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Stressed? Depressed? Something Else?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I've recently moved from CT to TX by car with my cat. He wasn't much too happy about it but seemed to settle in nicely when we arrived to our new location. We've been here over a week now. I came home from work last night to find him curled up under the desk and not willing to move. I teased him with treats and toys and other means of playing and he just looked at me as though I was crazy. I tried to pick him up and cuddle him and he would only stay in my arms for about 30 seconds before jumping out and slinking off to a new location to rest.

His resting spots for the past 12 hours have been under furniture (desk, table, chairs, etc). He won't lay on the couch or bed, his usual resting spots. He's not used the littler box (or gone elsewhere) in the past 12 hours either. He also won't eat and barely drinks (only if I splash a bit on his nose first). Generally he's very lethargic.

I can't even get him to meow or play in any manner. He's generally unresponsive to my voice. He might look at me if I call his name but then looks away again.

I noticed this morning he's drooling, and am not sure if this has been constant or not.

I'm taking him to the vet in an hour when they open but was wondering if anyone had any thoughts in the meantime.

Also, he's an indoor only cat. And as far as I can tell he hasn't gotten into anything he shouldn't have (poisoning).

post #2 of 13
Do you have a thermometer? Can you try taking his temperature? Also, is there a possibility he could have gotten into something like a new plant or cleaning chemical? Has he been exposed to other cats recently?
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
I don't have any plants - so that it's ruled out. I have the cleaning supplies in a cabinet that he can't get into. But what I have wondered is if there is maybe something in the carpet (I'm in an apartment) that he might have licked up when either cleaning himself or eating a treat.

He hasn't been exposed to other cats, but I did have to spend two nights in a hotel with him where other animals might have been previously. This was over a week ago though. I would have thought if he picked up something in the hotels his reaction would have been more immediate, but I certainly could be wrong.

The other thing I didn't mention. He has been diagnosed with a heart murmur. He isn't on any medication for it, as the medication wouldn't necessarily help him. And since at that time (2 years ago) he wasn't showing any signs of being "ill" I opted against medication.

Also, he's about 4 years old - so relatively young.
post #4 of 13
I don't think there is anything you can do but get him to the vet ASAP. If they don't open soon, I would call around and see if there are any ER vets nearby. Until then, just try to keep calm to avoid stressing him because of his murmur.
post #5 of 13
I would get him IN to be seen, ASAP.

Drooling ... I was thinking about another thread -- drooling can indicate acute nausea. Stress could've precipitated a severe GI reaction and your kitty will need IV support and a resting gut, to get past it.

Please let us know how he IS!
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
He's now at the vet. Even with whatever is ailing him he found his hatred for the vet and threw a fit when they tried to handle him. He also managed to urinate in his carrier while in the car and leave a nice dropping on the counter when they went to take his temperature.

His temperature is low and he has lost some weight. It's not clear if the weight loss is recent or not, his last vet visit was about 18 months ago.

They are going to gas him today to do some bloodwork and observe him for the rest of the day. They will also poke and prod him as much as they can while he's anesthesized to see if they can come up with anything.

The vet said the good news is that he did urinate so he doesn't seem to have a blockage. I'm hoping I don't have a non-litterbox user on my hands now. This is the first time he's ever gone somewhere other than his box.

I will know more this evening and will post again then.

post #7 of 13
Where in Texas are you? I just recently moved to Houston, if you need some vet advice. I hope that he gets better soon and that you get a diagnosis.
post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
Sassy's Mom - I'm in the Dallas area - but thanks!
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
I picked the little furball up from the vet tonight. His bloodwork was mostly normal - a few oddities, but nothing the vet is concerned about at this point. He received a fluid injection to try to re-hydrate him. He also received a penicillin and steroid injection for good measure.

The vet suggested I isolate him to a single room to be able to closely watch his litterbox and for any vomitting. He's in the bathroom for the night with his box, fresh water, and some food the vet said he'd sprint for (he didn't ) and a blanket. I've been checking on him periodically and as far as I can tell there's no real change from 24 hours ago.

The also said I should make him boiled chicken and rice after he eats up this can of food (which he's not touching) and check back in with him tomorrow and Friday morning for progress updates.

The vet also did a lukemia and FIV test and both were negative.

