Patient information: Name: JXN. Species: Feline. Sex: MN. Breed: DSH. Birthday: 7/26/2011. Age: 1 year old. Color: Grey. Weight: 10 lbs. 12 oz.
Presenting concerns: fever.
History: Still febrile, ate once after home yesterday-new today, small scab on neck.
Physical exam findings: Scab is over breathing hole, not yet erupted, of small cuterebra. Removal after anesthesia/capstar, removed 7 mm grub, flush out poorly defined multichambered pocket over trachea. Red swollen area of tissue approx. 2.5 cm wide, hole after removal small, approx. 6 mm.
Assessment: Grub is a normal rabbit parasite. Does not mature to fly in a cat. Makes cat very sick before the grub dies. He will be 100% better as toxins leave his body. Hole will close up without any more treatment.
This report from the Ann Arbor Animal Hospital tells a lot about a type of cat parasite that was new to me, even after sixty years of cat ownership. But there's more. So here's the backstory.