Lil BUB is a one-of-a-kind cat. I rescued her as an 8-week-old feral kitten when no one else wanted to take her in. She was exceptionally small; her teeth didn’t grow in, she had an underdeveloped lower jaw, extra toes on all her paws, and bulging eyeballs. To me, she was perfect.
BUB was so unique that within a year of being alive, she became one of the most famous cats on the planet. But this story isn’t about BUB’s miraculous rise to fame; it’s about her miraculous recovery and perseverance in dealing with an exceptionally rare bone condition called osteopetrosis.
A condition so rare that Word’s spellcheck tries changing it to “osteoporosis.” BUB is literally the only cat diagnosed as a kitten, with this disease. Osteopetrosis, also known as “stone bone” disease is a condition where the bones become dense, hard, and twisted, often leaving little or no marrow cavity. The disease stunts growth (which is why she is only four pounds), causes deformity of the limbs, impacts BUB’s mobility, and will likely lead to osteoarthritis and increased pain and discomfort.
She was diagnosed with osteopetrosis shortly after her first birthday. I had been noticing that her mobility was quickly becoming severely impacted to the point where she was having to army crawl just to get around. One day, I came home to find her completely immobile, so I took her to my vet who ordered x-rays and discovered that her bones looked like nothing he had seen before. We then went to a specialist who officially diagnosed her with osteopetrosis and believed she might only have a few months of life left before she wouldn’t even be able to move her jaw to eat.
This was an incredibly difficult time for me and BUB, but I didn’t want to give up. She was given painkillers and steroids, but I didn’t like the way she was responding to them, and I knew they weren’t good for her. I tried alternative treatments including Reiki (even though I was a skeptic), and I was surprised to see how much she enjoyed the treatment. After a couple of weeks of daily sessions, she was moving again, although still with difficulty. More importantly, I saw that the light had come back into her eyes.
Right around that same time, I received an email from a BUB fan that recommended a device called the Assisi Loop®. I was ready to try anything, so I had my vet look into it and he prescribed it for BUB. The results were absolutely astounding. The first time we used it I panicked because her back legs started twitching and kicking aggressively, enough to push her around the room! My vet said it was a promising sign, and meant that blood flow was increasing in her muscle tissue. I continued to give BUB two treatments a day, and within a couple of weeks she started standing upright for the first time in months; and within months, she was climbing stairs and eventually even jumping and running.
I have continued to give BUB two treatments a day for the past five years to help her with inflammation, pain management, and to maintain a healthy blood flow. I always have at least two Loops at home to ensure that she never misses a treatment when one runs out of battery (usually after no less than 150 treatments), and always order another when one expires.
I completely attribute BUB’s longevity, happiness, and wellbeing to the effectiveness of the Assisi Loop. The treatment is non-invasive, has no ill side effects, and helps manage her pain better than any oral medication we’ve used.
It’s important to be able to recognize pain or discomfort in your cat, especially since felines are so good at hiding it from us. Most cat owners are very in-tune with their pets’ behaviors, so it’s important to take note when something changes, such as a change in dietary habits, a change in sleeping habits, over-grooming, hiding, irritability, limping, or any other behavioral changes. If you notice anything out of the ordinary, please consult your vet to ensure that your pet is not experiencing any pain or health issues
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