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Cat: Buddy
male, Tuxedo

Type of Lymphoma:
High Grade Intestinal

FeLV Status:

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Buddy's Case Study  

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Story: Buddy is a 4 1/2 year old male Tuxedo cat. He was a feral cat that came to us as a youngster almost 4 years ago. It took around 6 months for him to come close enough for me to even pet him. I was told that he would probably never be a lovey lap kitty being feral they aren't domesticated easily. Once he adopted me I took him to the vet for a check up and shots. The vet checked him for FIV and FeLV. He came back FeLV +. And we were given the option to put him down ... I already loved him and the odds for a long healthy life were good so why????

Anyhow, we had Buddy neutered and he became an indoor cat. His weight went from 9.5 lbs to 15 lbs within the first year. Buddy became MY cat with head bonks all day and sleeping on top of me all night (so much for ferals not being domesticated). His weight stayed at 15 lbs until 2 weeks before his diaginosis when he lost 2 lbs and had loose stool 2x (that NEVER happened before). He saw his Vet on April 26, 2007 and I told her what had been happening. See drew blood (all normal) took temp (normal as well) and said she felt a mass in his abdomen so we had an x-ray taken that showed a 7-10cm mass in his small intestine. UGH... I still feel sick when I think of that moment!!!

The following morning he had an ultrasound and needle biopsy. She told us that it was Lymphoma and being that he is FeLV+ the outcome wasn't good. She didn't recomend removing the tumor due to it's location very close to the colon (Ileum). I decided immediately to see an Oncologist and I cried nonstop for the next 3 days thinking he was leaving me. Our appt was for that Tuesday April 30th AM but as of Monday he hadn't moved his bowels in 3 days.

I called the hospital where he was seeing the Oncologist the next AM and they said to get him there asap. He was examined by the vet on call. He let me take Buddy home for the night he gave me antibiotics and said no food after 10pm in case we all opt for surgery.

Indeed we did. The Oncologist weighed our options and said being he is healthy and strong now (temp, blood work, appetite strong etc..) we should try to get it out now rather then risking Chemo which could weaken him (esp. being FeLV+). My Buddy was operated on Tuesday May 1st. The surgeon called and said he removed the tumor, he did very well and was resting. They also removed an enlarged lymphnode and they took a biopsy of his bone marrow so we would know what exactly we were dealing with once he healed from this surgery. We took Buddy home to recover 2 days later and received the results from all of the testing. It was confirmed High Grade Intestinal lymphoma, the lymphnode showed no evidence of lymphoma and his bone marrow was fine as well. I was so sad and confused so I went online and found this site as well as the Yahoo group. I helped me so much to talk to others who were dealing with the same issues.

We started Buddy on Chemo (Wisconsin Madison Protocol) On May 15th. He has had a couple of postponements due to low WBC and Low Neutrophil count but otherwise he has been handling the chemo very well (knock on air). We have also had 2 Ultrasounds done to be sure he is still clear and with both he showed no evidence of the lymphoma returning. Today Novemeber 27, 2007 was Buddy's 2nd to last treatment with this protocol and he is doing GREAT!! I know that every minute I have with him is a gift and I treat it that way... I still act like a crazy over protective mom at times (taking his temp when he feels warm and switching his food if he seems to be finicky etc) but he is my best friend and giving me his love unconditionally, he has given me so much more that I could ever possibly give him. Every night I pray for our babies to be healthy and safe and for a cure for this dreadful disease.

Outcome: November 2007, Buddy is in good health and astonishes all of us including his Oncologist. He has a great appetite loves to be loved and to give love, plays with his toys almost all "night" and he still runs to the door to meet me every day.

- By Dianne Buddy's Mom -
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