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Very, very sick cat. Please help!

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hi! I really need some advice. I have an extremely sick cat and three vets don't know why. I got him from the humane society about a week and a half ago. He's a beautiful solid white turkish angora cat, three years old, with blue eyes. He's also deaf in both ears.

He was fine the first few days we had him. About a week ago he became extremely lethargic, stopped eating and drinking water. He also started to drool excessively ( a teaspoon at a time) every time we picked him up. He would also run away when he was picked up, which was strange for a cat that was so cuddly and affectionate at first.

Furthermore, he started to sneeze excessively, and then shake his mucus all over. Eventually, he was sleeping in one spot for 15 hours at a time, so we took him to the vet. They weren't sure what was wrong, but rehydrated him intravenously, gave us an antibiotic that we needed to administer orally, and advised us to buy a cat water fountain to encourage him to drink.

Two days later his condition was no better. He was drooling more than ever before, becoming increasingly lethargic and dehydrated. We took him to the vet again, and she did another thorough inspection. They did his bloodwork, and everything came back normal. They tested him for feline leukemia and hiv, all negative. She inspected his mouth for any sores that may be preventing him from eating and drinking, and there was nothing. She tested his eyes to make sure it wasn't neurological, and it wasn't.

She did discover that he had a very high fever. The vet was able to get him to eat a pea sized amount of food off of her fingertip, so we know he is able to swallow. Now, we go to the best and by far most expensive vet in the city, so it was discouraging to hear her say "I have no idea what's wrong with him. If he had a cold, he'd still be drinking and eating a bit. I've examined all the reasons for a cat drooling, and none are present." This was Friday. So we had him hospitalized over night, where he was fed and hydrated intravenously, and given medicine to bring down his fever (we were completely unsuccessful at giving him an antibiotic orally.)

We went Saturday (yesterday) to pick him up at three, since the clinic was closed until Monday. A second vet inspected him, and inserted a tube through his nose down his esophagus so we could feed him and give him more medicine to bring down his fever. This other vet suspects he may have a bad, undetected viral infection that he's fighting though. We've fed him twice using liquid food and water down his tube. After feeding he tends to gag for a few minutes. Also, he gags and or chokes whenever he's picked up. Today his energy level seems slightly increased.

Has anyone ever experienced something similar to this? Was anyone's vet successful in diagnosing what it was? We've only had him a week and a half and we've spent $1000 on vet bills. I'm becoming increasingly concerned that he's in a lot of pain and discomfort, and that I'm keeping him alive for selfish reasons.

Anyone have any advice or any idea what might be wrong?!
post #2 of 12
I haven't had any experience with it but I wanted to wish you the best of luck with your little guy. Sending all the good healthy feel better vibes I can.
post #3 of 12
Is it possible he got into something he shouldn't have? Do you have any plants? Are there people treating their lawns in your area? I don't know if a poisonous substance would show up in his blood work.
These are probably things you have thought of already.
I hope your boy starts getting better soon.

post #4 of 12
And also, have you contacted the humane society where you got him from to let them know? They should have some sort of health guarantee for a start and I would hope they'd reimburse some costs.

As well as that, it could be something going through the shelter, and it's important they know about it!

I have absolutely no idea about what could be ailing him but wish you all the very best - good on you for doing so much for him!
post #5 of 12
I'm so sorry that you're going through this. It is very frustrating when you get him medical help, but you don't find the answers.

Have they done an x-ray to rule out any blockages? Does he use the litterbox at all?

This sounds very serious and the best you can do is to take him to a feline only vet. If you don't have one in your area, or they are not giving you any answers I would ask the vet to fax over all his records to the closest veterinary college for a second opinion. I only know of the one in Guelph. Here's the link:

Good luck. I hope you find some answers soon.
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your advice. He hasn't been outdoors, but we do have a solarium with plenty of plants. I think I'll be throwing them all out tonight. As for the humane society, I called and told them what was going on and they were very apathetic. They just offered to return the $45 adoption fee, and didn't seem concerned that it could have affected the other animals.

