TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Health › Dying or Something Else?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Dying or Something Else?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I have a 19 year old cat, named Kira. She's very thin, probably only about 5 or 6 pounds, if even. We have her on anti-biotics to help her gain weight, which really haven't been working. She can't really eat hard food much anymore, so we give her moist whenever she cries for it. She constantly has watery, really nasty eye boogers, and she has bad dandruff. She doesn't clean herself up much anymore, and her fur is all matted, even after brushing her out. You can feel her spine, and all her bones. She throws up alot, but otherwise seems to be content.

A few years back, she always used to hide under the bed; she was a real life scardy cat, but now she's always on the couch around us, but not really acknowleding us at all.I'm worried that she's dying or something. She is 19, after all, and I practically grew up with her. My parent's had her before I was born, and she was my little companion before she got all freaked-out scardy cat on me.

Does anyone know what's wrong with her? Is she in pain, or am I just misreading her body language? Should I put her down if she is in pain?

--Worried Owner #124889761
AKA acavoo
post #2 of 14
First of all, congratulations on having a 19 year old cat. That shows you take very good care of her. You do sound pretty worried... I know, easier said than done, but try to be a little more relaxed. Kitty can see your body language; and if you're worried, she'll catch the vibes and be worried herself. So drink some hot tea, watch a sunset, and take life as it comes--you and your cat both deserve it.

My hunch? Yes, she's getting old; but she needs a vet check to make sure there's nothing additional going on.

She's still eating and jumping onto the couch, presumably; so those are good signs. It means she still has some appetite, as well as enough energy and power in her muscles to jump up.

But her fur being matted isn't a good sign; she probably doesn't have the energy (or maybe the flexibility) to clean herself properly. Also, the weight loss is troubling; it means less stored energy in case she has an illness.

Many cats hide when in pain; yours is seeking out your company (yes, she is--even if she isn't acknowledging you; being around you is quite a social gesture). But behavior changes in general can be a sign of illness, but I'd be way more worried if a normally gregarious cat were hiding. It could be that she has begun to enjoy comfort more, and wants to lie someplace soft. If she has grown thin, it is probably not very comfortable to lie on the floor anymore (ask any very thin person--they will tell you their butts hurt if they sit on a hard surface!). See if she'd like a soft pillow on the floor for her; then you'll know if that's what she's after.

I think she probably needs a "senior citizen" checkup from your vet. He can check to see if anything's wrong, or if it is just that she's getting older and slowing down. In either case, he can tell you whether she's in pain, give you tips on how to get her to eat a little more, and generally tell you how to make her life easier.

If she's in severe pain, yes--euthanasia is a good choice. But mild to moderate pain can be managed--for example, if she has arthritis, and is stiff, there are medications that can help her.

Vet visit is highly recommended.
post #3 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by acavoo View Post
I have a 19 year old cat, named Kira. She's very thin, probably only about 5 or 6 pounds, if even. We have her on anti-biotics to help her gain weight, which really haven't been working. She can't really eat hard food much anymore, so we give her moist whenever she cries for it. She constantly has watery, really nasty eye boogers, and she has bad dandruff. She doesn't clean herself up much anymore, and her fur is all matted, even after brushing her out. You can feel her spine, and all her bones. She throws up alot, but otherwise seems to be content.

A few years back, she always used to hide under the bed; she was a real life scardy cat, but now she's always on the couch around us, but not really acknowleding us at all.I'm worried that she's dying or something. She is 19, after all, and I practically grew up with her. My parent's had her before I was born, and she was my little companion before she got all freaked-out scardy cat on me.

Does anyone know what's wrong with her? Is she in pain, or am I just misreading her body language? Should I put her down if she is in pain?

--Worried Owner #124889761
AKA acavoo

That is awesome you have such an old kitty. Shows you are an excellent cat owner and she is lucky to have you. She knows she doesn't have too long left, it is nuice that she came around and is being so friendly and social. Just keep her comfy, and everything. I wouldn't do much as far as taking her to the vet goes unless she seems to be in pain or else as soon as she stops eating or drinking. I think it would stress her out too much. On a side note, antibiotics don't have anything to do with weight gain or loss...
post #4 of 14
I don't really have an answer for you, I wish I did. I'm pretty much a new cat owner... I know that 19 is very old in kitty years. You and your family must have taken very good care of her.

