With 26 cats living at House Of Nekko, there are always some needing medical care. The truth is cats are expensive and while we are fortunate to be able to support so many, our finances determine how many cats we rescue. HUGE REMINDER: No money raised by ZenByCat is ever used for any of the cats at House Of Nekko. Every dollar raised is used to help end FIP.
The picture above is Smokey
Cats undergoing treatments - Currently 5 out of 26.
One of our most special cats, Cookie Monster has endured many major and minor operations over her 12 years but keeps beating the odds. She is currently undergoing chemotherapy and steroid treatments for small/medium cell lymphoma. She has been getting chemo every three weeks for the past 3 months and is responding very well. Her doctors say she has a very good chance to hang around from 1-3 more years:). Given her tough history, we expect/hope for at least 4 or more.
Our most famous cat, Smokey has also endured a very difficult early life. Found abandoned and alone at 8 weeks, Smokey was nursed back to health by a rescuer from Wrigley Kittens. He then fell ill with FIP and through a lot of good luck and loving humans, Smokey was able to enter the very first anti viral drug trials to cure FIP at UC Davis in 2016. He endured 12 weeks of twice daily painful injections of the drug GC376. This drug is not yet available for use but the American drug company Anivive is working to get FDA approval for its eventual use. Smokey was one of 5 cats cured out of 20 in that first trial.
Throughout Smokeys ordeals he has remained a loving friendly cat. He is a bit timid around strangers but quickly overcomes his fears enough to come meet new humans. Unfortunately he grew fearful of some of the other cats and aggressive to several others. He also often pees outside the litter boxes. After multiple medical checks, it was determined to be anxiety and we have been trying various treatments, both homeopathic and stronger medicines with varying degrees of improvement. We have avoided any of the really strong drugs like Prozac because of Smokey's history and our general efforts to limit drugs if possible. We are currently treating him with Amitriptyline in cream form applied to his ear nightly. Regardless of his stress, Smokey lives a very happy life with 6 of the cats he has bonded with in the upstairs part of the house. We will continue our efforts to reintegrate him with the other cats. In our experience cats often lose their anxieties over years and we never stop trying but always try to do what keeps the cat happiest.
Secret is on a daily dose of Prednisolone to treat her IBD and prevent it from turning into lymphoma (like happened to Cookie Monster). She will remain on these meds for the rest of her life. At 14 years she is still going strong.
One of our shyest cats, Rumple was just diagnosed with hyperthyroidism. Giving her Prednisolone twice a day is not an option as she is really hard to catch. Because she is only 10 years old, she is a good candidate for radiological treatment that will reduce the size of her thyroid and let her live a long healthy life. The procedure involves injecting her with radioactive isotopes and then keeping her in a special hospital for the 4-8 days it takes for her to become nonradioactive. Advanced Veterinary Medical Imaging Center has really nice cat condos for the patients to wait to stop glowing (they don't really glow). She is booked for September 13th. I and my bloodied arms are happy we do not have to try to administer Prednisolone any longer. Rumple is also happy.
Our youngest medical patient is Smudge. While only 5 years old, she has suffered from severe allergies for the past year. She underwent allergy testing and came back allergic to 11 out of 64 substances tested! The treatment for the open sores that appear around her face is a topical steroid. The treatment to stop the sores from occurring has involved injections that started daily and gradually stretched to one every 3 weeks. Unfortunately she just had a relapse and her injections have been boosted back to once a week. It is likely she will need injections every few weeks for quite a while. Lucky for the two humans in the house, Smudge does not mind the shots at all. We are grateful to Dr Jean Greek of the Dermatology and Allergy Clinic for Animals for taking such good care of Smudge.
Our other 21 cats are healthy and receive yearly physicals. We are grateful to have such dedicated veterinarians who take care of all the House Of Nekko cats. Dr Hillary Quinn and Dr Evelyn Brand from the Goleta Airport Animal Hospital go to great lengths to keep our cats healthy. They even come to House Of Nekko once a year to do physicals. A shout out to the many vet techs at all the hospitals and clinics that also help keep our cats healthy. A very special thanks to Ashleigh of Airport Animal Hospital.