You may remember that Nestle has had issues over the last year which include weight loss despite eating more than normal, increased stool and diarrhea, motion sickness when riding in the car and not always using her litter box.  She had blood work done three times over the last year and it was always normal, but the dramatic weight loss meant something was wrong so the next step was to make an appointment with a specialist (an Internist).

The Picture Shows That Nestle Is Very Thin
The Picture Shows That Nestle Is Very Thin

Unfortunately I had to wait about a month for the appointment with the specialist.  I had the option to go to the ER and seek treatment that way, but Nestle was always alert and active so I elected to wait for the appointment which was a couple of weeks ago.

Nestle Sees The Internist

The Internist examined Nestle and said it could be a few different things.  She felt it could be something as simple as a B12 deficiency, or an Irritable Bowel Disease, an issue with her adrenal gland or her pancreas, or cancer.  The vet suggested an ultrasound and additional blood work.  We also discussed the possibility of a biopsy, but I declined to go that route because if the ultrasound showed suspected cancer or an IBD, the treatment is basically the same.

Nestle would not cooperate and was too wiggly to have her tummy shaved for the ultrasound so they had to sedate her.  The ultrasound showed that she had mild-moderate thickening in he GI tract (stomach, duodenum, jejunum, colon) and some mild enlargement of lymph nodes.  In addition, there was evidence of chronic/historic pancreatic disease.  The adrenal gland was normal.  There were no obvious masses.

Based on the ultrasound, the vet felt it could be a low-grade lymphoma where the abnormal cells fill in the normal cells and cause the thickening or it could be pancreatitis or perhaps both things.  Blood was drawn for a GI panel that would measure TLI, PLI, folate and cobalamin (B12) levels.  The blood work would take about a week so Nestle was sent home with Metronidazole which is an antibiotic, antiprotozoal to treat possible imflamation, B12, Proviable which a probiotic digestive supplement, and Cerenia for nausea/motion sickness.

The Results Of Nestle’s Blood Work

Nestle’s blood work came back with normal folate and low but normal cobalamin (B12).  Both her TLI (Trypsin-Like Immunreactivity), and PLI (Pancreatic Lipase Immunreactivity) were elevated which is consistent with pancreatitis.  Pancreatitis is fairly rare in cats and there is not a specific therapy to treat it so for the time being we are going to continue Nestle’s current medications and reevaluate in another week.  If she responds well, then we may continue the Proviable long term and perhaps change her diet.  In addition, we may add in prednisolone and Leukeran (which would treat IBD and/or low grade lymphoma).

How Is Nestle Doing?

Currently, Nestle seems to be doing a bit better.  She not eating as much of the dry food that I leave out for her all day long so she is not constantly in the litter box.  I also feed her soft food twice a day which she gobbles down so her appetite is still good.  I think she is digesting the nutrients in the food better.  She has put on a bit a weight which is a good sign.  She still needs to gain a lot more weight.  She weighed 4 pounds 12 ounces the last time she was weighed with he ideal weight being closer to 7 pounds.  Hopefully she will continue to gain weight.  I think her coat looks a bit improved as well.  It had seemed dull and dry, not the shiny pretty coat she had most of her life.  If you have dogs or cats, you know that the health of a coat can tell you a lot about the health of the animal.  Hopefully Nestle’s coat will continue to improve.

Nestle Had Fun At The Cabin

I had not been bringing her to our cabin for overnight stays because she was getting so sick in the car.  I used the Cerenia last weekend to bring her along and it worked like a charm.  No car sickness.  I think she really enjoyed being with us and we enjoyed having her.

I will update on Nestle if something changes with her.  Thanks to everyone who asked about how she was doing.  We really appreciate your concern and support.

13 thoughts on “An Update On Nestle The Cat

  1. Wow, only 4 lbs! That is tiny. Glad she is eating and putting on a bit of weight. Hope she continues to do well.

  2. When my Lucille was loosing weight I found Fromm dry food that worked well. It had small easy to chew pieces. Her favorite was Chicken a la Veg. (Tri-Natural Products.) I also gave her tablespoons of Gerber beef and veal when it was available. She really loved it and it’s meat with no additives. I warmed whatever was refrigerated just a few seconds and smoothed it or just added a little hot water and stirred to smooth. She also a change in her coat.

    1. Excellent tips. For the moment I can’t change food due to the pancreatitis, but I will ask the vet if I should be doing something different for food.

  3. I’m glad that Nestle is starting to gain a little weight! Cats can be so difficult to figure out–we’re getting ready to start Soth on a new prescription diet because his unsolvable bladder problems are back in full force now, too. I hope Nestle continues to improve–my fingers are crossed that this line of treatment is just what she needs!

  4. Go nestle keep gaining weight and gobbling down the can food. Glad the cerenia worked and no vomiting in the car that is good stuff.

  5. I hope that the food and the meds can help Nestle to gain some weight. Glad that the cerenia worked like a magic potion and Nestle was with you :o) Hugs and POTP to Nestle, we cross our paws for good news…

  6. We are so very sorry to hear Nestle has been unwell. It is horribly worrying when one of our furry kids isn’t well. We’re thrilled to hear she’s improving with her medications. We’ll be keeping you all in our prayers that this treatment continues to work.

  7. It’s hard to judge from photos sometimes, I didn’t realize what a tiny thing Nestle is! I thought Sam was small at 8-9 lbs. Nestle is probably about the same size as Sam’s late sister, Katie…though Katie was often on the heavy side.
    I’m so glad Nestle is showing some improvement with the new meds, and especially that she was able to go to camp with you!
    How do you get her to take all those meds? We struggled so much with Sam just taking one pill at one point!

    1. I tried putting them in her soft food, but she busted it after two days. Then I tried just giving them to her and she took them, but it was unpleasant. Then I discovered pill pockets and she loves them. Gobbles it right down. This from a cat who most of her life would only eat her food and no treats. I only have to do that with the antibiotic though. She loves the B12 on its own and the probiotic is a powder that I mix into her soft food once a day.

  8. Thanks for sharing this. We have had similar issues with Delilah that we are working on, and currently have her on some Chinese herbs. She did have an ultrasound which also showed some thickening in her intestines. Before her blood work the vet was insistent on Cushings, and has now changed that insistence to IBD. Since her levels were just below normal, we are approaching it differently.

    I hope the protocol you have Nestle on helps her feel better.

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