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Help-advice need

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
Hi I'm new to the site but I have an urgent question to ask, in case someone can give some insight.

I have a concern about one of the stray kittens we have. The kitten was born about 2/3 weeks back in our garden. Recently the mother cat has moved the kitten out of hiding and on the same day a cat from another house came in and attacked the kittens.

I don't know the details, but all I know is that the kitten was bitten on the neck and there are 2 pucture wounds and it was bleeding a lot. We went to the hospital and was told the temperature is low and the heart rate is faint.

The kitten was on drip for about a day and the hospital called and said the chance of survival is rare and gave her back to us.

The kitten is still drinking water and some milk (the hospital didnt advise which supplements to give but for some reason, she can't stand or sit and has been lying down for the past few days.

She move her hind legs and her front legs independently but when she tries to sit, her neck just doesn't hold up. I don't really know how to explain it, apart from that it flops from one side to the other so she has no balance. (I assume when the older cat got hold of her by the neck, it started to shake her around, so maybe something is broken but we don't know what.) The vet suspected that she may have fractured something in her spine but was very vague.

I think they have given up on her but we don't want to. Is there anything you can think of that we could do, or give her (the hospital didnt tell us what to feed her but gave us some antibiotic medication or something of the like?)

Please. any advice is most appreciated.
post #2 of 20
"The kitten was on drip for about a day and the hospital called and said the chance of survival is rare and gave her back to us."

That sounds fishy to me--if a kitten's chances of survival are slim a vet or hospital will normally recommend euthanasia. It just does not seem likely to me that they would send such an animal home to be cared for by people who do not have the training and skills to take care of it.

But, on the odd chance that this did in fact happen, here's what to do.

The kitten has puncture wounds to the neck and was sent home with antibiotics. Use them as directed--the kitten should receive a dose every 12 hours. If you've been given a specific dosage, DO NOT exceed that dosage. DO NOT discontinue the antibiotics, efen if the kitten appears OK, until they are gone.

Puncture wounds are serious business, especially if inflicted by another cat. A cat's mouth is a microbiological zoo. It's teeth are long, sharp and smooth, and the bite wound does tend to be a puncture rather than a laceration. A puncture doesn't tend to bleed as much and closes faster than a laceration. This means that the bacteria transmitted by the bite tend not to be flushed out and often create an infectious abcess. This is both painful and dangerous for the cat. Not much fun for humans bitten by cats either--I've seen a few go to the ER.

In addition to medicating the kitten make sure she is hydrated and eats regularly. Do not give her cow's milk--that's worthless nutritionally. Give her water for hydration. For food, a kitten that age is ready for and often prefers solid dry food, but in this case if she's injured a softer diet might be better. Any good pet store will sell KMR, which is a formula designed specifically for kittens and can be bought in liquid and powdered form. That alone is good for most kittens, but at your kitten's age I'd mix in some wet kitten food. The mix should be a kind of slurry the kitten can lap up--don't spare the water. Use a relatively flat dish if she has trouble reaching the food on her own.

She may need to be fed manually--in this case it seems that a feeding syringe (also available at most pet stores) is the best way to do it. Be patient, and give her little "squirts"--let her swallow a few times before giving her the next one. A tube of feline vitamin paste is also a good thing to have--when you're done feeding put a small dab on your fingertip and apply it to the roof of the kitten's mouth.

The food and the antibiotics work together. The antibiotics go after the bacteria deposited in the wound and promote healing. The food strengthens the kitten and its natural immune system, which also promotes healing.

If the kitten does not recover or only partially recovers, consider taking her to a different vet. Humans get second opinions all the time--no reason cats shouldn't....
post #3 of 20
I agree with the above but would skip the dry food and only feed wet food specially designed for kittens. It is packed with more calories, nutrients and fats which a kitten needs.
If the kitten is interested in drinking and eating then that is a very good sign.

