago that made Patches so sick and nearly caused his death. Yes, he was THAT sick. The vet says the vaccination was probably not the cause, but probably isn’t certainly.

This year, because of the move, I decided that vaccinations would probably be a good idea, despite my misgivings about Patches. There will be a lot of people wandering in and out of the house, so you never know what could happen with a cat getting out the door, and the house we’re moving into has been home to at least one dog for many years and who knows what kinds of germs or whatnot are there in the new house. So off to the vet we went.

After waiting over an hour to get seen, the staff then tried to tell me that the reason for the wait was because they had a military working dog come in to be seen. Um, right, would that be the one I saw walk through the door, unassisted and obviously not in need of any emergency care, about 15 minutes ago? Such great service we get here from the Army.

We finally saw the vet, and we chit-chatted about general health issues like teeth and weight and the like. Yes, Patches is still the fat boy at 17.5 lbs., but Shadow has finally outgrown his baby fat and is perfectly sized at 10.5 lbs, just like I figured he would be, though the German vet kept telling me he was too fat as well.

The vet gave them their shots and away we went toward home. Now remember that they’ve been in the cages for, hmmm, let’s see, over 2.5 hours at this point and are stressed. We arrived at home only to find that Shadow had used the cage as a litter box, and that was only the beginning of his symptoms over the next couple of hours, which included vomiting and diarrhea all over the house, and hives and facial swelling. He was having a severe reaction to one of the shots, probably the rabies vaccination, and going into anaphylactic shock. Continue reading Things that keep me from quilting #11: Severe cat reactions to vaccinations


Not much quilting, just kitty nursing

Patches, in happier daysToday was one of those days where I despair of getting anything done at all. Poor Patches had to spend part of the morning at the veterinarian’s office for an exploratory teeth cleaning. The vet decided to remove two of this teeth, and when I picked him up he wasn’t doing too well. I spent the day either driving back and forth to the vet (three hours total, in two chunks), or keeping cats separated.

Shadow is still young enough that when I brought Patches home all groggy from the vet, I thought it would be best to keep them apart, since the last thing Patches needed was to have Shadow jumping all over him. Patches seems to be feeling better now, though he’s starving and I can’t feed him yet because of his teeth. And other than that, he hates me because I’m the bad mommy who stuck him in the cage and took him to the bad place that made him hurt. I hate it when I have to be the bad mommy.

Now the vet is recommending a special prescription diet for him because it’s official: he’s obese. Yeah, so he weighs 18+ pounds, but he’s just a big cat. Or so I keep telling myself, and anyone else who inquires as to his fitness level. When he came to live here, we think he was 8-9 months old, and he weighed 12 pounds, which was already pretty big. Neutering and an indoor life have taken it’s toll on his girlish figure, leaving him a bit, shall we say, portly? Good thing he’s not much of a lap cat.

It’s not like I haven’t tried to make him skinny. I’ve been buying Science Diet Adult Light for years, to little or no effect. He never gets table scraps, and he always seems hungry. I try to play with him, but he’s lazy (maybe because he’s so fat?!?), and he doesn’t climb the cat tree anymore since it fell out from under him twice a couple of years ago when ITMan didn’t get it solidly installed between the floor and ceiling. I’m sure you’ve seen those pics of kitties hanging from tree branches that say “Hang in there baby” right? That was poor Patches, hanging from the cat tree as it swayed. Continue reading Not much quilting, just kitty nursing

Doing what they do best

Sometimes I think “everything I need to know I learned from my cats.” We should follow their example, and do what we do best:

Shadow and Patches

This picture is remarkable, but obviously not because they’re sleeping. They’re very good at that part. No, what’s truly amazing is that they’re doing it together. They’re on top of my ironing board in front of the shelf full of quilting stuff, which is usually reserved for Patches alone. I have to help Shadow understand that frequently, since he usually gets up there to start trouble, not sleep. This evening I came back to the studio after dinner, and there they were on the board together. Definitely a noteworthy moment, since they’ve only been this close together (calmly, without the claws and teeth) for any length of time once before in the last year and a half. ZZZzzz…

Quilting with Patches and Shadow: Helping out

Shadow helping with the crystalsIt’s been awhile since the last Quilting with Patches and Shadow update, but here’s a good one for you. I’m working on the Swarovski crystals on the Grasping Reality: Fifteen quilt, and of course, Shadow has to be right in the middle of it all.

‘Course, Shadow has to be in the middle of everything, really. He’s just that kind of cat. Patches is content to be in the same room with me, and if I get up and leave the room, he waits a bit to see if I’ll come back right away (like maybe it was just a short trip to the bathroom or something). Not so with Shadow. If I leave the room he’s on my heels, and when I come out of the bathroom, he’s sitting across the doorway where I have to step over him to get by.

I’m not so sure I’m fond of this little cat at all; we definitely haven’t bonded at this point. Maybe when he grows out of the “kitten stupids” and quits waking me up every night scratching on things and generally being rotten, sometimes three or four times a night, we’ll be better friends.

Quilting with Patches and Shadow: Back to normal, I think


I think we may be getting back to normal with the kitty boys around here finally. Now that I’ve quit treating Patches for the feline acne, it’s going away. I think it was stress related. I suspect that his immune system being low was what started the whole thing, and then we just kept fighting the calicivirus and then the acne to the point that the poor cat was feeling hunted and persecuted. Poor thing; I was having to give him medicine twice a day sometimes, and then take him to the vet at least once a week, so it’s no wonder he was stressed. So, I’m crossing my fingers that we’re seeing the last of the kitty sickness for a good long while and Patches will be back to his chipper normal self very soon.

Quilting with Patches and Shadow: On the mend

Sometimes they're friends...

I haven’t written much about the kitties in awhile, maybe because I just didn’t want to think about the whole thing too much, or maybe I was already thinking about it too much and didn’t want to write about it too. We’re still battling sickness, but I think we’re getting closer to to healthy every day. Crossing my fingers, anyway. Continue reading Quilting with Patches and Shadow: On the mend