Hi all,
Thanks to everyone who responded last week. Your advice means a lot to me,
as do your kind words of support. Most of my friends here are not pet
owners, so hearing from folks who have been through the same thing makes me
feel way less alone. So again, thank you.

At our last vet appointment, Sylvia's hematocrit was up to 31 from 28,
which may be a good sign re: the anemia. I've switched the cats to EVO
Herring and Salmon because that's the smelliest and seems to be Sylvia's
favorite (she prefers it to A/D soft food). Her fever, unfortunately, has
not responded to antibiotics. She's had a shot of Convenia, and I'm giving
her antibiotics at home, too; we started with zeniquin, but it didn't seem
to help, so the vet switched us onto doxycycline. She's eating enough on
her own that the vet doesn't think we need to worry about assisted feeding
or tube feeding, but she does have me giving subcutaneous fluids at home
daily as long as Sylvia's fever is over 103 (she's been steady at 104 for
over a week). We do have some new symptoms, too: her nose is extremely
runny/stuffy, she's sneezing a lot and sniffling, and her eyes look very
watery. The discharge is clear. Because she's not responding to
antibiotics, the vet started her on steroids (prednisolone) today. She
suspects that Sylvia has either an immune-mediated anemia or potentially
FLV-related cancer, and thinks the steroids might help. I am under strict
instructions to continue giving subcutaenous fluids and antibiotics along
with the prednisolone.

Sylvia seems to be feeling better than she was when I originally posted.
She's not hiding under the bed, but has been sleeping out in the open on
the couch and occasionally getting up to watch birds out the window on the
armchair or hang out on the floor for a bit. She purred a little last night
and seems quite happy to get attention/cuddles. She's still interested in
treats, too. I'm trying to encourage her to eat as much as I can, and the
vet says the steroids should help with that.

Anything I need to look out for with the steroids? Have any of you had
treatment go this route? I'm not at all clear on what the prognosis is for
Sylvia right now, though I'd assume that if we're dealing with cancer that
the steroids aren't a permanent fix. Any information you have that can help
me figure out what to expect would be immensely helpful.
Many thanks, and lots of luck to all of you and yours.
Anna, Sylvia, and Beatrice

Anna E. Waltman
PhD student & Teaching Associate
Department of English and American Literature
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
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