Her neck may just be very damaged but not necessarily broken. I would encourage her to rest so that she can heal properly.
post #4 of 20
The other posters are correct. I would also make sure she is kept warm. Throw a towel in the dryer for about 10 minutes and then make a sort of nest for the kitten. Kittens eat better and stress less when they are warm and cozy.
I hate to say it, but most vets look at strays/ferals very differently than "house pets". In your case it will be a long road uphill, but worth it. I have saved kittens in far worse shape, and if the the worst should happen you will know that this kitten was given every shot at recovery. I would also seek a new vet, you want a vet that will share your commitment to any animal that you would bring in.
post #5 of 20
Thread Starter 

Firstly, thank you all for your advice, I really appreciate it. I also just want to update you a little about Chokedee (we have named him (I thought it was a she but she is actually a he) "good luck" in Thai).

As per your suggestions, I went ahead and got the KMR milk formula for him and a couple of nursing bottles and he has been lapping it up. We've cleaned him up a little because we realised the hospital had not cleaned up the blood that was clotting up his nose, I think that's why he was breathing through his mouth and left it open a lot.

He seems to be a little more active but not as much as we would like. He can still move his legs and has attempted to get up a couple of times but to our sadness, he is having difficulty with that because everytime he tries to stand or sit up, his neck doesn't hold up and keeps flopping from side to side. If his neck is broken, can he move other parts of his body?

His legs and pads on his feet are getting a little colder so we try to gently massage him to get the blood circulating (he's often sleeping on one side for prolonged periods of time cos he can't move by himself unless we wake him up to feed him) and I am kind of relieved yesterday because for the first time in many days I saw him try to poop and pee.

He doesn't have much energy in him because he wasn't taking in much nutrients, just water and another milk formula not designed for kittens (so thanks for the recommendation on KMR). Anyway, I fed him some water and milk yesterday and he meowed quite a bit and then much to my excitement (I know, weird) I saw him trying to poo. So I massaged him a little and helped him out the only way I could. Then after the massage he also peed. God, I was relieved about that at least his system is not completely destroyed. I have my fingers crossed and will keep feeding him regularly, whilst I am at work my mum is helping to look after him.

We talk to him every night just to kind of give him some love and encouragement.. I know.. that might sound weird to some people but hey, it's the only way we know how. The vet had previously said that he will be brain damaged but didnt' go into it, so I don't quite know if that is having any effect on his coordination and movement. He is always falling asleep though and though his eyes have opened he's not very responsive to movement.. and doesn't blink much.

I am trying to research a few vets to take him to in Singapore because the hospital we usually go to for our cats has really disappointed me in their treatment of him. Yes he is a stray, yes he may not survive but seriously, I was really PISSED off (for lack of a better expression) that they couldn't care less about him. Of all the cats we've brought to them for treatment, this is the first time I have ever experienced such poor consideration for the animals and the owners and trust me, we've tried out enough animal hospitals and vet clinics. So I am in search of one here that won't dismiss him or tell us he needs to be put down.

Also, to answer a few comments and clarify a few things:-

ipw533: Yes, I know it sounds fishy.. even I think there is something wrong with the whole situation and feel very disheartened by it.
"That sounds fishy to me--if a kitten's chances of survival are slim a vet or hospital will normally recommend euthanasia. It just does not seem likely to me that they would send such an animal home to be cared for by people who do not have the training and skills to take care of it."
- I agree with you that good vets and hospitals would usually do that.. because they care about animals. Unfortunately, from my experience, animal hospitals here are not always about .. the animals. They run it as a business here, so if they cannot be bothered they often opt for the "let's put him down" option or "keep him in hospital and let us charge you lots of money".

