Monday, December 9, 2013

1253. Why does the British Shorthair vomits and lose weight over the past 3 months?

A 5-year-old British shorthair vomits now and then for the past 3 months, losing weight. What's the cause? Evidence-based medicine using blood tests need to be practised, but sometimes the owner will not consent to blood tests owing to financial considerations or the misperception that it is not necessary. Vet 1 was consulted and had advised blood tests.

The owner came to me for a second opinion as the cat still vomits, before and after eating. In this case, he agreed to having blood test done. The test showed a high total white cell count indicating a bacterial infection of the blood. After a course of antibiotics and follow up, the cat does not vomit and is gaining weight.

This is an interesting case as vomiting is usually associated with hair balls in the cat. However hair ball vomiting does not lead to weight loss and this cat was thin. So the young couple was concerned.
It could be due to cat food allergies or kidney disease too. However, the blood test indicated a bacteraemia and eliminating this blood bacterial infection results in a happy outcome.

The Singapore pet owner is much more sophisticated than in earlier years. Some are interested in a doctor's youthfulness and energy. Others want an oldie with experience. Some prefer eye candy with good bedside manners. Yet another will check on the good house-keeping of the receptionist area and beautiful renovations of a modern clinic. For others, under-pricing influences his or her decision to retain the services of the vet! Underpricing deprives the clinic of funds for renovations and upgrading and payment of the high escalating operating costs. It is a tough new world for vets in developed countries nowadays.

I had written a report on the treatment of this interesting feline case in my blog or at

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