The Norman Transcript

Features

March 28, 2013

Reader wonders if cat has flea allergy or hyperthyroidism

NORMAN — Dear Dr. Fox: I adopted two sweet sister cats nine years ago — Chase and Chochi. They’ve not had any major health issues until recently. They are indoor cats, although they are allowed to go out on our deck with us.

More than a year ago, I noticed Chase had lost some fur on her lower abdomen. Shortly after, we embarked on a home renovation that was loud, dusty and forced us to leave our Maryland home for several months and move into a vacation home in West Virginia.

In West Virginia, I found a vet who said Chase was overgrooming due to a flea saliva allergy. She recommended Comfortis. She also noticed Chochi was overgrooming the same area, so both cats began the drug.

Neither cat improved, so we went back to the vet, who found Chase, in particular, had redness and a possible staph overgrowth. Blood work on Chase was normal. Both cats received antibiotic injections, two doses one week apart.

Chochi improved, but Chase began removing more fur. She received a shot of steroids and two laser treatments. The vet also recommended resuming the Comfortis, and the redness went away.

We moved back to Maryland, and Chase continued to overgroom. She now has bare-looking thighs, abdomen and upper chest. I took her to a vet two weeks ago, and this vet observed that Chase had no noticeable irritation and diagnosed her as having “psychogenic alopecia.” She recommended continuing the flea treatment and starting with a homeopathic remedy. It seems to have had no effect. The next recommendation was Prozac.

Help! Since the cats are essentially indoor cats, I have wondered about the accuracy of the flea allergy diagnosis and treatment. I have never seen a flea, although at the start of the treatment ordeal, the vet did observe some possible flea casings in Chase’s fur. The deck in West Virginia occasionally gets mouse and squirrel visits; the Maryland deck has only birds.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Features
  • Senior organizations that appeal to conservatives

    Dear Savvy Senior, Can you recommend any advocacy organizations for seniors other than AARP? I cut up my AARP card a few years back when they supported Obamacare and am now looking for another organization that better represents me....

    July 29, 2014

  • Seniors adjust to different sleep patterns

    According to the National Institutes of Health, older adults need seven to nine hours of sleep each night. However, sleep patterns change with age; this is often evident in the nursing home population. Frequent causes of interrupted sleep ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Ceremony marks opening of community center

    A July 23 ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the addition of another feature to the Chickasaw Nation Carter service campus in Ardmore....

    July 27, 2014

  • Chickasaw Cultural Center a terrific place to visit

    SULPHUR — The Chickasaw Cultural Center is a magnificent tribute to a proud people and their storied heritage. Located an easy hour’s drive south from Norman, it’s among the finest travel destinations in Oklahoma. Set on 109 scenic acres, ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Prisoner re-entry planning for offenders with mental illness

    People leaving incarceration face a variety of challenges even without a diagnosis of mental illness. But for those who face mental health issues, re-entry into society can be troublesome. That is the topic in the first of the 2014 Fall ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Exhibit takes families on food expedition

    If your palate enjoys culinary diversity or if you’re interested in introducing new flavors to your family, join the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History in tasting international delights and create your own treat during Family ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Resident makes art in new home

    There’s an old saying about a picture being “worth a thousand words,” which took on a literal meaning recently....

    July 27, 2014

  • Parents should work on themselves first

    I absolutely love it when people begin to realize that the problems they’re having with a child are of their own making; when they begin to realize, in other words, that the child is not the problem — they are. All this time (however long ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Helping cat with first veterinarian visit

    Dear Dr. Fox: A stray kitty adopted me a couple months ago and has since been tamed enough that I have found a vet to neuter him and do some much-needed dental work. My fear is that the poor boy will be so traumatized by this ordeal that ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Veterans Corner needs volunteer to drive residents to OKC VA

    Veterans Corner volunteer of the week David Sudduth has been with us for the last eight years. He is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force who served during the Vietnam War. David and his wife, Carolyn, have had their home in the Newalla area ...

    July 23, 2014