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Please Help My Cat Won't Eat !!

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone! I'm sorry is this post is a bit long, but I'm trying to be as comprehensive as possible to give you a clear picture of the situation).

Let me start by saying that I have taken Samson to the vet twice so far and they are completely baffled. Aside from a slight bladder infection they have found nothing wrong with him and they ran a whole battery of tests, incl. a total body function test. For the bladder infection Dasuquin and Baytril have been prescribed, which I give him once a day, per instructions.

Upon the second visit, the 2nd vet, (there are 2 vets at the clinic I go to) just as baffled as the first, prescribed Mirtazapine to stimulate his appetite. Doesn't seem to be helping much so far. I have to give him 1/4 of a pill once every 3 days. He's had 2 doses so far.

It has been 2 weeks since he has stopped eating. During this time, my husband and I have been assist feeding him. It has not been very easy as Samson does not accept it and we can only feed him the equivalent of a tablespoon or so before he goes completely nuts and we have to let him go. Twice on separate occasions he has eaten on his own after we assisted fed him, but the next day he does not go back to eating on his own again.

I have tried giving him the food he loves, Natural Balance Venison and Natural Balance Duck dry kibbles. He won't touch it. I have tried giving him different brands and flavors hoping to find something new that might excite him.

He is thankfully drinking water He is also still alert and playful. We have tried playing with him hoping this will stimulate his hunger and sometimes it has helped.

During the last visit in March, I had the vet take an X-Ray of his chest because he was always wheezing and getting out of breath easily. They did find what they believe to be a cyst, but told me that it was nothing to be concerned about, except to observe if there was any changes in him etc. Funny thing is that in the past two months his breathing has improved and he doesn't wheeze or "whistle" when he is sleeping. The vet even commented that his heart was strong and his lungs clear.

The vet recommends that if after the week-end Samson is not eating with the appetite stimulant that we should get another X-Ray to see if there is any change in the cyst that might be causing pressure against another organ or something. So I guess we will have to go with that.

Prior to when he stopped eating, I had been feeding him Natural Balance Venison. Later I then gave him some Organix's. Both my cats really liked the Organix's. Unfortunately PetSmart ran out of the Organix so I went back to Natural Balance Venison and both were happy, especially Samson.

However when the Organix's came back in stock I went back and picked some up. Well now Samson no longer wanted it . Of course I immediatey went back to the Natural Balance, but now Samson didn't want that either! That's when he started to stop eating.

I am concerned that he has developed food aversion, that is my gut feeling, especially since he is still alert playful, etc. I made sure to tell all of this to my vet, but he doesn't think it's food aversion. He says that only happens to older cats with kidney failure. he did mention that Samson was slightly dehydrated, but did not give him a shot or anything to I guess rehydrate him.

In desperation today, I opened a can of tuna and gave Samson the juice to see if he would drink it. I have done this in the past, because the juice itself is good for them occasionally for their fur, but he has never wanted it. Well, today he drank the juice! I was so happy!! I went ahead and added pieces of tuna to the juice and he ate those too! I also put pieces of tuna on his wet food in the hope that he will eat the wet that way.

Any advice or suggestions?? If it was your cat would you get the 2nd X-Ray done? Should I forget the X-Ray and get a another opinion?

Is there any wet food you know of that might appeal to him in this type of situation?

Thank you for taking the time to read this, I sure do appreciate it!
post #2 of 23
Get the stinkiest fish cat food you can find, add extra water to it to make some juice, and warm it in the microwave. That worked when one of my cats was ill and wouldn't eat. Baby food in jars warmed up may also work too.
post #3 of 23
Just sent you a PM
post #4 of 23
When my one rex was sick, he refused to eat anything. I boiled up chicken and force fed him shredded chicken till he ate on his own. After 2-3 days of this he decided to eat canned cat food.

Perhaps your cat would do better on canned foods. Are you sure his teeth are ok and no abcesses?
post #5 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
When my one rex was sick, he refused to eat anything. I boiled up chicken and force fed him shredded chicken till he ate on his own. After 2-3 days of this he decided to eat canned cat food.

Perhaps your cat would do better on canned foods. Are you sure his teeth are ok and no abcesses?
Yes the vet checked his teeth and said they were fine, I'm not sure if he checked for abcesses though, so thank you very much for bringing it up, I will ask the vet to check again.

