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sick kitty

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
My 13 year old cat has a liver infection. He is not eating at all and has lost a lot of weight. The doc gave him antibiotics that we started on Saturday. It is Monday, and Norton has eaten little to nothing since and is very lethargic. What are the chances that a liver infection is reversible? When should he start eating again? I have been trying to give him his favorite people food such as shrimp and turkey because it all he will eat. Is this bad?

If anyone has any infor or advice it would be very much appreciated. I love my little guy.

Thanks a lot

-Jacquie
post #2 of 26
you will probably get more responses if you post this in the health/nutrition forum.


good luck & I hope that Norton feels better soon!
post #3 of 26
Quote:
Originally posted by JacquieFaith
My 13 year old cat has a liver infection. He is not eating at all and has lost a lot of weight. The doc gave him antibiotics that we started on Saturday. It is Monday, and Norton has eaten little to nothing since and is very lethargic. What are the chances that a liver infection is reversible? When should he start eating again? I have been trying to give him his favorite people food such as shrimp and turkey because it all he will eat. Is this bad?

If anyone has any info or advice it would be very much appreciated. I love my little guy.

Thanks a lot

-Jacquie
I am not a Vet so I can't answer about the chances your cat has but we all hope for the best for you and Norton. You might try feeding him some Glop, which has a very high nutritional value and is readily accepted by most kittens and cats.

Pete
post #4 of 26
I have heard of something called Nutrical for cats. It is a high calorie supplement that comes out of a tube and they are supposed to really like it.I think that giving him foods he likes would be ok as he needs to eat something. You should ask your vet about this though as I too am not an expert. I also want to wish all the best to you and your Norton. He sure has lived to be a good age.
post #5 of 26
Did the vet run tests? Is is a liver infection or liver disease? There are quite a few possiblities with the liver. You can use what you need to temp him to eat. You can use baby food, just make sure it has no onion powder, you can try some Lactaid which is a lactose free milk but you can buy it whole so it has the same amount of fat or you can try some of the heavier meats like cooked ground beef or some steak.
post #6 of 26
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone. That was all excellent advice and I have written it all down so we can discuss with the vet. Norton is not doing too well today. He has not eaten anything on his own in days. We have force fed him a little. This morning he was very lethargic and wobbly, so we took him back to the vet. I think it is a liver infection, not disease, but I'll ask. He has jaundice in his mouth and ears and the doc kept him so he can run an IV today. I am so worried. He said we may need a specialist. Where do I get Nutri-Cal? I have the syringes for water which we have given him. I will try it with baby food when he gets home. I'm so upset I can't think straight. Any more info or advice would be appreicated.

Thanks again everyone!!!

-Jacquie
post #7 of 26
Jacquie, my 14-year-old Boo isn't eating much either since he came home last Thursday after getting his teeth cleaned. His ALT (liver enzyme) was slightly above normal, though my vet said it wasn't in the danger zone yet. He's lost some weight and it worries me. It seems that he's hungry - will go into the kitchen and look at the food dishes, but then he won't eat much. I don't know if this is related to switching his diet, because although I've put him (or tried) on a prescription diet for his liver, he hasn't eaten any of it (as far as I can see). I put his old food in one dish, the new food in another dish, and he doesn't seem to want to go near either dish. Could it be that the new food has a smell he doesn't like? He will lick a little sauce from canned cat food, he'll eat a couple of Pounce Tartar Control treats, and I gave him a little bit of Lactaid (lactose-free milk). But he doesn't seem to do much more than a tiny nibble here and there, and when I'm almost making him eat.

I'd also like to know where I could find this Glop or Nutrical. I think he needs calories; he seems to be weak and listless too. I'm glad he hasn't stopped eating completely, but I'm worried nonetheless.