I'm not sure if there are feline vets in Ottawa, but I will look into it. I'll also ask my vet to fax some information to the college in Guelph, to see if they have any answers. Thanks again for all your help, and I hope to post a happy conclusion here soon!
post #7 of 12
I'd take a look at the plants and see if any of them show signs of chewing. Did the vet look for toxins?

Hope everything starts looking up for you really soon. Sending all the feel better vibes I can your way.
post #8 of 12
We went through kind of the same thing with Skittles (our 5 year old cat) it all started last September, he jumped down from his chair and was very weak, too him to the vet, his calcium levels were really high, severly dehydrated, they kept him overnight to rehydrate tested for him for numerous things and nothing, he wasnt eating either. We too him to a second and third opinion and $800 later no one knew what it was, one vet told us he would probably live another month or two at the most. Our vet who gave him a ultrasound and saw nothing did give us a vitamin paste and a rx for predisone to get his appetite back and that worked. Since September we started to give him predisone (daily), vet said that would help with his allergies/asthma and with what was ever going on.

As a side note he weighed 19lbs in Jan and when we took him to the vet in June he was 17, when he got sick he was down to 13 and then 12 this past May 2007. He also had a bad heart murmur a rating of 7 from a scale of 1-10.

He then got dehydrated again in Nov and we took him back and he had to get rehydrated and she even showed us how to administer the iv at home. Which we did when needed, she told us what to look out for when to see he was dehydrated.

Skittles remained stabilized for the most part, having to rehydrate him every now and then, maybe three times from Dec to Aug. When we took him for his yearly shots to a new vet (we moved) I explained all that happened with Skittles and he said the only thing it has to be is intestinal/gastrointestinal cancer. He said if it is that, he will go superfast.

He did in fact Aug 24, he was very sick, throwing up and very lethargic. He ended up passing away Aug 27, 2007 at 5.5 years old.

We never gave up through predisone, IV and the numerous things we did to make him eat and make him comfortable, not once did he appear unhappy.

I hope this story helps, we never wanted to do a biopsy to know for sure, because we heard it was very painful for a cat and if they did find it was cancer we didnt want to do chemo.

Take care and good luck with you cat...
post #9 of 12
Bytown Cat Hospital Dr. Susan Little DVM 422 MacArthur Blvd Ottawa. Have met this wonderful lady in real life, she is ALL about the cats! Please go and see her- and best of luck.
post #10 of 12
I'm sorry such a serious story has brought you to us Sounds like our members have sent some very good connections your way. Sending mega vibes your way in hopes that you are able to find out what's wrong and that someday you will be reporting on your cat's success in overcoming this.
post #11 of 12
I am just reading this now. This is interesting to me because my Oswald had similar issues last weekend. He came in hiccuping and gagging, and vomiting up foam. He ate a little and then gagged it right back up. He could not drink water without vomiting. I thought it was possible that he had an obstruction, so I took him to my vet on an emergency basis. He rehydrated him and gave him some barium. His temperature was normal. The next day I took him back. He was still very depressed and not eating or drinking. The xray my vet took the next day did not indicate there was any blockage. He did, however, have a high fever. We thought he may have an elevated WBC or pancreatic values, so he had a CBC and differential and all was normal except for a low PCV/RBC. He was slightly anemic, so we did a FeLeuk and FIV test. Both, thank God, were negative. I took him home with some Baytril and sub-Q fluids that I gave him twice a day to keep him hydrated. He's much better. He was able to eat the next day and drank enough to keep him hydrated. He still horks and gags a couple of times a day, but no vomiting. He's no longer depressed nor does he have a fever. But the fact remains, Oswald went undiagnosed. We didn't know what it is, and still don't.

I'd love to know, Mr Zebra, if you are still around, how things worked out for your cat. Is he vaccinated?
post #12 of 12
Drooling ... a cracked tooth? Acute nausea from IBD or Pancreatitis?

Foreign body up the nose (from the snot production -- but that may be a separate problem) -- or Herpes virus in the snoot ...

Whatever it is good luck. Hydration with sub-Q and a lot of rest and support should help.

He sounds like my Ulysses -- also rescue, silky white, but SHORT coat!

I had one go through the drooling and foaming and nausea at 11. He lasted TWO more YEARS ,with loads of loving support (but not all that much in medical intervention) ... so, keep hope up!
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