I have been feeding him canned, I just offered him the dry kibbles because he used to love it and I was hoping that it would entice him to eat, but it hasn't

Earlier this afternoon I offered him some tuna and he ate it, I was so relieved, but now he's wanting to eat again, but he won't go near the tuna. I am getting *so* worried

Thank you both for your responses, it means a lot!
post #6 of 23
I know you want him to eat but fish is bad for a cat for bladder problems. My Cat have pulled the not eating before and it was the antibiotics taht caused them to not want eat. Coco did that when she was on clavamox and other antibiotics. We had to switch to baytril which worked for her. Her problem was a bladder infection also. My Vet said never give fish to a cat with bladder trouble because it can make it worse. I did before I knew and it was alot worse after.
post #7 of 23
do you have some clam juice??

flaked salmon ??

beef livers chicken livers...
post #8 of 23
I assume your vet instructed you that it is essential that cats NEED to eat. Unlike us, they have no reserve and it can really affect their kidneys and liver, leading to serious illness. Also, not wanting to eat can be a symptom of
something more serious.

Did your vet give him any subq fluids with glucose or any of the important vitamins a cat needs. (Obviously not the same ones we or other mammals need but cats need certain types of substances- protein, taurine, etc.) Some people will force feed their kitty - but that os when a cat is not even drinking water.

Have you tried certain kinds of baby food. We sometimes try chicken baby food for finicky eaters and MOST cats tend to LOVE the stuff!

We actually have had a few people bring their cats here because they refused to eat only to discover th kitty was upset or bored with the current offerings at home? Could that be the case here? (That would be too easy I know but I had to ask - you never know. )

What about her teeth? If a cat has problems with her teeth or mouth, eating could be difficult and painful. That is where the baby food again might help. It is possible she is eating too much dry food and not enough soft food which is essential for good diets. Cats like to have some variation even if it is the same brand of food.

You could evemn try warming her food to see if that helps.

Finally, is she stressed for any reason? One of the number one reasons we see cats nt eating is stress- any significant changes in your family, in your cat's life recently? Anything that might bother her - a new person in the home, a new animal nearby, sometimes it is a small issue that you and your family did not even think about. Studies show that cats are VERY easily stressed and when stressed, they sometimes just stop eating. You might check for stress factors and give her extra attention and more play and TLC and see how that works. Could another cat or child or anyone be bothering her and thus causing stress? (It may seem like nothing to you but to her, it could be really distressing!)

Is she an inside or outside cat? Is it possible someone is feeling her outside- that is never good because she could be earing something she should not. There are many dangers outside for cats but this is not the time to discuss that. Someone else with access to your cat is one potential problem, even when someone means well. Or do they - they could be feeding her to eventually entice her somewhere else. (I am not a fan of cats being outdoors on their own as you can tell - I have seen too many cats hit by cars, brought in because of accidents or lost when someone picked them up and did God knows what!) This is just a thought - since you mentioned it.

Someone mentioned tuna with all its mercury and other heavy metals (the elements, not the bands, ) - yes, tuna is bad for cats but now and then, one can - if it helps her appetite can't hurt. This os often how feral cats are captured so they can be s/n and released to their colony or adopted to a new home or their companions.

If those kind of actions do not work, I would obtain second opinion. I wish you luck - hope it is nothing serious and you find the answer!
post #9 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much everyone for your replies I really appreciate you all taking the time to respond!

I do have some chicken livers on hand Sharky, thank you I guess I should boil them a bit first before giving it to him as he is not used to raw.

Well, the vet did not mention anything about sores in his mouth and i have not seen any, but I will double check.

I'm not sure about the stress. The only thing I can think of is that my husband has recently been diagnosed with a motor neuron disease. Thankfully it is not the fast progressive type, but he has lost the use of one of his legs Because of that things have changed the way we do things at home. Unfortunately it has meant less play time for the babies although I have been making sure to spend some time playing with both my both the boys these past couple of days I will do my best to keep it up and see if it helps Samson.

Siobhan both my babies are strictly indoor cats. One of my worst fears is them sneaking out, getting lost or being stolen, so I am always watchful. like you, I'm definitely not a fan of letting cats outside either.

No the vet did not give him any subq fluids with glucose or vitamins and to be honest, I'm rather concerned about that because he said Samson was slightly dehydrated. Thankfully though he is drinking some water and when we assist feed him, I make sure to mix his canned food with water.

