It’s hard to believe that I’m already writing my end-of-the-year blog post. Every year seems like time has just whizzed by, but 2014 really zoomed by exceptionally fast.
I made a concerted effort to read more books in 2014 than I did in 2013, and it worked. This year, I read 30 books! I gave each one my personal star rating, from 1 to 5, with five stars being the highest. Rather than list them in the order that I read them, I’ll list them from best rating to worst.
Friday, December 26, 2014
Saturday, December 20, 2014
Dear Dr. Plotnick,
My 12-year-old cat Molly has just been diagnosed with small-cell intestinal lymphoma, following a surgical biopsy. What can I expect in terms of treatment and prognosis? Thank you very much.
Susan M. S.
Thursday, December 18, 2014
Dear Dr. Plotnick,
My cat broke her paw and she had surgery within 24 hours of it happening. She is recovering (surgery was a week ago today) and she seems to be getting back to herself a little more every day. She is eating, drinking and cuddling and resting most importantly. Can you please let me know when a cat has surgery on her paw wrist, uses the splint from 2 – 3 weeks and does the proper rest for 8 – 10 weeks - are the chances good for a full recovery? I am very concerned for her and want her to be ok – I am of course just very worried about her well-being. What do you think?
Tuesday, December 9, 2014
Monday, December 8, 2014
My first appointment of the morning was to see Gypsy, a 5 year old neutered male Siamese owned by Gail Harstein. The chief complaint written in the appointment book was the vaguely worded “hairball problem”. In the exam room, I asked Gail to elaborate.
“He’s been trying to cough up a hairball for weeks”, said Gail, “but nothing comes up.” As a feline practitioner, I hear the mistakenly used phrase “coughing up a hairball” at least once a week. Hairballs live in the stomach. Cats vomit hairballs. Vomiting is associated with the gastrointestinal system. Coughing is derived from the lungs; it is associated with the respiratory system. When I hear the phrase “coughing up a hairball”, further questioning is necessary to determine whether the cat is vomiting or coughing. Gail described what she was seeing. “He hunkers down, extends his neck, and makes a raspy noise a few times. After about a minute, he’s done, and he trots off on his merry way”, she said. This was a classic description of a coughing cat. Any ambiguity was further dispelled when Gail followed with, “Here, I took a video.” In this age of smartphones, anything can be recorded instantly, and Gail’s short video was definitive: ten seconds of Gypsy coughing his head off. I told Gail that there are several potential causes for coughing, but in a young Siamese cat, feline asthma is at the top of the list.