October 15, 2012

Cat Scratch Fever...Yeah You Know the Song........

Well, again I have an "It Could Only Happen To Me" story.

After volunteering a few days at our local county animal shelter; two days with 78 homeless kitties (and after finding a RAT in the motor of my Mustang) Hubs and I thought it might be a good idea to adopt a couple kittens to see if Diesel, our German Shepherd/Son could get along with them. (He HATES any cat sound on TV).

We went back to the shelter on a Saturday & chose two kittens that looked very much alike although from two separate litters.  One was bob-tailed, the other had a long tail.  Both long haired, grey and beautiful.

After bringing them home and introducing them to Diesel through a crate, he seemed to accepted them. We still did not let him come in physical contact, and knew that would take weeks.  So, keeping them separate was a struggle.  We decided to take it day by day. 

We would let Diesel out to play with the other dogs and I would let the kittens loose in the house to have a free for all. Their names from the shelter were-Bob, the bobtail and Johnny, the long-tail.  Although we tried thinking of new names we continued to call them by those. Bob seemed really calm and sweet whereas Johnny was constantly climbing my pant-leg and everything else. 

I came home after three days to find Bob lying in the bottom of the cage.  He was dead. I knew it immediately. Of course I began to FREAK!  I removed Johnny from the cage and had to call our local Sheriffs Department to get in touch with the after hours Animal Control Officer to let him know what happened and find out what we should do.

We packed poor little Bob on ice and bleached everything in the house. From top to bottom.

The next day, we took Bob back to the shelter and turned him in, hoping they could figure out what had happened to him.  And, to insure them to see that Diesel didn't try to have a cat snack.

Johnny was terribly sad alone, so, we decided to bring another kitten home.  Only, they had just had a huge adoption the weekend before.  They only had adult cats.  We loved Bob's little short tail and his mom was still up for fostering.  My friend Teresa had taken me down to take Bob's body and to pick up another kitten.  We chose the Bob's mother and on the way home Momma kitty decided to poop in the crate (which was in my lap).  My friend and I rolled the windows down and I was spraying hairspray (the only thing I had in my purse) to try to keep the smell down.  We were both about to barf.

Finally we got her home. That five minutes seemed like hours.  I took her to put her in the cage with Johnny.  Only when I got her out, not only had she pooped, she was covered in it, and blood.  I jerked Johnny kitten up out of the cage and put her in alone.  It was discusting to say the least. 

I called the shelter and they said she probably got nervous on the ride home. Yeah, whatever....I've bred dogs for over 12 years and never seen anything like this.  I knew something was terribly wrong with her.  I called our vet who said to take her back immediately and to also worm her.  I wormed her twice and kept calling the shelter who was closed all weekend and on Monday.  After 3 days of keeping Johnny cat separate from Momma Kitty as well as Diesel and our other dogs, it was rough to say the least. 

On Friday before I was playing with Johnny and working from home on the computer.  He was in my lap and LAUNCHED himself towards my neck. Just as if he was hugging me.  He dug his claws into my throat.  I had to pull them backward to get them out of my skin.  I put alcohol on the scratches right after and though nothing of it.  A few days later I had a sore neck.  It kept getting worse and worse but, I thought I had pulled a muscle.  On Monday morning it was so sore I asked Hubby to look and see if my neck was swollen.  I had a strange rash and it was very swollen and red.  After a 3 hrs. at a doctors appointment that evening, they thought I had West Nile Virus, Meningitis, or Cat Scratch Disease (yep, disease.. not fever, you just get a high fever). 

Two days later my blood work came back...Cat Scratch Disease it was.  Even though the doc said my scratches looked healthy and healed.  I caught it really early which was good or it would have been much worse.  Symptoms last from 4-6 weeks and it stays in your body for YEARS.  So, now I can't be around kitty's at all.

Needless to say, hubby took both Momma Kitty and Johnny kitten back to the shelter.  He told them that Johnny had the Cat Scratch bacteria under his claws and that he should be treated before being adopted.  I hope no one else has to go through what I have the past month.  I'm still dealing with fever and fatigue. Who knew that this little guy could do so much damage.  And, funny thing, I miss him like crazy. : (

Kids are much more susceptible to the disease.  If you are considering adopting a kitten or cat please keep watch on where they come from or where.  Thirty percent of kittens carry this bacteria under their claws.  Three weeks later I am dealing with it more than ever. 

The bad news is that Johnny Kitten has been adopted by another family.  I wish I could tell them what the may have to deal with.  Prayers please for everyone involved. I don't want a child to be hospitalized because of their new pet.  And, I hope the Shelter folk lets the family know what they brought home with them.

Good new is...3-4 great reviews/giveaways as soon as I can get them posted.

Crumb Creek Mills
E.O. Products
Renew Skin Products
Glade Expressions

And many more.  I will post them ASAP!  Keep checking for the new product reviews/giveaways.  Sorry for the delay! I never would have guessed a little kitten would make me soooo sick. :(
 
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