Wednesday, December 7, 2011

782. The cat with foul-smelling ears claws the owner ferociously

"My cat cannot walk properly, hunching her back and not walking normally with the hind body upright. What is the problem?"

The cat walked with hind limbs low on the floor as if stalking a prey. Hind limb lameness. Why?

As I did a full body check, the cat's ears were strongly smelling of bad rotten flesh. "Did you get the ears treated?" I asked the lady.

"I consulted the vets (at another practice) twice," the woman said to me. "They give me ear drops. The cat scratches me when I tried applying the ear drops. I gave up."

On the surface, it seems that ear infections and lameness are not related. Yet if you think about being a cat. What would you do if you have such painful smelly ears over the last few months? You would try to relieve your itchy ears with your back paws. Both ears. Both paws. You do it so often and over the months. Would you not strain your hind limbs and joints? Ear drops were not applied. You claw your owners for doing it. So, in time, you feel the back pain in trying to relieve your ear itchiness and hurt your back muscles. So you slink when you walk. Can't walk upright. A hypothesis.

That's my theory. "I will sedate the cat after a day of antibiotics and anti-mite injection," I said to the owner. It was a surprise to her that I had proposed this approach as she expected me to prescribe "ear drops".

Today, 2nd day. The ear stench was much reduced. The cat still clawed but much less. The right ear had lots of wax and debris. Will irrigate the ears under anaesthesia and hope that this will help the cat not to sufer any more pain. The last option would be surgery to open up the vertical ear canal. But not now. Wait and see after ear irrigation and painkiller/antibioitc medication which is a simple way.

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