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Senior cat not eating

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
My cat is going on 16 years old and is not eating much. She will lick some of the juice off of the canned food, but nothing else. We have tried baby food, expensive cat food, ham & turkey and the kitten replacement milk and she doesn't take much of any of it. Her weight has dropped from about 13 pounds to 8.2 on Saturday. I took her to the vet and did the senior blood panel. Everything came back within normal ranges (thyroid was a 5 when it should be 4, but she wasn't going to tackle that issue until we get kitty eating again). She did a full exam and didn't feel anything ot notice anything that would cause her disinterest in food. My cat has had some changes...our other senior cat passed away of renal failure about 5 months ago and we introduced a new cat about 7 weeks ago. She was crying all the time (day and night) and thought it might be because she was lonely. We did the slow introductions (over about 4-5 weeks) and she was eating fine through that process. The cats get along well and rarely is there hissing or growling. We also got Feliway to help her during the introductions. Our next step is feeding her by syringe, but I am not sure how well she is going to tolerate that (she never really did well with meds in the past). Has anyone done this before, to cats either take to it or not? Is it a permanent solutions for cats like her? I wish the blood draw would have shown something.
post #2 of 6
Did your vet recommend an appetite stimulant? How about a thorough teeth examination?
I have lost 2 seniors this year. Loss of appetite was the first sign of their deterioration. But unlike your cat, my seniors did not lose a close friend so their problem was old age and health issues.
post #3 of 6
There are a number of illnesses that will not show up in a blood panel. When one of mine had a similar issue (loss of weight and normal blood work), we ran a full body x-ray. He had a very slow growing cancer. He continued to lose weight over the next year until he finally crossed.

I'm not suggesting that your girl has cancer, but there are other tests that can be run to try to narrow this down. An appetite stimulant may help, but it would only be a temporary relief if she does have a deeper problem.

Sending positive vibes for your darling little girl!
post #4 of 6
If your cat has dropped from 13 to 8 pounds, I would be seriously worried about her health. I would recommend immediately having a feeding tube put in otherwise she runs a huge risk of getting fatty liver disease, and most cats don't win that battle.
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the advise.

Minka..feeding tube is next on the list if I have a hard time with the syringe. Last night and this mornings feedings went fighting me and took 2-5cc doses each time. Hopefully a step in the right direction.

yayi...she hasn't mentioned the stimulant. She did a check of her teeth/mouth when we saw her and didn't notice anything that would hinder her eating. We do have her teeth cleaned about every 2-3 years (or less if recommended). This vet was new to us and gave Abby one of the most thorough exams she has been through.

Momofmany...I am worried about cancer too. The xrays/ultrasound is the next step for us if this doesn't get her eating again on her own. We have already decided against any exploratory surgery do to her age and where her weight is right now.

Thanks for all the advise!
post #6 of 6
Best of luck michelep. Hopefully this is just caused by the stress of your cat's changed environment due to the loss of a companion and a new one introduced into the household. The x-rays etc. are the best next step for you. From 13 pounds to 8 is a really big drop in weight for any cat. I would be as seriously concerned as you are. If you have time, please post an update.
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