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Lethargic Kitten

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I have an informal rescue service. I try to rehome all the neighborhood strays, or at least put out food and water for the feral cat in the area. One of my rescues was a very pregnant queen.

The pregnancy went well, and her amazing litter of 6 kittens are now 9 weeks old. They were all active, energetic, eating well and seemingly healthy until a few days ago. I went to a ren fair and when I came home later the same day, one little kitten was limping. I discovered the problem was a torn claw, and after some styptic she seemed fine. It's been almost a week now, and she's no longer limping, but she sleeps all the time. The others rampage through the house, pouncing and clawing just as this one used to, but she just lays there and watches the others. And atop it all, her back feet tremble when she starts to sleep, especially if she lays on her back. She has become so quiet, but I don't think this is just a case of a personality change.

I'm worried that something happened to make her ill when I went to the fair. None of my housplants are toxic, I don't use pesticides, and my home is baby-proofed, so I don't know what she could have gotten into. Can anyone tell me if this is something I should be worried about, and what I can try to rule out before taking her to a vet? SHould I take her off the adoption list, or just add a caveat stating that she may need vet care? Any help would be great!
post #2 of 11
She needs the vet now! I'm especially concerned about the lethargy, NEVER a good sign for any cat, much less a kitten, and the thing with her legs. Don't wait to get her to the vet, take her NOW!
post #3 of 11
It sounds like you've kitten proofed well and already ruled out any obvious causes. It's time for a vet. Maybe there's an infection or even something unrelated to the claw incident going on.
post #4 of 11
I would also suggest a vet.

A hypothesis may perhaps be she fastened with her paw. Outwardly it was a claw going. Invardly something broke.

And now it hurts so she keeps down.

Whatever. A vet should look at her.

Good luck,

and tx for you helping these our little brethren.
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
I am beginning to be afraid to leave them in the house alone! I went to my friend's house for dinner tonight, and when I came home, ANOTHER kitten was limping on the same paw as the other, and the first one's limp was back. They must not be in too much pain, because they allowed me to lay them on their backs and thouroughly inspect their legs and paws.

No puncture wounds or bites or scratches. No broken bones. No swelling. Nothing to indicate anything other than a pulled muscle, which is what I'm beginning to think it is. They have lately taken to climbing from my couch to the tall bookshelf, then diving off. They will both go to the vet tomorrow. I called around today and found one that is willing to help me by dividing up the payments.

These little girls should be up and about soon, I hope. I'll update you all as soon as I know anything. Fingers crossed.
post #6 of 11
Please do a search here about Calici virus. For some reason I think there was a post about 6 months to a year ago about a presentation with limping being the first symptom.

These little ones are at the right age to be contracting these viruses. Just a thought...something to look into and be pro-active about if need be.

Lots of good energy coming your way that your little ones are on the mend soon.

I second Stefan's thanks for helping your local ferals. One at a time does make a difference.
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
The two limpers were taken to the vet, and he examined them. He didn't feel there was a need for x-rays, and said it is probably just an over-extended joint or a pulled muscle. He told me to watch them over the next few days, and if they don't improve to bring htem back for another look. I have never heard of the calici virus, and I'm wondering if the vet has either. Either way, I'll call and ask. It might be time for a return visit. Thank you all for your help, support and positive energy. It helps me remember that I'm doing the right thing.
post #8 of 11

two limping kitties does sound very much like calcivirus, I agree with kittymonsters- it is also sometimes called the limping kitten syndrome.


If you are fostering other litters keep the litters seperated from one another, as it can be transmitted by sneezing kittens.

Have they been vaccinated against cat flue recently? Then it could be a reaction to the vaccination.

Have a look in their mouth- watch out for oral ulcerations and watch their temperatures!

Watch your little kitties well and go to the vets if in doubt, but most kitties do recover on their own.

good luck to all of your paws,

post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much for that link. I looked and looked online for a description and the best I found was the Wiki version, which said nothing about limping. I did call the vet today and asked him if the virus was possible, but he said it's not likely, since they have no sinus or respiratory problems and their mouths were free of sores.

I'll continue to check them, since they are so willing to cooperate in return for a good chin rub, and at the first sign of sores, they'll go right back to the vet.

They have NOT been vaccinated for anything, but neither they nor their mother go outside. I made sure when I gave away the first two kittens (at 6 weeks old, a few weeks ago) to tell the new owner that they've had no vet care.

If they do end up with the Calcivirus, then all I can think of is that the mother had it before I got her. None of my kitties are allowed outside. I've got a 10 yr old rescue, the mother cat and the four kittens that I have yet to find a home for. None of them are sneezing, have fevers, or any nasal discharge or anything. But , sincerely, thank you all for all your help. It makes me feel better to know what to watch out for.
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
All four babies are active and playful once more, with no limping! No sores ever presented themselves, and no fevers. If it was Calcivirus, it was very mild! I'm so happy that my little monsters are better. Thank you all so very much for helping me know what to watch out for.

And they don't even get near the bookcase now! No more air-assaulting kitties!
post #11 of 11
I just read you post. I'm so glad that they are doing well now. You take great care of them. Continued that they all grow up happy and healthy.
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