The only other comment from the vet was the heart murmur didn't appear strong at all today which means either he's getting better... or the different doctors rate it differently.
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Here I am in the early morning again. I got up this morning and went to check on my cat right away. He was isolated to a relatively large bathroom since he got home last evening. He was sitting upright at the door when I opened it, but he didn't move from there. He still has not had any food or water, though they are both available to him. He's also not used the litterbox (or anywhere else). He seems to be slightly more alert this morning, only slightly. I'm still worried.

I'll be reporting into the vet this morning when they open. Unfortunately I have a long day and won't be home for 12-14 hours after I leave.

Any thoughts on how I can get him to eat? I've tried forcing his mouth open but he just tosses his head about when I do that. I've also tried different foods - his usual dry, canned tuna, and a royal canin wet food from the vet. I've also tried his treats (greenies) and all get the same response. A few sniffs and then a turned head.

I've also tried splashing his water to get him to drink it and that worked so-so on Tuesday but now he just ignores it.

I know if he'd eat and drink he'd be doing a lot better, I just don't know how to force it on him.
post #11 of 13
A couple of tricks I've used with Willow when she refuses to eat are feeding her off a spoon and touching the bit of wet food to her nose--she instictively licks it off. Sometimes that is enough to get her started eating again. When it's not, I resort to appetite stimulants, like cyproheptadine. It is an anti-histamine that has appetite enhancing properties--most cats will eat within a half hour of taking it. Different doses work for different cats--most due well with between 1/8 and 1/2 of of a pill. I usually start with 1/4 of a pill. In the US, they are a prescription item, and I get them from the vet.

Also, there is a possibility that your kitty is nauseaous. Going to the food dish, sniffing it, and the backing away is one sign of nausea. Sometimes medications like Pepcid AC (not Complete) can help. I'd check with your vet about the doseage.

Since you recently moved, it's possible that the water tastes funny to your kitty. You might try getting some bottled water to see if that tastes better. If he likes milk or tuna, you can give him some lactose-free milk (or regular if you know he can hold it down) or drain some liquid from a can of tuna packed in water to give to him. Sometimes chicken broth can be offered, but you may need to make your own unless you can find one that doesn't have onions or garlic in it (most have onion or onion powder which can be toxic). I've made chicken broth by boiling some chicken--the chicken can also be offered to see if he'll eat that. Spot also liked scrambled eggs, so I'd give him some of those to entice him to eat.
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
cloud_shade, thanks so much for the suggestions.

I came home tonight (late) and he still had not ate or drank or used the box.

I promptly went back out and bought some chicken baby food (a vet suggestion). I came back home and gave it a try. He again sniffed and backed away. I then tried my finger to get just a touch on his nose, much like cloud_shade suggested. That got him started. He ate about two teaspoons worth but only off my finger. He then got up and walked over to the box and urinated. I couldn't have been more excited... some eating... and using the box!

After the box I let him rest a bit and then came back to try a few more things. I took and dumped the water bowl (it was bottled water) and tried a whole different bowl with some fresh bottled water. I had to pour it really slow to entice him with the fountain like action. He drank a tiny bit, but it was a start. I also got him to eat about another 1/2 teaspoon of the baby food.

He seems to be struggling with bowls of food because he wants to lay down only. So I put about two teaspoons of the babyfood on a plate and left it for him. I also left him with some fresh bottled water in a small bowl.

I'm hoping when I wake up in the morning both are gone. I can hope for the best, right?

He also seemed to be purring a small bit when I rubbed under his chin tonight, I'll take that as a small sign toward getting better.
post #13 of 13
It sounds like he's making progress. My Willow isn't eating--she has had similar "incidents" of this in the past where she isn't feeling well and doesn't eat. After Spot had bouts of inappetance, my vet let me keep some cyproheptadine on hand which I may be giving to Willow soon if she continues to not eat very much. I also noticed her licking her lips a lot so I gave her a little bit of Pepcid AC (I've checked with my vet in the past about the dosage) in case she's nauseous. I just put her next to the food bowl and got her to eat. She's definitely not feeling well but getting her to eat something is always a good start.

I hope your baby feels better soon. It's so stressful when they're unwell.

Edit: As soon as I posted this, Willow came into the room again and promptly peed next to the litterbox again. I had just taken her in to the vet because of that a few days ago. The vet thinks it's stress related--whatever it is, it's really bothering her. I hate seeing my kitties sick.
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