Last Friday I took Jack to the vet because I noticed he had a loose tooth. He was licking at his mouth like he had something stuck in his teeth, so that’s when I looked in his mouth and saw that one of his incisors was practically hanging out of his gums. Other than the licking, he hadn’t shown any signs of pain or difficulty eating or grooming.
The vet looked at his mouth and she said it looks like he has Feline Gingivitis Stomatitis. Basically, it’s a condition where the cat’s immune system “attacks” their teeth as if they’re foreign objects. Their gums get swollen and irritated, and their teeth will get a horrible buildup of plaque, and usually start falling out. Sometimes, this condition correlates with FIV, Feline Leukemia, or other underlying health issues. To be safe, the vet took a blood sample from him and had him tested for everything. He came up FIV and Feline Leukemia negative before I adopted him, but I definitely wanted to make sure he had a clean bill of health. The tests came back and the good news is that he’s healthy, other than the FGS.
He has an appointment on January 29th. They’re going to take x-rays of his teeth to see just how badly the FGS has affected his teeth. The problem teeth are going to be extracted, and the remaining teeth will be cleaned. The only issue with leaving some teeth intact is that the FGS will usually attack those teeth eventually, so they’d have to be extracted later on. From what the vet has said and what I’ve read about FGS, the most effective plan of action is to just remove all of the cat’s teeth so that there’s nothing for the FGS to attack. Cats do pretty well without teeth, and since Jack doesn’t chew his food anyway, he probably won’t even know the difference.
So, the vet bill is going to be pretty massive. The vet estimated $700 to $1,000. I’ve already spent $250 on his blood tests. I’m going to put any expenses on a credit card, but paying off that debt is going to be a little difficult. My family and friends suggested I start a fundraiser in case anyone wants to contribute. I did, and so far we’ve raised $70.00! It doesn’t sound like a lot, but it’s a lot to me.
I’m not worried about the surgery — I’m sure it will go well, and Jack will recover quickly. I’ll do anything to keep my little furry buddy around longer.