Your poor Norton. Let us know what the vet says.
post #8 of 26
I would definatley get to a specialist as soon as you can. Although I do not have a whole lot of experience with liver disease I have seen what it does. Jaundice shows it is pretty developed. I hope everything is going to be okay. Make sure you keep us posted with everything. I will crossing my fingers for you guys.
post #9 of 26
I hope the vet had some good news for you. I found NutriCal at PetSmart, so it's probably available at most good pet food stores. Boo likes it, so I'll be giving it to him as needed. Let us know how Norton's doing - my heart breaks for you because I know how hard it is on you when you're worrying about your baby.
post #10 of 26
I have a kitty that is in liver failure and hers is irreversible. All I can do is try to slow it down. Actually we rescued two from a mentally retarded lady who forgot to feed them most of the time so they were very malnourished. Sometimes liver disease is caused by malnurtition. When cats first come into us at our shelter, we have to really watch them and if they don't have any stool for a couple of days (which usually means they aren't eating) we have to begin forcefeeding, giving tuna, or anything else we can think of to get them to eat. If a cat is in liver failure or has a liver infection, you MUST get them eating. If by forcefeeding for a couple of days hasn't given them their appetite back, you can get periactin from your vet to give him. It is an appetite stimulant that works very well. If, in fact, your cat does have a serious liver problem like mine does, once you get him eating, I would start him on KD food (dry or wet) that is specifically made for cats with liver problems. They won't like it much at first but my cat loves it now. You have to get it at a vet's office. They will also drink a lot of water when the disease progresses which in turn causes more litter box scooping but it is well worth it to have a healthy cat!!!! Good luck!!!
post #11 of 26
Thread Starter 
Thanks again everybody. Missy - the exact thing you describe about your cat happened to mine. He seemed like he wanted to eat, but then wouldn't. We also changed his food which did not help, and gave him his favorite people food which also did not help.
post #12 of 26
Thread Starter 
Sorry - I couldn't finish that post. Anyway, it progressed until he would not even look at food. We took him to the vet and they did a blood test that said it was a liver problem. He was on IV but yesterday we had to take him home because the vet was closed for the 4th. He did not do well at all. We force fed him a prescription food from the vet, but he seemed completely listless all day. We took him back to the vet today. We were hoping a specialist would see him, but the doc felt that he could do the same as a specialist. He put him back on the IV which is where we are at right now. I am not sure about this. I want him to have a proper diagnosis. I hope he is not treating him for an infection when he may have liver disease. I dont want to make it worse, and I feel he is really suffering. I am beside myself with worry and grief and I need more info from the vet, which I dont feel I am getting. Missy - you should take your kitty back to the vet. What you describe is frighteningly similar to what Norton has. I hope your Boo gets better real soon. Please dont wait.

What should I do now?

-Jacquie
post #13 of 26
Thread Starter 
We just told the vet that we want a specialist to look at him today, since we did not feel he was doing enough. My husband is on his way with Norty right now. I am praying for a correct diagnosis and successful treatment immediately. Last night we felt like he wasn't going to make it through the night. It was horrible!! I feel a little better right now knowing he will be in good hands soon. I will let you know what the new doc says as soon as I can. Keep your fingers crossed for Norty please.
post #14 of 26
I am keeping my fingers crossed for all of you. I am glad he is getting the attention he needs now. I am anxious to hear how he is!!
post #15 of 26
My fingers are crossed too. Please keep us updated!
post #16 of 26
Thread Starter 
I am sorry it took so long to reply. My husband, Eric, called me from the specialists office on Thurs, 7/5 and said that they did a sonogram and found that his liver had completely shut down. They said he was dying and that he was suffering and we should put him to sleep. Me and Eric were hysterical, but we had to put him down. I went home from my office immediately and have not been back until today, which is where my computer is. I will be taking off from work the rest of the week, so forgive me for not posting after today until next week. I did nothing but cry all weekend long. My heart is breaking and this is the worst pain I have ever felt if you can believe it. Norty was like my son. We made him such a big part of our lives every single day. We could not have loved him any more. I just cant believe this happened! The doctor said there was nothing they could have done to save him or to prevent his from happening. I wonder though. If I had brought him in sooner, maybe this could have been prevented or maybe we could have prolnged his life. I will always have to live with that and it makes me so sick to my stomach. I have an endless amount of tears and its not getting any easier. I thought clearing my head at work today would help, but the thought of coming home to an empty house is unbearable. Putting all of his toys away and cleaning and putting away his bowls was so much more than aweful, I cant even describe the pain. I wish I understood why and how this happened. I am so greatful that there are people out there like all of you who really understand, because I cant go on and on to people about my cat, because they dont understand. People have lost pets and members of their own families, so how can I expect them to understand, so I have kept it to myself and my husband. But I knew all of you would understand.

Missy - I dont want to scare you, but please take your kitty back to the vet and let me know what happens. Hoepfully, it is a totally different problem. I truly hope so.

Thank you so much everbody for your thoughts, prayers and concern. I Hope I will be feeling a little better by next week, but right now it does not seem possible. My husband wants to get a kitten this week, but somehow that doesn't feel right. Like I am replacing Norty or something. I dont want to say the same things to a new kitten that I said to Norty. And I dont want to be "Mommy" again. Eric thinks it will be a good distraction though because the house is so, so lonely with just the 2 of us and all we do is talk about Norty and cry. What do you think? If you dont hear back from my until next Monday, its only because I have no access to a computer unless I am at work.

