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Possible Parasites?

post #1 of 73
Thread Starter 
Persil is sick. The night before last I noticed that her breathing seemed fast, though not from her mouth - her sides were heaving. All her other behaviour seemed normal, so I thought maybe I was being paranoid. Yesterday it seemed slightly worse - as if she was panting with her mouth closed. And her coat was 'staring' slightly. So I took her to the vet this morning. And he says maybe she has parasites in her lungs, which seem congested, though there is no runny nose or coughing. He gave her an anti-parasite injection, an antibiotic and a vitamin, and I must take her back tomorrow. The vet can't tell me the name of this parasite in English, but says it could be very serious. Tomorrow he may X-ray her. Now I am really scared and it is not paranoia. Does anyone have any information or experience on what this is and what the outlook could be?
post #2 of 73
Is it lungworm? If so your cat will develop a sort of hacking dry cough almost like she is trying to cough up a hair ball and can't quite make it. Your vet can treat lung worm depending on how severe the infestation is-
post #3 of 73
Thread Starter 
I don't know. He said it could be a parasite that had moved to her lungs, but she has no other symptoms at present other than fast shallow breathing and looking slightly out of condition. She seems to have got thinner too, though I put that down to losing her 'kitten' looks and becoming more 'cat-shaped'. She is certainly eating and drinking well, and her litter behaviour is normal. I have been so busy with my new job, and the changes in her have been gradual, but I am kicking myself for maybe not noticing something earlier.
post #4 of 73
Oh, Jenny, strong healing vibes going out to our lovely Persil. I'm praying that everything will be taken care of by the vet and all will be well. You know how special Persil is to me too.
post #5 of 73
Thread Starter 
Thanks. I need it - part of it is not being sure right now what the exact problem is. I kept asking this morning what could be done if it is worms in her lungs and the vet just looked at me and shrugged and said it was very serious. It is terrifying. I have been looking up lung worms and heart worms and it is not nice - even after they are dead they can kill the host. She is so little and we all adore her - even Dushka has now taken to washing her, as if she knows she needs comfort.
post #6 of 73
Please post as soon as you can when you hear from the vet. I'll be checking this thread all day and weekend to hear how Persil is doing. She is such a special little thing.
post #7 of 73
Thread Starter 
OK, it's 10 AM here and we are back from the vet. Good news. This morning the heaving of her flanks definitely seemed less, and the vet agreed with me. She spent most of the night sitting, not lying, on my bed, as if it was uncomfortable to lie down. The poor little girl kept yawning - tired but unable to sleep. He gave her another injection, and now I have to give her some tablets at home. He thinks it was worms, but not one of the really nasty ones like lungworm or heartworm. But she lost weight so fast, and didn't have the normal round tummy that goes with worms - and I can't understand how it happened as she has had all her normal worming treatments. I have seen nothing in her stools either.

I also have preventive tablets for the others, so I hope that is it. The vet only wants to see her again if there is no further improvement or I think the problem is recurring. He also gave me some conditioning tablets for her as her coat is all ragged. She is sitting on my desk now and looking a bit sorry for herself, but definitely better than yesterday. Her breathing is still faster than it should be, and I will keep a careful watch. Thank goodness I am not going home to the UK for Christmas - no way could I leave her like this.
post #8 of 73
Poor little Persil
I'll be keeping you both in my thoughts.
post #9 of 73

I'm so sorry and I'm praying that she will be O.K. It must be maddening not knowing what exactly is causing it
post #10 of 73
Oh my, Jenny, I'm praying for precious Persil that she will return to perfect health promptly!
post #11 of 73
Thread Starter 
Now I am scared again - all day she has just lain in my arms and breathed so fast, though she has eaten some boiled chicken and used the litterbox. But she does not want to move or play or anything, and her flanks are heaving in and out. There is no emergency vet service here now till Monday so I am on my own with her, and I really do not know what to do.
post #12 of 73
Are her gums pink in colour or are they purple or blue? If they are going blue you need to find a vet. Does your vet have an after-hours line?
post #13 of 73
Thread Starter 
Thanks. I checked her gums last night after reading about oxygen deprivation on the net. They are pink, though not deep in colour. She slept better last night, lay down next to me with Ellie's paws around her so I think she felt loved. This morning she seems a little better, and has eaten well. She even batted Dushka a couple of times. But her breathing is still fast, though her flanks are not heaving the way they were, and she does not want to play or run around like normal. What is strange is there is no coughing or wheezing, and her mouth is shut. She looks miserable, and is so thin. I don't know if her body is absorbing the parasites or if there is something else that we have missed. There is no way I can get her to a vet till Mon morning - there is no animal hospital or anything like that. Even the vet does not keep animals overnight so there is no after hours person on duty.
post #14 of 73
Oh Persil is in my thoughts!
post #15 of 73
Jenny several of my cats breathe rapidly. I worried about them, but the vet couldn't find anything wrong with them.

