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I need some advice

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
First, I live in a small southern town that does not have a vet that is open or willing to come in over the weekends. I am severely disabled and unable to travel the 70 miles to the nearest vet that is open on the weekends.

I have a wonderful cat that was given to me three years ago. We have no idea how old she is but suspect she is on up in years as she has never been very playful and her teeth are pretty worn down. She was eating regualr dry food before we noticed her teeth and noticed that she was just eating very small amounts at a time, like just enough to keep her going. Since then she has been on moist food and had gained some weight and was really looking great and showing me more love than I deserve.

About 4 days ago I noticed that she had not eaten her food. I changed it out with another flavor and the next day she had not eaten it either. I have since tried one other flavor and have even gotten a new brand thinking maybe she just wanted a change. She will not even eat her treats and before this she was the first in line for treats. We have one other cat and 3 dogs.

She has SEVERE diarrhea and is not even drinking water unless she is doing that when I am asleep. Sh.e is a long hair and I had to give her a bath a little while ago since she had messed all over herself and she has lost quite a bit of weight. She looks like a kitten now. I am heart broke that my baby is suffering.

Her eyes are clear and she still purrs when I pet her. I am the only one that she has ever had anything to do with so her not being friendly with other members of the house is not out of the ordinary.

Please, is there anything I can do to help her until Monday when we can get her to a vet? I know you can give a dog human medications like phenergan but can you give a cat something like Immodium? What about syringe feeding? What would I Use? She is not a milk drinker, never has been. I'm really afraid that if I can't do something for her she will not make it until Monday.

Sorry for such a long first post but I am lost as to what to do for her.
post #2 of 19
Hello and welcome, though I am sorry for the reason you have sought us out.

Please forgive me for being blunt, but if your cat has not eaten in four days, she is already extremely ill. Cats organs begin to shut down after about three days with no food. Liver function fails. With the diarrhea and not drinking, she is most likely severely dehydrated. Dehydration not taken care of in time causes the kidneys to shut down.

There really isn't anything you can do for her at home, at this point, she needs veterinary attention. I understand your circomstances but I urge you to try to find a way. Do you belong to a church? If so, perhaps you could call a chuch member. Do you have a health care worker? Perhaps you could call on her/him.

Please don't give her any human medicines. They are not meant for cats. If you are not skilled in syringe feeding, there is a danger of aspiration. But if you have an eye dropper you could try dribbling some water into her mouth.

Get a bowl of warm water and hold her in your lap. Slip the dropper into the side of her mouth and squeeze some drops in. Do enough to get a few cc into her every half hour. I honestly don't know how much this will help Monday is a long way away. But it's all I can offer.

My thoughts are with you and your dear one.
post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 
I have done syringe feeding on both human and dogs. I am trying to get ahold of my daughter to see if I can get her to come and take her for me. I was in a motorcycle accident with my husband and we are both still healing up from it and our church is of no help to anyone for anything. I do have some pipettes that I can use to try and give her some water. Can you give a cat Ensure? I have never had to deal with a sick cat before and I'm just at a loss here. I c an handle sick people, I was a medical assistant before my accident and have dealt with sick dogs before. I've just never had a sick cat.

Thank you for the quick reply and I'll give the water a try and keep trying to get a hold of my daughter. Thank you.
post #4 of 19
You can give a cat flavorless pedialyte, I do not know about ensure.

If you want to try syringe feeding, make a warm thin gruel with pate style canned food and warm water. Use a small (3 cc) syringe to avoid giving too much at once, and give only about 1 or 2 cc at a time. Make sure each dose is completely swallowed before giving more. Don't give more than 10 cc at one session, as her tummy probably cannot handle more than that.

I am praying your daughter can get her to the vet today.
post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thank you very much for the advice. I put a small bowl of water in front of her just now and she did take a few sips on her own. This is the first time she has done that since she got sick that I know of. In a bit I will try the warm food/ gruel mix in a bit and see how that goes. As far as I know she is not throwing up, just the diarrhea. I have not slept much because of watching her and trying to see what she is and isn't doing. I have argued against cell phones in the family, now I wish we all had one so I could get to my daughter.
post #6 of 19
Hi Jules, I thought I would check in and see how the syringe feeding went. Still hoping you were able to get your daughter to get your beloved kitty to the vet.

