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Need advice on older sick cat

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I'm hoping you all might have some advice about an older cat (over 16 yrs). We had some blood work done last week and he is low on potassium. We were boarding him last week while we were away and they gave him fluids and some supplements on just about a daily basis and when we brought him home he was looking better. Now he is back to his pre-vet visit behavior and just wanders around the house with his head down and just seems to be looking for a place to "go", if you know what I mean - just any old dark corner and stands there. Have any of you experienced this type of behavior? He doesn't see or hear very well any longer and I'm afraid we are getting close to the end - the quality of life just doesn't seem to be there and I'm really torn about what to do. Thanks in advance for any thoughts you may have.
post #2 of 7
I TOTALLY can feel what you are going through. In December, Angel stopped eating. She would go to her dish to drink, but would not eat. She, too, just kind of was not there. Her personality was gone. I tried and tried to get her to eat her favorite things (Fancy Feast), but I couldn't get it down her throat. The vet gave her a steroid shot to see if that would give her a jump and bring her appetite back, but it didn't. In a matter of a week, she was becoming pretty boney and got to the point to where she would go under the couch and didn't want to come out. It was very painful to watch her be like this and knowing she had to be just famished, but the thought of putting her to sleep was pure torture, as well.

We did put her to sleep. It was the worst thing to experience, but it was just as bad knowing she had no quality of life anymore. I am still not over it and that was in December.

That was just our experience. I am sure your vet and other people with more knowledge can guide you better than I am able to!

Best wishes.....!
post #3 of 7
I don't have any advice to offer but I just wanted to give you ((HUGS)). I'll keep your baby in my prayers.
post #4 of 7
What a difficult time for you,

I'll move this to the Health & Nutrition Forum where our experts will be more likely to see it.
post #5 of 7
First I want to send you a big ((((((((((HUG)))))))))) I myself have a seinor cat she'll be 17 in May. I'm wondering if it would be possible for you to do the supplements & fluids at home? My cat has Chronic Renal failure & I have been giving her sub-Q fluids at home for almost a year & a half now & I will tell you it has made the world of differnce in how she feels. I also give her a high blood pressure pill every day. I believe I'm very lucky because my cat loves & trusts me just as much as I do her so doing these medical cares is easier for me than for some people. I do think that if you feel this is not a possibility for you that you should prepare your self for the heart breaking decision you face. I myself have not had to make that decision, but am preparing for the inevitable. It's my deepest hope that I come home one day & my cat has "fallen asleep" forever in her favorite spot on the couch. If putting your cat down turns out to be as difficult an idea as it is for most everyone here then there are lots of books on the subject of pet loss & I'm sure that there are a lot of people here that know of places you can get the support you need. I'm so sorry to hear about your baby & I hope no matter what that you will have peace about your decision.
post #6 of 7
Hang in there! I know what it is like.. I had a cat who got CRF (Chronic Renal Failure) and did Sub Q's - it helped for a while but the damage was just too much. I had to put her to sleep about 2-3 weeks after the treatments.

What helped me was having the vet come to my home and put her to sleep while I was holding her on my lap. My friends who were with me to give me moral support told me later that it was one of the most peaceful passings she has ever seen (she has seen a lot of cats being put to sleep). I knew Sunni would be upset if I took her to the vet and I didn't want her last moments to be bad - all upset and scared. Instead she was calm, relaxed and went peacfully..

I HATE the thought of u having to put your cat to sleep if it's bad BUT IF it comes to that, think about having it done at home where she's most comfortable and with u there..
post #7 of 7
You can help out this cat by getting some powdered potassium from your vet and adding it to his food. His behavior is brought on by the low potassium in his blood, causing this anemic type of lethargy. Also with a low potassium level, the kidney's will not function well.

As for when it is time to make that decision, you will know. When the cat starts to drink more water than he eliminates, when he just wants to lay around and not get up anymore. Major problems with using the litterbox, either constipated or diarrhea, or when he starts to vomit a lot or just can't chew. But your best gauge is to look in his eyes, when the spark starts to fade you need to make the decision. My heart goes out to you and to him. I know, you will not let him suffer.
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