Mews2much I *completely* agree that the tuna is not the best choice and that it can make his bladder infection worse but I was *so* desperate, at my wits end, and Samson drank mostly the juice and ate maybe the equivalent of a tablespoon or two at most. But I won't give him any tomorrow. I was just hoping it would stimulate his appetite enough that he would eat his regular canned food, which he normally loves.

I will also get some of the clam juice and flaked salmon that you recommended Sharky thank you, I would not have thought of that. Also clpeters23 thank you for that recommendation on a stinky cat food. I will try that too, but because of his bladder infection, it's best if I avoid fish flavors.

Can anyone recommend a good smelly cat food, canned? Meow Mix maybe?

Thank you once again everyone! You have no idea how much your help means to me!
post #10 of 23
I sure hope you get him to eat.
post #11 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shanynne View Post
Can anyone recommend a good smelly cat food, canned? Meow Mix maybe?
many of the Meow Mix ones are fish heavy - read the ingredients.
heat up the food before offering - makes it smellier. oh, also, i add brewer's yeast [got it at the health section @ drug emporium] to my homemade food. mine like it - & it's fairly strong smelling [i can tell if it's in there].
good luck!
post #12 of 23
meow mix ... fancy feast .. friskies
post #13 of 23
How about boiling some chicken and shredding it to see if he will eat that.
I would encourage you to get a second opinion.
Something is making him not eat and you need to know why.
post #14 of 23
Thread Starter 
I will give the chicken a try! Thanks!

Also just want to add these are the tests the vet has done so far:

1 Total Body Function : neg.
1 Urinalysis : slight bladder infection found
1 Felv / FIV : neg.

Any suggestions as to what additional tests might be done?
post #15 of 23
dumb ?? when was last kidney value done??
post #16 of 23
Little late to this but please check the gums and make sure there is no yellowing. That can be a sign of hepatic lipidosis which needs immediate treatment
Try tempting him with tuna, chicken, ham, any other meat, yogurt,meat baby food no onions. Try sprinkling parmesan cheese over the food and heating it a bit

You may want to consider a feeding tube. They are lifesavers
Best of luck
post #17 of 23
Did he have any blood panel at all?
If he didnt have a blood panel he should get one.
It will tell alot.
If a bladder infection isnt stopped it can go to the kidneys even if its a slight infection.
He also can get liver problems if he dosent eat.
post #18 of 23
I don't know if it helps... but one of my cats had a problem with his gums bleeding sometimes. His teeth were fine, and the vet said that sometimes cats get this kind of gum problem for no real reason. It seems to clear up on its own. You can especially see it on their back gums, and that pain might be causing him not to want to eat.
post #19 of 23
I don't know if this will help but when Rebby was sick and wouldn't eat I would sit with him while he ate and I would keep scooping the food into a pile for him. When he would stop eating I would re-scoop the pile and he would eat more. As long as it kept him eating I was happy.
post #20 of 23
Thread Starter 
Hi Everyone Just want to give an update. Well, Samson ate on his own on Monday, yaaay!, and he ate a lot! However, he threw up a bit that evening and has shied away from food ever since Going to have to assist feed him again he *really* hates that. I have to scruff him and force the food in his mouth

I've been playing with him and his spirits are good but why won't he eat again?? Could it be food aversion ??

There is no yellowing of the gums and no sores in his mouth.

Time for another vet visit.
post #21 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shanynne View Post
Hi Everyone Just want to give an update. Well, Samson ate on his own on Monday, yaaay!, and he ate a lot! However, he threw up a bit that evening and has shied away from food ever since Going to have to assist feed him again he *really* hates that. I have to scruff him and force the food in his mouth

I've been playing with him and his spirits are good but why won't he eat again?? Could it be food aversion ??

There is no yellowing of the gums and no sores in his mouth.

Time for another vet visit.
That is too bad. He ate and then he didn't after throwing up...sounds like food aversion but still something is wrong. If they find nothing maybe they can put him on an appetite stimulator to get his appetite back.
post #22 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CC12 View Post
That is too bad. He ate and then he didn't after throwing up...sounds like food aversion but still something is wrong. If they find nothing maybe they can put him on an appetite stimulator to get his appetite back.
Yes he is on an appetite stimulator, and I'm starting to worry that it's food aversion
post #23 of 23
I just remembered this... for a couple of weeks after we moved, my parent's cat Orion (who was very close to us) wouldn't eat - hardly at all. Believe it or not the vet gave him a vitamin shot(?) and he's been eating like a madman ever since!

Leads me to wonder, maybe it's a vitamin deficiency?
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