Are we imagining it or has Smokey turned yellow?

Smokey is a one year old male cat who was brought to us when his owner noticed he looked yellow! Smokey’s skin and the whites of his eyes had become yellow in colour and they had noticed He was also a bit quieter than usual.
Dr Raj Wicks examined Smokey upon arrival at the clinic. In addition to his new colouring, Smokey was very lethargic. Dr Raj advised Smokey’s owners that Smokey would need to stay in hospital and have some blood tests to determine the cause of the illness.

Smokey’s blood tests revealed his liver enzymes were elevated and he was severely anaemic with a packed cell volume of only 12% (normal range 24%-45%). Examination of a blood smear by the pathologist showed that Smokey had a blood parasite, Mycoplasma haemofelis (H.felis). H. felis is an organism that results in early destruction of red blood cells.

Smokey was placed on intravenous fluids and closely monitored in hospital. To treat the Mycoplasma haemofelis Smokey was medicated with a double dose of antibiotics.

By Smokey’s second day in hospital he was already feeling a lot better and started eating again. On Smokey’s third day in hospital Dr Raj re-tested Smokey’s packed cell volume and found it was 20%. This meant the antibiotics were treating the infection and Smokey was producing new healthy red blood cells.

A very happy Smokey was able to go home after 4 days in hospital. His delighted owners were advised he would need medication for the next three weeks to insure the infection was totally cleared up. Smokey will also need to revisit the clinic weekly for examinations and blood tests.