Cat with Chronic Ear Infection
by Alisa W.
My 1-year-old domestic short-hair cat has run a chronic infection in his right ear most of the time we have had him. He came to us from the SPCA with an ear infection.
He is a fully outdoor cat. He eats Tuscan Natural grain-free cat food. He lives with seven other cats and four goats, and seems happy. He is up to date on all shots, and otherwise in good health.
The ear infection would often improve with Tresaderm, but quickly return. Recently we have had him seen by a local veterinarian again. The ear was cultured and the infection found to be caused by two primary bacteria that were both susceptible to an indwelling topical antibiotic treatment and to Orbax (Sorry that I do not know what bacteria were isolated, or the name of the topical treatment) .
The first trip my cat was given just the topical treatment. He was found on re-check to be improved after a week. He was retreated topically and then given a two-week course of Orabax.
At the second visit, our veterinarian also recommended a trial of hypoallergenic food, and sent our cat home with a horrible looking Purina product whose first ingredient was “rice starch” (processed grain) and every third other ingredient was something unpronounceable. It seemed to be mostly grain. We refused to give this to our cat.
Also, I don’t see the purpose of a two-week trial on a hypoallergenic diet done at the same time as antibiotic treatment – how would you know what works? So we did not do the diet, but religiously gave the medicine.
After two weeks he was subjectively better. His ear no longer smelled bad, and last week he caught a mouse, so his hearing has improved. At recheck today, two weeks later, however, the vet reported the ear was (if anything) a little worse objectively on exam. The doctor reports she can now visualize the TM and it appears to be bulging a bit and/or anatomically situated more distally than the other TM. There was a bit of blood at the inferior margin. She recommends a referral to a surgeon.
We wonder what you might recommend. And if a food trial would be useful, what product would you recommend?
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