Our old vet was great, he took care of all of our cats before but he wasn't there anymore and I don't know how to find him cos he has always been at that hospital - I did ask after him but no information was given. I also agree with you and find it appalling that they would send him back to us with only a bottle of antibiotics and not much else - no advice, no follow ups, no nothing. We did ask at the counter, after paying about $600 for his stay at the hospital for that night, when we should remove the plastic wrap they had on his leg, what we should do or feed him but was only given a blank indifferent stare from the trainee attending to us. They had him on drip for a little while and had him in an airconditioned room when we last saw him after he was shaven. So you know, I'm actually happier that he is with us - not trained people- but at least we love and care for him. Thank you for the tip on KMR though, he seems to really like that, but I'm not sure if he is taking enough of it. We give him a fair amount of water cos he gets thirsty often.

CC12: He is interested in eating and drinking, the water we feed through a syringe, but the milk I have given him in a bottle. He likes sucking on that but it doesn't seem like he is getting much milk out of it cos the bottle always seems fairly full by the time he's tired and drifted off to sleep. Anyway, I'll keep trying, if it doesn't work so well I will try giving it with a syringe again. Any idea on how much a kitten should be taking? Thank you for your advice, I really appreciate it.

kat89447: I will definitely try that tip with the warm towel, we live in Asia so it is generally always warm but I will try that because he must miss cozying up to his mum and siblings. We will keep thinking positively and give him the attention and care he needs. I'm aiming to take him to a new vet when I find one by wednesday latest. Thanks again for your encouragement, it means a lot.

Sorry I was kind of longwinded, but I'll keep you guys updated in case you want to know Chokedee's progress. I was going to put a pic of him up cos he is a cute lil'un but I don't know how to put pics on here yet (my internet savvy is really not up to scratch).

Thanks again everyone
post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
ipw533: I know you mentioned in your post that I should get him some feline vitamin paste - I'm not really sure what I am looking for here so if you could mention a name of one, I'll go out and get it today. Thank you for all your explanation and advice, I have conveyed the message to my mum as well, so she understands the situation a bit better. Again, like I've mentioned before, all your advice and help is always appreciated. Thank you.
post #7 of 20
This is one example I found.
You are doing a great job and a wonderful thing giving little Chokedee a shot at life.

I thought this article on raising orphaned kittens could help.

Don't worry about being long winded. We are here to help.
post #8 of 20
Hang in there! This kitten is so lucky to have you.

Couple of things I thought of that might help. The bottles for nursing the KMR milk may not have a large enough hole in the nipple for him to suck the milk. I put several holes in them with a large needle or I have cut a tiny piece off at an angle with scissors.

To help keep his body temp up I used rice socks. Take a large or long tube/atheletic type sock and fill with rice. Tie the end and put this sock inside another sock and tie the end. Heat in a microwave for 2 minutes and place next to kitten. If sock feels too warm, cover it with a towel. It stays warm for a long time. I think cats in general have a normal body temp around the 102 degree range. Good luck to you
post #9 of 20
Massage the kitten with your fingers lightly, to keep blood circulation going.

Also, maybe a little soft baby food - Gerbers no. 2 puree of turkey, chicken, or ham with NO GARLIC and NO ONION powder, just should say meat, broth, water and salt on the ingredient label. Not sure your geographic location - if in Asia you may not be able to get Gerbers baby food. LOL.

The rice warmers work well. There is a product called a snuggle disk, you can use that too, order via the web, from Dr. Foster's website

They are called Snuggle Disks... you warm them in the microwave and
then they stay warm for hours...

Gentle movement of limbs and body with the head supported may also help...if there is some muscle damage that can cause the head lolling. If the limbs move independently then the spinal cord IS NOT damaged. Good news eh?

I would also do a vet consult if you can via Best Friends website, they have a forum with a genuine vet on board to give advice on how best to nurse the wee one... this is their site: find the forums and join, there is one for pet health... vet monitored as I said, and she's a very good and nice vet.
Should be able to advise you better...