All you can do is let her rest for now until Monday. Is she dehydrated at all? Running a fever? Drooling or doing anything else besides breathing rapidly?

There are a lot of different parasites that cats can get. I hope they narrow this parasite down for you and are able to help Persil-
post #16 of 73
Thread Starter 
Hissy, thanks for posting when I know you have your own problems. There is definitely something wrong - she only started this a few days ago, and it is accompanied by total change in behaviour and sudden loss of weight and condition. She looks thinner now than when I got her off the street and her coat is 'staring'. And she is so lethargic - she just sits with her eyes closed, either on/beside me or by a heat source. I can't bear to see her like this - she is such a fun-loving person normally. But maybe we are through the worse - her breathing is not as pronounced as it was yesterday, so I will see what tomorrow brings. Perhaps the antibiotic and hte anti-parasite treatments are working.
post #17 of 73
Please keep us updated! Sending Persil lots of get well vibes!
I don't mean to worry you more but could you ask the vet if he suspects some kind of organ failure or puncture?
post #18 of 73
More prayers for you, little Persil, please feel better soon! Thank you for continuing to keep us updated how your baby is feeling, Jenny.
post #19 of 73
Thread Starter 
Thanks. You couldn't worry me more - I am already so afraid she has a heart problem or a mass in her lungs - the vet said they were congested, but with no other symptoms of URI.That is why he thought it was parasites, and he may be right. If she is not well on the mend by tomorrow I will ask him for an Xray, though it means going to his other surgery on the other side of town.
post #20 of 73
More prayers for Persil's recovery!
post #21 of 73
Thread Starter 
I just checked her respiratory rate - it is 81 per minute when the average should be 20-30. She doesn't want to eat tonight though she is sniffing at food as if she is hungry. I got some water and egg yolk down her with a syringe. I will get her to the vet at 8.30 in the morning.
post #22 of 73
Oh Jenny, I hopeing that all is going to be ok, my heart goes out to you. It just makes me cry to know someone pet is suffering and that you are also. You are in my thought and prayers
post #23 of 73
Thread Starter 
Got her to the vet, who has now given her a cocktail of antibiotics, glucose and something to make her cough. She ate a little tuna this morning and I got two syringe fulls of goat milk down her, plus some water. She is not interested in normal cat food so I will liquidise some and put that in the syringe. This is reliving the nightmare I had with Dushka two years ago, who almost died from pneumonia. But the same vet treated her, and I trust him. I did not like the way he looked at Persil and shook his head - I didn't dare ask anything. He will see her again tomorrow.

Can anyone tell me how much water a 16 week old kitten should have per day, roughly? She is about average size for her age. Then I can make sure she gets it, whether by drinking or by syringe.
post #24 of 73
I'm sorry that I can't help with the water question, but I have been checking in to see how Percil is doing and praying to see more positive progress
post #25 of 73
Thread Starter 
I came home at lunchtime and she has eaten a little. I have given her 10 ml of water in a syringe and will give her more in a little while, as she does not seem to want to drink and she is dehydrated. Her breathing is down to 76 per minute from 81 yesterday, not much but at least its the right direction. I have to teach so I will leave her to go back to college - I have isolated her in my room so I can better monitor what she eats and drinks. But Ellie does not understand why she can't see her playmate and keeps scratching at the door.
post #26 of 73
May we also assume your vet ruled out any cardiac issues?
post #27 of 73
I have no words to express how I feel. If love, prayers and good vibes will help this kitty, then all the love, prayers and good vibes in the world are coming your way.

I'll keep looking in to see how she's doing.
post #28 of 73
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone. I have just got home and she is no worse, and has eaten a little during the afternoon, though not much. I have given her some more milk and water. I found out that she should have around 150 ml of water per day, so that is 15 full syringes . So far today I have given her 6, and she has maybe had another 2 in the liquid/food she has taken herself, so there is a long way to go.

Her breathing is still at the same rate, but she seems comfortable on a pillow under the radiator. We will see what the vet says tomorrow. Snow is falling fast so I hope the roads will be driveable in the morning.
post #29 of 73
My thoughts are with you and little Persil (what a perfect name)!
, little Persil!
post #30 of 73
Thread Starter 
At 7 PM Persil had 4 syringes full of liquidised IAMS kitten food (miracle of miracles, my vet had one bag - the first I have seen here!) and four hours later she has had 4 syringes of egg yolk and goat milk. She seems to have lost her dehydration and her flanks are not so caved in as they were. I will just feed her every 4 hours till she recovers her appetite. But poor little girl, she has started to hide from me - I hate being seen as the nasty lady who pokes her in the mouth with a syringe, though she is accepting the food. We haven't lost more than a few drops. If I can just keep her body strength up to fight this, then I hope the vet can work his magic with the right meds. Her breathing is still over 70 per minute, so there is a way to go.
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