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Old 10-03-2011, 08:30 AM
 
700 posts, read 2,058,311 times
Reputation: 349

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I love this forum,but have actively participated very little since losing our precious "Goldie"(orange tabby) two years ago at the age of 18 to VAS(vaccine associated sarcoma). If you went through that with us during that time period,you know what a heartbreaking ordeal it was for us. While she was still alive,we helped care for a feral/semi-feral colony,but wouldn't let them anywhere near her. Since her passing,we have opened our hearts and home up to them and over a period of time,two of them have ended up staying inside 98% of the time and we also still help several others outside. We have a feed and water station set up on our screen/sunroom with a cat door and a couple of them stay on there all night sometimes,especially in the winter months. The inside cats have become our "furkids" and one of them is a "lovebug". Both are delightful and have brought us much joy and helped us heal from our loss.The only problem is we haven't taken them to the vet yet for their healthcare needs and are torn about it. We feel they deserve healthcare,but are afraid of them over vaccinating and over treating,etc. Their ears are clipped so we know they have been neutered/spayed and had their rabies shot through the TNR(trap,neuter,release) program. My mother advised us to leave well enough alone and that's what we've been doing so far,but we have mixed emotions and feelings about it. We've always taken all our animals to the vet(dogs & cats) from the start until the end,but are rethinking if that's really necessary and whether it causes more harm than good since losing our precious Goldie to cancer caused by vaccines. I always think about the "what ifs"....what if one of them got sick and needed a vet right away and didn't have a regular one. I know that will happen sooner or later as they get older. Another concern is that they still go outside a little bit and are exposed to the others who stay outside all the time. On the flip side though,what if they over vaccinate and end up where Goldie did? They are happy and appear healthy now. Should we leave well enough alone? Has anyone else on this forum experienced what we're going through? Any good advice?
Thanks for listening and responding!
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:23 AM
 
18,868 posts, read 15,632,443 times
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I think it is great what you are doing to help ferals. I don't know an answer to your question, but will let you know, that I got my cat, Jasper a year ago, and have not taken him to the vet. He seems healthy, has been fixed, declawed, I am sure everyone will say he needs to go for "well kitty check up"...but I support 3 people, and their needs come first. Last time I took a cat to a well vet check up it was over $600, something that is not in the budget right now. Of course, he had his teeth done as well, and needed one removed...but right now, unless he is sick, he is fine. I can't even afford the dentist or doctor, so that cat is pretty far down on the list.
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:16 AM
 
78 posts, read 62,415 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasper12 View Post
I think it is great what you are doing to help ferals. I don't know an answer to your question, but will let you know, that I got my cat, Jasper a year ago, and have not taken him to the vet. He seems healthy, has been fixed, declawed, I am sure everyone will say he needs to go for "well kitty check up"...but I support 3 people, and their needs come first. Last time I took a cat to a well vet check up it was over $600, something that is not in the budget right now. Of course, he had his teeth done as well, and needed one removed...but right now, unless he is sick, he is fine. I can't even afford the dentist or doctor, so that cat is pretty far down on the list.
I am experiencing a similar situation and have befriended and domesticated a couple of strays that found us. My main concern is if you wait until they get sick,it might be too late if it's something serious.
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Old 01-25-2012, 11:46 PM
 
Location: Rural Western TN
6,123 posts, read 9,099,776 times
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for outdoor cats id personally follow a 3 year schedual. id do basic vacinations FeLV, distemper, FHV/FCV (distemper (Panleukopenia), Rhinotracheitis and Calcivirus (FHV/FCV) and rabies are "core" vaccines, typically given every year most vets are seeing that immunity lasts at least 3 years witht hs vaccines...
FeLV (feline lukemia) i only suggest for cats that spend time around other unknown cats FeLV is very contageous so even though its "none core" i would definatly consider that...
but i wouldnt do any of them more than every 3 years.


and im REALY sorry you had to go through an overvacination issue with your baby, its hard to see them suffer especially whe its a direct result of something we are led to belive is GOOD for them...*hugs*
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Old 01-26-2012, 10:21 AM
 
9,717 posts, read 6,826,593 times
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I agree with your mom completely...leave well enough alone.......the only thing I might do is get some diatomachious earth and dust them occasionally to keep the fleas off......I've never vaccinated my cats...they're all very healthy....the oldest is 14 and going strong....I'd be afraid to vaccinate her...at that age, it could be her death.
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Old 01-26-2012, 04:45 PM
 
Location: Virginia
575 posts, read 621,752 times
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I hear your problem and can identify with it. I don't think that your answer to "too much intervention" is to swing the other way and never have your cats seen by a medical professional though. Certainly finding a vet that can identify with your struggle and what you believe to be necessary or not necessary treatments.

I think that you should be able to find a vet that honors your wishes for a treatment plan. I myself do not believe in over medicating - I do not do really any vaccinations. However, mine all go in for an annual well check. They have dental care when they need it. They have blood work tested when or if they need it. I don't think you have to "over - do" However IMHO I think that you can ignore problems by not wanting to get caught up in the veterinary over kill.

My vet ( God Love Her! ) gets that I just want the basics, she never pushes, And she also knows that I am open to hear her opinion because I trust her.

For awhile after loosing my Friskie, and having a kitten recently with a vax reaction I was very inclined to panic at everything and not want much medical care. I think that is over kill just in another way. It's all about finding balance and what you are comfortable with. It sounds to me like you are not comfortable with the complete lack of any veterinary care. You'll find a balance that makes you happy.
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Old 01-27-2012, 05:31 AM
 
410 posts, read 266,870 times
Reputation: 297
Unfortunately,we have had a tragic experience waiting that I will sadly share that might be worth considering. We took one in off the street that we noticed had a little nose discharge. Since he was extremely healthy and happy,we just assumed it was probably allergies. We knew he had been fixed and had a rabies shot because his ear was clipped(a common practice in the trap/neuter/release program). We also didn't want to lose his trust in us by hauling him off to the vets office right away. To make a long,unpleasant story short,when we finally did take him to the vet, he had pneumonia! The vet said he obviously had had an upper respiratory infection that moved down to his lungs. We left him in the hospital and they did everything they could for him,but he didn't make it. He was also older than we thought and he was just too compromised. There's no telling what else he had wrong with him that we never knew because we didn't get a chance to do blood work before he passed away. We learned a very hard,valuable lesson from that sad,horrible experience. When we bring a new pet in whether off the street or otherwise the first thing we do is take it to the vet to be checked out.
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