I wish you and your kitties all love and peace. Now go hug and kiss your kitties for me and dont let them go!

-Jacquie
post #17 of 26
Jacquie - I'm so so sorry for your loss. My heart is breaking just reading your post. I know this is a terrible time for you and your husband but Norty was lucky to be cared for and loved so much and to have lived a happy life with you. Thinking of you...
post #18 of 26
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much for your words. I'm sure Mindy is very lucky as well.
post #19 of 26
Quote:
Originally posted by JacquieFaith
I am sorry it took so long to reply. My husband, Eric, called me from the specialists office on Thurs, 7/5 and said that they did a sonogram and found that his liver had completely shut down. They said he was dying and that he was suffering and we should put him to sleep.
The doctor said there was nothing they could have done to save him or to prevent his from happening. I wonder though. If I had brought him in sooner, maybe this could have been prevented or maybe we could have prolonged his life.

Thank you so much everybody for your thoughts, prayers and concern. I Hope I will be feeling a little better by next week, but right now it does not seem possible. My husband wants to get a kitten this week, but somehow that doesn't feel right. Like I am replacing Norty or something. I don't want to say the same things to a new kitten that I said to Norty. And I don't want to be "Mommy" again. Eric thinks it will be a good distraction though because the house is so, so lonely with just the 2 of us and all we do is talk about Norty and cry. What do you think? If you don't hear back from my until next Monday, its only because I have no access to a computer unless I am at work.

I wish you and your kitties all love and peace. Now go hug and kiss your kitties for me and don't let them go!

-Jacquie
Jacquie,
Don't do this to yourself; the doctor told you there was nothing that could have been done to save him or prevent it from happening. If you continue to torture yourself with the "what if's" or "if only's" you will be torturing yourself needlessly. Hindsight is always 20/20 and you did what you thought to be in his best interests. The time he was healthy you enjoyed him as he was, naturally and without reservation. He loved you and reciprocated with his devotion and affection; that is what you need to remember.
I agree with you about getting a new cat; don't do it now. You need time to grieve and another cat will not be Norty. Treasure the memory and deal with the loss; you will know when the time is right to get another cat but when you do don't try to get another Norty. Preserve his memory and accept the new cat as an individual and not a replacement. You will be with Norty again and when you are he will be healthy, loving and pain free. May God Bless you and comfort you in this darkest of hours.

Pete
post #20 of 26
Thread Starter 
Pete -

Thank you so much for those wonderful and kind words. You made me cry, but in a good way. I will try to remember what you said.

I will not get another cat like Norty, who was a gray tabby. Maybe something totally different. I will never forget Norty. He was the best cat in the world. He never did anything wrong in his life, and I am not just saying that. I wish he were here with me, but I hope to see him again one day in heaven. Until then, he will live in my heart and my dreams.

Thanks you so much

- Jacquie
post #21 of 26
Quote:
Originally posted by JacquieFaith
Pete -

Thank you so much for those wonderful and kind words. You made me cry, but in a good way. I will try to remember what you said.

I will not get another cat like Norty, who was a gray tabby. Maybe something totally different. I will never forget Norty. He was the best cat in the world. He never did anything wrong in his life, and I am not just saying that. I wish he were here with me, but I hope to see him again one day in heaven. Until then, he will live in my heart and my dreams.

Thanks you so much

- Jacquie
Jacquie,
I spoke from the heart, and I believe you will see him again. He IS there with you, in your heart and in your memories; only his physical being has changed, his presence has not. God Bless.

