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I need advice ASAP!

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
AS many of you know, we took in a pregnant cat, Ruby, who had a litter of 6 three weeks ago. We had a runt/preemie, Layla. Tonight, our vet came by walking her dogs and asked to come in to see the babies. I said fine, of course, free vet check, heck yeah! (This is her 3rd visit and we are becoming good personal friends.) Anyway, she looked at Layla and put her on the scale. She weighs just 5 oz. at 3 weeks. She said that she is concerned about her stunted growth and relative development. (Layla is walking, has eyes and ears open, just like the rest of the litter.) She went to her house and got some KMR, bottles and syringe and suggested I start to feed her a couple of times a day, to see if she gains weight.

Here is the horrible part! She says if Layla is not at least 6 oz. next week, we should probably have her PTS, because she appears to have some genetic condition. She is a bit alien-looking, but sweet and playful like the rest. I don't know what to do. Is this bad advice from the vet? Has anyone heard of anything like this. She has lived for 21 days just fine, why not let her be?
post #2 of 15
I personally would want a second opinion. Especially if she doesn't seem in pain. I think of little Dana who has had all sorts of problems but still is bringing joy to leesali and the rest of us.
post #3 of 15
I wouldnt let them put her to sleep unless shes in pain which dosent sound like she is... I dont see the logic... shel prolly be fine I say a prayer for ya.
post #4 of 15
IMO I would not automatically put a cat to sleep if it didn't weigh a certain amount. If the cat doesn't grow or has something wrong, then IMO it will go naturally. Unless the cat is in pain or not breathing right, there is no reason to put it down.

BTW I NEVER once weighed any of my kittens and kept track of weight - I went by general looks and feel of the body to tell they were ok.
post #5 of 15
Thread Starter 
Here are som pics I just took with her big brother, any opinions? They're kind of hard to see, but I didn't want to use the flash.



post #6 of 15
She just looks like the runt is all. Oliver was the runt too, and I got the same advice, to put him down because eating was such a struggle. He is a handsome strapping cat now. I would get another opinion- and probably another vet.

Oliver then


Oliver now
post #7 of 15
She is quite small but no reason to put her down. As long as she's spayed (if she does survive) is the important thing.

In a litter of rexes I had a very small one - she was the only rex that actually was a pet quality (everything wrong with her standard wise). However, she was the sweetest little thing. She was adopted by a family and they told me later she followed their cat around like a little shadow. She was fine - just small.
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
She weighs 5 oz, while her brother weighs 14 oz. She does breathe differently than the others. I fell so much better after all your responses, but I am still concerned. This baby already has a spay appt. for Sept. 1 (she will be 10 weeks and is going to my mother.)
post #9 of 15
Please understand that no one in this community is a vet. You best bet is to see another vet and get a second opinion. If it is genetic then you may lose her after all, they are so fragile at this age anyway. Your vet may just be trying to protect you from future heartache, so you have to ask yourself how strong are you? I would certainly find out what genetic defect the vet suspects? My guess would be a heart problem because of the irratic breathing.

Best of luck
post #10 of 15
I agree with your vet that she is a very underweight kitten for her age. However, I agree with the other responses entirely. She may have a congenital/genetic/other problem, but if she is happy and not suffering, I would not put her down. Eventually she may need more costly diagnostic tests, or vet attention. If she is sick, something may happen and there is nothing that can be done. However, in my opinion, there is no need to put to sleep a young, happy kitten that is not in any distress. It is something that you will just have to see with time. She has probably already overcame many hurdles that other kitties could not have overcome. It sounds like she is already very much a "miracle" baby.

As to her spay appointment, I am a strong supporter of pediatric spay/neuter. However, most of the literature and experience in this field is on kittens over 2 lbs. If she has a major growth spurt, a spay at 10 weeks is reasonable. However, I would not push a spay on a small, possibly sick kitten at 10 weeks. I would make sure she is over 2 pounds, steadily gaining weight, and has had a thorough vet exam before her spay. Her siblings sound like they will be good to go at 10 weeks though! I think it is great that they all can be fixed before going into their new homes. Great job!
post #11 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnnasMom
She weighs 5 oz, while her brother weighs 14 oz. She does breathe differently than the others. I fell so much better after all your responses, but I am still concerned. This baby already has a spay appt. for Sept. 1 (she will be 10 weeks and is going to my mother.)
I would monitor her progress and would change the spay appt. if she doesn't reach 2 lbs by the time she is 10 weeks of age.

Katie
post #12 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45
BTW I NEVER once weighed any of my kittens and kept track of weight - I went by general looks and feel of the body to tell they were ok.
As a breeder, you were fortunate to have the experience to know what the general look and feel of a healthy, normal kitten body should be. Not everyone has that experience and so it is still a sound idea to get daily weights and to journal them so as to chart progress and catch problems before they get out of hand.
post #13 of 15
At three weeks, our runt weighed 5 ounces. Her heaviest brother weighed almost 9 ounces. Unless she is obviously in pain, I would really not put her to sleep. Here is a photo of her now...

post #14 of 15
When I was a girl we had a kitten that started out normal sizewize then was growing at a normal rate but stopped at about the size of a typical 8 week old kitten. I don't know if he was ever checked out by a vet but in terms of behavior and observable health he was just like any other cat--just was very small.
post #15 of 15
I forgot to mention that little Dumpling was one of the first to open her eyes, walk, etc.
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