Best of luck with Chokeedee (sp?!)
post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone,

Just a little update on Chokedee, he is looking a progressively better each day which we are happy about I am giving him KMR and he seems to be liking it but still not taking as much as he should.

Good news! He has taken to soft canned kitty food which I got him, he ate about 2 spoonfuls of that mixed with some water to make it easier for him to swallow. We will alternate between the milk and the kitty food and keep you up to date on his progress. I am very happy though to know he is eating and doing his toilet business regularly.

I also cleaned his face with a warm towel today and got rid of the gunk off his eyes but I'm not going to give him a wash yet incase he gets really cold etc. So just making sure he is as clean as he can be right now. He was looking up at me and it was the cutest sight, at least his eyes have got a little sparkle to them now, so I'm taking it as a good sign. Just thought you may want to have a look at the little guy you have all contributed to help. I cannot say thank you enough

He wasn't too happy about the flash here and gave a loud miaow - at least we know he is pretty vocal LOL

Getting his chin scratched after having his milk, we took him out of the little cage so he can have a bit of air, look around and stretch out properly. Isn't he cute? Despite looking like a little rat face now I think he will be really handsome when he grows up!

Baby Chokedee trying to have a little conversation here

On the road to recovery, slowly but surely - fingers crossed - thank you all for your kind advice and support through this - really means a lot to us.

His brothers and sisters sleeping with the mum (Tiptop is at the other side) after being fed the green bowl was filled and she ate it up real quick, I suppose feeding 4 kitties must be hardwork!

Anyway I got them their own cage now, so they're staying there until they are bigger, in case the other cat comes back and attacks again - at least they are safer that way. As you can see, we have a set of twins. The black, white and orange blob in the middle is actually 2 kitties huddled together. They are a messy bunch - all the little grains were actually from the cat litter - they like jumping in it like a bunch of kids playing in a sandpit.

Skimble:Thank you for your tip on the rice socks, I took your advice and did just that so he has something to curl up to at night, we also gave him a pink hippo... cos it doesn't have too much fur to shed (in case he starts licking it or something) and is soft and cuddly enough for him. The rice socks are great and does really help to keep him cosy, so thank you again!

Opilot: The rice socks are great but I will definitely check out the links you gave and I am definitely gonna log into so a big thank you to you for letting me know
I hope everyone is well - will keep you all in the loop on his progress.
post #11 of 20
Thank you for the update. So very glad to hear the little guy is thriving. I'm glad the rice socks helped. When my orphans started lapping canned food I mixed in the KMR milk to dilute it instead of water. Trying to get as much nutrition in them as I could. Praying he continues to improve. You are such an awesome mom taking care of him. He really needs you.
post #12 of 20
You can see the love in his eyes. What a sweetie pie. I am really rooting for him to get better.
post #13 of 20
Awww, what a heart throb! He looks a little wormy (first pic), that bloated belly, but don't worry about that just yet-he is too sick to be treated for worms right now, that can come when he is strong again. You are his angel on earth! Keep a close eye on how much he eats, poops, and pees, and if ANYTHING changes take him to a DIFF vet, kittens can go down very very very very fast. Your vet sounds like he sucks, if you feel the need to take him to the vet, consider going to a diff one, look in the phone book and call around, explain the situation.

Good luck with your new baby!
post #14 of 20
Thread Starter 
Hi Everyone,

I hope you are all well.. as promised, I just wanted to give you all a little update on Chokedee, our little tyrant LOL

We took him to the vet about 4 days back and the vet suspected his neck may be broken. We took an x-ray and sure enough, the 2nd bone from his skull had twisted in a funny way and was much bigger than the other bones (ok.. sidenote - I may sound like a complete idiot here because I have no idea what the technical terms are for this so bear with me.)

Anyway, the conclusion was that his neck is broken, there is apparently less than 40% chance that he will be able to walk again, the vet urged us to opt for ... you guessed it.. euthanasia. All this was within the first 15 minutes before the x-ray was taken.