I'm sure there is someone else here, though, that could have more of an answer for you.

God Bless her though... Gosh... 19 years is like 92 people years.

I did a quick search on google and found the calculation.

The first year is counted as 15 years, the second is counted as 9 equaling 24, and every year thereafter counts as 4 years.

It also said the oldest recorded age of a cat is 34 years.

A trip to the vet at her age is highly recommended, though...in case she hasn't already been.
post #5 of 14
You could maybe get the vet to come around to your house? A vet trip is stressful, after all... Some vets do home visits, and with such an old cat, it could be worthwhile to pay a little extra.

At least call your vet & ask... These symptoms all seem to be part of the normal aging process during the last years, but I'm not a vet, so...
post #6 of 14
Doesn't sound like she will be here much longer. It could be many thing - cancer comes to mind with the weight loss. Could be kidney failure too.

Its up to you if you feel she is suffering to make that decision. If she's not showing signs of improvment then its probably best to end any suffering. Mitten was 13 yrs old when I had to put him down due to cancer - he was 14 lbs and when I took him in he was 6-7 lbs - a walking skeleton. I didn't want him to suffer any more.
post #7 of 14
Please tell your parents to get her to a vet pretty quickly. He will be able to advise the best course of action for her.
post #8 of 14
Vet visits are so stressful for kitties, if you can get one to come to your house that would be best.
I would also buy her the yummiest and her favoriest wet foods to encourage her to eat more, maybe she will gain some weight.

I wouldn't give up on her yet.
post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
Danke for all your advice, its really helped.

*sigh*

I just wish there were a way for us just to read a cat's mind, you know?

Anyway, I'll make sure she gets that senior citizen check up soon, and maybe he'll also tell me that its not too much of a big deal.

Thanks again!
post #10 of 14
My 18 year old cat freda had the same problem back in january. She was extremly thin,didnt eat much and her fur was very matted and dirty. The vet said she had a lump in her stomach which was most likely cancer,we had her on antibiotics for 2 weeks but they didnt work, i didnt want her to suffer so we made the decision to get her put to sleep. It was difficult but in my opinion its for the best,theres no point in dragging it on and on. Get your kitty to the vet and see what happens. Goodluck
post #11 of 14
Congratulations on having a 19 year old cat, I have a 16 year old cat myself, so I understand your concerns. When a cat reaches a very old age, one thing to be concerned about is quality of life, but this is something you should discuss with your vet. And I agree, please take your kitty to the vet for a through senior exam.
post #12 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by janine&lily View Post
My 18 year old cat freda had the same problem back in january. She was extremly thin,didnt eat much and her fur was very matted and dirty. The vet said she had a lump in her stomach which was most likely cancer,we had her on antibiotics for 2 weeks but they didnt work, i didnt want her to suffer so we made the decision to get her put to sleep. It was difficult but in my opinion its for the best,theres no point in dragging it on and on. Get your kitty to the vet and see what happens. Goodluck
My cat has the same thing it seems, only he's only 4 years old.. over the past 4-6 weeks he's gone down from 15lbs to 7lbs, and his fur was also knotted a lot.. I took him to the vet this morning, and she says he's dehydrated, jaundiced, and has a fever.. and they found a lump in his abdomen. Tests for FLV came back negative, but she says it could still be cancerous, and they wont know without operating to remove & test it.. its expensive, but I don't see any other choice.. I can't put down my cat without even knowing what's wrong with him or if he has a chance..
post #13 of 14
Have you had her tested for hyperthyroid or diabetes? If the weight loss was sudden, hyperthyroid could be the culprit, along with what everyone else has mentioned.

I would definitely get her checked out though. Her crawling underneath stuff can be a sign of passing on. Some cats will try and hide to die peacefully. I think its one last way of trying to remain dominate.
post #14 of 14
Hi, I grew up with a siamese that lived to be 22 years old.

During the last years of her life, she didn't eat much. Assuming she checks out a-ok at the vet, they sell a gooey vitamin supplement that you could try. I remember my dad using about half a fingertip worth and rubbing it on the top of her paw, so she was forced to lick it off. This is ALOT easier than trying to administer a pill... What kind of food is she eating? Wet food will probably be easier for her to eat.

Anyway, I agree with other's suggestions on trying to get a vet to do a home check-up. There's no reason to stress her out significantly if it can be avoided.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cat Health
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Health › Dying or Something Else?