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Putting weight on an emaciated cat.

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
My foster is quite emaciated. She weighs just barely 5 pounds and should probably weigh closer to 8 or 9. Is there anyway to quickly get weight on her that isn't unhealthy? The vet's plan of action isn't much of one and hasn't done much.

Right now she is getting mainly moist food (CA Natural) and is on KMR as a supplement per the vet.

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
post #2 of 13
You could try kitten food, it's higher in fat and calories then adult food. I wouldn't introduce it too quickly. Weight gain will take time, several months at least. I'm currently trying to get weight on one of my fosters who is hardly eating...i'm keeping him on kitten chow for now (not the best), but i can't think what else to do since he won't eat wet food, won't eat tuna....
post #3 of 13
I have a cat who has to fight to keep weight on, so I free feed her dry food and then give her "treats" of high-calorie canned food four times daily. This has helped trememdously.
post #4 of 13
High quality dry kitten food and Nutri-Cal from your vet.
post #5 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arlyn
High quality dry kitten food and Nutri-Cal from your vet.
and talk with your vet A/D is great for underwt animals ...
post #6 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by CherokeeDreams
My foster is quite emaciated. She weighs just barely 5 pounds and should probably weigh closer to 8 or 9. Is there anyway to quickly get weight on her that isn't unhealthy? The vet's plan of action isn't much of one and hasn't done much.

Right now she is getting mainly moist food (CA Natural) and is on KMR as a supplement per the vet.

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
Please keep in mind that what I did may not have been the best way, but I was watching this gal with an eagle eye...we rescued Frankie, almost starved to death (back legs couldn't support her when she'd try to pivot), and I simply kept her food bowl full, day and night, with Nutro Natural Choice Kitten food. She gained 3 lbs. in about 3 weeks, I've since changed how I feed her - in part as it appears she may be in early kidney failure, so what she's fed has changed and she went from becoming fairly plump to just a bit overweight.
Frankie was under 6 lbs. and per my vet, should be between 8 to 10 lbs. approximately.
post #7 of 13
I would have the vet run a stool sample. I currently have Sarabi, the skinniest foster I have ever had...and although the first poo sample showed no worms, the second showed roundworms and tapeworms. Maybe your girl has worms, causing her to stay thin.

Is she eating well? I had another foster cat (Sugartoes) who wouldn't eat when she was transferred to another foster home. (The other foster Dad had to spoon feed her to get her to eat anything!) I think she had issues of abandonment. Interestingly, when she was adopted, this was not a problem! Somehow, she knew she was home, and ate just fine!
post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beckiboo
I would have the vet run a stool sample. I currently have Sarabi, the skinniest foster I have ever had...and although the first poo sample showed no worms, the second showed roundworms and tapeworms. Maybe your girl has worms, causing her to stay thin.

Is she eating well? I had another foster cat (Sugartoes) who wouldn't eat when she was transferred to another foster home. (The other foster Dad had to spoon feed her to get her to eat anything!) I think she had issues of abandonment. Interestingly, when she was adopted, this was not a problem! Somehow, she knew she was home, and ate just fine!
I think this may be a bit of the issue i have with mine (who i can't get to eat). He was a stray outside, loved visiting and being always around people. I got him and he ended up inside a basement apartment, people only visiting (i.e. me) etc and i just think it's stress and depression almost that is making him not eat, and it keeps messing with his tummy. I just took him to my friends house for the week to see if settling into a bright, spacious home with tons of attention and tons of kids on the street would help. Fingers crossed. Good luck with your foster too!
post #9 of 13
Fastrack will also work- it is a powdered probiotic, and if you are sure the cat is healthy, add a bit of Fastrack to their canned food and it really does help.
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank you everyone for your suggestions. I'll call my vet in the morning and see if I can get some Nutri-cal.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Beckiboo
I would have the vet run a stool sample. I currently have Sarabi, the skinniest foster I have ever had...and although the first poo sample showed no worms, the second showed roundworms and tapeworms. Maybe your girl has worms, causing her to stay thin.

Is she eating well? I had another foster cat (Sugartoes) who wouldn't eat when she was transferred to another foster home. (The other foster Dad had to spoon feed her to get her to eat anything!) I think she had issues of abandonment. Interestingly, when she was adopted, this was not a problem! Somehow, she knew she was home, and ate just fine!

The vet already checked for worms and according to her, she has none. She seems to think that Teddy just wasn't eating for some reason in her old home, whether stress or what not, and the problem just compounded until she was too weak to eat.

I have seen improvement in her though. She does eat, not as much as I would like, but enough to make her much more fiesty.

Unfortunately, we don't know much about her past. The only thing we were told by her previous owners is that she started getting sick, started losing weight, and stopped grooming herself. She was so bad, we had to shave a huge portion of her back to the skin.

But, again, thank you. I will definitely call my vet in the morning and will make sure to update you all on what she says.
post #11 of 13
A Japanese breeder friend of mind recommended a fingertipful of liquid honey - royal jelly is better. It's a bit costly for liquid royal jelly (my tub is 280g of honey + 120g of royal jelly - around US$50) but it works! It ups the immune system, really beautifies the coat and makes them eat more...I've tried it on my cats and it really works with no fear of diarrhea. Just a fingertipful and wipe it on the side of the mouth for about two weeks.

Hope this helps!
post #12 of 13
With an underweight or starving cat I have had success in giving an egg yolk in beaten milk (KMR or goat milk) two or three times a week. They love it, and it helps add calories.
post #13 of 13
Ok.. so LuckyGirl was severly under weight , the doc said to give her as much as she'd eat. So this is what her majesty gets daily...

dry/crunchy food- unlimited, bowl full all day
water-unlimited, bowl full all day
wet/canned/packet food- 1pk/can per day 1/2 am, 1/2 pm
kitten milk- am & pm...this "juice box" size cont. says 3-4 servings, so I give her a small dish with her am/pm canned foods.
treats- she gets 10 tartar control treats p/day..this is for a 5lb kitty.

And sometimes she works those quarter sized babydoll eyes and gets table food, like chicken or beef...spoiled little baby ....

She should weigh between 7-8lbs for her age, and she was under 5. She finally has some meat on her bones now, and you can actually pinch a little bit of belly . And although the food is unlimited...she still acts like she's starving every morning and when I come home from work. As if I'm just not gonna feed her one day?!
PS...She goes to the vet tomorrow..I'll have her weighed and keep you posted!
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