Please keep us posted.
post #7 of 19
Thread Starter 
Still haven't gotten a hold of my daughter yet. It's Saturday night and you know how 21 year olds are. They are probably out for the night. Maybe I can get her tomorrow.

Prissy is taking water with the dropper right now and I'm going to do the syringe feeding in a little while. I'll let you know how she does. She did use the litter box a little while ago and it was normal. Hopefully whatever it is has run its course. Thank you so much for your help.
post #8 of 19
You're welcome. Ah, 21, on a Saturday night, yes, she would be out. Well, tomorrow is still better than Monday, and you can keep her going on hourly syringe feedings/waterings until then.

I'll be checking in on you and Prissy again later.
post #9 of 19
Otto's given you some good advice.

I'm glad your baby is drinking a little on her own, but do keep giving her small amounts of water every hour or so. Dehydration is very dangerous and can cause all sorts of problems on top of what's already wrong.

There's a very helpful website about syringe feeding, also called assist feeding (some call it force feeding, but it isn't). Please see www.assistfeed.com. Scroll to the bottom and click on the link for the yahoo assist feed group. That site was a life-saver for me when I first began assist feeding my cat. If you have any feeding questions, please let me know. I've been doing assist feeding a long time. As otto mentioned, if you can get a 3cc syringe it will be very helpful - the pharmacy may have small syringes for giving baby meds. That'll do in a pinch.

Hope you can get your sweet girl some vet help ASAP. In the meantime, keeping her hydrated and feeding small amounts of food will help.
Please don't give her any human meds or meal supplements (like Ensure). Keep her warm and comfortable. I know you're already giving her lots of love.

Hope you'll soon hear from your daughter. Good wishes and thoughts going to you and Prissy.
post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thank you KTLynn. I appreciate the link. I do have syringes here already from different things that had to do with my accident. I think I'm about as well stocked as a pharmacy as far as syringes and bandages,lol I will sure check that site out just to make sure I'm doing things the right way. Thanks you so much everyone!
post #11 of 19
Thread Starter 
I went to the site above and did a little reading. I found one thread that was very helpful in the mixing of it. Prissy took 3 cc of her food mixed with the pedialyte instead of water very well and is sitting here licking her lips now. I think we just might make it now. I can't tell you all how much I appreciate the help. I have grown so attached to her over the last 3 years that I dont' know what I'd do without her. Thanks again and I will continue with 3 cc feedings every hour until she either starts eating or I can get her to the vet.
post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
I want to thank you for all the help. I set my alarm and woke up every hour on the hour and gave her 3cc of egg yolk with a little milk . I was also giving her Pedialyte every 15 minutes and she is eating her regular food today. We are still going to take her to the vet tomorrow but she is doing well and actually playing with my dog. I dont' know what I would have done without the great advice here. Thank you so much!
post #13 of 19
Thank you for the happy update! Well done keeping her going!

When you take her to the vet I recommend you ask that a blood panel be done for her, to make sure all is well. Your vet will do a senior blodd profile which checks liver and kidney function, thyroid, white cell count and so on. Not only will it show you how she's doing now, it gives you a basis for what is normal for her as she gets older.

Please let us know how Prissy's vet visit goes.
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by otto View Post
Thank you for the happy update! Well done keeping her going!

When you take her to the vet I recommend you ask that a blood panel be done for her, to make sure all is well. Your vet will do a senior blodd profile which checks liver and kidney function, thyroid, white cell count and so on. Not only will it show you how she's doing now, it gives you a basis for what is normal for her as she gets older.

Please let us know how Prissy's vet visit goes.


Great to hear how much Prissy's improved. I agree that your diligence with doing the feedings kept her going and may have jump-started her appetite a little since she's even eating some of her regular food now. Still, you're smart to keep the vet appointment. Ditto to what otto said about doing bloodwork.

Thanks for letting us know how Prissy's doing. Fingers crossed she'll continue to improve.
post #15 of 19
Please be careful if you are giving a cat regular cows milk. Many cats cannot digest it and will have diarrhea. Not something she needs right now.

