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Is this normal for an older kitty?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I have an older cat, named Sasha, who is around 12, though the shelter didn't know for sure when we got her as a 1-2 year old.

Recently we've been noticing some differences with her little belly...A while ago she seemed to be getting thinner with a bit of a hardened, round belly, and we decided it must be worms (weird though, since she usually doesn't eat or catch mice/birds/other small animals). But, we tried her on one of the recommended home treatments for worms. Her belly did go back to normal size and feel, though she didn't seem to gain any weight. Then, a week or so ago, we noticed the same symptoms, a more rounded, hardened belly. Ever since then it has seemed to go back and forth. She eats normally, goes bathroom normally (as far as we can tell with two indoor/outdoor kitties) though(even though she wasn't very active to begin with-much rather have cuddles and sleep than have a play) she seems like she's slowly becoming less active. Not wanting to go up and down stairs as much, sleeping even more than usual. Thankfully there isn't any more weight-loss, though it is hard to tell the subtle differences with her type or coat (medium, tending towards long, very poofy).

Is this all normal for a 12-ish year-old-kitty? Should I be worried, just watch her more than usual, or get ready to call a vet? This is our first older kitty in a long while, and so I'm not sure what the normal is for this age of cat. I did have her on a seniors diet at one point, though there was no difference in her with it, and it was too difficult with a working family and two cats to make sure our much younger cat didn't eat it on her, so we switched her back to their normal. Should we maybe think of putting her back on the Seniors diet and see if that helps?

Any advice/comments are appreciated
post #2 of 7
When was her last senior panel??

What does she eat ( I understand senior but is it wet, dry or homemade)?

OTC wormers often do not do the job ...
post #3 of 7
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
When was her last senior panel??

What does she eat ( I understand senior but is it wet, dry or homemade)?

OTC wormers often do not do the job ...

I would say a vet check with a senior panel, thyroid check, and fecal check is in order. If she has worms, you need the medication the vet can give. And the vet can find out what worms she has, if any. I would also worry about the weight loss and hard belly.

Sending vibes for your kitty.
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
oh wow, haha i guess the majority says call a vet?

We feed mainly dry, and at set times because otherwise they pig out. The brand is Whiskas original, and we mix it with Iams, because Iams is the healthier one, though it costs about 3 times more. The Seniors diet was Iams too.

Well, I dont think it is quite to that point where we rush her off, once I took a minute to look at the thread after I posted it sounded worse than it is, though I still am concerned for my old girl. The weight loss isn't too unusual for them, they each lose a bit once spring rolls around because of the increased activity playing outside. And, after that initial weight loss, there was no more, so I don't think that one is much of a symptom, I just thought I should mention it just in case there actually WAS a connection that I didn't see before. I will however keep a very close eye on her, so if a vet visit IS needed, she will get one. I just don't want to make the decision to take her there a hasty one, because it is very stressful to her and though we could afford it, we would be pretty stretched for the next month (due to SUPER high vet costs, its something like 200$ just for him to look at her, let alone any tests be done. it is also due to this she has never had any of those tests you mentioned. She was very healthy and so we let her be).

Other than worms, any other ideas of what it could be?
post #5 of 7
With seniors it could be so many different things. The problem is that you often don't notice anything is wrong (with internal problems) until they start showing symptoms and then it is too late. Senior panel is a great idea. Have you shopped around to see if maybe there is a low cost clinic near you or some vet that is cheaper? Weight loss is not usually a good thing and the hardened belly is kind of worrisome too.
post #6 of 7
FWIW, IMO the Iams isn't that much better than the Whiskas... especially considering the price difference!
Whiskas 15 pounds for $13.29
Ground Yellow Corn, Chicken By-Product Meal, Corn Gluten Meal, Animal Fat (Preserved with BHA/BHT), Natural Poultry Flavor, Wheat Flour, Rice, Brewers Dried Yeast, Salt, Potassium Chloride, Choline Chloride, Turkey By-Product Meal, Caramel Color, Calcium Carbonate, dl- Methionine, Taurine, Trace Minerals (Zinc Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Potassium Iodide), White Fish Meal, Vitamins (dl-Alpha Tocopherol Acetate [Source of Vitamin E], Folic Acid, Vitamin A Acetate, Niacin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement [Vitamin B2], Vitamin D3 Supplement, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine Mononitrate [Vitamin B1], Biotin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride [Vitamin B6]), Red 3, Ethoxyquin (A Preservative).
Iams 20 pounds for $33.99
Chicken, Chicken By-Product Meal, Corn Meal, Corn Grits, Chicken Meal, Dried Beet Pulp, Dried Egg Product, Natural Chicken Flavor, Sodium Bisulfate, Potassium Chloride, Fish Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols, a source of Vitamin E), DL-Methionine, Brewers Dried Yeast, Choline Chloride, Calcium Carbonate, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Ascorbic Acid, Vitamin A Acetate, Calcium Pantothenate, Biotin, Thiamine Mononitrate (source of vitamin B1), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (source of vitamin B6), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement (source of vitamin B2), Inositol, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid), Minerals (Zinc Oxide, Manganese Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Potassium Iodide, Cobalt Carbonate)
compare to this
Chicken Soup 18 pounds for $24.69
Chicken, Salmon, chicken meal, whole grain brown rice, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), oatmeal, whole grain white rice, potatoes, cracked pearled barley, millet, turkey, duck, flaxseed, natural chicken flavor, salt, choline chloride, chicory root extract, dl-methionine, potassium chloride, taurine, carrots, peas, apples, dried skim milk, kelp, cranberry powder, rosemary, parsley flake. Vitamins and minerals.
all info from petfooddirect.com - these are US prices.
or Petsmart's Authority 20 pounds for $21.99
Chicken & Rice Recipe
Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brewers Rice, Corn Gluten Meal, Ground Corn, Animal Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Natural Flavor, Beet Pulp, Dried Egg Product, Canola Oil, Corn Oil, Potassium Chloride, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, L-Ascorbyl-2 Polyphosphate, Niacin, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamin Mononitrate, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement), Choline Chloride, Minerals (Zinc Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite), Dicalcium Phosphate, Taurine.
post #7 of 7
And shop around too! Chicken Soup by me is $18 for an 18lbs bag.
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