Pete
post #22 of 26
I am so sorry to hear about Norty. You did what you could for him. It is rough loosing a loved one. Please do not do the what if's. You gave him love,attention,care and a home, for that you are his angel. Now he will look in on you from time to time and be glad that he left his footprint in your heart. Please, if you need to talk feel free to let it out here.
post #23 of 26
I am VERY sorry to hear about Norty. I know how u feel. I had a cat named Doonesbury for over 15 years and he was my BEST friend. Over 10 years ago, He stopped eating one day and rapidly lost weight since then. The vet told me that I had a choice- to put him on an iv to force feed or put him to sleep.
I couldn't accept either choice (what kind of quality life would Doonesbury have hooked up to an iv???) so I brought him home praying that he would start eating again so I wouldn't have to make that choice. During the weekend, I tried everything I could think of to get him to eat and didn't have any luck until that Sunday nite. He finally ate some tuna. I was sooo THRILLED and thought that meant he was on his way back to recovery. Monday was my first day working after school so I didn't come until 5 and when I arrived home, my dad had to tell me that Doonesbury died around 3 (my usual time to arrive home) I still wonder if he was waiting for me to come home before he died. I guess I will always wonder about that. I feel guilty about that myself. It BROKE my heart! I cried, cried for over a month and couldn't sleep for at least 2 weeks (Doonesbury ALWAYS slept with me). My neighbor's cat just had kittens and when she heard that my cat died, she told my mom that she'll keep one kitten for me. When I first heard of this offer, I got really upset because I knew that NO cat can ever replace Doonesbury in my heart (we had a VERY VERY special relationship) and I felt it was too soon but after a month of not sleeping and feeling empty, I knew I needed to have a cat to love and care for. When I went to pick out a kitten from my neighbor's litter, I MADE sure that the kitten was the TOTAL opposite of Doonesbury in every way- Doonesbury was black, male and BIG. Rusty, the new kitten I picked was a calico tiny female. That helped me heal and I grew to love Rusty.
No cat will ever replace Doonesbury in my heart and I know it will never happen BUT other cats have created their own niche in my heart in different ways. I have 4 cats (2 are living at home with my parents now) and 2 cats living with me and I love them all in different ways.
It's important to remember that u gave Norty the best care possible and u did everything u could do to meet his needs. He was very lucky to have lived with u and ur hubby.
U will see him someday in heaven. I know that WILL happen! I know Doonesbury will greet me in Heaven. Several times when I was at my parents home, I got a real strong feeling that Doonesbury was there in the room. I just can't explain the feeling but I KNEW he was there with me. Norty will check in on u once in a while.
Hang in there! When u feel ready to adopt a kitten or cat, I encourage u to make sure the new cat will be the "opposite" of Norty..
Remember we all understand what u are going thru and we empathize totally with u.
Pamela
post #24 of 26
Thread Starter 
Pamela The same thing you described with Doonesbury happened to Norty. He stopped eating and lost weight suddenly. The IV from the vet did not work at all. I just couldn't bear to see him suffer. We had been force feeding him and we could tell he was laboring. My husband just now called me to tell me he picked up his ashes today. It's all so horrible. Besides my husband, he really was my best friend.

Anyway, last week we got a new kitten. I was totally against it, but my husband insisted. He also is the exact opposite of Norty. Norty was a domestic grey tabby and Jinxy is a silver Persian. He is totally adorable, and it definitely helped having him around although I feel really guilty about loving a new kitty. He does need a mommy though and he is way cute. I try not to say the same things to him that I said to Norty and when I find myself doing it I get really sad. I hope Norty is not mad at me. I let him do things that Norty was not allowed to do because he is a kitten and he doesn't understand yet. That makes me feel really guilty too. I just pray for Norty and that he understands. I will remember him every day no matter what. Thanks for your message, its somehow comforting to know that other people went through what we went through.

If anyone out there has a cat that suddenly changes their eating habits, please dont assume your cat is finicky. Take him immediately to the vet. I'm still not sure if anything could have been done, but if there is a possibility, you must be aware of it.

Peace and love - Jacquie
post #25 of 26
Jacquie,

I felt guilty also when I first got Rusty after Doonesbury passed away. I didn't want Doonesbury to feel like I was replacing him and forgetting him.

It took time for the guilt to go away and hmm..I made sure to do new traditions with Rusty so there wouldn't be too many similarities in my relationship with rusty compared to mine with Doonesbury.

It will take time and u will NEVER forget Norty but the grief does ease. U have many wonderful memories of Norty that no one can ever take away. I have many fond memories of Doonesbury myself.

Enjoy Jinxy! U're right, he needs a mommy. Remember to love him as an invidual. Don't feel guilty about letting him do things that u normally wouldn't let NOrty do.

Hang in there.
Pamela
post #26 of 26
Thread Starter 
Thanks Pam. I will remember that. I will make sure my relationship with him is not the same. Well, it isn't the same, but I am a good mommy to him. He's just a kitten, I have to be there for him. At first it was drudgery, but now it's like I need an outlet to channel my love that I gave to Norty, so Jinxy is getting that benefit. I am also comforted by the fact that Eric picked up Norty's ashes yesterday, and they are now in a pretty little chest that I put on our mantle. He belongs home and I am glad that is where he will stay. I am crying just thinking about it. My poor baby!!

Anyway, thanks for the sweet note. Your kitty is very lucky to have you!

-Jacquie
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