My Name is Leo

An adored cat deals gracefully with a jaw tumor while his owner quietly falls apart.

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Location: Philadelphia area, Northeast, United States

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Four Month Mark

Yesterday marked four months since Leo's jaw tumor was found on an x-ray.

I wish I had better news for this milestone. The tumor has grown noticeably in the past week or so. He doesn't seem to be able to close his mouth completely. As a result, the thick awful-swelling mucus-looking drool is leaking out the front of his mouth nearly continuously and his chin is pretty much always wet from it.

Up until last night, he was still eating well. But he had a bit of blood coming out last night after I gave him his antibiotic-compounded treat, and then he really didn't eat much of anything of his evening meal. This morning, there was another drip of blood out of his mouth -- enough that it actually left tiny spots of blood on the carpet...and thus far today he's eaten maybe half of his morning meal, and a bit of last night's that I left out for him.

But, Leo continues to take everything in stride, as you can see from his come-hither-and-pet-me pose this afternoon. If he is having any significant discomfort, he is hiding it well. He continues to groom (even though he ends up spreading the thick and smelling goo on his fur and it ends up in clumps) and he wants to be held and scratched and purrs in appreciation.

He's almost at the end of this course of Clindamycin antibiotic, and I'm thinking of trying Baytril again to see if a different antibiotic would at least gets rid of the god-awful smell of his mucus drool. (It really is the worst odor ever.)

The Baytril disrupted his appetite before, but if he's already not eating that much (and I'm sensing his lack of eating has to do with the bleeding, not nausea, since he meowed outside my door for an hour this morning starting at 5:30 AM to try and get me to feed him) I guess it can't hurt his food intake that much.

Oh, at least the fur is growing back on the bald spot on his chin. No more self-mutilating scratching going on...


Blogger toastie said...

Hi, I just came across your blog for Leo and read through it. As the owner of two middle-aged cats (10 and 8), I know that health issues will come in the next few years, and I dread it. Leo seems like a tough boy, and I hope he can continue to give you and your family lots of joy for a long time to come. - Dave

5/24/2006 10:54 PM  
Blogger Cyn said...

Thanks Dave :)

5/25/2006 9:24 AM  
Blogger BarbaraNJ said...

I just sent my boy to Rainbow Bridge 5 days ago because of a jaw tumor. He would have turned 21 in Oct. The pics of Leo look exactly like those of my sweet boy. My boys tumor grew in 3 weeks.
He was unable to eat and drooled tons, plus his tongue was pushed all the way to the side like Leos.
I know by now Leo may be with my furbaby.

Im so sorry this ugly disease got both our kids,


9/13/2013 12:43 AM  
Blogger Cyn said...

Barbara, I apologize for the extremely-belated reply. So sorry to hear about your furbaby...I hope that the pain of your loss has eased a bit in the ensuing months (although I know from my experience with Leo that it will never go away completely.) It does make me smile to think of a place over the rainbow bridge where our beautiful golden kitties are running, or just generally lounging, together.

2/21/2014 8:19 AM  

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