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how much fluid is enough?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hi all,

I recently took in a senior foster cat (Waggles) and he has come down with a serious URI. I took him to the vet today and he gave him 2 shots and some take-home antibiotics. I have managed to get Waggles to eat some canned food but he hasn't been drinking at all, he just stays curled up in his bed all day. I'm afraid of him getting dehydrated and would really like to avoid the sub-q route. Is there enough water in the canned food to get him over the hump of this? He ate close to a whole can (6 oz) today and yes I forgot to mention the dehydration to the vet but I did tell him Waggles had eaten. Is tuna juice ok for dehydration--it has a lot of salt. Thanks for any input!
post #2 of 10
I'm certainly no expert, but I was always under the impression that yes, the moisture content of canned food, if eaten in sufficient quantity, is an adequate provider of water. You didn't mention how much Waggles weighs, but on the surface 6 ounces of canned food per day sounds like a decent amount.

Of course, the more fluids that you can get into Waggles, the better. If you think that he will be more accepting of tuna juice than water, then I would think that the tuna juice would be beneficial, despite the salt content. Whatever it takes to help get him through this nasty URI so he can go back to eating and drinking normally.

And good for you for taking in this cat!
post #3 of 10
you could always add additional water to the wet food - make it more soupy.
post #4 of 10
I would add water to the canned food, to make it more soupy, and easier for him to lap it up. Heating the food just a tiny bit in the microwave will make it smell stronger, and more appetizing for him, too....especially if his sense of smell is compromised by the URI. I'd probably try to avoid syringing water into his mouth, as it would be possible for him to aspirate it into his lungs, and then you'd have a big problem on your hands. Have you tried checking his hydration levels, by checking the skin elasticity of his neck? If you pull up on the ruff, and it snaps back quickly, he probably isn't too dehydrated...also, if his gums feel slick and not sticky or tacky, it is a good indication that he's adequately hydrated. Check at the grocery store for low sodium tuna in water. I detest tuna, so I honestly can't tell you that it exists for sure, but I imagine that it probably does! Another food you can give him is babyfood meats without onion. Add a little water to that, and most cats can't resist it! Good luck!
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the input, I'll try diluting his food a bit. I was just so happy that he was eating that I didn't want to make it any less appealing, but I can always give him more without the extra water if he doesn't like it. I picked up some baby food yesterday as an emergency measure. I *really* want to avoid forcing him to eat or drink as his mouth is really bothering him (he also has bad teeth which were going to be fixed this week before he got sick). I haven't checked his skin, he's just so lethargic I'm reluctant to do much to him. Maybe I'll try that when I get home.

Waggles weighs 8.6 lb so he's not a very big guy. He had about 1/3 a can this morning so I'm cautiously optimistic he'll be ok. Please send some vibes for this poor old guy

I felt so bad for him at the shelter as no one wants the seniors so I took him in the day before he was to be euthanized.
post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by spookzilla View Post
I felt so bad for him at the shelter as no one wants the seniors so I took him in the day before he was to be euthanized.
Bless your heart!!! I hope he does well for you. I'm sure he appreciates all you've done for him.
post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by spookzilla View Post
...I'll try diluting his food a bit....I didn't want to make it any less appealing...
Actually, many cats actually prefer a "soupy" dinner......

Quote:
...his mouth is really bothering him (he also has bad teeth which were going to be fixed this week before he got sick)...
So then, I would not only add water, but puree his food in a blender/mixer...it will lessen the chances of pain when he's eating.

You said he's "senior"...you might want to consider some of the information and recommendations on this site and then have a talk with your Vet before the dental work is done http://www.felinecrf.org/related_dis...al_precautions
Dental work - for a cat - is surgery!

If the Vet prescribes something for pain (which should be considered) make sure it's NOT Metacam.

Afterwards, pureed, watery food would be my choice for a while.
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the advice, I added some extra water to his food and he did eat all I offered He's been having about a can a day but he is just so lethargic, I have to literally put it under his nose to get him to eat it. When I do though he seems quite happy to have it.

Now my concern is that he hasn't used the litterbox in over a day. He doesn't move from his bed much, he did come out last night to eat but this morning he just stayed there when I fed him. Since he isn't drinking at all (only through the food), I guess he will have to pee less?

That's pretty scary about Metacam. I haven't thought ahead yet to the dental work, I'm just trying to get him over this awful URI, but when I do I will be sure to do some research. Thanks
post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
When I got home Waggles had gone pee in the box and I got him to eat another 1/3 to 1/2 of a can mixed with water. I'm very cautiously optimistic
post #10 of 10
Sooooooo good to hear!
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