June 7, 2010

For lack of

creativity, I shall call him Boy. The aunty caregiver refers him as the "fierce cat from the school". But, he's not fierce, just a dominant male in the colony of community cats. Volunteers have weaved in and out to help the few elderly caregivers -- one in her 60s and another in her 80s, caring for separate areas -- but few actually stay long enough to help.

Boy was found more than a week ago with a patch on his back and a few days later, another bald patch appeared, as if hair was completely sucked out of the spot. The two patches hang on his back symmetrically. Boy was dull for a few days and resumed eating for two days before the caregiver rang me and asked me for help. I had a bottle of Negasunt (used to treat against maggot wounds) with me, but because the patches look very unusual and we wanted to play safe, we brought him the vet. At the time of this writing , we await for results from the vet after she's done with the culture test. If I interpret this correctly, culture test entails scraping some hairs and putting them into a culture of solution. It takes about 3~4 days for results to be out.

I brought up the issue of ringworm to the vet, but yielded no response. Boy's patches look like a fungal infection, but the vet is not ruling out something internal. He eats well, rests well and moves around just fine at the moment. Together, we have set a quarantine place within the caregiver's house to confine the spread of infection to other cats as much as possible. I was told this could spread to humans too, and washing of hands after handling Boy is absolutely necessary.

Bringing Boy to medical attention is part of our ongoing effort to manage community cats, even though the stray cat rehabilitation scheme that worked very well years ago had been scrapped. Boy is sterilised, ear-tipped and vaccinated, but like a typical alpha male, he roams around and makes the effort as the leader to chase intruding cats into territories far from home turf. Among most, he's the most people-social one and would saunter confidently to anyone who approaches the caregiver's house while he guards it fervently. We have made a payment of over $50 to the vet for the treatment this time (Boy's on oral medication), and if you believe in the community cats rescye cause and would like to help us defray Boy's medical cost, please write to projectjkteam [at] yahoo [.] com [.] sg. At this juncture, we sincerely appreciate all advice on Boy's condition. If you're a cat owner and caregiver, and have come across similar encounters such as Boy's, kindly write to us too.

What are also the preventive measures we can do to restrict the spread of infection to other cats?

Thank you.

Boy, resting on a chair indoors. The perfect opportunity for us to "scoop" him into the carrier and bring him to the vet's, knowing he is one to struggle.

Aerial view: two circular bald patches on the shoulder blades

Hair's totally gone as if completely uprooted


Anonymous said...

were you able to diagnose what this was?

Anonymous said...

is your Shin (Siberian Husky) still available now ?

Grace said...

Oh! My cat used to have a similar patch right smack in the middle of her head. It didn't seem to itch or cause her any discomfort. The fur grew back after a while though...took more than a month, if I remember correctly.

JK said...

[Delayed reply]: probably fungal, and yes Shin is still available.