Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Tanner Tuesday

Tanner continues to do well with his treatments!  This week is rest week, so only a blood draw was needed yesterday.  His levels are all good still.  Next week, a repeat ultrasound will be done to see how his cancer is responding to the treatment, and he will more than likely start round two of the chemo protocol.
Last night Tanner was playing hard with his crinkle balls...here are a few short clips.
Playing with the ball until it disappears under the stove...

Auntie saves the day and retrieves the stuff from under the stove.  (Ignore the pieces of dry kibble that emerge!)

Tanner picks his favorite and continues playing!

If the videos don't work above...here are the links to them on YouTube

Monday, August 25, 2014

Mancat Monday

This monday will feature the ever budding relationship between Oliver and Tanner.  These two are just smitten with one another, and love to lay close together, wash each other and sometimes play.  Here are some examples of cuteness...
Brothers helping me work on some scrapbook pages... 
Brothers washing...sometimes this turns into a whapping show, but not always :) 
Oliver would like to point out that he is almost officially a mancat...this photo was taken on Friday, and he is 11 months old!!
Here's a washing video...

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Tanner Tuesday

Yesterday was Tanner's day to spend at the vet school, and he did great!  His day started with a blood draw, and the values all looked good.  Chemo this week was administered through IV and is called Doxorubicin.  This is one of the stronger drugs he is getting, so we are on the lookout for side effects.  They can kick in 2-5 days out from treatment.  We are purring that he tolerates this newest drug as well as all the rest!
The cardiology team stopped by and checked his blood pressure.  I mentioned to the technician, when Tanner checked in, that he is looking pale again, especially in the mornings.  Wondering if another tweak to the heart meds will be needed...
When I went to pick Tanner up, I asked if I could go to the back and see where he is hanging out for the day.  I was allowed and Tanner has a nice space!  There is the standard bank of metal cages along the wall, but his is quite large and is on the upper level, so dogs can't sniff him.  He had water, the food I brought (but he wouldn't eat), a can of food he suckered them into giving him, a litter pan, and a box turned on it's side if he wanted to feel more secure.  I thought they had done everything they could to make his stay pleasant and comfortable for him!  Sorry I didn't get a picture.
He is one of just a few cats that the oncolocy department is treating.  The doctor said that most cats are too advanced when the cancer is found, and so owners don't want to pursure treatment.  So, we are lucky with Tanner that his cancer was found before problems became visible.  I hope the students and doctors are learning lots from Tanner!
Many of you mentioned in the comments about how lucky we were to have a vet school so close by, and you are right.  We are extremely blessed.  The Vet School at North Carolina State University is only 20-30 minutes from my house, depending on traffic.  The school is consistently ranked in the top 5 in the country as well.  I love the care and attention my boys get while there!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Mancat Monday

The Black Tornado strikes again!
Thankfully no one was hurt!  We know Ollie was involved because he was afraid to go down the hall for several hours...
Unfortunately, it is not our table, but a friend storing it while she is in the process of moving!

Poor innocent looking baby Ollie...did I do that?

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Tanner Tuesday

Yesterday would have been chemo day for Tanner.  He went to the vet school in the morning, but when I filled out his paperwork, I had to mention that he was sneezing some and had developed a runny eye.  They felt it was best not to stress him more with chemo, so he came home with some antibiotics and we will go back next week to try again.  They still did his blood work, and that is looking good.
In paleness news...he is looking pinker lately!  We had stopped his heart meds while I was out of town, and are weaning back on now, so I believe they are the culprits of the paleness.  We are trying a half dose of his atenolol to see if it controls the heart rate enough without taking it too low.  We have also switched from Enalapril to Benazepril.  These drugs do the same thing for Tanner, but the Benazepril is processed through the liver instead of the kidneys, so in the long run may be better for him.  With him being at the vet school each week for the cancer, the cardiologist can pop in more often as check on him too.  They are doing a great job of working together!
He continues to eat well, play, and love on his baby, Ollie.  Life is good for Tanner at the moment, and we hope to keep it this way!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Mancat Monday

Today will demonstrate once again why our blog is called "Four Crazy Cats", with an emphasis on the CRAZY!
Here is Smokey, in the bed...notice what is laying in front of him...a dryer sheet.  I had been folding clothes and left one behind.  Smokey found it.  He has always loved a dryer sheet, and what does he do with them, you might be asking... 
He sniffs them!  He rubs his face on them and cuddles with them!  He is CRAZY!  But hey, whatever makes you happy, right?

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Tanner Tuesday

Well, I have made it back to the US, and trying to get everything sorted our from my wonderful trip to Kenya.  I'm hoping the boys will let me steal the blog a couple of days to tell you all about it! 
Today,  I know you are wondering about Tanner.  Here goes...I called the vet school on Tuesday, July 22nd to set up his appointment for when I returned, but they insisted I not wait.  I had taken Wednesday off work, so I took him over that morning for a consult.  Tanner has Renal Lymphoblastic Lymphoma, to be exact, and is considered an oncology emergency.  The Lymphoblastic part makes his cancer rare and aggressive.  The prognosis is guarded even with treatment, but since Tanner came to the clinic not having any real symptoms of being sick, they hope this will increase his survival chances.
He started chemo the day before we left, and had a second dose yesterday.  He has also now started on Prednisolone twice a day.  His chemo protocol is called CHOP.  He receives 4 different medications, one chemo each week for three weeks, while taking the pred all the time.  Then repeat.
Week One - Vincristine (IV)
Week Two - Cyclophosphamide (pills)
Week Three - Doxorubicin (IV)
Week Four - Rest week
On chemo day, I drop him at the vet school where they do a CBC to make sure his blood values are ok to receive chemo.  The team consult to make sure he is still doing well, then the chemo is administered.  I pick him up in the afternoon.
So far, he is doing well with the meds.  We have nausea and diarrhea meds at the house to use as needed, but so far, so good.
Tanner is going to need lots of purrs to pull through this, but as long as he is feeling well, and tolerating the meds, we will continue to fight for him.  We will do a repeat ultrasound after either the first of second rounds of treatment to see how he is responding, and make more decisions at that time.