Pet Page | Fran’s Storyhttps://theflyer.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/Fran.jpg7501125The Flyer MagazineThe Flyer Magazinehttps://theflyer.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/Fran.jpg
Fran was only a few weeks old when she was found collapsed on the side of the road and brought in to the clinic for treatment.
She was a tiny ball of fluff with a huge personality so it wasn’t long before our vet nurse, Georgia, claimed her. During the first few weeks of taking care of Fran, it was evident that she had hearing loss, so Georgia made the decision to keep her as an indoor pet.
Some cats, especially ones that are used to the freedom of the outdoors, do not cope well when kept inside and can even develop medical conditions as a result. Thankfully, Fran was young and her owner researched ways to make an indoor lifestyle enjoyable. Environmental enrichments such as climbing frames, food puzzles and toys to play with are useful at reducing stress and unwanted behaviours. Fran’s favourite toys are ping-pong balls and she has recently got a fish tank with lots of tropical fish and coloured lights to entertain her.
When Fran was around five months old, a few weeks after her spay surgery, she started having seizures. The seizures started minor, ranging from walking in circles to periods of excitability but quickly became quite severe. There are a number of conditions that can lead to seizures in cats; the most common causes in young cats are due to infections, congenital issues or toxin exposure. Fran had a number of diagnostic tests carried out and we discovered that she had very high levels of a parasite called Toxoplasma, which we confirmed a few weeks later. Fran was treated for the parasitic infection and an anti-seizure medication called Phenobarbitone was initiated.
Unfortunately, the parasitic infection in Fran’s brain was so severe it caused permanent damage requiring long-term medication and regular blood tests to monitor her condition. When blood tests showed early signs of liver damage due to the high levels of Phenobarbitone she was on, a human drug called zonisamide was added and thankfully, with this combination and the dedication of her owner, Fran’s seizures are currently very well controlled with her only having a seizure every three months.