I mentioned that the last consultation we had at the hospital no x-ray or neuroligical exam was conducted so it may be good to do one??! The vet agreed to this hence the results about the funky shaped neck bone.

Little Chokedee put up a good fight though because it took about 20 minutes before they could actually hold him down to get a proper xray done. He's still got a fighting spirit in him as you can tell

I cried a bit.. ok a lot .. when I heard that the vet thought it was best if we put him down. We came to an agreement though towards the end, that we will monitor his condition for one month and make a decision then. It wouldn't be fair to just end it without trying to help him heal properly and give him the best treatment first. He has to go in for a check up every week to see how he is progressing. The vet told us to continue with the antibiotics we have and also to give him 0.2cc of vitamins and minerals once a day and some yellow medicine which wasn't labelled but is suppose to help him with going to the toilet in case he has constipation - 0.3cc of that twice a day.

So now, our little fighter has his neck in a makeshift brace made out of a strip of xray film wrapped in gauze and bandage and taped around his neck. He wasn't very keen on this as you can imagine but it should help keep his neck from flopping around too much.

On the upside, he has been taking in more of his KMR and we also have him on soft kitten food. He doesn't seem to like to chew so he just sucks the juice and spits the meat out. BUT we have gotten him a fancy feast meal which is not so chunky and he seems to be liking that on its own.

Despite taking the no-name yellow medicine which is suppose to help, he still hasn't pooped and his stomach is pretty big.. I'm not really sure if that is normal or not? He doesn't seem to be in too much pain, maybe a little discomfort from having such a bloated tummy but I'm not sure what the cause is or how to help him poo. He is eating normally, KMR at night, Normal kitten food in the morning, he takes a good amount of water daily. He still pees and it's pretty clear so I don't see any problems coming from that. Anyway, if you have any tips on this, I'd really appreciate it

He is getting more active with each passing day, he has tried to stand and get up on his own often but once he gets up he often falls, part of the learning process for him I think cos at least he gets to use his legs. Sometimes he manages to sit up but I usually have to put my hand out to balance him, just in case. It must suck to have to lie down constantly, so it's good he tries to get up and sit down. He can't walk yet but soon, I hope.

I've been carrying him out and about, just to get him to see the sights and get some sun. I would hate to be stuck in a little cage all day so I think he is enjoying that, at least he likes the sun anyway.

My only concern right now is his bloated tummy and this funky lump that has appeared on his tail. I have no clue what that is... but it looks weird so I will have to ask the vet the next time we go in.

Anyway.. sorry I was a little all over the place, hope everyone and their kitty family is well and thank you for reading More updates soon!

Take care everyone
post #15 of 20
sending fresh & for the brave little fighter, Chokedee!
post #16 of 20
Have you been stimulating him after each meal? It may take several minutes of stimulation before he poops if hes constipated. Some hairball gel would help with that, just a pea sized glob though, for a few days. He really REALLY needs to poo though, the toxins are building up.... get a paper towel, wet it with warm water, wring it out, and carefully rub his anus. Kittens are not about to 'go' by themselves, their mothers stimulate them until they can do it on their own. Be very careful and soft though, or he will get raw back there. Call the vet and tell him he hasn't pooed, this is very serious, we lost a feral bottle baby that hadn't pooed in 2-3 days and I think if we just could have got him to poo some how he would have lived...

I will keep you both in my prayers!
post #17 of 20
Bless you for taking care of this special little guy!

My thoughts and prayers are with Chokedee
post #18 of 20
Thanks for the update.I would be like you and not give up too. Giving him a chance is the best thing to do. He sounds so sweet.
post #19 of 20
How is he doing???
post #20 of 20
Somehow I missed this whole thread. I am so scared that there's been no update because you decided it was best to put him to sleep - but you've been so dedicated to him and he seemed like such a little fighter! I fear the worst - but am hoping for the best!

What an angel you are.

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