It's good that Prissy is taking the syringe feedings. She must be a really sweet girl being so good for you. You are doing great keeping hydrated and getting some food in her.

Praying all goes well and your girl feels better soon. So sorry about your accident and now worrying about Prissy, too.
post #16 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skimble View Post
Please be careful if you are giving a cat regular cows milk. Many cats cannot digest it and will have diarrhea. Not something she needs right now.

It's good that Prissy is taking the syringe feedings. She must be a really sweet girl being so good for you. You are doing great keeping hydrated and getting some food in her.

Praying all goes well and your girl feels better soon. So sorry about your accident and now worrying about Prissy, too.
It was only 1/4 tsp, enough to mix the yolk up is all. I already knew about the cow milk thing and I dont' let either of our cats nor our dogs have any of it.

She went to the vet today. Got a full pysical with blood work. They said they would call with those results. He thinks it is a severe intestinal virus and has given me meds to give her along with the two shots he gave her. He figured her age to be between 10-12 years which is about what I thought based on how wore down her teeth are. We got her from my sister who said she was 2, had been fixed and declwed. Trust me, she is not declawed,lol We really weren't sure on her age either until the last year or so when she started slowing down and acting like an older cat would.

The vet said that most canned cat food was garbage and not fit for them. He said that Iams was about the only one that was any good nutrition wise. He suggested with her and her teeth to give her real human canned tuna or canned chicken mixed with some good kitten chow.

I have to thank you all again. Had it not been for your advice on the assisted feeding he said that she would not have made it through the weekend. You all saved my kitty"s life and I can't thank you enough! Thank you so very much! If I can ever do anything to help let me know. I have my PM's set to notify me by email. I am a great listener and I have very strong shoulders!
post #17 of 19
I'm so glad to hear your cat's doing well!

One thing to be careful about with tuna.. If cats eat enough of it, they may protest anything else. It's kind of like asking a six year old if he wants ice cream for breakfast

You ought to check out the Nutrition forum for some advice on what might be the best foods for her. Especially with her teeth, it may be best to switch her to an all canned/wet diet.

Good luck to you and Prissy!
post #18 of 19
Hi! Thanks for the update on Prissy! I'm glad to hear how well you kept her going over the weekend.

I'm afraid I have to disagree with your vet about the food. I am quite shocked at the advice. Unless.....was this just to feed her short term until she is feeling better?

There are many nutritionally complete canned foods on the market that are good for Prissy. There are also several canned kitten foods to chose from. Human tuna or human canned chicken is not good for her at all.

Aside from protein, it doesn't have any of the nutrients she needs to stay healthy in her old age. And it's much too high in sodium. Older cats are subject to high blood pressure.

Nor can I think how it would be easier for her to eat, especially mixed with kitten kibble. If you really think about it, canned tuna and canned chicken aren't soft at all, but many canned pate style cat foods are.

I am not a vet, but I know a bit about feline nutrition, and I know a lot about home care for elderly cats!

10-12 years old is senior sure, but not ancient. A good dental cleaning and extraction of any teeth that are troubling her would most likely give her many more comfortable years. Cats can live quite well without any teeth at all, if it comes to that. This, of course, depends on what her blood work shows.

Do please let us know what you find out about that.
post #19 of 19
Thread Starter 
Otto, your advice has proved to be invaluable to me so I am going to heed this too. I'll call the vet and double check to make sure if he meant all the time or just while she is getting better. I'm not going to lie, since my accident, the meds I take sometimes make my brain a little unreliable to say the least.

None of her teeth are "bad". They are just worn down quite a bit. I know before we got her she was mostly an outside cat and my sister is not the best pet owner out there so there is no telling how she was fed or where she got her food even. She let her young children terrorize the poor thing. When we first got her for the first 6 months you wouldn't have even known she was here. She would wait and slink along the wall to get to the litter box and her food. She finally started letting people pet her now and then but has decided that I'm her human and that's all she needs,lol Cats are so wonderfully funny!

I'm going to call the vet then go to the pet store and start reading labels. I have all night to read the nutrition section so I'll know what to be looking for tomorrow.

Once again, thank you to everyone!
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